Managing an active, successful student organization can be very expensive. Hosting events, taking trips, and keeping your organization running all cost money. ORG has compiled the following resources that may be able to help reduce this burden.
2021–2022 Budget Deadlines
All organizations must apply for funding within specific deadlines. The applications for funding are open on MU Engage two weeks before the budget deadlines listed below.
*Supplemental Budget Period-Funding may not be available.
To be eligible for ORG funding, Recognized Student Organizations (RSOs) must be in good standing for the academic year:
- Attend ORG’s annual Administrative and Finance Training*
- Re-register the organization’s Engage portal
Recognized Student Organizations are eligible for ORG funding, with the following exceptions:
- Social fraternities or sororities (Interfraternity Council and Panhellenic Association)
- Single gender organizations (recognized by IRS section 501 (c) (7))
- Club Sports recognized by the Mizzou Club Sports Federation
- Organizations that already receive student activity fee funds
- Recognized student organizations within 16 weeks of their initial recognition date with the University
*It is recommended that the organization’s fiscal contact attends Finance Training, so they are familiar with the processes the organization will need to perform.
Student organizations that are eligible for funding can submit budget requests to ORG in one of these categories:
Travel Funding covers the cost for events, conferences, or competitions that directly relate to a student organization and can be applied to:
- Transportation (Airfare or Mileage)
Travel Funding Policies:
- For funds allocated during the 2022 Fiscal Year (July 1 to June 30), organizations may only receive up to $4000.
- Funding will not be allocated to non-MU students.
- Only one form of travel will be funded, this means only travel to and from the location. Travel funds cannot be used to cover metro cards, taxi fare, or parking fees.
Event Services Funding
Event Services Funding can cover the following expenses:
- Bring guest speakers/artists/performers to campus
- Services such as rentals, technology, interpreters, etc.
- Request funds for experiential education opportunities like Venture Out
If requesting funds for Venture Out services, organizations must provide:
- Name of Workshop they want to attend,
- Names and Student ID numbers for participants,
- Explanation of why this activity will benefit the organization.
More “Event Services” information can be found in the Guidelines for Recognized Student Organizations.
General Expense Funding
General Expenses Funding covers operating costs to student organizations, this can include: copies, advertising, and on-campus equipment rental fees.
Things NOT covered by General Expenses include:
- Membership dues
- Personalized items (name tags, business cards, apparel)
- Equipment and supplies
ORG provides a set amount of funding to Recognized Student Organizations. To apply for funding, student organizations must submit budget requests at various times throughout the year. While we are happy to provide this resource to our organizations, an organization should never consider ORG its primary funding source. Our funding levels are always subject to change, and we’re limited by the large number of student organizations requesting assistance.
An organization also needs to plan ahead to receive ORG funding — we only accept budgets during specific periods throughout the academic year. See this year’s budget deadlines. Generally, our budget deadlines run a semester in advance; i.e., if you want funding for the spring semester, you must apply during the fall.
All ORG funds must be applied for in advance–that is, an organization can’t spend money on an event or item, and then apply for ORG funds to pay for it.
If an organization is interested in receiving ORG funding, it will need to submit a budget request. The budget request submissions are located on each organization’s Engage page, under the “Finance” tab, click on the blue button labeled “Create Request, and choose the option labeled “Budget Request”. Each type of request has a different form that will ask for specific information about the funds the organization is requesting and how they will benefit the organization. An organization must also provide independent documentation for all expenses. If an organization has questions about how to fill out the budget request contact ORG.
The completed budget request must be submitted during a specific budget deadline. All deadlines are on Fridays at 5 p.m., and late budgets are never accepted. All requests must be submitted through the Engage budget request portal; emailed budgets will not be accepted. We begin accepting budgets on the Monday two weeks prior to the deadline at 8 a.m. . The ORG staff is happy to look over any budget if a member of the organization stops by earlier during a budget week–this will give the organization time to make any necessary changes before the deadline. We also recommend that the fiscal contact submit the budget themselves, so they can receive the submission confirmation email and ensure that the request is accurate.
Once an organization submits a budget by the appropriate deadline, it will go to the Student Organization Allocation Committee (SOAC). SOAC will evaluate the budget and make funding decisions, which must be approved by the Dean of Students. The organization will be notified of its allocation one week after the budget deadline, and it will have an opportunity to appeal if there were any comments that need to be addressed.
All budget requests will receive a written memo stating whether the request was approved or denied one week after the application deadline. In some instances, a budget request may be denied by SOAC for a few reasons: the organization may not be in good standing, the committee may have needed clarification on the request, or it might have been missing documentation. Any denials are explained on the allocation memo.
If the organization would like to appeal its denial, it should submit the appeal form on Engage (which will be sent to you with your original budget notification), and attach any other documentation that was requested. After receiving an initial budget memo, the organization will have one week to submit an appeal for the budget by Friday at 5 pm. No late appeals will be considered. This one-time appeal is an organization’s only option to challenge a decision within a budget memo.
Who Approves ORG Funding?
The Student Organization Allocation Committee (SOAC) is a viewpoint-neutral student group responsible for the allocation of funds to recognized student organizations. This committee is comprised of students who are enrolled at the University of Missouri, with partial representation from the Missouri Students Association (MSA) and the Graduate Professional Council (GPC).
The Student Organization Allocation Committee (SOAC) is a viewpoint-neutral student group responsible for the allocation of funds to recognized student organizations. This committee is comprised of 10 students who are enrolled at the University of Missouri, with partial representation from the Missouri Students Association (MSA) and the Graduate Professional Council (GPC). If interested in becoming a member of SOAC, please contact ORG.
Spending Allocated Funds
With the exception of travel, an organization should never spend money first and then come to ORG for reimbursement. See below for information on how to receive any funds an organization was allocated.
