Dance Company charter revoked after longstanding violation

Joe Pelletier

After at least one year of turning a blind eye, Student Government revoked Dance Company’s organizational charter last Wednesday at the weekly SGA meeting.

Dance Company’s yearly audition process was in opposition to the SGA chartering policy that disallows organizations from turning away students, leading the Public Relations Committee to recommend removing their charter.

According to the SGA Chartering Policy (as seen in the document below), removal of an organizational charter forfeits all rights and responsibilities of a chartered organization.

Further evidence from John Stinchon, assistant director of the student center, and Jennifer Walts, vice president of public relations, shows that SGA’s executive members had previously been aware of the violation of policy, but had done nothing to change it.

According to Stinchon, Dance Company’s executive liaison, the violation “had been brought to the attention of SGA before.”

He said two student center advisers spoke with the executive board about the Dance Company issue this academic year.

Walts, a member and former treasurer of Dance Company, said she had brought up the violation of policy to Dance Company last year.

When asked why she didn’t feel responsible to make SGA aware of the policy violation, she responded: “I have such a busy agenda that it really just slipped my mind. As terrible as that is.”

Walts later said in an e-mail: “It’s important to note that anyone could have brought this to SGA’s attention. They hold tryouts semesterly which are promoted across campus, but since they are the only spirit group chartered by SGA, this policy violation went unnoticed for a bit longer than usual.”

Dance Company has been a student organization for 23 years, and The Chronicle has reports of auditions dating back to at least 2002.

According to Dance Company President Danielle DiCarlo, Dance Company will not apply to regain their charter.

“It would not be in our best interest to get rid of our auditions,” DiCarlo said in an e-mail.

SGA could not report when the inclusion policy for chartered organizations was first implemented. The Chronicle attempted to reach Associate Dean of Student Affairs Monique Drucker, but she is currently on an extended leave.

Stay with The Chronicle for more on this developing story.

Below is SGA’s Chartering Policy. See Article II, Section II for the reason behind Dance Company’s charter removal.

Chartering Policy 2 11 09