Most student organizations have access to fewer funds than usual after this semester’s SA budget release.
SA Treasurer Joseph Austin, senior accounting and pre-law major from Houston, said it was difficult this semester to meet all of the needs of each organization because there were some new factors.
“There were eight groups who were first time requesters, such as Wildcats for Life and Wildcat Reign. More than $108,000 was requested, up from $92,000 last year,” Austin said. “Last year only $37,000 was granted and this year we actually gave away $43,000, which is the most we’ve ever been able to grant in a long time.”
Because of the influx of new groups and raised monetary requests from both new and older organizations, those used to receiving bigger grants from SA were taken aback by the reduced amount they received this semester.
Catherine Narveaz, Hispanos Unidos president, said the group didn’t receive the money they were expecting for an event the same week of the SA budget meeting.
“Hispanos Unidos had asked for a significant amount of money for one of our events, Entra a la Plaza,” Narveaz said. “We based our budget on what we had done last year and what we were approved of last year, hoping we would get the same funding because we were using the exact same entertainment.”
Narveaz, senior sociology major from San Antonio, said they had difficulty with their allotment because it was received on short notice.Â The budget was released on a Wednesday and Entra a la Plaza was that Friday.
Some organizations, such as SHADES, received a greater amount than normal.
Victoria Jones, SHADES captain and senior psychology/pre-med major from Dallas, said, “We were unable to reserve Cullen Auditorium for our spring show, so we took the available dates that were left, resulting in having a show in November and a higher budget this semester.”
Though their budget was increased, it was not significant enough to cover the cost of their show in November with Sanctify. Both groups are putting on fundraisers throughout the rest of the semester in order to come up with the remaining cost.
Both Hispanos Unidos and SHADES understand how difficult budgeting for all student activities are.
“It’s not just about meeting their needs for the semester but it’s about sustainability for the long term and that’s hard,” Austin said.