How to Start Your Own Student Organization


Photo by Sadie Hernandez via Flickr Creative Commons

Creating new student organizations for anything from Pokemon Go to political affiliations can give students of similar interests a rewarding sense of community.

Isabella Garcia, Staff Reporter

If a student has ever wanted to join a Pokemon Go club, but realized that that club doesn’t exist – there’s nothing stopping them from starting one. On Sept. 29 from 5-7 p.m. in the Rayburn Student Center Conference Room A, there will be a New Student Organization Workshop. This event will be an opportunity for students who are curious about starting up their own organization or improving one that is currently running.

Jeremy Sippel, the assistant director for SGA and student organizations, as well as Skyler Lang, will be in charge of informing and motivating any students with ambitions of introducing their own organization but don’t know where to start.

“We’ll be discussing the specific process of starting your own organization; so having your constitution, doing registration through ManeSync, possible [sources of] funding for startup organizations, and what the probationary period is about,” Sippel said.

A student organization is not required to pay dues to any department at the university, so whether or not officers choose to have their incoming members pay a fine is up to them to decide. The probationary period is a 6-month time frame where the organization can build themselves and the university really assesses them to check that they’re being a purposeful group. In some cases where an organization that was once active has since become dormant, the registration process can be slightly different, where they have to do is reactive the ManeSync portal and update the information.

Essential information to know before starting up a student organization is having an advisor, a full time faculty or staff member, at least 5 other students who are interested in that same theme, and checking that there isn’t already an organization with a similar purpose. This prevents students from duplicating any organizations that might target the same audience.

To find all the student organizations that are currently in action on campus, a student can look on the\studentorganizations website or go through their MyLeo and log into ManeSync. There are eight categories that an organization can be placed in: academic, cultural, political, fraternity and sororities, religious, community service, sports and recreation, and special interests.

Other than the planning that goes into starting up a new organization, they will also be discussing the perks of becoming more involved. Being a member of a student organization comes with a lot of responsibilities, but opens up a copious amount of possibilities that would have been harder to achieve otherwise.

“Also, we’ll be talking about the benefits of being in a student organization, because sometimes students don’t know if they want to be involved or not since it can be time consuming,” Sippel said “There’s a lot of leadership development and personal growth that can happen, being a part of a student organization can help with getting experience, can help you with your major and also getting a future job with an employer.”

It is important to think about the reasons why a student would want to start an organization, and the actions they would take in order for it to continue to stay active.  A student organization can be registered anytime throughout the entire academic year, as long as they follow the process. Being a member of a student organization can help you build connections and get involved with various events. A founding member of an organization leaves a special mark at the university that is proof of their accomplishments and handiwork.  For extra information or questions, Jeremy Sippel and his assistant Brandon Palmar can be found in the SIS room on the second floor of the Student Center.