Student Organizations at the Ford School
Some of the most entertaining and memorable experiences in an academic career come from out-of-classroom events and involvement. The Ford School Student Affairs Committee (SAC), the Undergraduate Council and the Student and Academic Services staff of the Ford School recognize this and have the goal of creating an environment that fosters the creation and maintenance of active student organizations. Student organizations and clubs help stimulate a positive community environment, encourage students to pursue their academic interest outside of the classroom, and plan student-oriented programs.
One of the things we strive for at the Ford School is to be a caring community. In the Carnegie Foundation’s Special Report on Campus Life the report states “a caring community not only enables students to gain knowledge, but helps them channel that knowledge to humane ends.” The outstanding efforts of the student organizations play a central role toward this objective. We do hope that you will become involved and continue the remarkable tradition of contribution to our community.
Student Organization Funding Guidelines
Student organizations play a critical role in building community and enhancing the educational experience. The Student and Academic Services Office (Student Services), in an effort to ensure that the limited funds for student organization activities are allocated in a fair and equitable manner, accepts funding requests from student organizations in the early part of each academic year. Student organization events that receive financial support from Student Services must be open to all Ford School students. Activities that offer the greatest benefit to the overall Ford School community will receive the highest priority. Requests submitted to Student Services will be reviewed by the Ford School Student Organization Funding Committee. The committee is comprised of the Director of Student and Academic Services, the Student Services Program and Event Coordinator, the Chief Administrative Officer and the Director of Communications and Outreach.
To be eligible to receive funds from Student Services, student organizations must be officially recognized by SAC or the Undergraduate Council, registered with the Office of Student Activities and Leadership, and have a valid SOAS account.
Generally, the funding from Student Services is reserved to support activities that could not go forward without the funding. General categories of such activities include speaker events open to the entire Ford School community, community service projects, activities likely to enhance the educational experience of members of the student organization and/or a fairly significant sector of the Ford School community, activities which provide opportunities for students to develop professional skills, and activities which promote a greater interaction, in a professional context, among members of different Ford School organizations or with alumni.
Other considerations include the size of the organization, its total anticipated budget for the academic year, amount of carry-over funds from the previous year, and the SAC and Undergraduate Council allocation for the year at issue. Given the limited funding, money for food, honoraria, recreational activities, and travel have become increasingly limited. None of the allocated funds may be used to purchase alcoholic beverages.
Once allocations have been determined, funds are transferred into the organization’s SOAS account, usually within 10 business days. Students are reimbursed for their expenses through the SOAS account. For further guidance on reimbursements, students should consult the SOAS guidelines.
Educational Programming – Funding preference will be given to panels and speaker events that further policy education outside the classroom, help students make informed decisions about career choices and provide opportunities for students to share aspects of their culture and life experience with the Ford School community. Social mixers and networking programs will receive financial support on a limited basis. Depending on availability, funds may be available for reasonable travel, accommodation, and meal expenses incurred by out-of-town speakers. Funds may not be used for speaker honoraria and/or gifts.
Student Travel – Limited funds are available for reasonable travel expenses to conferences, national meetings, and special events. Students are expected to seek supplemental support and sponsorship from other sources.
Registration Fees – Limited funds are available for registration fees associated with conferences, retreats, etc. Student participants are required to share what they learn with their respective organizations and the Ford School community.
Organizational Meetings/Food – Depending on availability, funds may be awarded for expenses related to organizational recruitment meetings. Limited funds may also be available for reasonable expenses related to lunch or dinner events. Per the Ford School and University of Michigan Alcohol Policies, University funds may not be used directly or indirectly for the purchase of alcoholic beverages. Funds raised by student organizations may be used to defray the cost of hosting events where alcoholic beverages are served.
Funding request procedures
Organizations that wish to receive full consideration for funding from Student Services must complete the online funding request form by the designated deadline each fall term.
Early Funding Deadline – August 15th* – Funding requests are limited to events and activities that occur prior to October 1st. All funds awarded during this cycle are taken into account during the academic year budgeting process.
* Early funding deadline will take effect in August 2011 for the 2011–2012 academic year.
Academic Year Funding Deadline – 10 business days following the SAC and Undergraduate Council funding request deadline – Student organizations request funds for the academic year. The deadline for the winter term of academic year 2010–2011 is 5:00 p.m. on January 10, 2011.
Requests submitted after the academic year funding deadline are permitted. Funding will be limited and based on availability. If you have any questions, please stop by the Office of Student Services (2245 Weill) or call (734) 764-0453.
Acknowledgment: Many thanks to the University of Michigan Law School Office of Student Affairs whose language has been used and adapted for the Ford School’s Student Organization Funding Guidelines.