Center for Student Life and Leadership Development

College of San Mateo has a vibrant student life, supported through the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development, which provides students the chance to extend their learning outside the classroom. These activities allow students the opportunity to learn and develop skills in leadership, inter-personal communication, advocacy, and event planning.

Through the Associated Students, CSM’s student government, students participate in the governance of the college. Members of student government also develop, promote, and implement programs and services that are of benefit to the general student population. Student clubs and organizations provide students the opportunity to interact with individuals who have shared interests and shared cultural backgrounds. Clubs and organizations also have the opportunity to sponsor campus-wide events and activities.

The Center is also one of the locations on campus where students and the general public are welcome to ask questions about any of the College’s programs and services. The Center also provides services such as on- and off-campus referral services; local transit information, information regarding campus posting; and deals with issues related to on-campus vending machines.

For more information, visit the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development website (Building 17, (650) 574-6141).

Special services provided for students by the Center include:

Student Activities Event Planning
The Student Life and Leadership Development Manager is available to assist campus organizations in the development, planning and approval of special campus programs and events. College policy questions, facilities reservations, security planning, audio visual requests, insurance requirements, health and safety reviews, risk management planning, publicity and other considerations for special events are coordinated through this office.

Student Government & Club Information
Information concerning any aspect of student government, student activities or clubs may be obtained in the Center. This office also provides these groups with duplicating and publicity services.

Referral Services
The Center maintains current referral listings of services available through the College and community agencies. The Center assists students through referrals to the campus Health Services, Personal Counseling & Wellness Services, Child Development Center, and community agencies for such services as legal assistance, family planning, and women’s services.

Transportation Information
Bus and train schedules, maps, and general transportation information is available through the Center.

Campus Posting
All signs, flyers, or similar materials must follow campus policies and instructions regarding campus postings. Copies of these regulations are available in the Center.

Vending Refunds
If campus food vending machines are not vending properly, refunds are available from the Center.

Associated Students

The Associated Students of College of San Mateo (ASCSM) is the official representative student government organization at College of San Mateo. The Associated Students organization is charged with the responsibility of assessing and meeting student needs and of providing student input into the decision making process of the college. The Student Senate and its committees, the Advocacy Board, the Cultural Awareness Board and the Programming Board, carry out the activities of the organization. The Advocacy Board is primarily concerned with researching legislative bills and advocating on behalf of students. The Cultural Awareness Board plans, organizes, promotes, executes, and evaluates events that educate and promote issues of equity and social justice , and recognize and celebrate the unique diversity of the CSM community. The Programming Board is responsible for all of the cultural, social, and co-curricular events sponsored by the Associated Students. The Inter Club Council (ICC), which is also part of the Associated Students, coordinates and promotes all of the student organizations on campus.

Major elected and appointed officers and representatives of the association are: President, Vice President/Senate Chairperson, Secretary, Finance Director, and Student Senators.

In addition, students are selected by the Student Senate to serve on College and District committees, including Institutional Planning Committees, and District shared governance committees. A complete list of committees is available from the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development.

Further information about the Associated Students can be obtained by contacting current student officers through the Center. Meeting times for Associated Student groups are available through the ASCSM website.

Student Senate
The Student Senate is responsible for the administrative affairs of the association including the monitoring of programs approved by the Student Senate and the representation of the association’s viewpoint in college-wide matters.

The Student Senate is comprised of students elected at-large in an annual campus-wide election.

Advocacy Board
The Advocacy Board is responsible for researching and advocating for legislation at the local, state, and national level that impacts CSM students and the community college system. The group meets with elected officials to express the student voice and promote issues of importance to students.

Cultural Awareness Board
The Cultural Awareness Board is responsible for planning, coordinating, and executing activities that celebrate, highlight, and bring attention to issues of equity, social justice, and diversity.

Programming Board
The Programming Board is responsible for planning, coordinating, and executing social, cultural, and co-curricular activities. The group plans events that will enhance students' college experience and that provide a sense of community on campus.

Public Relations Board
The ASCSM Public Relations Board is responsible for planning, coordinating, and executing the advertising and promotion of ASCSM events, activities, services, and programs on campus, online, and as otherwise directed by the Student Senate.

Inter-Club Council
The Inter-Club Council is comprised of representatives from each student club on campus. Its purpose is to provide an information exchange between clubs, coordinate events sponsored by more than one club, and has a very important role in advising the Student Senate regarding support for club activities.

Associated Student Body Card
All students who have completed registration and paid the $15 student body fee are entitled to a photo I.D. student body card. After classes have begun, you may obtain your Student Body Card at the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development. This photo identification card entitles you to special discounts from 10% to 40% off at local businesses, movie theaters, shops and restaurants. On-campus discounts are available at the cosmetology salon and all athletic events. The funds collected from the student body fee help support numerous programs and services on campus including: scholarships, emergency student loans, child care, athletics, guest speakers and concerts. If you would like more information about the student body card benefits, or would like the student body fee reimbursed, please contact the Center at (650) 574-6141 before the last day to drop semester-long classes. 

Student Clubs and Organizations

College of San Mateo encourages students to augment their formal education by participating in extracurricular activities and events. Among the opportunities available is the privilege of starting and/or being a member of a formally recognized student club or organization. Each group elects its officers and plans its own program for the semester. The activities of each group depend largely upon the enthusiasm of its membership. Anyone interested in joining or starting a club or organization is welcome to stop by the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development (Building 17, Room 112, (650) 574-6141) for more information. In order to establish a new organization, there must be a minimum of six interested students, an approved faculty/staff advisor, and a constitution that meets college requirements.

