A Change in Times
Miami Dade College has been forced to cut Saturday service for all student services departments due to funding limitations.
Student services departments include academic advisement and career services, financial aid, the testing department, student life, the bursar’s office and registration.
The change became effective Sept. 26, and was “wholly driven by budget constraints,” according to Malou Harrison, dean of students at the North Campus.
But Harrison added that Saturday service will be available during “peak” registration period, which includes the ten days before and the ten days after the beginning of each term.
The change will have the most consequence on students, who only have classes on Saturday and are unable to come to school during the week.
For Tory Samuel, 21, a criminal justice major, the change is a major inconvenience.
“Due to the fact of my work schedule, sometimes it is better for me to come on weekends and late on weekdays, preferably Friday,” Samuel said.
Harrison said that the changing economy has forced both public and private industries to make some difficult decisions.
“The change in operating hours is one such change in the large scheme of institutional decisions MDC has made, and my assessment is that students understand the times we’re living and operating in, and they have been able to adjust accordingly while remaining focused on meeting their educational goals,” Harrison said.
Sandra Martinez, director of advisement and career services, thinks that students will begin to take advantage of the evening hours currently provided by the student services departments.
Student services departments are open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Friday’s from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
According to Harrison, “with proper planning on the part of students, they will continue to benefit from advisement and other student services, all of which continue to be available mornings, afternoons and evenings.
The departments continue to balance a high volume of students, and, according to Harrison, all student services departments “continue to avail students of myriad options to visit the offices for advisement and services between classes, during lunch hours and after the typical work day that ends at 5 p.m.”
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