On Friday or Thursday afternoon, it occurred to me that the e-mail I’d sent to my trainee graduation counselor had never, after almost three weeks, been returned. So I finally sent out a volley of e-mail — actually one e-mail, volleyed to everyone on the list of previous contacts in political science advising I’d seen. It said, basically, You haven’t replied. I want to appeal this decision. Tell me what to do next. The implied line was: you ridiculous bastards.
Today, I get home from school, clean up my room a little, and then on a whim check my work (my ku.edu) e-mail. There’s an e-mail from the advisor who’s advising my trainee advisor (five times fast, go!) saying that my only chance to appeal is to get a written statement to her office by 5 p.m. today, along with a written statement from my poli sci advisor supporting my claims. She wrote half the e-mail in ALL CAPS. Not encouraging. So, I wrote up a nice, narrative letter, and then called my advisor. And here’s the kicker — he told me he had already e-mailed this woman (Ms. C-D) to say that he’d never heard of the requirement — the 9 hours in residence in the department — that is keeping me from graduating.
Here’s what this means. Upon transferring to KU, I went to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences office and was told that, unless I was a freshman or sophomore, all of my advising would be done through my department. I went to the top man in undergraduate advising in my department — the man whose job is to oversee all the other professors doing advising — and was told that I only needed one class to graduate. I have now had it confirmed that this is, to the best of his knowledge, still true. He thinks it may be some kind of CLAS rule — a rule that, perhaps, a CLAS advisor would know, but as there are no junior-senior level advisors in CLAS, there’s no possible way I could have or should have met with someone who would have known this rule.
Short story: For once, I think I did everything I was supposed to do, and I’m still probably going to be denied this degree.
Anyway, now I have his statement and mine saying, in effect, I never knew that this was required and was in fact told the opposite. It’s all in writing, it’s all in the right office, and now the whole question of whether I get a Poli Sci degree in addition to my English degree is in the hands of some nameless liberal arts committee.
I can’t imagine why I don’t feel optimistic.