FisherSync: The Next Big Step for Clubs and Organizations
Students, faculty, and staff have grown accustomed to the swarm of daily emails from clubs and organizations at St. John Fisher College, but a new initiative by the Office of Campus Life and Student Government Association (SGA) has streamlined how clubs and organizations promote and provide information.
Kelsey Michener, president of SGA and a senior majoring in accounting and business management, was one of the leads who worked on FisherSync. The idea was to create an easier way for clubs and organizations to communicate with students and reduce the overload of emails students receive from campus groups.
The process started with a lot of paperwork and streamlining efforts. Campus Life, SGA, and its members looked into demos for different applications that could possibly be used, such as Collegic and OOHLALA.
After searching, they chose the online management system for student involvement, OrgSync, in February of 2016. This is how the name, “FisherSync,” was created. OrgSync is similar to the look and setup of Facebook, so Campus Life and SGA saw it as the best fit for students.
The work was not done yet, though. Michener and members of Campus Life and SGA had to learn how to use and build portals on OrgSync. After doing their homework, FisherSync was finally released to club officers in fall 2016, and it launched to more students in January 2017. It took many sessions for the creators to learn how to use FisherSync, and it took even more sessions for clubs and organizations to use it, but now, it is available for all students.
There was one open forum held earlier this semester on how to use FisherSync, and in the future, SGA and Campus Life plan to offer one training session per semester for students and club officers to learn how to use the new system.
So, what does this new system have in store?
During her research, Michener noticed that many students did not like clubs using email as the primary source of communication, and people had to opt out of getting all these emails. Now, FisherSync allows students to opt in with clubs and organizations on campus.
OrgSync also has a cell phone app where students can search for St. John Fisher College and receive a newsfeed of all the information from clubs and organizations.
Students will be able to find, learn about, and hear from clubs and organizations without feeling cluttered or overwhelmed. This also means that since clubs are utilizing FisherSync, all Google sites for the clubs have been taken down. This way, all information for the clubs can be found on one website, which Michener thought to be a huge step in terms of convenience for students.
The next big step for FisherSync is for all involvement and co-curricular activities to be located in one place. Michener noted that other colleges such as Kansas State University use OrgSync for a variety of resources, and as a hub for all clubs and organizations, there is a possibility to add more features in the future.