Clubs and Organizations

Clubs and Organizations

While the academic aspect of the college experience takes place inside the classroom, the Office of Campus Events promotes co-curricular activities that occur outside the classroom. Many interesting and exciting opportunities for student involvement through student organizations, campus events, leadership development, conferences, and much more are offered. Students are encouraged to add to their collegiate experience by proposing new clubs, organizations, participating in educational programs, and creating new events.

Therefore, the Office of Campus Events strives to support students by providing opportunities for the enhancement of academic, cultural, social, and recreational aspects of student life. Located in The Downbeat Student Center, the Campus Events staff are integrally involved with much of campus life, performances and programs and supporting the students holistically along their college journey.

Student Government Association (SGA)

The Student Government Association serves as a voice of the students to the faculty and administration. Students can get involved through their organizations and committees. All recognized clubs and organizations fall under the jurisdiction of the Student Government Association (SGA).

The SGA is the elected representative student body of the campus and is responsible for creating many of the policy-making decisions that affect clubs, organizations and student life. The SGA consists of a variety of positions from a member at large to committee chairs and is overseen by the Office of Campus Events. Email campusevents@ftc.edu for more information.

Planning Events

 College students should strive to get involved in campus life. By doing so, you learn how to get things done on campus, explore new subjects, challenge yourself to try new things, and take leadership opportunities.

Read below about how to plan an event at Five Towns College. The process is not too involved but it does involve collaboration among fellow students, consulting with staff, and a certain degree of concentration to build a concept into a stimulating and exciting event that will create enthusiasm and energize campus life.

A few key points:

  • Start planning early
  • Anticipate discussion and review with staff and students
  • Your initial concept may change but be flexible
  • Stay focused on your goal and seek assistance if needed

Contact campusevents@ftc.edu for questions or concerns related to planning events.

Here are some planning guidelines:

5 WEEKS BEFORE THE EVENT: CREATING A CONCEPT

LEARNING OUTCOMES AND GOALS

Just like anything else that takes place at the College, events serve an educational purpose and must reflect the mission and objectives of the College and the Office of Campus Events. We offer a number of resources to guide event planning to meet these goals.

SMASH Model

The SMASH Model represents the different dimensions of events that are held at Five Towns College.

Social: This dimension creates a sense of community within the college. These programs should have intrinsic value, such as stress relief, and provide opportunities for group interaction and fun. Social programs create opportunities for the community to bond and create new relationships.

Multicultural: This dimension emphasizes skills that enable one to recognize, appreciate, and accept differences in others. These differences may be ethnic or cultural, or they may be differences in lifestyle or values. This includes awareness of racism, sexism, heterosexism, ageism, and disabilities. Differences also include variation in family income, city vs. farm community, large family vs. only child, etc.

Academic: This dimension emphasizes skills involved in supporting students’ educational success. These programs and resources that students may access to enhance their learning, study strategies and professional development.

Service: This dimension seeks to develop, promote and implement community service opportunities for and with the community. Students are supported and challenged to contribute to the greater good of our community, whether on campus or society at large. Through service projects, students also are made aware of the needs of real people, as well as the richness and joy of responding to those needs.

Health & Wellness: This dimension focuses on maintaining a balance in all the different dimensions of student lives. Health is generally defined as living a healthy lifestyle. Wellness is about balance, variety, pleasure, living in the moment, and about connecting the mind, body and spirit.

Student Learning Curriculum

As each major and course have a curriculum that outlines the competencies that students will gain from their study, we have adopted a set of competencies that students can gain from participating in co- curricular programs. The Curriculum is comprised of three goals, each of which offers 24 distinct learning outcomes. The learning goals are:

Personal Development: This goal recognizes the significance of providing learning opportunities that prioritize the development of students’ personal foundations and competencies. Skills for wellness, independence, academic achievement, communication, and a sense of self contribute to students’ college and lifelong success. Students who achieve these learning outcomes will be more prepared to live independently, engage in beneficial social experiences, and achieve goals congruent with their core identities.

Community Connections: This goal focuses on providing learning opportunities that enhance students’ abilities to positively contribute and participate in a diverse living-learning community. Key competencies include the development of a sense of belonging, understanding of community norms, skills for inclusive living and learning, and civic engagement experiences. Students who are successful in attaining these competencies can effectively contribute as educated citizens in a democratic society.

Career Development: This goal encompasses skills and competencies that foster students’ career development and the ability to integrate their talents into meaningful action and projects. The key competencies consist of leadership development, lifelong learning skills, professional development, and the formation of a personal network. Students who achieve these competencies will be effective in their career and vocational pursuits.

 

DETERMINING A BUDGET

If an event will include food, prizes, decorations, guest speakers/performers, special equipment, or any other items that will need to be purchased, proposals must include a detailed outline of what items/services are being requested. For significantly expensive items, they must be carefully reviewed and vetted against comparable items to ensure that money is being spent purposefully and will add value to the overall purpose of the event.

