Journalism junior Jessica Diaz said she had never heard of the Off-Campus Mavericks Association, and was curious about what they do for commuter students.
“I haven’t seen them advertise on campus before. It is my first semester here, and I am a commuter. It can be hard to keep up with what is going on,” Diaz said.
The Off-Campus Mavericks Association is an organization dedicated to helping commuter students adjust to their time at UTA. Their events focus on getting students connected with other people on campus.
They accomplish this task by offering free food through the Commuter Lunch Series offered each semester.
“The goal of our organization is to get commuters to become a part of campus, and the best way we have done that in the past is though our Commuter Lunch Series,” said David Duvall, director for Off-Campus Mavericks and New Maverick Orientation.
The Commuter Lunch Series is a service offered by Off-Campus Mavericks to students as not only a free lunch, but as a place that commuters can discuss the problems that they have to deal with on a daily basis. The series also serves as a way to get students to learn about what Off-Campus Mavericks has to offer. Their first event in the series this semester will be on Wednesday on the Maverick Activities Center second floor. Students will get free pizza and will be able to discuss issues about commuting to campus.
However, like Jessica Diaz, there are some students who still have a difficult time knowing when these events geared toward commuters are happening.
In the case of Marci Bridgman, a civil engineering senior who commutes from Fort Worth, living far away can be distracting from anything going on around campus.
“I have to plan my whole day around what time I have school because of the time I am gone from home, which includes packing a quick lunch, among other things,” Bridgman said. “I haven’t seen Off-Campus Mavericks food events just because I don’t have the time to walk around campus on a normal day.”
Business sophomore Batul Aboukar said that the events should be more frequent to help reach other students.
“I have used the commuter breakfast before, but it seems like they only do it once or twice a semester. If the free breakfasts were more frequent, I think people would know more about Off-Campus Mavericks,” Aboukar said.
Duvall said these are exactly the students they try to reach each semester by offering free coffee on Mondays in the MAC and through the most popular event, Commuter Appreciation Breakfast, which is setup in Lot 47 across from Pickard Hall.
“We are also redoubling our efforts to contact students on Facebook and Twitter, so I think we will have a great response from off-campus students this semester,” Duvall said.