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Fun Fall Fillers: Four Interesting Courses to Fallback On

Photo Courtesy of Turni//Flickr

Fun courses offered at Clemson cover a wide variety of activities and sports, from drama to ultimate frisbee and meditation to swing, shag and ballroom dancing lessons.

Ahh, class registration season! There’s nothing like copying down all your CRN codes, eagerly waiting to refresh the register page in the seconds before your designated time. Come to find out, you couldn’t get into that required film class because a bunch of slacker seniors and athletes had higher priority. 

While most students at Clemson have given up at this point if they didn’t apply to the honors college or take enough AP classes in high school, there will no doubt be quite a few freshman who will be salty that they didn’t get what they wanted for the upcoming semester. That’s not to mention those who have to have a certain number of hours a semester to keep scholarships. 

Well, consider yourself in luck, as The Tiger is once again here to save the day (and your schedule) with some of the most entertaining filler courses at Clemson! While none of these classes are essential, per se, they will no doubt provide a very fun and interesting four months.


Structure of Drama

Everyone likes a good play, right? If you answered no, I genuinely feel sorry for your poor Oscar Wilde-less lives, but if yes, then do I have a class for you! Essentially acting like your typical structure class where you write a sample and workshop it, there is one defining trait of this theatre-themed course that sets it apart from its brethren: everyone’s short scene gets acted out by you and your classmates. 

While this might sound terrifying — and admittedly, it is at the beginning — this class is all about discovering your strengths as a writer. Whether it be a dramatic script involving friends growing apart or a comedic skit about an infomercial salesman, there are no limits to what you can do and no prior acting or writing experience is necessary. 

Also, the usual teacher for the course, Carol Collins, is one of the sweetest human beings alive and will help you in any way possible if you happen to be struggling.


Human Sexual Behavior

When a class has over 500 student spots every semester and yet it still manages to be packed mere minutes after the registration opens for the first time, you know that you must have picked a good choice. While I personally haven’t taken Human Sexual Behavior before, the concept sounds pretty interesting, as there is certainly a wealth of information on this particular subject that isn’t really taught in high school health courses — or really anywhere else, as evidenced by how many shotgun weddings that I’ve seen after high school. 

Many great things have been said about the course’s professor, Ben King, and despite an awkward introduction that he apparently does every semester, he is supposedly very entertaining and quite informative too.


Leisure Skills Courses

Leisure skills classes tend to get a lot of undeserved crap for not being a normal three credit hour course. Sure, you could be taking another engineering class or one entirely on Chaucer, but who cares about that when you could get an easy “A” bowling? 

Because they are worth only one credit hour, most of these classes are pretty relaxed and meet only once a week for around an hour or so. The sheer variety and amount are AMAZING. Feeling stressed out? Take a meditation course at Fike and do some yoga nidra. Looking to run your first 5k or marathon? Take a running course and learn all the things you have to keep in mind to stay safe. Need to learn some new moves for an upcoming wedding? Take any of the basic or intermediate classes for swing, shag and ballroom dances to impress everyone on the dance floor. 

There are so many topics and activities to choose from here, so if you don’t at least take one leisure skill during college, you’re doing yourself a bit of a disservice.


Literally Anything Taught By Allen Swords

I am known by my friends to be a fairly neutral person who only gets excited by something when it is genuinely THAT good. So, when I say that Allen Swords is hands-down, no competition, the single greatest professor and human being alive, you know I truly mean it. 

Being at Clemson University for three years at this point, I have yet to hear anything evenly remotely terrible about him, and considering how fickle some can be, that’s saying something. As kind, hilarious and intelligent as they come, you will always get something out of any of the various classes he teaches, both in knowledge and maybe even a life lesson or two. 

His classes are usually reading- and discussion-based, like most English classes, but don’t let it deter you if that doesn’t immediately strike your fancy. The readings are acceptable in size and fairly comprehensible, and he is always willing to help you out if you are struggling with a discussion question in class. There is literally no con to taking a class with Swords, so what are you waiting for?

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