EBA: a great idea with poor execution

It was impossible for any student to not hear the constant reminder to sign up for Early Bird Advising these past couple of months, between the occasional mention from instructors or one of the countless, incredibly colorful e-mails.

Students who took advantage of EBA were able to register for spring semester classes well ahead of the students who didn’t. This could be helpful, or it could be just one more thing for students to worry about.

There are many students who have a full plate. With classes, jobs, homework and other responsibilities, the last thing students want to worry about is having to gain access to early registration in hopes of getting the classes they need.

If a student speaks to an adviser in his or her major’s area, that can either be extremely helpful or a waste of time, especially if the student has participated in Early Bird Advising during a previous semester.

Unless a student has changed majors, EBA becomes redundant if he or she is required to participate each semester.

Likewise, the thing a transfer student will always hear is, “Go talk to the school you plan on transferring to.”

It is great for a student to speak with someone in his or her area. If the adviser truly cares, he or she can become an invaluable mentor for the student, not just academically, but also in career and life choices.

However, even though EBA is a great way to encourage students to speak with professors and begin planning their future, should EBA be a requirement for early registration?

Many other colleges and universities just provide students who are closer to graduation with priority registration.

Between the confusing e-mails about “Early, Early Bird Advising” and actual informational workshops to learn about EBA, it turned into being more of a headache rather than being helpful.

All and all, EBA is a great way to get students motivated to speak with advisers, but hopefully next time workshops won’t be needed to understand what is going on.