Not enough weeks in the year to implement Fall Reading Week


Students question why Red River College does not have a fall reading week at The Exchange District Campus on Sept. 26, 2018./ORYCIA KARPA


While other post-secondary institutions in Winnipeg have already implemented a fall reading week, Red River College has yet to do the same.


An extra week-long academic break in the fall semester would be difficult for RRC to accommodate. A complete semester at the college requires 16 weeks of class time.


Programs like Business Administration run from January to mid-August and start its second year of the program in September. If RRC were to move the mid-August academic break to the fall semester, students in programs like Business Administration would be in school for 32 weeks straight (mid-February to mid-October).


“We just don’t have enough physical weeks in a year” said Program Coordinator, Marnie Boulet.


In the fall semester, students are in class for 16 weeks and then get a two-week academic break before the winter term begins.


“I like the fact that there is a week-long break in the summer,” said Boulet.


Other post-secondary institutions have already placed a fall reading week into their 2018-2019 academic schedules.


The University of Manitoba will have its first fall academic break the week of November 12-16, though many of the programs in the Rady Faculty of Health Sciences are unable to accommodate the fall reading week because of their curriculum schedules.


The University of Winnipeg introduced the academic break in 2015 to allow students to study and de-stress. No academic days have been lost due to the week-long break. To accommodate, the University began its fall semester a day earlier, removed a “study day” and added two Saturdays to their exam period.


“I would absolutely benefit from a fall reading week,” said Hayden Reihl, a 20-year-old Digital Media Design (DMD) student at Red River College.


The DMD program is project based, with a heavy work load and weekly assignment deadlines.

“The reading week would give me time to focus on my projects and catch up on sleep,” said Reihl.


“Any break we can get would be greatly appreciated, especially around midterms,” said Business Information Technology student, Stephen Pawulski.


Pawulski believes courses don’t take a break into consideration. The BIT program is work intensive and Pawulski says he spends 35 hours a week in class and takes home between two to six hours of homework a day.


Red River College offers plenty a wide range of support to help struggling students. Find out more about RRC’s support programs by visiting