The tradeoffs of college life

Students unable to balance work and school should apply for the 13-credit exemption.

by Daily Editorial Board

Students unable to balance work and school should apply for the 13-credit exemption.

Most college students need to work in order to pay for basic living expenses, to say nothing of the rising cost of tuition. For students who worked at least 21 hours per week and had a full course load this year, 60 percent said their work interfered with their academics, according to the 2012 National Survey of Student Engagement. The survey, which is conducted annually, found that students often did not have enough money to pay for regular expenses like food, transportation and other basic needs. The survey also found that of students who were already working, the majority had looked into working more hours even if it interfered with their classes.

Undergraduate students at the University of Minnesota must pay a flat tuition rate based on 13 credits even if they take 12 or fewer credits. However, full-time students who are working 15 to 20 hours a week at a job, or are doing an internship relevant to their chosen major, can apply to pay by the credit by filling out a 13-credit exemption request form on One Stop. Graduating seniors who need fewer than 26 credits to graduate can also apply to be exempted from the 13-credit policy.

It seems an increasing number of students at the University aren’t able to complete the amount of reading or studying classes require because they are busy making sure they can pay rent and buy groceries. For students who have particularly demanding schedules and important commitments outside of school, applying for the 13-credit exemption is a viable option worth consideration.