This semester, Mercyhurst will launch the new Commuter Student Association (CSA), a club focused on creating an interactive community for its commuter students.
“Prior to the foundation of CSA, there was no established or organized coalition for commuter students, so I decided to start one,” Anna Czulewicz, sophomore Sports Medicine major, said.
“We received official RSCO recognition status in October 2018 and began active operations in January 2019,” Czulewicz said.
Czulewicz is the first president of the CSA and is assisted by sophomore Early Childhood and Special Education major Abi Seyboldt as the club’s vice president.
Since there have not been any organizations for commuters at Mercyhurst before, interaction between commuters and resident students have been difficult.
One of the goals of CSA is to make these interactions more effortless and more present on campus.
“We aim to achieve bringing the commuters and residents on campus closer together to bridge the gap between us,” Seyboldt said. “We hope to join together and make lasting friendships with students in and out of our major while not being in the classroom setting.”
Another one of the goals of CSA is to showcase what Erie has to offer outside of Mercyhurst.
“I believe that a very indispensable aspect of the ‘college experience’ is immersion into the city where your college is located,” Czulewicz said. “Commuters and residents alike should join CSA in order to better get to know Erie and approbate all that the city has to offer, which extends far beyond the gates of Mercyhurst.”
CSA plans to host monthly events both on and off campus to introduce its members to the various facets of Erie.
The CSA comes as part of many initiatives that we have seen in recent months to help commuters have a better college experience, such as new Campus Ministry program specifically for commuting students and updates to the Student Union Commuter Lounge.
For Czulewicz, the premise behind most of the events planned is to bring Erie to campus.
“Some of the prospective ideas that we have include a taste-of-Erie sampler featuring food from Erie’s most famous local restaurants, a drive-in movie night in the Zurn Hall or Sullivan Hall parking lot, an Erie’s best pizza voting contest and sponsored group outings,” Czulewicz said. “We would like to organize trips to local Erie landmarks, tourist attractions, venues and festivals, and possibly an on-campus concert featuring a popular local band.”
CSA will host its first monthly event on Feb. 20 from 7:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. in the Zurn Lobby. It will be a “Grab-’n’-Go Breakfast” featuring food from local bakery Jo’s Brooklyn Bagels.
Aside from events, CSA will hold a general assembly meeting once a month.
The club is holding its first meeting on Feb. 14 at 4 p.m. in the Student Union Great Room.
This will be an opportunity for social engagement, meeting new peers and exploring and understanding concerns of the commuting population.