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How One Bruin Found Her Way to a Calmer Commute 

Joyce STM comic

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Just like the warm fuzzies Joyce Liu feels sipping pumpkin spice lattes in the fall is the similar contentment she gets from her bus commute. 

Working at UCLA as a business services analyst for Strategic Communications since January, Joyce’s role covers human resources and operations. For the first four months on the job, Joyce drove in from her home in Long Beach, covering over 100 miles in just two days.  

“Driving back and forth was a lot of mileage, time, and unnecessary stress,” she said. 

This car commute was not music to the classically trained pianist's ears. 

A colleague at Strategic Communications named Dani, another Long Beach resident, introduced Joyce to the city’s commuter line that services UCLA, Long Beach Transit (LBT). Incredulous that her fellow Bruin was driving such a distance, Dani encouraged Joyce to try LBT — and even went with her on the first ride.  

“I’m really thankful for her because, without Dani, I may not have found out about the bus system or would have been too scared to try it myself,” said Joyce. 

It turns out that taking the bus is nicer than driving. 

“With driving, I was getting super burned out and so exhausted. Taking the bus is much better for my mental health,” said Joyce. 

“Now I have a clear head in the morning and feel refreshed coming into the office, and I get to rest and reflect on my way home. And that’s great.” 

Having that downtime on the bus, where she doesn't have to concentrate on driving, allows Joyce to engage in things that are good for her, like reading a book and journaling, which she says has been nice. Also nice? The price! Gas is $6 and going up, while the UCLA transit pass cost stays affordable. 

And there’s less emissions. Joyce cares about doing her part to help the environment.  

As Dani encouraged her, Joyce has a message for other campus commuters: "Once you get past the bump of trying the bus for the first time, you realize it's much better." 

Pledge now to try transit or give another sustainable option a go this October for a chance to win prizes, including Target gift cards and UCLA Football tickets. 

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