If an organization has been allocated money for copies or printing, it needs to visit the Organization Resource Group (ORG) office, for the appropriate form. A member of the organization will take the form to DigiPrint, located in the MU Student Center. Once a member of the organization has printed the appropriate materials, they will bring the DigiPrint receipt back to the ORG office.
Mizzou Student Media Advertisements
If an organization has been allocated funds to place an approved ad with the Maneater student newspaper, KCOU, or MUTV, student organizations should fill out this form. The organization can work with the Student Design Center to design its ad.
If an organization has been allocated funds for an announcement in the MU Info, it must fill out the MU Info Request Form on Engage. These forms will be reviewed by the ORG Vice Chair of Finance to ensure they meet guidelines, and then ORG will submit them for publication. All MU Info requests should be submitted on Engage by the Thursday before the desired publication date. This deadline ensures that the announcement will be accepted by MU Info for publication.
If an organization was allocated Event Services funding, expect contact from the ORG Vice Chair of Finance, who will assist the organization with the payment process. If an organization has any questions about the preparation, use, or payment of Event Services funding, contact the Vice Chair of Finance.
Travel is the only funding category where an organization must pay for its expenses first, and then be reimbursed when it submits a Travel Reimbursement Form with the required documentation of travel. The ORG Chair will then work to verify the organization’s information and allocation, and process its payment.
ORG has compiled the information below to help organizations prepare travel reimbursements. If an organization have further questions, please contact us.
The travel reimbursement process starts months in advance of a trip, because organizations need to collect documentation of its approved expenses as they occur.
Upon return from the trip, an organization is required to assemble all necessary paperwork and turn in the completed reimbursement forms—within 45 days of return. There will be a 10% reduction in your allocation for each business day after 45 days. The organization is also responsible for dividing up the allocated funds among payers. The reimbursement paperwork must be submitted to the ORG office in person; emailed submissions will not be accepted. This is to ensure that any issues with reimbursement paperwork can be corrected quickly.
Within the Travel Reimbursement Form, all travelers must be listed with their student numbers. Proof of attendance is required for all listed travelers to receive reimbursement from ORG.
What items need to be turned in for reimbursement?
The Travel Reimbursement Form must be submitted along with proof of attendance and documentation of each approved expense.
What is proof of attendance?
Proof of attendance is simply proof that students went to and attended the approved travel event. This proof could include a picture of students at the event, event badges with their names, portfolios given at the event, etc. If an organization is unsure what it can or cannot use as proof of attendance, please contact us.
What documentation is needed for each expense?
For each expense type (transportation, lodging, registration), ORG needs two forms of documentation: documentation of the expense and proof payment.
Documentation of the expense is the original bill from the business that charges the expense. Examples are original hotel receipts, registration forms, and airline receipts. While an Internet printout detailing flight information (Expedia confirmation, etc.) is acceptable, it must contain of all the flight and passenger information. This receipt must be itemized to show what specific charges that were incurred to create the total bill. An example of this is a hotel receipt that divides the flat room rate and taxes to show the total amount charged.
This documentation is required so that ORG can verify it is paying for approved expenses only. For example, ORG can use a itemized hotel receipt to ensure it is not paying for any additional services such as room service.
Proof of payment is any document that shows the bill has been paid. An example is a credit card statement with the cardholder’s name printed on it. An organization does not need to provide additional documentation if a receipt for an expense includes the last four digits of the credit card used to pay the expense.
Organizations can only be reimbursed for approved expenses in the organization’s budget request.
Why are these items need to be turned in for reimbursement?
Certain items must be submitted with a travel reimbursement in order to process payment. These are required by University Accounting Services and not ORG. If a reimbursement is submitted without this information, Accounting Services will not be able to pay the request. Accounting Services does provide help and guidance on their website.
Helpful Fiscal Information
Many student organizations want to open bank accounts to manage their club funds. To open an account, an organization will have to establish an Employer Identification Number (EIN) for itself. EINs are similar to social security numbers, but for groups instead of individuals. It establishes an organization as a separate entity for the IRS. To apply for an EIN, visit the IRS website. If an organization applies for an EIN, please do not use the phrasing “University of Missouri ___________ (your group)” in your application. An organization may use MU or Mizzou, but if an organization uses University of Missouri it may cause confusion for the IRS and the University. Please also follow this guideline for the organization’s bank accounts.
Once an organization receives an EIN, please enter it in the “Tax ID” field of the organization’s Engage profile, so that future officers of the organization will know it.
We recommend that organizations list its adviser as one of the signatories on its bank account to ensure continuity and ease the transition between officers.
All Recognized Student Organizations are separate legal entities from the University of Missouri, and are therefore not eligible to claim the University’s tax exempt status. Organizations may apply for 501(c)3 tax exemption on its own. The Organization Resource Group strongly encourages Recognized Student Organizations wishing to file as a 501(c)3 to fully research the steps and requirements associated with process. As a reminder, the Office of Student Organizations and ORG cannot provide tax advice. If an organization wishes to seek status as a 501(c)3 organization we encourage the organization to discuss its tax situation with a tax adviser. ORG holds seminars with a Certified Public Accountant multiple times a year to discuss how organizations can apply for 501(c)3 status. Please consult ORG’s event calendar for dates of these seminars.
Other Sources of Funding
With more than 600 recognized student organizations, it’s impossible for ORG funding to cover every expense. Student organizations are expected to generate funding on their own through fundraising, collecting dues or applying for other monies on campus. Some organizations may be able to seek funding from the Student Fee Capital Improvement Committee (SFCIC), which funds large, one-time projects. Others may be able to apply for a grant from the Diversity Fee or even seek outside sponsorship. Learn more about fundraising and event planning.