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UC Proceeds with Club Q-Guide, Passes Financial Accountability Reform

The Undergraduate Council holds its regular meetings in Smith Campus Center.
The Undergraduate Council holds its regular meetings in Smith Campus Center. By Ryan N. Gajarawala
By Mayesha R. Soshi and Lucas J. Walsh, Crimson Staff Writers

The Undergraduate Council passed legislation to launch a Q-Guide for student organizations at the College and began the voting process to improve its financial accountability.

The first initiative starts conversations between the UC, the Dean of Students Office, and the Hub to create a Club “Q-Guide,” eponymously named after a similar program students formerly used to rate classes at the College.

“It can be difficult to understand the environment of various clubs without sometimes undergoing an extensive comp process or having connections with students already involved at the organization,” the act states.

The Club Q-Guide comes as the College’s Covid-19 restrictions continue to hamper students from fully “understanding the environment of clubs” and will work to help remove institutional bias, per the legislation.

The act also says student organizations are integral to the campus experience and that creating a communal shift at Harvard requires “incentivizing” new behaviors.

It continues by outlining that students from underrepresented backgrounds face challenges, such as “gaslighting” and “repercussions,” and need a place to share their grievances and concerns.

“Student leadership within these organizations deserve an opportunity to rectify their mistakes and show growth,” the act says.

The Student Residential Life Committee of the UC will commence its conversations with the DSO and The Hub on how to structure the Q-Guide. The legislation does not provide details on how the Q-Guide will exactly function.

The legislation was sponsored by Lowell House Representative LyLena D. Estabine ’24, Maple Yard Representatives John S. Cooke ’25 and Jada Pierre ’25, and Ivy Yard Representative Sebastian Ramírez Fuene ’25.

The second piece of legislation passed establishes a constitutional amendment that restructures and improves the financial accountability of the Council.

“It is critical that the Undergraduate Council exercises prudent judgement when allocating and managing funds raised for the Council from student contributions considering that those contributions were made specifically to enable activities and initiatives for students,” the legislation reads.

As a result, the Council is adding an additional section to its constitution that specifies a policy for engaging in external partnerships.

Per the legislation, the UC is prohibited from entering into partnerships with non-Harvard-affiliated organizations in which financial obligations exceed $1,000 unless both parties sign a written contract.

The legislation was sponsored by Dunster House Representative Samuel H. Taylor ’24.

The UC also passed an order Sunday to begin a procedure determining student dining preferences in Harvard Square and offer student discounts to these establishments.

The act will play a role in the Communications Committee’s “Crimson Takes Cambridge” program, which will focus on aiding local businesses in the Square and provide College students opportunities to “enjoy” the Square.

The legislation was sponsored by Mather House Representative Yousuf Bakshi ’23.

—Staff writer Lucas J. Walsh can be reached at lucas.walsh@thecrimson.com.

—Staff writer Mayesha R. Soshi can be reached at mayesha.soshi@thecrimson.com.

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