The East Texan

Giving thanks to a splendid university

Andrew Burnes, Editor

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Sometimes we, as students of Texas A&M University-Commerce, can get big-headed. We think that we can sleep wherever we want to sleep while we’re under the magnificent A&M-Commerce lion banner. We think that we, who are mere mortals just passing through, have a say in the legacy that is the 125 years of excellence that this institution has provided. For God’s sake, the people that first attended school here were still remembering the Alamo!

It’s only natural. Often, the university will ask you to give feedback about your classes or about the ungodly, multi-year construction around this place just to make you feel that you, as an individual, matter. They’ll congratulate you and shake your hand when you finally reach the point when you can be handed your diploma, give you a pat on the head and say, “Good work, Kid. But don’t forget, if you really want to succeed, you’re probably going to need a Master’s Degree, as well. Luckily, we offer them right here at your home, Texas A&M University-Commerce!” It’s all masterfully done.

But, by far, the most humbling thing they’ll do to you as a student of this university is to tell you where to park. Just when you think that you’re on an equal playing field with your professors and janitors, they’ll remind you that you just haven’t paid your dues, yet. You can’t park next to the building your next class is in, silly, those spots are reserved for people who are better than you. Maybe in a few years, after another few thousand dollars, you’ll be enough of a person to warrant such a parking place. Maybe.

So I’d like to personally take this time to thank the university for everything that they do. I’d like to thank them for charging $40 for the opportunity and the privilege to park half a mile away from where I need to go. I’d like to thank them for telling my fellow students where to lay their heads at night after another long day in the salt mines. And I’d particularly like to thank that professor out there who doesn’t care to take the time to respond to students who ask him to do a simple task for them and instead force them to find a friendly graduate of East Texas State University to help them out. Thank you so much.

But I’d like to give a special thanks to the officers of UPD. I want to thank them for making sure that our university is a safe place by busting all of you pot-smoking heathens out there (you know who you are). I’d like to thank them for gazing through their little SUV windows at us like we’re nothing but hunks of meat, because we aren’t. But I’d particularly like to thank them for wearing their badges with pride and diligently patrolling the dangerous parking lots around campus to make sure that only the worthy park in our parking lots; make sure that everybody is in their place. Because God forbid we forget to go by the One Stop Shop and pay our annual $40 for the new, beautiful 125 Anniversary parking sticker and mistakenly park in a parking lot we foolishly and erroneously think is far enough away from civilization to be acceptable. From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank God for each and every one of you. God only knows what would happen if we were all treated equally.

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3 Responses to “Giving thanks to a splendid university”

  1. Joy on September 26th, 2014 5:44 pm

    None of the things you complained about is a big deal. Get over it. If you think everything is going to be rosy and fair and equal when you graduate (with whichever degree you determine suits you), think again. This is life. Park, and walk. While you are walking to class maybe you can figure out why you have such a negative response to such mundane things.

  2. Badpenny on September 29th, 2014 3:17 pm

    After having read this article I have to say I agree with Joy. First and foremost, I think it is important to remember that the school does not have the ability to speed up the construction which is contracted out through the City (which doesn’t have control of the contractors doing the work). Secondly, the University doesn’t state that you “need a Master’s Degree” to succeed. That’s the job market. The professors at the University simply prepare you for the likelihood of a prolonged job search in the event that you are unable to find a job with a bachelor’s degree.

    The third issue I have with this article is the parking problem. While I agree that UPD fines for people who park without a permit are expensive, it is also true that you do not have to have a permit to attend this University. I have been a student here for five years and have never once absolutely needed to park in the lot. Of course there are some individuals who have some sort of crippling illness or disease that prevents them from walking to class but every individual I have met that falls under this exemption has had no problems with the University in acquiring some sort of relief through the school. I think this is a case of someone being upset that they are expected to grow up.

    Finally I would like to say that this article is a poor attempt at sarcasm. While I appreciate the whole edgy aspect of blaming the school and the University police for your imagined slights it is important to make sure that these issues actually matter.

  3. Andrew Burnes on September 30th, 2014 3:58 pm

    Happy to see that my writing has invoked such a passionate response!

    This article is merely a reflection of the frustrations built up in my mind on that day. Naturally, it’s true that the University has nothing to do with the pace of the construction, its $1 million contribution did lead to the city spreading out the project more and resulting in a longer time frame.

    Also, I agree that students who live on campus do not necessarily need to drive and park, myself being one of them. However, as there are 10,000 students enrolled here that do not live on campus, I find that the current situation is rather dismal, especially as President Jones’ enrollment aspirations are for A&M-Commerce to serve 20,000 students by 2020. If you’re ok with having to fight to park when there are plenty of parking spots available in “faculty parking,” then great! You’re ok with it. Clearly we have disparaging opinions on the matter.

    Finally, to my anonymous friend. It is, indeed, true that I’m in the HC. But if I was to write editorials that apply only to my situation, I would suggest that the rest of the student body would find them a bit dull and monotonous. If you’d like to read about people complaining about dirty parking garages and smokey stairways, this may not be the publication for you.

    I understand that this article may have painted the picture that I don’t like our university. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, there’s nowhere else I’d rather be. That doesn’t mean that I’m so blinded by school spirit to believe that our institution is perfect. There are things that need to be refined, redone. And as long as I’m here as editor of this publication, I’ll continue to publish my thoughts. Here’s hoping that you will continue to respond.

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.

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Giving thanks to a splendid university