Committee to address football busing concerns

Students and faculty have come together to organize a task force charged with improving student bus transportation and ticketing for Sun Life Stadium.

Under the leadership of Vice President for Student Affairs Patricia Whitely, this committee will address some of the issues that the system has been faced with in recent years.

“The original mission [of the busing system] is to take the students to the game and take them back,” Whitely said. “And while we’re doing that, we’re taking students home at a much higher percentage that the students who go [to Sun Life Stadium] on the buses.”

Whitely mentioned that for popular games like the one against the University of Florida, students are more likely to use the buses returning to campus than the ones going to the game. For that game, there were 65 university buses that arrived at the stadium and 120 only transporting students back to campus.

“I want to relook at our entire system and look at how we’re running it,” Whitely said. “I also want to address some of the ticket issues. For some of the games there has been a ‘no-show’ factor for students.”

The task force also hopes to tackle behavioral problems on the buses.

Of the 21 members of  the task force, nine are students. Whitely said that she looked at different constituencies that would form a diverse committee.

In order to implement the policies the task force hopes to execute, students that have been appointed to the committee are asked to agree to participate by April. If they are unable or unwilling to participate, they are asked to recommend someone to take their place.

Robby Chiste, treasurer of Student Government, is one of the students that have been asked to join.

“I think there’s an excellent group of people meeting with a wide mix of viewpoints from which they have seen the system both work efficiently and struggle at times,” Chiste said.

With the task force’s first meeting coming up next week, Whitely looks forward to what the committee has to offer.

“I want to see what they think about what’s going on and the concerns over the disparity and what they think we should do about it and be more effective in running the program,” she said.