Mar 052012
 
Authors: Jason Pohl

Students hoping to take advantage of cheaper shuttle trips to DIA this weekend better think again and set aside a little extra cash for their travel plans.

As reported by the Collegian in November, the Associated Students of CSU partnered with Super Shuttle to provide $10 discounted vouchers –– as opposed to typical $24 rate –– to the airport around the holidays with the intention of easing the travel burden.

But those nearly 600 vouchers sold out in just three days – something ASCSU President Eric Berlinberg called unprecedented.

“I’m kind of baffled, honestly,” he said. “We thought that we were going to have to try giving them away. Well, it turns out the exact opposite was the case, and they were gone.”

As part of a campaign promise, Berlinberg’s administration budgeted $6,000 for the project –– an amount he and others thought would be more than enough to keep the program going at least through the academic year and through spring break.

He explained that previous administrations offered similar programs with varying, lackluster success –– something Berlinberg described as a “flop.”

But not this time.

“I thought it was really well done,” he added.

Chase Eckerdt, ASCSU’s director of Governmental Affairs agreed that this was a surprising and popular program. He explained that the biggest reason the vouchers went so quickly in the fall was student awareness and marketing around campus.

“We rolled it out during a really busy time of the year,” he said, referring to the pending holiday season. “It’s just sort of a perfect storm.”

With the support of this program in the fall, ASCSU officials hope the idea catches on so that future administrations will budget more funds so the program can be used throughout the academic year.

“Clearly, the program had success, so you have to look for it with the next administration,” Eckerdt said. “The hope is that this is something we can continue.”

Berlinberg even drafted a version of the 2012-2013 ASCSU budget –– something he will be sharing with potential candidates at meetings this week. Though he doesn’t have any formal say in the matter, he set aside $12,000 for the program, doubling the funds from this year.

“I think it ultimately yielded some funds that could be shifted over,” he said referring to the budget trimming he did to allow for the program’s increase.

“I think it’s a high priority,” he added. “Let’s hope next year does it because students obviously need it and want it.”

Senior Reporter Jason Pohl can be reached at news@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 2:53 pm

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