Chris Geiger, the Director of Student Involvement, said, “Roughly one third of our students live on campus, one third are commuters and one third are resi-muters, or students that live in the surrounding area.”
The average college student faces many obstacles during their college career. These obstacles range from managing finances to getting the right classes for the next semester, while trying to juggle both academic life and working part-time or full-time jobs. The commuter student faces these same obstacles, including travel time, cost of gas and parking.
“If you don’t live in the area, there aren’t many things for you to do while you are waiting around for your next class,” UWG commuter and full-time student, Felipe Velez said.
As the population of commuter students grows, UWG continues to look for ways to make the college commute and experience easier. Part of the difficulty is that many commuter students are not aware of the different on-campus resources offered to them.
A commuter student lounge was formerly located on the third floor of the UCC in room 311. The lounge featured couches, a refrigerator, a microwave, games, computers, a printer and more. To accommodate for the growth of the commuter student population, UWG has made a move to open a new lounge. The “Wolves Den” is an in-progress student lounge specifically designed for the needs of commuter students.
“The lounge will have brand new furniture, televisions, computers, a refrigerator and microwave, and resources to assist and connect our commuter students,” said Geiger.
The “Wolves Den” will be located in Strozier Hall and will offer a “ride board,” hosted by the Commuter Student Association, where students can meet other commuters who are interested in carpooling. The Commuter Student Association is also a way for commuter students to become involved. The organization offers benefits and leadership opportunities to those interested in membership. Commuter students seeking to get involved can find out more information by liking the UWG Commuter Student Association on Facebook.
The commuter student experience does not have to be a bad one. Along with the lounge, commuters have access to the Ingram library, commuter study lounge located on the third floor of the UCC and various computer and learning labs around campus. Students can also create meal plans that work in places like the UCC, TLC and the Z-6. Other resources that exist to aid commuter students are a Commuter Student Task Force, hosted by Geiger, as a way to identify their programming needs and Commuter Services, which is located on the third floor in Row Hall.