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200 business students rejected from advanced standing program

By Jay Dirner
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
March 24, 2000
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About 700 business and public administration students blazed a trail on Feb. 26, becoming the first business majors in the country to interview for advanced standing.

This week, about 200 of them who were not accepted will begin re-assessing their collegiate plans.

Business students are required to attain advanced standing in order to complete upper-division coursework needed for their degree.

According to an Karl Eller College of Business and Public Administration press release, dwindling resources and increasing student enrollment forced the college to become more selective this year. The new, more competitive advanced standing program not only includes prerequisite classes and a minimum GPA, but now a personal interview as well.

Business officials expect the interviews to improve the quality of their programs, and many students said it will make the Eller College more competitive.

"The new interview process will ensure that solid candidates will become part of the program which will, in turn, increase the quality of the program and the national recognition of the Eller College," stated Lindsay Galbut, a marketing senior, in the press release.

"I think it set apart people who knew what they were doing," said Paul Gavigan, a marketing sophomore who just received advanced standing. "I knew people who didn't even know how to dress up. I think it lets them (the Eller College) choose exactly who they want. They want to know they're recruiting people who have career goals and direction."

Still, some students said the interview process is unnecessary and BPA should explore other ways to improve the college.

Jimmy Farley, a finance freshman, said he was not aware of the need to interview for advanced standing.

"I think BPA should go by the numbers," Farley said. "Some people have better people skills than others but may still not be as smart."

Jennifer Roberts, vice president of Alpha Kappa Psi, one of two business fraternities on campus, said students' reactions to the interviews were mixed.

"Some felt that it was not a huge deal because they felt that the interview was not weighted heavily," said Roberts, a management information systems and finance junior, in an e-mail interview. "However, there were many students that felt if they had met course and grade requirements that they should be accepted."

Roberts added that BPA officials could be exploring other options to improve the quality of the school.

"The problem at hand for the entire college is the amount of staff provided," she said. "It is simply not enough to handle the amount of students who want to be business majors. The college receives a lot of money ... it would best suit the students to increase the amount of staff."

Business students and staff members said help is available for students who do not receive advanced standing and for those with little interviewing experience.

Pamela Fick, program coordinator for the Eller College, said the college has resources for the 200 students who did not attain advanced standing.

"All students who don't get into the upper division will be sent an e-mail that will outline that they can see our director of advising, who will really work with them and look at their options," Fick said.

Gavigan, a member of the BPA student council, said students can get interviewing experience by participating in any business club, all of which are overseen by the student council.

However, Roberts said the new competition will deter students from declaring business majors in the first place.

"Students are not happy, and all that this new process is going to do is drop the levels of enrollment at the college," she said.

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