Adam Leonard, Contributing Writer
No matter how hard you try, you can’t please everyone.
This sentiment is all too true on the campus of West Liberty University. If you are a member of the campus community you have undoubtedly had to deal with the “supposed” problem of parking. Most of the complaints would come from students claiming that there are no spaces close to the buildings where their classes are. This results in double parking and parking in the grass.
These complaints are usually met with a response to park in the Beta lot, or a ticket for illegal parking. But who is right in this continuing battle? The student who is running late and parks in a visitor spot, or the cop that prowls the lots ticketing creatively parked vehicles? Either way parking seems to be an unavoidable issue that no one seems to be able to escape from.
With such a clear split in loyalties both sides of the argument need to be placed under scrutiny to find who is really at fault for this continuing “problem”. Is the University to blame for selling 1,679 student parking passes with only 1,118 student parking spots available?
This mishap in planning could potentially leave 561 pass holding students without anywhere to park. Not only did sales of student passes exceed the total number of student spots, but sales of student passes surpassed the total number of spots on campus, which is only 1,473 .
With parking passes being sold for seventy-five dollars each, it is easy to see why students would be upset about having nowhere to park. The school claims that due to commuting and other factors all of the students who hold passes are never on campus at the same time and therefore do not cause a problem.
This is an optimistic outlook on the situation but far from the answers students want to hear. Let’s just say that the planets aligned and every tag holding student just so happened to be on campus at the same time. What then West Liberty? Tickets for parking in the grass?
This isn’t about bashing the campus planners, so I will redirect my focus to the “victims” of this dispute now. Here it is students. As a senior who never lived on campus, here are my tips to help you find parking on campus.
Compose your schedule to fit your needs. Do you hate waking up for early classes? Schedule all night block classes to ensure that you can sleep off that hangover all day and still find a parking spot for class at night.
Maybe you are an early riser. Even though eight AM seems early to some, it may not be for others. Grab your Redbull and start a petition for six AM classes. This would ensure that you are always the first to campus and would have first shot at parking in the morning. This is the next best thing to pitching a tent on the quad.
Another option for the lazy irregular sleeping student is online courses. Graduate college in your underwear while you sit and scratch and surf Facebook. Online classes ensure that you can function at optimal laziness at all times. Who says you can’t graduate college with an XBox controller in one hand and a beer in the other?
Suppose though that you don’t want to deal with the daunting task of scheduling. There are still other solutions to the parking dilemma. Some students try to use visitor parking passes for the entire semester and often get caught and ticketed. This never works because visitor spots are the first spaces that are checked for violators.
An alternative would be to secure yourself a handicap space. There are only 43 handicap spaces in the entire school but they are seldom all filled. I’m not telling you to go swipe the hangtag from your grandma’s Oldsmobile, but find a creative solution to get yourself one of these tags.
Do everything in your power to break a leg over summer break. Get some buddies and think of a creative solution. This will ensure that you receive both a tag and sympathy as you hobble around campus. Be selective though while maiming yourself in the name of parking. No one is going to give a handicap pass to someone with a broken arm that can easily walk. Go big or go home. Nothing else ensures a handicap tag like two leg casts up to the hip.
No matter what your stance may be on the issue, parking is, and will continue to be one of the most hotly debated topics on campus. Although the school may change, the attitude and behaviors of college students do not. So kids, don’t get discouraged. We are in college and can do anything we set our minds to. Find a plan that works best for you, and guard that secret closely.
I’m not telling you what to do. I’m just merely another student who has almost made it through the system. I give you my advice to do with it what you will.
While you’re looking for a parking space this semester just remember: if you have to walk, consider it your first step in prevention against the freshman fifteen.