News / Student Life

SEEK Program Offers Priority Registration Amid Increase in Student Enrollment

SEEK student checking her registration date on CUNYfirst, Photo by: Carol Bautista

The Search for Education, Elevation and Knowledge program at Hunter College, commonly known as SEEK, is allowing its admitted students to register for classes early for the Fall 2024. With other specialty programs also offering the same academic support, some students said this leaves the rest of the student body to choose from a limited course selection.

SEEK is a program geared towards higher education providing academic and financial assistance to qualifying students who meet a specific gross family income and academic benchmark. Admitted students must complete a mandatory six-week summer bridge program and enroll in Hunter as SEEK students in the Fall. Afterward, students have additional requirements that they must follow throughout their enrollment to stay in Hunter.

SEEK announced the opportunity for its students to register early on the Hunter SEEK Hub on Jan. 29.

SEEK Director Vanderie Vielie said she advocated for early registration as she found that, even though the opportunity was there, it wasn’t made possible despite the program’s existence at Hunter for many years.

SEEK Director Vanderie Vielie, Photo by: Carol Bautista

The student registration period is dependent on the number of credits earned within the student’s classification. However, students with disabilities, honors, scholars, scholarships, athletes in competition season, veterans and now SEEK students, will be able to register for classes on May 2, while other Hunter students have a later date.

Five months before the announcement, Hunter revealed on Instagram that the class of 2027 was the biggest incoming class in Hunter’s history. According to Vielie, there were more than 100 students in SEEK’s freshman cohort for 2022 and 2023, higher than in previous years.

“Hunter enrollment has increased over the last year or two… and our SEEK program has grown a tiny bit so that’s all students going for the same classes, the same seats,” said Vielie. “It just seemed like [registering] that challenge became even more challenging.”

When Vielie became the director over a year ago and news of Hunter’s increased enrollment hit social media, Vielie found herself in the right position at the right time to ask the Division of Student Affairs to approve the move for early decision. She said the SEEK program now feels like a community with a social aspect to it.

Many SEEK students approve the move.

“I think it’s a really good benefit for students who may not get the same opportunities as other students in the school,” said Anastasia Mantel, a SEEK junior majoring in Psychology and Women and Gender Studies. “Makes me feel less stressed about registering for classes.”

However, some Hunter students don’t understand why others have priority registration.

“I honestly compare it [registering for classes] to trying to fight for concert tickets and that’s not ideal at all…They [other students] might fear how much worse the scheduling process will be for upcoming semesters,” said Daniela Gonzalez, a General Psychology major.

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