Commuter Stories

Maureen O'Reilly and Rich Brown

The RiMa Green 500 Theatre Scholarship:
Rich Brown and Maureen O'Reilly

Encouraging students to start a lifetime biking habit is the goal of the RiMa Green 500 Theatre Scholarship, privately funded by Theatre Department faculty members Maureen O’Reilly and Rich Brown since 2009. “In theatre, we teach about the importance of health for actors” said Brown. “You can’t be sick if you have to do a show, and biking is a great way to stay healthy.”

Maureen has been biking to campus since 1991; Rich started biking in Eugene, OR and continued when he arrived at Western. Both bike to campus every day, regardless of wind and rain, and take the bus or walk only when roads are icy. “I’ve been biking since before there were bike lanes” says O’Reilly with a grin.

Scholarship recipients are selected based on three criteria (1) number of “petroleum free” trips to campus logged at www.whatcomsmarttrips.org ; (2) dedication to the Theatre department – leadership, roles played, designs realized, scripts produced, etc. and (3) GPA. The scholarship has benefitted four theatre students so far. In the first year, three students received RiMa Green awards – their combined distance bicycled exceeded 1500 miles!

To learn more about the benefits of active transportation, see www.whatcomsmartrips.org. By logging smart trips to work, school, errands and leisure, you can be eligible for discounts, cash prizes and other rewards.

Page Updated 07.26.2013