Courtesy of Villanova University
Dearest Villanova Faculty and fellow students,
Someone once tweeted, “Life really is just one thing after another, isn’t it?”
While always relevant, this sentiment resonates more with students now as we all experience a turbulent election season, three weeks of midterms, a pandemic and the usual joys of college. And it’s not just us; college students across the country at schools like the University of Pennsylvania and Boston College are reporting high rates of fatigue and burnout.
The usual light in the middle of the tunnel, Fall Break, is extinguished.
In this spirit, we write to our beloved professors with a modest proposal: let’s cancel some classes. We, as students, recognize that with every assignment we spend hours working on, you have to grade 15-20 other versions of it. For every test we spend an hour taking, you spend at least three hours making. Your traditional time to rest and get caught up on grading, Fall Break, is now gone. We recognize that you spend months prepping your syllabus ahead of time and understand that cancelling classes is not possible in some cases. That’s okay.
We also understand that the University expects deliverables or some method of accountability during classes. We can work with that. In place of a normal class assignment, you can give us assignments like calling our grandparents, picking up a certain number of littered goods or registering someone to vote. Just call it alternative learning and cite some fake studies about it’s effectiveness. Father Peter doesn’t need to know.
With alternative learning assignments given, you could use the day to sleep in, spend time with your families, get some grading done or work on publications. What do you think? Let us know.
With much love and admiration,
Maggie Cavanaugh, Shannon Kauber, Ryan Henry, Andrew Kline, Belle Morgan, Steven Makino and Jack Roberge