University creates certificates for student shuttlers

Photo courtesy of Jake McLernon
Photo courtesy of Jake McLernon

This fall, George Mason University will certify drivers who are shuttling students back and forth between events.

The form, which was created by Fraternity and Sorority Life, provides information to passengers about their destination, the driver, and the organization that the driver is affiliated with.

“We’re concerned about the safety and the health of all students,” said Phil McDaniel, Associate Director of Fraternity and Sorority Life. “We want any student who decides to host or attend a party to have as much information available as possible.”

Student shuttles are not required to have a certificate.

The form specifies the driver’s automobile history, his vehicle insurance, and assurance that he is not under the influence. According to the safety guidelines on the form, everyone in the vehicle must use a working seatbelt, the pick-up and drop-off location should be the same, and events should take place within five miles of campus.

“If an incident were to arise and the chapter chose to use this form, it will be noted the chapter attempted to … ensure the safety of students,” reads a notice on the bottom of the certificate.

Jen Lougee, president of Alpha Omicron Pi, thinks that the forms are a good idea for safety.

“There are often times where people get into cars not knowing where they are going and if something were to happen at this place, they would be in trouble,” said Lougee in an email.

A student, who requested that their name and organization remain anonymous, felt that the forms are not a good idea for fraternities.

“More likely than not, some kind of rule is being broken at the party (underage drinking, common source container, alcohol in the presence of a minor, drinking games, binge drinking),” the student said in an email. The student claims that putting the information on the forms “[makes] it easier for the police/university officials to track what is going on.”

“If a driver gets pulled over by Mason [Police Department] (which is almost guaranteed to happen on a given Friday or Saturday),” the student said, “having that information in plain sight will certainly lead to issues.”