Allocations to set a precedent with multiple conference requests

Nicole Stempak

The Allocations Committee will set a precedent today when it decides how to disperse funds to four student organizations that are requesting money to attend the same conference.

The groups that requested money at the Oct. 3 allocations meeting are The Kent State Voices of Testimony Gospel Choir, Harambee, Kent African Student Association and KSU National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

“Yes, the groups happen to be African-American student organizations,” said Traci Easley Williams, director of the Center of Pan-African Culture. “However, they’re all different organizations with different constitutions, different agendas.”

Each group requested $816 to attend the 15th National African-American Student Leadership Conference in Holly Springs, Miss., on Jan. 16 and 17. The conference will include workshops and presentations to discuss the advancement of the black community, particularly at college campuses, according to a press release submitted with all four requests.

The committee voted to table the four requests, postponing making a decision until today, said Nikole Keslar, director of business and finance for the Undergraduate Student Government.

Modista requested $816 for the same conference at the Sept. 26 allocations meeting. The committee decided to award Modista $1,000, the maximum amount of money that can be funded for a conference, to cover travel expenses, Keslar said.

“We just wanted to provide them with money for transportation, but we didn’t expect so many other groups to be requesting funding for the same conference,” she said.

Judy Ripple, business manager for the Center for Student Involvement, said she has never seen a situation like this as she looked through several past budgets. She said more groups will apply for funding for the same conference in the coming weeks.

Keslar said additional requests are possible because the conference is in January. She did not see any forms in the submission box Wednesday.

Allocations has $66,537 available for the remainder of the school year.

The committee will meet at 2:30 p.m. today in the Governance Chambers. Meetings are open to the public.

Contact student politics reporter Nicole Stempak at [email protected].