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The wrong club of the month

Illustration by Arnie Bermudez
By Jason Poreda
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Monday September 22, 2003

Well, ASUA has managed to do it again it has disappointed every student on campus. It took a very excellent idea giving out a club of the month award, a simple idea that could go a long way to rejuvenate the relationship between the clubs on campus and our student government and managed to trip over it.

Every year, clubs march up to ASUA to find a club advocate and begin the club funding process. Club advocates prepare the club for an appearance in front of the appropriations board, which makes funding recommendations to the senate. If approved, the club is finally entitled to the money they need so desperately.

Sounds simple enough, but more often than not, something goes wrong. This process is the source of the animosity between the two groups.

Funding clubs across campus is the most important thing ASUA does, bar none. The clubs on campus are the lifeline to an involved student community and the money ASUA has is vital, being one of the only sources of revenue most clubs have.

ASUA constantly promises to give more money to smaller clubs and clubs that are getting off the ground in an effort to show the campus at large that they care about the little people.

Unfortunately, recent events tell a different story up in ASUA. The first ASUA club of the month was selected last Wednesday: Chain Gang Junior Honorary.

Jason Poreda

This was flat-out the wrong decision for ASUA. It provides zero benefit to ASUA, the rest of the clubs vying for money and the campus as a whole. Since I heard of the selection for club of the month, I have been trying to piece together the logic that resulted in selecting it.

"Their application was really good, they are part of tons of activities and have a strong history I can't think of any other club that could fill their position here at the UA," said Jennie Collins, ASUA club events coordinator, in the Wildcat last Thursday.

There are a number of things wrong with this statement. First there is the fact that Chain Gang is on probation for violating hazing and alcohol policies, which should have knocked them out of the running from the start but let's take that out of the equation for a second and look at the rest of the selection criteria.

I am sure that Chain Gang's application was good the better of the two received, in fact. It's the fact they needed one that confuses me.

This is supposed to be a reward for being the best club of the month. After everything clubs accomplish each month, they need to fill out an application in order to be recognized by their own student government. This doesn't make sense a reward is supposed to distinguish a group's accomplishments and doesn't require the beneficiary to fight it out with competition or boast about why they deserve it more than the next guy.

The fact that they give the first award to a well-established group on campus also has me scratching my head.

Chain Gang does a lot on campus and for the community, but they aren't struggling to get started as many clubs are. Fifty dollars is a drop in the bucket (or the bottle, as the case may be) for Chain Gang, but for a new club receiving $25 at Fast Copy and $25 for a pizza party is like winning the lottery.

Giving this award to an unsuspecting new club could have been done easily, especially now, during the initial club-funding phase where each club sits down with a senator, an appropriation board member and a club advocate.

Between these three groups, ASUA could have given a new club a boost and showed the UA community that it really is going to give more money to smaller clubs this year, by making one the first club of the month.

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The wrong club of the month


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