The Student Association co-sponsorship fund for this semester is larger than any second semester co-sponsorship fund in GW history.
Approximately $110,000 will be available in the fund, which is used by student organizations to offset event costs, said SA Sen. Matthew Cohen (SoB-U), chair of the finance committee.
“My plan from day one was to have as much free cash as possible, and be able to be more generous and give bigger co-sponsorships,” said Cohen, a senior.
He added, “By trying to keep (the operational costs for student organizations) down, it allowed me to free up a considerable amount of money for groups to program, which in my opinion is what student organizations are for.”
Final figures for the fund will not be ready until Feb. 12 because the mid-year review of student fund allocations has not officially occurred, Cohen said.
“The main purpose of the mid-year review process is to serve as a check and balance for groups who have received money to make sure they are using it,” he said. “If they aren’t (using the money) then we consider taking some of it back. The second purpose is to make sure that groups who did not receive enough money the first time around end up getting the money they need.”
In addition to reclaiming unspent money, the co-sponsorship fund will include money from SA executive budget cuts this semester. Last fall, the SA executive cut its budget by more than 27 percent, which helped expand the co-sponsorship fund to more than $170,000 – the most money the SA has ever reserved for the fund.
“The executive is projecting to return about a third of its money so that student organizations can use it for programming,” said SA President Nicole Capp, a junior. “We are able to do this because of our focus on advocating for students and implementing cost-saving measures on programs that have cost students a lot of money in the past.”
Capp praised Cohen and the finance committee for their work over the fall semester.
“Matt and the entire finance committee have been excellent stewards of student money, and students will benefit from their hard work with more money available for student programming in the spring semester than ever before,” Capp said.
The International Affairs Society, GW College Democrats and GW College Republicans applied for the most money.
The IAS applied for the most co-sponsorship money out of the four groups. Of the $22,988 the organization applied for, it received $7,643, or roughly one-third of the requested amount.
The College Democrats, one of the largest student organizations on campus, applied for $17,199 last semester and received $4,750, approximately 27 percent of what the group originally requested.
“Money supply is outstretched by demand on an approximate factor of three to one,” Cohen said. “For every three dollars a group wants, they can have one.”
Chris Brooks, chairman of the GW College Republicans, is optimistic that the influx of money into the co-sponsorship fund will lead to more co-sponsorship allocations.
“Hopefully (the additional money in the co-sponsorship fund) will allow us to get more money,” said Brooks, a senior. “We apply for a lot of co-sponsorships and we don’t get everything we apply for. Now that there is more money in the pot, hopefully that will mean that we will get more money.”