UPD changes game day parking

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UPD changes game day parking

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Liam Morrison was heading home with a backseat full of groceries whenever he realized he made a grave mistake by abandoning his parking spot outside the apartment complex on campus—it was game night.
Game night meant the parking lots that usually belonged to residential students were being used for ULM football fans with special events parking tags.
Morrison was not going to be able to find somewhere to park in the lot by his home. Instead, he drove around campus for an hour and a half as his groceries slowly unthawed in the backseat before finding a new parking spot.
“A lot of students live here and need the parking lot near their home,” said Morrison, a junior psychology major.
However, Morrison’s story is not unique. Anyone who lives or has lived in the on-campus apartment complex has a similar story. Carmen Latiolais, a senior nursing major, once had to park outside Stubbs Hall during a game when she lived in Bayou Village Apartments.
During the Grambling vs. ULM game a few weeks ago, UPD allowed RVs to park in the residential lot south of Masur Hall. This angered many students.
In fact, Nelle Jenkins was so fed up with the state of game day parking that she posted about it in Student to Student at ULM, a Facebook group consisting of current and former ULM students.
The post curated such a stir among residential students that the director of the University Police Department, Tom Torregrossa, reached out to Jenkins in an email.
“Your complaint was discussed, and it is understood that students have first rights to parking in their lots,” Torregrossa said. “We will correct this immediately.”
Last Friday during the South Alabama vs. ULM game, Jenkins’ and many other students’ dreams came true as new game day parking was enforced by UPD as promised. RV parking was moved to Brown Stadium and residential students were allowed to stay in their own lots.
Latiolais feels encouraged by the changes UPD made to game day parking. Instead of students’ opinions being pushed to the side, social media allowed for ULM’s student body to be heard.
“I think that students feel like they aren’t heard, especially when it comes to issues with parking or something similar,” Latiolais said. “Knowing that we were finally heard and a change was made is great.”