The Commuter Assistant Program connects students to NSU

For commuter students, getting involved on campus may seem like a daunting task. But the Commuter Assistant Program, which started in July 2010, helps students with that.

The program helps undergraduate commuter students make connections with campus resources, meet other commuter students and get involved in campus organizations.

Gina Mercanti, CAP super-visor, said, “CAP works to help undergraduate students get more connected on campus so they’re not just driving to school, going to class and driving home.”

Mercanti said she has seen an increase in student involvement since the program started. She said the percentage of new commuter students who joined at least one organization or attended at least one event on campus, rose from 42 percent in 2009 to 55 percent in 2010.

Mei Pou Ho, freshman biology major, said that during the first few weeks last semester, she drove to school, went to her classes and drove home. But now, she is more involved because of CAP.

“The key is the longer you stay on campus, the more people you know,” Ho said. “In order to participate in CAP, you have to stay on campus, and now I’ve met a lot of commuter and non-commuter students through it.”

CAP gets students involved through programs such as CAP Mondays. The program sets up tables in the Don Taft University Center from 12 p.m. – 1 p.m. to showcase a university department each week.

Saily Regueiro, freshman biology major and CAP assistant, said, “We team up with different organizations, have prizes and try to promote different things on campus. Our program aims to do things for the commuter students, and, since we have contact with different offices on campus, we have the resources to help them.”

CAP also helps commuter students get in contact with departments they don’t know about, like where to go if they need help writing a resume, where to go if they want to get involved with service projects or student media, and where to go if they want to get involved with a club on campus.

Regueiro said, “CAP lets commuter students know that NSU has more things to offer. They can come, hang out and have a good time. They don’t just go home and not know what they can be a part of.”

Commuter students can contact CAP by e-mailing, attending CAP Mondays in the UC or visiting the CAP office in at the Leo Goodwin Sr. Residence Hall, Room 100 E.

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