BY DANA REYNOLDS – STAFF WRITER
Within each academic year, the Student Government Association (SGA) is given an allocation of funds from Centre’s Board of Trustees that is used to finance events and organizations across campus. Instead of having self-sustaining organizations, Centre promotes an atmosphere where is the Student Government Association plays an active role—taking on the challenges of budgeting and financing.
Generally, SGA’s Finance Committee determines the amount of money a club or organization will receive for the academic year during its General Allocation process. Usually in April, clubs submit itemized allocation requests explaining what they are planning to use the money for and after reviewing each document individually, SGA then decides on a practical amount of funding that they can grant to each organization.
Sophomore and member of the Committee Henry Nguyen clearly emphasized that there are no organizations that receive preferential treatment.
“On the Finance Committee, we work to balance and appropriate the budget in a way that will best serve the interests of the entire student body,” he said. “No organization is given preferential treatment or deprived of funding as long as the money is being used in relevance to the needs and demands of Centre students. As long as it means certain activities will benefit our campus community, we will try best to provide adequate funding to support them within our budget.”
Throughout the year, SGA’s Finance Committee receives special funding requests as well. Special events include activities that organizations did not originally plan for during the allocation process. The entire SGA meets every other Thursday, referred to as the “General Session,” where the Finance Committee presents recommendations for funding. In order for an organization’s request to be heard, they must be turned in a week before the meeting of the General Session.
Currently, senior J.P. Deering serves as the Secretary of Finance for Student Government Association. As the Secretary of Finance, he is in charge of overseeing the Audit and Allocation process, approving special funding requests, and monitoring spending.
“All of that is to say that my job is essentially to make sure that SGA is using its funds in a responsible way while ensuring that there is enough left over to fill special funding requests in a feasible way as they come to us,” Deering said. “If these organizations were not given funding, there would be several significant financial hurdles to make it over before they could execute the enriching events and activities they are constantly planning. It is the goal of this body to provide all clubs on campus the opportunity to enhance and enrich student life, which inevitably means providing a feasible amount of funds to these organizations.”
Senior and President of the Student Government Association, Hunt VanderToll is a huge proponent of the Finance Committee and its make-up. With the help of the Finance Committee, Vandertoll hopes to support as many initiatives, clubs, and organizations as possible around campus. He wants to provide each committee with the funds they need to support their goals.
“I definitely think the Student Government Association plays an important role, by providing funding so organizations have time to focus on their mission and student outreach,” Vandertoll said. “I think the biggest strength of the Finance Committee is its make-up. There is a member from each class with the Secretary of Finance heading up the committee. This gives each class a vote on the committee and a diverse group of students to decide on important issues.”
With such qualified and dedicated students taking the lead, SGA’s finance committee will no doubt be successful this semester.