15 Student Organization Policies
15.1 Definition of Student Organization
A student organization is defined as a group of at least 7 undergraduate and/or graduate students in good academic standing that have a common purpose in alignment with the mission of the University of New Hampshire that has been recognized by the Memorial Union & Student Activities department.
15.2 Other Recognized Groups of Students
UNH recognizes other groups on-campus. Although these groups are not student organizations, they must comply with their own standards, bylaws, and/or constitutions, University policies, and all applicable Federal, State, and local laws in order to maintain their recognition.
The following governance organizations are University-wide elected student bodies that participate in the shared governance of the institution. They are official representatives of student opinion for the constituencies served by that group.
- Graduate Student Senate
- Student Senate
Other governing bodies
The University also recognizes the following governance organizations charged with governance of their respective units:
- Interfraternity Council
- Panhellenic Council
- Memorial Union Board of Governors
- Campus Living Association
residence hall councils
Residence Hall Councils are recognized by the Office of Residential Life or the Department of Housing and fall under the Campus Living Association umbrella. They hold standing pages on Wildcat Link unless otherwise determined by Residence Life or Housing.
Sport Clubs are recognized through the Campus Recreation department. More information can be found in the Sports Club policy in the Student Rights, Rules, and Responsibilities or on the Campus Recreation website.
15.3 Recognition of Student Organizations other than Fraternities or Sororities
- Any group that meets the definition of a student organization must apply for recognition through the Memorial Union & Student Activities and receive approval by the Director of the Memorial Union & Student Activities or designee (Director) to obtain privileges of a recognized student organization.
- Representatives of all current groups seeking to be recognized for the next year must complete the formal recognition process. For a complete outline of the recognition process, visit the Memorial Union & Student Activities website.
- Groups who apply for recognition and receive approval will be granted recognition for an entire year, provided they maintain all standards set forth in the Student Organization Policies & Guidelines and the Student Rights, Rules, and Responsibilities.
- Prospective organizations may apply for recognition upon the start of classes each fall semester through the end of March.
- Organizations directly supported by the undergraduate Student Activity Fee (SAF) will follow the same guidelines and recognition policies as non-SAF-funded organizations. They will have the same benefits and expectations that come with being a recognized student organization.
15.4 Recognition of Fraternities or Sororities
Social fraternities and sororities must be recognized by the Office of Off-Campus Engagement & Fraternity and Sorority Life and meet the requirements of the Fraternity/Sorority Life Minimum Standards for Expansion.
- New (inter)national organizations seeking recognition must schedule a meeting with the Office of Off-Campus Engagement & Fraternity and Sorority Life, and then if a relationship agreement is approved by the University the new organization will need to complete the Expectations of Excellence and Chapter Accreditation Program process and expansion/extension process. The mission, principles, and values of the potential fraternity/sorority must be social in nature, and the membership of all students will be University of New Hampshire, undergraduate degree-seeking students.
- When all requirements and a relationship agreement have been sent to the interested organization, the organization may move forward in the accreditation process. See the extension/expansion policy located on the Off-Campus Engagement and Fraternity and Sorority Life website which will be given to the potential new organization at the initial meeting and includes an extensive list of requirements in order to be recognized by the University. When fraternal organizations complete this process, they will receive one of three outcomes; (1) accreditation, (2) accreditation with distinction, or (3) will not be accredited through the University and the respective councils.
- Fraternal organizations that receive accreditation will be granted accreditation for an entire calendar year and receive all privileges and rights of any student organization provided they maintain all standards set forth by the Memorial Union & Student Activities, Office of Off-Campus Engagement & Fraternity and Sorority Life, respective councils, and the (inter)national organizations. The organization must maintain a charter in good standing through their national organization to remain in good standing with the University.
- Once an organization meets accreditation in good standing status through the Areas of Excellence Program and has been chartered the organization will join its respective council as a voting member. All chapters must remain in good standing and meet accreditation to remain a recognized student organization at the University of New Hampshire. Organizations that fall below the councils and accreditation standards will complete a process to maintain their accreditation facilitated by the Office of Off-Campus Engagement & Fraternity and Sorority Life.
15.5 Recognition Appeal Process
If recognition status should be denied or revoked by the Memorial Union & Student Activities department, the organization may appeal this decision to the Assistant Director of Programming and Leadership of the Memorial Union & Student Activities. This appeal must be made in writing via email within 5 business days of the decision notification. The approval or disapproval of the appeal is made by the Assistant Director and the decision is final. Student Organizations that have lost recognition may reapply during the scheduled recognition period.
In the case of Fraternities and Sororities, national organizations are not entitled to an appeal process if they are denied recognition as a new organization. If a new fraternal organization is granted recognition but does not successfully complete the accreditation process, there is no appeal but they may continue to work with the Office of Off-Campus Engagement & Fraternity and Sorority Life to complete the accreditation process in the future. If a fraternal organization is at risk of being suspended, the process is referred to Community Standards and the organization is entitled to the appeal process outlined by the Code of Conduct.
