UCSD Co-ops

The UCSD Co-ops: a brief overview

The Che Cafe - The Food Co-op - The General Store Co-op - Groundwork Books

UCSD is home to some very special student organizations: the Co-ops. The Co-ops are not-for-profit organizations that provide students, faculty, and staff at UCSD with the highest quality merchandise and services at the lowest prices possible. For many, the Co-ops are a place to buy low-priced healthy food and textbooks and provide off-beat alternatives to the items and the atmosphere offered by mainstream corporate UCSD. But there is more to the Co-ops than this.

Fundamentally, the Co-ops are an educational experiment in non-hierarchical organization. All members of the UCSD community are invited to participate in this experiment. Membership in a Co-op provides students with a chance to experience a non-hierarchical work environment and collective decision-making. By being a member, students receive discounts at all Co-ops, an equal voice in making decisions in the evolution of their Co-op, and a role in defining the atmosphere of the Co-op. Membership in the co-ops is open to anyone who wishes to continually volunteer about two hours a week at any Co-op.

The following goals and commitments, which provide the most succinct statement of what the Co-ops are about, were articulated and agreed to by consensus at an all Co-op meeting in January of 1992:

The Co-ops also provide educational opportunities for non Co-op members by sponsoring speakers, organizing study groups, and showing educational films. For instance, the Food Co-op lends books containing nutritional information and Groundwork, as well as offering study groups on collective theory and skills, will loan any book from its general stock, free of charge, for up to two weeks. We also advertise educational and political events sponsored by community organizations.

Che Cafe

For a look at some other co-operative ventures:

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