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Student Org Recognition



University Recognition for New Student Organization Application

Co-curricular involvement is a vital part of the overall collegiate student experience.  It provides students the opportunity to apply what they are learning inside the classroom to their lives outside of the class.  Co-curricular involvement enhances student learning and cognitive, psychosocial, moral and ethical development.  Students develop greater self-knowledge of their talents and strengths as well as improving their leadership competence and the capacity to mobilize themselves and others to serve and work collaboratively.  This involvement through student activities prepares students for personal and professional success beyond graduation. We affirm the choice of our students to be involved in the campus community, and student organizations provide an important avenue to engage in the co-curricular experience.

Student Organization Defined

A student organization is a group of currently-enrolled Belmont University students who form together for a common purpose, for which they do not receive academic credit. Any group of students which meets regularly, elects or appoints officers, collects dues, conducts a program or in any other way consistently functions as an organization is required to seek university recognition through the Office of Student Activities.

If an organization has a relationship with an outside or inter/national entity the policies and procedures of Belmont will supersede any of the outside affiliation. In no way do the goals, values, or events of an individual student organization represent those of the entire Belmont community.

University Recognition

When a group of students meets the definition of a student organization, it is required to apply for formal recognition by Belmont University. Recognition provides Belmont University the opportunity to extend resources and support to student organizations and to manage opportunities to enhance the student experience, enrich the campus community, and advance the mission and vision of the university. After receiving University recognition, student organization must remain in good standing and must annually renew their recognition status. Failure to annually renew recognition status will result in the organization being placed on inactive status.  For more information regarding maintaining University Recognition please refer to the Student Organization Handbook. All recognized student organizations must comply with University policies and procedures. These policies and procedures are found in, but not limited to, The Bruin Guide, the Student Organization Handbook, and the Office of Student Activities.

Student Organization Classifications

The Office of Student Activities utilizes a classification system to clarify privileges, responsibilities, governance and the legal relationship between recognized student organizations and Belmont University. Organizations fit into one of the four particular classifications by fulfilling every aspect of the definition for that classification. 

The University conveys certain privileges to every student organization it recognizes including:

Student Organization Privileges and Responsibilities
All student organizations receive general privileges as a result of their recognition status.  General privileges applicable to every organization include:

  • Inclusion in student organization campus publications
  • Reservation and use of university facilities
  • Scheduling and promotion of events on the on-line university calendar
  • Marketing and publicity of events through on-campus postings and promotions
  • Participation in the annual BruinLink Fair
  • Exemption from state sales tax when paying for organizational goods with university funds

Additionally, student organizations have general responsibilities associated with existing as a recognized Belmont University student organization.  General responsibilities applicable to every organization include:

  • Participate in annual student organization training
  • Register organization annually
  • Register all campus-wide events through the on-line university calendar
  • Register Closed/High Risk/Off Campus events
  • Abide by all University and Office of Student Activities policies and procedures

In addition to these general Privileges and Responsibilities of Recognition, other privileges and responsibilities are applicable to some recognized organizations based on their specific classification.  Detailed information regarding these classifications can be found in the Student Organization Handbook.

Recognized Student Organization General Privileges:

  • Inclusion in student organization campus publications
  • Reservation and use of university facilities
  • Scheduling and promotion of events on the on-line university calendar
  • Marketing and publicity of events through on-campus postings and promotions
  • Participation in the annual BruinLink Fair
  • Exemption from state sales tax when paying for organizational goods with university funds
  • Organization page and use of all functions within BruinLink
Classifications of Recognized Student Organizations:

1. CHARTERED ORGANIZATION Definition:

Purpose:  Created by the university to directly support and enhance the mission of Belmont University. Considered a direct extension of the University, chartered organizations principally exist to serve or represent the campus community. They provide significant contributions and programming to the campus community.

Advisor:  A professional staff member from the Office of Student Activities serves as the advisor as a part of his/her official job description.

Funding:  Provided through the Division of Student Affairs.

