Living the full college experience in a so-called “commuter campus”

by Kyla Cook | News Editor|

Ever since I started coming to CSUSB in 2009, I heard students complain constantly about how there is nothing to do on campus and that it is too hard to make friends.

The general consensus seems to blame this problem on the nature of CSUSB as a commuter school; people go to school and go straight home. Many students commute quite the distance too. I know some who drive from Victorville, others from El Segundo.

I used to be one of these complaining students although I lived on campus. I used to go home every weekend. I had no idea who my neighbors were let alone my roommates.

It wasn’t until this year that I started making friends. However, it was all my own doing.

I joined the newspaper, the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) and started working for Rec Sports. I’ve discovered that the college experience is dependent on the individual.

As a student, you need to put yourself out there to make the most of your college experience: go to events on campus, eat at the pub, etc. Some students decide to go Greek, and I understand that may not be everyone’s first choice, however, there are other options.

Just recently I learned about an organization called Keep it on Campus (KIOC). There are 30 departments, clubs and other campus entities a part of KIOC, including Rec Sports, Program Board, Athletics (who is promoting the CSUSB vs. UCLA basketball game), the Coussoulis Arena and Student Leadership and Development.

I believe that through KIOC, we can reignite school spirit and change the stigma of CSUSB being a commuter campus as well as give us a more overall enjoyable experience while attending this university.

What most students don’t realize is that a part of the fees we are required to pay annually go to fund organizations like this. More specifically, KIOC is funded through the Student Success fee which can be seen on your MyCoyote.

You pay for these programs so you might as well take advantage of them.

I had the pleasure of speaking with Mark Hartley, director of Student Leadership and Development and one of the developers of KIOC. He is very enthusiastic and I genuinely believe he cares about students and their experience.

Hartley said KIOC, like stated earlier, collaborates with a lot of different organizations and these organizations hold events for students every month.

The three main events KIOC will like to focus on are Welcome Week at the beginning of fall quarter, which included Late Night with Rec Sports; Homecoming in Winter quarter and another major event near the end of spring quarter, explained Hartley.

He also mentioned that KIOC is looking to create a student committee to gain insight on exactly what it is that students want.

If there is one thing on campus that I don’t mind spending my money, it’s KIOC.

Everyone who is complaining about the lack of school spirit should put up or shut up. Either get involved in these great programs and change the type of campus this is, or continue on with a sub-par college experience.

All the events can be found on KIOC’s web site. Meetings are held once a month on the second Thursday for those who want to become involved, especially with the student committee. The next meeting takes place on Nov. 10 at 3 p.m.

For more information, visit


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