ROTC MS Class Conflicts with Required Class for Major

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by AROTC Parent, Aug 28, 2012.

  1. AROTC Parent

    AROTC Parent Member

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    To the Cadre and ROTC Staff on this Forum:

    Any thoughts or suggestions as to what alternatives are available if classes required to graduate conflict with MS III Classes?

    The MS class is available in one of two time slots-at different schools. One of the two science classes is only offered every other year. The other is a year long course and is a prerequisite for a class Sr year. Both classes are required for graduation. Both classes conflict with the two MS III classes available.

    Cadre has been consulted by cadet but alternatives that will allow graduation on time and completion of ROTC requirements have not been identified.

    It's becoming clear why so many ROTC students don't continue in physical sciences and engineering as a major.

    Again, any thoughts or suggestions as to what alternatives are available? Online courses, independent study, ??????

    Thanks
     
  2. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    My son had the same issue when registering for this Fall's classes. Foriegn Language is required for my son's major, he is now a sophomore, the only class offered was at the same time as the MS Lab. To keep on schedule he decided to take the Independent Study Class online. Once he completes that class he will be able to sign up for the class next semester as long as it does not conflict. The one downside was that he had to pay for the Independent Study Class on his own, he is checking to see if the Army will pay for it due to the schedule conflict, not holding our breath.

    I would continue to have your son talk with the cadre to see if there is a way to work it out so he can fit everything in.

    Best of luck.
     
  3. Jcc123

    Jcc123 Member

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    My son, also an MSII, has a required Biochem lab that is only offered once per week, at the same time as the MSII class. He was allowed to register for the MSII class anyway, but will actually do it as independent study. He had to get a permit approved in order for the system to allow him to register for two classes that meet at the same time.
    He will then meet one-on-one with the MSII instructor once a week for an hour or so, depending on what is being covered in class that week. Luckily , there was no conflict with ROTC lab, which would have been much harder to work around.
     
  4. bdaMom

    bdaMom Member

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    Our son ran into conflicts as well. Ended up taking Physics crammed into a summer semester to get it in. Not a great option, but it worked.
     
  5. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    Cadre worked around my schedule MSIII/IV year because my nurses classes were sequential and only offered at one time. They just offered an alternative class time for people to show up and go over the topics we missed in the regular class.

    It wasn't a big deal, but hey it may change depending on the batt. I mean lets be honest a MS class isn't exactly rocket science and could easily be taught on the side or even in one of the cadre's office. I am sure there others with conflicts as well.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2012
  6. goaliedad

    goaliedad Parent

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    Ultimately, the Cadre will have to sign off on the 104R, so if an extra semester (assuming here that the year-long class can be taken with one of the MSIII class sections) is required, they will have to sign off on it.

    What surprises me is that this issue hasn't been resolved to this point. Usually course schedules for the fall term (I assume here that we are talking about the Fall term) come out in the Winter. Cadet gets his advisor signoff and takes it to Cadre for signoff before enrollment begins, typically.

    A cadet should have been enrolling sometime 6 months ago. This question should have been settled back then. Why is this coming to light now?
     
  7. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    ROTC classes are often scheduled TBA by instructor and cadets like me have no clue when MS class is until school starts. He probably just started his first week and was like "uh ohhh" when he saw the conflict
     
  8. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    That's the same way it works at my son's battalion. They schedule the classe times at the beginning of the semester and then sometimes rearrange the schedule to fit what works best with all the cadets.
     
  9. AROTC Parent

    AROTC Parent Member

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    Thank you for the input.

    Summer school is not an option. These upper level sciences are not offered in the summer.

    As Aglahad indicated the ROTC extension course schedule was not published until one week ago with days and times.....and one was wrong.

    New Cadre was aware of the conflict potential in March based on last years schedule but the 104R does not include class times.

    It will all work out in the end...hopefully. Likely meeting with the PMS tomorrow.

    Additional input is always welcome.
     
