Student organizations at UMBC contribute to broadening perspectives, opening opportunities, and connecting students’ passions with interests and issues important to members of the campus community and beyond. By starting a student organization, you take on the responsibility of creating a vibrant campus life and fostering change on campus. The steps outlined below will ensure that you are prepared for this role and connected to campus partners and potential collaborators. The recognition process generally takes between two and four months and in some instances longer.

Step 1: Take a look at the current list of 200+ student organizations that already exist at UMBC

We encourage you to think about whether your needs and interests can be met by an existing student organization. There are significant advantages to working within established organizations rather than forming new ones. To learn more about these advantages, please email Tori Heasley at, Coordinator for Student Organizations.

Step 2: Complete Student Organization Application, which you will receive after your meeting. 

Step 3: Set up a meeting with Student Organizations staff to talk about your organization.

Be prepared to discuss the following questions:

  • What was your inspiration for creating this organization?
  • How will your organization contribute to the mission of UMBC?
  • What makes your organization distinct from similar organizations at UMBC?
  • What needs do your organization meet that aren't currently being met?
  • How will your organization attract students to join?
  • How do you plan to develop leadership within your organization?
  • How do you plan to sustain the organization?

Step 4: The Student Organizations Committee (SOC) will meet with your potential advisor.

This will serve as a way to ensure that the advisor is on the same page as the organization. Advisor resources can be found here.

Step 5: Complete the New Student Organization module

Once Step 4 is complete, all officers will have to complete the New Student Organization module. All officers are encouraged to review the module and contribute suggestions and ideas.

In the New Student Organization module, officers will:

  • Learn how great leaders inspire action and create an organization “why” statement
  • Set goals for your organization
  • Create a first year plan

Step 6: The Student Organization Committee (SOC) will review application materials

After the New Student Organization module is completed, the SOC will review all application materials. The SOC might invite you to address any questions/concerns via email or during its weekly meetings.

Step 7: Student Organization Committee makes recommendation for recognition to the Director of Campus Life

If the Director of Campus Life confirms recommendation for recognition, all officers and advisor will receive an official recognition email at which point all privileges of being a recognized student organization will immediately go into effect.

Please contact Student Organizations staff for questions regarding new student organizations.

Recognized organizations will be extended the following services and rights therein including, but not necessarily limited to:

  • Ability to use "UMBC" in the organization's name and advertising,
  • Ability to schedule use of campus space and request campus resources,
  • Privilege of being listed on the Student Life website as a recognized student organizations,
  • Access to other services, benefits, and resources found on the Student Life website, and
  • Eligibility to receive SGA financial subsidy as outlined in the SGA Budget Policy (please note that all deadlines for financial requests must be honored in order to receive potential monies).

Step 8: Attend a follow up meeting with the Vice President for Student Organizations of the SGA (VPSO).

Upon your new organization receiving official recognition, the VPSO will schedule a follow up meeting to check in.

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