SABAC Travel/Event Funding
What is SABAC?
The Student Activities Budget Advisory Committee (SABAC) is a committee made up of students, faculty, and staff that is charged with making recommendations to the VP for Student Affairs regarding funding for registered student organizations (RSO’s). The funds that are allocated come from the pool of Student Activity Fees collected from students at KSU, thus Student Activity Fees should only benefit KSU students. SABAC meets periodically throughout the fall and spring semesters for individual event/travel requests, as well as once a year for annual budget requests. More detailed info including the meetings schedule can be found on the SABAC website sabac.kennesaw.edu. This guide is for travel or event funding and is general in nature. All groups interested in obtaining SABAC funds are highly encouraged to visit the SABAC website and read the SABAC protocol manual.
What can the funds be used for?
Travel: RSO’s may request SABAC assistance to support student travel when that travel is specifically related to the purpose and/or functions of that organization and the participants are representing the university. This typically includes travel assistance for students presenting at conferences, participating in competitions, or related activities where there is some direct benefit not only to the individual student traveling, but also a greater benefit to the broader student body and the university. Generally, travel funds can be used for the following (exceptions may apply, please see the SABAC protocol manual for more details):
- Hotel rooms
- Registration fees
Events: RSO’s may request SABAC funds to assist with the hosting of an on-campus event that is open to all students. Generally speaking these events are larger in scale and will attract more than the membership of the student group(s) that is hosting the event. All event details and expenditures must comply with applicable University policies and protocols. Some of the items which may be funded through SABAC event funds include the following (exceptions may apply, please see the SABAC protocol manual for more details):
- Independent contractor fees for a speaker or attraction (e.g. caricature artist)
- Risk management related expenses (i.e. security)
- Event production and promotion expenses (including equipment rental, printing, etc.)
- Food and refreshments
- Promotional items
How do I get the funds?
The process for receiving SABAC funds is as follows:
1) Plan your event or travel, being sure to get quotes/estimates and all details for your event/travel.
2) Fill out the appropriate form for travel/event funding found at sabac.kennesaw.edu before the deadline.
3) Receive notification that your submission was accepted. You should receive an email from the SABAC secretary notifying you of the date of the SABAC meeting you will be asked to attend.
4) Attend (or don’t attend) the SABAC meeting. On the date that your proposal is added to the agenda, you reserve the right to have representatives from your RSO attend the meeting and make a presentation regarding your request (5 minutes max) as well as answer questions from the members of the SABAC committee (5 minutes max). However, it is not required. If no organization representatives are in attendance, the committee will make a decision based on the submitted materials alone. Email the SABAC secretary if no representatives are available to attend the meeting.
5) Wait for SABAC to make a decision and the VPSA to approve SABAC's recommendation. After the presentation and/or discussion for your presentation, the members of SABAC will make a decision to fund, not fund, or partially fund your request. After the presentation and Q and A stages of your time at the SABAC meeting, technically you’re done. You won’t be able to speak at this point in the meeting.
6) If your proposal was funded in whole or in part, please contact the Business Manager for Student Life as soon as possible to make sure you are following protocol and can receive your funds.
Any tips or suggestions?
Here is a list of helpful tips to use when deciding whether or not to request SABAC funding, and what makes a strong request versus a weak one:
- Know the protocols. Read the SABAC manual. Talk to Student Activities staff. Remember this is a general guide and there are a lot of moving parts from start to finish when it comes to SABAC funds (e.g. food per diems, travel funding caps, mandatory attendance tracking, preferred vendors, etc.)
- Plan ahead. You should know your event/travel inside and out. This includes accounting for every possible expense, protocol, and operational detail. Groups that have a handle on prior planning make stronger proposals.
- Make smart money decisions. Don’t waste money. If there is a cheaper hotel, t shirt, or food item then use that cheaper item. Be prepared to defend why your choice of product or vendor is the smart, economic choice.
- Shoulder part of the financial burden. SABAC is not typically fond of being the sole financial backer of any event/travel. Find a way through membership dues, fundraising, or other efforts to offset the cost to SABAC.
- Present to SABAC. While it is an RSO’s choice to attend or not attend a meeting, you can answer questions that the committee may have. A form cannot answer questions.
- Why are you going? If this is a conference where you or your members will be presenting a formal session? Are you attending only for personal benefit? Is this a conference or a retreat? The strongest proposals are those where the attendees are going to be representing Kennesaw State as active participants in a professional conference/competition. This doesn’t mean simply attending, but rather presenting a session or actively competing.
- Is this event for all students? Do you have any way of proving that more than just your members will attend this event? How will you prove this?
- Is this a meeting with food or an activity, such as a cook out, lecturer, carnival, etc.? Activity style events are more likely to be funded by SABAC than meetings with food.
- Be able to articulate how this event brings something unique or new to campus. SABAC is more reluctant to fund similar or duplicate style events.
- Have a marketing plan. Strong event proposals have accounted for how they will attract a wide attendance.
- Complete the prior food approval form if you plan on requesting funds for food.
- Complete the catering exemption form if requesting catering from an off campus vendor.
- Go ahead and have your space booked for your event if possible. It’s not a good look when you’re talking about an event that you don’t have space reserved for. Minimally, you should have an idea of what spaces are available for the dates and times you are looking at for hosting your event(s).