70 sophomores skip their Summer term

by Shevani Jaisingh | 7/5/01 5:00am

Even though Sophomore Summer is heralded as one of the best times to be at the College, some sophomores choose not to spend their summer at Dartmouth taking classes as the traditional D-plan prescribes.

This year, 70 members of the Class of 2003 are not on campus, but 970 are, according to the Class of 2003 Dean Teoby Gomez. Additionally, six '03s are on LSA/FSP programs, said Associate Registrar Nancy Broadhead.

In order to make other plans for the summer, students must go through an exemption process, which involves petitioning the registrar. If a student's petition is denied, the student may appeal to the College's Committee on Standards, according to Gomez.

The administration encourages students to stay on campus for their sophomore summer because, as part of the D-plan, it helps the College control enrollment patterns such as housing and class size, Gomez said.

Therefore, College regulations say that no more than 100 sophomores may be exempted from the Summer term.

Gomez cited two main reasons sophomores usually give for exemption from Sophomore Summer.

The first reason is financial. For some -- because either they are on campus or their job is not offered during the year -- the summer is often the only opportunity to make money. And often, a student has been working at the same place for the past few summers, so the student has accumulated higher rank and pay at that job.

"[Student can be exempted if] they have a job that is going to pay a lot of money, and the summer is the only time they can make that money," Gomez explained.

The second main reason students ask for exemption from Sophomore Summer is that they have been presented a special opportunity, either academic or extracurricular.

He also said that not all of the '03s off-campus this summer had a predetermined reason for not being here. Sometimes, a student has a family emergency or medical problem that happens at the last minute which prevents them from being here.

Tara Maller '03 made the decision to ask for a Sophomore Summer waiver during Winter term so that she could work at Senator Hilary Clinton's office in Washington, D.C. She said that since she was going to be in Washington for Spring term, she wanted to have the option to extend her internship into the summer if she liked her work.

"Working in Senator Clinton's office superceded my expectations, so I decided to go along with the waiver," Maller said.

"This is a once in a lifetime internship and I would not have missed Sophomore Summer for anything else," she added.

However, Maller said she did not actually receive a waiver. When she petitioned the registrar she got a deferment, so that she is expected to be here next summer instead of this one.

"The registrar was insistent about being here for a summer," she said. But, for next summer she is allowed to ask for another waiver.

And as for not experiencing Sophomore Summer, " I miss Dartmouth, but I don't regret not being at Dartmouth, now that I am here [in D.C.]," she said.

Joe Shaw '03 decided to take this term off because of his commitment to the track team. Since he competes Fall, Winter and Spring terms, the summer is the only opportunity he has for an off-term without compromising competition. So, this summer he is training at home and interning with Pfizer.

"It would be an excessive amount of time here [at Dartmouth] if I were to stay for the summer," he said. But " I do feel like I am missing out on a special time for the Class of 2003."

In addition to the 970 sophomores on campus, there are 20 students from the Class of 2004 here taking classes, 55 members of the Class of 2002 and 40 members from earlier classes, according Broadhead. Also, there are 21 exchange students here for the summer.

Lindsay Clayton '04 said she is taking classes this summer because of the tight job market.

"I decided that it would be better for me to take classes now rather than sit around at home all summer," she said.

"I am liking the summer so far -- it is relaxing to be here with fewer people. It is also nice to be able to be outdoors more," she added.

Some '04s decided to work at the College for the summer. Tate LeFevre '04 is working for Green Core, Dartmouth's alumni fund campaign.

Acordig to LeFevre, in addition to the good pay, "it's a great deal to get housing here during the summer and it's nice to be here at Dartmouth and not worry about classes."

Gomez said that in the Class of 2000, there was a student who was actively involved in ballet. She chose not to stay on campus for her Sophomore Summer because she was offered a spot to dance and travel with a Dutch ballet company.

"This was something that, if she turned down, she might not be offered again," Gomez said.