Does Parking Need to be so Stressful?

*Articles reflect the views of the author and or those quoted and do not necessarily represent the views of CCBC or the CCBC Connection.

Danielle Brouillette

If you have your license then you obviously know how to park. But why does it take so long for students who are commuting to campus to find a parking spot and what is the reason for the categorizing of spots?

As this new semester starts so does the task of waking up early to get to campus way before classes start to find a parking spot no matter where it is. You then must also make sure you get to class on time even if you find a spot in the farthest lot from your class.

At every CCBC campus they have signs that state who can park where and each parking space is colored either red or white. The red is for the faculty and staff and the white is for everyone else.

Something that may happen a lot is that people who come to campus everyday may not realize that guests rarely check online to see where they can park.

If a guest or visitor is just coming to look around and not for a specific event they may park in the wrong spot and could get some sort of penalty even though they might not be familiar with the parking rules. There is no clear indication of what the colored parking spots mean on the signs that say who can park where.

But something that does need to stay the same and something that should be added is having designated spots for people who are disabled and things like CCBC transit buses, MTA buses, electric car charging stations and spots for people who will only be gone for maybe an hour at the latest.

Mostly everyone that drives to one of the campuses is probably a student or a teacher. It is not likely there are multiple guests coming in and out of campus every single day.

Therefore, everyone should be able to park where there is an open space.

There have been times where the parking lots have been in a log jam because people are waiting for someone to pull out of a parking spot. Problems also occur when people are waiting in line as everyone tries to hunt down an empty spot, someone's leaving campus, or people are contemplating whether or not to turn left, right, or straight because there may be a spot opened that they can’t see.

Even if a student leaves super early to make sure they get to campus on time to find a parking spot and to get to class, they may still have trouble because there is a limited number of spots for students on each campus, though there are more students than professors.  And if a student is late because they can’t find a spot they could miss half of the class.

It also is hard for people to really notice a spot that is open because there are so many different types of cars on campus. A small car next to a really big truck is definitely misleading because you may think it’s an open spot so students often prepare to turn into it but as they do they realize that it’s not and then they have all of these people behind them getting angry because they made a mistake and now they have to fix it.

Getting rid of the designated parking spots should make it easier and less stressful for everyone. There hopefully won’t be as many close calls and accidents from people fighting for a parking space.

It just makes sense for everyone who is a student and/or faculty to be able to park where there is an opening but still have designated spots for those who have a disability, for MTA Bus drop offs and pickups, CCBC transit buses, people who won’t be on campus for longer than an hour, and campus police.

Having it like this will make it so much easier and safer for everyone. The reason why is because no one will have to look out for the red and white lines especially when they are rushing to get to class. And the guests will also not have to worry about getting a ticket especially if they will be more than an hour on campus.


  1. Kyle 7 October, 2018 at 17:17 Reply

    I’m a faculty member and I think you make some really valid points. I certainly like having a spot close, but we aren’t here for me. We are here for the students.
    Next time somebody asks, I’ll let them know we should make parking easier and eliminate faculty-reserved spaces.
    Thanks, Kyle

  2. Matt 14 October, 2018 at 10:14 Reply

    Parking can be a tremendous hassle, and seems to be exponentially worse on days when one is running late. Being fooled by an obscured empty spot, only to find a small car there is undoubtedly a reason a person may struggle with trust issues. Although, CCBC is leaps and bounds ahead of neighboring colleges, in terms of parking. I park in the exact same spot every visit to campus, regardless of time I arrive, and am thankful of the plentiful open spaces around. It may not be the closest spot, although if I were to drive around searching for the absolute closest spot I would waste much more time. On days I take my forms of alternate transportation, riding my motorcycle or bicycle, I am treated to prime motorcycle only parking or any number of bike racks located mere steps from building entrances. Michael, who attends Towson University, has whined over the truly unbearable parking situation on his campus. He states, “You have to buy a parking pass for each semester which is like three hundred bucks, and then can’t even find a spot ever. Also I’ve gotten more than one seventy-five dollar fine for parking in the wrong spot before. It truly is the worst” Thank you CCBC for the superb parking.

  3. Brandon Gayles 14 October, 2018 at 23:16 Reply

    This is an issue that I still face. There has been many times I have been late to class because I can`t find a parking spot. I use to even leave my house 10 mins early just to get a parking spot. With leaving the house early I still had to struggle to find a parking spot. While i understand that teachers need parking there parking intervene with student parking. My only issue with teacher parking is that there spaces are more conveniently spaced compared to the students. The walk up the hill to campus because I can`t find parking is not only time consuming it also tiring.

  4. Ashlei 8 November, 2018 at 14:30 Reply

    This is a great topic for discussion. I agree that parking should be on a first come first serve basis for faculty, staff and students with the exceptions mentioned above. Parking was always a challenge for me when visiting the campus both in the mornings and evenings. Transitioning to online learning has been one of the best decision I’ve made!

  5. Shivam Rajput 9 November, 2018 at 09:39 Reply

    Parking has been a major issue since I first started here at CBCC . I agree with your opinion of getting rid of Faculty parking designated spots, but i also disagree at a certain extent. The ratio to students versus teachers is very high and Teachers cannot be late to teach the students since they are the key to success and your grades. It is the students responsibility to come on time and lave early from there homes, and think about what time they need to leave and find parking. Time Management is a very crucial skill-set

  6. Mona Safari 18 November, 2018 at 11:20 Reply

    Thank you for bringing attention to the matter! I normally attend the Owings Mills campus and have no problem parking. However, I have had to visit the Essex campus a few times and it is stressful. Getting rid of faculty spots is a great idea. Sometimes no matter how early you leave, you can still end up late anyway. Parking should 100% be a first come first serve, especially if students are expected to pay for passes.

