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CCC works to fairly distribute club funding

Alicia Conley | Monday, October 10, 2005

With the proposed rise in student activities fees, some students may wonder where their hard-earned cash will be going each year – but the Club Coordination Council (CCC) can account for that money.

The CCC controls University funding for clubs and regulates which clubs receive club status and which do not. Council president senior Beth O’Shaughnessy said the CCC’s biggest responsibility is to distribute student activities fees to clubs.

“Once a year, in the spring, clubs apply for funding for the next year’s operation,” O’Shaughnessy said.

Student activities fees, which make up the funding the Council gives to clubs, “come from tuition, fundraisers and donations, but the biggest portion comes from The Shirt,” O’Shaughnessy said.

Of the hundreds of thousands of dollars raised through the selling of The Shirt every year, the CCC gets a percentage. The rest of the proceeds are distributed to the Rector Fund, which helps students with unexpected expenses, and to other campus organizations.

Junior Joe Molosky, the Council controller, said the Council uses funds from The Shirt to finance student clubs. Molosky handles the financial side of the CCC’s activities – or as he put it, “making sure people’s budgets are correct.”

The busiest time of the year for the Council is during allocation season, during which clubs request the money they will need for their next year’s activities. The allocation process is very time-consuming and demanding for Council representatives, and starts fairly early.

“In February clubs submit a budget and a list of officers so we know who to contact,” O’Shaughnessy said. “They list what they spent through that academic year and what they want to spend in the next year.”

Division Chairs then meet with the club and then report back to the entire Council and say how much funding they want overall.

Molosky then attends a meeting of the Financial Management Board (FMB) with the other student organizations on campus and based on what the Division Chairs have told him they need requests a certain budget for the Council. The FMB, which allocates the money, tells Molosky how much it can afford to give to the Council. Molosky takes this number back to the Council, and the money is then divided up among the divisions, which split it among their own clubs.

Last year, for example, the Council asked the FMB for $349,000 and received $283,000. As president, O’Shaughnessy said she feels her “biggest task is representing clubs to the Financial Management Board.”

Clubs can also make appeals to the Council during the year for loans and money for unexpected expenses and activities they were not planning on doing during allocation season. For example, “the figure skating club appealed for funding to go to nationals,” O’Shaughnessy said.

CCC representatives hold office hours so “club leaders can come with questions and the representatives can help them find answers,” O’Shaughnessy said. “There’s lots of paperwork involved in holding an event, and it helps to have someone there to go and ask.”

In order to be a University-recognized club, a group has to meet certain requirements, Molosky said. Groups applying for club status are given a small amount of money and then put on probation for a year. After a year they are voted on by the Council, and if they are approved they receive club status.

Some clubs get more money than others. For example, Circle K and Habitat for Humanity get a larger share of the money because they are big groups and sponsor many activities, Molorsky said.

O’Shaughnessy said some clubs do not receive any money from the University, but “maintain club status for access to resources that aren’t necessarily financial.” For example, club status enables a group to rent out space for activities that other organizations do not have access to.

Faculty advisor to the Council Amy Geist described her job as including “anything from sitting in on meetings with student groups with negative accounts to helping oversee the allocation process to attending weekly meetings,” to planning the annual banquet.

Geist, who has a master’s degree in higher education, said she wanted a job that would make use of her background. She also wanted to work with college students in their extracurricular activities.

In addition to representing clubs to the FMB, O’Shaughnessy also sits on the advisory board for the student body president, the Council of Representatives (COR). Heads of other campus organizations such as class presidents are on COR as well. If a club wants to co-sponsor an activity with another organization that is not a club, such as a dorm, COR can give them funding for it.