I'm a senior in college and I'd love to graduate next May, since that's been my plan for the last 3 years or so. My major is physiology, and 90% of the students are pre-med or pre-something involving medicine. In order to make sure that all the students actually get to go to graduate school, the advisers in my major are particularly careful about
a. They were always scheduled during labs that I really couldn't miss, and
b. I was 20 years old and perfectly capable of knowing what classes I needed to take without having them hold my hand the whole way.
I think I made a good decision- people who did keep going to every session ended up taking extraneous classes that didn't benefit them, or they were put into panic mode by the advisers freaking out if they decided to take Organic Chemistry in the spring rather than the fall. Now, senior year, they're neurotic and cannot make a decision without first emailing the adviser 30 times, while I am independent and happy. ;)
The Bad Service:
Now that it's senior year, our scheduling sessions are more or less the same, but they're renamed "graduation sessions." I can no longer avoid their ineptitude; I have to really, truly meet with an adviser and have her look at my schedule and confirm that I did take all the classes I need and that I can graduate in May. No problem. I know it will be a quick, 10 minute visit- she sees my schedule, probably makes a snide remark about my 3.3 GPA not getting me anywhere (you'd think I'm exaggerating, but it's true), and then freaks out when she sees I haven't taken a Critical Thinking course, at which point I will say that I plan on taking it in the spring like I've always meant to. No big deal.
*logs onto college website* Let's see when the graduation sessions are.
Hmm. Can't do Tuesday mornings, I have Anatomy lab with no make-up sessions.
Thursday mornings are a no-go either, that's also Anatomy lab.
Haha, Thursday evenings? Are you kidding? Cell phys lab.
Okay, let's check next month instead. Surely they've switched up the days so it's not just Tuesday/Thursday. SURPRISE SURPRISE, same 3 slots all the way through this semester. Alright, fine, I'll call and make an individual appointment.
*dial, call, small talk, etc.*
Me: Hi, I'm a senior that's graduating next May, and I wanted to meet with you for a graduation session. I can't make it to any of the Tuesday/Thursday sections because those are my busiest days with class.
Adviser: They aren't optional, you have to go to one.
Me: ...I know, and it says on the site that we can try making an individual appointment if they don't work for us.
Adviser: (sighs louder than necessary) I know Thursdays are big party days on campus but these meetings are important and it's essential that you come to one.
Me: ...The reason I can't come on Thursdays isn't because I'd rather be out drinking (Note: Actually, I probably would), it's because I have a lab on those evenings.
Adviser: Hmm, sure. (Me: >:| !!!) I can probably get you in on the Tuesday that's 2 weeks from now.
Me: I can't do Tuesdays or Thursdays, I have all my classes on those two days. Otherwise I could probably make it to one of the group sessions. I could come in any time on Monday or Friday, or any time after noon on Wednesday.
Adviser: (Unnecessarily Loud Sigh #2) Hold on.
Insert a good 7 minutes of silence while I hear background clacking (typing?) while she presumably searches her schedule for a single spot on Monday, Wednesday, or Friday for me.
Adviser: You really need to just come in to the group session.
Me: (Starting to enter customer suck mode, I know.) Are you telling me that you have no openings on 3 days of the week between now and December?
Adviser: The majority of those are walk-in times or reserved for scheduling sessions with freshmen.
Me: I was told that seniors had first priority when it came to appointments after the start of the semester...?
Adviser: We try to make sure that the freshmen get individual appointments to help plan their schedule when they can't make it to group sessions.
Me: O__O But that's exactly what my problem is, except according to the site I can't graduate until I get you to sign off on my transcript.
Adviser: Yes, and that's why the graduation session is mandatory.
Me: *brain implodes* ...can I just do a walk-in to have you look at my schedule?
Adviser: No, these are appointment-only meetings.
Me: So between now and December, the department is only offering this on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and I can't meet with you on the other 3 days of the week because you already have appointments with freshmen with the same problem.
Me: And the difference between myself and them is that if they can't meet with you, they might have to miss a day of one intro-level class. And if I can't meet with you, I miss a mandatory upper division lab that I can't make up, and I don't graduate.
Adviser: I have an appointment starting now, but if you can't figure it out, email me or speak to the other IPHY adviser.
Me: >:| !!!! ...yeah, okay.
This happened about an hour ago, and I'm still boggling/fuming over it. I'll give myself another hour to calm down, and then I'll try the other adviser who isn't technically mine, but who may be more awake and able to make a single 10 minute appointment.
Seriously, I hate sounding entitled, but the whole "seniors get priority over freshmen" thing has been in effect since I came here. Why is it suddenly backwards/ignored when I need it the most?
Edit: Called him, was able to make the appointment in under 5 minutes over the phone. Asked whether he was busy with freshmen appointments for the rest of the semester and he had a "Bwuh?" moment, saying that barely any freshmen bother to do individual appointments. I don't recognize him- apparently the old "second adviser" is gone and he's the new guy. He seems 100x more competent than the two women I've had to work with in the past.
In other words, I just have a really stupid, or really lazy adviser. Lucky me!