OPINION: The Costly Convenience Issue



Lot 35 between the Nursing Building and Performing Arts Center.

Jacob Simonek, Staff Reporter

Commuting is one of the most common ways to save money while going to college. I commuted from my home 15 minutes ago, but I know friends that drive an hour to get to their classes. So, when we pay $60 for a little sticker to say that we may park on certain spots on the campus that we pay thousands of dollars to go, we expect that $60 to go towards parking upkeep, security, and the general convenience of having a parking place close and quick to our designated building.  

A&M-Commerce doesn’t think that’s enough because we have car thieves, potholes, and they closed off the parking lot Lot 35 in front of the new Nursing Building (which is also the science building, the PAC and partly for the Morris Rec Center) from the students, causing many commuters to park by the Rayburn Student Center or on the side of the street to get to their thousand dollar classes, and yet they want us to be paying $80 next semester? For less spots and the same security that everyone (but the residence halls) don’t know we have? 

For many faculty members at the last town hall meeting, this is nothing but “a convenience issue” and another reason to “exercise”, something funny to laugh about.

We have all seen the parking lot in between the new Nursing Building and the Science Building. It’s the closest one to both of them, used by students with classes in the Preforming Arts Center. It’s a very convenient lot as evident by the number of cars parked there in the past. With the addition of the Nursing Building finally opening up, our college now sees that lot as too convenient for the students paying for it. They decided that it’s better for Faculty/Staff only. This may be a small and not relevant issue for some students but many students think otherwise. 

Let’s not forget about the $20 increase we faced at the beginning of last semester and the second one we’ll face at the start of the upcoming fall semester. Within a year, they would have doubled the price of parking while closing off a entire lot to the students paying it. This is not me saying I won’t pay for it, because while a 200% increase seems large, it really isn’t. My problem with this increase is the lack of communication, the lack of honesty this campus has with their students. 

One email, one singular email to inform students of what to expect come next year when their passes expire. We didn’t get that. What we got was information given to us by word of mouth and directly asking. 

If this wasn’t shown to us and thus wrote about. You wouldn’t have known until it was too late, what if there’s other more pressing issues at hand? Would they also assume we don’t need to know until we can’t affect it? 

I do not think ill of our campus, I do not think they would hide the ugly from us and while the lot closing and the permit increase aren’t as ugly as they are merely a “convenience issue”, it is however still something worth informing students. It could be the stepping stones to school calling kicking students out of dorms a “convenience problem”, or for example, denying people their financial aid. 

But they wouldn’t wait till the students are screwed to alert them of that? 

Oh wait.