College can be the most time consuming and expensive time in students’ lives. But I have discovered something that can cure both problems, so sit tight and consider this.
Not too long ago, I lived as a volunteer English teacher in the great city of Ningbo, China. You know, like, white rice and the smell of raw fish, paper puppet shows and elderly people exercising in the park, China.
Among the many phenomena I experienced in that bizarre and wondrous country, there was one that particularly stuck out.
Imagine a busy intersection in a city, and the crowd of pedestrians waiting for the walk signal to flash. Now put all of those people on Vespas and multiply them into the thousands. And what we have is a sea of Vespa drivers speeding down the sidewalks and streets, covering every space in the road lanes and walkways — like a stampede of buffalo on the plains of Oklahoma. It was almost a comical sight to behold.
The point to be made is that China somehow has the right idea.
So I can’t help but wonder if Dixie State University could take on a similar alternative transportation trend.
As an avid biker myself, I have noticed a quality and quantity deficiency in Dixie campus bike racks and motor scooter parking spaces. It’s not a matter of unavailability on those bike racks that’s a problem; it’s the scarce amount of bikers and motor scooter drivers unseen making their way around campus.
Dixie would greatly benefit from promoting and supporting alternative transportation for students on and beyond campus. If bike racks were given an upgrade and motor scooter parking spaces were painted in more convenient locations, it would support a community that favors a simpler lifestyle of travel.
A more centralized place for bikers to lock up their wheels would be an ideal example as opposed to the scattered and rusted metal racks that are found in the most odd places on campus.
When it comes to safety concerns on the sidewalks of campus, it is only a matter of providing the right bike and scooter lane accommodations.
The catch is, how would Dixie students be convinced to give up their super easy and convenient mode of travel to and from school?
Easy: It’s the best way I’ve found to save money in college. Students will almost always choose their cars to get from place to place over a bicycle or Vespa. You can usually count on a car to get you to places quickly and safely. However, you can’t always rely on traffic to be decent or for your engine to never break down. It’s a given that alternative transportation can help a student save money.
Also, bikes and scooters can often avoid stoplight traffic by taking detours through parks and parking lots. A little bit of time efficiency never hurt anybody.
I am a special case because I don’t have much choice in my mode of transportation. I have never owned a car and have been relying on my bike to get from point A to point B since high school.
I’ll be the first to argue, though, I’ve never once complained about the situation—even in 30-degree weather, hardcore rain storms, and pumping up the hill on Foremaster Drive in 110 degrees.
Taking my wheels to work and school is essentially the only time I can listen to music and not think about anything else. It’s also the best workout I could ask for, especially in this hill-infested valley. My chances of getting in shape are never short.
Fill up those bike racks and motor scooter parking spaces and change the Dixie reputation to be a healthy and convenient place to get a college degree and get around the lovely town of St. George.