Update: Spring registrations are in progress. If interested in starting a new Org, get in touch with us to plan for a Fall start.
Creating a new Registered Student Organization is not difficult, but it does take time and energy. There are many great ideas for new student organizations, and the Office of Student Programs is here to help you turn them into reality. While the actual process of registering a new group is straight forward, to ensure that students have an understanding of all their community expectations and resources available to them, the process cannot be rushed. Registration is merely an administrative task involved in recognizing the founding of a new community on campus.
Students interested in forming a new organization need to establish a clear goal of what they hope their organization will become. Setting up a meeting with the Assistant Director of Student Programs, Erin Mosher, will help you gather your thoughts and ensure your success*. There is a need to discuss the mission and objectives of the proposed group (goals), the number of students interested, the resources available, and a determination that the interest and needs of the proposed group are not already being met by an existing campus organization. An action plan needs to be proposed on how a new group will spend it's first semester cultivating their leadership, establishing group guidelines, and fine-tuning their mission/purpose.
Students well-prepared for a new org meeting will have:
- A name for the new org and mission statement idea, crafted, and prepared for feedback
- A list of current members
- A list of group goals for the semester/year
- An action-plan for new member recruitment, leadership transition, possible finance and fundraising ideas, and ideas for events
A new org should have at least 10 people interested in active participation before registering. This is to ensure success, based on resources and student involvement. After the preliminary meeting and authorization, new groups must complete the online Organization Registration forms for the Office of Student Programs. Registration gives access to the privileges of registered student organizations on campus (SGA funding, event coordination, room reservation, tabling and banner space, etc). While creating a new student organization in order to participate in a Student Org fair and/or to apply for SGA funding are wonderful benefits, they should not be the sole reason for registration, nor can the process of creating a new org be rushed to seek participation.
* New org ideas may be brainstormed during a meeting with the Assistant Director, however students are welcome to gather ideas, possible group members, and draft a mission statement prior to arranging an appointment.
Club Sports and Recreation Organizations
While club sports and movement & recreation organizations are registered through the Office of Student Programs, club sports are dually administered through the Department of Physical Education and Athletics, and supervised by Amie Canfield. The planning for creating such organizations is often more intensive than other groups, and Mount Holyoke encourages students to adhere and follow the regulations of any national affiliate groups and charters. Students should come to Student Programs to discuss their ideas and if we feel it meets the criteria of the risk level of a club sport we will connect them with athletics for further support.
For clarification, here are some of the basic differences between a recreation organization and a club sport:
- Club sports are intercollegiately competitive. They practice and require coaches, whom are paid from SGA funds and a staff member of the college. These groups require greater administrative oversight and risk management.
- Dance, movement & recreation organizations do not compete on the collegiate level, and require little-to-no practice. Coaches are not provided.