Snarky Behavior

Unregistered Student or Illegal Alien?

November 19, 2007 · Leave a Comment

[Blitzer]:  Senator Obama, it seems the nature of the question lends itself to a yes or no answer:  “Would you extend student identification privileges to an undocumented student?”

[Obama]:  Now, this is a red herring argument.  These people aren’t coming to this University to get discounted movie tickets.  They’re coming here to enroll in classes.  What we need is comprehensive reform of our registration policies, so that we don’t have instances where we have these undocumented students.  We need to have a registration system that works, that doesn’t lock out people who are on the path to becoming legal students.  One that perhaps has the course listings, degree requirements, course descriptions, prerequisites, course approval requirements, and availability all in the same place, so we don’t have instances where students are falling through the cracks.

[Blitzer]:  An evasive answer to a simple question.  Let me pose this to the floor.  Congressman Kucinich:  where do you stand on this issue of illegal students?

[Kucinich]:  I take offense to the term “illegal.”  These are human beings, they’re just living their lives.  They’re undocumented, yes, but that’s because we make the path to documentation so utterly convoluted that we end up with situation at hand.

[Blitzer]:  Let’s hear from someone who’s not a hippie Keebler elf.  Senator Clinton, what is your take on this issue?

[Clinton]:  Well, as a carpetbagging New Yorker, this is an issue that’s very dear to my heart.  A lot of my constituents are dealing with these illegal students.  What if they have a seizure on campus?  How would we know where to send the medical bills?  Look: the fact is, in today’s global economy, our students are going to need to have the skills to navigate through a poorly constructed bureaucratic online system.  I say: give them their identification cards, and let them figure out the rest.

[Edwards]:  If I’m not mistaken, Senator Clinton just gave two different answers [confused eyebrow look].  That was a lot of words!

[Clinton]:  I don’t appreciate the mud-slinging from Senator Edwards.

[Edwards]:  With all due respect Senator Clinton, I’m from North Carolina… I sling tar.

[Clinton]:  [abruptly spastic laughter]

[Blitzer]:  Let’s get a Republican take on this issue.  Mr. Giuliani, as a New Yorker yourself, how do you feel about Columbia’s registration policies?

[Giuliani]:  Well first of all, this is an international school we’re talking about.  60% of the students are foreign born.  In a post 9/11 environment, we cannot afford to have undocumented students running around our universities, thinking that they’re registered for the following semester, when in reality they’ve neglected to enroll in the accompanying discussion sections, which have since been blocked out, or get departmental approval.  This is a security issue.  What if someone from India or Pakistan, with proficient IT skills, hacks our system and replaces it with one that’s fully functional and meets the needs of the students enrolling?  I think we can agree, this is an unacceptable risk we can’t afford to take.

[Blitzer]:  So what is your proposed solution?

[Giuliani]:  Well, first of all, we need to firewall the system.  Lock the students out if they’ve been inactive for longer than 3 minutes.

[Blitzer]:  I believe that’s already the case…

[Giuliani]:  Well, on a related issue, the Democrats seem to be flirting with this idea of amnesty: of letting students into impacted classes after they’ve missed their registration appointments, or because they improperly registered, or because they’ve failed to get instructor approval.  This is preposterous.  We need to identify those students who have improperly registered and give them “guest student” status, whereupon they can still pay full tuition to take classes they have no interest in, or otherwise don’t help their degree requirements or field of concentration, until the following semester.

I could keep going with this for hours on end.  Hey Columbia, your enrollment procedures suck.  See: UCLA Registrar for guidance.

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