Letchworth reopening brings reductions to CAS grants

With the completion of Letchworth Dining Hall comes a decrease in available funding for Campus Auxiliary Service grants for student organizations. Approximately one-third fewer organizations will receive funding this school year. The completion of Letchworth took $14,000 out of the CAS budget, which is why they now only fund 100 organizations as opposed to the 160 funded last year. CAS grants are used by student organizations to provide food and catering services for events that benefit the campus community.

Administrative Assistant at CAS Impressions Catering Catherine Cieri said that the decrease in CAS grant funds is simply a return to previous standards.

“Because we weren’t paying for rent on Letchworth during its construction, CAS had saved that money to be used for organization grants,” she said. “Now that construction is complete, available funds are back to what they have been for years.”

CAS grants have become increasingly popular among organizations on campus. In order for an organization to serve food at an event held on campus it must go through CAS, and as Cieri herself admitted, the best way to get people to come to events is with free food.

With CAS being the only option for these organizations, the decrease in funding to the CAS grant program will make this year more competitive for grant applicants. Despite CAS Executive Director Mark Scott’s promise last year to change the application process for CAS grants in order to prioritize events that “do some sort of legitimate work out in the community,” CAS plans on continuing to award grants on a first-come-first-serve basis.

“A lot of people already applied at the very beginning of the semester,” Cieri said. “I recommend that organizations apply for grants as soon as their event date is set. Even if their event is in the spring, they can still apply now.”

Application forms are not currently available online, but Cieri says that she plans on putting the form on the CAS Impressions Catering website in the next few days. For the time being, students may either email her at cieri@geneseo.edu with their event details or come to the CAS catering offices in Blake Hall B to speak to her directly.

Applications for CAS grants require applicants to describe details about the event such as how the event benefits its organization and the college community and how CAS can enhance their event. Organizations must be recognized by the school and applications must be received at least 10 business days before the event’s scheduled date.

The only new requirement according to Cieri is that if the event was a charity fundraiser, the organization must now report back to CAS the amount of money it raised. This information will be used to help CAS plan for future events.

“A lot of organizations do philanthropic events,” she said. “This shows that Geneseo’s clubs are thinking about the community and CAS is here to help with that.”