Love/Hate Relationship with MWSU
By Nicholas Ingram
October 25, 2013
To say the least, I have had a very interesting time since I came to Missouri Western.
While there are faculty members, administrators, and students that I respect and get along with, there are certain aspects of this school that just plainly ruin my student experience here.
I’m not sure if I’m the only one that feels this way, but I figured I would share the pros and cons of our university.
As a disclaimer, this is in no way an attack on any specific staff member or student.
It would be easy for me to simply write about the everyday problems on campus such as with parking or the slow internet, but there are much deeper issues at hand.
First of all, the transfer credit criteria for this school is ridiculous.
I received my Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice and attempted to have the credits transferred so I could continue my education and graduate with a Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice. Unfortunately, even though the school I graduated from is accredited and after going through the appeals process and writing multiple letters to administrators and staff members, not a single credit was transferred. I came back to Missouri Western with exactly what I had left it with, so as a 21 year old, I was still a first semester sophomore.
Why? Why was my education from a different school denied even when I felt I had learned more there, made the Dean’s List, and did more hands on work and field training than I have yet to do here?
To go with the problems of transferring credits, the academic probation and suspension policies are completely unnecessary. Why is the best solution for a student with below average grades to kick them out for a semester because they didn’t meet the ‘standard’ of grade point averages? With the current policy, even if a student has a good semester while on probation, they can be suspended again because their GPA still isn’t high enough. That seems more like being punished for a crime twice for no reason. I would think the best solution for a legitimately struggling student is not to kick them out like they did something wrong, but rather provide more assistance and encouragement to help bring up their grades. I understand if the policies are in place to prevent lazy students from taking advantage of student loans, but this should not make the policy so strict that it cannot use logic in all situations. Pressures of being a student, having a job, and keeping a social life affect schoolwork; regardless of how important school is, and yes I am going to defend that having a social life should come before homework sometimes.
This could really go for most universities around the country, but athletics should not be the most important and most funded part of a school. Local public schools have this problem around town about putting most of their attention and resources towards athletics and less towards the arts or even the core classes of education. A school should not be firstly defined on how well its football or basketball team plays. I’m not saying athletics should be cut from Missouri Western or any other school, but it just should not be made such a big deal and promoted so much. Perhaps if the university really cares about educating its students, it will put more resources towards the other departments around campus and spend less time and money on games.
I will end this on a good note. I am grateful for my education and those who have helped me to succeed. At Missouri Western there are many people that I have met that are very decent people that truly love their jobs and are passionate towards their fields. The instructors I have had, for the most part, are excellent at teaching and I have all the respect in the world for what they do. This school, much like the rest of St. Joseph has the potential to be better and still be unique to the region. The university should not think of itself as already being the best or even that great because that leads to just being full of itself and not caring about its students or the community, but I’m not saying it’s there yet, however I fear it could be soon. I only think that if Missouri Western is supposed to be an ever evolving school, then it should fulfill its own mission statement and serve its students through professional and voluntary service.