The Collegian
Friday, September 29, 2023

Class Warfare: A Registration Manifesto

Does your internet seem slower than ever? Do you find yourself crying at the smallest provocation? Have you hugged your adviser more than usual this past week? If yes, then you're in the midst of registration blues.

Karl Marx said that the history of all society is the history of class struggles. Within the isolated environment that is the University of Richmond, the registration process reveals the rifts between the privileged and the plebeians.

For the average Richmond student, registration means waking up around 6 a.m. to boot up one's computer, log into BannerWeb and stare at the clock while squeezing a stress ball. Once the clock hits 7:00, one must furiously begin punching in strings of numbers while fighting grogginess to remember arbitrary procedures. Forget to register for a lab section at the same time? Well too bad, that class just filled up. Post-registration feelings can range from "That went well" to "I guess I need to find a new major."

But there is a class above ours, fellow students; a group that need not wake up at 7 a.m. to register, and who get a jump on the rest of us in getting those precious class spots. They are the registration bourgeoisie: scholars and athletes.

Yes, scholars, a mix of the Richmond and Bonner groups, are allowed priority registration along with varsity athletes. I mean them no ill will; I count several scholars and athletes among my closest friends. But when it comes to registration, the struggle between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat surpasses mere friendship.

The scholars and athletes have earned their honors, and those whom I know are brilliant and talented. They have worked hard to have the privileges they receive, and I am not against their having them. In many cases, they even need priority registration: athletes need to schedule around demanding practice schedules, and scholars are often trying to fit five or six units into a semester. But I take offense with one part of their early registration benefits: They don't have to wake up early. Yes, athletes and scholars get to register at a reasonable 3 p.m. on their assigned day.

Imagine how much better you could click and type when you've had a chance to get some coffee, eat and finish crying! Registration efficiency could increase by as much as 50 percent! You might actually get into Behavioral Neuroscience or Neurobiology or whatever it's called, or be able to take the noon section of Microeconomics.

Several of these not-actually-despicable scholars and athletes whom I've talked with agree wholeheartedly with the injustice of the proletariat's early-morning ordeal. So let's do the reasonable thing here, and somewhat equalize the registration system: Either everyone gets up at 7 a.m., or everyone gets to sleep in and register after classes are done. Will you join in our childish crusade, or will you grin and bear it like a mature adult? The choice is yours.

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