Monday, August 18, 2008

Why I seriously cannot stand community college

While I've been wanting to go to Purdue University to complete my Pharmacy degree, DH and I thought it would be easier and cheaper for me to attend a local community college to get pre-req.s and other nonsensical classes out of the way.

I know in my heart of hearts that you get what you pay for, but I guess I expected a little more from people who supposedly "value [your] education."

Back in 2003, right after I graduated high school, I was dealing with a lot of emotions: my mother had recently passed, my family was torn apart - big, big sob story. Thank God I've moved past it all. I enrolled in classes at the community college and decided I should better myself. We all know that emotions take their toll, and finances were running short for me, so I decided to take a full-time job and pursue my education part-time in another instituion. I dropped an entire semester of classes.

I didn't like the community college when I was there anyway. My classmates were usually high and forced to be there because their moms made them come. The instructors didn't really take class seriously. Unless you took just one class or payed out-of-pocket, they seriously treated you like you were uneducated, couldn't make your own decisions and like - well, a criminal. I can't tell you how many times I had to explain myself over and over that yes, I did understand that I had to actually come to class to receive credits, and this such. Plus, if you tried to get help with anything and they would point you in the direction of their oh, so NOT useful website for students which, to this day, lacks any and all kinds of real information.

Fast forward five years: I paid for my last semesters out-of-pocket, but with the baby coming and DH working his tail off to support all my our insurance needs, etc., I decided to apply for financial aid. I did all the early enrollment protocol, like they tell you to do. I provided all my tax documents, like they asked me to do. And when I requested status of my financial aid in early June, I was told they don't give any awards until July.

I waited until July. I went back to the FA office and was told I needed to provide my husband's tax information. Not a problem. Did it. I was told it would post to the website (*sigh*) in a few days, so I should continue checking in each day until it posted to my account. Several days passed. Nothing posted.

I made a phone call to the office because I needed to know what my award was, if any, for insurance purposes. I was told I would have to wait longer. I waited longer. I decided to check in in person to the FA office. I waited 40 minutes to see a counselor (who was chit-chatting it up in the back - in plain sight - with a younger, hot counselor). When I finally did get in, my "advisor" told me I was awarded a full Pell grant - even provided with with a financial figure, and that I should receive an award letter in the mail shortly.

No letter came. Today I checked the damn website. Nada. I drove 30 minutes to the campus to wait again, full morning sickness-ified in a hot, crowded, stuffy FA office. I waited another 40-45 minutes before he called my name.

I told him, "I just want to check the status of my financial aid. Classes start in six days and I just want to make sure I'm not washed out of registration."

A$$hole Advisor: "Well, it says here your financial aid has been terminated."

Me: "....WHA....? HOW?!"

A$$: "Well, you dropped out of classes in 2003. You have to maintain a 2.0 GPA or complete 2/3 enrolled hours measured cumulatively. You were terminated Summer of 2003. You were notified."

Me: "When was I notified?"

A$$: "Summer of 2003."

Yeah. Five years ago! I was dropped from financial aid from that college FIVE years ago. So what have I been doing all summer long? Running here, making copies there, dropping off forms in this, this, and that mail box? When did they think it was a good time to let me know that I have no funding for the semester?! Six days before it starts?!

If I would have known at the begining of the summer back when I registered, I could have fixed it, or at least saved up enough cash to pay for it. But no, A$$ would rather flirt with some chick than do his damn job, and so now I'm out an entire semester. The baby will come, God willing, in the middle of next semester - so that puts me a good two semesters behind.

I'm infuriated.


Anonymous said...

can you start at purdue instead? apply for FA through them?

Amie said...

That's the plan, but I still can't start until Dec. or Aug. : (