Editorial Board: Know where your money is going

The Daily Evergreen Editorial Board

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Attention students of Washington State University: at the start of every academic year, we the students contribute $544 each to an account governed by the Student Services and Activities (S&A) committee.

Tonight, the committee will vote on where our money goes. This will happen in a meeting that is open to the public. We at The Daily Evergreen encourage all students to attend this meeting and represent their investment.

We the students pay our contribution to S&A in the form of yearly fees separate from our tuition. This year, that amount totaled upwards of $7.8 million to spend. Our investments are pooled and redistributed to various student organizations that directly affect our student experience.

SEB, the CUB, WSU Athletics, ASWSU, GPSA, Student Media, WSU’s Children’s Center, Health & Wellness Services, and a host of other student organizations rely on our contributions.

They all made presentations to the committee this year, making their case for S&A funding.

University Recreation has requested a substantial portion of S&A funds to assist in an overhaul of WSU’s Rogers-Orton field equipped with new turf, lighting and a revamped design.

WSU’s marching band has requested a portion of funds for new uniforms and instruments.

The Coalition for Women Students asked for funds to replace outdated materials.

Our money is allocated to our student organizations by S&A board members, who are appointed to responsibly represent our interests.

The committee is made up of 15 delegates. These 15 people decide funding for the 23 unique student organizations that request S&A funds each year. WSU budget and administration faculty members occupy five of those seats. The remaining 10 are filled by eight undergraduates and two graduate/professional students.

We the students do not have a direct vote in the deciding of S&A funds distribution. That power has been fully vested in representatives on the board. Our money quite literally rests in the hands of 15 people, but that does not make their decision autonomous from our input. Our presence has an immense amount of power that should not be underestimated.

Students: Tonight’s budget decision is open for our attendance. The Daily Evergreen is the student voice of Washington State University, and in adherence to that role we maintain that the student body’s acknowledged voice is paramount to our university’s health and vitality.

Our most recent Editorial Board this semester called on students to be engaged in their university undergraduate government, and now we encourage you to be engaged in the distribution of your money.

If you are at all involved with any student organization or benefit from the services they provide, tonight’s proceedings are about you.

If you go to the gym. If you see a doctor at Health & Wellness. If you drop your child off at the Children’s Center for daycare. If you bought tickets to see 2 Chainz and plan to buy tickets to next year’s SpringFest … this is all what’s at stake.

We the students – undergraduate and graduate students alike – hold an equal investment in the millions of dollars distributed by S&A. Every student should exercise his or her equal voice in how that money is spent and attend this budget meeting.

The meeting will take place at 5 p.m. in the Lighty Student Services Building, Room 405.

Positions taken in staff editorials are determined by a majority vote of the Editorial Board. The Editorial Board consists of: Editor-in-chief Michelle Fredrickson, Managing Editor Dustin Brennan, News Editor Caitlin Tompkins and Opinion Editor Bryan Allen Contact editors at [email protected] to respond or suggest an editorial topic

UPDATED: This article was updated 4/6/2015 1:05 p.m. to contain more accurate information.