Commuters Prepare!

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Hello everyone, 

I'm looking at my calendar, and there are about two weeks left of August.  That means the fall semester is coming up (way too) fast. 

For new commuter students, there's a lot of things you have to expect on the first few weeks of classes:

1)  GET YOUR PARKING PERMIT!   This is the most important thing to get before first day of classes!  The permit is a decal that states that you are a commuter student and you have the authority to park in most parking lots.  If you do not have the permit on the first day, you will get a UML Police Parking Ticket, or what the commuters call the infamous "Orange Envelope."  So please get one as soon as possible!  To order a permit online, please go to this website:  parking.uml.edu

2)   The parking lots in UMass-Lowell will be filled quickly and traffic will be a "I-93 highway crawl."  This is probably due to students trying to find the large parking lots, and other students still moving into their dorms.  From what I heard from other students, the parking lot right next to Sheehy Hall was removed and turned into a green spot (and I still don't know why).  So traffic will be tighter than usual and parking spots will be harder to find.  I would definitely leave your house earlier than planned.  Try to plan out your route in advance by driving to UML before move-in day so you can get accustomed to where to go, so the first day vehicle jam won't be a major surprise to you. 

3)   Get your vehicles checked by your mechanic before you start driving to school everyday.  It is a good idea to get your brakes fixed, check your engine light, tires, and other car stuff.  This step is basically a time to prevent any future breakdowns during the school semester.  Trust me, you don't want to miss classes because your car fails to start in the morning!  When the semester moves on into October, it is good to think about winterizing your car, because slippery roads are dangerous.

4)  Talking about breakdowns and bad weather, sometimes you may get stranded in UML.  It's a good idea to have extra clothing in the car, some toothpaste, a toothbrush, and other essentials that will help you through the night.  Please don't sleep in the car with the engine on... there will be carbon monoxide build up and that's deadly!  If you know a friend that has a dorm, sleep over there instead.  Trust me, especially in the winter, the car freezes up.

5)  Know the gas stations around the area.  Fortunately, UML South has a gas station right next to it.  The prices there are fairly inexpensive compared to others in the area.  But it's a good idea to fill up before you leave your house.  I created a link from Google Maps that shows all the gas stations around Lowell:  Google Maps: Gas Stations in Lowell

6)  Here's a tip about parking again:  Please don't create your own parking space.  This is the reason why commuters get ticked off.  Some people tend to park in places that aren't considered as spaces at all, or some are stupid enough to park on a handicap space when they aren't handicapped!  Please remember this:  as long as you park in an area that says that you are allowed to park there, and your vehicle is between the white solid lines, you will be fine!

Well those are the basic points for the first few weeks of classes.  There are probably other points that I did not go over, but as soon as I think of others, I'll re-edit this blog. 

Please ask questions if you are confused about anything about the commuter life.  I will be a senior this fall and I think I know my way around as a commuter :-)

If you do have questions, you can email me: christian_tiongson@student.uml.edu

- Christian
 



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This page contains a single entry by Tiongson, Christian J published on August 16, 2008 8:31 AM.

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