Traveling back in my memory of freshman year, I recall learning about all the little perks Western had to offer. We had a fantastic bus system, free admission to any sports game and a Rec center with more options for fitness than imaginable. But one perk that really struck my mom and I was the affordable parking pass of $50 a semester.
Coming from a high school that charged a minimum of $400 a year for a parking pass, sometimes not even on campus, we were pumped. Freshman year parking went very smoothly. There were always enough spots within a reasonable distance to our dorm, and the parking lot was so well lit, even if I had to park far away during the evening, I was never too scared to walk to my building. Which brings me to present day, sophomore year.
I am living in the Corbin side of the Corbin Olson dorms. I received my car on campus after Labor Day weekend, so a little later than most of campus, I would assume. But, to my surprise, I was able to get a parking pass with no problems! The first few days went well, with no problems with parking. My fourth day on campus, having parked in the faculty lane of the upper Corbin parking lot, I was ticketed. Yes, I recognize that if I had paid better attention to the signs, or talked to someone about why I was getting so many tickets, I could have avoided them. But, I eventually caught on to the boundaries after visiting Mowbray Hall for some direction. But, soon, I found myself with a different, less-expensive problem. I always check upper Corbin lot first. I take a lap, and sometimes a second or third if it was cold and rainy, I’d make sure there are no spots available. Then I go to lower Corbin lot. I will circle this one multiple times as well. It is crazy how many times even this lot has reaches its full capacity. This takes me back to upper Corbin lot, and the lower Olson lot. I will be completely honest, the first three times all lots have been full, I will pay the meters, and watch out my window until a spot opens up. But, the fourth time I found myself digging in my wallet for quarters hourly, I drove back to Mowbray Hall. I did not intend for my predicament to come off as a complaint, but merely a question of what to do if this happens. The kind lady behind the desk, who I could tell sympathized with my parking problem, took her pen to point to the Q lot across from Adams, which is almost parallel to Simpkins and Sherman.
This concerns me. It concerns me that when I find all parking lots full, which is usually during later hours of the day, when everyone is in for the night, I will have to walk by myself down the street and across Adams, to get to the building, not including the walk then to my personal dorm. This short walk seems like no big deal, and there are a few blue lights placed at a calculated distance from each other. For obvious safety reasons, I never chose to park in the Q lot. Besides not being confident in my ability to run fast enough to a blue light if need be, I felt even more uncomfortable with the recent things that have happened off and around campus. I feel they should only hand out the amount of parking passes as there are spots. This would solve the issue of unnecessary parking tickets and avoid more instances of putting individuals in situations where they feel unsafe.