Lacking clarity – Staff editorial

In the latest instance of GW miscommunication, students who thought they had enrolled in classes held in the Academic Center realized at the beginning of the semester that the classes actually were scheduled for the Mount Vernon campus. Students must have found themselves in quite a predicament – how would they get from a class at Mount Vernon to another class on the Foggy Bottom campus 10 minutes later? When they registered for classes, some students were unaware that some classes would be held at Mount Vernon. In this period of transition to a two-campus system, the University should have made more of an effort to inform students of the change.

With the increased emphasis on campus technology, students are using the GW Web site to look up classes when they plan their schedules. But the Web site did not list whether classes were slated in Foggy Bottom or on the Mount Vernon campus. The omission meant student unknowingly signed up for English, economics and statistics classes at Mount Vernon. The Web site, supposedly GW’s on-ramp to the information superhighway, should have been up to date. That sort of mistake should not happen again.

Mount Vernon offers students a variety of resources that have yet to be fully utilized. The missing registration information is a sign of transitional problems that accompany any other sort of merger. The University should devise ways to integrate freshmen who live in Foggy Bottom with Mount Vernon students so that both campuses truly can be one university. Requiring certain introductory classes on the Mount Vernon campus is a good way to put the integration process in high gear. But having those classes at Mount Vernon without letting students know is unacceptable. The University should continue to offer required classes at Mount Vernon, but it needs to clarify the locations before registration begins.

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