15.6 Rights and Benefits of Recognized Student Organizations
Student organizations are entitled to the following rights and privileges subject to all other relevant policies of the University
- Utilize the financial services support of the Memorial Union & Student Activities department;
- Apply for funding through and utilize the services of the Student Activity Fee Committee;
- Use of advising and consulting services provided by the Memorial Union & Student Activities department or in the case of Fraternities and Sororities, the Office of Off-Campus Engagement & Fraternity and Sorority Life;
- Access to leadership opportunities developed by the Memorial Union & Student Activities department.
- Use of the University name, in accordance with established protocols;
- Participation in student organization recruitment activities such as UDay;
- Access to a public webpage for organizational promotion, recruitment, and administrative tools on Wildcat Link;
- Use of virtual advertising resources such as Wildcat Link, the University calendar, and limited free advertising with The New Hampshire;
- Use of physical advertising resources such as posting in University buildings, residence halls, and on designated bulletin boards on University property, in accordance with all posting policies.
- May request to use approved campus facilities and services;
- Ability to apply for office and storage space in the Memorial Union Building.
- Print materials for meetings and programs;
- Support in planning and booking domestic and international travel;
- University insurance coverage when applicable;
- Receive mail in the Granite Square Station.
15.7 Responsibilities of Recognized Student Organizations
Recognized student organizations and the members at the University of New Hampshire are expected to follow the responsibilities below. Failing to adhere to these responsibilities may result in formal follow-up including the organization losing its recognition.
- Adhere to all applicable Federal, State, and local laws, and University and University System policies;
- Adhere to the University’s Civil Rights and Equity Policies as listed in the Student Rights, Rules, and Responsibilities;
- Adhere to the University’s anti-hazing policy as listed in the Student Rights, Rules, and Responsibilities;
- Adhere to the Student Organization Policies & Guidelines as established by the Memorial Union & Student Activities or in the case of Fraternities and Sororities, adhere to the Office of Off-Campus Engagement & Fraternity and Sorority Life's policies, their respective councils' policies, and their accreditation requirements;
- May not sign any commitments, contracts, or invoices on behalf of the University or the student organization.
Alcohol, Nicotine, and Other Drugs for organizations other than fraternities and sororities
- May not purchase alcohol, nicotine, or other drugs using personal funds for any organization gathering including but not limited to meetings and events;
- May not purchase alcohol, nicotine, or other drugs using University funds including but not limited to campus funds, membership dues, gift funds, or student activity fee funds;
- May not host nor co-sponsor an event where alcohol, nicotine, or other drugs are given away, sold, provided, nor promoted;
- May not advertise events in which alcohol, nicotine, or other drugs are given away, sold, provided, nor promoted.
ALCOHOL, NICOTINE, AND OTHER DRUGS FOR FRATERNITIES AND SORORITIES
- Fraternities and Sororities must adhere to UNH's Social Event policy.
- May not fundraise nor use University funds for the purpose of financial gain of individual members;
- Use an on-campus or University fund if the recognized student organization will accept monies unless the organization is currently incorporated inter/nationally or with the State of New Hampshire;
- Sell tickets through Memorial Union & Student Activities ticketing services for all student organization-sponsored events that charge admission unless otherwise required by a national organization for Fraternities or Sororities and approved by the Office of Off-Campus Engagement and Fraternity and Sorority Life
- Clearly indicate the organization as sponsor on all announcements, flyers, letters, posters, social media posts, etc., promoting or describing events, meetings, or programs;
- Adhere to all posting policies by the town of Durham and spaces within the University, including but not limited to the Memorial Union Building, residence halls, and academic buildings;
- Gain permission from the Director when seeking to obtain an organizational website.
- Hold membership of the organization accountable to the organization’s governing documents;
- Conduct fair elections and/or appointments of officers;
- Permit members to disassociate at any time;
- Update organization information in a timely manner in places such as Wildcat Link.
- Must be established and directed by matriculated students on the UNH-Durham campus;
- Register any plans for travel with Memorial Union & Student Activities or in the case of Fraternities and Sororities with the Office of Off-Campus Engagement and Fraternity & Sorority Life. Student organization travel is defined as any off-campus outing where members of the group are representing the University or could be perceived as affiliated with the University;
- Confer with Memorial Union & Student Activities staff when updating organization information including but not limited to the name of organization, constitution, and/or statement of purpose;
- Gain permission from the Director, or in the case of Fraternities and Sororities, the Office of Off-Campus Engagement and Fraternity and Sorority Life, when seeking to obtain alumni contact lists for the purpose of University sanctioned fundraising and/or communication;
- Meet with the Coordinator for Student Organization Success of the Memorial Union & Student Activities (or designee), or in the case of Fraternities and Sororities, the Office of Off-Campus Engagement & Fraternity and Sorority Life, on a periodic basis if the organization is struggling or in danger of losing recognition status.