SIF Policies (updated August 2010)
Download PDF of SIF Policies.
The Student Initiatives Fund (SIF) is a grant-funding, standing committee that reports to the Student Services Advisory Committee. SIF is administered by the Office of Student Community Life on behalf of the Vice Provost Students, Ryerson University.
Each group (faculty/office/union/school) represented will hold one vote which means the two student representatives from each faculty will share one vote. When both student representatives from a faculty are present they will share one vote and when only one representative is present they will hold the entire vote.
Committee membership will consist of 19 members represented as follows:
- Two student representatives: Faculty of Arts
- Two student representatives: Faculty of Community Services
- Two student representatives: Faculty of Communication and Design
- Two student representatives: Faculty of Engineering and Architectural Science
- Two student representatives: Faculty of Science
- Two student representatives: Ted Rogers School of Management
- Two student representatives: School of Graduate Studies
- Two student representative: Office of the Vice Provost Students (OVPS)
- One student representative: Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU)
- One student representative: Continuing Education Students’ Association at Ryerson (CESAR)
- SIF Administrative Assistant (non-voting)
- Vice-chairperson & SIF Administrator: Campus Activities & Events Facilitator (non-voting)
- Chairperson: Director, Student Community Life (non-voting)
The SIF Administrative Assistant is a non-voting, student staff member who coordinates meetings and assists the Vice-chair. The Administrative Assistant is the recording secretary.
The SIF Chair and Vice-chair are non-voting full-time staff in the Office of Student Community Life.
SIF members will be selected by a five person committee consisting of one appointed RSU representative, one appointed CESAR representative, one outgoing SIF member from a faculty, the Campus Activities & Events Facilitator and Director of Student Community Life (Committee Chairperson; Not involved in selecting members). A SIF selection committee procedure document will provide details of the process the committee will follow.
OVPS representatives are appointed through a selection process.
RSU and CESAR representatives are selected by their respective organizations.
Members hold one-year terms that coincide with the academic year.
SIF convenes in the fall and winter semesters. A meeting will be held at the end of the winter semester to hear applications for the spring/summer semester. Quorum is defined as four (4) voting members that represent at least four (4) groups (faculty/office/union/school) who are present at the meeting. Guidelines on the structure of committee meetings, as well as the responsibilities of voting and non-voting members, can be found in: SIF Meeting Guidelines.
SIF awards funding for the following initiatives:
i) Undergraduate and graduate student-led projects that will not earn academic credit.
These projects may take place in Canada or internationally, and must contribute to a student’s cultural/academic/social or leadership development. Projects must demonstrate that they:
- Enhance student life beyond academic requirements
- Support/promote the image of the student group and Ryerson University
- Assist in developing a sense of community at Ryerson University
ii) Undergraduate and graduate student lounge upgrades
All initiatives must be tied to the Academic Mission of Ryerson University.
All initiatives must adhere to Ryerson policies including, but not limited to, policies on intellectual rights and plagiarism, the Student Codes of Academic and Non-Academic Conduct, the Guide to Civility, and Ryerson’s Discrimination and Harassment Prevention Policy. Initiatives are also bound by all applicable local, provincial, national and international laws, rules, and regulations such as, but not limited to, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
SIF monies are drawn from the Special Activities Reserve that is funded by undergraduate and graduate student ancillary fees. Funding is administered through policies established by the Student Services Advisory Committee.
4a. Student Projects:
Student Initiatives Fund may choose to provide funding assistance to a variety of student projects that meet the requirements outlined in Section 3. Funding for student projects (i.e. excluding student lounges) will be limited to a maximum of $5,000 for new projects (in place for 3 years or less), and $2500 for established projects (in place for 4 years or more) depending on the merit of the proposal and its benefit to the Ryerson community. Requests for additional funding (up to $4,000 for new projects, and $2000 for established projects) are rarely granted and must satisfy a secondary application process.
4b. Student Lounge Upgrades:
SIF may choose to provide funding assistance for student lounge renovations and other, related upgrades such as requests for new appliances (e.g. microwaves). Renovations will be performed by Ryerson’s Campus Planning Facilities or its contractors.
