Correction: Ann Marie Hessbrook’s name is misspelled in the article below.
One club negotiated an hour to get money for FunFest and Autism Walk.
By Richard Montemayor
An organization at this college that unites students with autism and raises awareness about the condition had a difficult time receiving funding for two events during the Student Service Advisory Fee Committee meeting March 5 in Fletcher Administration Center.
Club Amer, which asked for a total of $1,350, received half of that amount after a discussion that dominated the first half of the meeting.
Anne Marie Hessbrook, business administration sophomore and president of the club, lobbied for funds to participate in FunFest. FunFest is student life’s festival during the week of Fiesta.
“We are going to participate to satisfy our second benchmark requirement in an on-campus fundraiser,” she said. “We want to hand out Fiesta-themed medals because a lot of clubs on campus do that.”
The club requested $450 for the Fiesta medals. The club also requested $375 to participate in the Walk for Autism.
“Last year we participated in the walk and ended up fundraising the funds ourselves as the club because we didn’t want to come straight to the committee,” she said. “We want to do it on our own and have the opportunity to show you guys that we were able to do it, and now with the club growing a little more we want to take more SAC students to go.”
The club also asked for $250 for T-shirts, $200 for business cards and $75 for a vendor table for the club.
Communication design Professor Qing Liu questioned the request for business cards.
“Is it typical for clubs to get money for business cards?” she asked. “Is that something that has ever happened in the past?”
Student life director Richard Farias said it hadn’t, but clubs can request money for anything. Whether the committee approves it is another matter.
English Instructor Laura Lopez said her only concern was the cost of the medals, which students will give away at their FunFest booth. Lopez suggested selling the medals there, and Hessbrook said she had not thought about doing that.
“Typically if it’s something that the fee goes to that benefits the students, we don’t charge them because they are already charged the fee,” Farias said. “It’s almost like double-charging students.”
Student life coordinator Mark Bigelow said he wanted to ensure the committee would bestow money for worthwhile requests.
“I want to be sure that when the committee makes their decision, they’re thinking about … what is going to benefit the most to San Antonio College students. Is a Fiesta medal that you wear for a few weeks and then it ends up in a drawer more important to the student population as opposed to sending a group to a conference and then having them come back and teach stuff?”
Farias questioned why students even needed a booth at an off-campus event.
“I can see the participation for the walk, but what I can’t see is raising awareness outside of this college in a booth for an external event,” he said.
Hessbrook said the booth seems to attract student veterans, who volunteer their time.
The other two clubs requesting funds were the Kinesiology Club and the Asian Pop Society.
District wellness coordinator Chris Dillon represented the Kinesiology Club to request $3,500 for the club’s annual 5K boot camp run April 18 at Roseville Park.
“In order to take an event off campus, you have to pay, No.1, to rent the facility and then another fee in order to rent a section of the River Walk,” Dillon said. The club also needs to purchase T-shirts, race numbers, fruit, water and chips to time the event.
“We do have a chip timing machine that Northwest Vista bought over the summer, but we do need those other items in order to help execute the event,” Dillon said
The club also gives out prizes to participants.
“We give out medals to our first and second place in our 10 age categories,” Dillon said.
Kathleen Alonzo, nursing sophomore and Asian Pop Club president, requested $500 to pay for three-day passes to a Japanese Anime convention in San Antonio.
The committee approved both requests.
The deadline to submit requests for organizations and clubs is two weeks before each meeting.
The next Advisory Fee Committee meeting is 3 p.m. April 2 in the president’s conference room in Fletcher Administration Center.