Editor’s Note: This story was written by Guy Cardinal.
Fall and spring semester classes aren’t the only options available for students at Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota.
Summer classes are offered from May 17 to July 16. This year, registration began on March 22.
Students can register by logging into their student portal account and clicking under registration. Anyone who is in good academic standing can register, said Dean of the College Susan Cosby Ronnenberg.
The classes are delivered fully online, with assignments being done over Canvas and exams being taken via LockDown Browser; there is no in-person instruction.
Sophomore Nicole Wierzba previously took a summer class with Dr. Row. “The workload was condensed and kind of similar to an asynchronous class,” said Wierzba.
Summer classes offer students the option to get ahead or make up classes. Students could take summer classes with the potential of graduating early. Jonathon Krull is a sophomore political science major who plans on doing just that.
With summers often being a busy time for students, the workload can be difficult to manage. Josh Janssen, a sophomore finance major, said the downside of taking summer classes is that it can be a lot of work. “The workload was hard taking two classes and working a job,” said Janssen.
The online nature of the classes can also pose a challenge for students. Michael Ratajcyzk, associate professor of business, said with the classes being all online there isn’t any professor-student interaction that you would get from an in-person class.
Saint Mary’s students are divided on whether they would recommend summer classes. “Homework was minimally one hour a day and the exams were tough,” said Janssen. “I would not do it again unless I really needed to.”
Wierzba said, “If they [students] were motivated to take the class seriously, I would recommend [it], but it is all on your own time, so it is sometimes overwhelming.”
Along with summer classes, students can also participate in internships for college credit. Krull plans to do a summer internship working for his congressional representative in Washington, D.C. Krull sees a lot of benefits to working and gaining experience through his internship. “Saint Mary’s has a really great internship program,” said Krull. “The professors are really helpful with it, they’ll give you recommendations on where to apply, tell you where previous students have applied, all that kind of stuff.”