Everyone needs to calm down, take a deep breath, and remember we are in a transition period. Okay sure, using myUPEI for 2017 Summer Registration was a little hectic and confusing. But to accuse the university of neglecting to give adequate time for students to prepare and opportunities to learn about the new system isn’t exactly true. The dramatic presentation of blatant exaggerations in “Not My myUPEI” causes one to stop and question, “Has The Cadre started to publish fake news?”.
The authors, Mr. Geldert and Mr. MacBain, presented an article that embodies pure sensationalism. It is evident that they did not fact-check or make any effort to consult with Project Beacon (the team of people implementing myUPEI). They simply strung together a few half-truths they deemed plausible and presented it as fact.
Here are five instances in which Mr. Geldert and Mr. MacBain present misleading statements:
- The EAP glitch “demonstrates the lack of regard that the administration has”
Yes, some students were coded as requiring “English Academic Preparation” when they weren’t supposed to have that status. But after speaking with an employee at the Registrar, I learned that as soon as they were aware of the issue (around 9:00 am) they worked to correct the problem as quickly as possible (by 10:00 am). I wouldn’t say that demonstrates a lack of regard… A large-scale project such as this one is bound to have a few glitches…and the folks responsible for solving those glitches were able to resolve them within an hour.
- They did not “give students adequate time to adapt and learn about the system”
Actually, an email was sent out to the UPEI community on February 2, 2017 – check your inbox, you should have received it – the email clearly informed the reader about the transition. In addition to this mass email, printed materials (posters, information cards, and bookmarks) appeared all across campus beginning in early February, and information was displayed on more than thirty TV screens in buildings across campus. Not to mention UPEI social media channels and the UPEI website were used to inform the community about the changes myUPEI would bring. All of these communication tools pointed students to resources where they could learn more about myUPEI.
Students were given access to myUPEI on February 6th and a myUPEI information session was held in the Student Centre the day before Summer Registration opened. Mr. Geldert and Mr. MacBain alluded to this fact and that the original timeline for this transition was to be more spaced out. Unfortunately, due to weather, the campus was closed for a number of days and the timeline became compressed, which regrettably resulted in the information session being the day before registration opened.
- “Seemingly oblivious to this fact, the administration at UPEI decided that the opening day of summer registration would be the perfect time to roll out myUPEI.”
Students were able to log in and poke around myUPEI on February 6 and then 21 days later, they were able to plan and register for Summer 2017. Three weeks seems like plenty of time to learn about myUPEI — so perhaps it is actually a very sensible time to roll out myUPEI. As of October 1, 2016, a total of 4,433 students, both full-time and part-time, were enrolled at UPEI. It makes more sense to implement myUPEI before summer registration rather than before fall or winter registration when far more students are registering for classes.
- “Was the Campus Login really not good enough?”
UPEI students do not deserve “good enough”, they deserve the best! UPEI should research, plan, and seek out new ways of making student life easier and more efficient. Don’t we want and expect the university to strive for the best? Student Planning on myUPEI, for instance, is much more efficient. On Campus Login, students were constantly switching between four tabs: a tab with course descriptions, a tab that outlines the required classes to graduate, a tab for course registration, and a tab with the timetable. This worked for some time and was probably better than the days of standing in line at the gymnasium to register for courses. But it is not up to par with what other universities are offering across the country. In myUPEI, all this information is streamlined to one area, and it may actually be easier for students to register.
- “We have never had any issues with it [Campus Login], and I think we would be hard-pressed to find someone who has.”
This gross and absolute statement that Mr. Geldert and Mr. MacBain suggest, is one that requires history, research, or authority to claim. Campus Login has been in use at UPEI for more than ten years. Can they honestly speak on behalf of all students who have used Campus Login at UPEI, when they have only attended UPEI for three years? There are bound to have been issues over the years with Campus Login, particularly when the platform was first launched.
The above is only five (of the many) instances in “Not My myUPEI” where Mr. Geldert and Mr. MacBain replaced fact with misleading half-truths.
Fellow UPEI students, we need to be patient in this time of transition, we need to be open to change, and evidently we need to be wary of fake news.
Students Open To Change