Student Organization Handbook


University Statement of the Student Organization Program

Missouri State University - West Plains believes in the importance of co-curricular involvement in activities as a vital part of the college experience. The successful creation and maintenance of an organization gives students an opportunity to develop leadership and organizational skills that will benefit them in future endeavors. It is the position of the university that the free and open association of students through organizations that are lawful and consistent with university policies are necessary to further a student's growth. The university agrees to provide services and opportunities for the organization and the organization agrees to follow the laws of the university and of the city, state and federal government. The philosophical basis for student organizations is to provide opportunities for education in civic responsibility, cultural understanding, ethical leadership, social engagement, cooperation, independent thought and action, and participation in the rights and privileges afforded all members of the university community.

This handbook is designed to provide you with the tools necessary to be successful within the student organization program at Missouri State University-West Plains. You will find information and resources on the basics of student organization registration, university policies and procedures, event and meeting planning, and leadership development. This handbook can only be effective when used in conjunction with support from the Office of Student Life and Development. Our office is dedicated to providing an environment where students are empowered to be actively involved on campus.


  1. Non-Discrimination Policy
  2. Basics & Registration
    1. Starting a New Organization
    2. Minimum Standards for Recognition
    3. Flowchart for New Student Organizations
  3. Organization Statuses
    1. Pending Organization
    2. Transitional Organization
    3. Active Organization
    4. Inactive Organization
    5. Reactivation Requirements
    6. Archived Organization
  4. Privileges
  5. Student Organization Annual Registration
    1. Registered Student Organization
  6. Minutes
  7. Policies & Procedures
    1. Alcohol & Drugs
    2. Student Organization University Account
    3. Wal-Mart Card
    4. P-Card
    5. Student Government Association Funds
    6. Organization Travel
    7. Using a University Vehicle
      1. Reserving the Vehicle
      2. Rules to Follow When Using the Vehicle
      3. Returning the Vehicle
      4. Important Notes
    8. Fundraising and Sales
      1. General Information
      2. Planning Your Fundraiser
      3. Cash Handling Procedures
      4. Food and Bake Sales
    9. Hazing
    10. Advertising, Distribution, and Solicitation Policy
      1. Publicity Basics 
  8. Event Planning Checklist
    1. Pre-Planning
    2. To Schedule a Facility
    3. For All Internal Events
    4. Publicizing Your Event
    5. Five to Six Weeks Before the Event
    6. Three Weeks Before the Event
    7. During an Event
    8. After an Event
  1. Non-Discrimination Policy

    Missouri State University is a community of people with respect for diversity. The University emphasizes the dignity and equality common to all persons and adheres to a strict non-discrimination policy regarding the treatment of individual faculty, staff, and students. In accord with federal law and applicable Missouri statutes, the University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin (including ancestry, or any other subcategory of national origin recognized by applicable law), religion, sex (including marital status, family status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or any other subcategory of sex recognized by applicable law), age, disability, veteran status, genetic information, or any other basis protected by applicable law in employment or in any program or activity offered or sponsored by the University. Sex discrimination encompasses sexual harassment, which includes sexual violence, and is strictly prohibited by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972.

    This policy shall not be interpreted in a manner as to violate the legal rights of religious organizations or of military organizations associated with the Armed Forces of the United States of America.

    The University maintains a grievance procedure incorporating due process available to any person who believes he or she has been discriminated against. Missouri State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action/Minority/Female/Veterans/Disability/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity employer. Inquiries concerning the complaint/grievance procedure related to sex discrimination, including sexual harassment and sexual assault, should be addressed to the Title IX Coordinator, Carrington Hall 205, 901 S. National Ave., Springfield, Missouri 65897,, (417) 836-4252, or to the Office for Civil Rights. All other inquiries concerning the grievance procedure, Affirmative Action Plan, or compliance with federal and state laws and guidelines should be addressed to the West Plains campus Deputy Title IX Coordinator or Equal Opportunity Liaison:

    or the Equal Opportunity Officer, Office for Institutional Equity and Compliance, Carrington Hall 205, 901 S. National Ave., Springfield, Missouri 65897,, (417) 836-4252, or to the Office for Civil Rights. (Res. Board Policies No. 70-11; Bd. Min. 10-28-11.)

