Changes possible for May term

by Sheyenne Manning

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>Low May

term enrollment may cause housing changes and reduce the number of

classes in the future.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>Simpson

College Registrar Jody Ragan thinks that changes in housing,

activities and food services will be needed, but can’t determine

exactly what those changes may be.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>There is a

chance that housing will make a change if enrollment is low.

Director of Residence Life Luke Behaunek said students may be

condensed if there are only a couple students living in one

facility, but no plans are certain yet.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>“There’s

been some mention of contingency plans, say if for instance, in the

unlikely situation that there was only a handful of students in a

building, what we would do in that situation” Behaunek said.

“There’s been conversation, but there certainly hasn’t been any

definitive decisions been made on that topic yet.”

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>As they

stand now, May term courses do not have to fulfill requirements of

the Engaged Citizenship Curriculum or Cornerstone Curriculum

requirements, but that they may do so, Ragan said.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>“May term

courses have always been offered based upon demand and we continue

to evaluate class offerings based on student interest and need,”

Ragan said.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>However,

many courses are offered only every other year and may not be

available if the course professor is unavailable or unable to teach

during May term.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>

International travel courses appear to be unaffected by the changes

in May term.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>

International education coordinator Jay Wilkinson believes it’s

because travel courses are one way to fulfill a requirement.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>“It’s true

that students aren’t required to take May term (every year), but I

think international travel courses have never been something

students (feel obligated to take),” Wilkinson said.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>Originally

nine May term travel abroad courses were offered, but one was

eliminated due to a lack of response.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>Similar to

Ragan’s expectations, Wilkinson was not surprised that one course

was cut.

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“font-size: 11px;”> one to three courses may be cut

due to low enrollment. Much of this has to do with the popularity

of the course and how many students apply.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>This is

something Wilkinson expected because two of the more popular May

term courses weren’t offered: a madrigal course and Professor John

Epperson’s political science trip to Great Britain and Ireland.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>A madrigal

course typically means 30 to 40 more students will be signed up to

take that international travel course and Epperson’s class usually

has about the same number of students.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>May term

this year has about 70 fewer students than last year partially

because these courses weren’t offered and partially because of the

“uncertain economic situation” Wilkinson said.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>This isn’t

something Wilkinson is concerned about. He prefers to compare

equivalent years, which would be 2010, and there are about 20 more

students enrolled in international travel courses this coming May

term than there were in 2010.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>“There were

about 60 more students participating in international travel

courses last year that the current count for 2012,” Wilkinson


“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>Most agree

the economy has a great influence of whether students choose to

participate in May term, especially in a travel course.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>The Media

in D.C. travel course was unable to have two professors participate

and left Brian Steffen teaching JFK lectures on campus.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>There are

fewer students taking the study abroad trip, but Lucht hopes each

student will be able to gain a more intimate look at how the media

conducts itself in Washington D.C.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>“I want

them to have a chance to be exposed to some professional

environments, get a behind the scenes look at how journalism is

produced in the nation’s capital and I want them to have the chance

to ask questions about how that journalism is produced,” Lucht


“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>Two

professors for each study abroad trip is ideal, but like other

professors in this situation, Lucht and Steffen already had a plan

for who would be in charge of the trip if enrollment was low.

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>

 “The fees that students

pay cover the travel costs for instructors,” Wilkinson said. “For

some courses with relatively low enrollments, each student in the

course would be forced to pay too much if two professors

participated in the course,”

“margin-bottom: 12.0pt; text-align: left;” align=”left”>Many

courses are available until mid-January. These courses and others

can be found in the May term section of the study abroad