Top Kent State seniors awarded prime parking

Erica Weisburn

Parking Services rewarded some Kent State seniors with apples for achieving academic success.

The Academic Achievement Parking Lottery was launched in early September when Parking Services held a random drawing among a pool of 50 seniors with high GPAs. The 50 were then narrowed down to a final 20 students who received special apple-shaped parking stickers that allow them to park in the Student Center visitor’s lot for free.

AAPL recipients must abide by the visitor’s lot rules, which include no overnight parking. During special events they must also move their cars to their designated permit areas, said Debora Miller, administrative assistant for parking services.

The idea was developed to help utilize available parking space on campus. The bonus is filling the space with students who have shown academic success, Miller said.

Senior psychology major Cassie Simpson is grateful to be one of the reward winners.

“It is a great comfort knowing there is always parking at the pay lot and that I don’t have to worry about being late or parking so far from my classes,” she said.

Another winner, senior marketing major William Christe, said the AAPL program is one of the best programs he has ever seen at Kent State.

“Looking for a parking space didn’t take nearly half the time it usually does, and I think I may be trying even harder in my classes for the chance to be entered into the AAPL again next semester.”

Miller said her expectations for the AAPL program have definitely been met.

“(Parking Services) knew when we launched this program it would be successful,” Miller said. “I have received nothing but the highest compliments from the recipients.”

AAPL will continue for the foreseeable future, Parking Services manager Larry Emling said. Each semester, eligible students will be notified by e-mail during the second or third week of classes.

The stickers are non-renewable for the current winners and a new group of seniors will be chosen at random next semester, Miller said.

“Parking services is pleased to help support the university’s commitment to academic excellence and student success,” Emling said.

He said he thinks the AAPL is a win-win initiative.

“We are able to reward some of Kent State’s brightest students and at the same time creatively use available parking space.”

Contact transportation reporter Erica Weisburn at [email protected].