Students commute to the challenge

By Marie Canavan

With a little more than 26,000 students,   UK creates pollution from everyday transportation of students and staff. However, UK Parking and Transportation Services is trying to soften the community’s carbon footprint.

For the third time, UK will participate in the Commuter Challenge, a nationwide competition that encourages students to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide emissions on college campuses.

“The Commuter Challenge raises awareness about different types of alternative transportation on and off campus,” said Chrissie Balding Tune, the PTS senior marketing and promotions specialist. “Hopefully some of our participants maintain new commuting habits well past the end of the challenge.”

During October, PTS wants all students and facility members to join in on reducing carbon footprint by taking public transportation, ride share or walking.

Many students take advantage of the public transportation UK provides, but the challenge aims to influence students to choose environmentally-friendly ways their permanent transportation.

UK is competing against six other schools, including the University of South Carolina, the University of Texas at Austin and Western Kentucky University.

“I think it makes it more fun knowing we’re competing against other schools,” senior Jessica Smith said. “I have a friend at the University of South Carolina, I’m going to have her sign up so we can see who lessens our carbon footprint more.”

To sign up for the Commuter Challenge, visit, (

Those interested can sign up as an individual or create teams to compete against one another. Every time a commute is made, the participants must log in, and the site will record the amount of carbon dioxide saved during the commute.