Milwaukee School of Engineering: Threat to Christian Group’s Freedom of Association

Category: Religious Liberty
Schools: Milwaukee School of Engineering

ReJOYce in Jesus Campus Fellowship (RJCF) ran into trouble when it submitted its original bylaws to apply for re-recognition after a year of inactivity. MSOE’s Student Government Association (SGA) sent the group a letter informing them they wouldn’t recognize the group because it believed RJCF’s “Standards of Personal Conduct” discriminated on the basis of “sexual preference.” After the SGA’s decision, RJCF contacted FIRE for assistance. FIRE’s letter to MSOE President Hermann Viets explained that the SGA’s actions had violated the school’s stated policies supporting religious liberty and freedom of association, and reminded him that no state or federal law prevents religious organizations from governing themselves according to religious principles.

When President Viets did not respond to FIRE’s concerns, FIRE took the case public.  Five days afterwards, the SGA voted to grant full recognition to all student organizations that were given “temporary status.” RJCF, along with the Muslim Students Association and the Cigar and Pipe Social Club, became “full-fledged organizations with no funding restrictions or any other probationary restrictions.”

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    MILWAUKEE, Wis., April 22, 2005—In a victory for religious liberty and freedom of association, the Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) has granted full recognition to the ReJOYce in Jesus Campus Fellowship (RJCF) student group. On Monday, April 18, the school’s student government granted full recognition to all student organizations with “temporary status,” which included RJCF. The student government’s decision came after the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) took the case public last week. Prior to FIRE’s intervention, the student government had denied RJCF full recognition because of an article in the group’s bylaws requiring members to live in […]

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  • E-mail from MSOE Student Government Association Official to RJCF Advisor, March 30, 2005

    March 30, 2005

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    March 23, 2005

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