The first week of school has already proven to be an ultimate test of patience and endurance for students in the past. New students involuntarily experience the registration woes they were warned about from former students, as returning students are reminded of how trying the registration process can be. However, Florida A&M’s administration has been making efforts to address frequent issues students are plagued with during the beginning of each semester.
FAMU’s latest, and most talked about, endeavor has been the One-Stop-Shop. The originator of the idea, Assistant Vice President of Academic Affairs Linda Miles, said she came up with One-Stop after witnessing the success of FAMU’s change of major fair. The fair offered a multitude of services for students at one location.
The purpose of the One-Stop-Shop was to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the registration process by housing all critical areas of student needs, in one facility.
“Students spend so much time walking around campus trying to find different locations, for each individual issue, when they could be spending that time in class,” Miles said.
From August 18th through the 26th,students were able to resolve almost any student issue, at the multi-purpose center gymnasium. Some of the services provided included assistance with academic advisement, iRattler access, registration and financial aid. Students filled the room and waited as they sat, stadium -style, for their turn to speak to an advisor.
This was the university’s first attempt at a process of this sort, and students had mixed reviews of its overall success.
Miesha Cooper, 19, a first year psychology student from Louisville, said she approached her first few days at FAMU with skepticism, as the horror stories told by her sister, a FAMU alumna, made Cooper wary of FAMU’s organizational proficiency.
“I already knew I was going to have some problems, but I had no idea it would be this unorganized,” Cooper said.
Cooper also mentioned having to wait two hours in the gym for student accounts assistance, only to find she had been sitting in the wrong section, and would have to wait in a different line.
” Our only guide for direction was a small sign taped to the back of a chair for each section, which could easily be overlooked,” Cooper said. “FAMU should keep the traditional way of doing things in the future: I’d rather go to each individual building than be confused about were I need to be in one building.”
Not all students thought the One-Stop-Shop was unsuccessful.
Third-year business administration student, Terron Bartley said he appreciated FAMU’s attempts to address its efficiency issues.
“In the past I remember having to travel from one side of the campus to another, in the hot sun, for issues as simple as getting an attendance hold removed,” Bartley said.
According to Bartley, he was pleasantly surprised to find all of his issues would be resolved in one day at one facility, not to mention the comfortable seating and cool air provided.
Miles is certain the One-Stop-Shop will continue to be used in the future, because of the overwhelming response to its effectiveness.
“The administration will be meeting soon to work on the improvements and changes for next year’s One-Stop” Miles said.