Chartered Organization responsibilities:

  • Attend monthly Presidents’ Council meetings
  • Individual members maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5
  • Meet regularly with advisor
  • Provide Annual Report, including fiscal details, to the Office of Student Activities
  • Manage budget in accordance with Belmont’s financial policies and procedures
  • Participate in annual Leadership trainings
  • Register organization annually
  • Serve on other departmental/university committees as assigned
  • Participate in monthly Chartered Organization meetings Anticipate driving personal vehicle for Belmont business
  • Register all organizational programming, both on and off campus, with the Office of Student Activities through BruinLink
  • Abide by all University and Office of Student Activities policies and procedures

Chartered Organizations additional privileges:

  • Use of the Belmont University Name & Logo
  • Use of a University watermark
  • Receive official organization email on the Belmont server
  • Serve on University committees
  • Serve as University student leadership liaison
  • Provided space in the Beaman Student Life Center
  • Access to complimentary design services from the Office of Communications
  • Receive Belmont Business Cards
  • Receive University name tags
  • Tax exempt status

2.    AFFILIATED ORGANIZATION Definition:

Purpose: Created by department or group of students to assist a department or program in achieving their institutional objectives. Sports Clubs and Faith Development Organizations are considered Affiliated organizations because of their departmental, college or school relationship.

Advisor: A full time faculty or staff Advisor is required for all Affiliated organizations.

Funding: Financial and resource support from department or program that they assist provided based on departmental discretion.

Affiliated Organization responsibilities:

  • Attend monthly Presidents’ Council meetings
  • Individual members maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0
  • Meet regularly with advisor(s)
  • Advisors meet regularly with Office of Student Activities
  • Participate in required student organization trainings
  • Register organization annually
  • Anticipate driving personal vehicle for Belmont business
  • Register all organizational programming, both on and off campus, with the Office of Student Activities through BruinLink
  • Abide by all University and Office of Student Activities policies and procedures

Affiliated Organization additional privileges:

  • Use of the Belmont University Name & Logo
  • Receive official organization email on the Belmont server
  • Eligible for an on campus agency account
  • Eligible to petition Student Government Association for grant funding subject to the SGA
  • On-going leadership development opportunities provided by the Office of Student Activities

3.    REGISTERED ORGANIZATION Definition:

Purpose: Initiated by a community of students who share a common interest. Registered organizations are student-created and student-led.  Registered organizations are not legally tied to the university.

Advisor: Not required

Funding: Does not receive funding from the University.

Registered Organization responsibilities:

  • Attend monthly President’s Council meetings.  Required only if participating in the Student Government grant petition process
  • Individual members are not required to maintain a minimum GPA
  • Meeting regularly with advisor(s) is not required
  • Provide Annual Report to the Office of Student Activities is not required
  • Participate in annual student organization training
  • Register organization annually
  • Register all organizational programming, both on and off campus, with the Office of Student Activities through BruinLink
  • Abide by all University and Office of Student Activities policies and procedures

Registered Organization additional privileges:

  • Advising available by the Office of Student Activities 
  • Eligible for an on-campus agency account
  • Eligible to petition Student Government Association for grant funding subject to the SGA Grant Petition policies
  • On-going leadership development opportunities provided by the Office of Student Activities

4.    FRATERNITY/SORORITY:

Purpose: Fraternities and sororities are nationally-affiliated, selective, social, single sex chapters that uphold Christian principles and ideals.  Membership cannot be held in more than one Greek organization at the collegiate level and is determined based upon a mutual selection process.  
 
Advisor: A campus advisor is not required however each fraternity and sorority is required to have a primary chapter advisor who is endorsed by the national organization.

Funding: Does not receive funding from the University.