  2. Basics & Registration

    1. Starting a New Organization

      • Before you begin the process of forming a new student organization, the Office of Student Life and Development recommends you research the existing ones located on the webpage: There is a wide variety of registered student organizations at Missouri State University-West Plains, and you may find one on campus that aligns with your personal interests. As most registered student organizations are eager for new members, you might want to join them rather than forming your own group. If you are unable to identify an existing organization that is of interest to you, we highly encourage you to start your own! Consider the following questions as you are organizing your new group:

        Once you have answered these questions and decided to form a new student organization, you will need to schedule a meeting with the Coordinator of Student Life and Development. During this meeting, the Coordinator will go over the registration process and be able to answer any questions you may have regarding requirements for being a student organization. Below is a step-by-step guide through the process.

        1. What is the purpose of your organization?
        2. What will be the goals of your organization?
        3. How do you plan to accomplish these goals?
        4. What is unique about your group?
        5. Are there other students you know who would like to join?
        6. What type of commitment will members need to make to the organization?
        7. How will you identify and recruit members for the organization?
        8. Do you know of a full-time Missouri State University-West Plains faculty or staff member who would be interested in serving as an advisor for your group?
        9. Will you be affiliated with a department/office on campus?
    2. Minimum Standards for Recognition

      • Each organization must have a minimum of four currently enrolled Missouri State University-West Plains student members.
        • Students currently enrolled in the Missouri State University Outreach program located in Gohn Hall are welcome to participate in Missouri State University-West Plains clubs and organizations that align with their interest, but may not hold an executive office position.
        • Students enrolled in both the Missouri State University Outreach and Missouri State University-West Plains classes, may be an executive officer in accordance with the guidelines set forth within the student organization constitution and/or by-laws.
      • The executive officers of President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and Secretary must be filled; all other officers and requirements for membership are determined by the individual organization’s constitution and/or by-laws.
        • Student organizations that do not have the traditional executive officer structure, will have an exception to this policy.
      • All officers must have and maintain at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA.
      • Missouri State University-West Plains students must hold all executive positions.
      • A different individual must hold each executive position.
      • A full-time faculty or staff member is required to fulfill the position of advisor.
        • Non-University employees are welcome to serve as sponsors of student organizations, however, there must be a full-time faculty or staff member serving as the official advisor.
      • Each organization must develop a clearly stated lawful purpose, which must be developed as a constitution and/or bylaws document(s).
      • At least one officer, or designated student, must attend a required Student Organization Orientation meeting.
      • Each organization must comply with University policies and regulations pertaining to student organizations.
    3. Flowchart for New Student Organizations

      1. Fill out the necessary information
        • An organization constitution and/or by-laws
        • A list of charter members
        • A signed Advisor's Agreement Form
        • A completed application form
        • Submit all documents to the Office of Student Life and Development
      2. The Coordinator of Student Life and Development will review the registration information.
      3. If approved, the new student organization must attend a Student Organization Orientation Session in either the immediate fall or spring semester, depending on the date the organization was established.
      • A new student organization is not officially recognized by the university until the aforementioned processes are complete. After completion of this process, student organizations are considered registered.
  3. Organization Statuses

    1. Pending Organization

      • Students that start a new organization within the Office of Student Life and Development will be considered “pending” and not be able to receive the privileges until all requirements are met to become a registered student organization.
    2. Transitional Organization

      • Student organizations in “transitional” status may have some, but not all of the requirements needed to become an active organization. Transitional student organizations will be eligible to receive the privileges of an active student organization upon meeting all of the requirements for registration.
    3. Active Organization

      • An active student organization is one that meets all of the registration requirements.
    4. Inactive Organization

      • Any student organization that has not completed the required registration, attended an orientation, or has not observed regulations and responsibilities in accordance with University policies, local, State or Federal laws will be considered an inactive organization.
    5. Reactivation Requirements

      • A student organization can transition from inactive to active status when they have completed the registration requirements and attended an Orientation Session.
    6. Archived Organization

      • Any student organization will be considered archived beyond the second semester of being inactive. An organization cannot be reactivated from archived status, but can use the information and/or documentation on file to apply as a new student organization. An archived student organization will receive no privileges until fully going through the registration process.
  4. Privileges

