It's easy to start a recognized student organization at MSUM! All that's needed to start the process is at least five interested MSUM students and a MSUM faculty or staff member willing to serve as the organization's advisor. You will then want to schedule a meeting with the Assistant Director of Leadership and Organizations in the Office of Student Activities (CMU 113) to go over the recognition process and get some helpful tips!
The 7-step recognition process is outlined below. The entire process can take about a month, depending on how fast one's constitution is submitted and the time of year as approval is required from Student Senate and the President of the University. It pays to be prepared and to keep in contact with the Office of Student Activities and the Assistant Director of Leadership and Organizations regarding your organization's status.
The good news is that once you submit the "Intent to Organize" form and it receives approval from the Assistant Director of Leadership and Organizations, your organization is granted certain privileges. Therefore, you can start actively recruiting new members, publicizing your organization, and reserving University facilities.
The first step to form a recognized student organization on the Minnesota State University Moorhead campus is to schedule a meeting with the Assistant Director of Leadership and Organizations in the Office of Student Activities (CMU 113) to talk about the organization that you want to form, its purpose, and to go over the recognition process.
Visit DragonCentral. Log-in with your Star ID and Star ID password, click the "Organizations" link at the top, and click "Register a New Organization" on the left side bar. This will take you to our Intent to Organize form, which you will want to complete and submit. This form will ask you for information including the name of the organization you want to start, its purpose statement, and the names and e-mails of at least five interested MSUM students and an MSUM faculty or staff member willing to serve as the organization's advisor. Completion of this online form and subsequent approval from the Office of Student Activities will grant pending status to groups awaiting formal recognition. This will give the pending organization the following privileges for 30 days:
Within 30 days of completing the "Intent to Organize" form, the pending organization will need to write and submit to the Assistant Director of Leadership and Organizations in the Office of Student Activities the organization's constitution for review. Submit using this DragonCentral form. Please see this sample constitution for an outline of required statements and areas that should be addressed when writing one's constitution.
The Assistant Director of Leadership and Organizations reviews the constitution for compliance with local, state, and federal laws and university policy. The Assistant Director will work with
you regarding any questions, concerns, or needed modifications that
arise from reading the submitted constitution. The Assistant Director then passes the constitution to Student Senate for their review and recommendation.
Student Senate reviews the request for recognition and forwards their written recommendation to the University President.
The President of the University confers formal recognition of the organization.
Official campus recognition is an honor and the pending student organizations assumes full responsibilities and privileges as an official recognized student organization. This is an organizational status and must be maintained each year. All recognized student organizations must re-register by the announced Fall Semester Deadline each academic year. Upon recognition, organizations have the following privileges:
Recognized student organizations assume
both privileges and responsibilities. In order to maintain recognition
status, all recognized student organizations must register by the Fall
Semester Deadline each year. Changes in officer or advisor status
should be reported to the Office of Student Activities when they occur.
Recognized student organizations failing
to register within this time period will become defunct, losing all
privileges of a recognized student organization at Minnesota State
University Moorhead. Defunct organizations are eligible to apply for
re-admission. The re-admission process for defunct student organization
will be the same process as for new organizations.
YES! A good constitution contains the basics of how your organization will function. A constitution is the foundation upon which the organization will grow, mature, and perpetuate itself. It is designed to reduce internal conflict, to establish the organization's mission and goals, and to protect the rights of all members and students of the University.
A constitution is a necessary tool for all organizations to have. It is essential to the future growth, development and is an integral part of the organization. A constitution clearly defines the purpose of your organization and outlines guidelines for officer positions as well as standing committees. It explains how organization business should be handled, how often business meetings are held, and the eligibility requirements for members and officers in the organization. Plus, it is required by the University for maintaining recognition as a student organization.
Constitutions are the framework of any organization. The details and explanations should be concise, easy-to-follow, and flexible enough to allow for change and growth. Every organization has its own unique style, but each must include the University required statements. A sample constitution is available on the OSA website. For constitution examples and for assistance in writing or making changes to a constitution, please contact the Office of Student Activities, CMU 113.
**Please note: If the organization is affiliated with another local, state, or national organization, a copy of that organization's constitution must also be provided. The rules and regulations of the affiliated organization’s
constitution shall be followed when not inconsistent with the rules and
regulations of Minnesota State University Moorhead. When inconsistencies are present, the
organization shall adhere to the rules and regulations of Minnesota State
Write your constitution in a broad manner, not limiting future leaders to your needs or conveniences.
Write your constitution with the future in mind. Do not use proper names or exact dates in defining leadership positions, locations, meeting times, etc.
After completing or revising the constitution, your organization must approve it. Then, you are ready to submit it to the Office of Student Activities. Once the OSA has reviewed your constitution, it will be taken to Student Senate for review and approval. For new organizations, the University President will give final approval.
The Office of Student Activities will review your constitution in a timely manner. If changes need to be made, your constitution will be returned to you. Your organization will then have three weeks to return the revised constitution to the OSA. After a revision is completed, your constitution will continue through the process. The entire process can be completed within a few months.
**Please note: All organizations will be contacted by the Office of Student Activities to conduct five-year revisions. This process ensures that constitutions are current and accurately reflect the changing needs and issues of the organization.
Remember that your constitution is only helpful if you use it! Get into the habit of referring to it for clarification and use it as your basis for decision making. Distribute a copy to the members of the organization each year so they are familiar with the rules of the organization.