“Quite cumbersome and a lengthy process”

With over 150 official clubs, ASCWU looks at what they can do to streamline club management

Samuel Beaumonte, Senior News Reporter

With nearly 150 official clubs on campus, CWU has hit a record amount of student involvement within ASCWU. The process to maintain club standards set by ASCWU has caused some students to feel overwhelmed and confused.

“Following Thanksgiving break, we’re going to meet up and discuss what we want done. We’re going to be contacting different third party vendors about our options,” Stan Southern, the Vice President for Clubs and Organizations said.

Southern is responsible for maintaining the standards and policies in order for a club to be officially recognized. Southern is looking for organizations that can help with club organization, recognition and communication; three aspects that students told him were important when it came to their clubs.

“We’re supposed to be providing support for the clubs and it’s not always smooth. The only thing that clubs should have to worry about in the school year is getting students in the club and keeping them engaged,” Southern said.

ASCWU is encouraging this development with plans to reduce the steps needed to get a club recognized, cutting the current page long requirements down by half.

“I’m really passionate about the clubs and making sure they have everything they need. I’ve started doing weekly emails to clubs and started an anonymous suggestion box outside my office,” Southern said.

“We’re looking at a site where clubs can be registered automatically and be connected to accounting and scheduling. It allows for consistent regular tracking as well as historical data.” Jeff Rosenbary, Executive Director of Student Involvement.

However, with the record amount of student clubs– which includes roughly 3,300 students– problems have started surfacing with the decade-old online technology. This is something Eric Bennet, the academic senator for the history club, has experienced.

“We were recognized by ASCWU this fall semester and we got the forms filled out, but the online staff had found out there was an issue. The two systems weren’t merging our information, so we still weren’t recognized,” Bennett said.

The method for maintaining clubs is about a decade old and is one of the things that ASCWU is looking at getting replaced by talking to third party vendors.

“There’s not a streamlined process for club recognition right now. It can be quite cumbersome and a lengthy process,” Jeff Rosenbary, the executive director of student involvement said.

Rosenbary said that the process that they’re using now was the same that they used when he was a student here working as the VP of student life and facilities.

“We’re looking at a site where clubs can be registered automatically and be connected to accounting and scheduling,” Rosenbary said. “It allows for consistent regular tracking as well as historical data.”

As the quarter progresses Bennet believes that communication has been improving. With an updated list of club senators that’s roughly at 70 percent completion and emails coming out more frequently, clubs are receiving weekly updates and can contact Southern directly.

“I’m satisfied that this is a good situation for clubs. We were able to move forward and I hope that other clubs have the ability to be accepted as well,” Bennett said.

This gradual improvement is seen as standard when it gives ASCWU staff and clubs time to set up effective communication and gather information, such as senator contact information which may change annually.

“Fall quarter is never a smooth quarter, anyone who comes into this position is going to have struggles but it’s how you pursue those struggles that matter,” Southern said. “If there’s been issues with the clubs that’s on me and it’s about how I fix the problems to the best of my ability.”

Southern says it’s not uncommon for him to start work at 7 a.m. and leave around 11 at night, fitting in school work as a junior philosophy major wherever he can.

“I work for them and if I’m not doing my job to the best of my ability I need to resign. I can’t give up on them and I need to push on. This is not an easy job but that’s no excuse, there was a bump in the road and we’re getting over it now,” Southern said.