GSSF Application

Schedule an Eligibility Review Meeting

The SSFC has included in their Standing Rules that all GSSF organizations meet with the ASM Funding Advisor to discuss their eligibility, programming, and presentation materials to ensure they meet policy expectations.

This gives an opportunity for applicants to ask questions and get an understanding of the overall process of being a part of the General Student Services Fund.

Per the SSFC Calendar, these must be completed by Monday, September 20, 2021 to allow one week for any edits to be made by the applicants before submitting their final applications by the required due date.

To schedule an Eligibility Review Meeting, email the ASM Funding Advisor. You must have your application materials in progress for this meeting.

Schedule a Budget Review Meeting

The SSFC has included in their Standing Rules that all GSSF organizations meet with the Assistant Director of Financial Services to discuss their budget excel and narrative to ensure all funding requests meet policy expectations.

This gives an opportunity for applicants to ask questions and get an understanding of the overall process of being a part of the General Student Services Fund.

Per the SSFC Calendar, these must be completed by Monday, September 20, 2021 to allow one week for any edits to be made by the applicants before submitting their final applications by the required due date.

To schedule a Budget Review Meeting, email the ASM Assistant Director of Financial Services. You must have your budget excel fully complete for this meeting.

Main Page 1

Budget Title
Image: Budget Proposal Title Page: “Enter Name Here”

‘Main Page 1’ is the first tab of the Budget Excel and all you’ll need to physically enter on this page is your Organization’s Name.

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

How To Make Sure You Have The Correct Excel:

Each year, the Budget Excel is updated to reflect proper updates from the previous SSFC and to reflect the correct fiscal year and dates.

You’ll want to make sure you start with Main Page 1 and that the Fiscal Years reflect the proper dates to make sure you’re using the most recent excel. If you have to edit this yourself, you don’t have the most up to date excel.

You can find the most up to date excel in the Application Materials portion of this page.

How Does The Group Name Field Work?

When you enter your organization’s name in the Group Name field, it will auto-populate throughout the excel so that whatever page the SSFC or ASM Staff are on, we know what organization we’re looking at.

This also creates less tedious work for you so you don’t have to enter it a bunch of different times throughout the excel!

Please make sure your organization’s name is what is reflected in WIN (Wisconsin Involvement Network) when you register with the Center for Leadership and Involvement.

Are There Instructions In The Excel?

On Main Page 1, there are partial instructions to help you through the excel.

The biggest instructions would be definitions so you can see what exactly is expected while you’re working your way through the excel. It also tells you what cells you should be editing and which ones you should not.

The most comprehensive and detailed instructions can be found here, however.

‘All Revenue Summary 2’ is a page where you can detail any revenue or funding you receive as an organization. This is especially important if you receive any additional funding outside of ASM/the GSSF.

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Do I Need To Enter Anything on the SSFC Line?

No! The great thing about this excel is that we have it set up to auto-populate as you fill out your request. So when you’re requesting funds from the SSFC, that revenue is already included on this revenue summary.

Will I Be Able To Ask For Revenue Outside of GSSF Funding?

There are some things that are not allowed when you have GSSF funding. For one, it’s highly  unlikely that you would also get an event/travel grant through ASM if you have GSSF funding. This is because you already having funding to cover this from ASM.

Also, when you’re a GSSF funded organization, you cannot charge students a membership fee to be a part of your organization. This is because you’re now funded by the Student Segregated Fee which all students pay. This means all students should have access to your organization.

Lastly, when it comes to fundraising, you are not allowed to fundraise with GSSF dollars.

Usually, the All Revenue Summary allows us to see what you’ve done in the past with those lines if the year is relevant and you had funding in those specific lines.

What If I Receive No Additional Revenue Outside of the GSSF?

Great news! Your work got a whole lot simpler on this page.

Since the SSFC line will auto-populate and that is the only revenue you receive, you simply don’t fill out anything else on this tab!

All Revenue Summary 2

all revenue summary
Image: All Revenue Summary screenshot

GSSF Budget Summary 3

GSSF Budget Summary 3
Image: GSSF Budget Summary screenshot

‘GSSF Budget Summary 3’ is a comprehensive summary of all of the funding you’re asking for from the SSFC and the General Student Services Fund.

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Are There Any Cells I Need To Edit On This Page Or Do They All Auto-Populate?

The following lines will need direct editing from you if you plan to ask (or have asked in the previous fiscal years indicated in the excel) for any funding:

  • Equipment (different from rental)
  • Supplies/Furniture
  • Printing/Photocopying
  • Advertising
  • Computer Soft/Hardware
  • Equipment Rental
  • Membership Fees
  • Postage
  • Rent (space/office)

These are all rows that are indicated in blue on the excel.

If you don’t input any funding, the assumption is that you’re not asking for any funding for these line items.

Other areas of the budget summary will auto-populate to include salaries and programming totals.

If you have questions about what any of these line items are, please ask the Assistant Director of Financial Services.

How Do I Know What My Past Actual and Approved Budgets Were?

Approved:

Approved budgets can be found on the ASM Website: https://asm.wisc.edu/general-student-services-fund/ at the very bottom of the page. You can see what the SSFC approved your budgets for. You can also contact the ASM Funding Advisor who can send you your approved budgets for any fiscal year.

Actual:

Actual spending is reflected in your reconciled budgets sent out by the SSFC Financial Specialist each month for the previous month. At the end of the year, a final reconciliation will be sent that you can use to base your actual spending on.

New organizations submitting a first time request or organizations who have not had funding for two fiscal years will not have anything to report in these columns. 

How Do I Know What My Fringe Calculation Is?

The easiest way to calculate fringe is to do this with the Assistant Director of Financial Services during your Budget Review Meeting.

