Van picks up students late at night

Jessie Hellmann

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If you see a van circling campus and picking up students at night, do not panic.

The Recreation, Fitness and Wellness Center (RFWC), Housing and Residence Life and the Office of Public Safety partnered together to organize a new shuttle program. The van stops every 15 to 20 minutes at four campus locations and started running Aug. 31.

Select faculty and students at USI come together to form the 24/7 committee, and all members work towards one common goal: helping USI transition into becoming open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Most campus restaurants, the RFWC and Rice Library extended its hours. Mark Rozewski, Vice President of Business Affairs and head of the 24/7 committee formed the shuttle idea. He said he wanted to connect students to the main part of campus.

“The idea was to have things to do that you won’t have to get in your car and leave campus for,” Rozewski said.

Director of the RFWC and member of the 24/7 committee David Enzler said one purpose of the shuttle is to encourage students to come back to campus after classes are over.

“The idea is that students come to campus for a number of reasons,” Enzler said. “One is to study, one is to eat and another is for social life.”

Enzler said the shuttle bus offers more safety and convenience for students than driving to campus can.

Among the buildings extending its hours is the RFWC. The courts, tracks, front lobby, game room and locker rooms stay open until 1 a.m. Because supervising the work out room and rock climbing area is labor intensive, it closes down at 11 p.m., Enzler said. The RFWC will host a number of activities to attract students to campus after classes are over, like indoor soccer.

Director of Public Safety Steve Woodall said the shuttle promotes the use of the library, RFWC, and is convenient for students to visit the food service options on campus.

Woodall said the shuttle doe not run on Fridays and Saturdays because many students find other activities to participate in on these days. He said the success of the shuttle relies on the students, and if the program is successful, it will be brought back for the spring semester.

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