Thursday, March 5, 2015

Record enrollment affects university, students

By Quixem Ramirez

SAN MARCOS- Texas State set an enrollment record for a 17th consecutive year, placing them fourth in the state behind Texas, Texas A&M and Houston.

The trickle-down effect of 36,790 students, up from 3.5 percent last year, is reflected in parking.

As the campus is stretched to its physical limits, finding a parking spot is few and far between.

“I guess parking has affected me the most since it’s bad,” said Cedrick Cradle, music studies sophomore. “There’s nowhere to park ever. Even in the off hours parking gets really bad, people take them up. Now that commuters are allowed to buy green passes that just limits the on campus parking. Then construction doesn’t help as well.”

442 spots were lost from the Speck parking lot to build a new residence hall in 2014. Parking Services’ deficit, meanwhile, continues to increase.

Devante Young, criminal justice senior, said the solution to parking is contingent on expansion.

“They should expand parking in different areas outside of San Marcos and create ‘park and rides’ which will condense the traffic, make finding parking more convenient and traveling a lot safer,” Young said.

San Marcos is the fastest growing city in the country. By extension, that leaves Texas State with the issue of limited parking spaces.

"The town of San Marcos just feels like its shrinking,” said Alexandria Woodward, education major. “Traffic is getting worse, places are getting more packed and even campus feels crowded.”

For Duncan Lott, psychology sophomore, consistent growth is acceptable if the university is prepared to handle it.

"As long as they build themselves to be well adjusted for that kind of growth,” Lott said. “If they are not prepared for that growth, I think they should slow it down. I don’t think they are well adjusted right now. I think in a few years we’ll be caught up, work through some kinks and we’ll be prepared."

Texas State received $10 million worth of grants in September as a result of the growing enrollment.

While parking continues to be a pressing issue, President Denise Trauth is spinning the enrollment in a different light.

"We take seriously our role in preparing our state's future leader and workforce,” Trauth said. “This steady growth tells us that students and their parents feel the same way.”

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