Rutgers offers commuters help as they face upcoming winter weather
With the spring semester right around the corner, commuter students, who represent more than half the student population, have several ways to prepare for the winter weather.
Leyla Housein, a School of Arts and Sciences first-year living in North Jersey, said the commute to Rutgers can be much more troublesome during winter months. What is typically a 40-minute drive can take hours in snowy conditions. During the snowstorm on Nov. 15, it took Housein six hours to get home.
“Winter weather makes the commute longer, especially if the Rutgers buses are delayed,” Housein said.
The Rutgers Commuter Student Association (RCSA) serves commuter students and helps build a community on campus. It provides information about the various amenities that the University offers to commuter students.
In addition to programs and advocacy efforts with other organizations, RCSA helps promote the two commuter lounges at Rutgers. There is one lounge in the Busch Student Center and another in the Douglass Student Center.
These commuter lounges are places for students to go in between classes or to hang out with friends. The Busch commuter lounge has several amenities such as a microwave, refrigerator to store food, computers, seating and a television. The Douglass commuter lounge has tables, a television, seating and a kitchen.
Ash Krishna, a School of Arts and Sciences senior and the president of RCSA, acknowledges the hardships that students face in trying to make it to campus.
“Commuter students experience many hardships during the winter months. The most prominent issue that we face is the ability to even make it to campus. Some students commute from very far — New York state, even — while others commute from low development areas. Both of these kinds of students are often unable to safely reach campus, especially if they drive,” Krishna said.
Rutgers University also offers commuter students commuter lockers which are in the Douglass and College Avenue student centers.
In addition to this, students who commute by public transportation can receive discounted passes since Rutgers has a partnership with NJ Transit.
The RCSA provides students with a commuter checklist. In general, the RCSA recommends that students carry their ID, a refillable water bottle, a wallet, food, money, toiletries and spare keys in their bags. In a commuter student’s car there should be a parking permit for their assigned lot, an umbrella, a jacket, a map of Rutgers and non-perishable snacks. For inclement weather, RCSA recommends having wiper fluid, an ice scraper with a brush, blankets, a shovel, gloves, a scarf and a hat.