Principia athletes train for their games and practice with their teams every day from 4:30-6:30 p.m. However, athletes make up only around 30 percent of the student body. So what does the other 70 percent of the student body do during that time? Starting spring semester 2015, some might be in a class.
This new class period will last from 4:40-5:50 p.m., right in the middle of the designated athletic period. Some athletes are not happy with this change, because they believe that having classes at this time will pull players away from team participation and necessary practices. “Teams [will] encounter the issue where if the players miss class then they suffer, but if they miss practice then the team suffers,” said junior Jaime Serna, captain of the rugby team.
However, the classes being offered during the 4:40-5:50 slot will not be required major classes. “These… will only be courses that are either a second section of a class, or a general education class that is one of many offerings of [a] general education lateral code… Or it [could] be just a true, pure elective,” said Assistant Dean Libby Schieren.
For example, Communication is an education class which fulfills a GESS requirement. It is usually offered in two or three time slots every semester, and is likely to be the type of class that would be offered during this new class period. Non-athlete students could take the 4:40-5:50 section, while athletes would take an earlier one.
“We are not trying to compete with athletics. What we are trying to do is offer courses for students who are not in athletics and who can take courses in the afternoon. This will allow faculty to have a little more flexibility and put a couple more classes in,” said Schieren.
She added, “There are many students who could benefit by having a course in that time slot because they don’t have any activities going on during that time.”
Junior Mallory Rosa, when asked about the new time slot, stated, “I know a lot of people who specifically make their schedule around timing and what time the class is taken… but I think the simple solution is if there are no major requirements during that time, then just don’t sign up for it.”
This new time slot will also make up for another long-lost class period. When the schedule was updated a few years ago, some 75-minute time slots in the middle of the day were cut in order to have longer lunch periods. With this schedule change, students were offered fewer options, because not all classes could be offered. However, the 4:40-5:50 slot may restore some of these choices.
“We hope for a… harmonious solution, that will meet the needs of many students,” Schieren said. “We don’t want students to have a conflict.”