Banning First-Years’ Cars Won’t Solve Parking

If a vote were to be taken on whether or not California Lutheran University students, faculty and staff found parking to be an issue, undoubtedly almost everyone would vote yes; it is an issue. However, proposing that first-years not have cars on campus is not the solution.

Finding parking on campus is an issue for many commuters, but should we really take this issue out on first-year students?

It often seems as if all commuters arrive on campus around the same time, which could be something that makes the issue of parking seem bigger than it might be.

When asked about her opinion on the issue of parking, junior Britta Olsen said, “I have not had an issue, but I’ve heard a lot of other people having issues. You know, if you don’t have class starting first thing in the morning, it’s near impossible to find parking afterwards.”

Parking does not seem to be much of a problem if you arrive to campus with some time to spare before class.

Morgan Close, a first-year student, said, “I usually park in G1, which is the main parking. If you get there at a certain time, like around lunch or before 9 o’clock, then your parking is fine. If I get here at 10 then I have to go to the overflow parking.”

We are all here for the same thing: education. Cars have become such a basic necessity in our lives that it would be ridiculous to ban first-years from having cars on campus.

“Yeah, I think if you’re a commuter, you absolutely have the right to have a car on campus; I don’t think a junior or senior commuter should have priority over a freshman commuter,” Olsen said. “They’re both doing the same thing and both driving to school.”

Let’s say you don’t have back-to-back classes and need to get to work or run errands – what would you do then? The concept of banning first-year cars would  be an attempt to solve the issue of parking, but only for others. First-years would be stuck with the difficulty of having to find their own transportation.

“I think freshmen should be able to park on campus, because I mean there’s people who can’t live in dorms, there’s people who can’t afford to live in dorms, and people who would rather just commute. There’s different aspects of that, which kind of forces people to kind of have to commute,” first-year Celeste Adler said.

Some may argue that we should not allow first-year cars on campus and should encourage them to utilize public transportation options, such as the new pilot program launched by the Ventura County Transportation Commission. Although this is a good alternative, many students do not have the luxury of having back-to-back classes.

“I think a lot of the ease of having your own car is if you have three hours in between two classes and you want to leave, and you don’t want to wait on a shuttle,” Olsen said.

We cannot be fully aware of other activities going on in students’ personal lives, which is why I believe banning first-years from having cars on campus is the wrong way to go about solving the parking issue.

Alejandra Gonzalez
Reporter