    • Use the Missouri State University West Plains name to identify institutional affiliations
    • Recruit members on campus
    • Assistance from the Office of Student Life and Development
    • Listing in University publications, web pages, and/or use of open bulletin board space in accordance with the Advertising, Distribution, and Solicitation Policy
    • Right to request funding from the Student Government Association
    • Right to conduct fundraisers
    • Right to function formally as an organization and have access to University facilities, including but not limited to: holding meetings, holding events, participation in university events, etc.
  5. Student Organization Annual Registration

    A student organization officer, or designated student, must complete the Annual Registration process each fall semester to activate their organization for the current academic school year. If the student organization does not meet the necessary requirements set by the Office of Student Life and Development, the organization will be placed in either inactive or transitional status.

    If the Office of Student Life and Development becomes aware that a student organization with an inactive status is actively meeting, the student organization will be placed on probation for remainder of that semester and will become a transitional student organization. Once the student organization meets the minimum requirements and attends an orientation meeting, the student organization’s status will be restored to an active student organization the following semester. If the student organization still does not meet the minimum requirements by the following semester, they will maintain their transitional status until such time they can meet the minimum requirements of a registered student organization.

    1. Registered Student Organization

      • For a student organization to be considered registered, the following checklist must be completed and submitted to the Office of Student Life and Development:
        • A constitution and/or bylaws
        • A signed Advisor Agreement Form from a fulltime faculty or staff member
        • A signed Student Organization Registration Form
        • Attendance by an officer or designated student at a Student Organization Orientation Session
          • The Office of Student Life and Development will provide multiple Orientation Sessions for the student leaders and advisors within the student organization program. Each Orientation will cover various areas of interest to student organization leaders and advisors including the following: resources available to organizations, university policies, funding opportunities, and more.
  6. Minutes

    It is required that organizations keep a record of minutes. There could be times when a record of minutes may be requested when making purchases. This record could also greatly benefit the organization in the case of disciplinary interest or for historical purposes. The Office of Student Life and Development may request such a record if a disciplinary situation does arise.

  7. Policies & Procedures

    1. Alcohol & Drugs

      • Any student found by the University to have committed any of the following misconduct is subject to the consequences outlined in Article VII of the Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities. The authority to determine if a specific act is subject to consequences shall be determined pursuant to the procedures set forth in this Code.
        • Use, possession or distribution of alcoholic beverages or alcohol paraphernalia, except as expressly permitted by the law and University regulations or public intoxication on University premises, is prohibited.
        • Use, possession or distribution of narcotics or other controlled substances or related paraphernalia, except as expressly permitted by law, is prohibited. Including the use of prescription medications without proper prescription or used counter to the directions of a valid prescription.  Additionally, the misuse of any products for the purposes of a similar effect as illegal drugs.
      • All policies listed within the Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities are applicable to students on campus, off campus, or when representing the University or student organization at University-sponsored or supervised activities.

        For more information on these policies, please refer to the Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities.

    2. Student Organization University Account

      • Student organizations are granted the opportunity to have a university account where university charges can be applied for various events and programs. The student organizations budget number and balance will be provided at the beginning of each fall semester to the advisor. Below is some general information regarding the student organization’s university account:
        • Student organization advisors may verify their account balance with the Coordinator of Student Life and Development or Accounting Manager of the Business Office at any time.
        • Charges such as the bookstore, van rental, food services, or others, may be placed on the account. Advisors will need to have the organizations budget number and must sign the appropriate form or receipt.
        • If the student organization’s university account reflects a negative balance at any time, the account will be suspended. The student organization will still be able to function, but no monies will be permitted to be spent until the account no longer reflects a negative balance.
        • No Student Government Association funds may be used to bring a student organization out of debt.
        • Appeals on suspended accounts can be made to the Vice Chancellor of Student Services.
      • Student organizations have the option to close their University account and transfer their monies to an external financial institution. However, it is strongly encouraged the student organization contemplate the following benefits and barriers, prior to making the decision that will be fit the operations of their program:
        • Benefits:
          • The ability to fundraise and give monetary gifts to charitable organizations without having to run the funds through the MSU Foundation.
          • The ability to purchase any required expenses for the organization at any time.
          • The ability to see the amount of funds in the account at any given time.
        • Barriers
          • Non-University bank accounts must file paperwork with the government to apply for tax exempt status.
          • Fiscal responsibility is no longer monitored by the University.
          • Reimbursement of funding passed by the Student Government Association would take place after the expenses had been made.
      • Please contact the Office of Student Life and Development for the process to transfer funds to an off-campus bank account.
    3. Wal-Mart Card

