Student organizations will have the opportunity to be recognized by the Student Government Association for their hard work in recruitment, participation and philanthropy next semester.
SGA has resurrected an old initiative this semester that will allow student organizations to fill out an application in hopes that they win one of the Registered Student Organization Awards.
“The Awards of Excellence program encourages and recognizes outstanding contributions made to the University of Oklahoma community by Registered Student Organizations. Applications will be made available soon,” according to the SGA website.
“It’s a great way to recognize RSOs who have gone above and beyond for the community, and we just want to thank them,” SGA Vice President Avery Marczewski said. “We’ve noticed that with that ball dropping and that initiative not being carried out that these student organizations weren’t being given the recognition they deserve.”
Jack Schaefer, SGA's assistant director in the department of student organizations, said SGA used to have the awards, but there was a break due to the loss of files needed to create the application.
“We were able to remake the application, so it’s back up again,” Schaefer said.
About 10 or 12 Most Outstanding RSO awards will be given to the best organization, either small, midsize or large, Schaefer said.
“The organizations range from small, with 20 or less members; midsize, with 21-50 members; and large, with 51 or more,” Marczewski said.
Marczewski believes this award, as well as the award for the Outstanding RSO Leader, are prestigious.
“Beyond that, there are awards for best in philanthropy, best in programming and so on,” Schaefer said.
In the past, SGA gave away trophies for the awards, but this semester they haven’t decided on whether to give out trophies, plaques or certificates, Schaefer said.
“I’m not sure if we’re wanting to do the same thing or not, because the winners of the awards won’t actually be decided upon until the spring," Schaefer said. "Early next semester we’ll decide upon what the actual awards will look like."
SGA hopes to work with the Leadership and Volunteerism Office to do an awards ceremony with them, Schaefer said.
“They do a banquet every year, but I don’t think that’s going to happen," Schaefer said. "I’m not sure if there will be a banquet or a ceremony or if we’ll just announce and distribute the trophies. I assume there will be a ceremony, but that is still in the early stages of planning."
Schaefer believes that the awards advocate for participation and recruitment in student organizations.
“I believe that any kind of reward for your performance will definitely encourage organizations to both recruit people and to really try their best,” Schaefer said.
The applications opened on Nov. 2 and will be available until Feb. 12. Marczewski and Schaefer encourage all registered student organizations to apply and be recognized for the work they have done for the university and their community.