At the last Business and Finance Committee (BFC) supplemental allocation hearing on April 11, the BFC allocated all of its funding for student organizations. BFC Chair Melissa Nixon ’23 said this is a return to normalcy after two years of limited programming due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The BFC is funded by the $125 student activity fee paid by students each semester. According to Nixon, the BFC collected around $240,000 this semester. According to Nixon, this is not far off from the budget of previous years — despite this year’s unusually high enrollment — due to the fact that the student activity fee was reduced from $150 in 2020.
From there, $67,000 of the money was diverted to Social Board, whose primary expense is Summer Sendoff, while $6,000 was set aside as “Fun Funds,” which primarily cover food expenses. Additionally, just over $10,000 was devoted to other expenses, including class committees and for the Knox Area Transit system to provide free transportation to Kenyon students. The remaining money, approximately $157,000, was available to be requested by student organizations in semester allocations before the term began, or through supplemental allocation hearings every other week. The money is distributed to student organizations on a first-come, first-served basis.
With this semester’s funds depleted, Nixon said the BFC is trying to fund student organizations’ programming through Fun Funds, which currently only has about $800 left for the semester. “We’ve been trying to defer to Fun Funds to make sure people have some funding accessible, but it’s not as much as we’d hoped to have,” she said.
According to Nixon, some money had to be held back this year as a cushion, in the event both ultimate frisbee teams needed funding to travel to national championships. SERF had already requested funding, so Nixon explained that, to follow Title IX regulations, the BFC had to reserve enough money to fund BluRay the same amount in case both teams qualified for the tournament. Additionally, she said that the BFC had to reserve money in case this year’s Sendoff artists, who were announced on Friday as Audrey Nuna and Mills, did not sign contracts.
While there is no money left for this semester, Nixon said the best way for student organizations to ensure they get funding next year is to make requests early. Fall 2022 semester requests were due this Thursday, and will be processed at the next BFC meeting on Saturday, April 23. If organizations have not planned all their programming for next fall, Nixon encouraged them to come to a supplemental hearing early in the fall 2022 semester.
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