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Freshmen Student Parking Policy

University of Tampa students are not permitted to bring cars to campus for the duration of their freshman year (fall through spring semesters). This includes students who have enough credits to be considered sophomores at any time during their first academic year.

This policy does not apply to local students who commute to campus.

Rationale

Parking restrictions have been applied to freshmen, as it is our belief they will be least impacted by this policy. Freshman residential students live in residence halls with meal plans, and on-campus employment options are readily available. Freshmen are supported by a wide array of special social activities in their residence halls and elsewhere on campus. We want freshmen to stay on campus to become a vital and enthusiastic part of the University community and to enjoy and benefit from all the University has to offer. National research indicates that resident college freshmen who have cars on campus have lower GPAs in their first year than those who do not have cars. They are also less involved than students without cars, as indicated by the number of clubs and organizations they join.

View alternative transportation options.

Freshmen Parking Policy Frequently Asked Questions

Why are freshman students unable to bring cars on campus?
Parking restrictions have been applied to freshman students, as it is our belief they will be least impacted by this policy. Freshman residential students live in residence halls with meal plans, and on-campus employment options are readily available. Freshmen are supported by a wide array of special social activities in their residence halls and elsewhere on campus. We want freshmen to stay on campus so they become a vital and enthusiastic part of the University community and benefit from all the University has to offer. National research indicates that resident college freshmen who have cars on campus have lower GPAs in their first year than those who do not have cars. They are also less involved than students without cars, as indicated by the number of clubs and organizations that they join.

If I come in with enough credits to be classified as a sophomore student will I be able to bring a car?
No. This policy has nothing to do with credit hours earned, but rather has to do with “freshman” admission status as defined by the University admissions policy.

Is obtaining an off-campus job or internship grounds for an appeal?
No. If students choose to work during their freshman year, the University encourages students to work on-campus or obtain a job close to campus. Career Services is a great resource for students who are looking for employment. Find on-campus jobs and nearby off-campus jobs at http://www.ut.edu/hireut or by emailing hireut@ut.edu.

Can I bring a car anyway and park it somewhere else?
We ask that students comply with the spirit of this policy by not bringing cars to campus with the expectation that they can be parked on the streets or in public areas. Since UT is located in an urban environment, there is very limited parking available off-campus. Public parking garages and lots are at least a 15-minute walk from UT’s campus.
There are public parking garages and lots in the surrounding downtown Tampa area where students can rent parking spaces on a monthly basis. However, it is the student’s responsibility to research this information, and availability is extremely limited. We strongly prefer students adhere to UT’s parking policy regarding freshmen. For more information about off-campus parking locations, visit the City of Tampa’s parking website.

I’m a freshman student, but I plan to live off campus and commute. Can I park my car on campus?
Yes. Commuter students are exempt from this policy.

Will any exceptions other than medical be considered?
No. Only waivers that are medical in nature will be considered for a parking waiver. See below for more information about Medical Parking Waiver Exceptions.

What if I have guests visit me?
Visitors are required to obtain a free visitor parking pass between the hours of 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday or when visiting overnight. Guests, including family members, may stay a maximum of three days per academic year in the residence halls. Visitors may park in designated visitor areas in Rick Thomas Parking Garage; entry to this level is located on North A Street, West Parking Garage second floor and Admissions parking areas can be used outside of Admissions business hours (7 a.m. to 5 p.m.).

Medical Parking Waiver Exceptions

The University recognizes that in some instances there are medical needs that necessitate students who do not otherwise qualify to have a motor vehicle on campus. To be granted a medical exception for a vehicle as a freshman campus resident, the student making the request must be formally accepted to the University.

If you have a permanent disability or medical condition that necessitates the use of a vehicle, we suggest you apply for a handicapped placard from your home state or from the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. Freshmen students with this placard will be approved for a vehicle.

For other medical situations, the accepted student must send an email documenting the medical need, along with medical supporting documentation, to freshmenparking@ut.edu. This information will be reviewed by the Office of Disability Services. If you have any other type of disability, the Student Disability Services office will assist in determining your needs, including making a determination about the need for a vehicle on campus. The recommendation of the Student Disability Services Office will be forwarded to the Freshman Parking Committee for a final decision.

Once the medical transportation waiver request and supporting documents are submitted, it will be reviewed by the Freshman Parking Committee for a final decision. Medical transportation waiver requests will be reviewed on a rolling basis and waivers will be kept to an absolute minimum. Requests for fall admission must be received no later than July 1. Requests for spring admission must be received no later than Dec. 1. After each deadline, the application period is closed until the next semester. Students will be notified via email within 10 business days if the request is granted and will go through the regular parking permit registration process. Medical transportation waiver requests must be approved prior to bringing a vehicle onto campus.

Please note that medical exceptions will not be granted for the purpose of providing care for a family member or relative. The documented medical need must apply to the student filling out the appeal.

Falsifying Information

Freshmen who obtain a parking permit by providing falsified information, as well as upperclassmen who attempt to purchase a permit for a freshman, will have future parking privileges revoked and may face student conduct action.