Welcome back from your very long Fall Break,? Provost Charles Phelps said in his Health Policy class. ?Did you notice it??

Fall Break isn?t really a break. It?s simply a time for most students to keep working and catch-up. Students deserve to have more than one day.

Time management is a skill that college students learn to master during their years in college. However, in order for students to properly manage their time there must be enough of it in the first place.

UR has done a poor job of setting the academic calendar by failing to give enough time for classes to complete their schedules, while allowing for needed breaks for both students and faculty.

Classes began the day after Labor Day leaving students without enough time to settle in. A business day before the first day of classes gives students the minimum time they need in order to get settled and purchase books.

The College then wisely canceled classes on Sept. 11. and occasionally, individual professors cancel classes. UR should take into account that emergencies happen. Students and professors should not feel pressured to condense coursework in order to finish the year on time. In fact, classes should be cancelled this Friday for Meliora Weekend.

Is going to a class or lab actually worth missing a symposium that features the U.S. Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta? Students should not have to make this decision.

The solution is simply to begin school a week or two earlier so that the school calendar is not so tight. This allows more flexibility when extenuating circumstances arise and class must be canceled and avoids putting professors in a bind at the end of the semester. This could also allow students to go home earlier for Thanksgiving and Winter Break.

The benefits of starting early far outweigh the realities of our tight calendar year that is stressed by anything unusual happening, whether in one class or school-wide.

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