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The Student Fee Recommendation Committee listens to presentations at Weber State University on Jan. 27. (Chris Nichols / The Signpost)

The Student Fee Recommendation Committee met on Jan. 27 to hear presentations from different departments on how they feel students could benefit from receiving funds collected from student fees.

The presenters, who are faculty members of different groups on campus, explained why they believe that their department or group needs a certain amount of money allocated to them by the student fee funds.

While this standard forum-style of meeting is traditional for dispersing money, the SFRC is unlike other financial committees on Weber State University’s campus. This group is comprised of mostly students who make the decisions of where and to whom the student fee money is dispersed.

The students who are on the committee are representatives of different organizations on campus. Their opinions and perspectives from those organizations determine where the funds are designated.

“I like Weber State University’s approach of having a committee comprised mostly of students who benefit from all the services, programs and initiatives their fees fund,” said Jan Winniford, Vice President for Student Affairs.

As those presenting plead their cases before the committee, the students asked questions to the presenters, such as “If we were not able to allot you the money requested, how else could you obtain those funds?”

Since the money being discussed comes from students, faculty board members see it as a necessary facet that students are running the committee.

“Students are the primary consumers and beneficiaries of fee-supported programs and services,” said Brett Perozzi, associate vice president for student affairs. “Having students be the primary decision makers on how funds are allocated aligns nicely.”

The committee had over ten presentations lasting around fifteen minutes each. The presenters ranged from departmental groups, such as athletics and Arts & Humanities, to campus centers, including the Center for Community Engaged Learning or Disability services.

The process of how student fee money is designated is little-known to most students on Weber State’s campus, but Weber State University Student Association President and committee member Greg Woodfield feels that students should know about these types of meetings.

“Students should know that student fees are being spent for the improvement and growth of Weber State as a whole,” Woodfield said. “Those decisions are being discussed and made by student representatives.”

As financial proposals continued, presenters’ requests ranged from financial aid with traveling for competitions, hiring new personnel or assisting their current employees.

Some may view a meeting discussing money allotment as trivial, but Woodfield encourages students to learn more about where their student fees are going.

“I feel it’s very important for students to understand that many lives can be affected from this committee,” he said. About the meeting’s focal point, Woodfield stated “Students play a vital role when they’re the cynosure of our discussion.”

While these proposals have been given, another round of presentations awaits the committee on Feb. 3.

After all presentations have been given, the SFRC will take time to deliberate about where and to whom they feel that student fee funds should go.

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