Software Issues Halt UPUA Umbrella Rental Program
One of UPUA’s most promising initiatives — an umbrella-sharing program — will not come to Penn State anytime soon. The initiative, which teamed UPUA with New York company ‘brellaBox, was supposed to arrive this semester, but “software issues” with the company will keep the boxes off campus for the foreseeable future.
The ‘brellaBox system, as described last October when the initiative was first passed, would have been a way for students to rent umbrellas via vending machines of sorts that would have been in four locations on campus. Students who got caught on campus without their umbrella in a storm would have been able to rent one from the boxes and return it later.
The system was unanimously approved in the fall, and UPUA agreed to spend $11,250 on a total of four machines including 200 umbrellas for a 12-month period. UPUA will be fully refunded for the boxes, making it as if the initiative never existed.
“While we are disappointed that ‘brellaBox will not be a reality here at Penn State, we will continue to look for ways to provide our students with the latest and greatest innovations in college campus facilities,” UPUA Facilities Chair Brent Rice said in a press release.
The initiative, a fairly simple, common-sense idea, would have been an easy way for UPUA to gain visibility of its work on campus and keep some students dry. While this isn’t the most significant problem, umbrella-sharing would have provided tangible progress and given UPUA momentum to continue with its initiatives.
Good news though, I guess, if you like getting caught in the rain.