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Should I start a University motorcycle club

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by Endo C, Jul 6, 2015.

  1. Yes

    33 vote(s)
  2. No

    13 vote(s)
  1. I was having a discussion on the weekend with another student at my university that deals with the clubs and societies branch. She was telling me that the amount of money a club receives to fund the member's hobbies is quite lucrative. Basically you could start a cooking club with your friends and receive money to promote cooking on campus and the expenses would be covered by the university.

    I then had a thought... Why not start a motorcycle club on campus and use the funds provided by the university to promote motorcycling. What are people's thoughts on this and do you foresee any issues that I might run into if I do proceed to start this club?
    • Like Like x 1
  2. My friends and I managed to scrape together enough signatures to start a generic social club. All we did was have a BBQ and get tipsy every few weeks, subsidised by the uni's money (well, the student union's).

    I'm sure the rules are more stringently enforced nowadays (especially re money and governance), so you'd have to stay on top of that. Your biggest obstacle might well be apathy - I and most uni student motorcyclists I knew were mainly 'utility' motorcyclists. Between study and work and social lives, we weren't really interested in motorcycling issues beyond making sure we had enough parking and didn't have to pay for it.
    • Like Like x 3
  3. Motorcycling is a common University form of transport so you have a good source of members. In running any club there is a burden of administration. Recruitment, ride organisation, the reporting requirements on where the money is going etc.

    Start small, post up a weekend ride perhaps and see what response you get. Good Luck. (y)
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  4. If you have the time and the inclination, then why not? Was Secretary/Vice-President/President of the Melb Uni Cycling Club at various stages... I found that working with Uni students was a bit hit and miss. Uni students are generally pretty poor overall, aren't always reliable in terms of unpaid work/volunteering and are generally in it for themselves. That said, I have many good close friends from my days at Uni. I look back very fondly on many good social events, races, tours, training camps and stories from the pubs on campus. :)

    The most successful clubs have a long history and continuously promote themselves and are actively involved in events, and often have alumni come back into the fold. Some of the difficulties were in liaising with University Staff, in terms of what they wanted from the club versus what we wanted as students. Also if you want to do something relating to the motorcycles on campus, you will likely need to have some form of insurance (to be paid by membership monies) and this is where it gets exxy. You will need to have the interest to have a club larger than a small group of mates... Think about what you want the club to do on a regular basis, and what you want to achieve with it (promotion of motorcycling is one thing, but what else?)

    All the best with it - love to hear how it goes.
    • Like Like x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
  5. check what insurance cover you may need if you actually take the bikes and go on a "club run".. or if the uni covers public liability insurance for you
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. UMSU | How to Affiliate a Club

    at least for Melbourne uni.. (but you probably still need to see if the insurance covers motorcycles)

    Reasons to start a club are vast and varied; it may be as simple as contributing to the University community, meeting like-minded people or to receive funding from UMSU for events. Some of the benefits of affiliation to UMSU include:

    • representation and support from the UMSU C&S department
    • financial grants
    • free or discounted use of UMSU and University facilities and resources
    • participation in the UMSU C&S promotional expos
    • discounted training in Safe Food Handling and Responsible Service of Alcohol
    • public liability insurance cover
    • Informative Informative x 1
  7. I belong to a couple of groups run through facebook, no committee meetings or memberships, works well, turn up if you want or not.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Sounds like a great idea :) uni students are the future so building any positive vibes is awesome. I would set up a social meetup rather than organised rides ... Thursday pizza night or something along those lines ...
    Promote the social aspects, the financial benefits of low cost commuting, and the minimisation of carbon footprint and you will be on a winner =D
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Thanks everyone for the informative posts. It's a long process but I'll let you all know if this gets approved by my uni. I think their main concern is of course safety (on-campus) and will find out what insurances they have and what they cover.

    Basically its to promote the benefits of riding (car parking is expensive and rarely available, reduced emissions and costs plus its fun). I think there are plenty of organised rides already on Netrider so might just ask the organisers if we are able to tag along and then pay for everyone's lunch as kickbacks=D. All in my head at this point.
    • Like Like x 1
  10. what uni?

    I would definitely join something like that
  11. I voted no. But only because I know how much work can be involved in running even a small group. It can be demoralising. But when it works well it's very rewarding.

    If you decide to do it, try and keep it as informal as possible. You'll need to check with your Uni whether you need officer bearers etc. I'm only guessing but I'd say you will. Then you need to get people to put their hands up to do those jobs, and you need to make sure they are capable of doing the job, particularly if you are dealing with other peoples money.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. Im curious as to the insurance side of things if people crash and potentially get killed on a university endorsed club ride... If they let you, I say go for it, but as an event organiser I would assume you'd be the one to blame if something goes wrong.
  13. Thanks I am literally looking for specific and valid reasons why I shouldn't start one. I need to find at least 10 students to join, and 3 people who want to put in effort to run it, write up a bunch of documents and forms and see if it gets approved (pending the danger aspect which they said they would discuss with me).

    SydMurse - That's my biggest fear. What to do when someone crashes/left behind?
  14. talk to office holders of other clubs. The questions you are asking will have been answered by many of them already. SCUBA, flying, even horseriding all have the same issues
  15. A few years ago I was VP then President of a local small bike group (the club has subsequently wound up) and decided to get some legal advice re my personal exposure.

    The advice was basically

    If we or I organised a ride it wouldn't stop someone from suing me personally, even though we were an incorporated body and even if we'd had public liability insurance.

    The outcome of any court case would greatly depend on the individual circumstances and whether or not I/we had done everything reasonably possible to prevent the incident from happening.

    His advice was to not actually organise rides, and certainly never invite non-members. Rather organise and advertise weekly/monthly meets for breakfast at a local cafe/pub/restaurant. He explained that if someone said "I'm thinking of heading to Tumut, then maybe Cabramurra and back home through Tumbarumba. I reckon if I left at 9:00 I'd make Cabramurra for lunch easy and be back at the Kooringal for a few beers by 4". Then you haven't organised a ride and if people happen to come along then so be it.

    He made it abundantly clear that we most definitely should not have designated lead riders, tail end riders, corner markers or any sort of 'ride rules' because then we are admitting responsibility for the conduct of all riders and pillions and can be sued by any one attending the ride or even anyone negatively impacted by the ride. Without naming names he told me about a car group he'd heard off that had been sued by a parents group for making too much noise as they went through a small town. While it didn't make it to court, the police had gotten involved and every time the group met the police were there doing registration, licence and roadworthy checks.

    In short - if you organise a ride you run the risk of someone suing you end of story. It's all about risk management. Frankly I wasn't prepared to take the risk so we stopped organising rides, but made sure we had public liability insurance and officer bearers/organisers insurance for the couple of big(er) events we held like our annual rally.

    Edit: I strongly advise anyone who is going to organise rides, either on here are elsewhere to get legal advice prior to doing so.
    • Winner Winner x 1