Photo: iStockphoto

Ripon College, a private liberal-arts school in Wisconsin, has launched a program to give new bikes to first-year students who pledge not to bring their cars to campus for the year. Prompted by concerns that the school might have to expand parking lots into green space if the growing student population keeps driving to (and parking at) school, Ripon decided to take the unconventional approach instead. The school hopes a few hundred of this year’s new students will agree to the deal, especially those who were originally planning on driving. Administrators have high hopes. “We’re trying to change the culture,” said Ripon President David Joyce. “I figure it’s easier to bribe people than to punish them.” Students who take the bribe will get a free Trek 820 mountain bike, complete with lock and helmet. Students, you will be tested on this. (Psst, this is the test! Don’t fail it.)

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