Trips to Pitt are a big hit

Emily Moore, Staff Writer

Pitt-Johnstown Student Affairs Vice President Shawn Brooks has proposed free transportation for students to go home to Pittsburgh during breaks.

According to Brooks, he got the idea from his experience working at Pitt-Oakland.

“I worked at the Pitt-Oakland campus for a number of years, and they actually have a similar program there,” said Brooks.

“I want to ensure that everyone who wants to get home for a break has an opportunity to do so, and they are not limited to staying on campus for lack of transportation.”

According to Brooks, the bus trip to Pittsburgh over fall break was to be a trial run for future break trips.

“I am currently considering Harrisburg and possibly Philadelphia; I want(ed) to pilot the program with the Pittsburgh trip before committing to other locations,” said Brooks.

“Depending on the pilot program, we are looking at expanding it for the other breaks, but I am not ready to commit to which breaks until we see how this one goes.”

The pilot over fall break went well, according to Brooks. About 25 students took the bus either way.

Amtrak has provided train transportation for students to go to-and-from Pittsburgh for many years.

Sophomore Caitlin Reiger has taken advantage of the train services for two years.

When she heard about the bus transportation, Reiger said she refunded her train ticket.

“If you do not purchase the more expensive ticket for a full cash refund, they will still refund your ticket for credit,” said Reiger.

“Plus, they have a new service where if you buy two weeks in advance, they offer a saver ticket for a good deal cheaper; I did notice that they do not offer saver tickets for big dates like Thanksgiving.”

Having the freedom to change her plans gave her an advantage.

“I was able to refund it for credit to use because I did not want to take the campus bus that leaves from Pittsburgh at 7 p.m. on Monday and get back on campus by 9 p.m.,” said Reiger.

“I would rather get back to campus in the morning on the train so I can do the homework that Lord knows I will not do at home this weekend. I plan to take the bus home but the train back.”