Students and alumna share their thoughts on the newly added January term

Quincy University has added a January term (J-term) for the 2020-2021 academic year. The J-term will be offered free of charge for most undergraduate students between the fall and spring semesters and will last for three weeks. All J-term classes will be held solely online for 2021 due to COVID-19.

The three week stretch starts January 4, 2021, and ends on January 22, 2021, with grades due at noon on January 25, 2021.

In a release on July 9, 2020, QU president Brian McGee, Ph.D., spoke on how the J-term came to fruition.

“For months, QU has planned to introduce the January term, or J-term, in 2022. However, we believe the J-term could be helpful to many students during the COVID-19 pandemic, so we are making it available for the first time in January 2021,” McGee said.

McGee also spoke on how the addition of a J-term will benefit students.

“Our new January term will provide a four-year student an extra four courses, the equivalent of a full-time semester, at no additional expense to the student. This is still another way that QU provides extraordinary value to our students,” McGee said.

As the fall semester comes to an end, students at QU will soon enter winter break and their first J-term.

Brittany Orf, QU senior, spoke highly of the benefits of having a J-term.

“I think adding a J-term to QU is a smart idea, especially during the pandemic. I think students that take J-term classes may be able to get ahead in their credits and graduate earlier than they expected,” Orf said.

Orf is graduating this semester, but touched how the J-term will help students through the unique academic year.

“If I were still taking classes during the J-term, I believe that having a longer break and taking J-term classes might be able to help me focus more. It has been so difficult being able to focus in class during the pandemic,” Orf said. “ I think it is a great idea.”

Matthew Goertz, student of Austin Community College, had never heard of a J-term or anything quite like it but thought of it in a positive manner.

“Ideally, yes, I would take it to help finish my schooling a bit faster,” Goertz said.

Lori Miller, QU alumna, pondered how having a J-term might’ve helped her during her time on campus.

“I really wish this would have been offered when I was a student in the late ‘90s. I would have loved the opportunity to have taken some extra classes over break so that I could have potentially graduated earlier,” Miller said.

Miller also expressed her concerns with potential issues in registering for classes, as they have maxed out at 17 students or less.

“If students are unable to register for a J-term class, due to capacity issues or other problems, would QU offer them a summer term included in their tuition?” Miller said.

QU is not alone in offering a January term for its students. Elon University, Middlebury College, and New York University also do so.

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