The Chapel Office has modified its exemption policies for this semester, allowing students greater leeway to fulfill their credit requirements.
The new exemption policy is designed to make it easier for students with schedule conflicts to satisfy the Chapel requirement and remain off Chapel probation.
Mark Jackson, associate director of student organizations and programs, said he thinks the new policy will benefit students with busy schedules.
“We (think the change) will help students, especially students that have to work a lot,” Jackson said. “It’ll help their schedules and they won’t have to panic and think, ‘OK, how am I supposed to get all these credits? I’m working all the time.'”
Under the former system, students needed to be exempt for at least two days per week to be eligible for a 48-credit requirement. A three-day exemption meant 36 credits were needed, and a four-day exemption required 24. If a student was exempt every day, he or she was expected to secure 12 Chapel credits.
This semester, a student is required to attain 10 fewer credits than the regular 55 for every day of the week he or she is exempt from Chapel. A student with five exemptions now needs five credits throughout the semester.
Timothy Hoffbauer, from Los Alamos, New Mexico, worked at the Money Student Recreation and Wellness Center last semester and was exempt every day of the week. He said the changes to the policy were welcomed.
“I think it’s great that they’re going down to just needing five,” Hoffbauer said, “because when you can’t come into Chapel all five days of the week, it’s still really hard to even come to forums, especially when you have a junior or senior schedule.”
Corinne Sheffield, junior elementary education major from McKinney, has three exemptions per week and said the modification came as a relief.
“I think it’s really nice of (the Chapel office) to lower the requirements,” she said, “because students are under a lot of stress as it is “¦ with all the stuff that we already have to do. I think 25 is a good number.”
Sheffield said Chapel forums are useful for students with exemptions.
“They’re helpful,” Sheffield said. “I’m probably going to go to forums to get to 25. I think they’re really good things because I think a lot of people would be on Chapel probation without them.”
Jackson said the cause of the change stemmed from the Chapel office not offering as many forums as in previous semesters. Fewer forums meant fewer opportunities for students unable to be at Chapel to attain their credits.
“If you are exempt from Chapel for five days, how do you get 12 credits?” Jackson said. “We feel like this will help the students who have to work, do so, but also hopefully not end up on Chapel probation.”