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Five Tips to be a Successful Commuter Student

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley is primarily a commuter campus. Commuter students might sometimes feel like their collegiate experience is not as a exciting as it should be, or that they are not living the typical college life. However, what really makes a difference during those four or five years as an undergraduate are the memories you make, the organizations you are involved in, and the friends you make along the way. Here are five tips on how to make your commuter student life at UTRGV much easier and enjoyable.



Sure, you might hear this all the time, but a degree and good grades will not set you apart from other candidates searching for a job in your field. However, joining clubs or organizations will make your resume much stronger. Also, having nothing to do after classes and just going home is not very fun and will for sure not allow you to interact with others. Find a club/organization that will build up your resume and help in your future career. Here is a link where you can find the club/organization that best suits you. There are plenty of great ones to choose from! https://utrgv.collegiatelink.net/organizations  


Having to wake up extra early to get to campus on time and find a parking spot, while some of your friends can wake up 20 minutes before class and just walk, has to be the worse part of being a commuter student. Since you will be driving to campus on a daily basis, car problems or traffic could be a problem you’ll face at least once a semester. Let your professors know if you will be running late. They will appreciate the fact that you took the time to shoot them an email. Plus, it will be less awkward to enter class 15 minutes late.


Your friends that live on or nearby campus might have it easy. If they forget a book or don’t want to deal with a heavy backpack, they can go home right before class and get it! On the other hand, commuter students sadly don’t have that advantage. Having to drive home and then back to class could be a waste of time and gas so make sure to double check every morning.


What better way to maximize your social time on campus and show your school pride than by supporting UTRGV athletics? Whether it’s basketball, baseball, or soccer, there are 14 different sports at UTRGV, so there is always a game to attend, especially now, during basketball season. Here is a link to all the upcoming events, show your school spirit and support the Vaqueros!  http://goutrgv.com


Gaps, don’t all commuter students hate gaps? Having gaps between classes is probably great if you live on or nearby campus. Taking a nap or watching an episode of Grey’s Anatomy while laying in bed must be great; but unfortunately, that is not an option for commuter students. Sometimes it can be hard to find something to do between classes, especially when you don’t feel like studying or doing homework at the library, so when you have time to kill between classes, visit the UREC. The UREC serves as a free gym for students and is open from 6 a.m – 11 p.m. during the week. Theres are also many classes offered throughout the day, such as cycling, zumba, and yoga. Take advantage of all the university’s free services (aka things you paid for with your tuition). Here is a link to all the UREC has to offer.  http://www.utrgv.edu/urec/index.htm

Kenia is a junior at UTRGV pursuing a degree in Mass Communication with a concentration in broadcast journalism. She is part of the university's dance team and works as a reporter for the UTRGV TV. 
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