No fall reading week for RRC yet

Students studying in the cafeteria at Red River College’s Roblin Centre. THE PROJECTOR/SAWCHUK

Students studying in the cafeteria at Red River College’s Roblin Centre. THE PROJECTOR/SAWCHUK

Red River College students’ reactions are mixed to whether they want a fall reading week.

“It would be awesome. There’s more time to think about your studies, and much less pressure,” said Renie Jarin, a student in the business information technology program. “It should be one of their [Students’ Association] priorities. It would give students a week off that will take some pressure off and focus on what is important on life, while still working on your studies.”

Fall reading weeks are a recent trend in post-secondary schools across the country. Both the University of Winnipeg and the University of Manitoba will introduce fall reading weeks in 2016. RRC will not be adding a fall reading week — at least not yet.

Red River College Students’ Association (RRCSA) President Benjamin McDonald said the students’ association has started looking into the possibility of a reading week, but hasn’t decided how to move forward yet.

“It’s a conversation we have started. We don’t have a policy on it — it’s in the development stage,” said McDonald. “However, it is something we will discuss with the administration at our next meeting.”

“I think it’s a good idea,” said Alina Wilson, a University of Winnipeg, a faculty education student.

“I mean, the fall semester isn’t any less stressful than the winter semester, and especially if you’re a first-year student, you’re coming into university and it’s an adjustment and it’s nice to catch up on work in a mental health way.”

But some students say that the extra week wouldn’t help them.

“Personally, if I had a long break in the semester, I’d feel disoriented, but it depends on the program you’re in and how hard you need to study that early on,” said Tina Carson, a student in the library and information technology program.
McDonald said the RRCSA is looking into a fall reading week because of the results from a survey of students conducted last year.“It’s something brought up by the students, and we represent the students, so that is what we’ll do,” said McDonald.But he warns students not to hold their breath for a fall reading week in 2016. “This is a multi-year project we would incorporate into our strategic plan,” said McDonald. “The reason for that is that the process of getting a spring reading week from start to finish took about six years. We’re not expecting it to take that long.”

 Edit: Nov. 30 3:58 p.m. – edited for style