Funding sought by ComSoc clubs exceeds projected available funds

ComSoc clubs requested 1.8 times more financing than all of 2021

ComSoc clubs are back in business at Goodes Hall.

Commerce students are eager to return to in-person events after two years of coffee-less coffee chats, Zoom conferences, and LinkedIn friendships.

Clubs ratified under the Commerce Society (ComSoc) requested $289,537 in funding for the fall 2022 semester—a number that surpasses ComSoc’s forecasted revenue for the entire year. This information was outlined in a presentation delivered in a meeting with a finance director of ComSoc and the co-chairs of ComSoc’s 55 clubs on Sept. 11.

ComSoc clubs rely on sponsorship funding for events, with some clubs also being supported by loans. All non-businesses in the society receive an Operating Budget from ComSoc’s Operating Fee Pool, according to ComSoc’s current bylaws

The funding requested represents 1.8 times the total demand in 2021—a year that largely did not permit in-person events due to COVID-19—which sat at $164,421.

The presentation said ComSoc’s projected available funds for the entire year is $215,690, which is funded in part by the mandatory student fee of $55 and an additional optional $15 student fee.

The ComSoc finance department is responsible for overseeing the financials of over 70 stakeholders, including internal and external entities ratified under ComSoc, according to the presentation.

The presentation proposed possible solutions like raising awareness about funding opportunities and granting loans that will benefit the greater student body.

“ComSoc is not immune to current marketplace financial uncertainty, and we are working diligently to minimize risk by ensuring clubs operate effectively and efficiently,” ComSoc executive team RMK said in an email statement to The Journal.

The team said they’re “confident” in supporting all of ComSoc’s clubs and have a “strong” financial position.

“We are grateful for all leaders' patience, dedication, and openness in working collaboratively to reach creative solutions... we continue to work with clubs to ensure financial stability,” team RMK said.

ComSoc clubs such as Queen’s Technology & Media Association (QTMA) were among clubs planning to host more in-person events this fall, Mahir Hamid, QTMA co-chair, said in an email statement to The Journal. 

QTMA has an internal product development team launching four software products with a “leaner” budget and plans to host more external events.

The club was “denied” funding in several areas with the ComSoc finance team giving thorough reasoning and applying a consistent policy to all clubs, according to Hamid.

“Nevertheless, we’re extremely grateful for their generosity and help throughout this unprecedented year and can’t wait to use our budget to good use.”

Getting sponsorship this year is challenging for some ComSoc clubs, according to Hunter MacKinnon, co-chair of Queen’s Entrepreneurs’ Competition (QEC).

Companies are tightening policies around money and are less likely to “hand [it] out,” making it difficult for clubs to secure sponsorship deals.

“When talking to long-term sponsors, [they say] it’s not as easy to spend this year. Money’s tight all around the world,” he said in an interview with The Journal.

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