  7. Margaret Henschel 18 November, 2018 at 23:42 Reply

    I believe that simplifying the parking as you describe would reduce the stress involved with finding a parking space. However, I believe that extra time would still need to be factored in when planning your commute to school.

  8. Peggy 28 November, 2018 at 04:57 Reply

    I think parking is a significant problem across many colleges and universities. We always hear something about the parking situations at schools. Specifically relating to CCBC Essex Campus, there have been many times where I come in an hour an hour before class starts (my first class begins at 9:05am) just to find parking. It has reached the point of ridiculously. Sometimes, regardless of how early I get there, I will still be late to class. With all the traffic jam in the morning, students not knowing where to turn, waiting for people to pull out, and searching for red and white markers is an even further hassle. I think you are right; something that could alleviate the problem could be eliminating marked faculty spots. I think it’d be smarter to have a designated, specific lot just for faculty and professors and the rest, scattered throughout and everywhere else, just for students. As for guest/visitors- which honestly aren’t that many, a small lot for those cars wouldn’t be a bad idea. But the coloured markers are quite useless and a hassle to look for versus knowing an entire specified lot is for faculty and professors; who also most definitely deserve and require parking of their own, since they are the ones who then will be late to work and therefore late to teach us. Just my two cents, but nevertheless, a great topic to bring to light and discuss on.

  9. Asia F 9 December, 2018 at 11:28 Reply

    I definitely understand the frustration with parking. I am a commuter and there have been plenty of days where I thought I would be on time for class, but I ended up being late because of how long it took me to park. Honestly I think we need to create more lots or open up some of the faculty lots. Most days I see vacancies in the faculty parking lots, so I feel like CCBC should open those lots up to students.

  10. Ebony Erwin 9 December, 2018 at 17:10 Reply

    Hi Danielle,

    I completely agree with you regarding the parking spaces. When I go to the Owings Mills campus, this isn’t an issue because they have a parking garage. I’ve had my challenges with the Essex Campus, but isn’t that bad depending on which building you have to go to. I absolutely dread going to the Catonsville campus in the evening. There is very minimal parking for students and lots for faculty. It take forever to find a spot and then the walk to class takes forever. I’m not insinuating that faculty isn’t deserving of their own parking spots, however, I do feel that more student spaces are definitely needed.

  11. Melanie Goetzinger 8 May, 2019 at 22:52 Reply

    I agree with you completely. The parking situations is so tedious and seriously needs to be changed. When I am in a class all I hear is how the other students had to park in illegal spots or even just the curb because there were none. I think every spot should be white. It also makes me so angry because when you spend more then 20 minutes to find a parking spot while seeing so many employee spots open, its just so unfair. Some time I don’t even care and I park in the red spots, not caring it I get a ticker or not. Sometimes we have to park on the whole other side of campus and walk ten minutes. Sometimes that walk is painful when you have to carry so many things for a class and your hand are full. We really need to get this situation fixed

  12. Mackenzie Weinapple 11 May, 2019 at 19:29 Reply

    Hi Danielle,
    I completely agree with you!! Parking sucks at ccbc, I legit just got a 156 ticket the other day. I think everyone should be able to park wherever, and my one professor was telling me how even faculty doesn’t have enough spots so they will park in “student” spots. I definitely wish they made parking easier!

  13. Alaina Grove 10 July, 2019 at 14:12 Reply

    Parking is a problem within its own at CCBC. My first ever day of classes I accidentally parked in a teacher lot. The next day I realized that the parking lot for the building that I was supposed to be in, is actually nowhere near that building! I get to class about 30-45 minutes early just because I need to be able to find a parking spot. I attend classes on the Essex campus, and even though they are building more spots, The whole parking lot needs to be restructured in my opinion.

  14. Kennedey 12 July, 2019 at 13:55 Reply

    I felt like this is an issue that professors and other people with authority don’t take into consideration. There should be a better system for commuters that have to park on campus. Parking can cause me to be at least 10 minutes late to class when I showed up 15 minutes early. Professors call it an excuse when you say your late because of parking but it is a big inconvenience. Also the tickets that we get for parking are sometimes over priced when we dont have any other choice to hurry and park somewhere. One time I got a ticket that was $200 because I was running late to class while trying to find a spot.

  15. Shivam Rajput 12 July, 2019 at 14:28 Reply

    This is a post I highly agree with. Commuting has become less of convenience for some people and more of a hassle. You’re absolutely right about having to pre-plan your day around finding parking and getting to campus on time. Personally, no matter how early I leave my house, I always barely manage to make it to my class on time due to parking. I feel as if more money goes into making short-term enhancements to the campus, rather than long-term, such as a parking garage. The same issue is at UMBC, just down the road from the Catonsville campus. When my girlfriend was attending UMBC, she would complain about parking as well. For one, parking is never close to the buildings. Two, being a high commuter college/university, there were not enough spaces to park. The dilemma finally comes down to either risking it and parking somewhere to get to class on time to avoid penalties or spending time to find a spot and miss a few minutes of class. This is a choice that students who are dedicated to their education should not have to consider, but here we are.

Leave a reply