      • Student organizations may check out a Wal-Mart card from the Business Office for various purchases. Below is an overview of the Business Office policy to check out the Wal-Mart card:
        • In order to check out the Wal-Mart card, the student organization advisor must send an email to the Business Office and copy the Coordinator of Student Life and Development or designee. Either the advisor or a designated student leader may check-out the Wal-Mart card.
        • The person checking out the card must print their name legibly and include the organization on both the sign out sheet and receipt.
        • Prior to returning the card and original receipt to the Business Office, the student organization must submit a copy of the receipt to the Office of Student Life and Development. Copies of the receipt can either be submitted in an email or hard copy.
        • Individuals need to return the card and original receipt to the Business Office on the same day or the next business day following check out.
        • A purchase order will be submitted by the Office of Student Life and Development as soon as possible.
      • Failure to follow these procedures can result in Walmart denying charging privileges to the University.
    4. P-Card

      • Student organization advisors who need to purchase items such as plane tickets, membership dues, or other items online, may schedule an appointment with the Coordinator of Student Life and Development. Please schedule appointments well in advance in order to ensure enough credit will be available on the P-Card for the purchase.
    5. Student Government Association Funds

      • Student Organizations who have completed the registration process have the opportunity to request funds from the Student Government Association. Each student organization may request up to $600 each fall and spring semester. Funds are available on a first-come, first serve basis. The process for requesting funds is as follows:
        • Complete and submit the Student Organization Funding Allocation Application online at least seven days prior to the next SGA meeting.
        • SGA Cabinet will review the application and notify the student organization if their application was approved, needs modification, or disapproved.
        • If approved to move forward by the SGA Cabinet, the student organization must come prepared to present at the next SGA meeting. Note: The person submitting the request does not necessarily have to present on behalf of the organization. The presenter may be a different member of the organization.
        • Prepare a PowerPoint or detailed handout that provides an overview of the following:
          • Name f the Student Organization
          • Name of Presenter(s)
          • Brief description of how the funds would benefit the student organizations
          • Detailed breakdown of the amount of funds requested
      • After the presentation, SGA will ask the presenters to step out of the room for deliberation.
      • SGA senate will vote at this time.
      • The total amount to be allocated will be determined by the results of the vote.
      • If the fund request passes, the SGA treasurer will send an email to the Accounting Manager of the Business Office to have the funds transferred from the SGA account into the student organizations account.
        • Note: Funding transfers are completed once a month, but student organizations may proceed with spending the funds, even if they are not reflected within the account balance yet.
    6. Organization Travel

      • The university recognizes and encourages the participation of recognized student organizations in off-campus activities such as conferences and team competitions. It is required the Organization Trip Form be completed and submitted to the Office of Student Life and Development prior to all travel events. Failure to complete and submit the required trip forms could negatively impact the organizations good standing.
      • For all student organizations traveling to an off-campus location (10 miles or more outside of the West Plains city limits), the following are required:
        • Complete and submit the Organization Trip Form online, prior to your departure from campus. Note: the Organization Trip Form should include a list of all participants, with M Numbers, phone number, and method of transportation.
        • It is the responsibility of the organization to have the Activity Release Form completed and submitted to the Office of Student Life and Development prior to the organizations first travel activity of that semester. This form only needs to be filled out once and will cover the student for the remainder of the academic year. It is recommended the organization retain a copy of this form for each participant.
      • All participants on the University sponsored event are expected to be current students, faculty, or staff members. Questions regarding the travel of non-University participants must be submitted to the Office of Student Life and Development for further review and consideration.
      • All student organization travel should have the advisor, or full-time University employee designee, present on the trip. Requests for students to travel alone on Student Organization sponsored trips can be brought to the Office of Student Life and Development for further review and consideration.
    7. Using a University Vehicle

