SGA implements new parking arrangements on campus
The new parking policy brings about a simplification of the school parking system that carries both pros and cons for faculty, staff, and students at Minot State.
The student-led changes to parking were brought about by the Student Government Association. Student Body President Aaron Richard was instrumental in making this conceptualization a reality on campus.
"The idea to change the parking structure came about during the 2015-2016 academic year," Richard said. "The Student Government Association and Residence Hall Association both supported the idea of simplifying the parking system to allow students and employees to park anywhere on campus in their designated lots."
To provide equal opportunity for parking for everyone on campus, all lots were marked either student or employee, instead of by residence hall, work area, or unreserved. This equal-opportunity parking also includes the new lot, west of the Gordon B. Olson Library, which is open to students and employees alike.
The former parking issues on campus inspired the change to parking due to many students receiving infractions over lot confusion.
"The previous parking system only allowed students and university employees to park in their assigned lot, which was difficult for people who had classes across campus in the winter. Now, parking pass holder can park in whichever lot is most convenient for them," Richard stated.
However, by designating student and employee lots, some prime unreserved parking sports that allowed for students to have parking close to buildings, like Swain and the Beaver Dam, are now reserved for faculty and staff.
Shyla Carr, a junior biology major from Spokane, Wash., is an off-campus student who part in the lot most convenient for her before, but she no longer has access to that parking space.
"It is unfortunate that all the old unreserved spots went to faculty and staff; it should have stayed open on a first-come, first-serve basis," Carr stated of the change.
Overall, however, her remarks regarding the new parking system were positive despite the loss of her preferred parking.
"I like this year's structure better because it's less confusing. In the past, I really had no idea where I could park with my pass," Carr said.
According to Richard, the new passes are a flat rate of $65 for everyone. This is opposed to the previous years when on-campus students paid $65 for their permits and off-campus students paid $55.
"My hope is that this new system helps to reduce the number of parking violations that are issued on campus due to the greater accessibility for the users of MSU parking," Richard expressed.
"I was very happy to support the new parking policy because it was completely student-initiated, and I am happy to stand by what the stutdents want," Harmon said of the project.