Student Union to deregister inactive student groups Feb. 21
Student Union will deregister inactive student groups—a process which occurs every other year—Feb. 21.
According to sophomore and Activities Committee Chair Andrew Kocins, student groups often become inactive when core members graduate.
“A main reason for [groups becoming inactive is that they have] just kind of slowly puttered out as people have graduated. So, they’re literally not doing anything on campus, but they’re still in our system,” Kocins said. “[The goal is] to make sure our records are all up to date so we don’t have these groups that…have not even existed on campus for the last year or so.”
Sophomore and Speaker of the Treasury Alia Nahra added that many of the inactive groups are listed as Category III, meaning that every semester, a certain amount of money gets deposited into their accounts, rather than the groups going through a budgeting process. The money is returned to SU accounts at the end of the year, but once inactive groups are deregistered, this money can be allocated to other groups.
“[We want] to make sure that that money actually goes to student groups who are operating on campus and not groups that haven’t been here for years because then that money just goes unspent, and it could be put to better uses,” Nahra said.
Student Union used specific criteria to determine which student groups were inactive. The groups that were determined inactive had not submitted a budget to SU Budget Committee, spent any money from SU accounts, used their group-specific printing code on SU office printers, made room reservations on campus or registered in Washington University Student Group Organizer in the past year.
After determining which groups qualified as potentially inactive, SU sent out an all-school email listing all groups designated to be deregistered Feb. 14.
“Once we use all [this] criteria to whittle down to this smaller list, we’re fairly confident that the groups on that list are inactive, but as a final check, we’re emailing the whole student body with the list saying, ‘Hey, if you’re associated with one of these groups, please reach out to us ASAP…letting us know that you’re still here on campus, and we can get you back up to date,’” Kocins said.
Every semester, SU receives somewhere from 20 to 40 applications from new student groups hoping to be officially recognized. SU hopes that by deregistering inactive groups, it can focus on funding active groups more efficiently.
“[We want to clean] out the system to make sure that when we’re allocating money and having all these resources that we give to student groups, that they’re going to groups who are active and exist on campus rather than those that are not,” Kocins said.
Kocins emphasized that the purpose of the emailed list of groups to be deregistered is to give any potential members a last chance to remain recognized as a student organization.
“I don’t want to come across as like ‘I’m the guy who’s killing student groups…you have to email me or else’ because that’s not at all what this is about. This is [because] we think you’re inactive, but we’re looking for a sign of life,” Kocins said. “We’re not penalizing groups at all; this is the final check we want to do to be absolutely certain that we’re not going to accidentally deregister someone who is actually active.”