Study Buddies Society Encounters Temporary Tutor Shortage

The Study Buddies Society tutoring program, which pairs students with tutors, recently struggled to provide “buddies” for students.

With the commencement of second semester, the number of tutors enrolled in SBS dropped drastically. The lack of tutors entailed a temporary lack of tutelage, as some students were unable to partner up with mentors; however, the number of tutors has been sufficiently  increased thanks to helpful staff members.

“[At the beginning of the semester,] I got a huge influx of tutees,” Para-educator and SBS Coordinator Clay Stiver said. “I just flat-out ran out. I had no more tutors.”

Study Buddies experienced a shortage of tutors, forcing some tutees to go without help. With the assistance of the staff, the program managed to replenish their tutor pool. Photo by Akshay Agrawal.

As a result of the shortage of tutors, SBS was unable to perform as it does under normal circumstances. Unlike last semester, where each student received one-to-one attention, this semester, many students had to compromise for group tutoring sessions, while others were outright denied help.

“At times, there weren’t too many tutors and some of the tutees sat idly and they didn’t have anything to do,” tutor junior Hemanth Kini said. “[Then] they would have to leave.”

Stiver attributed the scarcity of tutors to the toll second semester has upon students. Juniors, overloaded with classes, may have discontinued their tutoring services due to their burdensome workload. Conversely, seniors may have succumbed to senioritis. Stiver did note, however, that such shortages of tutors are not altogether surprising—second semester induced shortages are not unprecedented, if uncommon.

In order to refill their pool of tutors, SBS sent emails to the staff, asking them to recruit students—multiple staff members contributed to the search for students. Both Stiver and special education worker Seema Tandon praised the actions of the Biology department in particular, especially science teachers Renee Fallon and Pooya Hajjarian. The efforts of the teachers have significantly increased the tutor to tutee ratio, putting an end to the shortage of tutors.

“As far as I know, all the tutees in my class have tutors,” Kini said.  “It’s been going pretty smoothly.”

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