I don’t need a DISC option, I need my school to start caring

The option to drop my classes may not affect my GPA, but it negatively impacts my desire to keep studying

Concordia’s DISC option is fuelling my desire to quit school altogether. Graphic Gabriela Vasquez-Rondon

On Nov. 29, Concordia University proved once again it couldn’t care less about its students' well being. The school sent out an email addressed to the student body, explaining that the option to discontinue, or drop, classes will be reinstated until Dec 7.

Pass/Fail would have allowed students battling with post-quarantine mental exhaustion to keep focusing on their studies, and not give up. The option would overall have been a good way to motivate students to keep going. 

With great effort from the CSU, the school ultimately provided the student body with an alternative, but to me, the DISC option feels like a slap in the face. 

I believe giving students the option to discontinue their classes—so close to the end of the semester—shows a lack of sympathy and understanding towards students who are already struggling financially and academically. 

Coming back to in-person classes, I really thought I would regain the motivation I lost last year. I was fully convinced that I simply needed to return to an in-person academic setting to get over the mental exhaustion brought on by the past two years.

I have never claimed to be a model student. I admit to having dropped two out of four classes I was enrolled in this semester. Despite wanting to drop out completely, I kept going, convincing myself that I was doing all of this for a reason.  

I’m currently dealing with the age-old student struggle that is questioning the relevance of my studies. I find I haven’t learned a single relevant thing since starting university, which might be because I began my undergraduate studies during the pandemic. I feel lost, my classes feel purposeless, and it feels like all the efforts I've been pushing myself to make–to stay afloat these past couple of months–have been nullified by one short announcement. 

I am exhausted, and some of us cannot afford the financial cost of dropping a class, simply to retake it another time. I would be wasting thousands of dollars in tuition on an establishment that couldn’t bother listening to its student body. 

Students have been studying under unconventional circumstances for more than a year now without a moment to process the switch to online classes, only to be attending school in-person once again.  We deserve a break to take it all in, and Pass/Fail would have allowed us to do that, instead of tempting me with the option to quit.  

The problem is that if I quit now, I might not come back. Having the possibility of discontinuing my classes is a temptation I can’t afford. Although Concordia’s DISC option doesn’t have an impact on my grades, and is inconsequential to my GPA, it greatly affects my motivation to keep up with my studies. 

It’s not only the little voice in my head pushing me to abandon everything I’ve desperately been working toward for a year and a half now, but my school telling me I’m not worth the time for them to even consider Pass/Fail, when students have been begging for it since the semester started.

Concordia, as an educational establishment, has the responsibility of providing its students with a good learning environment. The university’s job is to make sure we have access to the tools we need to succeed in our studies. Those tools should manifest themselves in the form of mental health services, tutoring sessions, and meetings with advisors, not by allowing students to drop classes that are almost finished. 

To me, the DISC option is a waste of time, energy, and money, and I couldn’t be more disappointed in Concordia as a teaching institution.