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Student Activities Organization Classifications

In order to help you better understand how Student Activities works with student-run organizations, the following information has been developed.

Chartered Student Organizations

Chartered Student Organizations have to re-apply for recognition each year ro ensure updated information, but are automatically approved. They are created by standing governmental bodies and have elected or appointed leadership. Below are some examples of Chartered Student Organizations:

Student Government: KPU, SUB, AUTO, Class Councils, School CouncilsMedia Board: ATV, Talon, AmLit, AmWord, WVAU, Clocks & Clouds, AWOLCampus Newspaper: The EagleGraduate Leadership Council: Graduate School CouncilsAU Club Council: All clubsSocial Greek Organizations: Panhellenic Association (PHA), Interfraternity Council (IFC), National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC)

Recognized Student Organizations

Recognized Student Organization must re-apply for recognition each academic year. The re-application process not only ensures that Student Activities has the most up-to-date information for the organization on file but also re-assures us that there is still a vested interest within the student body for the mission statement and purpose of the organization.

The full list of categories of RSOs is as follows:

·        Academic      

·        Business

·        Coalitions                  

·        Cultural                                 

·        Education and Advocacy

·        Global

·        Honorary Societies                

·        Performing Arts                                 

·        Political                     

·        Religious

·        Service          

·        Social/Recreational   

·        Social Justice

·        Social Fraternity/Sorority

·        Student Governance (for classification purposes, this category includes all CSOs plus Graduate School Councils and Student Government branches/departments)

·        Student Media (for classification purposes, this category includes all members of the Media Board and the Eagle)


More detailed information on certain categories of RSOs is provided below:

Fraternities/Sororities: Each chapter of an organization must embrace a dedication to leadership, scholarship, community service, and responsible citizenship and will be assigned one of the following statuses (based on Student Activities, individual chapter guidelines and inter/national chapter guidelines):

Media Organizations: American University currently has seven recognized media organizations. All of the media groups, except for The Eagle, are governed by the Media Board.

The Media Board is an independent organization, funded by the Student Activity Fee Fund, and designed to execute or oversee the following responsibilities:

·        To allocate funds and oversee any financial matter under the jurisdiction or the media board.

·        To mediate and resolve grievances against one or more members of the media board.

·        To serve as a liaison to the University community.

·        To ensure the financial and managerial efficiency of the media at American University.

·        To promote and protect the existence and activities of student media at American University.


Coalitions: Coalitions are umbrella organizations for any clubs or organizations that wish to join together under a common mission or purpose. While they will have a financial account established through Student Activities, not all member organizations need to be Student Activities clubs/organizations but they must be University-recognized. Coalitions are not eligible to receive funding through the AUCC and most commonly create a budget or funding base by creating a system of dues for member organizations or planning fundraisers.

Honorary Societies: Student Activities currently recognizes Golden Key International Honour Society, Alpha Lambda Delta, National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS), and the Order of Omega. Honor societies that are associated with a specific school or discipline are overseen by the respective Dean’s office.