Identifying the Need
Students at San Francisco State University wanted to be able to use their existing OneCards for transit services to and from the university and around the city, following an integration with the San Francisco Municipal transportation Agency.
The idea was to use their current SFSU student ID card as a “Clipper Card” – the all-in-one transit card already in use by Bay Area residents. They also wanted to be able to include a basic transit fee as part of their tuition package, granting them discounted transportation to and from the school. Once integrated with the Clipper system, the university needed to rapidly rebadge their entire student population with the newly dubbed “Gator Pass”.
The ISG Solution
When it came to implementing the new card printing solution, experience and proximity to San Francisco State University campus were primary factors in the school’s decision to select ISG member, Capture Technologies, for the program. Serving as the system integrator on the project, the Oakland-based company has previously provided similar integrated student transit card solutions to Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority, Mission College, Evergreen College and San Jose City College.
Underpinning the initiative is a new card printing process that reads the information on the Clipper Card and assigns it to a student ID number in the university’s database. In one pass through the card printer, the student’s information, picture, university logo and card design are all printed onto the new SFSU OneCard, making it ready to use as both a student ID and transit pass.
“It’s the ability to integrate the transit card solution with the current SFSU OneCard system that makes this a superior card printing solution,” says John Gates, director of fiscal operations at SFSU. “The integration allows for data sharing with many systems allowing the latest ID card information to be current as a new card is issued.”
The transit discounts will be activated on the first day of fall or spring semester in which an individual is enrolled as a student. The service will be active on all weekdays, weekends and holidays throughout the academic year, excluding only the summer term and the January intercession term.
OneCard/Gator Pass discounts will be active on the first day of semester for all students who have paid tuition and fees and have signed the user agreement. Transit discounts will be valid until the last day of the semester and is only valid for enrolled students in any given semester.
“Capture Technologies provided highly competent consultation and timely support which helped us to recard 30,000 students and launch our new transportation discount program in collaboration with MTA, BART and Clipper/Cubic,” adds Gates.
In addition to the new transit pass capabilities, SFSU’s Gator Pass OneCard functions as the student ID card and is used for photo identification, meal plan access, declining balance usage, physical access, and library and print/copy services.