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Student Organizations and Campus Programming
- Why should I get involved on campus?
- What kinds of organizations are there?
- How do I get information about a specific organization?
- How do I find the student organization that is right for me?
- What is the time commitment for being involved in an organization?
- What is the difference between a club sport and a recreation program?
- I'm bored. What is there to do on campus?
- What are some of the best Wittenberg events?
- How can I find out about what events are happening?
- What is there to do at the Student Center?
1. Why should I get involved on campus?
There are so many reasons to get involved during your time at Wittenberg! Involvement will allow you to meet new people and make friends, will connect you to countless university and community resources, and will make the time you spend outside of the classroom at Wittenberg one-of-a-kind. You might choose opportunities to engage on campus that compliment your academic program of study OR you might choose an organization or activity different than anything you've ever done before. Whatever your passion or interest, countless opportunities exist. Plus, involved students have better grades, are more likely to graduate, and are more marketable when seeking out internships or jobs. So, how will you get involved?
2. What kinds of organizations are there?
Currently, there are more than 100 student organizations and activities at Wittenberg. As you're navigating opportunities for involvement, it is easiest to think about them in genres. Eleven genres of student orgs exist, including:
- Academic Organizations
- Club Sport & Recreation Organizations
- Coordinating & Governance Organizations (includes Student Senate, Union Board, class councils and Residence Hall Association)
- Faith-Based Organizations
- Fraternity & Sorority Organizations
- Honor Societies & Honorary Organizations
- Intercultural Organizations
- Media Organizations
- Performance Organizations
- Service Organizations
- Special Interest Organizations (everything from the Role-Playing Guild to activist groups)
For a list of all student organizations or to see what specific organizations fit in each genre, visit the Student Involvement website by clicking here.
3. How do I get information about a specific organization?
There are many ways to get involved with a student organization. One way is to attend the Student Involvement Fair at the beginning of each semester. Student organizations set up tables with information and have officers on hand to answer questions. This is a fun way to see what opportunities are available, meet student organization members, and find something that sparks your interest. You can also complete the Get Involved Form on the Student Involvement website. This allows our staff to personally direct you to an organization that fits your interest!
4. How do I find the student organization that is right for me?
First, ask yourself a few questions: What are your passions and interests? What do you think you might like to study? What is your dream career? What have you always wanted to learn more about? Then match your answers to a few organizations. The best way to find the involvement opportunity that is the right fit is by simply trying a few. Attend the first meeting or event and talk with some of the members. See what works best with your schedule, what community you feel most comfortable in, what activities and events you will enjoy or benefit from the most. Remember, it's okay to stop going if it's not a good fit. That's how everyone else figured it out too. The other thing to remember? Your involvement is almost certain to evolve during your time at Wittenberg. The things you participate in your first year, might not be what you dedicate your time and effort to as a senior. It's to be expected, because we promise you won't be the same person at graduation that you are during New Student Days.
5. What is the time commitment for being involved in an organization?
The time commitment for being involved in a student organization is hard to say definitively because it will depend on how much you choose to invest in the org. As a brand new member, you can probably expect a smaller time commitment which might just include a weekly or biweekly meeting that lasts no more than an hour and a few events here and there. However, if you decide to take on a leadership role with the organization, that might mean more than one weekly meeting and additional time spent behind the scenes planning organization events or activities. Once you have narrowed down the list of orgs. you might like to participate in, ask the officers to help you understand the expectations of members, including the time commitment. And remember to not over commit yourself, even though it might be hard to limit yourself when there are so many great opportunities. There are 168 hours in a seven-day week. If you get 8 hours of sleep a night (which you should!), you're down to 112 hours. Calculate how many hours you will spend in classes, including at least 3 hours outside of class for every hour in class to study. If you spend 16 hours in the classroom and study for 48 additional hours, you're down to 48 hours left in your week and you haven't even accounted for the time to eat meals, take showers, workout, or do any of the other things you require to feel normal. Know yourself and your limits and find involvement opportunities that support you accordingly.
6. What's the difference between a club sport and a recreation program?
Even though we group our club sports and recreation opportunities into the same genre, there can be significant differences between these types of involvement. Typically Recreational Organizations (Outdoors Club, Caving Club, or Swing Dance Club) are structured for the purpose of continued participation in a sport or activity, are intended more for enjoyment versus competition, and allow members to participate as their schedules allow. Club Sports (Rugby, Hockey and Volleyball) have a more competitive focus, schedule games against other colleges and universities, and might even participate in league, regional or national championships. These organizations require more committed and regular participation from members in order to meet eligibility requirements.
