SOFA | Student Organization Funding

Special Note:  There have been significant changes to SOFA effective Fall 2019, please continue to read for full details regarding how SOFA is operating this academic year!

Please read the entire page before clicking the link at the bottom to submit an application!

The Student Organization Funding Advisory (SOFA) Committee serves as the SUA's body for assessing funding requests from Student Organizations (SOs) on our campus.  SOFA is comprised of representatives from the ten colleges in addition to representatives appointed from the Big Five organizations.  This committee meets twice every quarter to assess where approximately $60,000 in Undergraduate Student Fees gets allocated.  

The step-by-step process for funding allocations is as follows:

  1. An Application Period (Two Weeks) is established to allow student organizations to apply for funding.
  2. SOFA contacts the Student Organization to inform them of their time slot at the upcoming SOFA meeting to present their budget.  SOFA usually meets very quickly after applications close to expedite the funding request process.  See the section below on How to Prepare for Your Presentation to SOFA!
  3. SOFA presents these recommendations to the Student Union Assembly for their review and so that college spaces may provide input regarding the final funding decisions.
  4. The following week, the SUA makes a final vote on the funding requests.
  5. Upon approval, Student Organizations are contacted by the SUA Treasurer with their funding award.
  6. Finally, a funding transfer is established from the SUA that must be accepted by the RSO's financial analyst or advisor.
  7. After the event, the student organization submits an Evaluation form regarding the event.

Note:  All funding transfers require the use of a FOAPAL (Fund Organization Account Program Activity Location) number.  If the Student Organization does not have access to a FOAPAL number, the SUA cannot directly fund that organization.  We recommend that Student Organizations in this situation either seek sponsorship from a UCSC Unit or Department (that will allow the SO to utilize their FOAPAL number) or seek funding from other sources like the Division of Student Success.

How to Prepare for Your Presentation to SOFA

Preparing your case to SOFA to get your Student Organization the funding it needs can be an intimidating prospect.  That said, it is imperative that SOFA is able to meet with SO members and assess a presentation on its own merits.  SOFA is not a formal space and therefore there is no need to treat your presentation like an intensive interview.  What SOFA values more than anything else is information and an assessment of your funding request based on how it impacts the student body.  With that said, you can follow these steps to prepare for your presentation.

  1. Prepare a full budget for your funding request.
    • We have prepared a Sample Budget for your convenience to make this easier!  
    • You can also contact the SUA Treasurer at suatreas@ucsc.edu to ask any questions!
  2. Prepare answers to the following questions with any supporting evidence you can provide:
    • Does the event or program supply opportunities for the educational benefits and personal and social enrichment that derive from participation in extracurricular activities?
    • Goals: Has the organization met its goals in the past?
    • Benefits: The impact of the event/program on the campus community as a whole, community service.
    • Uniqueness: Avoidance of duplication of efforts or services by other organizations, events or programs.
    • Diversity: Does the program/event advance the accessibility of the University to historically underrepresented groups?
    • Impact: How many students will participate in, attend and/or benefit from the event?
  3. Prepare a visual aid (Google Slides, PowerPoint, Posters, etc) to help convey the importance of your request and the underlying details about it.
  4. Brief any members of your SO who will be joining in the presentation so that everyone presenting is comfortable answering questions and explaining the funding request.
  5. Submit all of the prepared materials to suatreas@ucsc.edu at least 24 hours before the meeting (if not already included in your SOFA application) so that they can be readied for the meeting.

Funding Schedule for the 2019-2020 Academic Year 

The following is the effective SOFA schedule for 2019-2020.  This schedule has been established to give Student Organizations an understanding of the timeline for funding requests throughout the entire academic year.  Although the SUA and SOFA intend to fully stick to this schedule, unforeseen circumstances may cause a shift.  In such a case, any applying Student Organization will be contacted by the SUA Treasurer and this page will be updated.  

The Generic Timeline is as follows:

Table of Generic SOFA Timeline
Quarter Applications Open Applications Close SOFA Meets Introduced to the SUA  SUA Approves Anticipated Fund Availability Date

Fall Quarter

Tuesday, Week 2  Tuesday, Week 4

Thursday, Week 4 

Tuesday, Week 5

Tuesday, Week 6

Friday, Week 6

Tuesday, Week 5 Tuesday, Week 7 Thursday, Week 7 Tuesday, Week 8  Tuesday, Week 10 Friday, Week 10
Winter/Spring Quarters Tuesday, Week 3 Tuesday, Week 5 Thursday, Week 5 Tuesday, Week 6 Tuesday, Week 7 Friday, Week 7
Tuesday, Week 6 Tuesday, Week 8 Thursday, Week 8 Tuesday, Week 9 Tuesday, Week 10 Friday, Week 10

Here is how this will be applied in terms of actual dates for the 2019-2020 Academic Year!

Table of Specific SOFA Timeline
Quarter Applications Open Applications Close SOFA Meets Introduced to the SUA  SUA Approves Anticipated Fund Availability Date

Fall Quarter 2019

Tuesday, October 8th  Tuesday, October 22nd 

Thursday, October 24th 

Tuesday, October 29th 

Tuesday, November 5th

Friday, November 8th 

Tuesday, October 29th Tuesday, November 12th  Thursday, November 14th Tuesday, November 19th  Tuesday, December 3rd Friday, December 6th
Winter Quarter 2020 Tuesday, January 21st Tuesday, February 4th Thursday, February 6th  Tuesday, February 11th Tuesday, February 18th Friday, February 21st
Tuesday, February 11th  Tuesday, February 25th  Thursday, February 27th Tuesday, March 3rd Tuesday, March 10th Friday, March 13th
Spring Quarter 2020 Tuesday, April 14th Tuesday, April 28th Thursday, April 30th Tuesday, May 5th Tuesday, May 12th Friday, May 15th
Tuesday, May 5th Tuesday, May 19th Thursday, May 21st Tuesday, May 26th Tuesday, June 2nd Friday, June 5th

 

Stipulations

The following stipulations apply to all funding awards. The Assembly may also add additional stipulations to individual requests.

  • All programs which receive funding from any SUA elective office/commission or the General Fund shall publicly recognize SUA as a sponsor of said program/event (e.g. Mic announcements, T-Shirts, Publications, etc.).
  • All parties which receive funding from any SUA elective office/commission or RSO and Reserve funds must turn in an SUA Programming Evaluation form within three weeks after the event has passed explaining how SUA money was used and how the event succeeded and failed and where organizers plan on improving future events or programs.
  • The Student Union Assembly will not allocate money for any event where alcohol or any other mind-altering substances will be available.
  • The Student Union Assembly will not finance programs or events retroactively.
    • There are generally two weeks between when presentations are heard and the Assembly makes a final decision—please keep this in mind when making a request.

SOFA Application Open (October 2019)

  • The SOFA Application period for October is currently open (October 8, 2019) and receiving applications until Tues October 22, 2019 at 11:59pm. There will be no extensions. Late submissions will not be reviewed.
  • SOFA (October 2019) application can be found here
  • SOFA (November 2019) application coming soon!

 

Thank you for reading and learning more about SOFA this year!  Please click the button below to begin your application.  If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please direct them to the SUA Treasurer at suatreas@ucsc.edu  Have a great day!