CC plans student project competition

For the second year in a row, College Council (CC) has discovered an unallocated sum of money that the members have decided should be used by the student body. CC plans to send out an all-campus e-mail late this week or early next week announcing a competition in which students will present ideas for projects that would benefit from CC funding and support.

Unlike last year, CC does not plan to announce the amount of money in the fund. When asked, CC co-Presidents Lizzy Brickley ’10 and Mike Tcheyan ’10 said they were not prepared to release the amount of money in the projects fund, saying that the costs of the implemented projects could in part dictate how much money will be spent. The co-presidents confirmed that the sum is “a fair amount of money.”
Brickley and Tcheyan explained that the money was totaled when CC Treasurer Rachel Hudson ’10 closed out the accounts of defunct student clubs in the same way the CC did last year. According to Ifiok Inyang ’11, CC minority concerns representative, last year was the first time that student money had been re-collected in this way.

The co-presidents said that they thought the process used by CC last year to solicit student ideas worked well, so they plan to use the same design. Following the e-mail, students will have a few weeks to put together proposals to submit to CC. “We want well-thought-out ideas,” Tcheyan said. “We want people to send us plans with an idea of cost, feasibility, and how the plan will be carried out.”
Once CC has collected ideas, the members will narrow down projects based on their knowledge of historical attempts at projects and the potential of the projects to be successful, Brickley explained. Once CC has narrowed the projects down sufficiently, the authors of the projects will come to a CC meeting to present and discuss their ideas, which Brickley and Tcheyan hope will serve to help strengthen potential projects.

“We want the people who pitch these ideas to be involved in the follow-through,” Tcheyan said. “We want to do this in a way that gives empowerment to more students on campus,” Brickley added, referencing the fact that the task of carrying out last year’s project – the textbook reserve program – was taken on mostly by last year’s CC Co-Presidents, Jeremy Goldstein ’09 and Peter Nurnberg ’09. “We want this to help build leadership on campus outside of CC,” she said.

The final selection or prioritization of projects will be put to a student body vote in which students will either choose which projects will be implemented or will prioritize which should be implemented first. Brickley and Tcheyan explained that, depending on project costs, the money could in theory be used to fund more than one or two projects.

The co-presidents said they plan to have the entire selection process completed by winter break, so that Winter Study can be dedicated to putting the selected projects into action.