By: RYAN LOHMAN
The IU South Bend Student Government Association (SGA) ended last school year with a surplus in its club-allocated budget.
New SGA vice president Lois Kassem said nearly $8,000 of the money set aside for student clubs and organizations went unused in the 2014-15 school year. Though budget surpluses are usually a good thing, Kassem wants to see that number closer to zero this time around.
“My goal is to help SGA run out of money this year,” Kassem said, speaking of the club-allocated money set aside each year from the student activity fees each student pays, “Students pay into it. We as a group should reach out to clubs to let them know it’s there for them.”
The SGA holds weekly meetings at which students may attend to review student government activities or request funds. To request funds, students must submit a form by 1 p.m. the Wednesday prior to the meeting.
According to its webpage, the SGA “allocates funds for events and programs that hold promise of creating student involvment on campus.” It requires a student organization to be registered with the Office of Student Life and the Bursar’s Office to request funds.
Clubs and organizations on campus often raise funds on their own to allow for trips, social events and educational resources. The purse the SGA controls is also intended for those things, according to Kassem.
Kassem has already reached out to clubs to encourage use of the funds. She sent emails to those involved in clubs and organizations explaining the process and encouraging funding requests.
Kassem said $60,000 is set aside each year for such use.
“This is here for your benefit—to enrich your education,” she said. “You should use it.”