SILLIMAN UNIVERSITY STUDENT GOVERNMENT COMMITTEE ON STUDENT ORGANIZATIONS (SUSG- ComSO) said students will no longer be required to be part of their course organization next school year due to the new membership policy.
According to Cecil Ann Sung, committee head of ComSO, the membership policy transition addresses the issue that was brought up several times from last year’s USPEAK event. Students were complaining about the required large organization fees that they pay, but do not see the value.
Sung said, “Organization fees are usually allocated [for] acquaintance party and Christmas party. Other than these two activities, there aren’t much activities that students can join or can benefit from.”
The membership policy transition requires the council and academic organizations to be separated.
“The job of the organization is not to govern the students but to enrich the academic lives of the members,” Sung added. “The council should be the one governing the students, not the organization.”
However, academic organizations expressed concerns on their future activities. Without requiring students to be members, it is difficult to fund activities.
ComSO defended that all organizations should be on equal footing and academic organizations should find strategic ways in recruiting members.
ComSO have various reasons why membership policy transition should happen: stagnancy among organizations especially growth and development, lack of innovation in terms of creating new events and activities that students can enjoy, and leveling out the playing field for all types of organizations.
Academic organizations are usually on top in the status quo of ComSO’s annual organization ratings. “They have the manpower to drive their activities and they also have the funding because they can require students to pay the org fee.”
Membership policy transition is still in the legal process but Sung confirmed that it will be fully implemented next school year.