A detailed budget proposal should include the following:

  • Name/description of each item to be purchased
  • Stores/websites (including links) where items will be purchased from
  • Cost of each individual item to be purchased
  • Estimated total cost of all items

4 WEEKS BEFORE THE EVENT: SEEKING APPROVAL

  • COMPLETE AN EVENT PLANNING FORM

An Event Planning Form organizes the concept for your event into one cohesive document that can be presented for approval. This form includes a detailed description, learning outcomes, budget projections, the resources necessary, and a sample flyer for the event.

Clubs/Organizations and students seeking to host campus-wide events may submit Event Planning Forms to the Office of Campus Events and Student Government Association for review/approval.

Resident Assistants and students seeking to host events for the residential community may submit Event Planning Forms to the Office of Residence Life and Residence Hall Association for review/approval.

SUBMIT A FACILITY USE APPLICATION

After your event concept and budget has been approved by one of the groups above, the next step is securing a date, time, and location for the event. The Calendar team reviews all events/activities at the College to ensure that programs are scheduled thoughtfully and with respect to the partners involved in supporting events at the College. The more departments/resources that will be required to support an event, more advance planning will be required to help an event be successful.

When requesting the use of spaces such as the PAC, Gymnasium, and Upbeat Café, we encourage groups to submit a Facility Use Application no less than two – three months before the event is scheduled for consideration and planning.

The Facility Use Application is available on the College website: https://www.ftc.edu/facility-use-application- institutional-events-calendar-approval/  

2-3 WEEKS BEFORE THE EVENT: COORDINATING RESOURCES

WORKING WITH CAMPUS PARTNERS

The importance of early planning is for the many different departments across the College that provide event support in addition to their regular services and operations. If an event will require any level of support from departments, please refer to the sections below for guidance and direction.

Business Office

If a budget has been approved for an event, the Business Office assists in coordinating contracts with vendors, issuing checks for the purchase of supplies, and organizing reimbursements.

In the event that a vendor/agency is providing contracted services for an event, no less than three (3) prices for the services requested must be provided for review and consideration. Please consult the Office of Campus Events and Business Office for further guidance.

For outside performers/speakers, The Office of Campus Events will assist in coordinating a “Performer Agreement Form”. Performers/speakers will need to complete a W-9 Form to submit to the Business Office.

For individual expenditures over $500, please consult the Business Office for further guidance.

If a gift card is being issued as a prize at an event, the Office of Campus Events will provide a “Gift Card Verification Form”. Recipients must sign this form acknowledging receipt of the gift card.

Check Requests take a minimum of three (3) weeks to process with the Business Office. A “Disbursement Request Form” must be submitted with the approved event planner, detailed budget, and a copy of the event flyer. Itemized receipts (receipts that list each individual item with its price) must be obtained for all items purchase. The receipts must match the amount spent from the check issued, or the host will be held responsible for paying the difference. If the amount spent is greater than the approved budget amount, the Business Office will not reimburse the additional monies spent. If the amount spent is less than the approved budget amount, exact change for the difference must be provided to the Business Office with receipts. All receipts/change for checks given must be submitted by no later than two (2) business days after an event.

In the event that a check is not available prior to an event, another option is to spend money out of pocket and submit for reimbursement following the event. No individual student may spend over $100 of their own money for an event. Reimbursements must include itemized receipts for all items purchased, a copy of the event flyer, and a copy of the event attendance in order to be submitted. Receipts and associated information must be submitted by no later than two (2) business days after an event. Reimbursement checks typically take three (3) weeks to process.

Food Service

In addition to providing daily meals in the Upbeat Café, FTC Food Service provides catering service ranging from packaged snacks and beverages to fully catered multi-course menus. Those seeking catering for events must

submit a “Catering Request Form” no less than two (2) weeks prior to an event. The Director of Food Service is regularly available to consult and discuss options for menu items.

Outside restaurants/vendors should only be utilized for specialized items/menus that FTC Food Service cannot accommodate.

Facilities

FTC Facilities/Maintenance can assist in setting up a space with equipment such as tables, chairs, and additional trashcans. For larger events, we recommend providing a diagram of the space indicating the desired placement and arrangement of these items. The Office of Campus Events can provide blank diagrams of several campus spaces for use in accomplishing this.

Our custodial staff works daily to maintain the cleanliness of campus facilities. Events present an additional burden on accomplishing this task. We ask that all event hosts take every measure possible to clean up after events to assist in this effort.

Audio

The Audio Department assists in providing live sound support for musical performances, open mic events, and speakers throughout the academic year.

When seeking to feature live performances at an event, hosts will need to provide clear information about the content of performances. This information must be provided no less than two (2) weeks before an event. This includes:

  • A full set list of all performers.
  • The number of vocalists and individual instruments for each individual performer.
  • A phone/computer with tracks for vocalists that are singing to a pre-recorded backing.

Depending on the nature of the performance, the Audio Department may request a consultation prior to the event. The Office of Campus Events will assist in coordinating this meeting.

Production

The Film/Video Division assists in recording a number of signature events throughout the course of the academic year. The availability of a film crew is limited and made available for events where a demonstrated purpose for the recording is expressed.

To this effort, events that are seeking film coverage may submit an “FTC Productions Request Sheet” to the Film/Video Division no less than two (2) weeks prior to an event. Submitting a request does not guarantee approval. If approved, the host is responsible for working closely with the editing team to finish the film and crews will only be available on a volunteer basis.

