Degree evaluations cause concern among departments

Amanda Pollard

Every May, students eagerly pay for their caps and gowns, call their loved ones and walk the line to graduation.

However, for many students, the road to graduation is paved with sleepless nights and countless worried phone calls to ensure timely progress.

Students are required to apply for graduation one year prior to the date they wish to graduate. Once a student has applied, the Department of Degree Evaluations is expected to notify the student the following semester of the units and classes they are required to take before graduation.

As enrollment increases, some feel that the late receipt of degree evaluations will inevitably become a problem.

Dawn Futrell-Schilling, the administrative office coordinator in the child development department, said the issue is growing due to understaffing of the department.

“(Understaffing) is an epidemic on campus. Staff are leaving and we aren’t replacing them,” Futrell-Schilling said.

In addition, Futrell-Schilling advises students to not sit by as they are kept uninformed.

“My suggestion is if students don’t receive them on time, by the end of the semester after you turn it in, contact the office,” Futrell-Schilling said.

Debbie Mullin, coordinator in the advising center of the department of criminal justice, said the main problem students face is that they find out they are missing a requirement to graduate too late.

When this is the case, it is the department’s fault. The students have no option but to continue to finish the requirements.

Undergraduate business Advising Center Interim Coordinator Maria Lindstrom said she is unclear as to why the problem is occurring but her department has also been facing the issue.

The issue of degree evaluations arriving late is a problem that touches every department, however, the exact number of effected students is confidential.

The Office of Degree Evaluations is closed until the end of March, but students who have no yet received an evaluation are encouraged to alert their department.

Amanda Pollard can be reached at [email protected].