Crutching on Campus

By Kaylyn Smith

It isn’t always easy getting from one part of Texas Tech’s campus to the other, especially if you can’t use both legs. Many students ride their bikes or hop on one of the convenient bus routes crossing the 1,839 acres, but what about those who can’t bike or get to a bus stop quickly?

Danielle Salinsky is one of these students. She has been on crutches for three weeks due to a torn ligament in her foot, and is not allowed to walk for up to six weeks.

At first, she had trouble getting to class.

“Originally, I was taking the bus until I asked my doctor to write me a prescription for a handicap placard,” Salinsky said. “Now I drive to and from with my left foot.”

giphySalinsky said getting to class became easier once it was routine and she knew how long it would take so she could plan accordingly.

“I’d definitely recommend trying to get a handicap pass,” Salinsky said. “It makes going to class and staying motivated to go while you’re injured much easier.”

She wishes, however, that there were more places to park.

“I have class in the foreign language building but have to park in the English parking lot to crutch over there,” Salinsky said.

Fernando Urbina experienced similar problems. Last semester, he was in a cast for six weeks and then a boot for three more weeks after that was removed.

“Being injured on campus was so hard, and made the daily pain in my leg far more than bearable,” Urbina said.

It was difficult for him to stay comfortable in class because he said he couldn’t elevate his leg in large lectures.

Urbina got rides from friends to and from classes because he couldn’t drive. This made getting to class very difficult.  Once he finally heard about the accommodations Tech offers, it was too late because he was out of his cast.

“Texas Tech should promote that they want to help injured students, especially through the wellness center,” Urbina said. “I might have been helped if I would’ve known much sooner.”

Stacy Stockard, a spokeswoman for TTU’s Transportation & Parking Services, said any student with a disability can contact the department to get an ADA parking placard.

“We also offer short-term assistance parking, which was created for mobility-impaired injuries,” she said.

Students with injuries need to provide a doctor’s note to Transportation and Parking Services to get a short-term pass to park closer to their classes.

Watch this video to hear more advice from students who have navigated the Texas Tech campus while in crutches.

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