Updated: April 14, 2022 at 10:59 a.m.
The Student Association Senate passed a $1.3 million budget for the next fiscal year during a meeting Monday.
The Fiscal Year 2023 Annual Budget Act allocates about $950,000 to undergraduate and graduate student organizations and about $350,000 to umbrella graduate student organizations like the Student Bar Association. SA Sen. Yan Xu, ESIA-U, said the passed budget is lower this year than it was in previous years because the University-wide program fund, a joint fund between the University and the SA that is allocated exclusively to large-scale and multicultural events, was separated from the general fund that was approved this year.
The SA finance committee approved 17 percent of student organizations’ requested funding last fall, allocating about $440,000 to student organizations for the spring semester. Xu said student organizations’ funding requests exceeded the SA’s budget by 650 percent, and student organizations should seek out alternative methods of fundraising, like the GW Alumni Association, if the SA could not accommodate their full requests.
“We just simply do not have the money to support all the requests from student organizations,” he said.
President-elect Christian Zidouemba delivered public comments during the meeting and said he plans to appoint a diverse cabinet, improve the University’s dining plan and increase fundraising opportunities for scholarships when he enters office. He said a lack of services for students with disabilities on campus is “one of the biggest problems” on campus, and he hopes to work with student organizations and SA senators to improve Disability Support Services for the student body.
“You have also seen that how often our University inside the Student Association is divided and that we need to be able to change that,” Zidouemba said. “One of the main things that I think that we as student leaders, we need to be to be able to lead by example, not only when it’s up to us, but also when we need it for other students.”
The SA also approved its new logo, which featured a hippo and the buff and blue school colors.
The next meeting will be held April 25 in the Continental Ballroom of the University Student Center.
This post has been updated to correct the following:
The Hatchet incorrectly reported that the SA’s annual budget allocates funds to undergraduate student organizations. It allocates funds to both undergraduate and graduate student organizations. We regret this error.
This article appeared in the April 14, 2022 issue of the Hatchet.