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Students and faculty choose long commute for 'experience'

To Hall and back

By Ashley Duvall
On February 29, 2012

While most students choose to commute for convenience, others endure the long, difficult and sometimes illegal commute.

Senior Marek Szwast commutes from Metuchen, N.J., and aside from the typically impossible task of finding a spot; he said his commute is illegal.

"The state of New Jersey took away my driver's license for a period of time," Szwast said. "Taking the train was out of the question since it required me to first go to Secaucus and then transferring onto a train that went to South Orange. A process that could take two to three hours each direction."

After deciding the train was too difficult, Szwast said he made the decision to drive without a license.

"I chose to leave my muscle car in the driveway and pick up an inconspicuous commuter car since I assume it would draw less attention," Szwast said. "Luckily I managed to get away with my less than legal commute."

Senior and triple major Antoinette Dixon commutes from Jersey City, N.J., because Seton Hall is the only school she wanted to receive her education from.

"It's too expensive for me to live on campus so I commute," Dixon said.

What otherwise would be a short commute, Dixon takes public transportation to and from her home that takes approximately two to two and a half hours.

"I take a bus from my house to Journal Square which is normally a 40 minute ride, the Path to Newark, which is a 15 minute ride and the 31 bus to the school which takes 30-40 minutes," Dixon said.

According to Dixon, the 31 bus may take longer depending on the time.

"Commuting is easier during certain times of the day," Dixon said.

Assistant Dean of Students Winston Roberts agreed that his two hour commute from Brooklyn, N.Y. is the worst in the evening.

"My night commute is the hardest," Roberts said.

Roberts, who is out the door at 7 a.m. said it is difficult to depend on N.J. Transit.

"I used to drive but it wasn't good for my blood pressure," Roberts said. "I love living in the city so the commute is part of that sacrifice."

Roberts also noted that the environment he works in is worth the commute.

Dr. Christopher Sharrett, Department of Communication and the Arts, also makes the commute because it is worth his career at SHU.

Sharrett has commuted to SHU from Connecticut for the last 23 years.

"My commute is two hours each way," Sharrett said.

According to Sharrett, while he sometimes stays with friends in N.J. he most often commutes.

"Driving gets tougher as you get older," Sharrett said. "It can be murder on your body, so you need to stop and stretch."

According to Sharrett, the biggest issue isn't the long commute.

"The biggest issue these days is the incredible volume of traffic," Sharrett said. "With that goes constant road repair and accidents. That kind of issue can turn a two-hour trip into an all-day nightmare."

Dixon is also the vice president of the Commuter Council and said she encourages commuters to join the club even though it might be hard to be active on campus.

"Don't be intimidated by the difficulty of commuting when it comes to trying to achieve your goals," Dixon said.

Roberts said he is coming the University brings back the commuter council provided for faculty.

Ashley Duvall can be reached at ashley.duvall@student.shu.edu.


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