#mo money mo problems
Capital Investment Grants Announced
Selfie time with his new camera #nomakeup

Selfie time with his new camera #nomakeup

CCSC’s Uchechi Iteogu, Co-Chair of the Capital Investment Fund, just announced the fund’s grant winners for this year. Six clubs made the cut, out of eleven applications, and a total of $11, 235 was awarded.

The four undergraduate student councils created the Capital Investment fund in September 2012 to help clubs with high equipment costs fund a specific piece of equipment. Club athletic teams have been among the primary recipients of the fund, as well as campus music groups and those with expensive media equipment. Last year, seven clubs received grants that totaled $15,000.

The winners for this year and what they intend to purchase are below:

  • Columbia University Film Productions – $2625, for a new camera
  • Columbia University Archery Club – $1400, for beginner bows and miscellaneous equipment including sights, finger tabs, targets
  • Capoeira Club – $1000, for  new instruments including a berimabu and atabaque
  • Columbia Tae Kwon Do – $500, to replace a recently-broken standing heavy bag
  • Hindu Students Organization – $2000, to replace their mandap (religious altar) and to purchase tablecloths and the Golu (religious icon)
  • Lacrosse Club – $3800, to purchase matching uniforms and high-quality helmets

Ruff life via Shutterstock

Bwoglines: Gettin Paid Edition
Bwog gets paid the big bucks...

Bwog makes it rain

Breaking News: College students don’t always earn salaries they want; blame it on their alma mater. Columbia’s Andrew Delbanco reports. (NYT)

The situation in Syria is still unclear, but it appears U.S.-funded weapons may now be reaching Syrian rebels. (NPR)

An Egyptian court has frozen the assets of top Muslim Brotherhood officials, although the freeze may only be temporary. (ABC)

Microsoft is launching a $40 billion buyback of its shares, reflecting the CFO’s “commitment to returning cash to our shareholders.” (USA Today)

And finally, the N.I.H. has allotted $40 million of its $100 million brain initiative budget, with one of the private partners in the initiative stating, “They’ve given the vision for a grand challenge … They just need to get the money.” (NYT)

Getting the big bucks via Shutterstock.

SGA Townhall: What Does Barnard Do With My Money?!
shutterstock_123579487

Mo money mo problems

Last night, SGA met in Barnard Hall’s James Room to discuss the crux of polite society: money. Having a rather tabula rasa mind on the subject, Maddie Ball was there to get the facts.

SGA knows that paying tuition can feel a bit like throwing money into a black hole. So, to allay your fears (or perhaps add to them), the rep council invited Chief Operating Officer Greg Brown to shed a bit of light into the depths of that black hole. After all, who doesn’t want to know what Barnard does with all your hard earned cash? To start, Brown laid down some cold hard facts: about 30% of your dough goes to your professors and about 20% goes to your peers as financial aid. The rest is spent in a medley of ways, some going to students services, health services, and food services, to name a few.

While you might not believe it, in just 2003 the average cost of attending Barnard was only $37,103 (it was a simpler time, apparently). By comparison, now it costs a whopping $57,312. Brown says, however, that for the future Barnard needs to start “working with what [they] have.” In other words, Barnard is committed to keeping tuition increases to a minimum, and further, that Barnard is already at maximum student enrollment.

(more…)

CCSC: FinAid, Bacchanal, and Drainage

Senior Satow Correspondents Sarah Ngu and Maren Killackey report from this week’s CCSC meeting. Topics covered at the meeting include the financial aid office, Bacchanal and their debts, along with various other policies along the way.

Financial aid, Bacchanal, proper drainage... gotta have those Benjamins!

FinAid:

Student Services Rep Karishma Habbu has continued meetings with administrators from the Undergraduate Office of Financial Aid. It appears the Undergrad OFA is finally beginning to make strides towards an internal review based on the feedback it received from students, oh… last semester.

