Start an Organization

Let's Start a New Organization!

We’re glad you’re interested in starting a new group! Please be aware that this process is extensive and requires a substantial commitment from you. From start to finish it could take several weeks or even months to get a new group officially recognized.

Benefits of Recognition

Recognized Student Organizations can take advantage of a variety of benefits:

  • MU Engage web page for the organization.
  • Reserve University facilities at little to no cost.
  • Opportunity to receive student fee funding. Student organization funding is generated through student fees.
  • Access to exclusive resources like screen printing, professional design services, ORG office and storage space and more.

Recognition Process

In the 2016-2017 Academic Year, the Organization Resource Group began using a new recognition process for prospective student organizations. Instead of rolling recognition, as has existed in the past, we are utilizing recognition periods.

There will be four New Student Organization Information Sessions during each recognition cycle. There will be two cycles during the Fall Semester and one during the Spring. Individuals interested in starting a new student organization will be required to attend one of these sessions in order to progress through the recognition process.

Upcoming Sessions 

On the Organization Resource Group’s MU Engage is a form titled New Student Organization Application. This application will be open for two weeks during each recognition period.  When the application opens, you will submit the form, attaching all necessary documentation and materials. This form must then be approved by the prospective organization’s advisor by the application deadline.

Your materials will be presented to the Student Affairs Committee, a standing committee on campus, by the ORG Vice-Chair of Administration. The Student Affairs Committee will look to ensure that a prospective organization does not too heavily overlap with other organizations, that there isn’t a large amount of risk associated with the organization, and that the group’s proposed constitution meets University standards. The Student Affairs Committee will then make a recommendation to the Dean of Students.

If you are approved by the Student Affairs Committee and the Dean of Students, you will work with the ORG Office to set up an Engage portal and begin work on your annual training requirements. These include annual administrative training (finance training as well, if your organization will seek ORG funds), and annual registration requests completed on Engage. If you are denied by the Student Affairs Committee, you will be contacted by the ORG Vice-Chair of Administration.

Visualization of steps 1 through 5 listed above

2023-2024 Recognition Periods

Applications open at 8 a.m. on the first date and close at 5 p.m. on the last date.

Period Dates
Period 1 Aug. 27 – Sept. 8, 2023
Period 2 Oct. 22 – Nov. 3, 2023
Period 3 Jan. 28, 2024 – Feb. 9, 2024

Recognition Period Frequently Asked Questions

Information Sessions

Although it is preferred that all questions regarding your prospective organization be answered at an in-person meeting, communication may be completed via email or phone call. However, if the Vice-Chair of Administration does not receive answers to questions, or if they feel the answers are insufficient, the Vice-Chair of Administration has the right to postpone presenting your organization to the Student Affairs Committee until the following recognition period.

Attending a New Student Organization Information Session is required because it gives vital details regarding the recognition process. These sessions will serve as an introduction to both the recognition process and the Organization Resource Group (ORG) as a whole.

If an organization loses its recognition status, a representative must attend an information session to ensure they understand the recognition process in its entirety. A thorough understanding of the process will ensure that students can complete the required steps in an efficient manner.


The new student organization application will ask for basic information about your idea for a new student organization. Among other items, the form asks:

  • What is the purpose of this organization?
  • Why are you interested in starting an organization?
  • Are there any other organizations on campus that share a similar purpose?
  • Has your organization ever been recognized on the MU campus?
  • Is your prospective organization affiliated with a national organization?

If your prospective organization does not submit an application or if an incomplete application is submitted, your prospective organization will not be considered for recognition at the Student Affairs Committee meeting. Complete applications are due on Engage by 5 p.m. on each designated deadline.

You must submit recognition materials for your prospective organization in the two weeks following each information session to ensure that all materials are submitted in a timely manner to be presented to the Student Affairs Committee. The Office of Student Organizations recommends that students begin to prepare these items prior to the submission period.

Per the Guidelines for Recognized Student Organizations, all prospective student organizations must have a unique purpose from any existing organizations.

The Vice-Chair of Administration will work with your organization and the Student Affairs Committee to ensure the committee reviews your organization in a timely manner; furthermore, the Vice-Chair of Administration will notify your organization of any requirements needed from the offices listed above.

Per the Guidelines for Recognized Student Organizations, the Student Affairs Committee will only consider organizations that have an advisor. Please contact the Vice-Chair of Administration if you have difficulties finding a faculty or staff member to serve as your organization’s advisor.

The Vice-Chair of Administration will help your prospective organization in determining whether or not additional information is needed from either the Club Sports or Greek Life Offices. This classification is based upon the purpose and activities of your organization. Although all prospective organizations are required to go through the same recognition process, the Club Sports or Greek Life offices may have additional requirements.

Yes. The prospective organization’s advisor must approve the New Student Organization Application submission before the application closes. This exact date for each recognition period can be found in the chart above.

To receive recognition, prospective organizations must comply with the standards set forth by the Office of Student Organizations when composing a constitution. This ensures that all organizations are held to fair and consistent standards and ensures that all recognized organizations embody the values set forth by the University of Missouri. Please click here to see a checklist of items required in a constitution.

Review Period

After submitting an application during the two-week window, the following week will be a review week. The Vice-Chair of Administration will review the submissions and contact applicants if the Organization Resource Group (ORG) needs clarification. Applicants do not have any responsibilities during this time; however, they should continue to check their email in case clarification is needed.

If the Student Affairs Committee tables your organization’s recognition status, you will have a chance to respond to any questions or concerns that came up regarding your organization. The Vice-Chair of Administration will meet with you to discuss these questions and allow you to work out any issues. Once you provide clarification or updated information, the Vice-Chair of Administration will work with your organization and the Student Affairs Committee to ensure the committee reviews your organization in a timely manner.

After Recognition/Maintaining Recognition

Newly-recognized student organizations may not receive funding from the Organization Resource Group (ORG) during their first semester of recognition. From the time your organization receives recognition from the Student Affairs Committee, sixteen (16) weeks must pass before your organization is permitted to apply for funding from ORG.

To maintain recognition, within the academic year, student organizations must complete the annual requirements set forth by the Guidelines for Recognized Student Organizations. Recognized student organizations must update their Engage portal annually by completing a registration request. Additionally, organizations must attend an Administrative Training session.

Please contact the Organization Resource Group (ORG) if your organization’s membership falls below 10 members. The office will provide an organization in this position with a 30-day grace period to search for and recruit new members. The Dean of Students must approve exceptions to this rule.

Please contact us if a recognized student organization loses its affiliation with its parent organization. The Organization Resource Group (ORG) will work with organizations in this position by offering a 30-day grace period to rectify the situation.

Once a prospective organization is approved by the Dean of Students, the Organization Resource Group will create a portal for each new organization. At this time, the newly recognized student organization will have 30 days to complete a registration request and complete the portal. If the new organization does not complete the portal in 30 days, the new organization will forfeit its recognition status and will need to complete the recognition process again to become officially-recognized by the university.