      • The University has several vehicles that are available for all departments, including student organizations, to use. Any employee representing a University account with adequate funds for authorized University expenditure may reserve a motor pool vehicle. Use of University owned vehicles is limited to full and part-time faculty and staff. Because of liability insurance requirements of the State of Missouri, students are not allowed to drive University vehicles or vehicles leased for use by the University, unless they are employed by the University and their official duties require them to drive. The Business Office and Physical Plant are charged with coordinating the use of University vehicles for official University travel. These procedures outline the steps to be followed in reserving a vehicle on the West Plains campus.
      • There is a limited number of vehicles available for reservation, creating the need for a first-come, first-served reservation process. If your travel plans change at any time after your reservation has been confirmed, you must notify the business office immediately. Also, notify the business office immediately if you need to cancel your reservation. This courtesy gives others the opportunity to use the vehicle. With all vehicle reservation requests being centralized, the vehicle type will be taken into consideration when processing the request.
      1. When reserving the vehicle the following information will be required:

        • Date and time of departure
        • Date and time of return
        • Number of people traveling
        • Type of vehicle needed
        • Driver information and destination
        1. All University drivers must have a valid driver’s license copy on file with the business office as well as a current vehicle insurance card copy.
        2. Drivers can pick up the keys, credit card and vehicle check out sheet at the business office between 8 AM and 4:30 PM. If your travel plans have you leaving before 8 AM or after 4:30 PM, please make arrangements to pick up the keys, credit card and vehicle check out sheet during 8 AM to 4:30 PM. This could lead to the items being picked up the day before the vehicle is needed. This also allows for time for the business office to contact the physical plant to have the vehicle ready for departure.
        3. The business office is closed Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. Keys, credit card and vehicle check out sheet for vehicles reservations starting on those days must be picked up the last business day before the reservation.
        4. Any special requests (i.e. seats removed, etc.) will necessitate a work order between the driver and physical plant. Please allow adequate time to process the work order. A 2-day lead-time is suggested.

          After you have picked up the keys, credit card and vehicle check out sheet, you may follow up with the physical plant the day before your scheduled reservation to ensure they are aware of the reservation. Also, this allows time to confirm any special requests (i.e. seats removed, all seats installed, etc.).

      2. Below are some rules to follow when using the vehicle:

        • Obtain beginning odometer reading (enter on vehicle checkout sheet).
        • Vehicles are not allowed to be taken home between stops or overnight. Vehicles must be left at the physical plant if they will be used for consecutive days, excluding overnight travel.
        • There is no smoking in any University vehicle.
        • Alcohol cannot be transported in any University vehicle.
        • Please wipe feet before entering vehicle especially if traveling in a muddy area.
      3. Follow these steps when returning the vehicle to the physical plant:

        • Vehicles must be returned with trash removed and any papers, bottles, GPS, etc. collected.
        • Vehicles must be returned with the gas tank filled. Departments are charged based on mileage logged, not how much money is actually spent on fuel.
        • Obtain ending odometer reading.
        • Ensure the vehicle is locked.
        • Drivers will return keys, credit card and vehicle checkout sheet (information on sheet completed including student organizations budget name and advisor’s signature) to the business office after the trip is completed. If after 5pm when returning, the above items should be delivered to the business office at 8 AM the following business day.
        • If using a university vehicle, departmental and Motor Pool policies must be followed, including the use of authorized individuals for driving vehicles on official business.
      4. Important Notes:

        • Non-University employees are not permitted to drive any motor pool vehicle.
        • If you are wanting to rent a vehicle for your trip, please consult with the Office of Student Life and Development for more information.
        • If using a personal vehicle, insurance must have at least the minimum liability coverage required by the state of Missouri.
        • All university policies and state and federal laws must be followed during the sponsored trip. University vehicles must not be driven in excess of the posted speed limit. Violations are the sole responsibility of the driver.
    8. Fundraising & Sales

General Information

A fundraiser is defined as any activity or event where funds are received, including both sales and the acceptance of donations, regardless of where the money ultimately goes. Fund raising projects must be lawful and conducted in compliance to University rules. Missouri state law prohibits raffles, Bingo, poker tournaments, and lotteries except within specific parameters involving sales promotions which are strictly regulated. Specific questions regarding a fundraising event potentially involving a raffle or lottery should be directed to the Office of Development.

