University of Michigan Taekwondo Club

Epilogue: Present and Future
of the University of Michigan Taekwondo Club

The University of Michigan Taekwondo Club is the oldest, and arguably most successful, martial arts club on the University of Michigan campus. It can boast more alums and an Olympic medalist. The source of this success has been the strong Club members, combined with the constant support of its instructors, particularly Grand Master Chong, Grand Master Lloyd, and Master Bissoon-Dath and alumni, who have formed a base that current Club members can build upon. Other clubs have lacked this, and many have either folded after the founder left or required regular support from an outside school. Many students have earned their black belts. Others have come as black belts and continued their training.

50th anniversary banquet reunion of the University of Michigan Taekwondo Club in 2014 50th anniversary banquet reunion of the University of Michigan Taekwondo Club in 2014

Equally impressive are the accomplishments of the Club alumni after they have graduated. Among its alumni, Club can count many successful doctors, lawyers, scientists, engineers, and business leaders. Grand Master Han Lee now runs a very successful chain of Taekwondo schools in Colorado.

One of the great lessons that many Club members have learned is the value of a true student-teacher relationship. While the Club has supported Grand Master Chong for many years, he in turn has supported the Club and made many sacrifices. Master Chong could have made more money by opening private schools. He has also turned down lucrative offers from friends to teach at schools outside the area. Grand Master Chong’s peers stopped teaching classes many years ago, while he continues to teach on a regular basis.

Recently awarded his Tenth Dan, Grand Master Chong is one of the top Taekwondo masters in the country. He recently served on the executive council of the World Taekwondo Federation and is now on the Kukkiwon Advisory Board.

The future holds some interesting questions for the Club. The model which existed for over 30 years has changed. From 1970 through 2002, the Club was lead by students of Grand Master Chong. While Master Busch continues to support and instruct the Club, the large majority of the Club's black belts and instructors did not earn their black belts from Grand Master Chong. The link between the Club and Grand Master Chong is now much weaker. The upcoming decade will see further changes and evolution.

Source: "A History of the University of Michigan Taekwondo Club" by Master Steve Busch with contributions from Mr. James Young, Master Joseph Lloyd and Mr. Naji Husseini, January 2, 2006 Rev. July 4, 2013