We are sitting next to you in lecture. We are in line behind you at the Blind Duck. We are ordering coffee at the cash next to you at Tims. We are studying near you in the library until our last bus leaves campus.

We are commuters. We have #commuterproblems. And we are all over campus.

Allow me to make a general statement: UTM is informally known as a commuter campus. The majority of students on campus seem to commute—that is, take some form of public transport to and from school.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve heard of some faraway lands that our peers commute from: Mississauga, Brampton, Caledon, Markham, Woodbridge, Toronto, Scarborough, Milton—a whole bunch of places in and around the GTA. Think about it: the person sitting next to you in lecture might’ve woken up three or more hours ago to commute.

As a commuter hailing from the land of Brampton, I feel like we need to share our commuting thoughts so we can make a community out of commuters on campus (get it? :D). And so, this one goes out to:

You, with the worn out U-Pass holder.

You, waking up a ridiculous number of hours before class starts.

You, unable to stay on campus for evening events.

This is for the run-to-catch-the-bus–ers, the miway-ers, the zum-ers, the subway-ers, the all-of-the-above-and-more–ers.

Respect! You are valued and this education and campus are worth your efforts!

I want to let you know that waking up for your 9 a.m. class is pretty badass, especially the way that you only hit snooze once when your alarm blares at 6 a.m. And don’t get me started on how admirably you dress in clothes that match and are suitable for the unpredictable daily weather (rain, blizzards, sunshine, oh my) despite being half-asleep.

Your time management skills are on point too. You have memorized bus timings so well that you know the best routes to get to campus on the hour—ten minutes before class starts—and pay fare where the U-Pass just won’t cut it.

And you’re coordinated. Whether standing or sitting on the bus, you find a way to balance the gym bag, lunch, backpack, water bottle, and cell phone draped over you.

Commuting is an exhausting, stuffy mission. But you are not alone! So make some rez friends, obtain a locker, slap a smile on your face, and share your #commuterproblems below!