Campus Life and Involvement: Student Groups
Campus Life and Residence Life at SAIC offer something for all students. From campus-wide events to student groups and organizations, there are myriad ways to be involved in the day-to-day life of SAIC.
Benefits of being involved in a student group at SAIC include:
- Meeting new people and making new friends
- Learning new skills
- Serving the community
- Mentoring new students
- Having a voice in activities on campus
- Developing leadership skills
- Getting the most out of your time at SAIC
- Creating a greater sense of community at SAIC
Student groups allow you to share your passions and interests beyond the classroom. At SAIC there are community service groups, professional groups, spiritual and faith-based groups, discussion groups, exhibition and art-related groups, and many more. All of these groups help to create common space for students to explore what it means to be a person and a student at SAIC.
Joining a Student Group
Student groups are open to all SAIC students. To learn more about student groups and how to join, go to engage.saic.edu or visit the Campus Life Office in the LeRoy Neiman Center, Sharp Building, 37 South Wabash Avenue, room 201.
Starting a Student Group
To start an officially recognized student group, you will need at least two student leaders and an SAIC faculty or staff advisor. Then you can complete the student group registration process, available at engage.saic.edu. For more information, or to discuss your student group registration, stop by Campus Life in the LeRoy Neiman Center, Sharp Building, 37 South Wabash Avenue, room 201.
Student Group Examples
Below are examples of previously registered student groups, but new student groups are registering all the time! You can read more about the activities of all currently registered groups by visiting engage.saic.edu.
American Institute of Architecture Students (@SAIC)
The American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS) is a national nonprofit organization that promotes excellence and appreciation for architecture. AIAS @SAIC is a student-run affiliated organization that encourages interaction between members and professionals in the architecture field.
Art History Programming Committee
The Art History Programming Committee supports the Art History, Theory, and Criticism department and the students in the program by organizing various activities, lectures, and events. Particular emphasis is placed on facilitating relationships between art history and studio art students.
Art Therapy Association
The Art Therapy Association programs monthly events—including public lectures, symposia, and art exhibitions—in order to acquire further knowledge in art, social action, and the expressive therapies.
Artists Without Borders
Artists Without Borders is an all-inclusive forum for students who want to connect with other countries though art. The group shares information, makes connections, and engages in discourse and collaborative projects.
Avant Gardening investigates the food cycle through gardening by maintaining a garden in the Columbus courtyard and exploring and researching urban farming.
Black at SAIC
Black at SAIC (BaSAIC) supports the interests and dialogue between students, faculty, and staff of African descent at the SAIC. This group also provides a forum for members to establish connections and further discourse and collaboration between members.
Charlie's Table Top Club
Charlie's Table Top Club is group which meets weekly to play a variety of role-playing games. The group will start with Dungeons and Dragons and is always open to suggestions. All levels of experience are welcome!
Chicago Mural Projects
Chicago Mural Projects (CMP) is a group dedicated to creating murals around the Chicagoland area. They work within diverse communities and participate in youth programs.
Chinese Artist Association
The Chinese Artist Association facilitates cultural events for Chinese students and the SAIC community. The group's goal is to build a community where members can network, establish connections, and celebrate holidays together.
Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance
Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) support groups are open to anyone who is diagnosed with a mood disorder. DBSA support groups are not run by professionals but offer student-to-student support and aim to improve the lives of members affected by mood disorders.
Experimental Film Society
Experimental Film Society (EFS) is devoted to the discussion, creation, and viewing of experimental 16mm films. EFS holds screenings of avant-garde work from the 1930's to the present which include solo artists, themed, and student work screenings. The group also holds workshops of film-related techniques such as hand-processing, mixing emulsion, pinhole movie photography, and editing on film.
Good Ol’ Futbol
Good Ol' Futbol provides an athletic outlet for students in the form of weekly soccer games. These games are played in outdoor public parks weather permitting and in indoor soccer fields during winter months.
The Humanitarian Group volunteers at organizations to help those in need through one-day actions or services. Sites considered, among others, are the American Cancer Society, the Children's Hospital, soup kitchens, and North Shore Senior Center.
The Improv Club
The Improv Club facilitates the improvement of members’ writing, directing, and performance skills through weekly improvisational workshops. All levels of improvisational experience are welcome.
Intervarsity Christian Fellowship
The mission of Intervarsity Christian Fellowship is to build a strong fellowship and share the gospel of Jesus Christ through weekly meetings and outreach programs.
Japan at SAIC
Japan at SAIC (JSAIC) is group that engages in events and activities about Japanese art and culture. These events also include fundraising for disasters such as earthquakes and tsunamis.
Korean Graduate Student Community
Korean Graduate Student Community (KGSC) provides a platform of support, networking, and cultural exchange for Korean graduate students with the SAIC community.
Korean Student Association
The Korean Student Association at SAIC strives to bring the Korean community together by facilitating events that entertain, educate, and involve the SAIC community.
Latin Dance Club
The Latin Dance Club meets for weekly dance classes that explore diverse dance of a variety of Latin cultures. The group provides the SAIC community with professional lessons for an affordable cost.
Mouse & Toggle
Mouse & Toggle explores the relationship between art and technology through the medium of commercial and artist-created video games. Mouse & Toggle provides members with opportunities to discuss the artists' approach to crafting a digital work of art in the context of video games.
