THIBODAUX, La. — Beginning Friday, Nicholls State University students will have a new way to scoot around the campus.
Nicholls has partnered with scooter-share company, Spin, and Zagster, a dockless mobility startup based in Massachusetts, to bring e-scooters to students as a way to enhance campus recreation and alleviate parking limitations.
“We are very excited about having the pilot Spin scooter program on campus,” Austin Wendt, SGA president said. “We believe that this program will be beneficial to students by providing them with another recreational activity, efficient and sustainable transportation around campus, and a chance for community building. Being that we are the first campus in Louisiana to have such a program like this, all eyes will be on us and how this program operates on this campus.”
Spin will deploy 100 of the orange, dock-free e-scooters at 27 locations every morning at 7 a.m. and pick them up again at 7 p.m. as part of the pilot program.
Using a scooter is as simple as using your phone. Download the Spin app on your smartphone,
scan the barcode on the scooter and get to scooting. Once the user has finished their ride, they must return the scooter to a designated parking location. Students looking for a scooter to ride can simply check their app to see available units near them.
Each scooter is equipped with GPS to track the equipment and control speeds in certain areas for safety. The Nicholls Student Government Association has begun distributing rules of the road to the campus community in preparation for Friday.
“Through working with Sabrina Laurent, director of Student Engagement, Spin, and Zagster, it is our hope and mission to have this be a great program and pave the way for other universities to look into starting similar programs on their campuses,” Wendt said.
Scooters can reach 15 mph on the road but speeds will be limited on sidewalks and walking paths in the Quad.
A limited number of free helmets will be available on March 21-22.
Spin, which was bought by Ford Motor Company in 2018 for nearly $100 million, has seen success at other campuses, such as Troy University and the University of California San Diego, and has plans to launch in 100 cities in 2019.
Scooters will be limited to the Nicholls campus during the 1-year pilot program. Spin and Nicholls will evaluate the program, which comes at no cost to the university, at the end of a year and make changes moving forward.
Spin will hire local employees, including students, to oversee the maintenance, dropoffs and any technical issues that may arise.
Dr. Michele Caruso, dean of students and associate vice president for student affairs, says the new e-scooters can be both a safe and fun way to get around campus, as well as a way to help decrease parking problems within campus.
“We are excited to add an eco-friendly and affordable transportation option for our students,” Dr. Caruso said. “We also want to encourage our students to be mindful of pedestrians and other vehicles when using the scooters. The idea is that these scooters will help our students go from the residence halls or their car to class and back in a safe and fun way.”
For more information contact the SGA Office at 448-4557.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 20, 2019
CONTACT: Jacob Batte, Media Relations and Publications Coordinator, 985.448.4141 or firstname.lastname@example.org