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Student Organizations Across Campus Cater to Athletic, Academic and Participants’ Special Interests

PhotoTianna Halfaday and Rachel Dupre were 2021 National Collegiate Disc Golf champions and runners-up in the 2022 NCGDG event. The men’s and women’s teams are one of approximately 200 registered student organizations on the Ferris State University campus.

Maintaining an avenue for athletic competition, furthering personal and academic interests, or simply developing a way to meet and enjoy free time with others characterize a few reasons approximately 200 registered student organizations exist on the Ferris State University campus.

In the Center for Student Involvement, Activities Coordinator Nick Smith said nearly 3,000 Ferris students are in one or more RSOs. 

“The advisor’s role is to offer a small amount of consult in these student-driven groups while serving as their university liaison,” Smith said. “Nearly all of these positions are volunteer efforts, where everyone involved can follow their passions, in an opportunity to foster student growth, inclusion and goodwill.”

There are 39 RSOs focused on a special interest, with foreign language and culture, along with board games, anime and fashion design as examples. Twenty-nine club sports are active, along with a council to oversee that collection of teams representing the university in a wide variety of associations and regional competitions. There are 16 academic honor societies where leadership or defined subject areas or career pursuits are developed or encouraged.

“To be a registered student organization, there must be five or more members to the group. An advisor from the faculty or university staff must be secured. A small presentation to our Student Leadership and Activities Advisory Council is required of the prospective RSO,” Smith said. “The members of SLAAC consider the proposal, with the ability to approve or deny the request.”

Even with around 200 of these groups established across campus, Smith said ingenuity or an amount of collective wisdom might bring on a handful of new organization proposals each year.

“The latest RSO to join the fold is a group who gathers to shoot clay targets,” Smith said. “Ben Upham, an associate professor in the School of Automotive and Heavy Equipment, was really the person behind the idea, so he found students who were also interested in this pursuit, which led to a successful presentation and approval of their RSO.”

For more information about registered student organizations at Ferris, contact Smith by email or by calling (231) 591-2140.