By Michael Pompey

An $8 tuition charge will be added to the bill of each Western Michigan University student to pay for an aviation transportation shuttle starting fall 2013.

The Equality in Transportation Initiative passed in early April. It will increase tuition for the entire student body although it primarily benefits aviation students who need transportation to the Battle Creek facility four to six times a week.

Matthew Carlson, 22, an aviation major, said, “I do think the $8 is fair, but I believe Western should pay for it.”

This shuttle will transport any students from Western’s campus to the airport in Battle Creek, where a few classes take place and required flying practices are held.

“I understand that the shuttle will be available to us,” said Bradley Johnson, 24, a senior at Western. “How often will student(s) need to go to Battle Creek who are not in that program?”

Preston Mayes, 21, an aviation major, said, “Western students have the benefit of public transportation paid for by the student body, why shouldn’t the College of Aviation have the same benefit?”

On average, this new shuttle will eliminate up to 444 car trips a day made by aviation students traveling back and forth from class, according to reports.

“The problem is many students only vote on an issue they want to see passed,” said Carlson.

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