January Term, more commonly known as J-term, has been referred to in many different ways. Some refer to it as “Play-term.” Others may refer to J-term simply as a big party. Believe it or not, some students value J-term and see it as a great opportunity to reach requirements for their major or core curriculum. While there are many students that like and enjoy J-term, I have to say that I think that J-Term sucks.
Some students enjoy being here during J-term. If this sounds like you, let me remind you that while you are taking your J-term course for the first week, many of your friends at other schools are still sitting at home binge watching Netflix or playing their Playstation until their eyes are bloodshot. Likewise, while all of your friends from other schools are concluding the spring semester in the first week of May, you are still studying for finals.
Do not get me wrong, I get it. Many of you enjoy J-Term because there is plenty of time to party. If you are not an in season athlete, then there really is not much to do other than SPB events, intramurals, and going to class. So all that partying sounds real fun… until you wake up hung over and have to go to class at 9 a.m. the following day. If any of you discover liver failure in the future, you should consider that J-Term may be a contributing factor.
From an educational standpoint, J-Term does not seem very practical to me. One must become familiar with all subject matter of a course within a short three week period. Does anyone retain any information after their J-Term class is over? I am pretty certain that I learned more from watching “Planet Earth” on Netflix than I did in my Forestry Freshman Seminar Class years ago.
By the way, I hope that class does not still exist. If it does, I would suggest watching the “Planet Earth” series rather than taking the course. I would say it is more educational and far less expensive!
As you all can see, I have plenty of critiquing when it comes to J-term. However, I do offer some potential solutions. I am not going to suggest doing away with J-Term considering I would not really be breaking new ground. I would guess that literally everyone on this campus has already had that idea.
Instead, I am going to suggest some different, more practical courses be offered. If you have read my pieces in the past, you know how I feel about the lack of competent side walkers on this campus. Therefore, I suggest “Sidewalk Etiquette 101” be a required course. If you think that is absurd, I think a laundry instructional course should be offered. Believe it or not, there are some grown adults that still have never learned how to effectively do their own laundry.
Perhaps some of these courses will be incorporated into the Curriculum in the next few years. Maryville College will undoubtedly incorporate the laundry course into their curriculum once the community realizes that this institution graduates individuals who do not know how to complete this task.