The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

Deadlines fast approaching: what students need to know

As the semester begins, many important academic deadlines emerge. 

For students who would prefer another class instead of one currently scheduled, determining the deadlines for dropping or adding a course is imperative. 

As the semester progresses, students may find themselves struggling in a course, in which they will need to be aware of the deadline for dropping with a ‘W’ grade. 

For soon-to-be graduates, awareness of when to apply for graduation is critical in avoiding unnecessary fees. 

Many students fail to meet these essential dates when making these necessary decisions. 

Dr. Peter Ryan, associate provost at Mississippi State University, urges students to be alert in regards to important University deadlines.

“The Registrar’s office reminds students about [graduation] in emails, and yet, last spring, we [had an example of] a student who never registered,” Ryan said. “She thought walking across the platform at commencement was graduating. That puzzles me for students who have been here for four years and have not appreciated what is involved with graduating.”

Not being aware of important dates can have far reaching consequences. Ryan spoke of incidents involving students who, due to delayed degree applications, missed out on job opportunities. In addition, there are monetary penalties for students who delay their degree applications. As of current, the base fee of $50  covers auditing, graduation fees and commencement ceremony fees. However, the longer a student waits to apply, the faster the University has to audit and process the application resulting in a higher fee. 

Ryan urges students to understand that the University is looking out for the best interest of students. It is the goal of the University for every student to be successful. This warrants the clear and concise deadlines the University seeks to establish. 

“We want students that are recruited here, to be successful and graduate,” Ryan said. 

Often, a student may find themselves struggling in a course, or preferring to take the course in a different semester. Therefore, Ryan reinforces the importance of understanding when the deadline is to drop a class with a ‘W’ grade. 

“The last day to drop a class with a ‘W’ is 36 days into the semester,” Ryan said. “We’ve extended that, [which] was a request from the Student Association last year. We did that so students can make an informed decision, and have the opportunity to have at least one assessment, if not more, [before doing so].”

For junior Sara Kirkpatrick, from Elkhorn, Alabama, and a double major in English and Spanish, the opportunity to take a ‘W’ grade helped her immensely. 

“About two months into the semester, I changed my major to English; and I was [struggling in] chemistry and calculus, and thus I dropped calculus with a ‘W,’ [helping] me pass chemistry,” Kirkpatrick said. 

Invoking academic forgiveness is another option for students who find themselves struggling in a class when the ‘W’ drop date has passed. If this occurs, students should be in contact with their advisers and undergraduate coordinator to utilize academic forgiveness, which can be done up to two times.   

For students considering a full withdrawal from the university, it is especially necessary that the pertaining deadlines be met. If a student withdraws after a certain date, their financial aid can be irreversibly affected. Ryan requests students considering wiathdrawal seek counseling from their adviser and set up a plan for when they wish to return to the University. Students should also speak with the Registrar’s office regarding financial aid, and how a withdrawal may affect their refunds. 

Lastly, Dr. Ryan stresses communication with an individual and their department faculty.

“Communicate with your adviser, and get the help you need,” Ryan said. 

The important academic deadlines for the spring 2017 semester are as follows: 

March 10 is the last day to apply for May 2017 graduation with the applicable $50 fee. All applications are considered late up to April 26, and are subject to additional fees. 

Feb. 28 is the last day to drop a course with a ‘W’ grade on a student’s transcript. 

The last day to withdraw from the University is April 11. 

And for more information regarding these important dates, students can contact the Registrar’s office at (662)-325-2022 and the Controller’s office at (662)-325-2302

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The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University
Deadlines fast approaching: what students need to know