UNC Student Government uses Student Activities Fund Office accounts to distribute money to organizations on campus.
Priyesh Krishnan, student congress finance committee chairperson, said any student organization that applies for money from student government is required to have an account.
“They make a specific request for the use of money for this fiscal year and we make a judgment and have guidelines on how beneficial this is to the student body as a whole,” he said.
Sophomore Conner Nevel, Campus Y director of finance, said the Campus Y is an umbrella organization — considered one student organization with multiple subgroups.
Nevel said when the Campus Y pitches for money from the University, as they did at Finance Committee on Oct. 6, they go as one organization, even though they are made up of about 30 committees.
Nevel said Campus Y finance directors have used Microsoft Excel and another software program to make accounts more accessible and efficient, in order to more effectively allocate money for the organization.
Until recently, the Campus Y was responsible for distributing its money from Student Congress into individual Student Activities Fund Office accounts for each committee — a process with extensive transaction fees.
“We expressed to SAFO that we think it could be done better, that we could come up with a system that benefitted an umbrella organization, like ourselves, more efficiently,” Nevel said.
“For years we had essentially 30 different bank accounts in SAFO, which was extremely inefficient because, as far as fees go, we were paying 30 times the amount we should have been.”
Junior Keegan McBride, past Campus Y director of finance, said the finance directors came up with their own system of allocating money to combat the excess of fees and issues associated with the old process.
“We came up with this system where we can put all of our money in one SAFO account, not segmented, and then we can segment it on our end,” McBride said. “And then we took it a step further and aimed to give all of our committees access to their own information in real time, which is something that you can’t get from SAFO.”
McBride said this new method increased usability dramatically, allowing each committee in Campus Y to have a password-protected account that could be accessed at any time of day, rather than just once a month like SAFO.
“Now our per transaction fee will be around $1, rather than up to $25,” McBride said. “If you make 500 transactions, that makes a huge difference.”