In the episode of Even Stevens, “Dirty Work,” Louis and his friends started a lumberjack club in order to eat pancakes on the school’s dime. I always joke with my friends that this is a terrific idea and someone should do it at Florida Tech. In reality, it’s pretty easy to start a club and get some funding from the school for your club.
About a year ago, my friends Howard, Kendrick, and I decided we wanted to start a swing dancing club. Here are the steps it took to start it:
1. Join “fitforum.” Fitforum is Florida Tech’s list server for announcements of events, listing items for sale, etc. You can join fitforum by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. This will let you send emails to a large portion of the student body and faculty.
2. Check to make sure your club or a similar club doesn’t already exist. If you’re not already on orgsync.com, join there. Scroll through the clubs and make sure your club is unique.
3. Find your first 10 members. You can poll your friends and roommates to get a few members, and then ask your class and lab mates. If you can’t seem to get 10, you can send an email through fitforum asking if anyone is interested.
4. Find a faculty advisor. If you ask some of the secretaries of the departments, they might know if there’s any faculty/staff in their department that share an interest. From there, you can send an email to that professor and ask if they’d consider being your faculty advisor. You can also send an email out through fitforum or ask a faculty member to set it out through facforum.
5. Draft a constitution for your club. You can find examples on Orgsync under “Campus Umbrella” and then “files.”
6. Fill out the New Organizations Registration form. Go to “Organizations” and then “Register New Organization.” When filling out this form, you’ll need to put in the information from the steps listed above. Following submitting this, contact Student Life (321) 674-8080 to set up a meeting to go over new organization rules and to get your club approved.
7. After approval, you’ll need to set up your Orgsync page. Add text, invite your members, and upload your constitution. You need your first 10 members (including yourself) to fill out the liability waiver under “forms.” Ask your faculty advisor to fill out the Advisor Agreement Form under “forms.” Decide who your executive board (President, Vice President, etc.) will be and add their information and make them administrators on Orgsync.
8. Flyer campus! Make up a black and white flyer with information on your first event including the exact date and time. Print one of these flyers, and take it to the Student Life office (upstairs in the SUB) to get it stamped. If you bring paper, they will make copies for you. Put the flyers up in approved areas on campus. I’d recommend also sending an email out through fitforum on the day of the event.
9. Attend or have a representative attend the SGA meetings on behalf of your club. For each meeting you attend, your club will get $25 dollars of funding. To stay an active club, you must have someone attend these meetings.
Starting a club can be tons of fun, and give you a chance to meet people from all over the school. I’m so glad we started Florida Tech Swing; it has been the best experience I’ve had in the past few years. If you have any other questions about starting a club, go to the Office of Student Activities for the most up-to-date information.