Sororities and fraternities and other secret organizations are banned on community college campuses under the Education Code of the State of California.

A list of currently active clubs is available at the Clubs website

Student Organizations

The general purpose of all student groups as organized, recognized, and approved under the supervision of the college administration shall be in conformity with the provisions of California Education Code and the educational objectives of the College. All student organizations are subject to the regulations of and derive their authority from the California Education Code, the San Mateo County Community College District Board Policy and its Rules and Regulations, and College Regulations, in that order.

Denial of membership in any organization or of participation in any activity on the basis of sex, race, religion, sexual orientation or national origin is prohibited. Membership in secret societies is prohibited.

Permanent Student Organizations  

A. Definition: A recognized student organization is defined as a group which:

  1. Operates under the advisory of a member of the college staff.
  2. Maintains in the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development a constitution which has been approved by the members of the organization and the Student Life and Leadership Manager, and a current list of officers. Membership is limited to registered students at College of San Mateo.
  3. Holds meetings regularly which are open to all students and announces its meetings through the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development and publications of general circulation on campus.
  4. Deposits all organizational funds in a college account as required by the California Education Code and established college procedures.

B. Privileges: The privileges of recognized student organizations include:

  1. The use of the name of College of San Mateo.
  2. The use of the buildings, grounds, equipment and services of the college when available and officially scheduled.
  3. Publicity through appropriate college channels.
  4. Appropriate advice and assistance from the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development.

Ad-Hoc Student Organizations

A. Definition: An ad-hoc student organization is defined as a group which:

  1. Is organized for a specific and temporary purpose that is compatible with the educational objectives of the college.
  2. Operates under the advisory of a member of the college staff.
  3. Files a statement of purpose with the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development and a roster of at least six (6) student members.
  4. Normally operates for a period not to exceed thirty (30) school days.
  5. Is composed entirely of students currently enrolled in the college.

B. Privileges: An ad-hoc student organization will be granted all the privileges of recognized student organizations and must follow the procedural requirements outlined above.

Campus Facility Use by Student Organizations

Student organizations, as defined above, may request use of college facilities for events and activities as outlined below.

A. Procedure for the presentation of programs:

  1. Programs intended for members of recognized student organizations require approval from the faculty advisor and the Student Life and Leadership Development Manager.
  2. The presentation of programs by recognized student organizations require that the sponsor adhere to the following Center for Student Life & Leadership Development procedures:
    1. In order to obtain authorization to present the program, the sponsor is required to furnish the Student Life and Leadership Development Manager with appropriate details regarding the planned program. The information provided is to include the nature of the program, date and time, anticipated attendance, services needed (e.g., custodial, ushering, security, publicity, audio visual, etc.), equipment required, proposed facility to be utilized and all details regarding admission charges or other funds to be collected in conjunction with the program. Upon review of this data and if the event is approved, the Student Life and Leadership Development Manager will begin the necessary paperwork to reserve the facility and place the event on the Campus Events Calendar. If approval is denied, the Student Life and Leadership Development Manager’s decisions in this regard are subject to appeal and review by the Vice President, Student Services.
    2. Program plans must demonstrate that the program will not present or create an undue health or safety risk to students, staff, or the public. The Vice President, Student Services may deny or cancel programs that cannot meet this requirement.
    3. Programs must be presented in appropriate authorized areas.
    4. Programs will end by 1:00 pm, unless approval to extend the program time is granted by the College President.
  3. Sponsors of events that involve professional performers, speakers, artisans, or such may pay these individuals for their services. This rate will be established by agreement between the performer, the sponsor, and the Student Life and Leadership Manager prior to the date of the event.
  4. Groups and individuals may be required to furnish a certificate of liability insurance as required by District and College policies.

B. Reservation of facilities for meetings or other purposes by student groups:

  1. The sponsor of an approved program must reserve the desired facility in accordance with established procedures. When necessary, the Student Life and Leadership Development Manager or their designee will work with the appropriate departments to determine availability of facilities. A list of available facilities is available from the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development.
  2. Public facilities and classrooms are normally available for special program use at during normal college business hours. Times outside of normal business hours must receive prior approval from the Vice President, Student Services. 
  3. Requests for reservations for college facilities by student organizations are to be made through the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development. Details of the program being proposed must accompany the request for facilities and be submitted to the Student Life and Leadership Development Manager for review. Once the program plans have been reviewed and the availability of the facility has been established, the facility reservation will be confirmed with the college Facilities Rental Office through the use of a facilities contract form.
  4. Programs must be produced in such a manner so as not to constitute interference with the instructional program. Only at times when classes are not in session may sound amplification equipment be used out of doors. Exceptions to this policy may be granted by the Vice President, Student Services or his/her designee under any of the following specific instructions:
    1. The program includes a prominent speaker or presentation of campus-wide interest.
    2. The program is a response to an imminent or continuing national or local crisis.
    3. The program is of campus-wide interest and significance.
  5. Before a request for an exception may be submitted to the Vice President, Student Services, the sponsor of the program must make every effort to schedule the program into authorized facilities during hours when classes are not in session. Sponsors must also verify that it is impossible to do so.

Off-Campus Organizations

Individuals or groups wishing to make use of College space to exercise their right to free speech may do so in accordance with the Time, Place and Manner of Speech policies outlined in the College Policies section.

Individuals or groups wishing to make use of College space for making retail products or services available are subject to the On-Campus Vendor Policy, available through the Center for Student Life & Leadership Development.

Individuals or groups wishing to make use of College space for events and activities must contact the Facilities Rental Office (College Center Building 10, Room 439; (650) 574-6220) for policies and pricing.