After years of Kansas University classes beginning on Thursdays, the first day of classes for the fall semester will be on Monday.
Tuesday, 8 a.m.: Jayhawker Towers open
Wednesday, 8 a.m.: Residence and scholarship halls open for women registered with sorority recruitment.
Friday, 8 a.m.: Residence and scholarship halls open for all students.
Saturday, 8 p.m.: Traditions Night at Memorial Stadium
Sunday, 7 p.m.: Opening Convocation at Lied Center
Monday: First day of classes
KU’s residence halls open on Friday.
Jennifer Wamelink, associate director for student housing, said the time to watch for increased traffic near Corbin Hall, 420 W. 11th St., is on Wednesday, when residence and scholarship halls open for women registered for sorority recruitment.
Gertrude Sellards Pearson Hall will be closed this year for renovations, she said.
Hawk Week, which features a series of welcome-to-campus events for students, will get into full swing on Friday, Wamelink said, and related activities will largely move to the first week of classes.
Traditions Night, where new Jayhawks flock to Memorial Stadium to learn how to wave the wheat and a host of other KU traditions, will be on Saturday night.
Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little will speak at the university’s opening convocation on Sunday night.
Several key KU departments, including admissions, financial aid and the University Advising Center, will be open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday to accommodate new students.
The academic calendar changed for several reasons, said George Bittlingmayer, a distinguished professor of business who chaired a university governance committee that looked at the calendar changes.
The changes were possible after approval from the Kansas Board of Regents to lower the number of instructional days in the calendar from 150 to 146.
“We got the semester down to the same length as a lot of other schools,” he said.
That means no more Thursday and Friday classes hanging out by themselves in the beginning of the semester, and a slightly longer winter break, which is good for study abroad programs and international students, he said.
The committee also discussed removing fall break, Bittlingmayer said.
“Some suggested we have the whole Thanksgiving week off and no fall break,” he said.
Eventually the committee decided to leave it in at the insistence of students. But fall break will move to Monday and Tuesday this year, Oct. 10-11, to provide a better balance between classes that meet Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and classes that meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays, Bittlingmayer said.
When fall break was on a Thursday and Friday, he said, and with students off on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday already for Thanksgiving, classes with Friday lab sections were particularly affected, he said.
“I feel good. I think that we did the right thing,” he said. “It’s a little strange, I think, though, for people who are used to starting class on a Thursday.”