It’s a sunny Friday – was cold in the morning but now the sun is out and it feels pretty good to let it warm you.  Even when the weather gets cold, we have some terrific looking flowerbeds on campus.  The flowers and greenery near the entrance to Farrell Hall look fantastic.

Students finished registering for class lastnight.  Typically this is a high stress time for students, particularly freshmen.  The good news is that because they are freshmen, they still have a lot of basic and divisional requirements they need to take.  So if during registration your Deac wanted to take art or English or bio and the section they wanted is full, they can choose different options.  They also can take electives, or take a second course in their intended major if they know it.  There will be plenty of time to finish their requirements, so they can take something fun for fun’s sake.

I did a quick peek at course availability, and while some are full, there are seats still available in some other courses freshmen and sophomores typically take.  That said, it might be an 8 or 9 am class, or maybe not the professor they first hoped to take – but there are options.  Any student having trouble with their schedule can work with an academic counselor in the Office of Academic Advising to get some extra help, particularly if they are under 12 credit hours.

A word about professorial reputation.  I wish students didn’t rely on other people’s opinions about a class, because each of us learns in different ways, and we all have different likes and dislikes (some like lecture, some like group work, some like people with a dry sense of humor – or dislike them).  So to base your idea of whether to take a class with a particular person based on the hive mind might not be the best strategy.  A student might have a bunch of friends with different learning styles and preferences who say “take Dr. X” or “don’t take Dr. Y” – when in fact Dr. X or Y might be someone that student could really click with.

True story: when I was an undergrad, I somehow missed the memo about ‘don’t take Dr. X for intro psych.’  I signed up because it was a class I wanted and was the only section with available seats.  And then I heard from all sorts of people ‘oh, you’re not in Dr. X’s class, are you?  Everyone flunks his class, he’s so hard!’ and I was panicking.  Until I got to the first class and realized he was a really nice guy.  He took pictures of us our first day so he could learn everyone’s names, and he was a good lecturer.  His tests were hard, but I learned a lot, and I liked it.  And I NEVER would taken his class if I had listened to the herd.  So if your Deac is stressing about a particular professor – please urge him or her to give that person a chance.

Enough about that.  Looking ahead to next week, we have our own version of Thanksgiving, affectionately referred to as Pitsgiving.  The annual Pitsgiving Feast will be held next Thursday, November 19.  Students can get turkey, stuffing, and some of the traditional dishes for lunch or dinner. The cost is $11 and payments are accepted at the door to the Pit.  The beauty of Pitsgiving is that it is akin to the new trend of Friendsgiving, where you have your closest friends (who are like family to you) to a potluck dinner before you celebrate the real one with your true family.  So they can have Pitsgiving with the people they like here, and then come home to you a week later.

Call your Deacs today and tell them you love them!

— by Betsy Chapman

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