Last Friday, ISS officials announced that in response to an unidentified computer worm, several critical computer systems would need to be shut down. Citing that the worm had the potential to crack passwords stored on computers, the administration decided that it would need to take down the Banner system – the application responsible for managing class registration among other things – to safeguard it from the likely threat. Despite their best efforts to correct the problem, the system was only brought back online at noon Monday, at which time class registration resumed. However, a new series of problems arose once the system came back online.
Originally, the system was scheduled to come online at 10 a.m. Some students skipped their 9:30 classes so they could get the schedule they wanted. As 10 a.m. approached, the University announced that the problem would not be fixed until noon. As a result, students left classes early or did not go at all. This is an unacceptable situation.
The registration time was set at 7 a.m. for a reason; since no one has classes at that time, each student would have an equal opportunity to sign up for classes. Forcing students to choose between wasting money by skipping class or not being able to take classes in their major is not a choice an institution of higher learning should be mandating. Instead, the University should have pushed back the registration process by either a day or a week. Doing so would have ensured that students had a fair chance at registering for their classes.
In the future, the University should develop a sound plan to deal with potential security threats during class registration to ensure that some students do not find themselves at a disadvantage when selecting their classes for an upcoming semester.