With the markets melting down and my college fund running on empty, every little bit helps.
I've spoken with at least a dozen friends who say much the same thing, including one who told me rather tragically that he wouldn't have studied finance and gone into all this debt if he had known that there wasn't going to be a job for him at the end of it.
As The Forum reported some time ago, Claremont McKenna's endowment lost 14% this last quarter and President Gann is taking necessary steps to reduce the spending. ASCMC should consider following in Gann's footsteps by reducing their mandatory fees. When so many are facing diminishing job prospects, that $300+ a semester might come in handy.
Though $300+ may not seem like that much, it would certainly be a welcome gesture. Families that can pay more could donate to A.S.C.M.C. and receive a generous tax deduction. According to Guidestar.org, donations are tax deductible.
The Campus Organizations Chair and others have made the argument that A.S.C.M.C. is both a non-profit and yet that we are also "stakeholders" in A.S.C.M.C. This language confuses two distinct concepts that of the non-profit and the corporation. This distinction is key because it reveals two distinct possibilities for those most hurt by the financial crisis.
Either ASCMC is a part of CMC or it isn't. If it is part of Claremont McKenna, just like all the other clubs are part of Claremont McKenna and therefore cannot deny students access, then Ross Boomer's censorship of my comment several days ago constitutes a violation of the Leonard Law in that it denies me the right to fully participate in college activities.
On the financial side, if A.S.C.M.C. is a part of Claremont McKenna, then the $300+ per semester become a part of the federal college tax break, which equals roughly $4000 per year.
If it isn't, we should be able to attend Claremont McKenna and not have to pay for A.S.C.M.C. If A.S.C.M.C. is a seperate non-profit, which their charter says they are, then any donations to A.S.C.M.C. become tax-deductible pending a receipt from none other than Erik Hansell, CMC '09, it's president.
If A.S.C.M.C. is run by "stakeholders" then I retain the right under corporate law to sue when my money isn't being put to the ends I would like. I also retain the right to move my money. The argument that I "chose to come to C.M.C. and therefore don't have a say in paying for A.S.C.M.C" assumes that C.M.C. and A.S.C.M.C. are de facto the same. They aren't. If they were, why do they file different tax returns?
A.S.C.M.C. probably doesn't want to go down this road as becoming a corporation would mean that it is taxed. Given that A.S.C.M.C. effectively gives several of its management members stipends, I wonder if they report that on their income tax returns.