Fundraisers by University departments and recognized student organizations are allowed. Student groups wishing to sell items or promote themselves are encouraged to make use of the designated space in the Carol Silvey Student Union in Hass-Darr Hall. In order for student organizations to conduct a fundraiser, they must complete and submit the Student Organization Program Form online for review at least two weeks in advance.  The form will be reviewed by the Office of Student Life and Development and Office of Development.

With the exception of bake sales and yard sales, anytime a student organization sells items, sales tax must be collected and turned into the Business Office. The sales tax will then be remitted to the state. If item(s) were donated to your organization to sell or received as a gift, student organizations must report the individual’s contact information and item(s) received to the Office of Development. If the gift was monetary, the student organization must fill out a Report of Money Received form, with advisor’s signature, and submit to the Business Office for the money to be deposited into the account.

Planning Your Fundraiser:

Many student organizations have big plans and excellent ideas for programs or services. However, few organizations have the finances to make these plans real. It is important for student organizations to have some kind of fundraising plans and to execute those fundraisers with the utmost professionalism, accountability, and legitimacy. Fundraising events can be a lot of fun for all involved. It is important to make the fundraising project a group effort and to get as many people involved as possible. Not only will you have more help to accomplish your goals, but you will also get more people interested in giving money. The key to being successful in fundraising is to be creative and to keep your goal in mind. Members of your organization will not get excited or interested in your fundraising efforts if they do not know where the money will go. In addition, members of the community will not give unless there is a good cause. Make sure that the reason you are raising money is a legitimate cause, and let everyone know why you are raising funds.

  • Set a goal.
  • Ask for suggestions from your members. What do the members want to do? Brainstorm for ideas.
  • Find out what has been done before. What worked? What didn’t? Why? How can you improve?
  • Check into local and state regulations, as well as University policy.
  • Involve all segments of your group, not just the officers. People contribute to what they create. Get as many volunteers for your project as possible. Make sure they understand the cause and are willing to contribute their time and effort.
  • Determine your market: college students, community, parents, etc.
  • Know your overhead. What will be the upfront cost?
  • Advertise wisely.
  • Let everyone know your expectations in advance and update on progress. Using a goal poster is a great idea; make sure the poster is displayed prominently.
  • Recognize everyone involved in planning and implementation of the fundraising project.
  • Thank your supporter group(s). Give your big donors some kind of tangible reminder of how they contributed to a good cause. Create and maintain good will with these contributors, because they will tend to help in the future.
  • Complete a written evaluation or report. Make sure you include:
    • Contact names, address, and phone numbers
    • Timelines and important dates
  • Suggestions of things to do differently
  1. Cash Handling Procedures

    • All cash collected must be deposited at the Business Office within one business day after collection/receipt of such money. The one exception to this policy is if the total amount is less than $50.00; then the deposit can be made weekly.
    • The timely deposit of money received provides the following benefits:
      • Improved control of funds, which reduces the risk of loss due to errors, carelessness, or theft
      • Improved interest earnings
      • Lowered risk of returned checks due to non-sufficient funds or closed accounts
      • Assistance in bank reconciliation
    • All deposits should be delivered to the Business Office and never sent through campus mail. Special arrangements should be made for transportation of large deposits by checking with the Business Office.
    • Cash should be physically protected through the use of vaults, locked cash drawers, cash registers, cashier cages, locked metal boxes, etc.
    • All checks should be made payable to Missouri State University-West Plains in black or blue ink and be restrictively endorsed to the University immediately upon receipt. This protects the check if lost or stolen.
  2. Food & Bake Sales:

    • Recognized student organizations may conduct authorized bake sales of products prepared by their members, advisor, or are commercially prepared. Consider the following guidelines when preparing for a student organization bake sale:
      • All items to be sold must be prepared from ingredients that are not contaminated and are freshly purchased with no evidence of spoilage.
      • All items must be prepared by individuals who are not ill and have no skin conditions or rashes.
      • All items should be individually wrapped or bagged in cellophane or plastic bags before being displayed or sold.
  3. Fundraising FAQ’s:

