By Janelle Harb
Rather than funding a $100,000 griffin statue, the Undergraduate Student Association has chosen to allocate this year’s contingency funds towards providing additional revenue for student clubs and projects. This initiative is an effort to support the College’s mission, as well as its programming objectives, and “enrich the student experience,” according to a March 28 USA email.
The contingency fund is an account controlled by USA and made up of the previous year’s general allocation pool surplus added to whatever has been leftover in the contingency from years past. With the approval of a new endowment proposal plan, the contingency fund has now been converted into a quasi-endowment fund that can function as a bank account that generates interest.
“Surplus money would [now] roll directly into the endowment,” said Jeff Spencer, Vice President for Business and Finance, in the Senate meeting on March 21. In addition to this, USA has decided that the endowment is not to go below $50,000, as well as that no more than 5-percent can be withdrawn from the account for that year.
All expenditures from the fund will also need written approval from the President, Vice President of Business and Finance, as well as the supermajority from the Senate. According to the email cited above, such expenditures can only be made for three purposes during the academic school year: “a single withdrawal for operational funding purposes that does not exceed 5% of the total market value of the endowment, a single withdrawal to cover any operational deficit at the end of the academic year, [or] to fund long-lasting capital projects intended to benefit Canisius students in perpetuity.”
A common problem for student clubs and organizations is lack of funding, thus severely limiting the student experience. Hence, this proposal hopes to supply funds for projects students are passionate about and will benefit the school throughout its longevity, rather than allowing these funds to accumulate and be spent in less productive ways.