The Commuter’s Digest

By Heather Gershonowitz

When all is said and done, housing at The New School can cost anywhere from sixteen thousand dollars to almost twenty five thousand dollars per year. For some students, that is simply too much. Living in surrounding boroughs, even states, New School students find themselves traveling for hours on all means of public transportation to get to class.

For myself, the most difficult aspect of school is getting to and from class. Being from Staten Island, I begin my week by spending an hour and a half to two hours on a bus to get to my Journalism + Design class by noon. When my class ends, I spend almost a half hour waiting for the next bus, and then another hour and a half to two hours getting home. Although I only attend one class, I find myself in a perpetual state of exhaustion, and I think to myself , “it’s only Monday”.

Besides overwhelming exhaustion, commuting takes a toll on the social live’s of students. Veronica Darbas, a fellow classmate from Brooklyn shared her story with me. “I live about 30 minutes from the New School in Park Slope, Brooklyn. I really wanted to dorm, but the unrelenting echoes of ‘Am I really going to make my parents pay an extra $17,000 a year?’ had prevailed.” Veronica tells me that for her, it’s not to bad of a commute, however it has still managed to affect her social life and overall college experience. “People seemed to have built in bonds living in the same building. I think in some ways, it has hurt my social life, as I can easily leave once my classes are over and there goes any chance of hanging out with fellow Langsters.” Further, Veronica agrees with the argument in saying, “Dorming is just so expensive here, it’s impractical”.

The New School does not make it easy for commuters, either. The way in which classes are scheduled makes it very difficult to have any kind of job, or time complete assignments to one’s full potential. Having no way to fix this-other than taking less than 12 credits, or taking classes you don’t want to take-the only solution is to just deal with it. This sucks when you’re paying almost fifty grand a year.

Commuting for us means less time stressing about homework, and more time stressing about missing the train or bus. The commute is mentally, physically, and emotionally draining, and it’s one of the reasons I will not be in attendance at this university next year. So thank you, New School, from all of your students living in the boroughs of New York and tri-state area that simply cannot afford/ find it impractical to spend another twenty grand to live on “campus” and enjoy their college experience. Rather, thanks for nothing.☺

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