Students can get caught up in the rules and requirements. Faculty see the big picture. We want students to take classes across the curriculum because we know that a great anthropology class or a really fascinating biology professor can make a lifelong impression. We also encourage students to take challenging courses and worry a little less about grades. A student who puts off a tough seminar requirement to the spring semester of senior year may discover that it was her best course ever but, by that time, it will be too late to take another one.
Often students just need help finding classes, making sense of all the rules, and understanding the value of a liberal arts education. For example, last fall I talked a student out of double majoring so that he could spend his senior year taking courses from around the campus that sounded exciting to him. Of course, faculty advising is also crucial to those students hoping to go to graduate school. We’ve all been there and we know what students have to do to prepare.