Thanksgiving break is less than a week away, and students will soon be emigrating en masse from UR. For those who live in the northeast, the best travel option is typically to drive home. Since many students are without cars on campus, this means having their parents drive both ways. This – coupled with most student car-owners individually driving themselves – is not only inconvenient, it does continuing harm to our already-over-polluted atmosphere.
The best solution to this problem is simply to carpool. This option is mutually beneficial for drivers – who can save money on gas and have some company for the trip – and passengers, all the while reducing the environmental impact of traveling.
Perhaps the biggest obstacle to carpooling is matching up drivers and passengers for a given destination, since many students may not already know someone from their area that can give rides. This is why there is the online Ride Board (http://sa.rochester.edu/roadtrip). To date, however, there are only four students offering rides and eight students requesting rides on this Web site.
The Ride Board is a useful mechanism for those who wish to give and receive rides, and it should be more widely utilized and advertised. There was strong initial promotion of the site when it was developed two years ago, but this has since fallen off. New students – those most likely to need this service – may not even know it exists.
Though most students have made travel arrangements for Thanksgiving far in advance of this week, the winter holiday break presents a new opportunity to get the word out about the Ride Board and encourage its use. As an inexpensive and efficient means of transportation, carpooling should always be considered.