Bacchanal:

CCSC President Aki Terasaki made the announcement that, after extensive discussions with Dean Schollenberger and Dean Martinez, they have offered to cover the entire Bacchanal debt (though the offer comes with the caveat that a new event review process must be pursued). Terasaki heinously stole USenator Kenny Durell’s thunder as Durell is popularly credited with doing the legwork for the Bacchanal investigation; Durell then made a comprehensive presentation to the Council regarding his inquiry into the event’s financial situation. Durell’s report included a breakdown of Bacchanal’s expected vs. actual costs for last year, which, in the case of security fees, amounted to a difference of more than $9,000 and, in the case of facilities fees, more than $10,000. Although the Deans have agreed to reimburse Bacchanal the “full” $16,107, the total debt was more along the lines of $25,400. That missing $9K chunk was paid for by the Student Government Security Fund and therefore didn’t show up on the books, however it still represents lost Student Life fees.

Policy:

VP Ryan Cho will meet with CC Senators sometime this week about redoing the Pupin Plaza and Amsterdam Bridge. For the seven of you out there who have yet to invest in a solid pair of rainboots, this is particularly good news because in the resolution Cho will discuss is mention of, among other things, plans to fix the infamous Plaza drainage (or rather, lack thereof). Also, in response to some students’ concerns, Cho said definitively that graduate libraries are open to undergraduates, with the exception of the Law library (only during finals) and the top floor of Uris.

Co-sponsorhips:

The Council announced that it would be seeking proportional sponsorship from SGA for Bacchanal, as they do not currently contribute to funding for the even, despite significant Barnard attendance to it.

You Know It’s Finals Season When…:

The meeting ended in record time at 9:00 p.m. It would have ended around 8:55 p.m. had the conversation not unexpectedly descended into excited chatter about what food should be served during next meeting’s Holiday Party.

Cold, hard cash via Wikimedia Commons

SGA: Full-Time Controversy and Co-Sponsored Debts

Discussion of debt ensued

Tuition drama? Talk of co-sponsorships? Debt? Peter Sterne held his own at Monday night’s action-packed SGA meeting; here’s the rundown.

  • A-Hinks stopped by to answer questions about Barnard’s new full-time enrollment policy. She stressed that Barnard has always expected students to enroll as full-time students for all eight semesters, though they have granted exceptions in the past. Going forward, students will need a compelling reason (e.g. a medical condition) to get an exception. The rationale for the change is largely financial: Barnard students pay about $10,000 less in tuition if they go part-time for a semester. The consensus of the SGA reps and A-Hinks was that 20–50 students (out of a class of 600) go part-time each semester, meaning Barnard is losing out on $400,000 to $1,000,000 of tuition revenue each year. Students can still opt to graduate a semester or year early to avoid paying a full four years of tuition. This doesn’t deprive the college of tuition revenue, said A-Hinks, because Barnard can always admit a new student to take that student’s place.
  • After Dean Hinkson spoke, she faced a multitude of questions from SGA Reps and concerned Barnard students. Most focused on the implementation of the policy, rather than the change itself. Why, many students asked, was the policy being applied to juniors who had already planned their academic careers assuming they would be able to take go part-time for their last semester, in addition to underclassmen? A-Hinks only answered that the policy change had to be implemented in a timely manner, which one might reasonably conclude means that Barnard really needs the full-time tuition revenue as soon as possible. 
  • Hinkson also insisted that the change should not have a major effect on students, since they could always graduate early or change their class schedule. One junior explained to A-Hinks that her major, History, required a two-semester thesis seminar, but she could not afford to enroll full-time for both semesters of senior year. As a result, she’d have to change her major. A-Hinks offered no response, though SGA President Jessica Blank volunteered that Political Science is a great major that only requires a one-semester thesis seminar.
  • In general, the Dean seemed willing to listen to suggestions on how to amend or modify the policy, but had nothing to say to those who simply opposed it. Only seven students had even emailed her about the change, she told SGA, though over 500 people have signed a petition, which she has not yet read, opposing the new policy.
  • SGA considered whether to fund joint co-sponsorships with the other councils (CCSC, ESC, and GSSC) for various clubs. Far and away the biggest ask came from Bacchanal, for a co-sponsorship of $18,000 (from all councils) due to costs associated with moving the location of the Spring concert. Like CCSC, and ESC, SGA voted to table the issue, until they have more time to discuss the myriad of issues surrounding Bacchanal (which was already allocated $88,000 for the year).

