There exists a love–hate relationship with travelling for students, but here is why you should consider moving closer to campus.
Some students look at the commuting hours as ‘me time’, catching up on reading or brushing up their talents.
“It has some advantages too, I complete my work, and it also gives me time to read newspaper or books. The travel time is also used to compensate for the lost sleep,” says Anoushka Sharma, a second-year student of Delhi School of Journalism.But mostly, it is an exhausting task that renders them fatigued.
Metro stations like Noida City Centre, Dwarka, or Huda City Centre feature college students in their College or society T-shirts, at extremely early hours of the day, with a book in their hand, earphones plugged in, desperately trying and failing to attend that 8:30 lecture.
A four-hour-commute is not an uncommon occurrence for many students of the Delhi University as, due to personal reasons or otherwise, they don’t shift on-campus, or to a PG or hostel close to college.
However, research has proven that a long commute could have detrimental effects on the health of the subject. Be it short-term harms like irritability or fatigue, or long-term ones like hypertension, depression, or risk of heart-attack. Even though these may seem like a far-fetched outcome at the moment, there are, still, inconveniences that students face on a daily-basis.
Many students throughout the University have classes scheduled at 8:30 A.M., which to be fair, is a very decent time to begin education. But for that, students have to leave their abodes as early as 6:30 – 7:00 A.M., and are often late to lectures. A more convenient option for them is to skip that class, and miss on that particular subject.
Sakshi Arora, a first-year English Honors student of Gargi College says that her first lecture gets skipped often, because if she were to be in college at 8:40 A.M., she would have to wake up at 6. And it is fact widely acknowledged that early-morning sleep in winters is rather close to all of our hearts.
Delhi University is famous for its extra-curricular and each society demands a lot of time. In doing so, the commute gets pushed to later hours, which is a problem for a lot of the students, especially girls. “I have been commuting from Gurgaon to North Campus for three years now. While the metro is comfortable, I still consider taking a PG every other week because of the long college hours, thanks to being involved in multiple college societies and other ECA work,” remarks Bhavya Banerjee, a third-year student of Daulat Ram College. “I have a curfew which I cannot miss, and it means compromising on my college, or society work,” Jaishree, a second-year Ramjas student adds.
The Delhi Metro is applauded and appreciated by almost all of the students. “My sister taunts me by calling metro my second home. I am in the metro for 4 hours every day,” Sharma says. But the catch here is that the metro isn’t as well developed in the peripheries as it is in Delhi. Even after the end-stations, most of the students have to take a bus, an auto, or a cab to reach their destination. While metro could arguably be called a safe method of travel, it usually doesn’t put an end to all of the problems.
Another problem that students face is the holes that commute burns in their pockets. College students are anyway on a non-liberal budget, and a considerable chunk of it is spent on autos and metros every day. “I pay a lot more for commute in a month than my college tuition for a semester,” Sakshi added.
Many colleges offer on-campus accommodation for students and it does not get much more convenient than that. Imagine waking up at 8:15 for an 8:30 lecture, and actually making it to class on time!
The three or four hours spent going to and for could be put to better use. I won’t be preachy and say that you should study every minute you get. But think of improving your debating skills, or practicing extra with the theatre group, or helping the kids at the NGO for an extra hour. There is a lot you could do when you have 240 extra minutes in your day.
When you get home, your commute does not stop there, the hangover is still following. The fatigue demands at least an hour of rest, and another for procrastination. So the four-hours that are actually seeping from your day are much more than that in actuality.
Many great PG and hostel facilities are coming up, not just around the North and the South campuses, but near off-campus colleges as well. So if living conditions are a problem, you could check that off of your list. If budget is a concern in this case, these rooms are also available on double or triple sharing basis, which substantially reduces the cost.
We have students like Akarsh Mathur, who say, “travelling from Noida is so difficult, that I go to college once a month.”
I leave you all to be the better judge of your situations, and understand that time is the most important resource that we have. We must not waste it.
Image credits: DU Beat