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2014.06.3
Sharing is Caring!

In 2012 the Health, Safety and Environment Office launched a ride sharing program for faculty and staff, matching those with cars and heading to nearby locations with those who wanted a ride. There is no reason to drive an empty car when it is so much more fun with company! 

But more can be done. Where were the students, and why couldn’t they participate? Several students decided that they were going to do something about that, so they approached the ride share organizers and offered to change things. The result was a bigger, better program that now includes students. 

The student-initiated Ride Sharing Program in addition to the existing program funded by the President’s 1-HKUST Student Life Award allows HKUST staff, professors and residential drivers to offer free rides to students when they leave campus to Choi Hung, Hang Hau and other nearby MTR stations and locations. Who knew that reducing carbon footprint could also involve friendship making and community bonding? 

Best Bai, the student who initiated the program shared, “I expected the drivers in HKUST have a green mind and enjoy living a low carbon lifestyle by sharing their cars with students. In return students could show their appreciation, which will make our community more connected and plant the seeds for building a sharing culture for a sustainable future. Ideally, all drivers will open their seats for students and there will be no more empty seats and long queue for public transportation. We hope that more drivers and students will join our program!”

The group received positive feedback from on-campus drivers and students on the sharing concept but it is also challenging to transform the idea into a practical and convenient system for both drivers and students. The program is now under review during summer and they plan to launch a new mobile app next year to facilitate the communications and promote ride matching. 

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