Mo money mo problems

DSpar Joins the Ranks of Goldman Sachs

Barnard’s first lady has just been elected to the Board of Directors of Goldman Sachs, where she will serve on the Audit, Risk, Compensation and Corporate Governance and Nominating committees. As you probably know, the financial firm, chaired by powerhouse Lloyd Blankfein, has a less than pristine reputation. Last year, the SEC went after Goldman for exploiting the collapse of the housing market, and two years before, the company came under scrutiny for doling out millions in bonuses after receiving TARP funds. We hope Spar can inspire Wall Street to be a stronger, more beautiful place, sparkling with (real) diamond-encrusted thongs (NB these are no longer sold at the Barnard store, although there is a “BLING” section.)

Full press release after the jump!

Bacchanal Seeking Greener Pastures

Tradition interrupted! Low Steps will not bear witness to the Abacchalyse. Instead, Bachannal organizers confirmed today in an email that the concert will unconventionally be held on the West Lawn in front of Butler. Columbia’s event management people made a “managerial error” and overlooked a conflict with the construction of graduation bleachers. So unless you’re on your feet, dancing the night away, your butt might get wet.

Full email below.

Hello Columbia Community,

Bacchanal was notified on Monday that due to construction of the graduation bleachers, we will not be able to have the stage in its traditional location on Low Plaza. Despite our booking the space in November, there appears to have been a managerial error regarding the space reservation which was not noticed until this past weekend.

Instead, the stage will be located on the West Lawn, in front of Butler Library. If you are facing Butler, it is the large lawn on the right.

While the move is very challenging for us logistically and financially, we are working closely with public safety, facilities and University Event Management to ensure that the concert is still face-meltingly awesome for you.

We appreciate your understanding and look forward to seeing you on April 30th.

For more updates, please visit our event page: http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/event.php?eid=168240363229052

Love,

Bacchanal

The Suite Life of Desperate Freshmen

The New York housing market really is insane! This flyer, spotted in McBain, offers nearly a thousand dollars each to upperclassmen willing to throw in their lot with rich but ridiculous rising sophomores. Of course, plenty of upperclassmen use freshpeople fears about the housing lottery to score some sweet suite singles, but it seems few realize just how much of a literal goldmine their priority numbers really are.

Identity of poster blocked! You're not really supposed to do this...

Bwoglines: Questioning Edition

Why do I look so fancy? I'm a wizard!

What do we do up here? (NYU Local)

MTA faked inspections. Safety first? (Gothamist)

What’s so great about gold, anyway? (NPR)

How much cash money can Harry Potter make in one day? A lot. (NY Daily News)

Kravis Makes $100 Million Donation to BSchool’s New Manhattanville Home

Columbia is doing pretty well for itself uptown recently. Business School Dean Glenn Hubbard just sent BSchool students an email notifying them of the donation, which was made by Henry R. Kravis, BSchool class of 1969 and current cochair of the School’s Board of Overseers. The Uptown BSchool will be comprised of two buildings, one of which will be called (surprise!) the Henry R. Kravis Building.

Read on for Hubbard’s full email. (more…)

Find Love on the CU Rally Bus

It's like the Woodstock of our generation--kind of. Anyway, the bus should look like this.

Columbians Jordan Schau and Justin Turetsky want you to ride their bus. For $49.99, this magic bus will take you from the Broadway gates to the Lincoln Memorial for Jon Stewart’s Rally to Restore Sanity and Stephen Colbert’s March to Keep Fear Alive. It’s all happening on October 30th.

How’d J&J come up with such an ingenious plan? According to Jordan, “the idea came to us in a dream (simultaneous dreams).” It’s like Glee and Inception, combined!

Honestly, a Ulysses S. Grant is a lot to shell out, especially since Arianna Huffington already pledged free bus rides. And there’s no Ms. Frizzle on this bus. Womp Womp.

