Each student at Pierce receives a credit evaluation two quarters before they graduate. This tells the students what courses they need to receive their degree.
The issue is how reliable the timing of the credit evaluation is being given to students when the information could allow them to be prepared for taking more classes that count before graduation.
If students only receive notice regarding credits when at the end of their long trek of earning degree, the issue is how students are supposed to know which credits they’ve earned and what category they go to.
Instructors and advisors don’t present this information during the mandatory meetings for students to get the registration numbers. Then, students are lost again in knowing the category for credits. When a student has earned enough credits, they’re transferred to one of the advisors in the Student Success Office to someone in the head of the departments, an instructor.
With this, students can email their new counselor and get the codes, not having to come in and speak with them about how classes are going or what the next step is in taking their classes.
Student Cindy Sage was ill-informed on her credits at the beginning of this quarter.
“One day my associate degree just showed up in the mail,” Sage said. “I had no idea that I had even graduated. Neither my counselor or the school notified me of it, I was told before the quarter even started that I had some more classes I needed to complete and then I would receive my degree.”
Since Sage already received her associate degree without knowing she had acquired the necessary credits, and already started classes her payment plan for this quarter is being taken into question.
“Since I am ex-military, I am paying for school with the GI bill and with already being graduated, based on what the school says, my payment for this quarter is being reviewed and if the federal government sees it as I already have a degree they will take away the GI bill and I will have to pay for this quarter myself,” Sage said.
With this happening to one person, the chances that it could happen to another is possible, and may question what procedures the school have for making sure that this doesn’t happen again.
It would be more convenient if students had constant access to the credits and their placement on the requirements of graduation without having to make an appointment with a counselor.
It couldn’t be that difficult for the Pierce Portal or even Canvas to have a program added so that when a quarter ends, the student’s credits are put into an online form to show what classes need to be taken next.
This could’ve been a very strange and horrible consequence that happened to Sage. With the school believing that the students should have a strong sense of independence and can gather the information themselves, there’s always the chance that something like this could occur again.
The Puyallup Post is the award-winning student news of Pierce College Puyallup in Puyallup, Washington. Copyright The Puyallup Post 2017. Twitter/Instagram @puyalluppost
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