7. I'm bored. What is there to do on campus?
In addition to being involved in a student organization, there are lots of events held on campus for you to enjoy. Here are a few suggestions:
Witt Wednesday Series: Sponsored by The Office of Student Involvements and various student organizations, the Witt Wednesday series offers programs every Wednesday night, typically between the hours of 8:00pm-11:00pm, on a variety of topics and themes. With events ranging from live music to comedy to Battleships and Build-a-Tiger, each week is something new and completely free.
Residence Hall Programs: Each hall offers programs throughout the school year sponsored by its Residence Hall Association and RA's who staff each building. Check with your RA to find out what events are happening and when. (PS. Getting involved in RHA is a great way to help plan these events and strengthen your leadership skills! Talk to your RA or Area Coordinator for more information.)
Union Board: Wittenberg's primary programming organization, UB sponsors tons of fun events. Be sure to follow them on Twitter @UnionBoard1, Instagram: wittunionboard, and/or like them on Facebook so you're always up to speed.
Student Organization Events: Almost all events sponsored by student orgs are open to the campus community. The dates, times and locations of these events vary based on the sponsoring org and the featured activity. Sometimes they are even trips off campus. Watch your email for event advertisements and pay attention to flyers and banners in university buildings. (Coming Soon: An event calendar with as many events and activities as we can collect in one place. Stay tuned!)
Witt Series: Sponsored by the university, the Witt Series boasts a selection of cultural activities and speakers. All events are free admission. Last year, authors, playwrights, theologians, historians, and activists spoke on campus. Plus, Lessons and Carols celebrated the Advent and Christmas seasons and the whole campus commemorated Martin Luther King Jr. Day in January.
Founders Pub: Open Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays; Founders has many events throughout the school year, like trivia night and karaoke night, music, comedy, performances, viewing parties for sporting events, dancing, and many more! Click here to lean more about Founders Pub!
Wittenberg Intercollegiate Athletics: Support our Tigers whenever they play at home (or even on the road!). For an up-to-date athletics calendar, visit www.wittenbergtigers.com. Also visit us on Twitter: @WittAthletics as well as Instagram: wittathletics
University Department Events: From the Diversity House to the Womyn's Center to the Hagen Center to events sponsored by academic departments or university offices, there are just too many opportunities to list! Usually you can find these events on the university calendar, but feel free to contact each department directly for more information.
Springfield Events: Beyond the university community, Springfield has a great selection of events and programs that Wittenberg students are invited to attend. Check out the Clark County Convention and Visitor's Bureau calendar at http://www.visitgreaterspringfield.com/ to learn more.
8. What are some of the best Wittenberg events?
While it really depends on who you ask, here are some of the usual answers:
- Hypnotist Jim Wand during New Student Days: August; HPER Arena
- Student Senate's Pizza Taste Off: August in the Student Center
- Student Involvement Fair: August on Alumni Way in front of the Student Center
- Passport to Springfield: September
- Family Weekend: September
- Student Senate's W Day (we can't tell you when because it's a surprise!)
- Homecoming: October
- CBS Unity March: October
- MLK Day of Service: January
- Build-a-Tiger: February
- Battleships: February
- Sibs Weekend: Last weekend of March
- Liberal Arts in Action Celebration: April
- WittFest: 3rd weekend of April
- Commencement: 2nd weekend of May
9. How can I find out what events are happening?
Pay attention to emails, posted flyers and banners around campus, and the university calendar for the latest news and events. Plus, follow The Office of Student Involvement's, Witt's Happening, on Twitter @Witts_Happening or like us on Facebook.
10. What is there to do at the Student Center?
The Benham-Pence Student Center, is the central meeting place for our campus community, is home to many helpful resources, and offers opportunities to have fun and relax. Come here to eat in Post 95 or at the CDR. Hang out in Doppelganger's games room where you can play pool, ping-pong, video games and so much more. Students of any age can visit our on-campus pub, Founders on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays for events on the stage, pub-style food and a full bar (for those over 21). Stop by the Information Desk if you ever have questions or need directions. Visit the computer lab on the lower level to work on projects, check email, or print something before class. Check your mailbox and pick up packages at the Service Center. And be sure to stop by The Office of Student Involvement to meet some pretty incredible students who can help you get connected on campus! Want to know more? The Student Center is open seven days a week from 8 a.m.-1 a.m. so stop by and check it out!
