By BROOKE CANTWELL
Published: February 10, 2012
February is an important month for Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC)’s Commuter Student Association (CSA). CSA is launching a new campaign, “I am a Commuter,” intended to raise awareness leading up to Commuting Student Appreciation Week (CSAW), which takes place Feb. 13 – 17.
CSA President Kevin Quaratino, FCLC ’13, said that the idea for the “I am a Commuter” campaign came from CSA Rose Hill. The two campus’ CSA groups had a meeting to discuss different initiatives and co-sponsorships this past month.
According to Quaratino, their goal is “to raise awareness and build up to Commuting Student Appreciation Week.” As part of the campaign, CSA will “take photos of the commuters who volunteer and post them around campus” to raise awareness that the commuting students are a very diverse group, Quaratino said.
As Quaratino explained, “The Lincoln Center campus is 50/50 commuter and resident,” and up until the 1990s FCLC was an entirely commuter college. While commuting to college campuses is, according to Quaratino, “a non-traditional college experience,” he also believes the commuters, “realize they have a safe home here and that they are welcomed and appreciated here.”
“We try to promote a lot of activities and club involvement and really push the idea that your college experience is what you make it, and it isn’t necessarily dependent on whether you’re a resident or a commuter,” Quaratino said.
In order to provide assistance to these commuters, the CSA works closely with the Resident Hall Association (RHA) to advocate for commuters. One way the CSA accomplishes this is by organizing CSA/RHA mixers. Quaratino said that the CSA held one of these mixers last semester and has another one planned for this semester.
CSA is planning on holding these activities every semester. They are also working to try to amend certain McMahon Hall rules, such as the “24-Hour Policy,” which requires commuting students apply for a guest pass 24 hours before they plan on spending the night.
“A lot of commuters have brought up the issue of spontaneity,” Quaratino said. “They want to be able to make a spur of the moment decision to stay over,” for example, after a late night of studying. The CSA is also working on many other things to improve the relationship between residents and commuters.
As part of Commuter Student Awareness Week, CSA plans to pack Feb. 14-17 with activities tailored to achieve their goal, which CSA Senator Dannaliz Mieses, FCLC ’15, defined as, “trying to work more on involving residents in the CSA… and working to ‘bridge the gap.’” The association will have sign up sheets and the activities are open to all students.
On the Feb. 13, CSA will go to “CSI: The Experience,” a simulation of the CSI television show, which is located in Times Square. On Feb. 14, CSA will go on “The Ride,” what Quaratino called, “a large party/comedy bus” that will take the students through New York City. On Feb. 15, students will go to see the Broadway musical “Wicked,” and Lincoln Center’s CSA is co-sponsoring an event with Rose Hill’s CSA to visit Max Brenner, the dessert restaurant, on Feb. 16.
All of these lead up to CSA’s party, “Urbanight,” on Feb. 17, the event Mieses said she is most excited for. “Urbanight” will be CSAW’s largest social event and will include a “mocktail” hour sponsored by RamSmart at 7 p.m., dinner, live performances, a DJ, dancing and prizes.