In 2013, CUS leadership established an Endowment Fund of $300,000. The organization had been accumulating these funds to put towards a major project, such as a Sauder student lounge building similar to the Engineering student building. However, this project was rejected by university administration in its early stages, and the money was instead placed in an endowment fund run by the university. Each year, the CUS can remove a specified amount (between $20,000 and $30,000) to put towards extra projects that they have not budgeted for in the current year. However, since its creation, this fund has gone largely untouched.
This year, the Executive Council requested to the Endowment Fund Committee that a portion of this money be put towards cleaning the student lounge. Cleaning the lounge is not one of the responsibilities of the Sauder custodial staff; as a result, it is often very dirty. One of the most common pieces of feedback we hear from students is that we should try to clean up the lounge! However, as we had not initially budgeted for this expense, there was no way to fit the lounge cleaning into our existing budget. Endowment Fund committee chair Jacob Kim contacted Sauder administration, and they were supportive of the request. The committee met on January 24th, and their decision was later officially passed by the Board of Directors on January 28th: for the January-April semester, $1,296 has been allocated from the Endowment Fund to pay for Sauder custodial staff to clean the lounge. We will be recommending to next year’s Board of Directors team that this become a part of their annual budget.
If you have any questions about the decision, or about the history and usage of the endowment fund, feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org!