  10. goaliedad

    goaliedad Parent

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    Interesting. I remember that my daughter's battallion does their MSIII (her year) at one campus (small battallion), but they do it Tuesday evening (1800-2100)and provide transportation. IIRC it was scheduled for evening last spring, the only unknown was which campus.

    That being said, they have their campus lab time Tuesday morning 0630-0830. Makes for a long day when most of her other classes are Tu-Th classes.
     
  11. clarksonarmy

    clarksonarmy Recruiting Operations Officer at Clarkson Army

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    This is a very Battalion specific question. I would tell you at Clarkson we are very flexible regarding conflicts, and in return we have one of the highest production rates for STEMs in the Brigade (how's that for a selling point). Hopefully other Battalion's out there give the same consideration to their cadets, but if they don't, and want to be sticklers about contractual obligation things could be difficult.

    Good luck.
     
  12. laxmom8

    laxmom8 Member

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    My son has also had a schedule conflict appear two days into his first semester. He had to drop a class and add a different one because of a conflict with the lab (which is in the afternoon.) Aren't labs usually scheduled for the mornings?
     
  13. dunninla

    dunninla Member

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    The size of the college has everything to do with class flexibility. Small colleges don't have enough students to offer multiple time options for most classes other than freshman English, Math, and intro courses to most classes. It's one of the real downsides of Liberal Arts Colleges, balanced of course by the attraction of high Professorial interaction and mentoring. At smaller colleges, as soon as you get to Course #2 or #3 in a subject's sequence, very few time options are offered. They'd go broke offering classes for 6 students and paying Professors to teach them, even if they had the classroom space available. In fact there are upper division courses offered only every other year in a lot of colleges, even medium sized ones.... or only offered Spring or Fall semester, but not both.

    Only in very large Public Universities will a student get to choose from two or possibly three different class times for a non-Intro course.

    Like Clarkson said, at that point it becomes important that the Cadre show their problem solving capabilities... by making available other times where an MSII, MSIII or MSIV may take their ROTC Class. If the Cadre is too busy (i.e. have to cover four campuses and their time is stretched thin), that is one thing, but if they are too lazy, too inflexible or simply too managerially ineffective to accomodate cadets with structured STEM schedules, well, that isn't very good leadership or Battalion management, is it? Of Course LAB is a different story... you can't do Lab effectively without a lot of, or most of, the cadets present... to lead, somebody must be present to follow.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2012
  14. khergan

    khergan Member

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    Not sure if someone has already suggested this, but the university may have a policy for time conflicts.

    Many colleges will allow a student to participate in both classes at once, but will need approval from the faculty of both classes.

    Obviously this requires some flexibility from the cadre, but it should be doable especially given that it is MSIII and the cadet is most likely already contracted. It'd be worth researching to see if a) the university allows to be enrolled in time-conflicting classes and b) if the ROTC instructor is willing to allow the cadet to do all the class/homework but just not be there physically in class.


    Good luck.
     
  15. Marist College ROTC

    Marist College ROTC Member

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    At most programs an individual Cadre member teaches only 1 class at 1 specific time period each week. They must supervise lab and attend a weekly staff meeting. This should leave at least 2 days that have no mandatory scheduled events. It is absurd that a time for an alternate MS III class cannot be identified.

    Most of my students are part of 2 academic programs that offer multiple paths to their degree with very little chance of creating a unresolvable conflict with MS Class. As a result we arrange our MS Schedule around our "difficult" Cadets, ie Biology, Nursing, etc. Once the time for class is specified, the MSIVs plan out the schedules for the cadets in the 2 main programs. This is done in March and October.

    These Cadre are asleep at the wheel. Is it too late to transfer to Clarkson ?
     
  16. AscoreD

    AscoreD Member

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    At my school, academics come first as we are a smaller sized company. Our labs are scheduled in the morning which can sometimes conflict with those "early morning classes" for the average student. In that case our cadre allows for the cadets who have another academic conflict to leave half way through lab. They often receive supplemental learning opportunities when it comes to class as they had missed the last part of lab.

