Bus driver shortage leads to athletes finding their own transportation to events


On Apr. 4, Uni Athletic Director Tim Bicknell sent an email to Uni’s track and field parents and athletes. The email stated that due to the shortage of bus drivers, the majority of meets in the foreseeable future will not have buses to take athletes to and from their meets. As Bicknell communicated to both Director Elizabeth Majerus and Associate Director Karl Radnitzer, Uni will still be entered into track meets, but, as stated in his email, “with families providing their own transportation when we cannot purchase a bus.”

“My mom doesn’t want to drive for a bunch of meets and it’s more convenient to have a bus,” explains freshman Stepheny Ek, who competes for Uni’s track and field team. The new development does require some flexibility as parents aren’t always able to stop work to drive athletes to their meets. To assist with this transportation issue, coaches will sometimes drive SUVs, and there’s a sign-up sheet to see who can make it to the meets without buses.

Something similar has happened with Uni’s girls soccer team. However, it’s less frequently an issue. Freshman girls soccer player Marina Bowers-Wong stated that once the team also had to rent SUVs for transportation to a game due to a shortage of drivers.

Junior track runner Kate Ahmari explains the upside to the situation, saying that lots of the athletes can “drive themselves and take other people.” However, Ahmari notes that “it is still an inconvenience.”

Going forward into the next weeks of meets and games, Uni students and parents must keep a positive and flexible outlook for the remainder of their spring sports seasons as they navigate this bus shortage.