Since 2004, the Office of International Programs and the department of Housing and Dining Services have offered a shuttle service to different locations in Manhattan for students without cars.
The shopping shuttle buses pick up students at the west side of the K-State Student Union at Bosco Student Plaza, Jardine Apartment Complex, and Moore Hall, and transport an average of 40 students every Wednesday and Saturday. Some locations include Wal-Mart, the international food store, ALDI and the mall.
“Manhattan doesn’t have public transportation, and this year we have an increase in international students,” said Manpreet Rai, graduate assistant of the international programs office.
Rai said with the increase of international students who don’t own a vehicle, the shopping shuttle has become a very valuable service.
“The students are very appreciative of our efforts, especially when they don’t have cars,” Rai said.
This service is open to all K-State students. Students merely need to bring their Wildcat ID to board the shuttle.
“Any student at KSU can use the shuttle,” Rai said. “It is primarily international students who use it, but it’s open to everyone.”
According to the international programs Web site, K-State has worked hard to accommodate the new international students and has helped them with the transition to Manhattan and Kansas.
The continuation of the shopping shuttle is a part of the Office of International Programs’ goal to assist these students.
“I am from China, and it is not very popular to have a car [there] because everything is so close, and that is not the case here,” said Jingyi Chen, freshman in finance. “I normally go every two weeks on the shopping shuttle, but sometimes I need to go every week.”
Chen said the shopping shuttle is very convenient and she is very grateful to have it available to her.
“The shopping shuttle is definitely great for the international students because it is really hard for them to get to a store and buy what they need while they are here,” said Heidi Minnihan, peer adviser and driver of shopping shuttle vans.
Minnihan said the shopping shuttle is so popular that last week they rented four vans and were completely full. Though the vans were full, the shopping shuttle program will continue to accommodate as many students it can.