Start a New Club or Organization
Step 1: Getting Started
- Have you completed at least one semester at Ouachita?
- Do you have at least two semesters left before you graduate?
- Is your organization unique?
- Are there at least 10 students already interested in your organization?
If you answered yes to all of the above, you have already completed Step 1.
Thank you for your interest in starting a new student organization! This process requires time and dedication, but it will be worthwhile. The Office of Student Life is here to help you every step of the way!
Step 2: Getting Your Paperwork Together
- The Roster: You will need a roster of at least 10 interested students. The roster should have the printed name, signature, and the Ouachita ID numbers of current Ouachita Baptist University students interested in joining your organization.
- The Sponsor Letter: You must have an on-campus advisor that is a full-time faculty or staff member. They will write a letter stating that they are willing to be the advisor for your organization, and they must physically sign it.
- The Constitution: The Constitution is an important document, so you want to spend some on it. Consider using this sample constitution as a starting point.
- The Petition: Tell us why you want to start a new organization, and how this new organization will contribute to campus life.
Step 3: Fill Out Interest Form
Now that you’re serious about starting your new organization let’s prepare to pitch your idea.
- Register your new organization below.
- Fill out the basic information about your organization.
- Finish filling out your organization’s profile (this will include uploading your Constitution, roster, and sponsor agreement form. Do this from a computer, not your cell phone! We do recommend that you upload your constitution as a Word document.).
- In your registration, you will discuss how your organization is unique from those already existing, why you want to start a new organization, and how much of a commitment you are willing to contribute to the process. It is important to understand the responsibility of what it means to start up a new organization.
- After proposing your new organization’s idea in the interest packet, the Director of Student Student Life will determine how ready you are to move forward. You will be contacted if you have been approved to reserve a pitch time to present your organization to the committee.
New organization interest forms and paperwork must be submitted by Oct. 31 in the fall semester and March 31 in the spring semester of each year.
Step 4: Meeting with Staff Members
You will meet with members of the Office of Student Life to review your constitution and answer any questions you have. Please bring a laptop with the constitution on it to the meeting so that you can make notes and changes with the staff member. Also, please bring a copy of your national organization’s by-laws or constitution (if applicable).
Step 5: The Pitch
The Student Life Committee meets as needed each semester. Depending on when you are approved for this next step, you will be able to schedule a “pitch” time for one of these meeting dates. You will be allotted five minutes to present your organization proposal. Following your presentation, the committee will take about five minutes to ask you questions. The pitch presentation will not last more than 10 minutes and all you need to bring is your enthusiasm!
Some questions you should be able to answer:
- What sets your organization apart from other organizations at Ouachita?
- What is the purpose and mission of your organization?
- How would Ouachita students benefit from your organization?
What kind of events/activities are you planning to produce?
Step 6: The Results
So, you have presented. Are you an organization yet? Not quite, but very close!
After your presentation, you will be contacted by the Office of Student Life and notified of the committee’s decision. Here are the different outcomes:
Approved: Congratulations! Your packet will be forwarded for signatures!
Sidelined: Additional clarification is needed before you can proceed to the next step. This is often the case when something goes against University policy, a similar group already exists on campus, or more questions need to be answered.
Step 7: Decision Time
You’re received approval from the Student Life Committee. An abbreviated summary of your proposal and your constitution will be sent off for University approval. This is a time of waiting.
Step 8: Orientation
All new organizations will attend a brief orientation session with the Office of Student Life. At this session, you will receive all of the necessary information and resources in order to successfully run your new organization. Prior to this step, you will be granted the opportunity to reserve meeting space on campus for a maximum of three organization meetings before you receive final approval. The president, treasurer, and advisor of your organization MUST be present at your orientation.
Step 9: Celebrate
Once you receive a letter from the Office of Student Life, you are now officially a student organization at Ouachita Baptist University. You are eligible for all rights and privileges that come with responsibilities on your part to abide by all University policies and to do everything in your power to represent Ouachita Baptist University and the organization in a positive light. Congratulations!