The Yale Club of New York City is outlining plans to begin funding undergraduate organizations — particularly those representing cultural and racial minorities on campus — through the Undergraduate Organizations Committee.
Jennifer Warpool, director of marketing and communications at the Yale Club of NYC, said the club is excited about the initiative, though most of its details have yet to be determined. The project was announced to the UOC by Associate Dean for Student Organizations and Physical Resources John Meeske on Sept. 18, said UOC chair Aly Moore ’14, adding that having additional funds from the Yale Club of NYC will give the UOC more leeway in its budget for all undergraduate organizations.
Moore said she expects student groups will apply for Yale Club of NYC funds through an online process, and receive money if their events meet the club’s criteria. She said Meeske mentioned that the Yale Club of NYC initiative would focus on organizations representing minority groups, but added that the additional funding would ultimately benefit all student groups by helping the UOC expand its activities and pool of funds.
“Regardless of what group they will reach out to, they are still providing funding and that means we will have more money in our budget,” Moore said, adding that she is excited about the effort.
Warpool declined to offer specifics on the Yale Club of NYC’s plans, as she said the organization does not know most of the details. She said a budget has been approved for the project.
Meeske declined to comment because the Yale Club of New York did not yet want to release any information.
Melina Sanchez Montanes ’15, the political and cultural chair of the Latin American Students Organization, said she was happy to hear about the funding initiative. Montanes, who said LASO’s activities are partially funded by the UOC, explained that the Latin American Week the group held last year could have used more funding to bring in speakers and arrange special events. She added that receiving money from the Yale Club of NYC might encourage LASO members to join the club in the future.
“If we knew about the funding by the Yale Club of [NYC], or had events sponsored by them, we’d be more likely to join them as members,” she said.
The New York club is a part of a network of 120 domestic and 40 international Yale clubs spread across the world. Ken Yamaguchi ’92, president of the San Francisco club, said his branch is not involved in any similar funding initiative, as it does not have as large a budget as the club in New York. He said the San Francisco club does not “really have the diversity problem that maybe the Yale Club of New York wants to address,” and that he thinks “Yale clubs evolve with the population of alumni.”
Yamaguchi said he would not rule out the San Francisco branch becoming involved with the initiative, though it has never been discussed, as all the clubs “learn from each other.” Moore also said she believes the New York City club initiative could attract involvement from other chapters.
The Yale Club of NYC is located at 50 Vanderbilt Ave. in Manhattan.