On Tuesday, Nov. 3, the Student Union passed a new bill that, if approved by the University, would mandate academic departments to include information on their online and printed course listings as to whether a course is offered exclusively during either fall or spring semesters.
The bill is one of many student propositions which have passed through the student legislative group so far this year, concerning the accessibility of academic resources available for students.
Junior senator Madison Chickos, who authored the bill, explains her reasoning for bringing the issue to the attention of the Student Union. “I decided to do this after I had gone to schedule for my spring semester and found out that five of the classes I need to have taken to be able to graduate are only available in the fall, and I only have one fall left.”
Chickos continued “I discovered that many of the courses I need are always only available in the fall, and students are not given this information unless they specifically ask about it themselves, which is incredibly frustrating.”
Chickos said she “proposed that departments that regularly only offer classes in one semester should have to put that information on their websites and in pamphlets.”
This way, students can more easily proactively plan their four-year course agendas instead of simply “waiting and hoping that their classes will be available when they need them to be.” She hopes her initiative will help fellow students whose own programs of study require them to take courses offered solely in the spring or fall.
Among the Student Union senators who sponsored Chickos’ bill are junior Alyssa Lazarchik, sophomore Mario Volpe and sophomore Benjamin Goodman.
Goodman writes that although he was not personally involved in the creation of the bill, he was “absolutely behind it as a sponsor.” He said, “I came into John Carroll with 42 credits, placing me academically as a sophomore-and-a-half in my first semester on campus. With my advanced status, I wanted to do as much as I could and am hence a dual sports studies-Spanish major with a minor in business.”
Goodman continues, “I know of many other students who came in with outside credit as well, who have the same goals as I do or want to graduate early.”
For students like Goodman, knowing when certain classes are offered is a crucial factor in being able to graduate early or take on an increased credit-hour load in order to pursue an advanced degree.
“[The bill] allows better future planning and prevents confusion on class offering times,” he explains. “It would do wonders to help all of the people who came in with credits as well as the other overachievers like myself.”
The bill, which passed unanimously will most likely not go into effect until either the spring semester or following fall semester, as university materials need to be updated and reprinted.