What College Students Learn From Taking the MTA to School

By Lorena Caro on September 4, 2018

Many students in New York City commute to college via the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA). For $2.75 one can get a one-way fare to any train station in the city, provided that they have a MetroCard. An empty MetroCard requires an additional one dollar fee. Most students opt for an unlimited weekly ($32) or monthly ($121) MetroCard that allows them to take the train from school to work or an internship as much as they want without having to pay for each swipe.

Via Pixabay

Commuting via the MTA is one of the cheapest options students have in terms of transportation. There’s no doubt that this system is the only one that can take one from Queens to Manhattan in forty minutes during rush hour. A city like New York that constantly revolves around a 9-5 schedule creates waves of commuters that crowd the trains from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. in the mornings and 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the afternoons. Among those commuters are high school students, tourists, people who work, and college students.

Therefore, it is important for students to plan ahead and prepare for things like not fitting into the trains and finding themselves crammed between a multitude of people all going somewhere. During rush hour, one can easily be caught so far into the crowded train, that one can miss their stop altogether. It’s no surprise that students often use excuses such as “my train was delayed because it was really crowded” or “my train kept stopping due to signal problems”.

If there’s anything that the MTA can teach college students, it’s time management skills and quick thinking skills. When it comes to deciding whether or not to squeeze into a small corner at the entrance of the train, or to whether or not to run to the train door when it is already at the platform, commuters think quickly and act immediately. College students can expect to learn to estimate quicker as well as gain an understanding of physics as they decide on a pose that will allow them to stand and avoid falling over to the side once the train lurches. Planning skills are also crucial for every commuter because every second counts when there is only a minute left for the train to pull up to the station and one is attempting to buy a metro card at the machine.

Without the MTA, college students would never be able to gain these skills.

Lorena is currently a senior at Hunter College majoring in Creative Writing. She enjoys writing stories, poetry, and painting.

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