Security demystifies the parking puzzle
Bowdoin's picturesque campus is one that's alive with energy
and on many a busy day, with heavy traffic. Though many
of Bowdoin's resources seem limitless and ever expanding, one aspect of
the campus is limited in its capacity-parking. That's where Bowdoin Security
steps in, to manage this limitation as well as possible.
An integral part of the regulation of Bowdoin parking lies
in establishing a straightforward set of rules and enacting a method of
enforcing these rules in the name of order.
As it stands now, the first parking offense receives a warning,
the second a $25 ticket, and the third results in the towing of the vehicle.
Security utilizes a highly sophisticated software program,
the Parking Office Management System (POMS) to document all parking violations
and save them to students' accounts, which are opened upon the registry
of a vehicle. This program also has the ability to plot a wide range of
statistical information concerning Bowdoin parking. (i.e. what percentage
of registered vehicles hail from each state)
Though POMS intricately documents all actions taken by students,
it does offer leniency for past grievous offenses; warnings and tickets
are only kept on file for one academic year (after which they are archived).
Rich Yanok, Parking Officer of Security, said "Students
start with a fresh slate every September."
He continued, "We're here to work with people."
These comments come in response to those who say that Security is only
out to reprimand students. In truth, no Security parking officers enjoy
towing vehicles or giving $50 of tickets. These measures are taken to
ensure that the parking system continues running efficiently.
As Yanok pointed out, this course of action has met with
great success as this semester has ushered in "a greater compliance"
This fall has been marked by what Yanok calls a change in
attitude from those he'd encountered over the previous 19 years he's served
the Bowdoin community. Students began this year with a reduced rate of
He brings to light the importance that the lines of communication
between students and Security remain open. Often, the only interaction
between the two groups comes with the dispute of a ticket.
Yanok hopes that students will feel comfortable calling
up or e-mailing him whenever circumstances arise which make sticking by
the parking regulations difficult.
"We are willing to make provisions for certain circumstances
and hope that students will communicate with us before rules are needfully
broken." Officers are in some cases willing to make exceptions to
accommodate special cases.