Student parking woes easily remedied with permits, willingness to walk

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Parking on campus is and has been an issue, but it’s not because there isn’t enough parking.

   Students may think they have plenty of time to find a parking spot close to their classes, but when they finally arrive on campus they have to keep circling around the parking lot in hopes that a stall will open up. All that time they thought they had to find a parking spot and get to class on time has been wasted.

   “There’s more than ample parking on campus,” said Don Reid, director of campus security. “It’s just that if everybody wants to get the exact same parking lot then there won’t be enough. But if students are willing to park down here in the baseball parking lot and walk to the Udvar-Hazy (School of Business), they won’t have to search for a parking space any time during the day.” 

   Sherry Ruesch, executive director of campus services, said students have also been trying to drive from building to building to make it on time for their classes.

   “The best advice I can give them is to not move between classes unless you have a big break,” Ruesch said. “The more students we have, the more impossible it is to move your car from north campus to south campus. You just need to park in the middle or park by your last class and walk to your first.”

   While it may not be convenient, there are a lot of parking spots available by the baseball fields, Burns Arena, and in many of the overflows around campus, Reid said.

   However, students are not permitted to park in the faculty or visitor parking, which is distinguished by yellow lines. Students who park in those spots will receive a citation by the campus police.

   Reid said if students do get citations, they shouldn’t ignore them. They will go on their record and they don’t go away. If the citation is not paid at the campus security building by the end of the semester, then it goes to a delinquent fine list. Until the citation and late fees are paid, the student’s transcript will be frozen. The best way to prevent getting a citation would be to get a parking permit.

   “It’s very easy to never get a citation at Dixie College,” Reid said.

   Reid said all students have to do is get a parking permit and never park in anything that is marked yellow or reserved for emergencies.

   “If [students] do that, they will never get a ticket,” Reid said.

   Be sure to get parking permits during the first three weeks of school because after that campus police will start issuing citations.

   “We never write a student a ticket just for no parking permit,” Reid said. “We give them three weeks to get that. After the third week, we start writing (citations for) anybody that doesn’t have a parking permit, but we give them that three-week grace period just for no permit.”

   However, if a student parks in a faculty/staff reserved zone without a permit, then the student will be cited for both offenses, Reid said. 

   A table will be set up in the cashier’s office in the Jeffrey R. Holland Centennial Commons and at the Bookstore in the Gardner Student Center where permits can be purchased for $20. 

   Also, permits will be available for purchase at the campus security office, west of Centennial Commons, all year.