Hoya Transit Program
Designed to increase sustainable travel for students across the Washington, D.C., region, this program will use ridership data and feedback to inform future planning related to sustainable and affordable transportation options near the university’s campuses and in the surrounding areas.
The Hoya Transit program will provide a $100 credit to up to 3,200 students for each of the fall 2023 and spring 2024 semesters, to access the Washington, DC, region via transit within the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) system and select regional transit partners. Full-time undergraduate, graduate and professional students from all campuses may apply for the program. The $100 credit for the semester will be applied to a SmarTrip account (new window), to be used toward transit passes or standard pay-as-you-go transit. Transit passes and standard transit fares offer different options, and students will have the flexibility to select between them during the enrollment process, based on their travel needs.
Students who are interested in participating in this program for the spring 2024 semester should complete the spring 2024 participation request form (new window) no later than 5 p.m. ET on Sunday, November 12, 2023.
Participants will be selected through an anonymized random selection process from among eligible students who submitted the request form.
Participation in the program for the spring semester will be determined independent of a student’s participation during the fall semester. Students who previously participated in the program will need to complete the enrollment request form to be eligible to participate in spring 2024.
Frequently Asked Questions
Students selected to participate in the Hoya Transit program will be notified by email and receive instructions on how to enroll.
The funds deposit process is automated by WMATA on the first day of the month, which means that missing the enrollment deadline of December 10 would result in funds not being deposited until February 1.
I tapped my SmarTrip card after the first of the month, but the funds did not load. How do I receive the funds?
The WMATA system stores the funds autoload data for a specific SmarTrip card only at stations where the card has been tapped previously. If your initial tap was at a station where you have not been before, then it should now be captured in the system, and you can tap a second time at that same station to receive the funds autoload.
The funds for the Transit Pass benefit category are allotted to your SmarTrip account but will not show up as “stored value” on your card because passes are purchased online through your account and then assigned to your SmarTrip card after purchase. This WMATA transit pass document (new window) lists pass prices, and on page 2 of the document, in the “Getting Started” section, there are instructions on how to purchase passes.
The program has been adopted for the 2023-2024 academic year. Full-time students will have the opportunity to express interest to enroll for the fall and spring semesters.
Any program funds that are provided that are unused by the end of the academic year will be automatically returned to the university on May 31, 2024, and will no longer be accessible to students.
No personally identifiable information will be shared with the university by WMATA, nor will the university have access to individual account information. All ridership data provided to the university for analysis will be anonymized.
This year, participating students who need more support can apply for one additional $100 credit after their initial funds have been spent. Participating students can email email@example.com to request the additional funds.
To respond to student input for the university to consider providing more support for mass transit. The purpose of the program is to gauge student interest and ridership on WMATA transportation during the academic year. The university will be seeking student feedback on the structure throughout the program. In order to determine how best to support our student populations, the university hopes to gather data and feedback related to overall ridership, transit type, trip duration, frequency and geographic area. The data and student feedback gathered will be used to inform university public transportation options and offerings in the future.
WMATA’s U-Pass program is not a flexible opt-in or opt-out program based on individual student interest. Student leadership has conveyed a significant desire on behalf of the student body to participate in a public transit program, such as U-Pass. However, we have very little data related to actual student ridership and use of the WMATA transit system. This program aims to help determine which transportation options and offerings are best suited to our student population, based on actual ridership data and student feedback.
The funds can be used toward transit passes or standard pay-as-you-go transit. Transit passes and standard transit fares offer different options and benefits, and students will have the flexibility to select between them, based on their travel needs.
An active SmarTrip account is required in order to receive the funds. Selected participants who do not already have an active SmarTrip account will be able to create an account during the enrollment process.
Funds are deposited by WMATA on the first of each month. Enrollment must be completed by the 20th of each month in order to receive the funds for the following month. For example, enrollment must be completed by August 20 in order for the funds to be available on September 1.
Full-time designation is defined as being enrolled in 12+ credit hours for undergraduate students and 9+ credit hours for graduate or professional students, regardless of the time of day or days of the week that you attend classes.