As course registration comes around, student athletes weighed in on their priority lottery times for scheduling classes.
According to Tom Richard of the Keene State College Registrar’s Office, the athletic department initially requested for student athletes to receive priority registration times.
Richard stated that this request came about so that athletes can work with their practice, game and travel schedule, while still being able to take the classes they need in order to graduate on time.
When it comes time for the Registrar’s Office to notify students about when they are eligible to register for classes, Richard clarified that student athletes are not automatically put ahead of the other students.
“We apply priority registration to only in-season athletes, after verifying who the eligible student athletes are. The athlete priority registration is limited to registration priority ahead of their respective class, as opposed to automatically going ahead of all students,” Richard stated.
As students scramble to figure out what will work best with their practice schedules, coaches do the same to work with their players’ classes.
Men’s Basketball Head Coach Rob Colbert explained, “Because we have a facility that is shared by multiple groups, we try to come up with a generic schedule each semester for when we would like to practice,” he continued, “Priority registration enables most of the players to meet that time. The players are going to represent the school, so I think that it is important for them to get the classes they need at the times they need, so that they can still participate in athletics.”
Colbert continued, “As the players get older, maybe there are classes that offer only one or two sections, so that comes first. I have all my kids’ [athletes’] schedules and I will know which nights we can or cannot practice based on who has night classes.”
However, Colbert said that most of the time when players miss practice it is because certain majors have night classes and those are the only times those classes are taught.
“Sometimes kids miss practice. If they miss it, they miss it. They are here for their education,” Colbert said.
Colbert said that priority registration times are established to ensure that the student athletes can continue to be students while still being able to be part of a team.
“Education comes first,” Colbert said.
Former women’s basketball player and senior, Rachael Brucks, said, “Priority registration times help us get the classes that we need and plan accordingly with our set practice schedules.”
“Coaches are usually understanding if we have to miss practice for a class because we are student-athletes. Some of our players would go to their classes and then try to get to practice right after,” Brucks said.
She continued, “A teammate or two will usually stay after practice with them if we went over a new play or something, while they were not there,” Brucks said.
“Priority registration time allows me to plan accordingly to my practice schedule. It also makes choosing classes less stressful for me, ” Amber Long, a member of the women’s swim and dive team, said.
“For swimming, we have different practices during the day, so if I want to take a class during one practice I’ll just go to a different one,” Long said.
She continued, “Our coach does not care if we plan around our classes, he only cares if we completely miss practice.”
Along with allowing student athletes to be able to plan accordingly with their practice schedules, priority registration also helps reduce their stress levels.
Junior Rebecca Marquis of the cheerleading team stated that priority registration has helped her avoid problems with getting into her classes.
“Priority registration takes away the stress of registration. I do not have to worry about finding other classes if mine are full, or worry about taking a class that will conflict with my practice schedule,” Marquis said.
“It helps me not worry,” Marquis said.
Brogan Wessell can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org