You know what gets on my nerves? People
who think they have the solution to this school’s parking problem. They think, as this woman posted on the professor’s blog
, that the solution is to get here early.
Brilliant! That works if, say, your first class is at 9:30 a.m. or maybe even 11 a.m. If you think you can roll in at 9:20 for that first class, well, it obviously doesn’t work that way. And that can be frustrating but that's the way it goes. You need to be here before 8 a.m. Too bad. But that’s not what I’m complaining about and I don’t think that’s what most students get upset about.
(I’m not claiming to have the solution to the parking problem either. I’m just pointing out the absurdity of denying that parking would be less of a problem because people don’t get here early enough.)
The problem, see, is twofold:
First, law school is not an 8-5 job. People spend upwards of 10-15 (or more!) hours a day on campus. (Especially 1Ls, who have been known to go several weeks in a row spending inordinate amounts of time doing work for law school) It’s not unreasonable to want to leave for a few hours when you have a large gap in your schedule. But if your first class is over at 11 and your next class isn’t until 4:30, you’re screwed. You can’t go anywhere and come back if you want to park nearby. While most 3Ls and some 2Ls with early registration times have control over their schedules, that still leaves about half the students with no control over when they can schedule classes. So these people are within their rights to be upset at the parking problem.
Second, a large percentage of students here (2Ls and 3Ls, at least) have other things going on besides classes. For instance, many of us have jobs! Yes, it’s true! And that includes internships, clinics, volunteer activities, etc., (and many law students actually have lives outside of school and don’t want to be chained to the law school campus for nine hours a day and would rather come and go). And if we’re not lucky enough to be able to create a schedule that leaves us entire days without a single class, we have to go back and forth between jobs and school. That’s a huge problem. Last semester I had to leave my job – which was a 10-minute drive from campus – an hour before class so I could find a parking space or leave time for the shuttle if I couldn’t find somewhere. (and don’t get me started on the inefficiencies of the shuttle). I know someone who has no classes earlier than 2 p.m. on any day so she can work mornings most days. That’s great. It would be even better if she could work until 1:30, pull up to campus, and then show up on campus just in time for class.
So once again, I don’t have a grand solution to the problem. But at minimum, it makes sense to acknowledge that there’s a problem and getting here early is not necessarily a solution to the problem.