SJGC students scramble to get required courses

The SJGC building on FAMU’s campus. Photo courtesy: Rattler Nation

As the spring 2023 semester began, students in Florida A&M University’s School of Journalism & Graphic Communication were having a hard time getting enrolled in required courses. Some were in a near-panic because without those required courses, they won’t be eligible to apply for graduation this semester.

Beyla Walker, a graduating senior at FAMU, experienced issues when trying to enroll into an oral engagement course she needed — although it wasn’t actually being offered by FAMU this semester due to a lack of instructors.

“There was an email sent out for students to submit the courses they needed and oral engagement was one of the top courses we needed in order to graduate,” Walker said. “They ended up opening the course and having to find a qualified instructor to teach the course.

“In the future, I hope more qualified people apply to teach at FAMU. Maybe that way we as students don’t have to stress so much about completing graduation requirements.”

It seems a lack of instructors isn’t the only issue SJGC  is facing. There is also a lack of advisers for the school. During the fall semester, both of the assigned advisers either left or got promoted, leaving SJGC scrambling to hire more qualified individuals to assist in everyday student needs.

Robert Tucker II, a senior broadcast journalism major, was unable to find the necessary courses he needed and he also was without help in figuring out a solution.

“I believe the lack of advisers was a pivotal issue in getting my classes situated, along with other things,” Tucker said. “I had to go and speak to every administrator in the School of Journalism and Graphic Communication to figure out the matter. When I spoke with them, I also had to provide them with a list of over a dozen student names who were upset with potentially being set back. It was at that point it became a must that they found a way to make things better,” he said.

One would think the chaotic start to the new semester would end there, but a few students experienced even more dramatic experiences.

Khalyn Harris, a graduating senior, had an almost unthinkable thing happen while she was trying to swap a course into one of the required courses.

“I was trying to switch one of my classes so that I can have all of the required courses I needed for graduation when my adviser just disappeared and never responded to me,” Harris said. “I had to go to the head of the school to get assistance and even then I had to wait three to four days before someone reached out to help.”