There was an article titled “Discrepancies in the University-101 curriculum” in last week’s edition of The Slate. While reading, I was dismayed by a series of quotes attributed to Alex Karlheim, the director of Shippensburg’s First Year Experience.
The article contains multiple quotes from Karlheim, but it ends with one I find particularly objectionable. It draws a comparison between students’ frustrations and toddlers refusing to eat their vegetables.
As students, we are paying tuition for this required course and should expect a quality education out of it. For many, that does not seem to be happening. The article quotes several students frustrated with the quality of UNIV 101, referencing real issues with how the course is often taught.
My own experience with UNIV 101 in Fall 2019 was filled with controversy. Our disinterested professor spent days talking about the presence of black bears in York and once ranted about the ineffectiveness of vaccines. He was eventually replaced as the instructor of the course, but it took until the last few weeks of the semester.
My experience might be a bit more extreme than most, but I think the fact many students feel so dissatisfied with their experience with UNIV 101 speaks to an issue with the program. When these issues are brought forward, students should be treated with the respect that we deserve as adults paying for an education, not compared to picky toddlers.