Student organizations at Northern Arizona University are designed to serve students and contribute to the academic, political, cultural, religious/spiritual, social, or recreational life of the campus. Student organizations are a valuable part of the student experience and provide opportunities for students to take on leadership roles and build skills related to organizational development and administration, event planning, fundraising, budgeting, marketing, and public relations. Student organizations also provide learning experiences specific to students’ areas of academic or extracurricular interest.
While the University supports student organizations, registration of a student organization with the Office of Student Life does not constitute University endorsement or approval of the policies and/or activities of the organization. No student organization should represent or imply that it speaks for or in the name of Northern Arizona University.
The Office of Student Life uses an online system called Community to register student organizations. Please log in to Community to see a complete list of all organizations that are currently registered and active on campus.
Types of Student Organizations
NAU student organizations are classified into one and only one of the following classifications, even though they may fit into several categories. Student organizations self-select the category they wish to be in with the exception of Fraternity and Sorority—those groups must be recognized by the Office of Greek Life.
Academic student organizations comprise the largest number of clubs and organization on campus. These include any organization that is affiliated with an academic program or college.
Advocacy student organizations are those that advocate for a particular cause or population of students.
Club Sport student organizations are sports teams or groups engaged in active practice and competition against other schools or individuals. The Office of Student Life collaborates with Campus Recreation Services to support these organizations
Cultural student organizations represent and promote the traditions and activities associated with a particular culture.
Fraternity and Sorority groups are associated with national social Greek-letter fraternities and sororities that select membership through a bid process.
Recreation/Game student organizations focus on recreational activities and games in a non-competitive atmosphere.
Religious student organizations may also register with the Office of Student Life. Although the university, as a state institution, is prohibited from promoting religious activities, it recognizes the importance of religion and spirituality in the life and education of its students.
Representative student organizations are those elected bodies that represent the general student population.
Residence Hall Councils are groups that represent the concerns and interests of a particular residence hall
Service/Honorary student organizations are academically-focused groups that limit membership based on certain requirements or community service-oriented groups.
Special Interest groups are not connected to an academic program or college. They serve the needs of students with specific special interests.
Student Organization Policy
This policy was established by the University Cabinet in response to Board of Regents regulations. The registration of a faculty or student organization by the university does not constitute university endorsement or approval of the policies and activities of the organization. No student organization shall represent nor imply that it speaks for or in the name of the university.
A. Membership in a student organization shall be limited to members of the university community. Non-members of the university community who are also members of scientific, academic, scholarly, and honorary organizations with registered units or chapters on the university campus may become affiliated with the university campus unit of such organizations.
B. In order to represent, run for office, or hold office in any university registered organization or activity, except athletics, a student must meet the following academic requirements: (l) the student must be registered for a minimum of seven (7) hours, (2) the student must have a minimum grade point average of not less than 2.25 for all university work undertaken.
C. Each organization must have a membership of at least 5 students. At least 2 of those members must be designated as officers (President, Vice President, etc.). The organization must verify this by listing at least 5 members and 2 officers on its roster in the Community system.
D. Each registered group on campus must have a full-time faculty or staff member as adviser. The choice of an adviser is generally determined by the organization and may be changed at any time. In addition, student organizations may choose to have other advisers such as graduate students, community members, or members of clergy.
E. Northern Arizona University prohibits discrimination in organizational membership on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion, age, or veteran status. Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 106.14, makes an exception for social fraternities and sororities with regard to gender requirements for membership.
Procedures for Registering New Organizations
A. Individuals seeking to form a new or reactivate an old student organization shall:
1. Log in to the Community system and complete the “New Group Registration” or “Group Reactivation” request form.
2. Upload to Community a Constitution containing:
a) Statement of Purpose
b) Statement of Nondiscrimination
c) Organizational Structure
d) Provision for Regular Meetings
e) List of Activities
3. Provide in Community a list of officers, addresses, and phone numbers.
4. Provide in Community the name, address, and phone number of full-time faculty or staff adviser.
5. Provide in Community a roster containing the names of student members.
6. Professional fraternities, societies, or clubs, associated with a particular academic discipline shall, in addition, submit evidence of approval and sponsorship by the dean of the college with which the organization is associated.
B. National fraternal organizations need not present constitutions which contain secret clauses provided:
1. Assurance is obtained from the Office of Student Life that the constitution is in order.
2. The National is formed from a previous local fraternal organization and no changes have been made.
It is assumed that each residence hall, fraternity, and sorority has adopted or will adopt its own hall and chapter rules and procedures for the enforcement thereof.
