Archive for the ‘None’ Category

Celebrate our 50th anniversary with us!

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2023

As of 2021, our cooperative passed a landmark 50th anniversary of incorporated existence, and we want you to help us celebrate! The housing cooperative is everything it is today because of the cumulative efforts of our members. Whether you lived in a co-op for a summer or a decade, you made a mark on this community.  We’re inviting alumni back to reconnect and mingle with former housemates.

Our first-ever annual meeting was held in May 1971 at Potter Park to celebrate the incorporation of the SHC and purchase of our first house at 505 M.A.C. (now known as Vesta House). It’s fitting to have our golden anniversary at the same place.  

We now have 17 houses providing affordable housing to almost 250 people, and are always trying to expand the stock of affordable housing. More than that, we’re a vibrant community with a vast array of individuals who have all impacted it in some way. Alumni are welcomed back for this once-in-a-lifetime event. Will you celebrate with us?

Save the Date

WHO: Past and Present Members

WHERE: Potter Park Pavilion

WHAT: SHC 50th anniversary reunion (and 51st!)

WHEN: May 13, 2023

Follow the Facebook Event for general information updates. 

Now we’re Spartan Housing Cooperative. Still the SHC!

Tuesday, May 11th, 2021

A note from our Co-op President, Erik Berg, explaining our name change:

Prior to SHC was the Inter-Cooperative Council, a loose federation of the co-op houses associated with the student government of MSU. As this began to crumble in the ’60s, the need for a stronger, incorporated federation led to the organization of the Student Cooperative Council in winter of 1969, but for legal reasons at the time, the State rejected that name. So, May 1969 saw the successful incorporation of the “MSU Student Housing Corporation, Inc.” Unfortunately, because the people involved at the time were mostly students who left for the summer, this quickly faltered. It wasn’t until two years later when new co-opers revived the idea, the houses transferred their property and leases to SHC, and we really began.

Believe it or not, a lot of things have stayed the same throughout 50 years. An immediate issue was the name. The 1969 group was almost all MSU students, but the 1971 founders were a mixed bag. Despite being a misnomer, they kept the name on file with the state to avoid the hassle of changing our Articles of Incorporation and/or re-incorporating. This backfired when our application for 501(c)(3) federal tax exemption as a non-profit was summarily denied — it seemed that we were only operating for the benefit of our members as MSU students. Several appeals and attempts to reapply failed, and a combination of high member turnover and poor record-keeping has meant that we still don’t have federal tax exemption all these years later.Debate over renaming persisted for decades, although the only successful change came in 2002 when we realized that State law had changed to allow us to use “Cooperative” instead of “Corporation.” Since then, the non-MSU Student membership of SHC has grown, and three community co-ops have joined the federation. Plenty of possible names had been suggested, but it wasn’t until 2016 that then-VPE Jessica Sietsema suggested “Spartan Housing Cooperative, Inc.” to the Board of Directors. It didn’t gain any traction initially, but by 2019 it had grown on the Board. “Spartan” doesn’t sever our ties with the University community, but no longer implies our membership is MSU Student-only by removing “MSU Student” — and removing “MSU” alone stops external orgs from assuming we belong to the University (seriously, this is the norm, not the exception). “Spartan” is already used by a lot of local businesses as a brand motif, and importantly, it allows us to remain the “SHC,” just as we have for half a century. But “Spartan” does have meaning not in reference to the University or ancient Sparta. Googling reveals a wide variety of definitions; here are a few to give an idea:

-Firm in purpose or belief; characterized by firmness and determination. Possessing courage and resolve.

-Sternly disciplined and rigorously simple, frugal, or austere. Resolute in the face of pain or danger or adversity. Practicing great self-denial. Brave; undaunted.

This new name was seriously considered for over a year, until the Board moved to put it to a vote of the membership last March, in tandem with other changes needed to file for tax exemption once again. In addition to simply voting to change the name, we needed to amend the Bylaws, which requires a majority vote of the membership in a referendum, and the Articles of Incorporation, which requires two-thirds approval by the full membership, not just those voting, to amend. In the end, the Bylaw changes passed with 91% approval, while the updated Articles of Incorporation passed with 81%, but fell 16 votes short of the two-thirds approval necessary.

So, what are we to do? The Articles can’t be changed without this member vote, but the name in the Bylaws had to be updated. Additionally, the name change was clearly desired, despite turnout being a hair too small. After a discussion with the Board of Directors, a solution was decided.

In short, we’re able to compromise by legally operating under an assumed name. By filing a DBA (Doing Business As) with the State, we’re able to make the change even though our Articles of Incorporation still include “MSU Student Housing Cooperative, Inc.” and “MSU Student Housing Corporation, Inc.”

What does this mean for us as members? Not much. Nothing is changing operationally, and the co-op’s still called “SHC.” If you’ve read the April Pine Press, you’ll notice that it now sports “Spartan Housing Cooperative” on the back cover. Things printed going forward will use the new name, although plenty of existing merchandise (including the t-shirts we all just got) will advertise what we’re used to. Our website is being updated to reflect the change, as will our entire digital presence. But the same cooperative ideals and mission to expand low-cost cooperative housing we’ve carried throughout our storied past will remain unchanged as we look toward our promising future.

Digital Tours

Monday, October 14th, 2019

Coming soon to a co-op near you


Tuesday, October 8th, 2019

Misconduct Report

Wednesday, July 17th, 2019

Payment Plan test

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2019

Payment Plan

  • This plan is required for any member owing $200 or more. It must be approved by the Finance Committee and submitted no later than the 15th of the month in which the debt rises to $200 or over, or the 6th to avoid late fees. Without this step eviction proceedings may begin. 

    See ICC Standing Rules Section 3 Chapter 15 for further details.

    I understand that if I miss a payment, I will be fined $20 and eviction proceedings will be started against me.

    To stop the eviction process at this point, the outstanding balance due must be paid in full.

    I also understand that I will be charged for any costs arising out of the eviction process, including attorney fees, office fees and court costs.

    This amount must include ALL charges from the months covered by this plan. 50% of the total must be paid in 4 weeks, and 100% must be paid in 8 weeks. All payment plans must be paid in full by the end of the contract period.

    All decisions will be made by the Finance Committee. All recipients will be notified by email shortly thereafter. All questions may be directed to the Finance Committee

  • MM slash DD slash YYYY
  • ICC Debt

  • What charges do you currently owe as of the date of this submission? 

  • I agree to pay the Inter-Cooperative Council the amount of outstanding charges calculated above. 

  • Income

  • In order to be approved for a payment plan, the member must demonstrate their source(s) of monies to cover the necessary debt in accordance with the payment schedule below. You can click the plus sign at the right of the text box to add additional sources of income. 

    Source of IncomeDate AvailableAmount Available 
  • Acceptable types of documentation include: Documents from Financial Aid Office, paystubs, etc.

    Drop files here or
    Max. file size: 512 MB.
    • Repayment Schedule

    • Most folks list out 4-5 replayment dates. You can click the plus sign at the right of the text box to add more replayment dates.

      Date DueAmount Due