An Idea on How Graduation Should be Handled

By Petyon MacKenzie, Columnist

Lead Image By: Cole Keister

Students across the U.S are facing new academic challenges; from moving online, not getting to walk the stage and be handed the diploma they have been working so hard for, students need to be focusing on the next steps in life. In order to achieve this, I am calling on the Lone Star College System to graduate those who are supposed to walk the stage in May. 

The plan: 

The LSC-System will graduate those in their last semester at LSC, and will not return to an online format on April 13th. 

Let’s discuss the plan in detail…

Who this will affect: 

This is specifically for those are in their last semester, and were graduating in May 2020. 

How they will receive credit for this semester:

Under the current term on their transcript will appear, “DISTRICT PASS” or “DISTRICT FAIL”. This means the semester will not impact the students GPA, but give them the necessary credit to attain their degree. Those who were counting on their current credits have the opportunity to go back to class on April 13th and continue their class to improve their GPA. At that point, they will be assigned a grade on a 4.0 scale, instead of a pass/fail credit. 

Under this time of uncertainty, graduating students need to be focusing on their next steps, where they will be in four months, not how they will graduate. Graduating those in their last semester with Lone Star not only gives them time to focus on the future but alleviates stress during these times of uncertainty. 

During an interview with campus president, Dr. Persson, she explained that this plan came up as “topic only”. This means it was mentioned, but not further discussed. 

I believe all possibilities should be discussed at this time. When I asked why they did not go with this pass or fail plan, she explained professors have the ability to give a student an “incomplete”, and this is probably why the pass or fail plan wasn’t discussed further. 

However, an incomplete does not reduce the stress of students but adds stress. Right now, students graduating from the Lone Star system are panicking about how they will finish their classes; will they be harder online? Will this transition hurt their GPA, where they won’t be able to transfer to their selected college or lose scholarship money? 

A professor adding in an incomplete on top of these worries doesn’t take the stress away, but in contrast, an incomplete would add stress because of the time frame they would be working on. An incomplete cuts into summer. A time students are using to move into their dorms, finalize their paperwork, sending in transcripts. An incomplete is prolonging these already established concerns. 

By implementing this pass or fail plan will give students what they need most; time. They can utilize this time to how they see fit. In the end, we need to come together during this time and understand that these concerns might be in every student’s mind, but essential to those going to a four year university during a pandemic. 

It is for all these reasons I urge the Lone Star System to graduate students in their final semester. 

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