The Undergraduate Student Government unanimously passed a resolution Tuesday encouraging USC Transportation to coordinate shuttles to take international students directly from the Los Angeles International Airport to University Park Campus during orientation.
USC Transportation has already said it plans to offer such a service, but USG wanted to emphasize that students support the plan by passing a resolution.
USC Transportation has said it plans to provide free shuttle service to international students three times a day during international students’ orientation, which is before the university’s move-in day.
Tony Mazza, USC director of Transportation, said this program is geared toward international students because they arrive to a specific location at LAX at a specific time.
Shuttles to and from LAX for out-of-state students are also being discussed, Mazza said.
Though Transportation intends to offer the service, there are still details to work out.
“LAX is such a busy place and you can’t just show up there if you’re a bus or shuttle service,” Mazza said. “This program is definitely a work in progress.”
The location and exact departure time of the shuttles is still to be determined, but Mazza said they would probably leave the airport at 10 a.m., 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. from one of the international arrival gates.
“Students can still take airport shuttles, a bus or a cab, but this will be another option for them,” Mazza said.
USC’s resolution also encourages USC Transportation to increase publication of transportation options and to follow up on providing tram services to out-of-state students.
“As we get a better hold for our fiscal year 2012 budget, we can see if this will fit,” Mazza said.
Mohammad Ani, a freshman from Kuwait majoring in electrical engineering, said this option would have made his trip to USC easier.
“Shuttles would have been nice for me,” Ani said. “This was my first time in the states and I didn’t really know where anything was. Although LAX is full of taxis, a shuttle would help out someone really new since they wouldn’t have to worry if they’re going to the right place.”
Howard Fu, a USG senator who co-wrote the resolution, said he pushed for the initiative because international students brought the issue to his attention. USG created a survey on the subject and brought their findings to USC Transportation.
Eighty-five percent of the people who responded to the survey, which was publicized on Facebook and through listservs, were international students, and 91 percent of all students who responded favored of having a tram from LAX to USC.
“The aim of this is to benefit the entire student body, not just the international or the undergraduate students,” Fu said. “We just had more international students responding.”
USG also concluded that USC should better publicize its shuttle that takes students from USC to LAX before Thanksgiving and winter break, since 53 percent of students surveyed said they did not know about it.
Specific information about the shuttles will be announced over the summer.
“This will be a great way to welcome international students who have maybe not been to the U.S. or USC before,” Mazza said. “They can take the shuttle and arrive right on campus.”