This will ensure your calculations are correct and you’ve allowed for enough fringe for your staff.

‘Salary Summary 4’ explains any paid salaries for students or full time non-student staff you’re asking for.

Any organization looking into a Full Time Non-Student Staff Position should review the requirements set by ASM Constitution and Bylaws: 2.032(9) – FTE Requests.

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What If There Aren't Enough Staff Slots On The Excel For How Many Staff We're Asking For?

To add more staff positions, simply right click on the row number and select Insert.

row example
Image: example of a salary row to right click

For example, for Position 5 in Row 15, you’d right click on the number 15 and then select Insert.

This will insert a row above the row you just right clicked on.

You can do this as many times as necessary.

To copy the formatting down to the row, you will want to click on the cell with the formatting you want. When it’s highlighted green, take your mouse and put it in the bottom right corner of the cell where a little green square should be. Your mouse should change to an all-black cross. You can click and drag that down the cell below and it will copy the formula used into that cell.

formatting for excel
Image: a selected cell with an empty cell below

For example: You can see above that Position 4 now has a row below it and one cell is selected and there is a little green dot in the bottom right corner. If you click and drag that to the cell below, it will copy that formula to the new row below. You can do this for any cell in that new row with the formula above it and the formula will copy!

Summer Positions Did Not Used To Be Separated, Why The Change?

This allows us to more clearly see that you’re asking for summer positions.

We have also had organizations who weren’t aware that summer positions could be asked for at all. this allows them to be more clearly visible as an option if the SSFC deems them necessary for the organization to operate.

Why Are There Three Salary Sections On This Page?

The top section is for the past salaries from the most recent fiscal year where you can indicate the salaries you were approved for and what your actual spending was (refer to approved budgets and reconciled budgets for these numbers).

The middle section is for the current fiscal year you’d be in the middle of at the time of the budget request. There wouldn’t be any actuals because you’re in the middle of spending those approved salaries.

The bottom section is for what you’re requesting from the SSFC for this budget application. This is where you’ll reflect any new requests or changes to your past salary proposals. If everything stays the same, you’ll simply copy it down into that section so we’re aware that is what you’re requesting.

New organizations won’t have past or current salaries to report so they will scroll down to the bottom and simply fill out the request section.

How Do I Indicate Our FTE Staff Salary?

Because this is an option so rarely used by GSSF, we removed it from the excel and it will be manually entered by any organizations that use this.

To do this, simply choose whatever line you want that FTE salary to be reflected in and delete the formulas in all of the cells for that row. All you’ll need to fill in for that salary is the full salary request under the approved/actual/request column.

As a reminder, the FTE salaries are set in consultation with University Human Resources and are considered non-allocable and thus not editable by the SSFC.

Salary Summary 4

salary summary 4
Image: Salary Summary 4 Screenshot

Program Costs 5

program costs
Image: program costs 5 screenshot

‘Program Costs 5’ is a lengthy excel sheet for you to detail all of your core and supportive programming that will cost any funding from the GSSF.

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What Is This New Program Table Of Contents Off To The Side?

Some organizations have a lot of programs altogether and this excel sheet specifically can get lengthy and tedious!

As each program block is filled out, the name of the program will auto-fill into this table of contents. When an organization wants to jump to a specific program, they simply click on that program and it will jump them down to that section.

This will hopefully reduce some tedious scrolling and help with overall organization of your programming.

What If I Don't Know All Of The Details Of The Program (Duration, Time, Etc.)?

It’s understandable that you wouldn’t know every detail of a program an entire year out.

What we’re looking for here is that it will be a couple hours long versus an entire week or weekend etc. Think more big picture with this information.

We also understand that what you put in your budget excel isn’t necessarily set in stone but acts as a guide for what your plan for that program is.

The same goes for the venue or it being on/off campus. Usually, an organization knows that it will be on or off campus but may not know the exact room number or location of an event. That’s understandable. Again, we’re thinking big picture (for example, you might put Unions for the venue if you plan for it to be in the Union).

Try and give as much information as possible so we know that you’re thoughtfully planning these programs and events.

Putting things like “varies” isn’t helpful. Instead put “various classrooms or Union spaces” so we’re aware.

TBD is a common input that we see. Instead of “TBD” you could put “currently set for ((location)) but subject to change” or “historically at ((location)) but subject to change” just so we know you have some plans or ideas in place. This allows for more detail and a fuller picture of the event.

What Cells Do I Need To Edit For Each Program?

Depending on the program, you’ll want to edit any line identified in blue if you plan to ask for any funding.

This includes (per program):

As you input amounts for each of these, the totals will auto-populate both in each program, at the top of the page in a program summary, and on the GSSF Budget Summary 3 page.

What If I Have More Than 15 Programs?

Currently the excel is set up for 15 programming blocks as that covers the most programs requested in recent fiscal years.

That being said, you’re not limited to 15. If you have more, you can contact the ASM Funding Advisor and they can help you add more so you don’t mess up any formulas and it will correctly auto-populate into your summaries.

Preparing For A Hearing

At the conclusion of your excel and other materials, you’ll submit your application by the required due date above. You’ll then be contacted by the SSFC Chair and be given a hearing and decision date.

At each hearing, organizations are able to present for 40 minutes total (or 20 minutes on eligibility and 20 minutes on budget). Essentially this presentation walks through why you meet the requirements of the Eligibility Criteria and what your budget to the GSSF is asking for.

The SSFC will have an opportunity to also ask questions during a Question and Answer (Q&A) period.

At the decision meeting, the SSFC will first vote on eligibility for the organization based on the Eligibility Criteria being met. If an organization is determined to have met Eligibility requirements, the SSFC will then move on to approving or amending their submitted budget.

An organization will have 10 business days post-decision to appeal to the Student Judiciary.