UW sophomore Klinsmann Gutierrez speaks on behalf of MCSC at the group\’s SSFC eligibility hearing.[/media-credit]

In a packed and sometimes contentious meeting, the Student Services Finance Committee approved funding for Adventure Learning Program and Vets for Vets, while denying funding for WisChoices and the Student Tenant Resource Center.

The funding of the Student Tenant Resource Center — a decision postponed from the last meeting — was heavily debated between representatives of SSFC. At the center of the debate was STRC’s similarity to the Student Tenant Union.

According to SSFC Chair Brandon Williams, the biggest concern regarding the organization’s eligibility was “whether the group was just changing its name; whether or not it was still accountable for STU.” Rep. Kyle Szarzynski, who was officially representing STRC at the meeting, admitted the two groups served the same functions, but simply had different names.

STRC was denied eligibility 2-3-3 on the grounds that the organization had to be held accountable for the shortcomings of the STU, which had the same aim and leadership as STRC. STU’s funds were frozen earlier in the year for failing to turn in an end-of-the-year report.

Vets for Vets received funding after the decision was postponed from Thursday with a vote of 5-2-1 after being denied last year.

WisChoices, a program that offers alcohol counseling from trained students and provides educational services to students about alcohol, was thoroughly debated, with representatives questioning its similarity to other services offered by UHS and the university. SSFC found WisChoices was not differentiated enough in its program’s aims in comparison to those already offered and funding for the organization was denied 2-5-1. WisChoices was not previously funded by the SSFC, but instead by a NCAA grant.

“We are disappointed because we think that we do have something different and beneficial to offer. We create our own programs and do our own things,” WisChoices member Stacy Lorenz said.

Adventure Learning Pro-gram was granted funds in a 7-0-1 vote. UW senior and ALPs Co-Coordinator Jessica Erdman was happy with the vote. ALPs had also received funding for the current fiscal year for an amount of $133,199.80 and $125,261.11 for 2008-09.

“I’m just really excited that we are able to continue to provide our experiential education-based workshops to university students,” Erdman said.

Eligibility hearings for UWislit and MultiCultural Student Coalition were also held Monday. UWislit, a program that offers ESL training and tutoring ser-vices, requested an amount of $3,000, which does not meet the $4,700 minimum that is required according to eligibility standards. UWislit has not been funded previously by the SSFC but instead by a grant given by the Faculty Honors Committee last year.

MCSC received $273,363.04 from SSFC for 2009-10.

SSFC then moved to a closed meeting to discuss “personnel issues” following the hearings and eligibility decisions.

The decisions regarding the eligibility of both MCSC and UWislit are scheduled to be made by SSFC at its Thursday meeting.