alandrea: (Prevail)
[personal profile] alandrea
I spent hours planning my schedule for this year. I began months early. I outlined the courses I would take not just for this year, but for all that follow. The week this year’s class times were announced, I organised everything. My schedule was optimal.

On the day that registration for my year opened, I stayed up all night. It began at midnight, and although I attempted to log in at five minute intervals, the server was too overloaded for me to get on until half an hour had passed. Even with this setback, I knew I was ahead. How many others would be neurotic enough to start registering the moment they could? Well, enough to shut the servers down, I guess, obviously… but still, they must have been as delayed as I was. I was one of the forerunners.

And yet… the most important course… full. The others I’d wanted… scattered. Some were full; those that weren’t were full on the times that I’d planned to take. All of my carefully laid plans had to be cast aside. I grasped at anything I could, but came up short. I have only four full credits, rather than the five I was aiming for, and my schedule is awkward, with painfully long gaps. I managed to get into Lifespan Development, Personality and Individual Differences, Perception, Fundamentals of Social Psychology, Introduction to Criminology, and Law and Societal Justice, which I wanted, as well as The Social Psychology of Social Issues which I was not planning on. The only other thing I could get into was Introduction to Brain and Behaviour, which is technically a neurobiology course, and not really my bag, baby – though it does look interesting, I’m afraid it may be a bit much for me.

I believe that the courses were filled by third years. They get to choose courses before we do, and some of them chose ours because when they had needed them, the third years of that time had filled them. I’d heard a lot of people from higher years in a variety of majors and departments complaining about it last year. It’s a problem with the system, but I’m not going to revolutionise it.

That’s fine. I’ve got enough courses to be a full time student and just enough to get the scholarship renewed. I’ll be taking the main course during the summer – that’s cool, because it keeps me from doing nothing but Warcraft (I hit 80, by the way) for four months like I did this year. It also means that I’ll have to spend an extra year in school, because one of the courses that I couldn’t get into is a prerequisite for another course, which is a prerequisite for another course and so on. I’m down with that actually. It’ll cost a lot more, but I’ll be able to take some interesting courses that I wouldn’t have had time for otherwise. Also, it’s another year in the warm embrace of Academia before I’m cast out into the cold wilderness of The Real World. Maybe “warm embrace” isn’t quite accurate, but it’s what I need to hear right now.

The main thing now, is that when I went to school to scout out my classrooms, I noticed that I have a class on one side of the school fifteen minutes after a course on the other side of the school. That’s fine; I can make it. I’ll buy running shoes, and a jet pack. It’s all good. Problems arised however when I noticed that I also have a class on one side of the school that is fifteen minutes apart from a class that is not simply on the other side of school, but also across a parking lot, a busy street with lights that I would have to walk down to, another parking lot, and in a plaza. I don’t think I can make that one, even with a jetpack.

I phoned the school, to see what to do about this, and what I’ll have to do is ask the professor for the class in which I have a seminar if I can transfer to another seminar. As it stands now, they’re all full. I can only comfort myself with the fact that I only took that specific seminar because it was the only one available, and I really needed the course so that I could get the tuition paid. The tuition is now paid, and the way it works is that if a student drops out, even if they drop out before school begins, they don’t get any money back. The cash game is done. So, if worst comes to worst, a replacement seminar can’t be found, and I have to drop one course, I won’t lose the part of the tuition that the scholarship paid for. I might not be able to renew it, but we’ll deal with that when it comes to that. In such a case, I would have to drop either Brain and Behaviour, or Criminology. The former looks fascinating and would probably be very useful, but the latter is better as far as moving ahead with courses is concerned. Of course, if I get really torn about it, that extra year raises its head.

I guess the best thing to do at this point is to just go with the flow. The bookstore doesn’t even have the neurobiology textbook in yet. I’ll attend all the lectures for the first week, and I’m sure whatever happens will be for the best.
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alandrea

October 2011

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