North Texas Daily

Making UNT your home town

Making UNT your home town

Making UNT your home town
August 08
15:02 2014

By On The Record staff

Buses

Instead of walking the mile to Apogee – or worse, attempting to find a parking spot on campus in the middle of the day – how about taking the bus? UNT offers several routes that take you from Point A to Point B both on time, hopefully, and without hassle.

Take the Mean Green for access to the most frequented buildings, such as Kerr Hall, Fouts Field and the GAB. If you’re heading to the gym, the North Texan conveniently drops off passengers at the Recreation Center, among other major campus points. Although the Eagle Point and Campus Cruiser routes can also take you to UNT’s athletic spots, they don’t offer services during the summer semesters. The latter of the two, however, should be your primary route for night and weekend service to Discovery Park in the fall. If your classes require you to travel back and forth, the Discovery Park route is perfectly capable of closing the 5-mile gap between the research center and UNT.

For access to the Golden Triangle Mall, hop on the Colorado Express, which takes you even as far as Brinker Road. And at the end of the day, you’ve got your choice between three routes. If you live off-campus, the Centre Place, Bernard Street and Sam Bass routes link UNT to The Republic, University Place and along Highland Street, in addition to other stops. Bottom line: Spend your time wisely and study for that history exam – or listen to the new Land Del Rey album – by taking the bus. You’ll thank us when you find yourself not only avoiding traffic, but also getting to your destination in a cinch.

For more information on routes and schedules, visit https://www.unt.edu/transit/routes_sched.html

Food

Nobody, especially freshmen, like being told what to do. First-year students living on campus are required to pay for a meal plan, so it’s no surprise you hear so many bad reviews of cafeteria food.

Get over yourself. There are five UNT cafeterias on campus and ample opportunity to eat great meals three, four or five times a day if you so desire, as long as you learn the tricks.

Let’s start with the meal plans. If you live on campus, you probably have an unlimited plan. I’d recommend the five-day plan instead of the seven-day, because the only cafeteria open during the weekend is Kerr Hall, which serves up the week’s leftovers. If you’re off campus, you have a variety of commuter plans to go with. One-a-day – giving you one meal swipe each weekday that doesn’t roll over – sounds appealing and offers some of the best discounts, but it’s very hard to use it day in and day out. If you go with that, make sure you single out a time in your schedule (preferably between classes) to go eat and stick with it.

Ok, ok, a commuter plan is too much commitment for you. It’s just $7.52 with tax to get into any dining hall, and includes as much food as you can eat. You can’t even get a whole Jimmy John’s sandwich plus a drink for that price.

Now, the tricks: the first, and most important, is menus are available online. Go to www.dining.unt.edu/dininghalls and search for appetizing options. Bruce Hall is always going to have a sandwich “shop” and solid pizza choices (don’t overlook their soup!), and after a seating expansion last semester, it’s the most consistent choice of the five. Champs at Victory Hall will grill your burgers or grilled cheese on the spot. Mean Greens at Maple Hall is a vegan cafeteria, and the breakfast is fantastic no matter how much meat you eat normally.

West Hall is more inconsistent, but if you catch it on the right day, it has the best food of all cafeterias. “West Wednesdays” feature fried chicken, mashed potatoes and campus’ best mac-and-cheese, but get there early. In fact, West chefs generally know how to cook things with cheese, because the grilled cheeses are also fantastic. Those usually show up on the menu twice a week. Remember: check online.

If cafeterias just aren’t your style, there are other food options on campus as well.

The temporary food pavilion in the center of campus tries to include food services that used to be in the union. Not to mention the convenience store type snacks available, as well as fast food options like Chick-fil-a and Taco Bell. A refrigerated section holds salads and parfaits. The pavilion is a one-stop shop for a quick snack or small meal.

Another spot for quick eats is the café on the second floor of the General Academic Building, adjacent to the food pavilion. The café offers the same salads and packaged sandwiches as the pavilion, but specializes in selling Caribou coffee when open. There are also similar cafés in Wooten Hall and Willis Library.

It might take a little trial and error, but UNT Dining has good food – sometimes, you just have to know when and where to find it.

