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The Early Bird Gets to Learn

Except for students who play on sports teams with early practices or those who are in ROTC, most undergrads don’t wake up early. It’s just not part of college life. However, every semester there’s an exception: course pre-enrollment. It starts on a Tuesday morning at 6:30, when the online enrollment system opens, and it ends […]

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Except for students who play on sports teams with early practices or those who are in ROTC, most undergrads don’t wake up early. It’s just not part of college life. However, every semester there’s an exception: course pre-enrollment. It starts on a Tuesday morning at 6:30, when the online enrollment system opens, and it ends at 4:30 the following Thursday afternoon. The exact dates depend on your class year; seniors choose during the first week, followed by each subsequent class.

We roll out of bed at 6:30 because the most popular classes fill up immediately, and we must compete to get the schedule we want. For example, to get into Introduction to Wines, you have to enroll right when the system opens or wind up on the waitlist. When I was pre-enrolling this semester, I found out that the Hotel school’s intro culinary class is similar to the wines course in its fierce competition—and unfortunately, I didn’t make it. And there’s plenty of people vying for spots in creative writing, art, and foreign language classes, just to mention a few.

Still, pre-enrollment creates a common bond for undergrads. Every student has to get out of bed early for it during at least one semester of their college careers—and we all know the excitement of beating the competition and getting into our favorite course.

— Jamie Leonard ’09
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