Open Letter To Club Council

Dear Club Council,

Thanks so much for being so supportive of clubs this year. You’ve really helped us grow and learn a lot more about the possibilities for our coming years in our clubs.

Being an officer for clubs for the past 2 years, I’ve been really involved with Club Council. I can tell all of you work hard to make this possible and I respect the time you all put into this organization. However, as much as I love Club Council, I think there are a few major changes that need to happen in order to help newer and more unfamiliar students with the club processes.

One major thing that I believe needs to change is officer training and club council’s involvement with newer clubs. I’ve been a new officer and helped other newer students become officers as well and we all agree that officer training isn’t as informative as we’d like it to be. For instance, we’re told all the limitations of what our club can do, $600 for promo per quarter, 35 8.5x11 in. prints per month, etc. However, these processes aren’t as clear as they should be. When I was trying to order sweatshirts for my club I had a lot of difficulty finding a good vendor, what exactly I had to do to get these shirts made, and what documents/explanations Club Council was looking for. I wasn’t aware that invoices needed your program manager’s name and the arc address on them, I was unsure about how to even go about giving designs to these companies, and when I turned to Club Council they weren’t very helpful. After reaching out to three representatives and receiving about the same response(“have you looked at the vendors list”) I gave up for almost two whole quarters. After speaking to a club officer who had gone through the process herself, she made an easy 5 step plan for me to follow to order my shirts. I feel like Club Council should provide sample material similar to the one I received to help new officers with this process. Also, with new clubs I believe Club Council should be more involved when they are starting their first event. This would make learning the process more hands on for new officers and allow a smoother transition into event planning and marketing.

Club Council has amazing opportunities, it’s just very hard to figure out what to say and how to get things done. For example, food is a very hard thing to get approved. Cultural clubs have it easy, saying the food is part of the “educational experience for their culture” while other clubs need to jump through other hoops like making their event long enough to require food, etc. I wish I had someone who told me what to say and how to get food approved, as I struggled with it and got my first few requests denied. I believe Club Council liaisons need to be more involved with club officers in order to make this change happen. E.g. checking up on them bi-weekly, etc.

Another issue that’s not exactly a club council issue, but more of a campus issue is involvement on campus. There are so many activities and possibilities for clubs on campus. However, many people just go to class and go home right after. I feel like the reason is that clubs aren’t really emphasized during orientation, and Professors and Advisors don’t really mention them. Without this advertisement of activities outside of the classroom, it’s hard for students to make friends and their own communities around their hobbies or careers in college. I feel like we need to advertise ourselves more to invite this attention from our students.

I love all the possibilities Club Council makes available to our students at UWB. I’m attending Her Conference in New York through school funding in July and I’m super excited about it. I can’t wait to see what’s possible the next year. I really admire our team and can’t wait to meet the new team in the fall.

Thank you so much for an amazing year,

Sneha Ravichandran