Suzanne Buchholz, Reporter
The clubs handbook at the college, known officially as the Club Policy Manual, has undergone a few changes that affect the structure of campus clubs.
One of the most significant modifications being made to the handbook is the types of clubs that students can form, Clubs Senator Emma Embleton said. Now, clubs will be classified as either recognized or certified.
“That’ll basically just be the different levels of how much you can ask from the college and how much you give back to the college,” Embleton said.
Recognized clubs will have fewer privileges than certified clubs, such as less funding. This is compensated by the fact that recognized clubs aren’t required to organize as many events or undergo as much training as certified clubs. This is a good club platform for those who want to create clubs but don’t have as much time to devote to it, Embleton said.
Although certified clubs receive more funding, they require more devotion of time, as they’re considered part of the clubs’ council. They need to host more events than recognized clubs, and their funding must be regulated to include campus-related activities instead of only club-exclusive activities.
The updated handbook contains the rules and regulations that clubs on campus are required to follow in order to maintain their status. It features rules on such matters as planning events and requesting money for activities, Embleton said.
“It’s mostly just defining what it means to be a club, what kind of things you have to follow,” Embleton said. “In order for us as a college to be giving clubs our money, we want something in return. We want student support, involvement and engagement.”
Changes to the handbook were discussed by members of the Office of Student Life at the beginning of fall quarter 2015 and were finalized during winter quarter 2016.
The other changes to the handbook are minor and mainly affect the regulations already in place, Embleton said.
“Mostly we’re just enforcing the rules that we already have in the handbook,” Embleton said. “Last year they weren’t enforced very much so clubs were kind of left to their own devices. So we’re just making sure clubs have the proper guidance that they need to succeed.”
Clubs Coordinator Andrew Punchak said the changes will benefit clubs already in place as well as ones students want to form. He said it’ll clarify many rules for students, which in turn should inspire them to create clubs without worrying about how to do it.
“I think the changes and additions to the club handbook are going to be a great resource for clubs to refer to,” Punchak said. “It answers a lot of questions clubs commonly have and builds a great base to work with.”
The new regulations won’t affect the way clubs are formed on campus, although additional steps for registration might be added for more involved clubs that want to expand beyond the Pierce campus, Embleton said. The current process for starting up a club is to fill out a form in the OSL, collect signatures from other students who’d be interested in joining and find an adviser to manage activities. The club founder would then continue to keep in touch with Embleton and Punchak to ensure the club is running as planned.
Although the lengthy handbook is intimidating, Punchak said, he wants students to know that they shouldn’t feel so daunted by it that they decide not to form their own clubs.
“After looking through a few pages, students will see how accessible and easy it is to follow,” Punchak said.
Embleton feels that the changes to the handbook might make it easier for students to create clubs as well as engage with other clubs.
“The way they’re formed right now, it’s kind of that they form and then they’re off, they do their meetings and they stay within themselves,” Embleton said. “They don’t really branch out, and I’m hoping that the new rules in the handbook will help expand the clubs for them and create more clubs, create inter-club activities like more than one club working together.”
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