In anticipation of Tidal Wave II, UCSB administrators are trying to move more students from beaches to classrooms for future summer sessions.
UCSB, UCLA and UC Berkeley have initiated talks focusing on changes to their summer session schedules, which could include switching from a six-week to a 10-week summer session and adding two- to three-week "turbo sessions." The Summer Sessions Task Force (SSTF) is also considering options to improve financial aid during summer and increase the number of faculty.
These measures would accommodate increased enrollment, which is important in alleviating overcrowding of students in the future, Chancellor Henry Yang said.
"UC is preparing for what’s been called "Tidal Wave II" – an expected surge in the number of UC-eligible students over the next decade," Yang said. "Larry Hershman, the UC vice president for budget, has said that an expanded summer term is an essential part of the University’s plans for accommodating this enrollment surge."
A key to increased enrollment is improved financial aid, since many students attending summer school must pay for living costs they would not have at home, Financial Aid Director Veronica O’Dette said. Students in past years had to use remaining funds for summer financial aid. Beginning in 2001, summer students can receive additional grants and loans during summer session.
"The whole [change in] summer sessions is going to have a major impact on financial aid, mainly because the financial aid recipients were only those students who had remaining eligibility from the school year," she said.
There is also an expected shift from Santa Barbara City College professors teaching summer session classes to more UCSB professors. Bob Kuntz, co-chair of the SSTF, said he hopes professors will disperse their research throughout the year in order to spend more time teaching summer sessions.
"The emphasis will be on increasing the number of UCSB professors that teach during summer sessions," he said. "Right now there is mainly a lot of research done during the summer."
More faculty teachers would contribute to a greater enrollment in the university, Yang said.
"One way for UCSB to enroll more students, without going over the cap set by our Long Range Development Plan, is for us to move toward offering more courses taught by our ladder faculty," he said. "This would give our students the opportunity to complete their degree requirements sooner and to take those courses in the Summer Quarter that are in particularly high demand during the Fall, Spring and Winter Quarters."
The SSTF has not made any definite plans, however.
"No final decisions have been made about any change to summer sessions. At this point there has been a task force that has been meeting since last spring," Kuntz said. "I don’t mean to rule anything out, it’s just that no decision has been made."
Despite the task force’s steady efforts, such as daily meetings, reviews and planning, major changes will not occur this summer. Kuntz expects increased enrollment from graduating seniors needing a few more units or incoming freshmen wanting to get a head start, Kuntz said.
"No radical changes will be made to the coming summer session. We will be making every effort to increase the enrollment, but any significant changes would be beginning summer sessions 2002," he added.
The success of future summer sessions depends on a plan to increase both funding and staff, O’Dette said.
"I think that they are excellent ideas, and if we get the funding, and if we get the staffing, it will be excellent for the students," she said. "But one without the other will not work."