For Loyola University Chicago students, the U-Pass is the primary way to get downtown and around Chicago.
The program, which is provided in part by the Chicago Transit Authority, gives students a card worth unlimited rides on any of the city’s public transportation services. The card is provided during each semester at Loyola, with a non-optional fee included in tuition based on a minimum number of credit hours taken.
What many students may not realize is the fact that the U-Pass is not offered during the summer sessions. According to Loyola’s website, “Loyola University Chicago’s Graduate School of Business is the only program that participates in the U-Pass program during the summer months.”
Students taking classes during the summer mention the difficulty in traveling through the city.
However, there may be change coming in the near future.
“In the past, we have not offered a summer U-Pass program,” said Bryan Goodwin, director of both Loyola’s Student Center and the U-Pass program. Goodwin explained that the biggest obstacle is deciding how many credit hours are taken before the school is willing to offer the U-Pass.
The school understands that the U-Pass is the primary means of transportation for many students throughout the city. Goodwin has been working with the school to make a more affordable, flexible U-Pass program for students staying in Chicago for the summer.
“We would want to make sure that students are able to use it for the majority of the summer. We’re very well aware that it’s something students want to see,” Goodwin said.
Students taking classes during the summer weighed in on the topic, mentioning the difficulty in traveling through the city.
“The U-Pass was great and I used it all the time, but I absolutely hated how they never offered it for summer,” said Michael Hanson, a 23-year-old Chicago native who is working in Loyola’s post-graduate program.
Vicky Guerrero, a 21-year-old dual major in history and communications, furthered the sentiment.
“Without my U-Pass, I would be out a tremendous amount of money,” she said. “I already feel it by having to pay for monthly passes this summer.”