Cancelations cause distress

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By Monique Larkin

Just a few of the class cancelations on the Riverside Campus. (Joshua Duran)

By Monique Larkin

Discontentment: It spreads throughout Riverside City College.

The word above is a strong word, but in special circumstances and when pertaining to a certain group of people, it can sum up every emotion.

Whether or not it’s parking, safety, the high prices of books and tuition, RCC students are put through enough.

George Granodo would say so. Two years at RCC would be a desired time spent, but as Granodo pointed out, that goal seems utterly impossible, especially when on the first day of this spring semester you find that your class has been canceled permanently.

“We are outraged, it’s so hard just to get a class, you know,” Granodo said. “It seems like every year it gets harder to get one. There are always so many conflicts. It feels like so much time is wasted when you can’t get the class you want.”

This statement is strongly said.

He meant every single word.

Each and every student at one time or another comes across some kind of frustration with RCC, but they are doing the best they can, right?

Board of Trustees member, Grace Slocum said she had heard about the uproar regarding class schedules through the grapevine. She said she knew that some of the faculty were upset, but she was unaware of how many students were.

“I am very concerned,” Slocum said. “I am concerned when the process is not student centered. We all need to be well-informed about the process of these things.”

Isn’t that something, the top dogs here at RCC, don’t even know the process of how class scheduling was handled this semester. Is it this way every single semester?

RCC President Daniel Castro revealed the process of how the class cancelations was to be handled so that on the first day of classes this semester, students were informed of what changes had occurred and were taking place.

It was to be handled as follows through a chain of verbal command: The department chairs were to inform the instructors of class cancelations, and then those instructors were to inform their students via telephone that their class had been canceled. The instructors were to suggest to their students other possible class sections that had more room for them.

This “process” was put into place so that no student would be misinformed and confused on the first day of class.

Granodo is one of those students who would beg to differ.

Many students came to RCC ready for the first day of spring semester, and they left frustrated, confused and without classes.

“Unfortunately, I take full responsibility for this,” Castro said.

Castro said that when the spring schedule was made, a group of administrators as well as staff at RCC increased the class , selection by 10 percent. However, enrollment has gone down 6-10 percent in the past year. Alas, causing the Lovekin Field’s “class cancelation permanently” cards on parade.

What were those administrators thinking?

Did they just think that if they increased the class selection in the spring catalogue that, boom, students would appear?

Or, rather did they even check the status of the RCC student enrollment?

Castro pointed out as to why so many classes had to be canceled for the semester.

“Several classes are functioning with less than 20 students enrolled in them, when the number of students that are to be enrolled is 27,” Castro said. “It costs a lot of money to run classes half-full. We have to try to save money, so that we can continue offering classes that students need to take for the next semester. We need to help plan for our future.” RCC Life Sciences Department chair, Terry Shaw commented saying that RCC has more demand than it has the capacity to meet.

“We can only offer so many sections without more facilities as well as instructors to teach those classes,” Shaw said.

But, how is RCC going to fix the problem now, instead of worrying so much about next semester.

Students are struggling now, today.

Quinn Lillestran sat in Lovekin Field getting ready for his political science class.

He did not have any problems enrolling in the classes for this semester in order for him to graduate next fall fortunate.

“I can see how this hurts many students, especially when you don’t have the class you need to take a certain semester,” Lillestran said. “It makes it harder to graduate on time.”

Michael Amrich, Department chair of chemistry said that his major concern was of how quickly the classes were canceled. He said that there should have been more time allowed for an adjustment to take place.

“RCC is traditionally lenient on the number of students it allows in the classroom,” Amrich said. “It is understood that we are building a reputation. We have to continue to let RCC grow, and we have to get a feel for what it is like before we can cut things short. We have to continually try and dodge bullets.”

Castro noted that new ways to offer more classes, thus increase enrollment have been implemented, such as RCC students being able to take night or weekend classes or enroll in the new upcoming eight-week semester instead of the 16-week traditional semester.

“We are trying our best to accommodate students,” Castro said.

We will have to wait and see if RCC remains student centered, or if it has lost it’s way only to validate the emotion that is felt without being said.

Thus, discontentment still lingers…

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