The Roosevelt Network operates via a chapter model.
The Executive Model
This model is most effective at community colleges or smaller public universities where executive board officers can be responsible for both club operations and policy work. One governing board decides which events, trainings, and projects its respective chapter should pursue, but each leadership position has defined responsibilities.
Leadership roles can vary depending on campus requirements, but in general, each executive-model chapter should include the following four positions.
- President – responsible for the club’s overall direction, day-to-day operations, project management, etc.
- Vice President – supports the President in overall club management and operations.
- Treasurer – coordinates with Roosevelt national staff and campus departments to ensure club funding.
- Policy Director – manages chapter policy project(s) and trainings and coordinates with policy coordinators.
- Outreach Coordinator – promotes Roosevelt events, meetings, trainings, and other opportunities to the larger campus and, when relevant, local media
The Executive Model & Policy Work
Because executive-model chapters often have fewer members, chapters typically belong to campus coalitions or policy working groups. Policy directors highlight important trainings and coordinate with policy coordinators and national staff to ensure quality. Chapters often host non-training meetings and public-facing events to conduct research and develop advocacy plans, among other activities.
The Gravity Model
This model is most common among small liberal arts schools whose respective chapters gravitate around one major project or initiative. Gravity-model chapters have executive board members only to fulfill campus requirements; these chapters operate day to day with horizontal leadership. Each chapter member has individual responsibilities, but authority and decision-making powers are distributed equally.
Gravity Model & Policy Work
Gravity-model chapters meet weekly—excluding any events, trainings, etc.—to work on chapter policy projects. Much of the substantive policy work happens at these meetings, which can include research, policy writing, power-mapping, and logistical tasks like meeting scheduling.
The Union Model
This model is popular among small- or medium-sized chapters with collaborative atmospheres and activism focuses. Union-model chapters have chapter heads and executive boards, but leaders provide ample opportunity for members to lead. These chapters often belong to campus coalitions.
The Union Model Work & Policy Work
Designated “Policy Expert” members guide their chapters’ work—including events, policy-writing, and training—in specialized issue areas. The executive board ensures that the chapter is involved in national-level programming like 10 Ideas.
Union-model chapters host several forms of chapter meetings:
- Public meetings/events – policy experts lead these public-facing events, which can include both student-led discussions and guest speakers.
- Trainings – chapter leaders often lead trainings to reinforce national programming, such trainings include policy writing tutorials, 10 Ideas workshops, etc.
- Policy working groups – to advance the club’s policy work, groups working on the chapter’s various policy projects meet separately to conduct project-specific work, including research, power-mapping, etc.
The High Membership, High Production Model
This model is common among large state schools with active memberships. Club leadership comprises two governing boards: an executive board and a policy board. Executive board members ensure the club’s effective operations, while a policy board of seven center heads leads seven respective issue areas.
High Membership, High Production & Policy Work
Each center head runs a policy center, which hosts autonomous events, trainings, and workshops to facilitate individual policy work within an issue area. These policy centers serve mainly as platforms for students to seek individualized help in their specific policy spheres
Some chapters integrate with their universities to TA classes or recruit from honors colleges or other programs on campus. This relationship boosts both club membership and university financial support.
The Double Helix Model
The double helix model is most popular at midsize and large private schools. Club leadership comprises two governing boards: an executive board and a policy board. The executive board members are responsible for governance and executive functions, while the policy board includes seven center heads who each lead one issue area.
Double Helix & Policy Work
Center heads each run a policy center focused on one policy initiative. These centers host meetings, trainings, and workshops, where much of the policy work (research, writing, power-mapping, etc.) occurs. Center directors are responsible for advancing the policy work, creating and holding members to deadlines, and other management functions.
Effectively establishing chapter-level communications is an integral part of your chapter’s success. Establishing consistent and branded social media platforms and engaging with press can both expand your chapter’s reach and help move your policy work forward. The student communications coordinator works directly with chapters to ensure that they are properly branded and helps connect them to press outlets to promote policy work. Review the communications guide to start building your chapter’s communications presence.
Chapter-level alignment with Roosevelt Network branding helps to ensure that we can communicate aligned and consistent messaging to new student chapter members and partners alike. Chapter branding applies to everything from chapter-level social media to the way we communicate with chapter members and partners. Refer to the communications guide to review the branding guidelines. The student communications coordinator can also provide guidance on how to align your chapter social media with network branding
Trainings and additional resources coming soon!
To enact long-term, real change in local communities, we need to change the rules of the system—that is why we focus on policy, not programs. We train our students in identifying the root causes of problems and building policy solutions to address them.
Trainings and additional resources coming soon!
Conferences & Events
Regional conferences are an important way for students to engage their communities, bring together chapters, and strategize about both their collective and independent policy work and their regional chapter growth for the coming year.
Students should plan all conferences in coordination with the national leadership regional teams and national staff.
Chapter events are a crucial step in the policy-planning process, allowing students to influence potential partners, work alongside coalition partners, and advance their policy ideas in numerous other ways. Chapter-level events can range from panel discussions to on-campus teach-ins. Before you begin to plan your chapter event, be sure to review the Event Planning Guide.
Event planning resources coming soon!