By Ashley Bowden
Arts & Entertainment Editor
Both resident and commuter students rely on the campus shuttle service to the Broadway Mall and the Hicksville Long Island Railroad station on a regular basis. This semester, a budget cut has been implemented, resulting in a condensed schedule.
The shuttle no longer stops behind Brookville Hall. Students are instead picked up and dropped off only behind Hillwood Commons. Monday through Friday, off-loop service begins at 6:30a.m. directly to the train station, and 9:30 a.m. is the first service of the day to Broadway Mall. Service ends at 10:00 p.m. on weekdays. On Saturdays and Sundays service to both the mall and the train station begins at 12:30 p.m., with the last pickup from the LIRR at 5 p.m.. The on-campus loop has remained consistent with nonstop service every 30 minutes starting at 7:55 a.m.
For some students, the new schedule has proven to be an inconvenience. Matthew Goldstein, a transfer from Dowling College and junior criminal justice major, has started a petition to restore the Brookville shuttle stop. Many students depended on the stop to get to the train station quickly, and the additional time it took to get to Hillwood interfered with their schedules, according to Goldstein. Goldstein experienced budget cuts at his previous school as well. “I would start petition to have my voice heard, and I thought that it would be nice to bring the advocacy I did at Dowling to Post,” he said.
Goldstein has received 50 signatures on his petition. “Resident students have to walk all the way to Hillwood instead of just going straight out to Brookville,” Goldstein said. The expense of occasionally taking transportation methods such as Uber instead of the free shuttle service has also inconvenienced some students. “I think campus life should think twice before cutting something vital to the student body,” he said.
President of the Student Government Association (SGA), Giovanna Domingo, explained that the SGA is responsible for allocating the student activity fee in order to provide campus programs, resources and services. “SGA takes budgetary decisions very seriously and always acts in the best interest of the students,” Domingo said.
“After reviewing the current shuttle schedule and identifying other student priorities, SGA decided to adjust the shuttle funding to create an hourly schedule for 2017-2018,” she said. The association believes the new schedule will allow consistent service while providing other organizations and services sufficient operational funding.
“Based on feedback we received last year where there was a dramatic increase in service, there were many buses that were not reaching capacity, so we scaled back some of our routes to levels that are slightly more robust than they were in 2015-16,” Michael Berthel, dean of students, said. “We believe by enhancing service levels, it should result in optimal use of services, providing frequent transportation so students can get around on a predictable schedule, and making sure we can fund all levels of need to ensure a positive student experience,” he added.
If there are any issues or concerns regarding the shuttle bus, email firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment at the campus concierge in Hillwood Commons.