Classes are running today, Monday, Nov. 11, on Veterans Day, a federal holiday. While some students have expressed discontent about having classes on this holiday, the academic year would be extended if ENC did not hold class today.
“At ENC we endeavor to maximize the summer and Christmas break so that our students can have extended time with family as well as the opportunity for employment between semesters,” Provost Dr. Timothy Wooster said. “We start the semester in September rather than August and we end earlier in December than comparison schools.”
Wooster said that the academic year would be longer if ENC observed every federal holiday.
“There are too many federal holidays to take them all off,” Wooster said. “The semesters would be longer if we did.”
There are 10 federal holidays; seven of these holidays fall during the academic year, between Sept. 4, 2013 and May 2, 2014. This year, ENC will observe five of those seven federal holidays. ENC will not observe Washington’s Birthday/Presidents’ Day or Veterans Day.
Day classes were not held on Columbus Day, on Oct. 13.
“ENC does take Columbus Day off since it provides a break in the middle of the semester when most students need a break,” Wooster said. “There is a careful balance of break days and class days in order to meet federal seat-time credit hour requirements.”
The provost explained that most four-year colleges hold class on Veterans Day. Curry College, located less than eight miles from ENC, is one of the few of these types of colleges that have today off. Curry’s semester ends Dec. 21, three days later than ENC’s.
Despite not having the day off, faculty and students are encouraged to recognize Veterans Day.
“We encourage faculty and students to integrate content into their classes and to plan student programming to honor the focus of these days,” Wooster said.
Despite some students on Twitter expressing that holding classes on Veterans Day is disrespectful, Wooster said ENC honors veterans in various ways, including participating in programs such as ROTC and the Yellow Ribbon financial aid program.
Classes will run as usual today, but students may be glad to know that means having a shorter semester.