Elon lacks advertisement for one of its most important resources: shuttle services. I take airport shuttle after airport shuttle, however each time there are only five or six students, which is surprising. Not only that, but not a single soul informed me of the Elon University Ellington Center Shuttle Service, a resource I could have used when I was in one of my worst physical states.
As I was aching and feeling like I was on my deathbed with the flu, I walked 15 minutes to the health center only to find out after my appointment that there is a shuttle service. My orientation leader failed to inform me of this, my resident assistant failed to inform me of this and the health center failed to inform me of this. This is a problem that needs to be solved in order to ensure students do not make the same mistake I did, which resulted in me unintentionally throwing up on my walk home.
Elon provides transportation via the BioBus system, sick rides and airport shuttles, but very few students know about these resources. Additionally, there is a program called E-Rides, which is a late-night one-way transportation service for students. Again, I did not know about this service. That is a problem.
There is a lack of advertisement for the airport shuttle, which should be mentioned more than just on a tour of campus. No student should struggle to find a ride to the airport, especially not when there is a service at their fingertips.
The Center for Writing Excellence is something that is advertised heavily within the Elon community. In almost every class, students are able to earn bonus points for going. This may seem like a stretch to tie into this matter, but many professors, or at least the ones I have had, include this in their syllabus and mention it in class.
The same method must apply when it comes to making students aware of both sick rides and airport shuttles. I have encountered too many students who do not understand the value of the price of the shuttle ride. Just like with the Writing Center, there is great value in advertising this service to students.
Had my Elon 101 class discussed sick rides or had my RA made me aware of it, I would have never had to walk when I was weak and sick with the flu nor would other students have to do the same.
Elon must do more to ensure students are accommodated. No student, at least in my experience, would think, “Wait, let me check the website to see if Elon has a transportation service to get me to the health center.” That is not a college freshman’s first thought when they are sick and need to see a doctor. Finding out this was available after my tumultuous experience the morning of my appointment, I was extremely disappointed.
Students should not have to dig through the Elon website to know there are many opportunities for them to use when they need them most. Many other schools do not have provided airport shuttles. However, Elon does for only $45.
It is vital that freshmen students are made aware of this during orientation, as no student should have to be overwhelmed with having to pay an immense amount of money for an Uber.
Elon should post the deadlines for registering for the shuttle on social media and provide reminders as deadlines approach. The health center should also notify patients of the sick rides service if the patient chooses to make an appointment by phone. This would ensure students can make it to their appointment in a successful manner.
Had I not remembered the airport shuttle service because of my tour, I would have struggled to figure out how to get myself to the airport.
Elon must ensure through social media, orientation and residence life that all students have the resources they need if they are struggling with any method of transportation.