Applications must be submitted by the due date to be considered.
Applications for student lounge upgrades must be endorsed by the respective program Chair or Dean.
One meeting will be held in both the fall and winter (pending funding availability) semesters to hear all applications for student lounge upgrades.
4c. General Policies:
Students must demonstrate that they have attempted to secure income from alternate sources. These sources may include, but are not limited to, faculty donations or fundraising initiatives such as bake sales. Applications that do not demonstrate they have attempted to secure alternate income will not be considered. Methods to meaningfully demonstrate that alternate funding methods have been attempted, include, but are not limited to: sponsorship packages, revenues from past fundraising initiatives (for the proposed project) and copies of marketing/promotional material or room-booking requests for future fundraising initiatives that will take place for the project(s).
Students and/or student groups can apply for SIF funding once per semester. An application can contain requests for multiple projects. Projects that have received funding in previous years are not guaranteed funds in subsequent years.
4c.i. Funding Limitations:
SIF will not award funding for the following items:
- Alcoholic beverages
- Student group/project deficits from previous fiscal years
- Prize money or gift cards
- Charitable donations
- Contingency funds or ancillary expenses
- End-of-year graduation events
Students who use SIF funds for any of the above items will be disciplined. Disciplinary actions may include, but are not limited to, grades being withheld until the misused funds have been reimbursed to SIF.
SIF will not award funding for the following projects:
- Projects/initiatives that do not have a project supervisor (Ryerson faculty or full-time staff)
- Projects that do not demonstrate that they have meaningfully sought alternate income
- Projects/initiatives that will earn academic credit
- Projects/initiatives that are unable to demonstrate how they will contribute to the Ryerson community
- Design and Build competitions such as Engineering Bridge Building Contests* and Engineering Vehicles that include, but are not limited to, the following competitions*:
Formula SAE, Ryerson SuperMileage, Great Moon Buggy Race Team, Mini Baja and Concrete Canoe
- These projects are funded by the Dean of Engineering, Architecture and Science.
Applicants must first attempt to enlist the services of Ryerson students for services such as photography and videography that have related, professional courses at Ryerson University.
SIF funds must be accessed within the current academic year. Funds cannot be transferred from one year to subsequent years. All unused funds will be returned to SIF at the end of the academic year (August 31).
SIF decisions are final. There are no appeals.
4c.ii. SIF Account Deficits:
Persons named on the SIF application form (Primary and Secondary student contacts, and the staff Project Supervisor) are responsible for any deficits incurred by their projects in their SIF accounts. Disciplinary action will be taken against the persons named on the application if their SIF account(s) is in deficit. Disciplinary measures include, but are not limited to, the student contacts (and/or the student groups they represent) being ineligible for future funding until the deficit has been cleared.
5.a. Student Event Management Assessment
All SIF projects must complete Student Event Risk Assessment as part of their application process. The Student Event Risk Assessment form can be accessed through the SIF Application Portal.
5.b. Liability and Transportation Vehicles
All activities funded by SIF must be undertaken in a way that ensures the safety of all participants. Any vehicle rented as part of the funding request must be procured from a reputable agency and the vehicle’s usage must conform to the terms of that rental agreement.
Funding will be considered for travel expenses. However, arrangements for travel must be approved by the Student Event Risk Management process.
All approved projects must acknowledge SIF in marketing and communications materials. The SIF Vice-chair can be contacted for a high-resolution copy of the SIF logo.
All approved initiatives must submit a final report within two weeks of the project completion date. Final report guidelines can be found at: Submit Your Final Report/Budget. Failure to submit a final report will result in disciplinary measures that include, but are not limited to, the ineligibility of a student’s/student group’s future funding requests to SIF.
A financial report of all SIF activities will be submitted to SSAC for review at the conclusion of both the fall and winter semesters. SSAC can also request a financial report for review with at least two weeks notice.
Revised: July 2010
SSAC Approved: August 6, 2010