Epic Failure! The Chaos of Spring Registration

USD Law student who didn't get into Professor Devitt's Evidence class.

Co-written by Christina Phan and Nikki Weil

Getting into Devitt’s Evidence class is a full-time job. You better have your finger on the trigger when registration opens because if you hesitate, even for a second, you kill your shot at a decent schedule. You hesitated, didn’t you? Well, the class you wanted is full. The waitlist is full. Now you’re stuck taking classes you don’t want with professors your friends warned you not to take. Doesn’t that just stink for you? This spring’s schedule is especially slim pickings.

Within minutes of registration opening up for the 3Ls, classes like Sports Law, Remedies, International Redress, Mediation Skills, Legal Drafting, Negotiations, International Negotiations, Religion and the Constitution, Law of American Democracy, Interviewing and Counseling, and Complex Litigation closed and became so full that the waitlists even closed. Yeah, you are right; we did pretty much list the entire spring class selections. The 2Ls watched this occur in utter dismay while several 3L Facebook statuses rejoiced in pure excitement for being able to receive most, if not all, of the classes and professors they wanted. As for 2Ls, what were we thinking . . . ? “DIE! DIE! DIE!”

At 7:12 a.m., Alexander Yen (3L) posted one simple statement to his Facebook . . . “Sports Law!!!” followed by a friend’s comment at 7:45 a.m. “Did I really just get every class I wanted? What the . . .” Well, as a 2L, all I have to say to these people is, “I want to punch you in the jugular.” I couldn’t even get onto the waitlist for some of my classes. And beloved Brooks will be visiting at another school after this year. Therefore, I will not be able to enjoy another class with him before I graduate. Further, I am also utterly depressed that Lady McGowan is only teaching 1L classes this semester. Sad day!

According to scientists, if we had encountered this type of registration calamity many thousands of years ago, our sadness would have looked like this.

But life is not all carefree and dandy for 3Ls. In one of my classes, a frustrated 3L student came to class after registration, sat down, hair frazzled, and stated that her computer froze and she did not get any classes she needed because they filled up, and now she does not have enough units to GRADUATE. She can only take classes on Monday and Wednesday because the other days she’ll be up in Malibu working for a law firm. After a rigorous meeting with administration and the registrar’s office, all she received was feedback that they would try their best to help her with her schedule. Personally, it would be nice to have more class offerings, more sections of popular classes, upper level bar classes that are not scheduled at the same time, and less disparity in the teaching quality of our faculty team.

*Note: I find that our overall faculty is fantastic and fun and dynamic, but there are some interesting apples that are clearly less popular. With a new Dean coming in, the goal should be to ramp up on our professors and ensure less disparity. Every professor should be equally sought after. Further, more classes, more sections, less “We’ll try our best,” and more “We WILL fix it.”

The drama does not stop there; did you know that students are not allowed to take both Negotiations and International Negotiations at the same time? Yeah, neither did most other students because the information was not common knowledge nor listed anywhere easily found. Well, a few 3Ls who registered for both classes were forced to drop one. Sucks for them! 2Ls, don’t get too excited because once these boys dropped, the waitlist bulked up again, and the classes are still too full to even add onto the waitlist. FAIL, again.

As the days passed, classes continued to fill up, and waitlists completely closed out. 2Ls frantically worked to retool their schedules because their 1st choice, 2nd choice, and likely 3rd choice schedules were filled out and pathetic before registration even opened.

Five days after 3L registration, 2Ls were ready to play at 6:45 a.m. (maybe earlier). Facebook was on full fire with intimidation slurs passed through chat and status updates. Finger exercises commenced to ensure the trigger finger was working lightning quick, and when 6:59 turned to 7:00 a.m., the refresh button was clicked, fingers quickly typed the numbers in and pressed submit and . . . horror ensued!

USD Law 2L who didn't get into Crime: The People, The Process

Constitutional Law with Semitsu; Criminal Procedure I; High Tech Start-Ups; International Environmental Law; International Civil Litigation; Crime: The People, The Process; Tax I; the Trust & Estates series; White Collar Crime; Work, Welfare, and Justice; Corporations and all of the writing classes completely closed out to the max. Tears of frustration and pain echoed through the San Diego morning fog, and Facebook once again lit up with action. Words of consolation were sent out to those who failed to adequately practice their finger skills. The one and only Kevin Kwon gave brilliant advice: “The key to getting your classes: picking the ones no one wants.”

This spring semester, just about every class is full to the max, students are frustrated, 3Ls are stressed, and EPIC FAIL rules the day. For the next month before the spring semester starts, students must hope, pray, and possibly intimidate their fellow students into dropping classes so they may receive a decent, workable schedule. Motions has no clear advice on how to maneuver this chaos, except to recommend making a habit of checking the class offerings at least three times a day in hopes that at least a waitlist will open up. We also refer you to the wise words of Kevin Kwon.

We would like to clearly note that we do not recommend nor condone intimidation of any sort. However, we understand logic dictates that the more people who drop, the more likely you will get your class. But remember, if you’re a jerk to your peers, they will remember, and you will not get a job! Good luck, and happy hunting!

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