It’s 10:50 a.m. You pull into Sierra Nevada College’s campus from your off campus apartment, and you’re feeling right on time for your 11 o’clock class. Your search for a parking spot begins. There are several visitor spots unoccupied, but that’ll be a ticket. There are several UC Davis spots unoccupied, but that’ll be a ticket. The SNC van spots are open, but again, that’ll be a ticket. You’d park on the street, but you know you’ll be fined for that too. You lap the lots a few more times in search of an empty spot, and with no luck, the clock continues to tick as you ask yourself why you paid for a parking pass in the first place. Frustrated, you park at the LifePoint Church across the highway on the corner of country club and route 28, and while waiting for traffic to cross the street on foot, you now realize that your five minutes late to class, and the start to your day has now gone to hell.
Sound like a similar experience to one of your own at SNC? You’re not alone. Several students on campus are continuing to express their frustrations with parking on campus, months after the new parking regulations have been implemented. The most frustrating issue for many: not enough parking spaces to go around.
“I have to pay to park in a parking lot where there are more students with passes than spots, so even if I have a parking pass, half the time I can’t even park,” said Junior Travis Specht.
Security officer Justin Hubbart can be found monitoring SNC lots Monday through Thursday.
“On average, I write about five tickets a day,” said Hubbart, “the good thing is that the majority of the students I write the tickets for have parking passes displayed in their vehicles, they’re just parking in areas like the dirt to the side of the lots, the streets, or the white lined parking spaces that are illegal to park in.”
Senior Megan Williamson feels that parking is now an issue of monitoring students who simply aren’t parking legally.
“Cars are parked on Country Club, just alongside the campus driveways, which makes it really hard to see cars coming and going. I have almost been hit several
times trying to pull out of campus,” said Williamson.
Hubbart points students to park at the LifePoint Church if they ever need additional parking. Forty spaces are available on the upper and lower levels to any students with an SNC parking pass.
“When students approach me upset after having been written a ticket, or if there is a lack of spaces on campus, I direct them to the church to park. Generally students are very compliable,” said Hubbart.
Certain times of the day are more convenient than others for finding parking, however.
“Usually just mid-morning is when I have a hard time finding a spot,” said Senior Macie Wightman, “I’ve never had trouble parking for a night class or an early morning class though.”
Sophomore Rachael Blum shares similar thoughts about timing of day and finding parking.
“Arriving after 10 a.m. classes means no parking in any of the lots,” said Blum. “Luckily, writing a note explaining the lack of spots will help avoid a ticket once or twice, but crossing the highway to park at the church is simply an inconvenience and is unrealistic, at that point people will just park on the sides of streets. One hundred bucks for a pass is cheap, yes, but we should be guaranteed a spot, that’s the problem.”
If students feel they are undeserving of a parking ticket issued, they have options.
“A parking grievance hearing committee has been established consisting of myself, faculty member Dr. Dan O’Bryan and Student Government Director of Public Relations Samantha Marquardt,” said Dean of Students Will Hoida in an email sent to undergraduates and staff. “The purpose of this committee is to review parking grievances submitted by SNC students, faculty, and staff, and decide if a reversal of action should be taken.”