EAST LANSING, MI (BRAIN)—Navigating Michigan State University’s 5,200-acre campus just became quicker—and healthier—thanks to the university’s new partnership with Fuji Bicycles, designed to foster environmental stewardship and healthy habits.
MSU is the only university in the Midwest—and one of five in the nation—to participate in Fuji University, a program that allows students, faculty and staff to purchase new Fuji bikes on campus at competitive prices. In addition, MSU is only one of five universities in the country to have a university owned and operated bike shop.
An umbrella program of Fuji Bicycles, Fuji University sells college bike shops new bikes at reduced prices. In turn, bike shops extend lower prices to customers to make cycling more appealing.
“MSU is at the forefront of university bike programs,” said Tim Potter, manager of MSU Bikes Service Center. “This program will help reduce the need for vehicles and help our efforts to reduce carbon emissions and parking congestion— all while reducing mental stress.”
Since officially launching the program in early September, MSU Bikes has sold more than 60 Fuji bikes. And these are not “department-store” bikes, Potter said. Rather, they’re high-quality bikes that will last.
New or used, there is a huge demand for bikes on campus, Potter said. Until now, MSU Bikes only rented or sold used bikes that had been repaired by staff. The shop has handled about 300 to 400 repairs per year.
MSU Bikes’ mechanics spend two to six hours preparing each used bike for rent or sale. So demand frequently exceeded supply. As a result, customers often found no available bikes to rent or purchase.
But now, Potter hopes to better meet the bike demand— especially from frantic parents looking to secure bikes for their students in the fall when there simply aren’t enough bikes.
“For today’s environmentally concerned students, biking is a lifestyle,” said Roy Hough, national sales manager for Advanced Sports Inc. and Fuji. “So we’re honored that we can be on campus, enhancing the academic experience and making a difference every day.
“Fuji U is about growing the bike industry and raising awareness of the cycling culture so people see how great cycling on a campus can be," he added.