The conference room in Powell Underground was booked for the evening as the Student Government Association (SGA) met for the Registered Student Organizations (RSO) appropriations meeting on October 3. SGA has this meeting every semester to discuss and vote on which RSOs will receive funding from their allotted amount.
“We try to be fair to everyone,” said Vyvian Nguyen, SGA senator. “We want our money to effect the masses, and we want everyone to be impacted.”
Each RSO that petitioned SGA to financially support their organization had 30 seconds to share why they are asking for funding and what they plan on using it for.
Some of the first organizations to go before SGA were the Students of Occupational Therapy Association and the Students of Athletic Training Association. The motions to pass both of these petitions were quickly approved. The Students of Occupational Therapy Association received $2,184 to establish a gym in the Dizney Building to work with their clients with disabilities.
The Students of Athletic Training Association received $2,700 to fund a trip to an athletic training conference and to an annual “quiz bowl.” These two monetary amounts were some of the largest amounts given to any RSO during the meeting.
However, the largest funding was given to the Association of Fire Science Technicians, the organization received $3,058.16 to prepare firefighters with training, and the Art Education Student Association, who received $2,934 for a conference for students to meet art teachers around the world.
The Archery Club received funding for their competitions and for uniforms, as long as the SGA logo was on the uniforms. The funding they received was $2,180.
Two new RSOs, the Eastern Students for Social Justice and the Society of Fire Protection Engineers, came before SGA to ask for funding for their novel organizations and their upcoming events. The Eastern Students for Social Justice received $734.32 in funding, and the Society of Fire Protection Engineers received $490 in funding.
Several RSOs pertaining to diversity came before the SGA at the meeting, requesting support. Some of these RSOs were the Minority Collegiate Connections, the Chinese Students and Scholars Association, the African Students Association and the International Student Association.
Open discussion during these petitions specifically was engaging. Many members of SGA suggested to the representatives of the RSOs that they should apply for diversity funding or an Aramark grant to finance the needs of their organization, rather than gain funding from SGA.
However, the Chinese Students and Scholars Association was the only RSO pertaining to diversity to be denied any financial support. The Minority Collegiate Connections received $830, the African Students Association received $728.28 and the International Student Association received $516.14.
Ryan Wiggins, SGA executive vice president, said even though SGA would love to be able to support all of the RSOs that ask for funding, the budget cuts made by the state and the university make it impossible to be able to do that.
“The university provides the funding, and recently the budget was severely cut,” Wiggins said. “We are feeling the effects of budget cuts, just like many departments.”
Other RSOs who received funding were the Environmental Health Science Club, receiving $1,200 for their event to bring in speakers to discuss health science, and the American Institute of Graphic Arts Group, receiving $1,650 to pay for guest speakers.
Funding was also approved for Phi Upsilon Omnicron, receiving $400, Phi Theta Epsilon receiving $910 and Eta Sigma Gamma, receiving $337.03.
At the end of the meeting, $316.56 remained which SGA senate members voted to move to the spring semester budget.