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On being a class registration whiz…


Rachael Grenfell-Dexter

The exotic aroma of Kenyan coffee brewing in my coffee pot diffuses through my small kitchen. If it wasn’t 7 o’clock in the morning, I would be more excited take that a sip of that hot beverage that deeply reminds me of home. But, I am in my dorm and it is registration day. I, being a general self-declared registration whiz, am gearing up and getting ready for that moment, at 8 o’clock, when registration opens and, inevitably, tensions get a little high as students attempt to get into the classes they want.

Like many schools, Vanderbilt’s registration functions on an online system called YES (Your enrollment services–which I secretly get a kick out of saying). Coming from a high school where everything was paper-based, YES is a breath of relief. However, there are still a couple of tips I have to share with everyone, whether you are an incoming freshman or wise rising senior.

1) Make sure you have no “holds” on your account

Every student registering automatically has a “hold” on their account. This “hold” is released after you have consulted with your pre-major or major advisor. I can’t help but mention the number of times I have heard of students getting their classes planned out, but not being able to register during their period since they had forgotten to speak with their advisor. So, plan ahead!

2) You will move up the food chain: Stay on the waitlist!

Registration periods are assigned based on seniority. Although this was a little annoying at first, it is a very useful privilege as you progress through your college career. Many upperclassmen have less leeway and stricter schedules to keep to, having that benefit allows them to make sure they complete all their requirements. Still, do not be discouraged if you do not get into a class. Stay on the waitlist! Though a waitlist may seem hopeless, schedules do change. During the first week of classes, registration is still open and many students change their schedule, leaving open spots for the class’ waitlist. I have gotten into many classes, including my Country Music class, by waiting it out.

3) Hold practice runs

Yes (no pun intended), I am that person. I hold practice runs.There is a help tab that breaks down exactly how YES works and how to use it. The YES website doesn’t refresh automatically, so if you log on before 8 o’clock and do not refresh your webpage after the registration window opens at 8 o’clock, the option to enroll will not be available. Every registration period, I get my online world clock pulled up, and at precisely 8 I refresh my window and register. I’m just saying…those few seconds could make a difference!


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