School has been in progress for a month now, and I think I’ve just now settled into the groove of things. But the semester began with a rather rough start. To bring you up to date, I had originally planned to graduate at the end of last summer, but having not satisfactory found an internship I decided to do a minor in Communications Broadcasting with a focus on Web page content development/design to add to my Web page experience and resume, and do the internship for the spring.
This has been the most confusing and hectic semester of any school year that I can remember. It was the opposite of a “smooth” start. The big California budget problem has effected us university students in many ways. The registration fees shot up. Classes were cut. To reduce printing costs, the professors are required to compact their syllabi into a single page, where the rest was continued either on our student portal or on their personal Web page. Printing used to be free for Comm students, but now they charge .10 cents page. The computer editing lab hours have been cut, and a variety of other services have been reduced or are off on Fridays. The film club is on hold. All professors were assigned furlough days where they were required to take a day off, and as each professor has their own furlough schedule, we now had to keep track of that.
Adding to this confusion is a major campus construction that began last spring which added to the already tight parking situation. The campus is building new dorms and a cafeteria and a new parking structure. This activity took a big bite out of one of the student parking lots. To make up for the loss of parking, the school has rented out a portion of a parking garage off campus and is shuttling students back and forth throughout the school day. It’s really great – it works like airport parking. A shuttle bus comes by every 10-12 minutes or so and drops us off in front of the school.
One of my classes, a history class, has an elaborate three-tier in-class testing scheme. Exams are on Scantron, quizzes are on hand outs, and checkups are on lined paper. It took me several weeks to get this straight.
And there’s still more! For the first time I’m taking five classes. In the past I’ve usually taken four. One of the classes is divided into two separate classes, a lecture portion and a lab portion, each in a different building, each having a different professor, and each having its own testing schedule and curriculum. Finally, and this is the biggest challenge of this semester, for the first time ever, I’m attending two different campuses at the same time – the university campus and the community college. Fortunately, I have a choice of taking one of two city busses that goes between these campuses. BTW, a big perk we have is that our student IDs also serves as our bus pass, so we can ride the city bus for free anytime anywhere. Amazingly I was able to schedule everything out without having any conflicts.
Altogether this has made for a very hectic start of the school year.