On-campus residents can’t understand commuter’s pain

Catherineosburn and Catherineosburn

Commuter students do have the right to complain. Just because we are not living on campus does not mean we cannot voice our opinions. So here is ‘another commuter complaint’ about David Houser’s recent article, “Commuters complain too much.”

First off, let’s define what a commuter is. In your article you assume a commuter is someone who opted out of living on campus to live in a house in Bowling Green; students who live in off-campus housing. The Bowling Green Off-Campus Student Services define commuters as “students who live off-campus with family members, both within the Bowling Green city limits as well as students who live outside of BG.”

These are not students who signed leases to live with friends. Many commuters chose to live at home with their families due to money reasons, family issues or an array of other reasons you might not have considered.

With that definition out of the way, you talk about how the lots around Offenhauer and Mac are closing to “update campus living and attract new students.” It’s fantastic they want to improve the campus, but look at it from a commuter’s point of view. They are tearing down something we use to put up, something that has no direct impact on us. We will not be living in these new dorms, so it is really not improving much for us.

And do you really want to know what the big deal with having to walk an extra couple minutes is? Since the weather is getting nice it might not be as clear, but in the winter, walking campus is brutal. Trekking through the snow, rain and wind is not at all a fun task, especially after a long day.

Imagine getting up to go to class at 6:45 because you have to leave your house at 7:30 to get to your 8:30 class. Then you have a long day of classes until 5:15, but no — you cannot just go to the dorm and relax, you have to carry all your books across campus, while facing the elements to get to your car. Upon arriving to your car, you get to drive through rush hour traffic, and then, finally home, you can start your homework.

So no, we commuters are not lazy, we just have to go through a little more to get to class. We can’t just roll out of bed and go, so yes, it is a little bit of a burden.

Yes commuter students elected not to live on campus, but that does not mean we should park on the outskirts of campus. On-campus students pay more to the University because they use more; you are paying room, board and food, because you are costing them money to live here!

On-campus students are paying room fees to live in the rooms; this should have nothing to do with parking! We don’t give the University any money for living because we are not using those services. Since when does this have to do with where we park our cars? Faculty members do not pay money to the university yet their spots are right up front, so according to your logic they should be out in nowhere; you get what you pay for right? Commuters should have closer spots because we actually go to our cars more than once a week.

There is also a safety issue with commuters parking far. If a class goes until 9, we have to walk to our cars, usually alone, in the dark. Yes better lighting will help, but it can still be scary to some. As a young female, I would not feel safe even with better lighting; I would not be able to defend myself if something happens.

So the commuters who actually commute and do not just live in off-campus housing, this is something to complain about. Yes, we know nothing will be changing. The lots will be moved, but we can voice our opinion on the issue.

Catherine is a junior majoring in Early Childhood Education. Respond to her at [email protected]