But Jordan and Justin can promise something priceless: love. “Not only do I think people will find love on this bus,” says Jordan. “I am operating under the assumption that I will find my wife.” Cheers to that.

Photo from Wikimedia Commons

Boringside Heights: Why Does Everything Cost (More) Money?
Everything has increased in price, but luckily, life has improved ever so slightly here in Morningside.

  • Pastries in Nussbaum have labels. What’s life without a little bit of mystery?
  • Mel’s fry deal: Fries are now $1.75 with a burger and soda/draft beer. (Fries are usually $4.)
  • There’s a new mushroom salad topping at the salad bar at Maoz.
  • Huzzah! Brand new photocopiers in Butler.
  • There’s new rose-flavored tea and coffee at Tea Magic.
  • John Jay is charging for take-out boxes.
  • To McBain residents’ delight, McBain has a different brand of soap.
  • Oren’s is now 10 cents more expensive, but on a happier note–cider is back!!
  • Hewitt now has “RedHot” hotsauce.
  • New cup holders at Blue Java read “Early bird gets the job.”
F@CU Makes It Rain

Wikimedia Commons has its limits, kay?

Today is a big day! F@CU has just released their 2010-2011 allocations for your governing boards. Let’s talk big numbers and little percentages, shall we?

Activities Board: $393,459 granted, 7.4% increase from last year, 4.4% cut from requested allocation, which was $411,568

Club Sports Governing Board: $206,200 granted, 17% increase from last year’s allocation, $213,800 originally requested

Community Impact: $84,765, 23.6% increase from last year’s allocation, $86,440 requested

Inter-Greek Council: $9,680.56 granted, 47% decrease from last year’s allocation, 63% decrease from original request, which was $26,164. This bummer-rama is partly due to Barnard’s relative lack of involvement in Greek life the fact that Barnard students do not pay student life fees to the IGC. Part of F@CU’s reasoning:

Following much deliberation, the committee has decided to allocate a total of $9,680.56 to the Inter-Greek Council for the 2010-2011 academic school year. This represents a 47.0% decrease from the previous year’s allocation and a 63.2% decrease from the original allocation request. The decrease above is very significant and the committee would like to stress that this is not a reflection on the performance of the IGC. The cut is mostly due to the cut in funding from CCSC, ESC, and GSSC proportional to the percentage of Barnard students in the IGC. Given that Barnard students are not paying student life fees toward the IGC (as Barnard has not recognized the IGC and does not participate in its funding), CCSC, ESC and GSSC have decided only to fund their own constituencies and thus reduce IGC’s allocation to reflect that decision. Please refer to SGA’s supplemental letter for more details on their intended $1000 gift to IGC which is not part of F@CU.

Student Governing Board: $208,156 granted, 18% increase from last year’s allocation, $292,014 requested

Take a look at last year’s numbers here (all governing boards got a baseline 15.08% cut for 09-10) and check F@CU’s site for published letters to each governing board explaining the allocations. May you be spared from math until first semester rains Calc II down on you!

You Can’t Always Get What You Want

Bwog’s Official Consolation Prizes Correspondent Juli Weiner reports from the Barnard Mail Center. Apparently, a suitable solution to the lack of ATMs on campus are these ATM decals printed to walls. The posters even display how to swipe–with two arrows– an imaginary credit card.

Bwoglines: Mo Money, Mo Problems

Even though it looks like the MTA may lose $113 million in state funds, fare increases seem to be the least likely option. (NYT)

What better way for the city to spend $14 million than to have custodians open and close schoolyard gates? (NYP)

Although a new private elementary school founded by “high-powered mothers” (including a professor of psychiatry at Columbia) costs $28,500 a year to attend, it could be the best option for some students who can’t get a spot in NYC’s coveted gifted programs. (NYT)

Ever wanted to watch a Yankees playoff game in Yankee Stadium for free? Well now you can! It’s just a shame the actual players will be a few time zones away. (1010WINS)

President Obama is likely to be in Manhattan tomorrow! Sadly, no, not to visit his Alma Mater, but to thank the FBI and NYPD for dismantling an alleged terror plot. (NY1)

Image via Flickr