by CLAUDIA RIVERA
With over 200 organizations and clubs, UT is doing a pretty good job at representing the interests of its student population. OrgSync is a software service built to facilitate communication between the communities on campus. UT uses OrgSync to keep students involved and informed with what campus organizations are doing. Unfortunately, the lack of organizations that actually use OrgSync defeats the purpose of having the software.
This conflict could stem from two things: the university and the organizations. UT is among the hundreds of universities that have partnered up with OrgSync in order to enhance student involvement on campus, but OrgSync can not work if both the university and the organizations do not work with it. It is not enough to just implement the program; for it to succeed the university needs to orient and monitor the use of OrgSync meanwhile student organizations need to use it as their primary source of communication with their members. Here at UT, many of the organization’s portals are abandoned and empty which defeats the purpose of having OrgSync.
It is UT’s responsibility to provide a reliable way for students and organizations to communicate. UT refers to OrgSync as the way “to connect directly with student organizations”, according to UT’s Student Organization page, but in reality that’s not completely true. The university should look into this problem and ensure that each organization stays on top of their OrgSync pages. By monitoring and demanding the student organizations to update their portals it will be easier for students to become more involved. It is vital that students have easy access to these extracurricular activities; whether the university does it by changing the policies and rules of organizations, or simply communicating the importance of it.
The lack of attention given to these portals is not only a disadvantage to the club itself but also to the students. It limits their access to extracurricular activities and limits the growth of the organization. As a biology major with the desire to pursue a career in the field of medicine I wanted to join Skull and Bones as soon as I set foot on campus. I was unable to do so during my freshman year because the organization did not utilize their OrgSync page and I never knew when and where their meetings where. I even tried emailing the Committee Chair but I never got a response.
Again, the lack of attention cost this organization a member and made me go through a frustrating and upsetting experience. Fortunately, this year there is a new Pre-Med Committee Chair that has updated their OrgSync page and has announced, through their portal and email, that their first meeting will be this week. Therefore, the organization’s leaders need to ensure that their portals are up-to-date and provide all the necessary information that their members may need in order to be involved and informed. Communication is the key to a building a successful organization.
In the end, this is a great example of what miscommunication can lead to. OrgSync is a great program that helps students like myself keep track of club meetings and activities around campus. I personally have struggled to join organizations, like Skull and Bones, because of the lack of information they shared on their OrgSync page. If the administration and clubs are not on the same page, it jeopardizes students’ experiences. College isn’t only about getting your degree, it’s also about getting to know what you like and don’t like outside the classroom. Student organizations are a way to expand your interests, gain experience and meet new people, which nowadays is crucial to the success of an undergraduate student. Employers are looking for well-rounded students that have interest in various fields. In a world as competitive as the one we currently live in we as students need to be as prepared as possible for what waits for us after graduation and that
Claudia Rivera can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org