- What will I get from joining a Fraternity or Sorority that I would not get from any other organization?
- How will joining benefit me after college?
- What are the costs and housing obligations involved with membership?
- How will my grades be impacted by sorority/fraternity membership?
- Are hazing and/or alcohol prevalent in fraternities and sororities?
- What is the time commitment involved with membership?
- Will I feel like an outsider if I do not join?
- I'm an athlete, can I go Greek, too?
- Who is actually in charge in each sorority/fraternity?
- How do I become a member?
1. What will I get from joining a fraternity or sorority that I would not get from any other organization?
2. How will joining benefit me after college?
Membership in a Greek organization is a great way to develop life-long skills including working with a variety of personality types, living and managing a house with others, mediating conflict, and effectively communicating in interviews and other career situations. Membership in a sorority or fraternity is a lifelong process that assists its members with re-location needs, networking through alumni chapter involvement and volunteer opportunities with collegiate chapters around the country.
3. What are the costs and housing obligations involved with membership?
Like any national organization, fraternities and sororities have costs of membership. There are semester dues and fees accompanied with membership as well as new member fees that are associated with the first semester of membership. Specific costs can be outlined and more information can be gained from talking with the Financial Vice President of specific organizations.
Some sororities and fraternities have chapter houses on campus and have live-in requirements (usually one or two years starting junior year). If students live in the house, there are room and board fees comparable to campus housing. These costs vary from each chapter but are comparable to non-Greek housing on campus. Again, it is encouraged to inquire about these costs with specific organizations.
4. How will my grades be impacted by sorority/fraternity membership?
Academics are very important to fraternities and sororities that is why first year students must become academically eligible in their first semester to participate in recruitment second semester. Every chapter has an academic officer that coordinates chapter programs like study hours to promote chapter academic success. Wittenberg's All-Greek GPA has exceeded the All-Campus GPA for the last sixteen years.
5. Are hazing and/or alcohol prevalent in fraternities and sororities?
Sororities and fraternities have established policy prohibiting hazing and alcohol abuse.. While alcohol use is present, fraternities and sororities attend seminars on responsible alcohol use and implements processes for alcohol to be used responsibly when permitted. Wittenberg University and every national fraternity or sorority have strict anti-hazing policies, if you suspect you or someone you know has been hazed or harassed, you should report it by calling 937-327-7820. Additional resources and reporting options can be found online here.
6. What is the time commitment involved with membership?
The amount of time involved varies by chapter and can change throughout your time as a member. The first semester of membership can seem very intensive as new members use this time to go through the chapter's new member education period. Throughout your time as an active member, your time commitment can shift as you decide whether or not to take on a leadership role in the chapter, serve on committees, or become involved with the Wittenberg Panhellenic Council. Each chapter has weekly meeting and other mandatory events which are planned in advance. Chapters are very understanding and celebrate member's involvement in outside activities like sports, work, clubs, and academic obligations.
7. Will I feel like an outsider if I don't join?
No! While a large percentage of students are involved with Greek life, a majority of students are not. There are a lot of opportunities to get involved without being a member of a Greek-letter organizations and fraternity/sorority members are often a part of other organizations as well.
8. I'm an athlete, can I go Greek too?
Yes! Over 30% of the fraternity and sorority community is made up of athletes. It is best to identify whether Greek membership is something you individually can handle on top of your sports commitment and academic obligations. If going through recruitment in the spring would conflict with your season, there are usually opportunities to go through recruitment in the fall as well.
9. Who is actually in charge in each sorority/fraternity?
Fraternities and sororities are mainly self-governing organizations. Students elect their own officers to leadership positions and are able to make decisions for the success of the organization. The houses of each organization are owned by "House Corps Boards" that manages funds, collects rent, pays bill, and maintains the property. Each group is governed by national organizations which establishes chapter regulations and offers advice and direction through professional staff. Additionally, the university employs a masters-level professional full-time to support fraternities and sororities.
10. How do I become a member?
During the spring semester, the governing fraternity/sorority councils sponsor "Formal Recruitment." Formal Recruitment is a series of formal events that provide interested students with the opportunity to learn more about each chapter and meet members. It should be noted that participation and registration of recruitment is not an offer nor a guarantee of membership. Membership selection is at the sole discretion of chapters and their members. With that, Informal recruitment is held in the fall for sophomore students and up.