The rush to register for classes at Santa Rosa Junior College has hit a traffic jam.
So many students logged on to sign up for classes Monday, the first day of open registration for the fall, that the school's servers grounded to a near-halt.
"It's like everyone is getting on Highway 80 at the same time to get to Tahoe," said Diane Traversi, the school's director of admissions. "Everyone is inching along, but it's just not going to be that fast with everyone on there at the same time."
The delays come as the incentive to register early is at a peak. In response to budget cuts, SRJC reduced its course offerings by 11 percent. At the same time, student demand is well above the level seen this time last year.
As of Thursday afternoon, 13,670 students had signed up for classes during priority registration, which began June 27, a 9 percent increase from the same period last year.
Priority registration offers a head start to students who have fulfilled criteria, including by reaching certain levels of credits or meeting with counselors.
Registration Monday for all students opened at 6 a.m., though those dependent on college on-campus computers had to wait for school facilities to open two hours later.
Traversi said there were 50 students lined up near her office in Plover Hall when she arrived at 8 a.m.
She hasn't been immune to the delays herself. At 7 a.m., she tried to sign up her son, a high school student, for a P.E. class. It took 45 minutes to complete the process.
"Every screen is really slow," said Traversi, who expects around 5,000 students to enroll throughout the course of the day.