Who knows where the money goes?

How do you know I’m not embezzling student funds? You don’t — would you know how to find out?   

What a UFV student pays in tuition depends on which and how many courses they take. On top of classes, students pay semester-based fees. These go to the Student Union — paying off the Student Union Building’s $10–million mortgage, the U-Pass, the campus connector, Student Union IT tech support services, and the health and dental (which is an annual fee if you’re a full-time student).

Per semester, Student Union fees total $141.23, plus the annual $215.59 health and dental fee.

Similarly, UFV’s fun societies, CIVL 101.7 radio station and The Cascade newspaper, are predominantly funded by students. CIVL collects $7.85 per semester, and The Cascade $6.12. Are you happy with your subscription?

As a fee-payer, you’re also a member — meaning you can get involved, contribute, attend board meetings, vote for board members, or run for the board yourself. You can also not attend board meetings, if you think that’s more worth your $6.12. Do you believe in this institution? Because you’re funding it.

Over the 2016/17 year, (according to their official budget) SUS pulled in $648,000 from student fees, and oversaw a total revenue of $775,000. CIVL accumulated $170,000 from students, and generated a total revenue of $234,000. The Cascade garnered $131,000 from students, total revenue of $138,000.

Of course, if you were to divide, for example, The Cascade’s student fee revenue by the cost of student fees, you’d get roughly 21,400 — the approximate number of times fees were paid that year. Multiply that by Student Society fees (excluding health & dental fees), and you’d get closer to $3 million, depending on how you do the math.

What The Cascade pulls in is no small amount — over $130,000 annually. Granted, by the time we make a newspaper, there’s hardly anything left over to pocket, let alone feed ourselves with. Regardless, there’s money in this organization. Consequently, it needs to be allocated properly.

Though we’re separate entities, the three campus societies together touch well over $1.1 million a year (over $4 million if we’re counting all the money). That’s a fair chunk of change, I sure hope whoever’s looking after it has the best interest of the organizations’ constituents in mind.

You’ve heard, “the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” Or, in context: your mom isn’t going to keep financial watch of all the organizations you have invested interest in — maybe you should learn to follow the money.

Make sure there’s a new edition of The Cascade on the stands each week. If there isn’t, you’ll know we’re funnelling our Sir Robert Bordens into Cayman Island accounts.