Priority registration needs major overhaul

PHOTO ILLUSTRATION by Veronica Hurtado and Kiyotaka Asahi

By J.C. Casarez

Every semester, returning students look forward to registering for classes in hopes of getting the classes they need. Unfortunately, the classes are usually closed by the time they register.

Appointments are set in anticipation of an onslaught of too many students registering at once and as a means of creating an opportunity for returning students to select their classes first. Unfortunately there is no guarantee that the class you need will be available by the date of the appointment.

Students are left with the decision of choosing another class or waiting another semester in hopes the class needed will be available. This causes a delay for someone who is looking to transfer because it can easily throw your whole schedule off by anywhere from six months to a year.

Something needs to be done to protect students who really want to transfer. Perhaps the students who have met with a counselor and have an education plan should be made a priority. Other requisites can be placed like grade point average and college year of the student. These things should be taken in consideration in determining who has a priority to registering for the classes they need.

The issue goes deeper because everyone has a different amount of time dedicated to school. Some students are part-time while others are full-time. Some students stick to the classes required to transfer in a timely manner and others take their time taking various classes in other vocations gradually getting their academic requirements done. Others take classes with no real timeline to transfer to a four-year college.

The problem created here is that priority should be placed on those students who have plans of transferring sooner than later. Looking through the catalog one can’t help but notice that certain classes in the math, English and science departments are set aside for students involved in the Adelante program. These classes have preferred times and instructors.

Some will argue that the instructors shouldn’t  matter but when it comes to these classes the right professor determines how well the student will be taught the material which results in a better grade. It’s all relevant to maintaining your GPA and transferring to the college of your choice. One bad experience could set you back a semester, especially when dealing with math and science courses. Programs like Adelante have good intentions, but not every student can commit to the time and activities required as a member. Students have to make the most of their time by attending classes, studying, and in some cases working full and part-time jobs.

Some action needs to be taken because it is no longer just a race to find classes among fellow Elans. With classes getting full at many local colleges, many of their students are now filling the seats of East Los Angeles College classrooms. The priority shouldn’t be shown to just athletes and members of special programs like Adelante.

The opportunity should be made available to other full-time students who work just as hard at maintaining the grades and who wish to transfer within a two year period. It’s time administrators make changes to a system that is more efficient to all deserving students and not just a select few.

This article has 1 Comment

  1. Registration at ELAC is a NIGHTMARE. GPA and number of units completed should absolutely be calculated when determining registration priority. Most classes start out with people lined up out the door or standing in class hoping to get added, but by the end of the semester there are only a handful of students left in the class. Students who drop the class during the semester will then come back the next semester and overcrowd the class again.

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