College strike squeezes exam deadlines, but dropping out is problematic

Concern over marks they'll receive after writing exams without having enough time to study or finish assignments has some Conestoga College students looking at the alternative: dropping out.

Things ‘got really screwed up,’ student says

Katie Redrup, facing the camera, is going to wait until the end of the second week of classes before deciding if she will drop out. (Flora Pan/CBC)

An imminent exam schedule and crushing assignment deadlines after the autumn college faculty strike ended are leading some Conestoga College students to consider dropping out of the semester. But the choice isn't so easy to make.

Katie Redrup, a first year student in pre-health sciences, said there are assignments and tests that were announced in September for mid-to-late November completion that are now due after only a couple of weeks of classes.

"Now it's like things are doubled."

She said she wasn't expecting a strike in her first year of school. The five-week long pause didn't help her morale.

"It's kind of defeating," she said. It took her a few years before deciding she wanted to go to college. With the strike, she said things "got really screwed up."

Dropping out

Is dropping out an option? She said she'll give herself a bit more time to judge whether her grades will suffer as a result of the condensed schedule and heavy workload.

If she leaves now, she will lose an entire academic year.

While not finishing her semester is a choice for Redrup, it isn't for a first-year software engineering technology student.

Kai Prince considered dropping out for financial reasons, but he has to stay because coming back next year won't be possible.

Kai Prince, a first year student, said he can't dropout and come back because the courses he needs are already full. (Flora Pan/CBC)

"Next year is completely booked and wait-listed," he said. The courses he would take next year have already filled up, and he has no choice but to grind through the rest of this semester into January.

However, he said his professors have handled the return-to-school well and made reasonable adjustments for tests and assignments.


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