By Maddie Fetchiet
Joel Ruffin Jr., founder of the organization People Who Do Stuff, is a go-getter.
As of March 14, 2012, the organization was officially recognized as a registered student organization at Michigan State University.
On a campus of nearly 50,000 students the significance of the individual often gets lost in the masses, but Ruffin Jr. was determined to make the power of the each and every Spartan felt at MSU.
“People Who Do Stuff is an organization that realizes the power of the individual, and recognizes the ever-growing demand for the individual to exercise that inherent autonomy of power for the creation of programs and resources that will help develop and advance their community,” Ruffin Jr. said. “We strive to empower the individual to become the change they wish to see in the world.”
The organization serves as a platform that connects people to resources that can help them make a difference in their communities. Ruffin Jr. calls it “an organization that will move and change the world.”
Through the efforts of Ruffin. Jr. along with faculty and staff at MSU, People Who Do Stuff hopes to gain local, nation and possibly international attention as the organization grows. MSU students, state administration and MSU faculty have contributed to building and co-founding the organization, according to Ruffin Jr.
Ruffin Jr. saw the need for People Who Do Stuff when he noticed how difficult it was for students to make a difference in their community without being a part of registered student organization. The organization seeks to provide the means for any student to start their own organization.
People Who Do Stuff provides space for programming, training in branding programs and leadership styles, and helps partner students with alumni and professionals that want to help students achieve their goals.
“We are an organization that gives the power back to the individual, we’ll do that with an inclusive community that will help support that individual’s goals and dreams as well,” Ruffin Jr. said.
As the economic hardships prevails, Ruffin Jr. reminds us how important it is to close the gap between Main Street and Wall Street. But he says when people are aware of the resources right in their own communities; the discrepancy between capitalism and democracy can be reconciled.
Ruffin Jr. sees People Who Do Stuff as a “new model of a community,” and with his entrepreneurial spirit, he hopes to see his organization team up with similar movements around the nation to become one giant resource for individuals striving to make a difference.
As Ruffin Jr. prepares for graduation this May, he hopes his organization will involve enough MSU and community members that his legacy will live on. The psychology senior plans to stay heavily involved with the development and expansion of People Who Do Stuff, with an ultimate goal of turning it into a non-profit organization. Ruffin believes with an innovative team of workers, he can help lead this organization to reach his goals.
“People Who Do Stuff is going to be huge because people who want to do stuff exist all over the world, and once we get together, there’s nothing we can’t do,” Ruffin Jr. Said.