Transportation at Loy Norrix Affects Student Life

Jonnie Palone

The first day with your own car and license opens a whole new world of freedom and opportunity to do what you want when you want.  
Having a car gives students the independence and freedom to work around their own schedule. Many of the students at Loy Norrix High School drive themselves to school with their own car and have their driver’s license. Having a means of transportation can be life changing as it makes getting around much easier and more manageable for students.
Students benefit from having the freedom to drive themselves to school. To park at Loy Norrix, students must have a Loy Norrix parking pass on their car window. According to Loy Norrix campus safety, last year approximately 150 to 200 parking passes were issued for students.
Students that drive themselves to school have to pay for gas and keep up on car maintenance. Those that drive to school either get money from their parents or support themselves with a job. Students often drive their parents cars to school but also get their vehicles for their birthdays or save up money from part-time employment to get a car.
Danny Mailloux, a Loy Norrix senior, has been driving himself to school since the beginning of sophomore year and drives a Mazda MPV van.
There are many benefits to getting your license in high school, and driving to school is one that stands out to many students.
“Having a car lets me have the independence to drive to school when I want, so I can get there on time without having to rely on anyone else.” Mailloux continued, “It’s easier to come to school when you drive yourself because I can get there at my own pace and not have to worry about anyone else getting me there late or too early.”
Thomas Mayer, a junior at Loy Norrix also drives himself to school daily. Mayer has been driving since the beginning of this year. He got his license the day he turned 16.
Getting to school in the morning can be hard for some students once they get their license. With added freedom students now have more responsibility to overcome the desire to sleep in.
“Having a car makes it easier to get to school and you can sleep in longer in the morning,” said Mayer.
A lot of students have to wake up very early to catch their bus or ride to school with their parents. According to Kalamazoo Public Schools students have to be prepared to catch their bus within at least a 15 minute window on top of getting ready for school. Students have to go outside and be prepared for their bus to arrive 15 minutes early. Students that drive themselves manage their own time and have more flexibility in the morning.
“Getting up for school is a lot better with a car because you can wake up later and get to school on your own time,” said Mayer.
Driving is a goal that students reach for during high school, but for those who do not have a car take other means of transportation.
Noah Machin, a senior at Loy Norrix, has been riding the bus his whole high school career and continues to because he has not gotten his driver’s license. Driving a car can make life a lot better, especially if you have a job or a busy schedule. Machin feels having a car could impact his life positively.
“Having a car would allow me more freedom as to what I’m doing, so if I want to hang out with friends, I could do that easily. Just getting to and from work would be a lot more convenient,” said Machin.
Although many prefer to drive themselves to school, riding a bus can be fun and rewarding also. When you ride the bus you can see friends and talk to students you normally wouldn’t see or hang out with.
“It allows me to spend time with some of my friends that I may not see or talk to during the school day,” said Machin.
Transportation is something that affects all students lives. Students manage with taking the bus daily, but if you have a license you can experience the flexibility and freedom student drivers have. Make getting to school a priority whatever your method of transportation is.

Kalamazoo Public Schools buses lined up at the end of the day to take Loy Norrix students home. The buses wait in line at Loy Norrix for students to pile out, the calm before the storm. Photo Credit / Jonnie Palone

Freshman Brendon Rice makes it out of the school quick to be first on the bus. Students try to make it out of the school promptly to get a good seat. Photo Credit / Jonnie Palone

Junior Deangelo Sanders walking to his bus with a grin at the end of the day. Sanders walks down past the gym to catch his bus. Photo Credit / Jonnie Palone

Seniors Danny Mailloux and Austin Root get ready to leave school at the end of the day. They hangout at their cars for a few minutes to let the heavy after school traffic clear. Photo Credit / Jonnie Palone

Senior Danny Mailloux, drives his MPV Mazda van out of the chaotic Loy Norrix parking lot at the end of the day. Mailloux navigates through people and traffic to make his way out the parking lot. Photo Credit / Jonnie Palone