We’re at a school where student organizations do incredible things. We salute every student who has been involved in bringing about some of the terrific events that take place on our campus each year. Andrea and I believe we all want the same success for our organizations.
Yet Andrea, Kirk, and I recognize that sometimes, some organizations fall through the cracks. Fiscal mismanagement, ineffective leadership, and poor member retention are direct results of environments where expectations for student organizations and student leaders are not immediately clear.
We need minimum standards that do not change from one organization to another. Financial accountability and strong leadership are valuable to all organizations. We want an environment where students may easily and effectively enter student organizations. For this to happen, we need to help organizations reach their full potential.
We’re advocating two new initatives: modifications of the existing Committee on Student Organizations (CoSO) and the creation of a new Financial Advisory Board.
Working with the current CoSO chair, Franklin Williams, we’d like to devise a system that helps student organizations understand what is expected from them. From a well-constructed constitution to an updated OrgTracker entry, this system would identify areas of excellence while noting areas that need improvement.
With this knowledge, CoSO, student government, and Student Activities would be able to help student groups improve because we would know exactly what expectations are not being met.
Serving under the VP of Finance, the Financial Advisory Board would regularly review the finances of student organizations to ensure that their spending is in line with the JFC budget. The board would work with student leaders to provide advice on how to more effectively monitor and track spending. The board would help foster more financially savvy organizations by educating treasurers and presidents about all potential funding sources.
The Financial Advisory Board would help student leaders, student organizations, and student government by creating an environment where budgets are more honest, accounting is more standardized, and the student activities fee is optimally distributed.
By defining expectations and helping organizations meet minimum standards, we can make it possible for all students to take ownership of this University.