Sierra Prasad ‘21, became the Student Government Association (SGA) Treasurer this last semester and has quickly changed how SGA relates to clubs. Her position as Treasurer of SGA means she works with two areas of funding: all club and theme house funds and the venture fund. This second funding avenue relates to expenses which can be applied for use by both students and faculty, club or non-club leaders, for field trips and both academic and non-academic events.
Prasad laughed and said “Fun fact, this fund is built from the money collected by the vending machines, so everyone is pitching in and that money is going back into the campus itself!”
These funding applications are looked over by the finance committee for approval determination. This committee is made of three senators from each class year and the Deputy Treasurer, Elizabeth Eaton ‘20. Through this committee, Prasad wants to set a new president that states, if applications are denied, those applicants will have the opportunity to talk with Prasad or Eaton and student bankers to improve their applications or proposals to be resubmitted. This committee also works with treasurers in group training sessions to help them understand and run club accounting.
Prasad oversees all actions of the treasurer and SGA accounting and has worked to make the SGA system of funding more efficient. She has divided clubs into categories, delegating specific types of clubs to Finance Senators. She hopes this new system will provide a better understanding of treasury system and help Club Treasurers understand how to apply for funds and make budgets. “I was the Deputy Treasurer working under the previous Treasurer and I grew to deeply understand the process. I was interested in how in-depth the work was with clubs and programming.”Prasad said, when asked why she became interested in the position of treasurer of SGA. “It’s an avenue that many aren’t interested in, but I saw an opportunity to have an actual impact on the campus”
By updating the Engage finance page to provide all dates and resources, Prasad hopes that accounting for clubs is accessible for users. She said, “My main goal is to better bridge the gap between the SGA finance committee and club treasurers.” Prasad continued. “I am creating an open dialogue for better communication, so clubs are able to really take charge of their funds in a responsible way.” Through transparency in the system, Prasad hopes that there will be improvement for the future treasurers of both SGA and clubs on campus. In her own role as SGA treasurer, she hopes it will hold the position accountable and connected to prevent miscommunication and problems with funds.
Prasad said, “I think going out of the box is important to the position and it is about doing more than just the finances by working to make real positive change on campus.” She aims to create real lasting understanding of budgeting and club funding, giving clubs a platform to be heard and understood without confusion or frustration.