Letter to the editor

USG member salaries could be put to better use. 

Funding is an uphill battle for many student organizations, but for Undergraduate Student Government, it is a given. As an organization that is run by students and for students, why is it that so much money — our money — is spent on the subsidization of its members and not on its efforts to promote, sponsor and give a voice to more student organizations?

USG consists of more than 100 executive members and is therefore an employer of more than 100 students. As we all know, campus jobs are hard to come by, especially if you do not qualify for work-study.

USG is one of the only organizations on campus whose members receive a hearty pay. Nowhere on the USG website is it mentioned that USG members get paid, but why not? Would advertising such a perk not attract more students? Isn’t that what any organization would want? Maybe it’s because they want to attract students who are doing it because they want to and not because they’ll be paid. So then the question is: Why pay at all? There is no shortage of USC students who want to get involved, whether it is to improve their résumé or impact their community.

Our campus is filled with organizations such as Helenes, the Interfraternity Council, Panhellenic Council and our beloved Trojan Knights. Their efforts not only greatly impact our community — for the most part, they are also better known than those of USG.

Yet the members of these organizations commit time for no pay and with little subsidization. In fact, many on-campus organizations, whose impact is felt by students, turn to USG to get funding for events via the Discretionary Funding Board.

The board is no doubt a great resource for many on-campus organizations whose efforts are focused on furthering the community and the well-being of the student body (i.e. addressing the core of USG’s mission statement). This money, however, is a hot commodity and the leadership fund runs out fast.

If more money were spent on furthering on-campus student organizations through USG funding and less on the members of USG for their time, USG would already be achieving what it aims to do.

Why do we pay students to enhance the student body when most of the students who reading this already impact the campus but go unpaid and in need of funding?

Madeleine Lay

Junior, political science