C. It is the policy of the university to register any student organization formed in good faith for a lawful purpose consonant with the objectives of the university. A group of students may organize and secure official registration provided that the proposed organization: represents an academic, political, cultural, social or recreational contribution to the life of the campus; does not discriminate in the selection of members on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, religion, age, or veteran status; agrees to abide by the University Hazing Policy and other university regulations (SeeStudent Code of Conduct); and has followed the established administrative procedures required for registration. The Dean of Students (or designee) exercises the authority to withdraw registration immediately from any student organization.
D. New student organizations must be approved by Associated Students of NAU or Graduate Student Government (for graduate student organizations). Following the ASNAU or GSG approval for student organization status and approval by the Office of Student Life, the newly registered organization is activated in the Community system.
Procedures for Maintaining Status as a Student Organization
A. At the end of each spring semester, prior to a deadline specified by the Office of Student Life, the president or authorized representative of each returning student organization must log in to the Community system and complete the “Group Reactivation” request form. (Groups continuing their student organization status must meet this deadline for filing. Prospective new groups may file at any time.)
B. Organizations that fail to reregister after two consecutive years will be required to seek re-approval from ASNAU or GSG.
C. All organizations must also submit all proposed changes, amendments, and additions to constitutions and by-laws to the Office of Student Life through the Community system.
Privileges of On-Campus Status
A. Using the University’s name, as long as the word “club” or “student organization” also appears in the organization’s name (i.e. NAU Volleyball Club, NAU Forestry Club) or the University’s name is used to designate location (i.e. Art Student Association of NAU, Hillel at NAU).
B. Applying for organizational funding from Associated Students of NAU (ASNAU), Associated Students for Women’s Issues (ASWI), Student Activities Council (STAC), and Sodexho.
C. Utilizing University facilities, including weekly meeting space.
D. Accessing student organization web page space.
E. Hosting/sponsoring events and activities on campus.
F. Sponsoring candidates in campus events, forums, and elections.
G. Requesting Institutional Excuses for extracurricular activities directly related to the educational mission and scope of the University.
H. Recruiting new members from among the NAU student body.
I. Participating as an organization in Associated Students of NAU sponsored events.
Social Events Policy
As an institution of higher education, the university has a responsibility to encourage self-directed group activity. In the recognition of this goal, the university makes available the use of its facilities. The grant of use, however, cannot be without conditions. All use of the facilities of students and student organizations must be orderly and lawful at all times. They must not constitute an undue interference with the instructional program, and they must be consistent with the educational purposes of the university. Failure to meet these conditions may be basis for denying the use of the university facilities. Application of the conditions, however, is to be tempered by an awareness that the ends served by vigorous student activity are vital and a realization that student organizations cannot flourish in a distrustful atmosphere.
Students, student organizations, and faculty or staff members of the university may not contractually bind the university without written authorization of the Arizona Board of Regents or the President of the university. Activities contracts must be reviewed by the Office of Student Life.
Legal ResponsibilitiesStudent organizations wishing to sponsor events on the NAU campus must have them approved by the Office of Student Life. The Office of Student Life recommends that any student organization planning an off-campus activity that involves travel, physical activity, personal/group risks, alcohol, etc. make contact with a staff member in their office for advising.
University Clubs and OrganizationsThe Office of Student Life coordinates the amount and type of solicitation for students and registered student clubs and organizations. Any student and/or student organization planning to conduct an event, a fundraiser and/or the distribution of materials on campus must obtain permission from the Office of Student Life. Contact the Office of Student Life in the University Union for the appropriate forms. Failure to have an event approved by the Office of Student Life may result in the event being canceled. Student organizations planning to conduct a fundraising event off-campus should contact the Office of Student Life prior to making contact with businesses.
Revenue generated by a student organization may not be used for personal gain, for the purchase of alcohol, drugs or to fund any illegal activity as defined by Arizona Statutes.
Commercial VendorsAny vendor wishing to conduct the sale or distribution of commercial items anywhere on university property must obtain permission from the Office of Campus Unions and Activities as well as permission from each location where the vendor may wish to conduct a sale. The vendor will be required to complete a solicitation permit at least 30 days in advance of the requested sales date(s). Vendors are prohibited from conducting business on campus without a fully executed solicitation permit. All vendors shall comply with the laws, rules and regulations of the United States, the State of Arizona, the City of Flagstaff, and Northern Arizona University. Any individual(s) distributing literature is/are also responsible for any fees related to the cleaning of litter related to distribution efforts. University policy prohibits door-to-door distribution of literature and/or sales of items of any kind in any building on campus. In addition, solicitation in residence halls must be approved by the Residence Life Central Office in North Hall, or please call 928-523-3978.
Refer to University Marketing