  • Raffles/Drawings
    • I am wanting to give away a prize(s) at an event. There will be no monies collected to win the prize. Am I allowed to do this? Answer yes. Yes
    • I am wanting to give away a prize(s) at an event. There will be monies collected to win the prize. Am I allowed to do this? Answer: Potentially. Please complete and submit the program form online. Also, please note, any money collected from this event must be run through the MSU Foundation. A small percentage of the total monies received will be given back to the MSU Foundation.
  • Bingo/Trivia Nights
    • Am I allowed to host a bingo/trivia night and collect money to enter the event? Answer: This is not permitted.
    • Am I allowed to host a bingo/trivia night and not collect money to enter event? Answer: Yes. What if I want to give out prizes? Answer: As long as you do not require monies to enter into the drawing for the prize(s).
  • Poker Night
    • I am wanting to host an event/fundraiser where we collect non-monetary items (example: canned goods, clothing, hygiene products, etc.) to give away to a charity. Am I allowed to do this? Answer: Yes     
  • Charitable Organizations
    • I want to raise money and give to a local charity. Am I allowed to do this? Answer: This is not permitted.



  1. Hazing

    • Hazing is an act that endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student or which destroys or removes public or private property, for the purpose of initiation or admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition of continued membership in a group or organization. The express or implied consent of the student will not be a defense to a violation of hazing. The willing participation or acquiescence of the student to the hazing activity is no defense and is still a violation of this policy.
  2. Advertising, Distribution, and Solicitation Policy

    • Missouri State University-West Plains recognizes the importance of campus advertising of sanctioned events and activities in fostering an active and involved University community. At the same time, the University recognizes that an attractive and well-maintained physical campus environment is essential to the overall advancement of the University. Therefore, it is necessary that printed posters, signs, notices, and other materials disseminated on campus be posted in a manner that does not detract from the physical appearance of the campus or result in damage to building surfaces.

      A student group or organization may distribute written material on campus without prior approval provided that such distribution is consistent with the policies of the University, including the University's Advertising, Distribution and Solicitation Policy and Facility Usage Procedures and the applicable laws of the State and of the United States and provided that it does not disrupt the operation of the University. For more details regarding the University’s Advertising, Distribution, and Solicitation Policy, please visit the following website:

      1. Publicity Basics

        • Student organizations may leave flyers in the following designated locations on campus:
          • Bulletin boards
          • Tables in Carol Silvey Student Union
          • On the ledge behind the Help Desk in Lybyer
          • Residence Halls (with prior permission from Director of Residence Life)
        • Student Organizations are also encouraged to promote upcoming events by using chalk on the various sidewalks on University property. Please refrain from writing underneath vertical surfaces and to wear the chalk can be naturally washed away by rain.
        • Student Organizations may also submit requests for information to be included on the digital signs. Please see more information in the Event Planning Checklist in the next section below.
        • Below is a list of designated spaces student organizations are not permitted to distribute information on campus:
          • Doors, walls, or other fixtures
          • Vehicles (including windshield wipers)
          • Trash cans
  3. Student Government Association Meeting Room

    The Student Government Association Meeting Room, located in Hass-Darr Hall 112, is available for any student organization to use for meeting purposes. This room is equipped with a conference table, tv monitor, computer, colored printer, and scanner. Student organizations may use any of these services for student organization purposes only. Students who abuse the use of the color printer for personal or coursework related purposes are open to potential student conduct violations. For scheduling availability and reservations, please contact the Office of Student Life and Development.

