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UCS amends club recognition policies

Changes formalize current UCS/SAO practices, bar non-student control

Senior Staff Writer
Thursday, October 24, 2019

At yesterday's UCS meeting, the Council passed two amendments regarding student group recognition.

The Undergraduate Council of Students passed two amendments to its code of operations concerning student group recognition and heard updates on committee initiatives during its Wednesday meeting.

The first amendment establishes an enrollment requirement for UCS-approved student groups. Category I student groups must maintain 10 or more members while Category II and III groups must have at least 15, according to the text of the amendment. Groups that fail to meet this requirement for two consecutive semesters will face “de-constitution,” said Alex Song ’20, chair of Student Activities. Previously, the bylaws did not formally require that student groups keep up enrollment, though the Student Activities Office and UCS had an informal version of the policy.

The second amendment bars faculty or other non-student advisors from having power over a student group’s operations or finances, reinforcing an informal expectation.

“There have been circumstances in the past where that’s the case,” Song said. “We just want to align ourselves so we can see those kind of situations out.”

If a student group fails to remove an advisor’s control after meeting with UCS, SAO and “other necessary parties” about such an infraction, the new rule will allow UCS to potentially abolish that organization, according to the text of the amendment. Song noted that these policies only apply to student groups registered through UCS.

At the end of the meeting, representatives from many of UCS’ internal committees shared their recent work with the general body. Chair of Wellness Shivani Nishar ’20 said that her committee is working on restocking and expanding food pantries on campus. Zanagee Artis ’22, chair of Campus Life, said that his committee was working with the Office of Sustainability to organize a winter clothing drive.

Jason Carroll ’21, UCS vice president and chair of Outreach and Advocacy, noted that his committee has addressed concerns about unclean water in buildings on Wriston Quadrangle, an issue he discussed in his campaign for vice president. The Division of Campus Life “let me know that that’s been finished by Facilities,” Carroll said.

The University could not be reached for comment by press time on steps they have taken to address unclean water.

During the midsemester check-in portion of the meeting, UCS discussed an Oct. 23 article in The Herald that revealed over half of undergraduates have no opinion of UCS. Members discussed ways to increase engagement with students, and later mentioned initiatives to expand UCS’ social media presence, such as by posting more frequently.

UCS also heard announcements from members of the Brown Consulting Club and from a representative of Dance Marathon. The BCC was founded last year and “works with companies to address their research needs and help them grow,” said UCS Treasurer Summer Dai ’22, who is a member of BCC. BCC is consulting for UCS to improve the organization’s efficiency and develop best practices. The first stage of the consulting process involves learning about UCS. To this end, the group requested interviews with members of the Council.

A representative from Dance Marathon, a fundraising event for Hasbro Children’s Hospital, told the Council that the event will occur Nov. 15, from 4 p.m. to midnight, and will feature games in addition to the dancing.

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