Starting an Organization at CNU

CNU is a place where we start new things all the time. Our Registered Student Organizations (RSO) are no exception! We encourage students to express themselves through their involvement and take ownership of their involvement experience. Each year, around 25 new student organizations are founded on campus.

Interested in starting an RSO? First, consider a few questions...

  1. Is there a current recognized CNU organization that shares a similar mission or goal? Can your organization work together with the existing student organization?
  2. Are there adequate university resources (space, funding, potential participants, etc) to support the group’s activities?
  3. Are there significant safety risks associated with activities your organization will sponsor?
  4. How will your organization contribute to the common good at CNU? Will it make our community a better place to be?
  5. Is your organization sustainable? Are there students interested in continuing the organization after you graduate?
  6. Would your organization be considered a Sports or Recreational Club? Contact Will Kramer in recreational services at

Still interested? We can help!

To start the New Student Organization (NSO) recognition process, download the New Student Organization Recognition Checklist and email Katie Winstead Reichner (,  Associate Director of Student Activities to arrange a meeting. This is also a great time to register your New Student Organization on The Compass, CNU's online student organization management system.

Your NSO to-do List

  1. Schedule a meeting with Katie in OSA to review the recognition process.
  2. Recruit and invite a faculty or staff member to serve as your advisor (each RSO is required to have an on-campus advisor). Send them a copy of the advisor contract for their signature.
  3. Begin writing your organization's constitution. This is the user manual for your organization.
  4. Schedule an interest meeting and/or compile a list of interested members. A minimum of 10 members is required for recognition.
  5. Register your Organization on The Compass, CNU's online involvement management system.
  6. Is your organization part of a larger, national or regional organization? Contact your national office to ensure you're completing their requirements.
  7. Contact Frank Council, Director of Student Activities to schedule your Finance 101 meeting.
  8. Coordinate with Katie to schedule your New Student Organization Orientation meeting to complete the recognition process.

Required Documents for Recognition

  1. Your Organization Constitution (Constitution Guidelines/Sample Constitution)

  2. A signed Advisor Contract

New Student Organizations must complete all necessary steps for recognition before they will be permitted to hold meetings, events, or elections. The recognition process takes place on a rolling basis, and can begin or end at any point during the year. Groups can complete this process in as little as two weeks, or as long as a semester. If a group goes longer than one semester without completing the recognition process, the group will be considered inactive and will need to begin the process again.

Funding Information & Guidelines

Record keeping and money management are big part of running a successful club or organization. And don't forget...we are here to help you if you have questions, concerns or just need some help getting your money matters organized.

The Office of Student Activities and the Student Activities Fee Appropriation Committee takes the responsibility of managing student money very seriously. It is our obligation to ensure that student activity fee money is spent responsibly and within the policies of the University and the state and federal laws.

Annual Reports for the Use of Student Fees within the Division of Student Affairs

General Forms

Apply for Small Grant Funding

The Small Grant Fund is available to registered and sponsored organizations in support of events, activities, and student-led programs/initiatives that contribute to the quality of campus life at CNU.


  • Applications are turned in to the Office of Student Activities (DSU 330).
    • When turning in the Small Grant Funding Application packet, you will sign up for a presentation time
  • Small Grant Allocation Meetings are held weekly. The meeting day/time may change without much prior notice.
    • Fall 2014 Small Grant Allocation Meeting - Wednesdays 3-4pm
  • Monday, April 13th - LAST Small Grant Allocation Meeting for Spring 2015

Apply for Conference Funding

The CNU Conference Attendance Support Fund (Conference Fund) is available to any (eligible) student who wants to enhance his/her educational experiences by attending academic, professional and/or organization conferences.

Front End Budget (FEB) Funding

A small number of student organizations will be considered for Front End Budget (FEB) status.  FEB organizations are student organizations whose contributions to the University extend beyond any specific issue/interest and are deemed to have a significant impact on the campus community.

Current Front End Budget Organizations:

  • Campus Activities Board (CAB)
  • Captain's Log
  • Class Councils
  • Multicultural Student Association
  • Student Assembly
  • Student Honor Council

For additional information on Student Organization financial guidelines and to access general forms (deposit, reimbursement) as well as information about travel expenses management, please go to the Office of Student Activities student organization "Financial & Travel" webpage.


Small Grant Funding Information & Guidelines

  • Steps to submitting a complete Small Grant Fund Application

    • Complete the application (be very descriptive)

    • Submit your application to the front desk in the Office of Student Activity (DSU 330)

      • Include current organization budget that highlights expenses and revenue
      • Include a fundraising plan that highlights how revenue/funds will be obtained/raised during the year
    • Sign up for a grant application presentation when you drop off your application.

      • Fall 2014 Small Grant Presentation Meetings - Wednesdays, 3-4pm
  • What are grant application presentations?

    • Presentations are scheduled for all organizations who submit a completed Small Grant Fund Application. You can sign up for a presentation time as soon as you submit your application

  • How do I prepare for a grant presentation?

    • Make sure the person(s) making the presentation is/are knowledgeable about the event being discussed
    • Make sure the person(s) making the presentation is knowledgeable of the CNU student organization financial guidelines and has a working understanding of how the organization manages its finances
    • Make sure to provide the Appropriations Committee with all price quotes of items and why this event is important to the CNU community

    • Print out a copy of the application to bring to the hearing

    • Be as detailed as possible in explaining a line item in your budget. The more information you provide the Appropriations Committee, the more information they can use to help supplement your budget.

  • How does the Appropriations process work?

    • First, the applicant submits an application.

    • After the application is submitted, the entire Appropriations Committee reviews the application and your organization should be able to get the most out of Student Assembly.

    • After the initial review, the Appropriations Committee conducts hearings

    •  After the hearings, a final review is done by the Appropriations Committee

  •  How do I know what is fundable and what isn’t fundable?

    • Click here to look at the guidelines. Use the guidelines when submitting an application

  • What if the event I planned didn’t happen?

    • The money you have been funded will be transferred back to the CNU account

  • Where do I get more information about the reimbursement aspect of it?

    • You can read over the guidelines but if you have specific questions, you can contact Michelle Reed (
    • Please email Andrew Hall ( with any questions.