National Art Education Association, SAIC Student Chapter
The National Art Education Association (NAEA) SAIC Student Chapter supports a community of students, artists, and educators who value visual culture, cultural difference, democracy, and social justice through art education and professional development leadership.
Occupy SAIC is group that functions to organize, inform, craft, and extend the discourse associated with the Occupy Movement.
PAnT Collective is committed to expanding the Art Education department's voice and visibility within SAIC, creating and supporting communal spaces for conversation about and experimentation with art education, and enacting collaboration between Art Education students and faculty members and other departments at SAlC.
Parlor Room is a visiting artist program and lecture series curated by the graduate Photography program.
The Performance Exchange
The Performance Exchange is a group of Performance students looking to expand on their work outside of the classroom. The group organizes off-campus shows and events as well as holds peer critiques and social events like film screenings.
The Platypus Affiliated Society organizes reading groups, public forums, research, and journalism focused on problems and tasks inherited from the "old" (1920–70) and postpolitical (1980–90) left for the possibilities of emancipatory politics today.
Progressive Chicago Printmakers
Progressive Chicago Printmakers serves as platform where students interested in the Printmedia department communicate about work and ideas. Members will also create collaborative projects and visit various studios and locations of interest.
Queers and Allies
The group encourages discourse on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA) issues and facilitates involvement with creative projects and shows.
Residence Hall Exhibitions
Residence Hall Exhibitions (RHE) exists to nurture the relationships students have with other students, artists, professors, their own artwork, and the artwork of others, both on campus and in the Chicago artist community. The group's organic evolving gallery space helps students in their artistic and professional growth.
The SAIC student chapter of AIGA frequently hosts events related to graphic design and provides updates on happenings around the greater Chicago area on its Facebook page and Twitter. SAIC AIGA helps students become more involved in the local design community, create a community of their own on campus, and build leadership skills that will be valuable as they move into the professional world.
SAIC Anime Club
SAIC Anime Club facilitates open discussion about the appreciation of Japanese animation and American "otaku" culture such as cosplay, conventions, fan subbing, and collecting. The group views films that focus on current releases and up-and-coming artists.
SAIC Environmental Activism Club
SAIC Environmental Activism Club gathers to discuss issues related to the environment and sustainability and participates in many events and initiatives throughout the year.
SAIC Hillel facilitates a platform for Jewish life by organizing holiday celebrations and curating art exhibitions. Activities invite the SAIC community to learn more about Jewish culture and heritage by exploring history and investigating traditions.
Historic Preservation Organization
The Historic Preservation Organization is committed to connecting the Historic Preservation program's students with students from other departments as well as alumni to initiate a greater presence in the community at large. Through events, lectures, tours, and other events, the group hopes to establish a greater awareness for the preservation of our built environment.
SAIC Print League
The SAIC Print League supports the work of SAIC graduate and undergraduate printmakers with opportunities to share knowledge, techniques, and ideas. It also strives to unite the SAIC print community with the printmaking network of Chicago by facilitating their participation in printmaking taking place within the city and beyond.
SAIC ZEN Meditation
SAIC ZEN meditation is nondenominational group that is open to all promoting silent meditation, readings, and discussions. This group aims at developing community support for individuals in meditation, Zen concerns, and its practice and the role of contemplation and insight in art practice and creativity.
S.P.I.T. is a slam poetry and spoken word group started by and for students of the SAIC community. The goal is to provoke the written and silent words of writers to fly out of the mouth like saliva, ya dig? Hock back.
Student Museum Coalition
The Student Museum Coalition is a student group dedicated to serving as a voice for students working to strengthen the relationship between SAIC and the Art Institute of Chicago (AIC) and is one link in the newly revitalized chain of communication between them. As a liaison between the institutions, we are exploring opportunities for research projects, programming, events, and experiences at AIC specifically for SAIC students.
Student Organization for the Advancement of Philosophy
Student Organization for the Advancement of Philosophy (SOAP) engages in philosophical discussions to hone students' critical thinking abilities and increase their philosophical knowledge, enjoys the quintessential human activity of raising and addressing philosophical questions, and, through philosophical discussions, fosters a sense of community among SAIC students.
Students for Justice in Palestine
Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at SAIC is a diverse group of artists organized on democratic principles to advocate for Palestinian rights using creative and inventive strategies to advocate for Palestinian rights.
Vitrified is a ceramics-based group whose mission is to develop an understanding of the contemporary ceramic world and increase awareness about SAIC's ceramic program. This will be accomplished through weekly discussions, group exhibitions, fundraisers, and activities involving the use of ceramics.
The Symbolic Artist
In weekly Symbolic Artist meetings and workshops group members will explore, unfold, and discover personal and collective meaning within Jungian wisdom, art, Tao/Zen, Native American art, and personal art. Group members will learn about mythic art and artists, archetypes, and Jung. In each group, members will reflect personally and seek to learn the significance of the group and the teachings provided in each meeting.
Xerox Candy Bar
Xerox Candy Bar is a comic-zine which displays student comic work. Self-published and released twice a semester, it accepts all submissions.
The mission of the Yoga Group is to provide an inexpensive yoga class on campus to the SAlC community to instill healthy mind-and-body lifestyle choices and to balance the stress during the semester. The Yoga Group hires a yoga teacher who comes to the school to teach weekly lessons of an hour and a half duration. The group is open to the entire SAlC community, with or without yoga experience, and props are provided. Though the group encourages you come back every week, on-and-off participation is possible and welcome.