An organization is a voluntary special interest group organized for educational, social, and service purposes and comprised of its members. Organizations that request funding from the Government of the Student Body or Graduate Professional Student Senate are required to be recognized by the university. Recognition as an organization requires the following:
- Organizations must be established for purposes that do not violate local, state or federal law; are consistent with the broad educational mission of the university; and are supportive of the regulations, guidelines and policies of Iowa State University. The university recognizes that some student organizations may have a purpose to advocate for a change in existing law and this provision does not prevent the student organization from exercising its First Amendment Right to do so.
- Annual recognition is required a minimum of once within a 12 month period with the Student Activities Center.
- Iowa State University recognizes that a nondiscriminatory environment complements its commitment to academic inquiry, intellectual discourse and personal growth. Iowa State University also recognizes the interests of students to organize and associate with like-minded students. Accordingly, any individual who subscribes to the goals and beliefs of a student organization may participate in and become a member of the organization.
- The organization must be nonprofit in nature.
- New organizations must submit a constitution in order to be recognized by Iowa State University. If the organization does not submit their constitution within the two months, the organization may need to re-submit all information in order to be considered for recognition.
- The Compliance Agreement Form submitted for recognition shall certify that the student officers listed are currently enrolled, not on conduct probation or academic probation, and have a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 and above.
- The organization is required to have a president and treasurer (or parallel leadership positions). Other leadership positions are optional. The president and treasurer (or parallel leadership positions) are required to be annually trained through the officer training program.
- The president, treasurer (or parallel leadership positions) and adviser(s) of each organization shall agree to inform their membership of Iowa State University's policies affecting their organization and provide an assurance that their organization will comply with these policies. The president, treasurer (or parallel leadership positions) and adviser(s) must further verify that their organization follows all local, state and federal laws.
- Annually, each student organization must provide the full names, local home addresses, local phone numbers and e-mail addresses of its president, treasurer (or parallel leadership positions), three additional student members and each of its advisers. Campus organizations must provide the same information except that the three additional members do not have to be students. This contact information must be kept current in the Student Activities Center through the utilization of the Student Organization website and Compliance Agreement Form.
- Grievances within or among organizations shall be reviewed by the Government of the Student Body Supreme Court. Actions of the Government of the Student Body Supreme Court may be appealed to the Dean of Students Office. Guidelines are on file in the Dean of Students Office and the Government of the Student Body.
- Organizations are required to submit an annual year-end report that includes a detailed summary of their activities for the past year; any amendments to their constitution and bylaws and any amendments to their operations manual. This report must be filed in the Student Activities Center by the end of each academic or fiscal year (June 30).
- Recognition granted for residence hall associations, residence hall houses, sports clubs and fraternities and sororities are subject to additional policies administered by the respective office and/or organization: Campus Organizations Accounting Office, Department of Residence, Recreation Services and the Dean of Students Office - Office of Greek Affairs.
- Fiscal Responsibilities
- Organizations must maintain financial accounts with the Campus Organizations Accounting Office and must conduct all financial transactions through this office. Student and campus organizations may not hold accounts outside of the university unless authorized by Campus Organizations Accounting and the Student Activities Center.
- Employees of recognized organizations are not considered Iowa State University employees (except for Student Services, and some sponsored organizations). Payroll is processed by ISU as a convenience to the organization.
- All organizations must have at least five members not including their adviser(s).
- Membership in a student organization must be mainly composed of students (minimum 80% student membership) and be controlled and directed by students. Only student members shall have voting rights in a student organization. Non-university community members may participate in the activities of student organizations but may not be voting members.
- Membership in a campus organization is open to university community members (faculty, staff, students, spouses/partners of these persons, and/or retired faculty) and non-university community members (alumni, Ames and surrounding community residents). Non-university community members may participate in the activities of campus organizations and act as voting members, provided at least 50% of voting members belong to the university as defined in this section.
- For the purposes of this policy, community college students who have been accepted into the Admissions Partnership Program who have chosen to pay the optional student activities fee shall be considered ISU students. Admissions Partnership Program participants who do NOT pay the optional student activities fee shall be considered non-university community members.
- University advisers are required for all organizations. Advisers shall be faculty members whenever possible in order to promote student-faculty interaction outside of the classroom. Professional and Scientific or Merit staff members with advising experience and/or relevant expertise may also serve as university advisers. Advisers must be employed at Iowa State University on at least a halftime, permanent basis. The Division of Student Affairs shall have the right to not approve advisers of student or campus organizations which are on disciplinary probation.
- All advisers will be required to complete the Adviser Training Program and sign the Adviser Contract annually. The Student Activities Center will provide specific information to organizations about these requirements.
- Graduate assistants may serve as additional advisers in conjunction with university advisers who meet the requirements stated above; however, they will not have signing authority (i.e., financial transactions (vouchers/intramurals), contracts, etc.).
- Constitution and Bylaws
- In order to complete the recognition process, all organizations must develop and provide a copy of their constitution and bylaws. Sponsored and affiliated organizations must also provide a copy of the charter, constitution and/or bylaws of any organization external to the university with which such group may be affiliated.
- Required components of the constitution and bylaws
o All recognized organizations at Iowa State University must include a general statement about membership eligibility, standards, and requirements.
For example, "Membership shall be open to all students at Iowa State University." The membership selection process, types of membership, and procedures for disciplining and/or removing members should also be outlined here if not already appearing in the bylaws. If a student organization selects its membership based on a commitment to a set of goals and beliefs, the constitution and bylaws should clearly identify the goals and beliefs of the organization.
o All recognized organizations at Iowa State University must include the following statement (or its equivalent) in their constitution and bylaws:
"The student officers of this organization must meet the following requirements:
i. Have a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) as stated below and meet that minimum GPA in the semester immediately prior to the election/appointment, the semester of election/appointment and semesters during the term of office. For undergraduate, graduate, and professional students, the minimum cumulative GPA is 2.00. In order for this provision to be met, at least six hours (half-time credits) must have been taken for the semester under consideration.
ii. Be in good standing with the university and enrolled: at least half time (six or more credit hours) if an undergraduate student (unless fewer credits are required to graduate in the spring and fall semesters) during the term of office, and at least half time (four or more credits) if a graduate level student (unless fewer credits are required in the final stages of their degree as defined by the Continuous Registration Requirement) during their term of office.
iii. Be ineligible to hold an office should the student fail to maintain the requirements as prescribed in (i) and (ii)."
o All recognized organizations at Iowa State University must include the following statement (or its equivalent) in their constitution:
"All monies belonging to this organization shall be deposited and disbursed through a bank account established for this organization at the Campus Organizations Accounting Office and/or approved institution/office (must receive authorization via Campus Organizations Accounting Office and Student Activities Center). All funds must be deposited within 48 hours after collection. The Adviser to this organization must approve and sign each expenditure before payment." (See Fiscal Responsibilities above.)
- If an organization's constitution is deemed acceptable after review by the Student Activities Center, it will be forwarded to the SORB. The SORB will review the constitution and ratify it by a majority vote. If a constitution is rejected, the organization has thirty (30) calendar days to revise and resubmit the constitution for approval.
Membership and participation in the organization must be open to all students without regard to race, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, disability, or status as a U.S. veteran. Membership and participation in the organization must also be open without regard to sex, unless exempt under Title IX. Organizations that select their members and/or leaders on the basis of a commitment to a set of beliefs may limit membership and participation in the organization to students who, upon individual inquiry by the organization, affirm that they support the organization's goals and agree with its beliefs, so long as no student who meets the other criteria for membership or participation is excluded based of his or her status of race, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, sex, marital status, disability, or a U.S. veteran.