The Student Association was a voluntary membership-driven student organization founded in 1940 after two years of student leadership campaigning to provide funding for campus publications and dances.
The Association had originally been conceived of as a way to integrate the campus life of dormitory-residing and commuter students through a reorganization of student governance of certain activities. This appears to also have been driven in part by the University's elimination of a Student Activities Fee in 1935 and a grant of independence to all student publications, which subsequently needed to raise their own revenues through ad sales and subscriptions. Students who paid the Association membership fee received year-long subscriptions of Spectator, Jester, and a discount on the Columbian and school dance tickets.
Ironically, when the Student Board attempted to expand the the S.A. College-wide by making membership (and payment of dues) mandatory on all incoming students, with payment of membership dues to the Bursar during registration, the Trustees and President Butler unanimously quashed the plan because it would make the Trustees "legally and morally" responsible for the S.A. funds, in direct contravention of the University's "complete freedom" policy for student activities, which dated back to the 1935 abolition of a Student Activities Fee.