Aug 20, 2013
Finding a ride to campus just got a little easier.
Humboldt State University recently launched Zimride, an online ridesharing service that connects drivers and passengers for local or long-distance trips. HSU students, faculty and staff can sign in to the network using their HSU user ID or Facebook account at zimride.com/humboldtstate.
“By launching Zimride, HSU is building on its commitment to sustainability and alternative transportation,” says TallChief Comet, HSU’s Sustainability Office Director. “In addition to the cost savings and environmental benefits of carpooling, ride sharing services like Zimride help alleviate congestion and parking issues on campus.”
Once a user is logged into Zimride, they will be asked to enter their start and end points, their anticipated dates of travel and whether they are a driver or passenger. Zimride also asks users to specify how much they are willing to contribute for fuel and other costs associated with the trip. To customize their preferences, Zimride allows users to set up a profile and view other member’s information, such as their age, photo, mutual Facebook friends and music taste.
“The beauty of Zimride is that you can find someone who shares your interests,” Comet says. “This feature is particularly useful for students driving long distances, say to southern California for winter break.”
Launched in 2007, San Francisco-based Zimride has more than 350,000 users and is active on 125 university campuses, including Harvard, the University of Oregon and Santa Clara University. The company has partnerships with Facebook and car-sharing company Zipcar, which is also available to HSU students, faculty and staff.
HSU’s Zimride program was funded through a $25,000 grant from the Humboldt Energy Independence Fund and supported by a resolution from the Associated Students and the HSU student body.
“Students will find Zimride as another way to get to know other students,” said Victor Arredondo (‘14, Sociology), Associated Students Representative. “They can find themselves saving gas money, reducing a carbon footprint, and eliminating a degree of the parking issue we have on campus. It works out on multiple levels and I am glad that a ride-sharing program has found way to Humboldt besides Zipcar, Craigslist, or the bus.”
HSU has a long-standing commitment to sustainability and alternative transportation. Other alternative transportation programs include Zipcar, the JackPass program, which offers free bus rides to students with an ID and annual “Car Free Day,” during which students are encouraged to use alternative transportation.