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All recognized student organizations at Columbia Business School have the option of having a financial account with the University. The account enables the organization to use University facilities, access the voucher system, and purchase goods and services. Accounts can be invoiced directly and certain items can be purchased using the University purchasing card.
Due to COVID-19, normal policies and procedures will be impacted. Any changes will be communicated with club leadership.
- Club and cluster budgets will only be able to use funds on events or items that fall within health official/CBS guidelines.
- Spring 2021 club membership dues will be free.
- OSA supports charging nominal fees for particular events that may need budget offset.
- Food and drinks are not allowable expenses for on-campus events for the spring 2021 semester.
- Domestic and international travel are not allowable expenses for student groups. For spring 2021, local travel such as day-trips are not an allowed expense.
- Off-campus events may have food and drinks as per spending regulations below.
Financial Planning Office (FPO)
General Cluster Finance
- Each cluster receives a budget of $6,000 at the beginning of the first semester provided by the Office of Student Affairs.
- This budget is intended to be used over the cluster’s two year MBA experience.
- Funds are given to enhance cluster community bonding and to fund events that encourage inclusive cluster cohesion.
- Click here to review budget utlizliation processes and what cluster funds are authorized to be used for.
- Cluster budgets that are overdrawn at the end of the second year may risk sanctions at the discretion of the Office of Student Affairs.
General Club Finance
- Clubs raise funds primarily through membership dues. For the Fall 2020-Spring 2021 semesters, membership will be free. Clubs are encouraged to charge nominal fees for selected events. Please contact your OSA Advisor for questions.
- Club budgets that are overdrawn at the end of academic year may risk sanctions at the discretion of the Office of Student Affairs. It is the responsibility of the club to return the budget to positive status.
- Click here to review budget utlizliation processes and what club funds are authorized to be used for.
- Click here to review budget utlizliation processes and what funds are authorized to be used for.
- Click here to review approved vendor options.
- Spending guidelines are set by Columbia University and are intended to keep the University in compliance with 501c3 Tax Exempt Status.
- Click here to review food and beverage per person maximums and spending levels.
- Click here to review the CBS alcohol policy. Note that hard alcohol (anything other than beer & wine) is restricted.
- Tip Policy: For purchases where tip is applicable, tip may not be more than 20% pre-tax total.
Ways To Pay
- Click here to review paying by Contract procedures [preferred method of payment].
- Click here to review paying by Student Reimbursement procedures.
- Click here to review paying by voucher procedures [preferred method of payment].
- Purchases may also be made in advance with the FPO Purchasing Card. Please e-mail Jamie Bonadonna-Van Beverhoudt for available options.
- Click here to review approved vendor options.
Accessing Your Budget Reports
- FPO is now providing monthly updates to club budget reports via FPO Service Now.
- Budget reports can be accessed by the end of the month by:
- Clicking on “Knowledge Base” on the left hand menu
- Searching by your full club name
- Budget reports are password protected- please ensure you have received your password from FPO.
- Please reach out to Jamie Bonadonna-Van Beverhoudt for questions.
Additional Funding Opportunities
Note on Tax Exempt Status
Tax Exempt status cannot be used on personal purchases. Tax exempt forms are issued with contracts and purchase orders and not for student TBERs.
Note on Student Loan Company Sponsorship
University policy governs all fundraising activities for cash, goods or services done by departments and student groups targeting off-campus entities including local businesses, corporations, foundations or individuals. Off-campus fundraising activities by any Columbia entity including student organizations is restricted and may require prior university approval from the External Relations and Development’s Corporate Relations area, with preliminary approval from the Office of Student Affairs. In particular, fundraising from student loan and refinance lenders is prohibited to avoid any quid pro quo assertions. The University has such policies in order to coordinate fundraising efforts, to ensure good stewardship and avoid any conflicts of interest.
This policy affects the following loan companies:
- CommonBond –SoFi (or Social Finance)
- Prodigy Finance
- MPower Financing
- ReliaMax SouthEast Bank
- Sallie Mae
- Discover Student Loans
- Citizens Bank
- PNC Bank
- Wells Fargo Education Financial Services
- Sun Trust Bank
- First Republic
- College Ave