A commuter’s perspective: not much brighter on the other side
I waste at least six hours a week. That doesn’t include procrastinating by checking Facebook, two email accounts and Stumbling. Those six hours may not seem like much, but to a commuter, it’s time that could be spent sleeping, doing homework or hanging out with friends. When I decided to commute this year, I didn’t realize it was going to be a part time job. I thought commuting wouldn’t be as terrible as I’d imagined. I thought it would be no problem to drive only 45 minutes to school and that I would be on campus just as much before and having the same routine. I was very wrong.
Things I hadn’t factored into my decision included the two hours I would need in the morning to wake up and drive to school. Waking up for an 11 a.m. class was never terrible, until I started commuting this semester. Now, I have to wake up at 8:30 a.m. to get ready, endure traffic and find a parking spot on campus—which is a completely different story. The vicious cycle continues throughout the day when I have my night class, get home at 9:30 p.m. only to have hours of homework ahead of me. In reality, I should be going to bed earlier, because I have to get up early, but instead, I stay up later to do homework that I could have spent an hour doing while I was driving. This week I had a meeting and drove to campus only to find out it was canceled. If I had lived on campus, it wouldn’t have been so bad to walk back to my dorm and continue my night. Instead, I had wasted an hour and would have to waste another hour driving home. There are things I took for granted when I lived on campus, such as going back to my room to nap in between classes, staying in the library until late at night and being able to see my friends on a regular basis. Now, I find that I rarely see my friends and when I do, I’m exhausted and I have to go home and start my homework. I honestly have no idea how all my commuter friends have dealt with the drive the past three years of college and I am worn down from it after a month. Sometimes I wish I gave into the convenience fee to live on campus, but now I can say that I’ve seen both sides to being a resident and a commuter. Patrice Kubik is a senior journalism major from Stirling, N.J. She can be reached at Patrice.firstname.lastname@example.org.