ADVERTISE THE EVENT

With the event approved, it is now time to get the word out to the community so that people are aware the event is taking place. A variety of methods can be utilized to promote events, but at minimum, a flyer is required for events. All flyers should include the following information:

  • Name of the program
  • Hostname/organization
  • Date, time, and location
  • Short description
  • FTC logo

 

Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator are platforms that can be used to produce high-quality designs. For those who do not have access or technical skill in these programs, flyers can be created using the tools available in the MS Office suite – such as Publisher, PowerPoint, or Word. There are also a number of web-based platforms, such as Canva, which provide easy to edit templates. The Office of Campus Events will also serve as a resource to assist in designing flyers.

Once a flyer has been reviewed and approved, The Office of Campus Events will assist in promoting events in print, on campus television screens, social media, and event calendars. You may also consider utilizing WFTU radio announcements and in-class announcements to promote events.

THE WEEK OF THE EVENT: PREPARING FOR SUCCESS

PREPARING FOR THE DAY OF THE EVENT

It’s important to visualize the event before it takes place. Understanding the space, the set-up, attendees’ movement, and the flow of the program are important for all those who will be involved in running it. Try to consider the following when preparing for an event:

  • How long will set-up take? Event planners often underestimate the amount of time setting up a space takes. It is important to consider whether tables/chairs need to be arranged, decorations need to be set up, presenters/performers need time to test out staging or microphones and to account for the people necessary to assist in those tasks.
  • Where will attendees enter the space? This is an ideal space to place someone who can welcome attendees, sign them in to the event, and provide instructions.
  • Where will food be placed? It is ideal to place food as far away from the entrance as possible so that attendees feel less inclined to just take food and leave. Ensure that attendees will be able to line up if necessary. Consider having someone monitor the food to ensure that each attendee receives a fair portion.
  • What is the flow of the event? If speakers/performers will be introduced, a presentation will be given, or attendees will engage in a group activity a script, outline of the program, or information helps a host and an organization all understand how the program is progressing and moving.

 

DURING THE EVENT

As an event begins, a host’s responsibility is to ensure that the program runs according to plan and that attendees are enjoying their experience. If a team is supporting/managing the event, make it a point to check-in on each aspect of the event periodically. Ensure that the support team has everything they need to effectively manage their area of responsibility. If there are multiple performers, stay one step ahead so that while one act is on stage, the next act is ready to go on.

 

Check-in with attendees as well.

They can provide vital feedback through their experience about the aspects of the event that fit the intended vision and missed opportunities as well. Don’t forget to enjoy the moment as well! After all the hard work of planning an event, take the opportunity to enjoy what’s taking place.

 

AT THE CONCLUSION OF THE EVENT

At the conclusion of an event, it is important to thank attendees for coming. This is also a chance to let people know about upcoming events and other ways to get involved with an organization, department, or other initiative on campus. Take the opportunity to also thank the groups and departments that helped make the event possible: facilities staff, audio engineers, performers, speakers, and whoever else helped make the event possible.

As attendees leave the event, the host(s) is responsible for ensuring that any garbage or other materials left behind are cleaned up. Any resources, supplies, or food left over at the end of the program should be cleaned up and safely stored until they can be returned or otherwise secured for future use.

Hosts are responsible for the spaces and supplies used. Misuse or mishandling of spaces and supplies can result in losing the privilege to use these resources again in the future.

1-2 DAYS AFTER THE EVENT: ASSESSMENT

RETURNING RESOURCES

Following the event, attendance records must be submitted to The Office of Campus Events or Office of Residence Life. Any leftover decorations, packaged non-perishable food, or other reusable items must also be returned to The Office of Campus Events for use at future programs. Serving equipment provided by FTC Food Service must be returned to the Upbeat Café.

 

All receipts/change for checks issued by the Business Office must be submitted by no later than two (2) business days after an event. If a check was not issued, all receipts and associated information (event flyer, attendance record, and a description of the items purchased) must be submitted for reimbursement by no later than two (2) business days after the event. Reimbursement checks typically take three (3) weeks to process. Any money spent over the approved budget for the event will not be reimbursed.

 

EVALUATE THE EVENT

Assessment is an important aspect of our work. It is a demonstration of our successes, our opportunities to strengthen our services, and a snapshot used to demonstrate the need for additional resources. Many events are repeated each semester or academic year, and assessment after each event can lead towards improving the program for the future.

The Office of Institutional Research & Assessment can offer support to develop purposeful assessment/survey materials.

All events are required to report program attendance by having attendees sign-in. The Office of Campus Events provides Attendance Sheets that can be utilized for this purpose. Below are some additional considerations for evaluating events. Recognize that both attendees and planners have unique perspectives that contribute valuable feedback.

  • Were the stated goals for this event met? What specific aspects of the event addressed the goals and how did attendees demonstrate that they attained/achieved these goals?
  • What went well during the event? If this event were hosted again in the future, how would you build upon this success?
  • What didn’t go as planned during the event? If this event were hosted again in the future, how would you address these aspects?
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