The Ivy Council was founded in 1993, when student government leaders from the Ivy League colleges and universities met to discuss issues and problems at their respective schools. In the course of meeting, they discovered that they faced similar issues. They concluded that an organization should be formed to facilitate the exchange of ideas and promote student growth at each and all of the Ivy League institutions, ushering in The Ivy Council’s conception.
For years, The Ivy Council confronted the difficulty of running a student organization across state lines. The Council members drafted and revised a Constitution and financial guidelines to promote consistency throughout the organization four times: once in 1993, 1998, 2004, and once again in 2008. It was only in the late nineties that the Ivy Council could focus entirely on representing its student constituents.
The 1998-1999 Ivy Council rapidly developed sound internal operations and maintained frequent communication. Through this, they completed development of, and solidified the goals of The Ivy Council. The invigorated organization inspired universal involvement and unprecedented attendance levels at the Steering Meetings as well as the fall and spring Conferences. That year, specific events were designated to be the core of the Ivy Council calendar. Also, the 1998-1999 Executive Board laid out the first plans for IvyCORPS (Ivy Community Outreach Projects) and the Ivy Leader’s Summit.
The 1999-2000 Executive Board was committed to continuing and fully realizing the projects from the previous year. It determined that The Ivy Council should be a viable independent institution, and pursued that goal. Approval of the Ivy Council’s 501(c)(3) application by the IRS was an important step in its development, as it allowed the organization to develop an aggressive plan for fundraising. The 1999-2000 Executive Board also proceeded with developing and launching both IvyCORPS and the Ivy Leader’s Summit.
The subsequent Executive Boards continued to help The Ivy Council grow financially, strengthen its bonds with the home schools, and to support the Ivy-wide projects that had been laid out for them by past Boards.
Since that time, The Ivy Council has sought to sustain the core projects developed by the 1998-1999 Board while also attempting to standardize its processes in order to provide greater executive and financial stability. The 2003-2004 Steering Committee of the Ivy Council made great strides in formalizing requirements for each chapter, as well as promoting fiscal responsibility by establishing rigid chapter funding procedure.
2007-2008 marked a dramatic progressive change in The Ivy Council’s purpose, structure and programs. An entirely new Constitution is being drafted to be ratified soon, outlining a new organizational structure as well as programming. Such programs enhance The Ivy Council’s ability to produce and provide information across the Ivy League, strengthen communication lines and access among students, and improve many other internal and external core functions. This era also marks the first time that The Ivy Council has created sustainable programming internationally: in China with the first Ivy-China Student Summit and internships with the African Medical Research Foundation.
2009 promises to be the most exciting for the Ivy Council, with innovative initiatives in the Policy, Programs, and External Affairs Departments.