2020 Club Opperations Report
In August of 2020, our Operations Committee welcomed 12 new liaisons to its team—six first-year students, three sophomores, two juniors, and one senior (four of whom were virtual!). Tasked with the goal of connecting virtual students with those meeting in person, I, VP Felton, quickly googled “BEST ICE BREAKERS OF 2020.” Fast forward through several rounds of scattergories, Kahoot, and name games, and the Operations Committee was ready to tackle the semester!
We began the fall semester focused on writing and implementing Operations guidelines. Nearly every other USG committee is structured around a set of guidelines, so we felt it of paramount importance to standardize our committee’s procedures. We restructured the new club process to allow for more touchpoints of support between applicants and Operations liaisons. Under this new process—which received approval in November 2020—club leaders must present to the entire committee before their liaison reviews their constitution. In these presentations, club leaders told our committee their intended purpose, what types of meetings and events they wanted to hold, and what, if any, funding they would require. All of these presentations have gone extremely well and give liaisons a chance to ask questions about the proposed club before constitution review. This format also allows club leaders to ask our committee questions about the new club process and, more generally, what active club status entails.
Following the presentation, an Operations liaison then works with the prospective club leader through constitution review. Any changes that are made to the constitution are voted upon by the entire committee (In every single meeting, we have voted on an item. And in every vote, there has been no disagreement. Either the liaisons are scared to oppose a motion, or my icebreakers worked so well that they are all beautifully on the same page!). Once the Operations liaison vote to approve an application, the prospective new club moves to the Assistant Dean for Student Involvement and. then the Dean of Students for further review. The final stage of approval remains the same: clubs must receive a vote of approval from the USG Senate before becoming an active club. Our goal in creating these guidelines was to keep most of the work within our committee so that the dean’s review can be as accessible, easy, and fast as possible.
Over the course of the semester, we received 13 new club applications. Two of these received full approval in the semester in which they submitted, and that is our goal moving forward: to see applicants through to approval within 1-2 semesters of application submission. In addition to those two clubs, four other clubs became active on campus in the fall. We have tons of clubs still working through the new club process and hope to push as many as possible on to approval in the spring. Our committee is currently reviewing six clubs. The Assistant Dean for Student Involvement, Dean Arcuri, is reviewing 10 clubs and the Dean of Students, Dean Rodgers, is reviewing 1. Additionally, one club is awaiting USG approval and will present to the Senate in February.
I am extremely proud of our liaisons for working so hard to help new club leaders during such an overwhelming semester. We have received lots of positive feedback from the leaders we have worked with this semester and look forward to seeing even more clubs receive approval in the spring.