3 Reasons to Dial W for Withdraw

Be it a last-minute degree change, a teacher you just cannot stand or for serious, personal issues, there are plenty of reasons why one might need to drop a class a few weeks or months into the semester.

While the University of Maryland’s fall schedule adjustment period may be over—the deadline to withdraw from a course with a ‘W’ on your transcript was Nov. 6—there are still plenty of people, myself included, who were more than hesitant to take the plunge by dropping a class before the cutoff point.

Here’s a few points noting why dropping a class late isn’t as dramatic as you may think.

1. It’s not difficult to drop a class.

For my first time considering and actually following through on a plan to remove myself from a class later in the semester, I thought the process was going to be super complicated. I envisioned a meeting with my advisor, a long waiting period and tons of pressure to change my mind. Instead, I logged on to Testudo, went to the drop/add section and was out of my class in five seconds flat. Talk about anticlimactic.

2.  No one’s going to be doing the work but you.

If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably tried to talk yourself around dropping in a million different ways even though you know that, ultimately, you want to be out of that class. No matter the opinions of your friends, family or advisors, you’re the one that has to follow through on doing the work and being in that classroom environment. And, in the end, you’re the one that’s going to receive a grade that will affect your GPA in the long run.

3. You’re an adult now!

The most empowering thing my father has reminded of throughout my college career is that I’m an adult now. I am in charge of how my life works. If I want to go out to eat late at night, I can do that. If I want to travel to another state, I can do that, too. And if you or I want to withdraw from a class that we don’t want to be in, well, we can do that as well.

Ultimately, the power is in our hands to direct our academic futures. I hope that the next time you feel compelled to rearrange your schedule or to get away from a class that may be hurting your well-being, you give yourself the authority to do so.