Tomorrow for the first time in a half a year I have to pull on a suit & rejoin the drones toiling at the nine-to-five in a faceless corporation, so I thought I’d let off a bit of steam baiting some bureaucrats.
To the Assistant Registrar, Birkbeck College
Dear Ms. Brown,
I was recently accepted onto the MSc Cognitive Neuropsychology course only to have this place blocked by the Registrar. Dr. Thomas informed me of the ‘reasons’ for this. I write not to contest this particular decision but to protest what appears to be the general thinking behind it.
As I am sure you are more than aware, the students at Birkbeck have arrived via diverse academic paths and study under a wide range of personal circumstances. Throughout my own course I have concurrently held down a very demanding full time job, something which is of course true of most of my fellow students. I have been very impressed by how students manage competing demands and by how flexible and understanding the college is in accommodating us.
Thus it with some incredulity that I find the main argument against students studying two course concurrently appears to be the pressure of doing two things simultaneously. This is precisely what Birkbeck students have demonstrated the ability to do & all the programmes are designed to permit this. It also seems strange to me that any decisions on “academic grounds” should rest with the Registry. I would have thought the academic departments would be better placed to decide this than the administration.
I realise that situations like mine should always be the exception not the rule and that the Registry exists to oversee the operation of the college but I cannot help feeling the Registry has (in this case at least) has been unnecessarily inflexible and bureaucratic. I hope that in future cases similarly placed students will meet in the Resistry the helpful and open-minded approach I already find in the psychology department.