Students scramble to add classes

Nessa Hessami

Due to a lack of extra seating and sections, many Sacramento State students are finding it difficult to add classes to their schedules this fall.

University statistics have student enrollment projected at a record high of more than 27,000. Several professors said sections were added to compensate, particularly in the lower division general education area.

“The number of students this fall is not a big surprise to the campus. We have a large increase this year, but we saw it coming and budgeted accordingly,” said Nancy Shulock, associate vice president of Academic Affairs.

Nonetheless, students say they?re being turned away because there is no room available.”I have a film class on Monday nights, and the professor only accepts add slips if you are a graduating senior, or are majoring in the department,” said junior Michael Smith. “He wouldn?t take any juniors.”

Students are experiencing the crunch not only in the classrooms, but also via Casper.

“I accidentally dropped the wrong class on Casper, and by the time I went back to add it again, within only a few seconds, my class was full,” said senior Scott Kugler. “It amazed me how quickly the class filled up; it took less than a minute for someone else to grab my spot.”

The problems may lie more with student procrastination than the availability of classrooms and sections, said Nancy Tooker, associate dean for the College of Arts and Letters.

“Students need to understand the importance of registering on time when Casper lines first open,” Tooker said, “and maybe there wouldn?t be such a bind for classes once the semester begins.”

Tooker said that many adjustments were made to accommodate the high numbers of students, including extra English composition, Art and Communications Studies sections. But once school is in session, it becomes more difficult to open new classes.

“Once the semester begins, it is difficult to find qualified instructors for opening extra sections,” Tooker said.

Shulock said many majors are growing, which is why students may have had difficulty getting into specific classes this fall. She said the growing popularity of the graphic design major, and the subsequent additions that have been made to accommodate enrollment, is an example of departments adjusting to student needs.

“We can never predict the patterns of classes students will take, but a lot of adjustments have been made in (general education) already,” Shulock said.

Tooker said the fact that enrollment is so high this semester doesn?t make this semester any different from others when it comes to the availability of lower division classes.”Regardless of the numbers, we would never be able to satisfy the demand for the lower division GE classes, especially the classes freshman take,” Tooker said. “However, I am glad we got to facilitate the way we have so far.”