Fraternity/Sorority responsibilities:

  • Attend monthly Presidents’ Council meetings
  • Individuals members maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0
  • Meet regularly with advisor
  • Provide Annual Report, including fiscal details to the Office of Student Activities
  • Participate in  annual Leadership training
  • Register organization annually
  • Register all organizational programming, both on and off campus, with the Office of Student Activities through BruinLink
  • Chapters must remain in good standing with their national organization
  • Abide by all University and Office of Student Activities policies and procedures

Fraternity/Sorority additional privileges:

  • Receive official organization email on the Belmont server
  • Access to on-campus storage space
  • Access to on-campus common fraternity/sorority and meeting space
  • Eligible for an on-campus agency account
  • Eligible to petition Student Government Association for grant funding subject to the SGA Grant Petition policies
  • On-going leadership development opportunities provided by the Office of Student Activities
Recognition Process

The process for University Recognition starts with a consultation with the Office of Student Activities, typically with the Assistant Director of Student Activities, and the student(s) interested in starting a new organization.  This meeting provides an opportunity to dialogue about the intention of the organization, assures that there is not mission duplication with other existing organizations, addresses alignment with the university mission and provides support in navigating the recognition process.

After this consultation, prospective organizations are allowed to hold up to three (3) on-campus group meetings with expressed written permission from the Office of Student Activities.  The presiding officer will provide the Office of Student Activities with the date, time and location for each of the three meetings.  No official activities or events may be sponsored until a group has received official university recognition.  Under no circumstance may an organization going through the recognition process use the Belmont University name or logo.

In order to assure consistent training and education for all student organizations, the University considers new organization request for recognition twice a year. All applications must be submitted by the fourth Friday of classes after the start of the term to the Office of Student Activities.

The following steps are required after the consultation with the Office of Student Activities in order to apply for University Recognition:

  • University Recognition Request Form: Complete on-line form in its entirety
  • Governing Documents: Provide an electronic copy of the proposed organization’s bylaws, constitution, and any other defining or governing documents. (Sample bylaws and constitution are provided at the informational meeting.)
  • Leadership: Identify organization officers including their email addresses, BUID #’s, and phone numbers. Each student organization must have a Presiding Officer (e.g. president, director, chair, etc), a Vice President, an Event Services Contact, and a Financial Officer.  Other suggested positions include, secretary, and historian.
  • Organization Rationale: Provide a one page rationale that outlines how the organization’s mission and activity will:
    • Be congruent with Belmont’s Mission, Vision and Values
    • Represent a contribution to the existing campus life and the overall student experience
    • Demonstrate how organizational activity will support an environment of inclusiveness and develop community.
  • Membership: Provide an electronic list of prospective members that have expressed a commitment to join the organization if it is institutionally recognized. Belmont insists that there is enough interest from students that will sustain the organization beyond its initial founders.
  • Advisor: Provide contact information for the proposed organization faculty/staff advisor. All Belmont faculty and staff members are eligible to serve as advisors of recognized organizations. Please refer to the Student Organization Classifications document to determine if an advisor is recommended or required for your student organization.
  • Classification: Review the Student Organization Classifications for information for a detailed description of each classification and their privileges and responsibilities.  Provide the Office of Student Activities with a recommendation for classification status that best fits the purpose and description of the anticipated organization. Any organization requesting Affiliated status must provide, in writing, confirmation from a University representative from the respective department/college that the organization would be affiliating with.
Final Approval Process

Upon submission of the completed Student Organization Application for University Recognition the Office of Student Activities reviews all provided documents in order to ensure:

  • Completion of all required forms
  • Consonance with University Mission
  • Contribution to Campus Life
  • Demonstrated commitment to developing community


For organizations satisfying the initial review, Student Activities will present the application to
the Student Life Council, a committee of the Faculty Senate comprised of faculty, staff and students, for review and possible recommendations regarding the purpose and activity of the organization relative to the university’s Mission and Community Commitments.

Finally, the Office of Student Activities considers Student Life Council recommendations and
conveys or denies university recognition.  Organization Presidents and Advisors, will be notified via email.

Newly-recognized student organizations must participate in the New Student Organization Orientation & Training Session led by the Office of Student Activities. No organizational activity may occur prior to completion of this orientation and training.

End Notes:
  1. Kuh, George. (2009, November/December). What Student Affairs Professionals Need to know about Student Engagement. Journal of College Student Development, Volume 50, Number 6.
  2. Astin, Helen & Astin, Alexander. (1996). The Social Change Model of Leadership Development Guidebook Version III. Los Angeles: Higher Education Research Institute


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