Class Blocking: An Infringement on Education?
By Sam Romero
FGCU, the sunny and environmental resort for many students in southwest Florida, showcases a gleaming sign on their main page saying, “Our comprehensive academic programs promote thorough scholarship and professional preparation while providing opportunities to explore interdisciplinary paths.”
With the rising number of students with undeclared majors or tossing between career paths, it is necessary for the school to maintain students’ ability to explore their future paths.
The expansion of course selection is crucial to explore future career paths. However, many FGCU regulations cause a halt to this.
Although I am a Journalism major, I’ve always had an inclination towards learning piano.
Ever since I was 12 years old, I would rip melodies to shreds with my fingertips. I’ve never had the ability to take a course in high school with the flood of AP courses and honors credits.
College would be different, though. After years of waiting, I could finally take MVK 1111, the FGCU piano course, and absorb all the knowledge I’ve desperately been waiting for.
However, after a meeting with my academic advisor, music courses are reserved only for Music Majors and Minors.
My options severely closed from the image of me sitting in front of the piano to sitting behind a cold desk in the only available class: World Music Cultures and Music Appreciation.
The trusty banner of “exploring interdisciplinary paths” officially closed on my dream.
Many students at FGCU have relied on adding minors and dropping them in order to take the class they want.
Even then, students with undeclared majors might not have access to some classes in certain majors that could propel them to a future career.
In 2019, a total headcount of 543 students were undeclared majors, according to the Board of Trustees Information System.
The number has been steadily rising throughout the years, with a total of 410 students in 2017, and 453 students in 2018.
With the number of undeclared majors rising and students with passionate dreams anxiously awaiting college to expand their education, FGCU sits in a position of power as the gatekeeper to educational endeavors.
Though Piano classes might be limited to Bower School of Music students only, FGCU should be able to offer introductory-level courses for students who’d like to take the class recreationally and out of curiosity.
In the meantime, students can expect to walk away from the school of music, and take their tuition dollars to the nearest Guitar Center shop in Fowler street.