Beginning this term, the Student Activities Funding Commission, which is responsible for allocating budgets to support the more than 500 student organizations on campus, has moved funding decisions for club sports to the Cornell Club Athletic Council with a lower spending cap, complicating equipment, uniforms, and other financing. brought. sports team needs.
The CSC announced this change in July so that the relevant funding council would fund the organizations within its scope and the most knowledgeable lead commissioners in their fields could review the budget.
CSC also said that in the past clubs have not spent the total allocated funds. Therefore, the CSC said lowering the cap could increase financing flexibility and prevent some clubs from storing unused funds. However, changes to the CSC hindered teams’ ability to change equipment, pay for training grounds, and hold or participate in matches.
This became a problem for Bella Solomon ’24, the captain of Cornell women’s club football, who needed to replace her team’s equipment.
“We usually get new balls every year because usually some of them go flat in between each year or some you can’t use anymore,” said Solomon, captain of Cornell women’s club football. However, this year we did not change any of them because our budget was very limited.”
In addition to the shortage of sports equipment, Solomon noted that the team was unable to get jerseys for new team members, which affected player uniformity.
“We must take [new team members] shorts and socks, and we normally have enough money to cover it from the team’s finances. “But this year, unfortunately, we had no money to replace these shorts and socks, so we had to make them pay out of their own pockets.” “One of the girls has to wear a very old jersey that doesn’t match the other jerseys. We don’t all have kits that look the same, which is kind of frustrating but we can’t change them.”
For men’s club football, budget cuts have led them to find full-size regulated pitches to play on campus, rather than paying for pitches off campus. However, it will be difficult for club sports to gain ground as the fields are also used by PE classes or other intramural sports.
“There are really limited resources on campus for club teams,” said Sebastian Barquin Sanchez ’22, president of Cornell Mundial FC men’s club football.
Jeffrey Shen ’23 of Cornell Santos Football Club noted that although the university has built a new turf field on North Campus suitable for football teams, they are still competing for place with other teams.
“It’s a little more convenient for them to build the pitch, so not everyone has to drive. But there are three club teams and there is PE football. It’s literally like a battle for space,” Shen said. [it] now booked on wednesday and thursday. But PE football doesn’t end until six. So we can only do it from six to eight, and by eight it’s already dark.”
Faced with problems, club leaders are looking for different ways to make up for the budget cut, hoping to keep their clubs running normally. Teams like Solomon’s had to turn to collecting dues for team members and planning more fundraising events.
“We always use all the money allocated to our team and then we usually have a fundraiser at the end of the season to fund our trip to the Nationals. [if we qualify]”However, we need more than one fundraiser this year before the season ends and we hope that this period will be sufficient to cover the remainder of our expenses.”
Sanchez also highlighted the need to look to external links to support the team financially.
“I’ve appointed a new head of external finance on the team because we need someone to reach out to the alumni network and we need someone to run the Cornell Giving Day business,” Sanchez said. “And we may have to go back to asking players for money.”