Registered Student Organizations 101

The University of Houston defines its working relationship with Registered Student Organizations (RSOs) in the Student Handbook through the Dean of Students (DOS) Office.

Organizations Policy –Retrieved from: http://publications.uh.edu/content.php?catoid=17&navoid=4918

Purpose of RSOs

The University recognizes:

  1. The importance of organized student activities as an integral part of the total educational program of the University;
  2. That college learning experiences are enriched by student organizational activity; and
  3. That organizations provide a framework for students within which they may develop their own special talents and interests.

All student organizations must register annually with the Center for Student Involvement and must then comply with the procedures and policies regarding registration as set forth.

The Dean of Students Office recognizes the role of Greek Coordinating Councils in establishing and upholding policies for member groups. However, membership in said councils does not exempt fraternities and sororities from judicial referrals to the Dean of Students Office for violations of Student Life Policies, including Registered Student Organizations Policies.

The University Hearing Board, with the approval of the Dean of Students, delegates to Greek coordinating councils general supervision over those chapters of social sororities and fraternities which choose to be members of these councils.

The term “general supervision” shall include all the duties, powers and responsibilities exercised by the Greek coordinating council prior to the adoption of this policy, with the provision that membership in the Greek coordinating councils is optional with the local chapter.

It is understood that the Greek coordinating councils and their member groups will operate under the provisions of the Student Life Policies, including the Organizations Policy.

Privileges Given to RSOs

Registered Student Organizations exist on the university campus on the assumption that their activities and programs contribute to the educational, civic, and social development of the students involved. Registration of a campus organization does not imply university sanction of the organization or its activities. Registration is simply an opportunity to organize on the university campus and may be withdrawn by the University Hearing Board if an organization is found in violation of any federal, state or local laws, or university regulation or policy.

Use of the University's Name
Organizations may not use the name of the University of Houston or an abbreviation of the name of the University of Houston as part of its name, except to designate location or chapter, nor advertise or promote events in a manner which suggests that the function is sponsored or sanctioned by the University unless the event is formally cosponsored with an administrative or academic unit of the University. For example, “University of Houston Cougar Fan Club” is not acceptable. The acceptable format is “Cougar Fan Club at the University of Houston.”

Rights and Responsibilities of Registered Student Organizations
Rights - Registered Student Organizations may:

  1. Use university facilities (subject to pertinent regulations, proper scheduling procedures, and prior needs of the University itself);
  2. Invite off-campus speakers and artists to appear for regularly scheduled meetings and assemblies. Meetings and speakers must be scheduled in accordance with proper procedures and university policies;
  3. Distribute literature relating to the organization's purpose and activities in those areas authorized by the current posting policies;
  4. Sponsor profit-making activities and solicit funds for organizational activities in accordance with university regulations;
  5. Apply for office/carrel space. Applications are available to registered student organizations in the spring of each year.
  6. Request funding for an organizational event or program. (Subject to the rules and regulations of the appropriate funding and programming board.)

Responsibilities - It is the responsibility of every Registered Student Organization and/or its representatives to:

  1. Carry out its activities and conduct itself and/or himself/herself within the student organization's own constitution, all applicable local, state, and federal laws, and all university regulations and policies;
  2. Anticipate, provide for, and promptly meet its legitimate financial obligations;
  3. Act accordingly in the best interests of its members and the University;
  4. Comply with all organization information distributed through Center for Student Involvement mailboxes;
  5. Take reasonable precautions for the safety and comfort of participants at organization events; and
  6. Notify the appropriate advisor in the Center for Student Involvement of any and all changes in the organization's officers/contact persons, addresses, telephone numbers, or constitution.

Organizations Policy – Rights and Responsibilities of Registered Student Organizations

Additional Benefits
In addition, Registered Student Organizations are welcome to do the following:

  1. Establish a profile on UH Get Involved website
  2. Participate in university events such as Cat’s Back, Homecoming, New Student Orientation, etc.
  3. Eligible to receive reduced advertising rates in The Cougar
  4. Receive consultation from the Center for Student Involvement on risk management or event planning
  5. Apply for awards and honors presented at the Campus Leaders Ceremony
  6. Distribute literature, flyers, posters, banners, and organizational material according to the posting policies
  7. Eligible to use university services and resources such as information technology and mail services
  8. Faculty and staff advisors can receive training and consultation from the Center for Student Involvement
  9. Apply for funding from the Activities Funding Board and UH Dining Catering Donations

Conduct of Student Organizations

Student groups and organizations may be charged with alleged violations of local, state, and federal laws and/or university policies. A student group or organization and its officers may be held collectively and/or individually responsible when alleged violations occur either during an event sponsored by the organization or by an individual representing or associated with that organization or group. Student Code of Conduct.