    The same goes for athletes in my company (in respect to PT). If you are a collegiate athlete at our school, then you would be excused from PT seeing that you have a 2 hour practice later that day... or in my case at that same time of PT. I am not excused from lab though due to my collegiate athletic practice schedule which conflicts with both PT and Lab. It is understandable as to why I would not be excused from lab.

    We are a fairly new company, but with a medium school population. If you talk with your cadre I am sure they have contingency plans for such a scenario.
     
  17. AROTC Parent

    AROTC Parent Member

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    Amazingly Poor Leadership? Maybe

    Current Status:

    Despite numerous options and suggestions by the Cadet the only option presented by Cadre and PMS was to go to LDAC out of cycle after graduation and take the MSIV class now (via independent study - LOL) and MSIII class next year. Cadet is opposed to this option as it impacts leadership positions assigned and BOLC dates after graduation. Cadre, but not the PMS, was aware of this potential conflict dating back to March. They took no action proactively.

    Some of the options attempted by the cadet - but it was clear they weren't listening.
    1) Start the MSIII class earlier in the day this semester as there is a two hour gap between PT and the MSIII class (apparently no Cadets have an academic conflict if this change were to occur).
    2) Miss 1/2 of the class time and supplement with one on one interaction for one semester.
    3) Miss upper level science class one day of three per week.

    The Cadre will not entertain supplementing missed MSIII class time with one on one time for a single semester. There are at least seven officers and two NCOs assigned to this Battalion. Amazing they cannot put education first.

    Based on input here numerous schools do allow partial attendance and make up the time with Cadre one on one. But as ClarksonArmy indicated 'It is very Battalion specific' and as dunninla pointed out '...if Cadre ... are simply too managerially ineffective to accomodate cadets with structured STEM schedules......' OK thanks for letting me vent.

    The option taken and as presented by the Cadet is to not attend an upper level science lecture one of three days per week. The professor is gracious enough to allow the lecture to be recorded. However, this will likely impact the course grade. In my opinion the Cadre really should not have allowed this option based on 'Academics First' but as this only impacts the Cadet they are probably not concerned.

    Just an FYI - As parents and commissioned officers neither of us have had contact with the PMS or Cadre on this issue or any other. As a parent it's tempting.

    The lesson learned.....I haven't figured it out yet. But I know there is a lesson in this somewhere.
     
  18. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    I'm glad this has been worked out to some degree. You're DS sounds motivated enough to make this work and NOT have it impact his grades. I'll bet he does well although it certainly is disadvantageous circumstances. I'll be rooting for him. Please let us know how it goes later in the semester. (BTW - I don't think very highly of the cadre based on this)
     
  19. dunninla

    dunninla Member

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    Lesson: Your son found a way to make it happen in the midst of obstacles.
    Prognosis: Good future officer!

    PS: DD has the same issue two weeks ago. Got her Arabic professor to allow her to attend 8am on W vs. 1pm, so she could do her MSII class. This was easy since it is the same professor, same class, different time slot.
     
  20. goaliedad

    goaliedad Parent

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    As to LDAC and BOLC, IIRC first BOLC sessions tend to be mostly WP graduates (they're getting paid from day 1). Now as to where they slot the cadet in (DD IIRC, right?) in afterwards, that is a mystery. If it were DS and going Infantry, this might not be a bad thing considering the weather in GA.

    I understand the frustration, though. This just adds another layer of ambiguity to the start of the career.

    The good news it that cadet is learning the difference between those who do their jobs and those who do their jobs well. Learning that patience will be necessary.

    Not sure if battalion is due for cadre turnover, but hopefully cadet is keeping all emails, so if cadet needs to explain to new cadre reason for late departure to LDAC, it is clear where the issue was.

    If it makes you feel any better, I remember visiting one school with my daughter and having lunch with a couple of MSIIIs who (because the entire MSIV class had checked out) were running things pretty much without cadre present - satellite campus with only 1 enlisted listed as staff (which explained why DD never received a reply to multiple emails). I was impressed with these MSIIIs overcoming what was a total lack of leadership.

    Your cadet will only be stronger for the experience.
     

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