Thursday, February 27, 2014

Student enrollment causes need for transportation and construction enhancements

By: Christian Gusman
Texas State Student

SAN MARCOS--The increase in student enrollment has affected students in many ways throughout the year, especially in transportation and construction.

This semester marks the 16th consecutive year Texas State has set a new record for total enrollment, according to a university press release.

The increase has caused the university to make changes in student housing, parking and other student resources.

Some students who live off-campus said they’ve had problems with the bus system throughout the semester.

“I take the bus loop,” said sophomore Casey Robinson. “The buses are very crowded. There aren’t enough (buses) that go around so I’m late for class almost all the time even if I go out to the bus stop early, since I’m one of the last bus stops at the Heights II.”

It has been suggested by some students that the university should increase the number of buses that go around for the amount of people who need to ride the bus to get to class.

Many students said it would also be a helpful accommodation if the university could increase parking or lower the cost of the permits.

Available for purchase are the Residence Hall Permits ($485/year) or the Perimeter Permits ($115/year), which can be obtained through Parking Services. Residence Hall permits are green, while Commuter/Perimeter permits are purple.

Some students with vehicles bought either a green, purple, or motorcycle permit to park at school in their specified colored zones.

“Parking. I feel like it’s always been bad but now it’s worse. I even have a commuter pass... and still it’s kind of impossible,” said junior Stephanie Shulz.

Problems with finding a parking spot have also come from the fact that more students this year has purchased the cheaper commuter pass. This left 500 to 600 residential parking spots unclaimed, and the commuter lots full, according to an article by the University Star.

Traffic problems are a common occurrence around the university and the city of San Marcos.

“It has to do with all the students coming in, but this is the fastest growing area in the country, so I think regardless of the school growing, there is going to be traffic and the construction’s making it worse,” said 22-year-old student Rebecca Swaim.

Construction happening around the school has also made parking, and getting around a difficult task. Streets are blocked off, and new buildings are being worked on every day.

Although parking and construction is a problem for many, most students approve of the university continuing to grow as long as the school has a plan on how they can improve and expand on their resources as well as the city of San Marcos.

“…It just needs to grow at a slower rate. It really depends on the city. The city should assimilate to the university’s growing population,” said sophomore Leah Perez.

While some students see the increased enrollment as a positive aspect, others aren’t so sure.

“I don’t know if they should allow more students to come or if they should just become more selective about their choices,” said sophomore Caroline Baxter.

As the university grows harder decisions by officials will be made to control the size of the student population.

“We’re growing so large that we have the opportunity to become a more successful, a more elite school by letting fewer students in, and I think they should take advantage of that instead of more construction, more growth, and letting the same standard of student in,” Baxter said.

The growth of the student enrollment is mostly seen as a positive aspect as long as the university can keep up.

Casey Robinson, female, sophomore,
Stephanie Shulz, 21, junior,
Rebecca Swaim, 22, female,
Caroline Baxter, sophomore student,
Leah Perez, 20, sophomore,
Isai Ramirez, PACE Peer Mentor, junior,

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