WRITTEN BY: GREG VAN BUSKIRK
Drivers and Motorcyclists rejoice: we’ve found the place for you.
Transfer student Thomas Joyce came to Temple University this fall and brought his Suzuki Jigster 600 with him. Looking to get more involved on campus, Joyce went searching for clubs and student organizations to join. To his surprise, he found that no student organization for motor vehicle fanatics existed. So he took matters into his own hands and founded The Motor Vehicle Association of Temple University.
“It started by me looking for a club to join just to get a little more involved, at least in the social aspect of Temple,” Joyce said. “And I realized there really wasn’t an outlet for people who have a passion for cars and motorcycles.”
As innovative and exciting as the Motor Vehicle Association is shaping up to be, getting started was no simple task. Every student organization requires an advisor who is a full-time faculty member at the university. For Joyce, finding that advisor was the trickiest part yet.
“I had a lot of difficulty finding a faculty or administrator advisor. I reached out to several teachers and didn’t have success because they’re busy,” Joyce recalled. “But the senior director of the Howard Gittis Student Center [Jason Levy] reached out to me and asked if we were still looking for an advisor because he rides motorcycles and rides to work almost every day.”
The Motor Vehicle Association is now one of over 300 student organizations at Temple University. According to the 2013 Temple University Transportation Survey Sustainability Audit Report, 31.5% of commuters to Temple use “a single occupancy vehicle” to get to campus. Based on that percentage alone, the MVA should have no problem finding a target audience although non-commuters and non-owners of vehicles are also allowed to join. Joyce hopes that his organization can appeal to students in multiple aspects, including socialization, charity, and safety awareness.
“I primarily would like it to be a social outlet for people to meet once or twice a month to socialize and hang out,” Joyce explained. “I’d like to organize some things like workshops on taking road trips, like what to bring with you, what to leave at home, and what to do in an emergency. I also would like to have some charity fundraising events for charities revolving around road safety.”
As the MVA picks up steam, Joyce is hopeful that the organization will grow into a well-oiled machine.
“This year, since we’re a new club, I’ve decided that membership will be essentially free,” Joyce was happy to report. “Anyone who has an interest in vehicles is welcome and encouraged to join. We’ve gotten some contacts of interest, but it’s a process.
Joyce explained that he is also looking for anyone interested in being a member of the executive board for the Motor Vehicle Association in addition to casual members.
The MVA is just one example of the many appealing organizations sprouting up around campus each year for students to get involved in.