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Letter to the editor: The terror of semester system

Joan Tessalonika

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My first thought after reading this was, yes, we should do semester system if we want to drive students away.

Not all students who go to De Anza are over-achievers who want to graduate earlier.

A part of the students population consists of part-time students who have to juggle between family life and job(s) too. They will less likely have the time to commit to studying.

While I can’t argue with all the data that are presented in the case, here’s what I gather from the people I know (I’m a tutor in one of the tutoring centers and I have met all sorts of students here).

Think about people like Anne* who is the first in her family to ever attend college, but still has to work 3 jobs to afford to live and study here. Or Jane* who has 2 jobs and 2 kids to feed while their father is nowhere to be found.

These people benefit from quarter system due to its flexibility and speed.

They are able themselves to rearrange their schedules (eg: do a later shift at their job or send their children to daycare) in the condition that it only takes 12 weeks per quarter before being able to rearrange the schedule again to fit education in their lives.

Semester system doesn’t allow that freedom of flexibility.

And its not just about the part time students.

Full time students (and yes the overachievers too) benefit from the quarter system.

Quarter system also allows students to try so many more courses to be whole rounded people.

When John* came from Australia, he was dead set on studying Finance. But when he took Radiology for GE, you guys probably can guess what happened. And he’s not the only one to do that.

You know what? I think every school should change into quarter system instead!

*names have been changed

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