Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Understand University Procedures

I found myself in a bit of a predicament when I went to register for Spring classes.

I'm taking a graduate seminar at the University of Arizona in Tucson this semester, so I am not currently enrolled at ASU. Before I did this I checked with my department, and I was told that I could take one semester off from ASU without any problems, but that if I took two or more off consecutively, I would need to re-apply and get admitted all over again.

It turns out that the person in the anthropology department was misinformed, and when I chose not to enroll this semester, I was dropped from the university. When I called to find out why I could not register, I was told that:

  1. I would need to fill out an all-new application to the university ("Better start it right now, sir."). This includes listing my high school, all colleges I attended...
  2. Because of a high volume of applications, I should not expect an answer (i.e., am I accepted) for at least three weeks...
  3. I would have to move to the latest catalog (i.e., my degree requirements might change)
  4. I should have filed a Leave of Absence form to avoid the whole mess.
The lesson here: Ask the right questions, at the right time, of the right people. Know the process at your university!

I have worked it all out, and I will be able to register. All is well, but it was a wild ride.

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