Roll with the Punches or Throw Some: Riverpoint Strikes Again

23 Aug

I am just a magnet for bad luck.  No matter how well-prepared I am–it will find me.  I felt like I was ready for fall semester.  Over-prepared, really, to the chagrin of campus staff.  I definitely pestered every pertinant department, trying to get ahead during the summer break:  I bought my parking permit as early as the school would allow, tried to take care of financial aid early on, and printed the syllabus and notes that were available to me.  And yet–there were problems, problems on my first day of school.  What else could there be?

Halfway through anatomy class, lightning flashed and the power cut out.  The last 30-45 minutes commenced in the dark.  Apparently, there is no generator at WSU’s Riverpoint Campus.  As a result, we are already behind on the syllabus.  Which normally wouldn’t be a bad thing, but you know the prof will make us do double-time elsewhere to make that up. . .  Anyway, at the end of class, some TA came in with the instructor’s children and mentioned in passing that power wasn’t supposed to be back on until 2 PM.  My next class was 11:30-12:45 PM.

So I didn’t know if I would have class or not.  I went straight to my advisor’s door to avoid any confusion.  And of course, she wasn’t in yet (once it starts, you can’t beat the bad luck).  I didn’t know who else to ask, and couldn’t get a good WiFi connection on my Kindle *gerr*  So I went home, if for nothing else to check my e-mail and my phone (which I had forgotten) for any alerts.

And there were none.  No e-mail.  No message on Facebook.  Nothing on the Riverpoint Campus webpage.  Nothing on the Riverpoint Alerts page.  No information.  So I couldn’t put on my jammies. I could not begin any project or studying in depth.  I just sort of killed time until I had to go back to school.  And while I was waiting, I e-mailed:  My instructor, my Advisor, head of my department, and someone in the main office at school.  Also, I wrote on the school’s and my major’s Facebook pages asking if anyone else knew–with the response, “There’s a power outage?”  I assume from that other people knew even LESS then I did.  Or the school had fixed the power so quickly no one else knew there had been a problem.  Either way.

Since I heard nothing, I figured my class would commence as scheduled.

Did I mention yet that it was raining?  Randomly, it was raining super-hard on the first day of fall semester–in August.  When just the day before it had been 90 degrees and too sunny to run.  So on my way back to class I got soaked.  It was miserable walking around campus in pouring rain.  And I had substantial walking to do.

BECAUSE on my official schedule the location of my class was listed:  General University Classroom.  And I didn’t know where that was, but there are only a few buildings on campus, so I wandered through looking for such a thing.  Unsuccessfully.  I was going to be running late (if class was still proceeding as scheduled) so I stopped at Student Information and asked.  The gal working the desk looked momentarily confused and asked, “Is that what your schedule says?”  “Vague, huh” I replied.  Then she  just asked for the number of my course–she could look it up that way.

The room (called SCC 147) was right around the corner from the help desk.  And on the doorway was a hand-written sign telling me my class was cancelled due to the power outage.  As you can guess–I was infuriated.  And since I was on campus and had wasted so much time and gas already, not to mention this JUST happened to me during winter semester’s blizzard–I went to my department’s hall to raise hell.  I was set to chew some a$$ and tell someone important that this repetitive non-communication was unacceptable.

Alas, the hallways were dark, and I could hear voices, but I didn’t want to walk in on a meeting or a class or something, so I began to leave.  Then, I crossed paths with my Anatomy Prof, who said hello.  I said maybe she could help me, as I didn’t know who I should be looking for to discuss my concerns.

She said [in cap. letters, my unvoiced thoughts in lowercase]:

A]  Riverpoint never cancels class.

a}  Wrong.

B]  The Riverpoint security are like, big New Yorkers.

b}  Umm, OK.

C]  Obviously, they (meaning anyone in charge in my department) have no access to Riverpoint, though SHE does on her Mac-Book or whatever.

c}  Other instructors/department chairs/people in power must also have access to internet on personal devices.  Use them to inform students.  Somewhere.  Or leave campus to do it.  Make a phone call.  PS–MAKE communication happen.  Just because the obvious solution of internet is removed, doesn’t mean there is no means of communication, and it certainly does not mean staff and faculty should just not try at all.

D]  “Be Flexible.”

d}  bitch, I’m gonna slap you *un-uttered, obviously*

“Be flexible.”  I retort, “Be professional.”  Or at least not so inept.  Speech and Hearing Sciences is a major and department completely revolving around communication.  COMMUNICATION!  Is it really so much to ask to know when class is, and where it will be held?  When I am paying $3500 (plus interest b/c that is loan money) I have some expectations.  And I don’t think that’s unreasonable.

Right now it’s an annoyance.  A severe annoyance.  But if ever some crazed gunman cuts the power on the Riverpoint campus and goes on a shooting rampage–as happens more frequently then it should (per the news).  Well, I’m a gonner.  I will be one of the people shot, because I’ll still be hanging about campus trying to figure out what’s going on.  Because certainly no one will have told me anything.  I will get killed because I will be wandering about, lost and confused, trying to decide if class has been cancelled or not.

I think that removes the matter from the realm of flexibility.

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