  4. Event Planning Checklist

    1. Pre-Planning

      • Review the University’s master calendar.
      • Try not to schedule your event at the same time as another event that might involve the same potential audience.
      • Try not to schedule public events on major religious holidays.
      • Review any financial needs with the accounting manager in business office. Payment setup or receipt of funds could add time to the planning process.
      • Do not take any additional action until you have reserved space for your event.
    2. To Schedule a Facility

      • Anyone requesting to use University classroom facilities, including the Carol Silvey Student Union, should contact the office of registration and records at (
      • Anyone requesting to use the Student Recreation Center should contact the office of student life and development.
      • Anyone requesting to use a non-classroom facility (other than the Student Recreation Center), including outside space on campus, should contact the director of business and support services.
      • Anyone requesting to use the West Plains Civic Center for a University event should contact director of University/community programs.
      • Anyone requesting to reserve the Student Government Association office (Hass-Darr 112) should contact the office of student life and development.
    3. For All Internal Events

      • Submit event to the master calendar.
      • Contact the director of information technology services ( and/or (417) 255-7911) regarding any technology needs.
      • Contact the superintendent of physical plant ( and/or (471) 255-7268) regarding any set-up needs, including podium, chairs, etc.
        • Work orders must be submitted no more than a week in advance to request assistance from the physical plant.
      • If the request is student oriented, a faculty/staff advisor must be present at the event.
      • Contact the business office ( and/or (417) 255-7260) to verify financial needs to include taking of money.
      • Contact the human resources/procurement specialist ( and/or (417) 255-7265) to confirm any purchasing needs.
      • Contact food services ( and/or (417) 255-7235) to arrange catering needs, if necessary.
      • If the event involves individuals other than Missouri State-West Plains faculty, staff or students, notify the office of admissions prior to the event.
    4. Publicizing Your Event

      • Define your target audience.
      • Decide how you will notify them of your event.
      • If your organization or department has a social media account on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, post about the event beginning 2-3 weeks in advance and leading up to the event (including flyers, time, date, location, etc.) See social media guidelines and best practices before posting from a university account.
    5. Five to six weeks before the event (Select from the following as appropriate)

      • Save the Date card: Send a Save the Date card for major events during busy time periods.
      • Mailing: Send invitations, postcards or flyers to target audiences.
      • Post Flyers: Develop flyer and post on campus and in the community. Some community locations to post the flyer include West Plains Chamber of Commerce, West Plains Public Library and local businesses.
      • Advertising: Contact the director of University communications if advertising is needed for the event.
      • News Release: Contact the public relations specialist in the University communications office to develop a news release to be sent to area newspapers and radio stations.
      • Radio Interview: Contact the director of University communications to arrange for a radio interview concerning your event at one of the local stations.
      • Banners and Posters: Contact the graphic designer in the University communications office to arrange for a banner and/or posters to be developed that you could place on campus or other locations to promote your event. Large print jobs that cannot be completed locally should be submitted through the Springfield campus printing services.
    6. Three weeks before the event (Select from the following as appropriate)

      • Master Calendar: Ensure master calendar date, time and location is accurate.
      • Take Note: Send information to the public relations specialist in the University communications office to be placed in Take Note email to all Faculty and Staff. Deadline is Friday at noon for Monday’s Take Note.
      • Student Bulletin and Stall Study: Send information to coordinator of student life and development to be sent to students via email and posted on Stall Study. Deadline is Friday at noon for Monday’s Student Bulleting and Stall Study.
      • Digital Signage: Submit content to at least seven (7) business days prior to the first date the content is to be displayed on the digital signage system.
      • Chamber Email: Contact the director of University communications to have your information submitted to the West Plains Chamber of Commerce email list.
      • Civic Organizations: Have event announced at local civic organization meetings (Chamber of Commerce/Rotary/Lions Club/Kiwanis/Optimist). The director of University communications can provide contact information.
    7. During an event

      • Photos/Video: Take photographs or video, as appropriate.
      • Cash/Check Handling: Ensure proper cash/check handling procedures are followed. The procedures can be found at the business office procedures page:
      • Connect Online: encourage attendees to use social media, including hashtags connected to the university and events.
    8. After an event (Select from the following as appropriate)

      • News Release: Contact the public relations specialist in the University communications office to develop a post event news release to be sent to area newspapers and radio stations. If possible, include an event photo.
      • Post Photos: add a few photos on social media if appropriate.
      • Radio Interview: Contact the director of University communications to arrange for a radio interview discussing what took place at your event.
      • Thank-You Letters: Send thank-you notes to off-campus volunteers, donors, speakers, etc. with newspaper clipping and/or photo, if available. A hand-written note is always best, if possible.