An Ode to Re-Enrolment

Friday, 13 February, 2015
Photo courtesy Visualpanic (

Photo courtesy Visualpanic (


The process of enrolling and I have always had a love-hate relationship. Actually it’s more like a hate-hate relationship, if it’s possible for a computer-generated system to hate a human being (and I’m pretty sure it is). It all started in early December of 2013, when I was faced with the task of re-enrolling for my second year of university. “An easy task!” I hear you claim, and yes, that’s what I thought too.


But oh how I was wrong.


It seemed so simple. A few clicks of a button here, a password there, and you were done! I left my first attempt at re-enrolment feeling empowered and a little smug. If I can re-enrol, is there anything I can’t do?


But my re-enrolment journey was far from over. In fact, it had really only just begun. Let’s skip forward a month. It wasn’t until mid-January when I had the thought to log on to the portal to see what was up (chalk it up to holiday boredom). The moment I logged on I realised that something wasn’t right. On the left hand side of the page was a tab entitled ‘Notices’. Usually it sat there, unassuming and polite. Yet on this day, an angry red flag had appeared over the tab. I realised that this flag meant I had a new notice, so with a deep breath… I clicked.


A $100 fine for not enrolling? I couldn’t believe it! Had I not sat at this very screen over a month ago and re-enrolled like the upstanding student that I am? After getting over the initial shock, all of the pieces of the puzzle started to fall into place.  It turns out that re−enrolling isn’t as simple as it’s made out to be. I had made one tiny error and I was quite literally paying for it. After selecting my subjects, as per  the system’s instructions, they had appeared on my Study Plan in a rather lovely yellow colour. It was here I made my crucial mistake for there was one more step awaiting me. After all the clicking and the password-entering and the subject-choosing, I had failed to scroll down the bottom and press ‘enrol’.


No huge ‘ENROL’ button. No little paper clip to say, “Hi, you’re about to click off this page but you haven’t pressed enrol, would you like to?” Nothing but a tiny button at the bottom of the page where no-one can see it.


My first experience of re-enrolment left me $100 down, but I did learn one very valuable lesson.


Never underestimate your enemy.