Five-Star Fridays Benefits Some, Troubles Others


By Brooklyn Dennison, Editor-in-Chief

About 56 percent of students feel positive about Five-Star Fridays, a recent anonymous survey of 52 participants conducted by The Buchtelite showed.

Five-Star Fridays is one of the recent initiatives implemented by The University of Akron earlier this year. The initiative will eliminate Friday classes for most students, leaving the day open to allow students to utilize programs available to them at UA and to work.

The survey found that many students, about 69 percent, will enjoy not having classes on Friday. When asked about their thoughts on Five-Star Fridays in a write-in question on the anonymous survey, one participant said they think it is a great idea. It will give them time to do extra activities and study more, they said.

However, some are skeptical that students will utilize Fridays for extracurricular activities and work. Kelsey Hurley, a public relations student, said the biggest issue she sees happening with the initiative is that students won’t use the extra day for what it’s intended for.

Another survey participant said the initiative will not be utilized the way the administration would like it to. They said students are not going to use Friday’ productively; they will party and sleep, not study, intern or do productive things.

Along with not using Fridays productively, another issue students seem to have with the initiative is the potential for burnout. One anonymous survey participant said: “I feel that the longer, more intense class days throughout the week won’t make the Fridays feel worth it. Honestly, I just need to experience it to get my feelings around it in check. I just think I will get burnt out on the longer classes.”

In fact, about 44 percent of the survey participants agreed that they may experience burnout with the Five-Star Friday’s schedule, although, some students are unphased by the change in schedule because they are used to scheduling to have classes only two days a week.

One survey participant said that they already only have classes two days a week from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. due to their busy work schedule, so it won’t affect them much. They said it accommodates them very well though because now they have the option to attend class on Mondays and Wednesdays instead of just Tuesdays and Thursdays.

A recurring theme seems to be that the initiative assists students well if they are used to scheduling classes on a Tuesday and Thursday only basis. The rest of the students may be overcoming conflicts in their schedule.

“It’s a nice idea, but I feel like the scheduling is a hassle for some,” a student, Natalie Mitchell, said.

In an interview with President Matthew Wilson in January, he said the University would try to streamline the class schedule. This would occur with implementing an improved scheduling software and would also happen naturally with having a Monday, Wednesday and a Tuesday, Thursday class schedule, he said.

Nevertheless, some students had difficulty scheduling their classes for the fall semester.

A student who participated in the survey said that the Five-Star Fridays schedule made it extremely difficult for them to schedule their classes as most of their classes were being offered at the same time.

The initiative may also negatively affect those with mental or physical health problems as having extended school days may not create the best environment for healthcare. Students may not get the breaks in the day they need to address health problems

Five-Star Fridays will not be implemented until the fall semester but students can see their schedule when they register for fall classes. Students’ opinions on the initiative may change, for better or for worse, after they have experienced it implemented.

To see the full Buchtelite report of Five-Star Fridays, go to this website.