Opinion: I am part of the resistance inside the Registrar’s Office

Illustration by Raya Deussen

*The Backdoor is a work of fiction and humor

By Anonymous

The Office of the Registrar is facing a test to its authority unlike any faced by a Lewis & Clark College department.

It’s not just that the DSAs are gone. Or that the quality of The Bon’s food is such that some students are calling their meal plans “the most expensive diet I’ve never wanted to try.” Or that Wiewel was preceded by a president known for his ability to become a meme, and a small group of students will not let him forget it.

The dilemma — which no one fully grasps — is that many of the student workers in the Registrar’s Office are working diligently from within to help students get into the classes they want.

To be clear, the Registrar faculty do what they can to help. But they have limits, both in what they can do legally and morally. A freshman wants in on the 300 Fiction class, OK. We understand turning them away. But what of the seniors who need one more class to graduate, or the prerequisites people need to proceed with their major?

We believe our first duty is to ourselves and then our second duty is to other students. Class size capacities, registration times, and class sections continue to work against our desires as students.

That is why many of the student workers in the Registrar’s Office have vowed to get fellow students into the classes they need, and ignore some of the college’s more stringent policies.

Registrar faculty has cited “fire code,” “limited resources,” and “we just don’t have an Astrophysics department, please stop asking for the observatory to be open to the student body” as reasons why there must be restraints to our academic dreams. We say, “pull up a few more chairs. There’s table space for everyone.”

Don’t get me wrong. There are a few bright spots in the near-ceaseless dredge of stress that comes with registering for a new semester: another section of Pilates, fantastic new guest professors, an adequate registration scheduling system and … mm, that’s it, actually.

“There is absolutely no way they’re going to be able to fit the 120 people on the waitlist for Bio 141.

“It’s a sixty-person class,” one junior recently complained to their friend, exasperated after trying to get into a lab science, any lab science, for the fourth semester in a row.

It may be ultimately useless to know, but LC students should know that there are children in the room. We fully recognize the importance of being able to get any class one wants even if the faculty won’t.

Of course, the Registrar faculty always finds the “computer errors” a few days into the semester. This is why classes shrink thrice in size as soon as the add/drop period ends.

We cannot help everyone, try as we might. The Art of Tea is still a myth to many. The real difference will be made by the students who drop their placeholder class while they wait for the one they really want to work out. You cause so much unnecessary anguish to people on the waitlist. Stop it.


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