Org Funding Cuts Creating Controversies


In the December 2 edition of The Mac Weekly, a front page article entitled “Increase in org requests results in budget cuts” included a quote questioning whether funds allocated to Macalester Quiz Bowl and Macalester Democrats could instead be used for end-of-semester dinners for cultural orgs. As members of the aforementioned organizations, we were saddened and disappointed to hear our organizations targeted in such a manner. The rationale given by Erica Martinez ‘12 is that cultural orgs should receive funding for their end of the semester dinners because “cultural orgs are celebrating culture, and part of that is food”. She implies that private end of the semester dinners for cultural organizations are significantly more important than the contributions that our organizations offer the entire Macalester community. We, too, believe that end of the year dinners are a great way for orgs to provide a great wrap-up of the semester and overview of accomplishments to their members. In fact, both Mac Dems and Mac Quiz Bowl have had end of the year celebrations in the past as well. However, we choose not to request additional money from MCSG. We simply take issue with how Erica decided to question the funding of other orgs. We understand that all student org leaders believe that their events are vital to campus, but we do not support framing them within a context of demeaning other orgs. Pitting one org against another in competition for funding does not achieve anything useful; it simply creates more hostility between orgs. Like the leaders of any organization, we spend a great deal of time and effort to offer engaging and unique events on campus. MCSG is kind enough to allocate resources for us to provide programming to the entire Macalester community. Both of our organizations offer a wide array of opportunities from engaging Macalester students in local and national politics to allowing students to compete on the National Academic Quiz Tournaments circuit. Quiz Bowl, for example, has become a continuing partner in Founders’ Day programming, and Mac Dems has brought to campus numerous political leaders, from local state representatives to the Vice President of the United States. We understand that there is a limited budget, and we do not want to foster an ‘us vs. them’ mentality that pits one org against another in the battle for allocations. We are disappointed that Erica singled out our two organizations, and we hope that Macalester students see the value in having our presence on campus. Limiting the breadth oforganizations would be detrimental to the Macalester community as a whole. We hope that other student organization leaders recognize the important contributions of all student organizations before questioning whether their funding is worthwhile. While budgeting can be a heated and challenging discussion, no org should be forced to defend their legitimacy on campus. Editor’s note: the authors were informed of the correction concerning the quote from the FAC article. The original article and subsequent correction are linked in ‘related articles’ above. Related Articles Increase in org requests results in budget cuts