Many commute to work and school regularly. In fact, approximately 39 percent of Stevenson students are commuters. Commuting definitely has its benefits, but after commuting for the past three years, I have realized that there are some issues with being a commuter.
Personally, I have felt excluded from and unwelcome at my own school. I’ve broken down because commuting seems to attract unfavorable opinions. But I soon realized that commuting does not have to be a negative experience.
Stevenson provides many resources for commuters and has recently begun developing plans to make commuters feel included in university activities. For those who brave the highways and metro schedules or who are thinking about changing their housing status, take note of a couple of resources that may improve your experience.
Commuter Student Association
According to the university’s website, the Commuter Student Association (CSA) “represents the interests and needs of the commuting students.” The organization is open to both commuters and residents. CSA aims to bring the student population together through social hours and sponsored Zumba classes, as well as other planned events.
The Commuter Lounge
Located on the second floor of the Caves Sports & Wellness Center, this area is a safe haven for commuters who may need a minute to relax, catch up on homework, watch television or enjoy lunch.
Stevenson offers many clubs, organizations, programs, jobs and leagues for students to get involved. Being involved in any kind of extracurricular activity is a great way to meet new people while getting involved in Stevenson’s culture.
As commuter students, we have access to most of the on-campus resources that resident students do. While we may feel pitied, unwelcome and marginalized, it is important to keep in mind that we must make an effort in order to get the “college experience” that many think we lack. Because Stevenson does not offer an abundance of resources for commuters, I recommend that this population of students voice their opinions and hopes.
The potential Stevenson has to reach commuters is continually developing. As Stevenson University grows and becomes more diverse in its offerings, I applaud the administration and staff for becoming more aware of the hardships commuters face.