The fall semester is coming to an end and students have mostly good reviews about Queens College’s new shuttle bus services.
Based on the students’ responses, QC’s new shuttle service did a great job bringing students to and from the major transfer points, Flushing Main Street and Jamaica Station. Many students feel the new service has helped them reach their destination more swiftly than their previous mode of transportation: the MTA.
Some students feel the transportation service has lost some of its efficiency pertaining to arrival time, causing students to arrive late to class. Sheryl Bisono takes the Jamaica shuttle bus and says when the shuttle bus arrives late it severely affects her academic work.
“Sometimes the timing is different, which will make me miss a class or rehearsal. There were times when professors wouldn’t let me into class because I was already over the five minute grace period,” Bisono said.
Students would also like the Jamaica pick-up point to be closer to Jamaica Avenue rather than Sutphin Blvd. An anonymous shuttle bus committee member said the Jamaica pick-up point is placed on Sutphin Blvd to increase enrollment for potential students living in Long Island, hence Jamaica’s pick-up location’s proximity to the LIRR station.
The committee member suggested that if Jamaica students would like their pick-up point to be closer to Jamaica Avenue, they should send their concerns to firstname.lastname@example.org. The committee member went on to say when enough students complain about their pick-up point the committee would have no choice but to address the matter.
“I have to walk from Sutphin Blvd towards Parsons and Archer Avenue. It’s about a five-ten minute walk. It makes a big difference especially when it gets colder and darker,” Bisono said.
The shuttle service has a committee with approximately 10 members, which includes members from Student Government (SGA), Public Safety, The Vice President, Procurement, Student Affairs, Marketing & Community Department, Office of Information Technologies (OIT), Finances, and Vice President of Student Affairs and Accounting. Vice President William Keller is the chairman of the committee, but all parties involved vote for the changes that students request.
Students typically go to the Vice President of Student Affairs, Adam Rockman, or SA President Raj Maheshwarl. Each request goes through a series of assessments that analyze the cost, safety of drivers and students, how many students will benefit from that particular change, and how will it affect the departure and arrival time.
Some students also think the rides should extend to guest coming to an open event hosted by QC.
“If our school has an event, they should incorporate the parents. I think the school should also allow parents to take a ride,” accounting major, Caroline You said.
However, the experience has been unpleasant for some students.
Education major, Tanisha Edouard recalled a particular event that took place on the Jamaica bus. Edouard was searching through her bag for her QC ID card when she was spoken to harshly by the driver then kicked off the bus for not finding her ID card fast enough.
“I’ve had two altercations with one driver. He was very unprofessional and made a big deal that I could not find my card fast enough. Then he kicked me off the bus,” Edouard said.
Students can report any incident on the shuttle buses to Public Safety. From Public Safety the report is given to the committee where all necessary actions take place to ensure it does not occur again.
Overall, student responses to the new shuttle services remain positive. Based off their responses, students prefer the shuttle service over the MTA as a mode of transportation to school.
“I take the Flushing shuttle bus, I think it’s great! I like it; I take it every opportunity I get,” computer science major, Manuel Kim said.