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Over the past few years, the academic calendar has become more spread out over the calendar year with larger gaps of non-academic engagement time. Simply put, it seems that an adjustment to the academic calendar could be implemented to provide:
Students a chance to retake courses in which they did not meet adequate academic standards;
Students an opportunity to complete courses that would allow them to advance in their coursework in a more timely manner.
Included with this proposal is a sample Academic Calendar for 2017-2018. Essentially, the outline of this revised calendar is:
i.) To move graduation in the Fall semester to the Saturday before the Christmas Holiday (usually 5-7 days prior to the university’s officially closed days).
ii.) To start the Spring semester the Monday before the Martin Luther King holiday in January.
iii.) To end the Spring semester, move graduation, to the last Saturday of April.
By incorporating these changes the month of May becomes available for a ‘Maymester’ (three weeks/ three hours each day) that will allow students a chance to maintain academic engagement before returning to their homes if they choose. A ‘Maymester’ could also allow for other intensively-focused learning opportunities (Faculty-led study abroad, internships, and externships etc.). Combined with tuition-driven models of instruction May becomes an opportunity for students and faculty to 'keep the doors open' to the university for continued learning opportunities.


David Rutledge

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