After surviving freshman year, a full year without being allowed to have a vehicle on campus, I have become extremely disappointed with the administration’s decision to implement a freshmen no-car rule.
At first, the university’s policy did not seem to faze me because I knew that the entire freshman class would be in the same boat. I had my mind on other things – making new friends, gaining a sense of freedom, and wondering what living on campus would be like.
After two months, I realized that not having a vehicle on campus presented numerous problems for me. As a Florida resident who lives only four-and-a-half hours away, it became difficult for me to take public transportation. Riding the train or bus instantly added an extra two hours onto my trip. Another option was to take an overpriced 30-minute flight back home to Tampa – no thanks.
Miami is a great city, but without a car, I found myself stuck eating at the same few restaurants and frequently going to the same places around campus. Dining Dollars and Cane Express became my prized possession when I wasn’t in the mood for the one and only delectable Chartwells.
If the shuttles weren’t available at my convenience, I would end up walking to Sunset Place in the heat. It’s times like these when I mumbled to myself, “If only I had my car…”
For these reasons, not having a car can make a freshmen feel isolated from the city of Miami. If I had the power to change this policy, I would allow the freshmen to have their cars during only the second semester.
In my opinion, I do not think a freshman should have one during the whole school year, so they will adjust to their community. This idea is reasonable because it still allows students to spend more time on campus, which will help them adjust and most likely force them to meet new people.
In order to grow and learn, students should not only be familiar with the community within their college, but the city they are living in as well.