Note: Wednesday’s event will now be an information session. We’ll have elections the following week inshallah.

Update: Elections are Wednesday 4/1 at 8:30 p.m. in 417 Mathematics.

It’s hard to believe, but it’s almost time to select the MSA’s new board once again.

We’ll be having elections on Wednesday 3/25 at 8 p.m. in Lerner Party Space. The process will be similar to that of years past—you must be nominated (either by yourself or someone else) for a board position. We will contact you about the nomination, and if you accept, you can stand in the election.

You will need to give a brief speech to the voting body. If you win, great! If not, you can drop down to run for another position.

One change we’ve made this year–you can only drop down to run for two positions you specify to us in advance (and we’ll remind you to give us a list of positions you may want when we notify you of your nomination).

Send nominations to msa at columbia dot edu. Nominations are due Friday 3/20.

Feel free to reach out to any of us at msa at columbia dot edu for more information about specific positions, the MSA in general, or tips.

Here’s a quick rundown of what’s available:

The president is in a sense the face of the Muslims on Columbia’s campus and is in charge of maintaining the requisite liaisons with various campus clubs, organizations and Columbia’s bureaucracy. Internally, the president ensures a smooth running of the board and carrying the team forward to ever new heights.

Vice President
The VP plays a sheet anchor role in the day to day functioning of the board. The VP coordinates, and overviews all programming and networking in conjunction with the president and takes command when the president is unable to.

The treasurer is the finance sultan of the club and ensures that all events run smoothly and within budget. The position provides an excellent platform to understand the Columbia bureaucracy and a training ground for learning financial discipline. The treasurer additionally has the unique opportunity to lobby well for budget increases. The job requires a fair amount of paperwork and is—as per many previous treasurers—the most satisfying job on the board.

The secretary’s role is to serve primarily as the recorder and moderator of weekly board meetings. The major tasks of the secretary are to take detailed meeting minutes during meetings and compile an organized and comprehensive agenda to be distributed during board meetings. As the in-house captain, the secretary makes sure meetings run smoothly and in a timely manner.

Programming Committee Member: Religious
The Religious Life Chair is responsible for planning and overseeing all events that aid in the spiritual growth of the community. The RLC is responsible for creating opportunities for religious growth and religious knowledge. He or she is be responsible for aiding in Friday prayers and maintaining the proper environments in the prayer rooms. As a PCM, he or she can also plan and oversee programming for events that do not necessarily fall under his or her purview.

Programming Committee Member: Social
The Social Affairs Chair is responsible for planning and organizing social events, including but not limited to Eid dinners, town halls, movie outings, and general body meetings. As a PCM, he or she can also plan and oversee programming for events that do not necessarily fall under his or her purview.

Programming Committee Member: Public Affairs

The political affairs chair is responsible for overlooking politically relevant events on campus, interfaith programming, and events with other campus political organizations. The PAC is responsible for drafting necessary responses and relaying the board’s views on campus-wide happenings and administrative actions. The PAC is also not only a liaison between MSA and other student groups, but the MSA’s representative with the University administration in regards to political matters. Most importantly, the PAC needs to help create a safe environment in which the larger Muslim community can raise its concerns by by organizing Know Your Rights-type workshops and events that highlight important issues concerning the nature of being Muslim in America. As a PCM, he or she can also plan and oversee programming for events that do not necessarily fall under his or her purview.

Programming Committee Member: Community Outreach

The community outreach chair has a responsibility to lead and create collaborative efforts with communities within Columbia which face similar struggles as the Muslim community, as well as with the larger Harlem community to provide a space for growth and solidarity. In addition, the COC should maintain close contact with other local Muslim organizations to strengthen the MSA’s presence and foster a robust Muslim community in the greater New York area. As a PCM, he or she can also plan and oversee programming for events that do not necessarily fall under his or her purview.

Events Coordinator
The events coordinator is in charge of the logistics of every event organized by the MSA. The role primarily involves booking spaces in a timely manner to ensure that the MSA needs are best fulfilled. These include spaces for MSA weekly meetings, Juma’ah prayer services, halaqas, classes, and all other MSA programming that is done throughout the year. Organization and time management is key, as well as timely communication with the MSA advisor and staff at University Events Management. The job provides a great opportunity to develop bonds with the Columbia bureaucratic establishment and to serve the Muslims on campus.

Media Coordinator
The media coordinator is in charge of the external communications of the MSA. This includes writing up the weekly MSA emails, staying up to date with all of the emails being received by the MSA, assuring that the rest of the board is aware of any important emails, and conducting outreach with regards to other groups and clubs. The Media Coordinator must also be very comfortable with e-mail etiquette, as the role involves representing the MSA in a professional manner. Lastly, this position also requires a consistent commitment, as e-mails are received very frequently, and may sometimes require urgent responses.

Senior Advisor
The senior advisor provides the board with useful insight into matters that are pertinent to the community and to students as a whole. They use their understanding and experience with the community to help the board with strategic decision making.

For more info on MSA and the positions listed above, feel free to contact us at msa at columbia dot edu.