The Minnesota Student Association is considering advocating to make the U-Pass a required accessory for University of Minnesota students.
The U-Pass gives University students unlimited access to all Metro Transit public transportation options in the Twin Cities, including bus and light-rail lines. Right now, any interested students pay $100 each semester to hold the pass.
MSA President Joelle Stangler sent an email to University students on Monday asking them to take a poll and help the student government determine whether charging all students for a required U-Pass would be beneficial.
The poll mentions that a required U-Pass would mean the pass would cost less per student than the current fee, but this would only be because all students would shell out more in services fees each semester for the initiative.
MSA previously helped implement change in University campus bus routes. After a survey to discover how students used campus buses, a committee of student leaders and other officials enacted a new set of routes this year.
We appreciate the work MSA is doing to enhance transportation options for University students; however, we think requiring students to purchase a U-Pass will do more harm than good.
Required fees, like the $430.51 in student services fees charged this fall, already burden students each semester. If students want to purchase a U-Pass, this option is available to them. The current system works well, so we hope MSA will not weigh students down with further financial obligations, especially when options like walking or the Campus Connector are available free of charge.