The Turning Point USA chapter at Ball State University is being sent back to the Student Activities Committee to go through the approval process for the fourth time this semester. Audio of portions of the meeting can be found here.

Chapter members, including President Luke Wiese, met with the Director of Student Life Tuesday to discuss alleged reasons for the group’s stalled approval. The group first turned in their application in January. At the meeting, the Director of Student Life first claimed that the chapter was denied multiple times due to concerns regarding grammar and punctuation in the group’s constitution.

“Just center the title, these are picky, tiny little things. Change the word club or whatever, capitalize it — be consistent, sometimes it’s capitalized and sometimes it’s–these are tiny, tiny, little things, okay?”

The Director went on to say that once these edits were made, the constitution would have to be reviewed at the next Student Activities Committee meeting. The next meeting is at the end of April, a few weeks before the end of the semester. When students asked why something as minor as punctuation edits would require another month-long review process, the Director then claimed that the hold-up was in part due to the university being understaffed.

“That’s just the way it is. Sorry you’re impatient over a three-month turn around time. When the institution wants to come up with more staff, maybe it’ll go a little faster. In the meantime, it is what it is.”

Later, the Director suggested that she could in fact speed the process along if she felt so “inclined” to do so:

“There’s no arguing that this could be a cleaner, faster, easier process. It’s just not as it stands right now, it’s just not, and there’s a million reasons for that, and, you know, it is what it is. It could be that I could ask for that {a request for approval} by email, if I was inclined to do that, or it could be that you wait another month until the next committee meeting.”

The Director of Student Life said that department is not discriminating against Turning Point rather, the whole process takes a long time. When asked why, the Director of Student Life gives multiple vague and contradicting answers. Before the end of the meeting, the chapter president asked what he could do to help make the process move quicker, the only suggestion the Director offered was: “you could be nice.”

Throughout the meeting, the Director kept saying that Student Life has a backlog of applications, which slows down the process. However, she contradicts herself by saying she can speed up the process if the Turning Point chapter leader would ‘be nice’. Additionally, the process apparently requires that every minor change be resubmitted to a review group that meets monthly, adding further delays. Ultimately, one would presume that the person in charge of student activities has the power to change the club approval process.

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