Each year, the service and activities budget changes with the needs of the various departments at Pierce. Sean Cooke, director of student life, described the differences in the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 school year budget allocations along with the 2013-2014 budget requests.
“The tutoring center came to the student government with a lot of requests to fund expanded hours, more tutors, more one-on-one tutoring opportunities because there was demand for it,” Cooke said. “They decided to fund the tutoring center what the student government thought the tutoring center would need to meet these expansions. Funding them for the whole year with this amount of money, paying for things like tutors’ salaries.”
The Academic Resource Center’s total budget almost doubled from the 2012-2013 budget of $45,904 to $85,000 which was requested and allocated for the 2013-2014 year. Anything that is not spent from the $85,000 rolls over into a savings account called the fund-balance, which can be spent on one-time-only allocations. One-time-only allocations are projects that are non-reoccurring so the fund balance doesn’t deplete too quickly.
Some sections of the request column are blank because every position is lumped into a group list instead of individual request forms. There has been a dedicated fund for clubs in the past. For years the Service and Activities Fee Budget Committee has set aside roughly about $10,000 to fund club activities. Leadership and training development sends teams to conferences, retreats and training experiences.
“Office of Student Life goes for all the different salaries and supplies,” said Cooke. “It essentially stands as the operating budget for this office.”
Special projects can include artists and lecture series that come to Pierce College. The $23,500 allocated for this year’s special projects will go toward paying for these events. Cooke would like to roll that into the Office of Student Life budget so it’s one big request.
Peer mentoring was allocated $32,000 this year and last, although after the program was funded, peer mentoring was cut at the regional level. This means there are no more Retention Project peer mentoring programs in the state. The money still sits in the peer mentor fund account, and Cooke is currently working with the finance department to move that money back over to the activity board’s budget.
“Part of that was salaries for two student leaders for the year and was also supplies for events and activities,” Cooke said. “What we did was we took those two students leaders and added them to the activities board. Now we have Jaxon Gregory, our interactive media and gaming coordinator, who is planning a lot of events like the Magic: The Gathering tournament. We also created with Nicole Carroll a student success coordinator position where she plans events helping students be successful, focusing on things such as time management and motivational speakers.”
According to Cooke, programs such as Student Ambassadors, women’s soccer and the VetCorps navigators are not included in the 2012-2013 allocation because they have just been added to the budget.
“There is roughly almost a $1 million in the total operating budget, and currently there are different projects being looked into,” Cooke said. “They see that the money can be spent on things that could benefit students instead of having all of that money accumulating for no reason and not helping students.”
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