The Transcript Saga*
It’s finally over. What a week… after a stressful couple of days I’ve become best friends with a wonderful UPS lady and have made Ghetto U hate the sound of my voice and recognize me by first name (this is a school of 40 000 students… not bad, eh!). I also am possibly not friends with the registrar’s office at Hippie U for the time being, but let me start at the beginning…
Monday dawned bright, sunny and care-free. I arrived to my educational law class with my laptop, prepared to expand my knowledge of… something. While my professor droned on about something unimportant, I took a moment to check my university email. Amidst the junk Hippie U likes to send out, there was an email from the Education Office with one little statement that changed the course of my whole week. It read:
This is a reminder of the OSSTF Qualification Evaluation Workshop scheduled for this Thursday, January 22nd.
Official Transcript of degrees. Photocopies are not acceptable. If courses within degree are from another institution, official transcripts of these courses are also required.
(Note: OSSTF Qualification normally costs $125. Attendance at this workshop with all the documentation with you = a free application. No transcripts = $125 fee. Or so we were told.)
For those of you that don’t know, I only completed the last three years of my undergrad at Hippie U. I started my post-secondary career at Ghetto U in the city and achieved four credits there before transferring. Which meant that I needed a transcript. By Thursday.
I spent the next two hours trying to remember my log in for the university’s intranet system so that I could request a transcript. As it’s been four years since I accessed the system, it took me… oh… 20 tries? The fun part is that after every so many they lock you out of the system for an hour before you can try and log in again.
I was finally able to get in and request my transcript of four credits that already appear on my Hippie U transcript. I’m pretty sure they just wanted the logo. *sigh*
I woke up bright and early Tuesday to begin making my calls. I needed to a) confirm that my transcript had been printed and was ready; and b) arrange a courier to pick it up. I needed to leave by 9:30 in order to make my first class, so I thought that left me plenty of time to get things arranged.
My first phone call was to Ghetto U to confirm that they had printed my transcript was easy peasie. Next I called UPS to arrange a pick up. I called the 1 800 number and ended up with some guy who could barely speak English. As I was trying to explain my situation, he was giving me all these awful directions. I called GU again to find out if they knew what the UPS man was talking about, and they told me a) that they do not assist in the courier pick up in anyway, and b) it sounded like the UPS man was on drugs.
By this point it was already 9:45. I decided just to skip the first hour of my class and go downtown to the UPS store and talk to someone in person, thinking that I would be in and out. Ha. I arrived at the store at 10:30… and I was there until 11:45. I found this wonderful UPS angel who helped me for the next three days. The first step was fighting with the UPS in the City to have my transcript delivered overnight, so I would have it by Wednesday afternoon. We finally got that set up, but GU needed a label to attach to my transcript in order for UPS to be able to pick it up. This was a nightmare. The first person I talked said they could not do this under any circumstances as they were only responsible for printing the transcripts and nothing more. I called back and found someone who felt bad for me and allowed me to send the label to her personal email so she could attach it for me. WOO! Unfortunately, after half an hour the email had not gone through and she told me she would be on lunch between 12 – 1pm.
So–to clarify: UPS cannot pick up any parcel without this label.
I left UPS to try and catch the last two hours of my class. After begging for forgiveness from my professor I arrived in time for the luncheon she had provided. Shortly before she was to begin lecturing again, I slipped out to call GU about the label. I got a hold of my label lady, and she informed me that she had received the label, but wasn’t able to find my transcript and UPS had already come and attempted to pick up my transcript… unsuccessfully. No label + lost transcript = no pick up.
You see, GU printed my transcript in my maiden name, and the UPS label arrived in my married name so there was all this confusion. (Just to clarify, I had specifically requested that my transcript have my MARRIED name on the envelope. *sigh*)
So, I immediately tried calling my UPS angel to see if they could go back to pick up my package again. Unfortunately she had stepped out to run errands and I could do nothing but leave a message. As the minutes ticked by I grew less and less hopeful that it would be picked up as everyone I talked to (except my UPS angel) was getting rather annoyed with me. My wonderful friends tried to de-stress me–Wang Bone* even drew a picture of me getting my transcript…she has magic powers. But I’ll explain later. FINALLY, an hour or so later, she called back to tell me she had sweet talked the driver into going back for me, but that I needed to confirm with GU that all was ready to go. It was expected to arrive at 10am the next morning. So, I dialed the number and this was the gist of the conversation:
Me: “Hi there, I’m just calling to confirm that my transcript is ready to be picked up?”
GU Man: “Name?”
Me: “Shop Girl. I called earlier…”
GU Man (audibly less friendly and annoyed): “Ahh yes.. we’ve heard about you.”
He then abruptly told me that it was all together and ready to go and hung up the phone. (I’m pretty sure they didn’t want to talk to me anymore after that. haha) So, by 4pm I thought all was settled… except that I hadn’t receieved either of the transcripts I needed yet, and I had ordered Hippie U’s three weeks ago.
I left for class a little earlier than usual so that I could stop by my registrar’s office (my new favourite place! HA) to confirm that they had printed my transcript and mailed it. After calmly and politely explaining my situation to a nice young student working at the desk, her supervisor came over and attempted at what I think was “help”… this consisted of cutting me off every time I tried to answer a question or stress the urgency of why I needed the transcript. I honestly don’t think the woman could have been more rude to me… and I was honestly as polite as I could be under the circumstances. As it turned out, they had absolutely no record of whether or not my transcript had been printed so I fought until she went and printed me a new one, free of charge.
I felt a bit better having one transcript in my possession, but it was now noon and I had not yet heard from UPS. By 2pm I called to see if it had arrived… and my UPS angel informed me that not only had it not come, but there was absoltely no record of it in ANY UPS system. She had no idea where it was, when it was coming, or if it had even been picked up. She asked me to call GU again to confirm that UPS had in fact arrived the night before to pick up my transcript. After the number of calls I made the day before, I was too nervous to call, so a lovely lovely friend called for me. They weren’t even impressed to hear from “fake me”, but did confirm that it had been picked up before hanging up. So, all I could do was wait. There was a possibility that it could arrive the next morning (the morning of my 9:30am workshop) but no guarantee.
P.s. When I arrived home that night and checked my mail… my Hippie U transcript that I had ordered 3 weeks ago was sitting in my mailbox. Oh well. :)
I was absolutely exhauted when I woke up this morning. I was up late last night working on my essay and managed to get only 4 hours of sleep. But, like the keener student I am I jumped on the bus and headed to my workshop sans transcript, hoping that they would be reasonable and allow me to forward it once I received it. Thankfully my bus driver buddy was driving this morning and he kept me company / prevented me from dwelling on how angry / stressed I was until my little pink phone rang–my transcript had arrived!!
The Hubster, whom I love more than words can say, offered to pick it up and try and get it to me before the end of the workshop at 11am. I felt like a massive weight had been lifted off my shoulders… I didn’t have it yet, but it was in Senior’s City. That’s a start, right? I made it to the workshop and got through my application. Just as the facilitator announced that he was collecting applications the Hubster texted me that he had arrived–five minutes before the workshop ended. How’s that for good timing?
As I stapled my two transcripts to my application I felt soooo good. GU and UPS (minus my UPS angel) probably hate my guts, but I don’t care. It’s done!!
Moral of the story: Wang-Bone* has magical future-predicting drawing powers. Also, never ever attend more than one university, ever… and order 100 transcripts just to have on hand. You know, just in case.