October 21, 2019

Parking is not an issue for Delegates Agenda

Campus parking. I’m afraid that by writing on this issue I may induce a riot, but it’s a risk I’m willing to take. The parking issues at Webster University are new to me. I lived on campus without a car for the past two years. Over the summer, I bought my first car and brought it here.

Though I still live on campus, parking is even an issue for me. It was slightly disappointing to find out that parking lot M outside my dorm, East Hall, was reserved for the WVA residents. I have to park my car in the garage, which is difficult to get to with all the construction going on.

It seems to me that, for residential parking, the biggest issue comes from parking where we know we don’t belong. East and West Hall residents feel entitled to be close to their dorms, so they park in the WVA lots. This forces the WVA out, who have to find another lot to park in. This forces the commuter students out, who have to find a spot in the garage. The lack of spots in the garage then force the East and West residents to park in, you guessed it, the WVA lots.

This cycle of misplacement could be fixed if residents followed one simple rule — park in your own area! [pullquote]This cycle of misplacement could be fixed if residents followed one simple rule — park in your own area! [/pullquote] Don’t take off your tags to snatch a visitor spot, or park right outside an apartment only to walk across the lot to your hall. If you don’t want the frustration of searching for a spot in your designated lot, don’t force the same headache on your fellow residents.

Perhaps the students presenting at the Delegate’s Agenda can come up with a better idea to fix parking. When the Student Government Association began looking around for top campus issues to present to the administration, I wasn’t surprised that parking was brought up. It’s a complaint heard on a daily basis around Webster, given as an excuse for a bad mood or showing up late to class.

Surprisingly, SGA and student leaders on campus chose parking as an issue to present to President Elizabeth Stroble and the administration.

Parking is certainly not a new problem. If students have been complaining for years, why did they decide to present on the subject now? Maybe it was just time. Maybe they didn’t have any better problems to solve.

The Delegate’s Agenda has always been focused on bringing about change. Since I’ve been at Webster, real problems have been solved when students and the administration get together. Delegate’s Agenda is the reason why we have campus Wi-Fi. It’s the reason double majors are shown on diplomas and recycling is implemented across campus.

The Delegate’s Agenda is one of the best student-led programs at Webster. It allows for progress and change, the kind of change students ask for. It has produced results that make a real difference, like saving student money by allowing them to rent textbooks. It gives students leadership experience, a chance to work on presentation and research skills. And it gives the president of the university and other higher-ups a chance to interact with students and show them support.

Parking sucks at any university with commuter students. There are lots of cars coming and going throughout the day. People don’t park where they’re supposed to. Prospective students, parents and local business people are visiting on a daily basis. The inhabitants of a university fluctuate from hour to hour, and that is why parking at Webster is so difficult.

I wonder how presenters at the Delegate’s Agenda are going to propose that President Stroble fix parking. That’s the point of Delegate’s Agenda — it’s not a place for students to complain, but instead to propose solutions.

If Webster students want to be taken seriously, they should stop whining about parking. There are spots available. Shouldn’t that be enough? Why waste an opportunity to improve our university by focusing on a petty problem to which there is no valid answer?

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