More reasons than one to sign up for summer sessions at UMSL
As the University of Missouri–St. Louis wraps up its final days of the spring semester, some students are already looking to summer courses starting Monday.
“I chose to take summer courses to graduate faster,” said senior computer science major Harprabh Sangha, who took math, computer science and art history courses over the last two summers and graduates this weekend.
Sangha said he liked getting classes he needed to complete his degree out of the way and that his professors were still very available to help.
“David Covert for Math 3000 and Galina [Piatnitskaia] for Math 2000 were absolutely amazing,” he said of the two teaching professors at UMSL. “They had regular office hours and answered their emails regularly.”
Summer session also allowed Sangha to pick up a minor and certificate – math and cybersecurity, respectively – of which he was only a few credits shy with his major coursework.
There’s even more incentive to do so when students can knock out credits in either four, eight or 12 week summer session options.
Lifelong learner Diane Goodwin, who works on campus as an executive staff assistant in the College of Education and is completing her bachelor’s degree in liberal studies, took a health psychology course in summer 2016 that helped her round out her psychology minor. She’s also working on a business minor and will graduate this fall after chipping away at her degree one course a semester since 2006. Goodwin said having summer session as an option definitely helped.
“Taking summer courses are the same as fall and spring courses but the course material is taught at a faster pace,” said Goodwin, who liked being able to complete the course in only eight weeks and felt confident in the quality and rigor of the course.
She also liked that she still had time to spend with family in the process.
Available both online and on-campus, summer courses fit flexibly into students’ summer lives as well. One example is Assistant Teaching Professor Marc Spingola’s Cell Biology course, which he commonly teaches during the summer at UMSL.
“My Cell Bio class is 100 percent online, and I have a majority of distance students, including about 80 from UMKC [University of Missouri–Kansas City],” Spingola said.
Often students take the cell biology course because it isn’t offered during summer sessions at their home institution. That’s not an uncommon occurrence, making the varied summer course offerings at UMSL appealing to students looking to fulfill core and general degree requirements and easily transfer them back to their home institution.
Of course, there are other perks to summer courses too.
“You can wear shorts to class every day, and there are fewer geese on campus,” teased Spingola, who noted the easier campus parking and decreased traffic too.
The first summer session begins May 15, but registration is still open for the next two sessions starting June 12 and July 10. No application fees are required, and no transcripts are necessary. Illinois residents in 22 counties qualify for in-state undergraduate tuition too.
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