How to Start an Organization on Your College Campus

The summer leading up to my senior year of college I started a chapter of Pinky Promise Movement. I never started college with the intention or desire of starting a campus group but God gave me the vision and after wrestling with the idea I started the organization. Today I'm going to share with you some things that will help you out in getting your organization started.

Before I share these steps with you I want to encourage you to make sure it's a God idea. I have a million ideas and visions running through my mind all the time. It's super important for me to make sure that I am not just doing something out of selfish ambition but that it is truly something God wants me to do. Starting a Pinky Promise Chapter was truly a God idea because I didn't want to do it. I knew my campus needed it but I surely didn't want to be the one to start it but I did. It's important not to just start organizations and lead clubs and groups out of selfish ambition or the desire to just build your resume. Make sure you are being led by God in all your decisions.

1. Get approved

When starting my Pinky Promise Chapter I had to make sure and get approval from Pinky Promise to start the chapter. Luckily their process was super simple. All I had to do was go on their website and start a group. So if you are trying to start a chapter of an already established organization i.e. Habitat for Humanity make sure your reach out to them to get approval before bringing it to your college campus. If you are starting an organization of your own then you don't need to worry about this step. Instead you can get started with getting approved by your college to start the organization. For me this required going in front of the SGA of your campus and essentially pitching your idea to them to vote on whether or not to approve your and/or provide you with funding. Also I had to create By-laws or some colleges call it a constitution. Don't be afraid it's easy. Ask another organization to use theirs and just edit it with your organizations information. Don't re-invent the wheel. Ain't nobody got time for that!

2. Start Social Media Accounts

Start an Instagram, Twitter, Facebook Fanpage, Periscope, Snapchat, YouTube and etc... Get on whatever social media platforms you feel will help you best reach those on your college campus. I mostly focused on facebook and twitter because most students from my campus used those platforms especially facebook. I would post information about the organization such as the mission and vision. I would also quotes that fit with the purpose of the organization. I would use hashtags to help with spreading the word. For, example my college had hashtags for incoming freshman such as #ASC16 and I would put that hashtag on the end of my tweets. Plus you know first year students are interested in getting involved once arriving on campus so they were a perfect target audience.

3. Student Activities Fair

My college had a student activities fair every August right when classes were about to start. I had to register via email to be apart of the fair so in the weeks leading up to the fair make sure to look out for information on how to register to be apart of it and reserve a booth. Or you can reach out to your Director of Student Life. Every organization on campus new and old was at the fair representing their organization by sharing what they were about and trying to recruit new members. I had a table cloth and some candy to give out as well as an informational flier about the organization. Be prepared to share what your organization is about and it's mission quickly. Also you must have a sign-up sheet readily available with their email, name, and year so that you can follow up with them afterwards by thanking them for stopping by and sharing when your next event, outing, or Bible study will be.

4. Get Organized and Start Planning

Start brainstorming ideas for your organization. What exactly will y'all do? Have Bible studies, do community service, go to church together. When will y'all meet? Once a week, Once every other week, what day of the week. Where will y'all meet? On campus, off campus, what building on campus, what room. How will you go about securing a meeting place?

Let's re-cap the steps to getting your college organization started. After getting the green light from God you need to first get approval from the organization and the college. Secondly, start your social media accounts to connect with students on your campus. Third, continue to promote offline by registering for your colleges student activities fair. Lastly, plan your calender for the semester which includes events, dates, times, and locations.

What organization would you like to start on your college campus?

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© Miss TierraneyMaira Gall