Computers

You’re in a pinch. You forgot an assignment was due tomorrow morning and you need a place to complete the deed. Well, you’re in luck because UNT has some extremely useful computer labs in numerous buildings and I’m not just referring to the abundance of desktops at Willis Library either. I’m talking about the cozy labs tucked into random buildings across campus. The University’s number one lab is in room 255 in Chilton Hall due to its central location on campus, the number of empty seats and the nice quiet environment provided. A few others worth checking out are the labs in Matthews Hall room 307, which includes a “group project room,” and the general access lab in GAB room 330 complete with a plethora of both Macs and PCs. Check out the complete list of labs at http://computerlabs.unt.edu/location-labs

Parking

There’s something you should know before you ever put your car in gear: parking is awful everywhere. Still, navigating the roads on a construction-riddled campus is tricky enough. Here’s a guide that will hopefully save you a UNT parking ticket or even a trip to the tow yard.

Meters v. Passes

If you’ll be in a building for a short time, I suggest the parking meters, where two quarters buys you a maximum of 60 worry-free minutes. They’re located on Hickory and Fry Streets next to the Language Building, Highland Street next to the Coliseum and Chestnut Street near the Health and Wellness Center. However, the meter maids check from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. and assign $20 tickets if you run out of time.

If you’re looking for something more long-term, just suck it up and buy a parking pass. General parking is $135 for a yearlong pass. Lots are located by Fouts Field, Discovery Park, Oak Street Hall, Greek Housing and the soccer fields by Victory Hall. Those with “G” permits can park in “P” lots after 5 p.m. and anywhere on campus, except “R” lots, after 10 p.m.

Premium parking is a little pricier at $225 per pass but the lots are in closer proximity to classrooms on the east side of campus. Locations run along Welch and Bernard Street but you can also park in “G” lots at any time. These permits can get you into “A” and “D” faculty reserved spots after 5 p.m. and anywhere, except “R” lots, after 10 p.m.

To get an “R” pass, you have to live on campus and pay $250. You get access to the lots located around the dorms, except for students in Victory. You have to move your car for game days at Apogee. Tell your parents and friends from home that they can park in your dorm lot from Friday after 3 p.m. to Sunday before 6 p.m..

Of course, if you’re cool and have a motorcycle, you can buy a pass for $105 and park in random “M” spots located near the central part of campus.

Tips and tricks

Fry Street bar goers: in case you didn’t catch any of the times above, parking isn’t enforced in any of the lots after 10 p.m. on weeknights and from 3 p.m. on Fridays to 6 p.m. on Sundays, according to university parking rules and regulation. If you’re the designated driver and can find a good spot, take it.

This also means you can get princess parking in Neil Smatresk’s reserved spot if you’re trying to get some late-night homework done at Willis Library. Just make sure you leave before 7 a.m., both for your sanity and your wallet’s sake.

As for short-term parking for the STUB, there is 30 minute parking in front of Crumley Hall. If you’re completely lazy and don’t want to walk that far, you can always park in front of the STUB and throw on your emergency blinkers. While I have done this in a pinch, I don’t recommend it. You never know when the parking fairies or the UNT police will come by.

Driving in general is a little difficult around campus so pay attention to road signs. You don’t want to be the freshman turning left on Hickory. You will get pulled over, you will get a ticket, and your friends will laugh at you.

Health Resources

New students coming to UNT in the fall will have resources at their disposal in terms of health and benefits at the Health and Wellness Center.

The Health and Wellness Center is located on the third floor of Chestnut Hall and is open from 8 a.m. to  5 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9:15 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday.

The center offers services that include STD testing and treatment, biofeedback, counseling and checkups. Students can also get X-ray screenings, physical examinations and cholesterol testing.

Transgender resources are also offered, including hormone replacement medication and relationship and school counseling.

However, the health center is not a hospital, and students are recommended to call 911 in the case of emergency.

Students can also get prescriptions filled downstairs in the pharmacy as well as take care of their visual needs at the College Optical Express.

Emergency care is also offered through the Health and Wellness Center, though it is comparable to a hospital.

Before using any of the resources and facilities though, people must make appointments in advance. They can either make appointments online at http://healthcenter.unt.edu or by calling 940-565-2333. Appointment times are from 8 a.m. to  4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Fridays.

Feature image: Information technology junior Jacques Dilonga leaves the serving line at the Bruce Hall cafeteria with a full plate. Photo by Edward Balusek/Visuals Editor

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