For some graduating seniors in the public health school, the last final exam may be the most stressful.
The public health school’s commencement ceremony was originally scheduled for May 23 at Ritchie Coliseum, but in February, students petitioned to move the graduation back to Xfinity Center — where the school’s last four spring ceremonies have been held — so students could invite more than two guests.
Now, some students have found the new ceremony time falls just after — or just before — they take their exams.
Students in FMSC460: Violence in Families are scheduled to take their final exam at 8 a.m. on May 22, three hours before their 11 a.m. commencement ceremony. Students in KNES442: Psychology of Exercise and Health will have their final exam at 1:30 p.m.
Seth Bagley, a senior public health science major, said he raised concerns about the time conflict of his FMSC460 exam with the course’s professor, Christine Schull.
After surveying the class, Bagley said that Schull found “close to half” of the class was graduating seniors. Now, she’s offering an additional exam time at 8 a.m. the next day.
But Bagley said he still plans to take the exam on the original date, because he has plans after graduation and doesn’t want to miss out on the opportunity to celebrate the milestone with family and friends.
“I have, like, 30-some people coming to my graduation that are coming to celebrate with me, and it’s kind of all messed up because of this final exam,” Bagley said. “So I kind of just bit the bullet.”
When asked for comment, Schull referred The Diamondback to Colleen Farmer, an assistant public health dean. Farmer did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday.
Bagley, who has an accommodation for testing anxiety as well as social anxiety, said the situation adds an extra level of stress.
“[Schull] should be able to accommodate me, but then also everyone else because why shouldn’t they? We have worked so hard to get to this point,” Bagley said. “We’ve paid thousands of dollars to come here.”
University spokesperson Natifia Mullings wrote in an email that the university schedules final exams before its main campuswide graduation every winter and spring.
“Individual schools and colleges organize their ceremonies at their Dean’s discretion,” she wrote.
Megan D’Apice is scheduled to take her KNES442 exam two-and-a-half hours after the commencement ceremony is scheduled to begin. She said she estimates the ceremony will take about two hours, leaving her only 30 minutes to get to her exam.
D’Apice, a senior kinesiology major, said she has several family members flying to the university from Florida, Massachusetts and New Hampshire to attend her graduation. As the first person on her dad’s side of the family to go straight from high school to college and have a college graduation ceremony, she said attending the ceremony is important to her and her family, and the timing has messed up her plans.
“Since I have a lot of family members coming in to town, we were supposed to have a lunch that we were going to go to after, like a graduation party later that night,” she said. “I feel bad not spending time with them — I have to go take an exam.”