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Congratulations to Northwestern Cyclists on Bike to Work Challenge Win


Northwestern won its category for the third year and logged the most miles of any team during Chicago’s 2018 Bike to Work Challenge. This annual cycling challenge between organizations in the Chicago area is a friendly competition meant to highlight the health and environmental benefits of commuting by bike. The Active Transportation Alliance hosts the Bike to Work Challenge each June and works year-round to advocate for making walking, biking, and public transit safe and accessible in the Chicagoland area. 
The Northwestern University Team, consisting of 162 participants from both the Evanston and Chicago campuses, collectively earned 8,355 points for miles ridden, more than double the points achieved by any other team. Teams and organizations from across Chicagoland enjoyed the friendly competition from June 15-29. 3,468 riders from more than 300 teams representing local businesses, education, non-profit organizations and public agencies participated. Northwestern University earned the top spot in the category of Education for 5000+ employees. 
sustainNU supported cyclists during the challenge by hosting bike pit-stop events on each campus. The pit stops offered riders bike safety checks and provided complimentary services like inflating tires, greasing chains, and checking for any larger repairs that might be needed to keep bikes running smoothly. Bike mechanics from Wheel & Sprocket serviced riders on the Evanston campus, while Village Cycle staff supported the Chicago pit stop. University Police also offered free bike helmets for those registering bikes and had bike locks available for purchase. 
Along with the most points earned, Northwestern also had the top female rider in the entire challenge, Lauren Jacobs. Lauren is a program coordinator for the School of Professional Studies where she manages the Northwestern Coding and Data Science Boot Camps, and other certificate programs designed for working professionals. 
When asked about why it is important to participate in the Bike to Work Challenge Lauren said, “Initiatives like the Bike to Work Challenge are meaningful because they encourage people to participate in cycling with little pressure or barrier to entry. You don’t have to cycle all the way to work or ride every day, or do so on a fast or fancy bike – and that’s not the point of biking to work. Whatever your style, biking to work is fun, convenient, unlocks time for exercise and recreation, can save money and time and can open the door to a lifelong activity and a diverse, wonderful community.” 
Bike commuting can be an easy way to reduce your impact and, according to Lauren, “bike commuting is a great way to transition your mindset after a workday, and a fun way to explore places that you might not otherwise visit.” Thanks to Lauren and the rest of the Northwestern riders, this year’s Challenge was a huge success. 
To support campus community members who do not own a bike, Northwestern is proud to announce a new Divvy discount that is available to all University students, faculty, and staff. In May 2018, Divvy created the University Membership, which expanded the student membership program allowing faculty and staff to take advantage of the discounted $75 annual membership price. Any full- or part-time student, faculty, or staff member at Northwestern is eligible. 
First-time bike commuter Hugo Zizumbo said his colleagues encouraged him to try bike commuting during the challenge and he felt, “It was a great way to kick start the summer. It was great learning about and utilizing Divvy.” 
Thank you to all who made the Bike to Work Challenge a success! For more information on safe and sustainable cycling, visit the sustainNU Bike Resources page.