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Stubborn Students Battle On

November 16, 2009

Having been a student at the University of Warwick for nearly three years now, I am not foolish enough to believe that pastoral care is number one on the university’s list of priorities. It has been noted by students and parents alike that the care offered to students throughout their time at the university, falls short of the standards set by other academic institutions. Needless to say, it is the academic achievements of the university that attracts students, and I speak from experience when I say that you must learn to love Warwick for what it is rather than resenting it for what it isn’t.

This is, however, becoming increasingly difficult to do, as the university continues to make significant changes to campus regulations, making student life ever more frustrating and tiresome. It is apparent that the number of freshers being accepted into the university has risen significantly, leading to over-crowding throughout the campus and even large queues to get both in and out of the library since the start of the year (imagine how much fun that’s going to be come exam time!). Students were also outraged to learn of the university’s new parking scheme which was presented to the public over the summer and has been in place since the start of this year. As part of the scheme, campus parking permits are no longer available to students and daily parking charges of £1.50 for 4 hours and £3.00 for the entire day, have been implemented. In order to pay for parking you must have the correct amount of money as the machines are not able to give change. Yet another way for the university to steal those extra pennies!!!

Permits are still available to staff members and there are now several car parks designated to these permit holders. Not only has this meant a massive increase in the amount of money that students are expected to pay for parking annually, it has also made parking on campus increasingly difficult, as the car parks appear to be filling up earlier every day. Many of the staff car parks, however, remain empty as staff members choose to fill the spaces that are left for students.

Despite constant complaints and protests by both the students and the Student’s Union, the university have failed to really address the issue, leaving students feeling angry, frustrated and ignored. In response to articles written in the student newspaper, The Boar as well as numerous complaints from the student body, the university have claimed that they are working towards a solution. So far this seems to involve nothing more than providing ‘five extra buses to the morning peak service as well as one extra bus to the evening peak service’. Despite recent plans to launch a car share scheme for students in early September, this proposal yet to be implemented. Indeed the only information available to students about this scheme is incredibly vague, ‘Coming soon: Student Car Sharing’

I know that I am not alone in expressing my feelings of exasperation and disappointment at the university’s lack of appreciation for the incredibly difficult situation many students now find themselves in. Having paid for my car insurance a month before the university published their new scheme, I was unable to afford a bus permit and am now forced to pay for parking whenever I need to go to campus. Luckily I have flatmates who are willing to share lifts! Others are not so lucky.

Although it may seem as though the subject of the Warwick car parks has been exhausted, it is my opinion that we must not let the issue die. It is essential that we continue to make clear to the university our complaints and suggestions until a compromise can be reached.

A copy of the university’s parking policy can be found here;

http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/insite/transtrav

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