Tulane transportation services make off-campus exploration accessible, students fail to take advantage

Edwin Wang, Staff Writer

Ashley Chen | Views Layout Editor

With midterm tests in our rear view and finals on our horizon, we can all attest to the challenges of undergraduate life. Studying for exams, staying on top of coursework and keeping up with student organizations can make college a stressful endeavor. Diligent work is certainly commendable, but students should remember to spend some of their time out in New Orleans while they still live here.

When we all remember to step off campus once in a while, we are able to de-stress and gain a deeper appreciation for this fantastic city. House parties and Tulane events have their perks, but we should never forget that we live in such a unique city.

New Orleans is home to a culture unlike any other in the world. Its melted together influences from Haitian culture, French culture, Spanish culture and American culture create a city that re-enlivens even the weariest spirits. As weary college students, we ought to remember the magical world that is right at our doorstep.

More often than not, students feel they cannot explore the city because their ability to get around is limited. Of course, the lack of reliable, practical transportation is a serious problem for New Orleans in general, not just for Tulanians. But students may be surprised by the number of transportation options available to them.

Tulane’s Shuttle Service offers students easy access to neighborhoods located across the city. Routes like the Pappi Line offer stops throughout the Warehouse District, while the Medical Loop connects students to the Central Business District.

TapRide, another free Tulane service, provides on-demand transportation when you are within a mile radius of any Tulane campus, including the school’s downtown facilities. For students whose transportation needs are not met by the shuttle or TapRide, Tulane also offers discounted personal car rentals to faculty and students. Of course, three separate lines of city streetcars are also at your disposal for just $1.25.

Access to these locations entails so much more than eating great food and enjoying incredible museums. We can all benefit from the lessons of strength this city has to offer. Time and time again, resiliency has defined this city, and the New Orleanians have built a welcoming, beautiful space for people of all backgrounds.

Whether it be the NFL’s commitment to the Saints staying in New Orleans following Katrina or the perseverance of mainstays like Mardi Gras or Jazz Fest, the strengths of this city have endured, even through the toughest of challenges. Interacting with neighbors who have different stories to share and uncommon struggles to overcome provides us with the worldview necessary to succeed in this new age.

If none of these reasons have swayed you to get off campus soon, consider one simple question: what do you want your memories of New Orleans to be? The musty halls of Stern or the beautiful boulevards in Mid-City?

There is so much culture, history and beauty so close to us that our opportunities for adventure may never end. Let’s take a step outside our comfort zone before we miss our chance.

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