Consider applying for Unfunded group status if you want to start a group which needs merely recognition, publicity and reservation access, but can serve as the basis of a community for a group of students. An Unfunded group has the same rights to space reservation (CAC, office space, and storage) and publicity as a Funded or Sponsored group, but is not eligible to apply for funding from the UA Funding Board or the GSC Funding Board. Note that an Unfunded group can still apply for the merit-based LEF/ARCADE funding and any other funding source on campus they qualify for. This is a potentially permanent status, however groups may request to change to Funded Status by submitting a funding status change request through the group application form. This can happen beginning one semester after the group's recognition and no more than once a year.
The general criteria for MIT student group recognition are:
- At least 50% of active/voting members are MIT students;
- The president and treasurer are MIT students;
- Membership consists of at least 5 student members;
- Follows the MIT Non-Discrimination Clause;
- Demonstrates uniqueness from existing student groups.
Please refer to the compare privileges page for detailed information.
Consider applying for MIT-funded status if you want to start a new student group which requires and merits funding from one of the student government-administered funding boards (for undergraduate groups, the UA Funding Board; and for graduate groups, the GSC Funding Board). Although the boards vary slightly in policy, in general groups that merit funding are those which promote student life for a significant portion of campus, which are significantly unique from existing groups and have a purpose that cannot be fulfilled by other existing student groups, and which have established a track record of excellence. MIT-funded status is the hardest to obtain, but also gives full access to Student Activities resources.
A sponsor-funded group is one which is directly supported by an MIT department, program, or office of MIT, as well as existing student groups. A sponsor-funded group is one which is directly linked with its sponsor and therefore expects to obtain most of its resources from there. ASA recognition allows the group to be independent in every-day operations, with the ability to reserve space, have a recognized government, and use the MIT name.
For example, if a sponsor-funded group is directly linked with an MIT Department, the department provides funding, office space and publicity support, but the group is completely run by students.
Another example is a coalition of existing groups that want to have a structured way of working together. The coalition can formally exist to reserve rooms on campus for large events, apply for LEF/ARCADE funding, and have a set of representatives different from the individual groups. But the allocations of other resources still depends on the sponsoring groups; further, the existence of the coalition depends on the continued recognition of the sponsoring groups.