Funding Policies & FAQ

Funding Policies

  • Budget Requests

    ● At the end of each semester, fully-recognized clubs are to submit a semester budget request for the following semester, specifically detailing planned events along with required expected costs.

    ● Clubs should list events in the order of most to least important in the summary sheet of the budget request form.

    ● Clubs should include information such as event purpose, planned number of attendees, and an itemized line-item budget request.

    ● We also look favorably upon collaborative events, sponsored by multiple clubs.

    ● Clubs that miss the submission deadline will not be eligible for pre-allocated funding from the WC in the respective semester.

    ● Clubs entering the semester with corporate sponsorship funds greater than half of the total WC allocations for a given semester will not be eligible for a semester allocation.

  • Budget Usage

    ● Clubs that utilize less than 85% of WC allocated funds in the past semester will not receive WC funding in the subsequent semester.

    ● A club may only spend up to the total amount allocated for its semester budget.

    ● Clubs may spend their total allocation of funds as they see fit amongst their events, but must do so in accordance with the Wharton Council Funding Policies and the Wharton Undergraduate Division Office of Student Life Financial Policies. Please note that the Wharton Council Finance Committee still requires an estimation of costs for each event in the budget request application.

    ● In most cases, Wharton Council funds will be applied toward expenses first, before utilizing any corporate sponsorship funding.

  • Contingency Funding

    ● For non-budgeted items, ad-hoc events, or club banners, you can apply for WC Contingency Funds by submitting the contingency request form, which can be found hereContingency requests must be submitted at least 15 days before the event.

    ● Only after a club exhausts all of its WC funding prior to the end of the semester, can they submit a contingency request for an impending event that has been included in their initial semester budget.

    Note that this is the only funding option available for Wharton Undergraduate Clubs currently in their trial period.

    Limiting Principles of Contingency Funding

    Relevance to Club Goals: Contingency funding requests for social events should be directly related to the general theme, culture, or goals of the club. Social events are defined as events where members gather to socialize, network, or engage in activities related to the club's mission but that are not academic in nature. Examples of social events may include dinners, parties, or outings. The funding request must include a clear explanation of how the event relates to the club's mission and how it will benefit its members. The maximum funding limit for social events is $20 per person.

    Inclusivity & Accessibility of Events: Events that are exclusive to certain segments of the club, such as executive board or specific committee members, will not be funded. If a social event is to be funded, it must be accessible to all club members, and the funding request must include a detailed description of how the event will promote inclusivity and diversity.

    Event and Catering Funding: Contingency funding for events can only be used for food catering, and not for other expenses such as venue rental, decorations, or entertainment. Catering is defined as the purchase and delivery of food to an event, and must not include the purchase of alcohol or other non-food items. The maximum funding limit for catering per person is $18.

  • Membership Dues

    ● Clubs are not allowed to collect membership dues as a requirement to become a member of the club (including general body members, committee members, or board members).

    Clarification: Clubs are permitted to collect dues or fees for individual events, but these events must not be mandatory for a member to stay involved in the club

  • Accessing Funds

    ● If your expense can be processed by a P.O. vendor, you are strongly encouraged to use a P.O. Vendor and fill out a P.O. Form at least one week prior to the event.

    All P.O. system vendors/suppliers

    All approved apparel vendors/suppliers (use of other apparel vendors is prohibited)

    Approved caterers

    Please ensure that your P.O. receipt does not include taxes.

    ● If your expense cannot be processed by a P.O. vendor, you may use an outside network vendor via Concur. One club member must pay for the expense out-of-pocket and submit a reimbursement via Concur. If that individual is not set-up in Concur, the UME member will need to email the finance office at and ask to set-up on Concur (they will need to email the finance office with their full name and PennID#)

    Instructions for using Concur

  • Unused Funds

    A club that maintains a surplus of WC funds at the end of the semester will not be able to rollover this amount to the next semester or academic year. Accordingly, it is in the best interest of the club to use as much of their WC funding as possible during each semester.

    ● Please note that remaining corporate funding does roll over from semester to semester

  • Club Deficits

    If a club exceeds its budget, it will be placed on probationary status. No additional financial transactions will be permitted until the deficit is resolved and the club is at a $0 balance or higher. This can be achieved by collecting and depositing dues from club members. Corporate Sponsorships or WC contingency funding cannot be used to reduce the deficit.

    ● If the club is in a deficit for more than the agreed timeline agreed upon by the WC, Office of Student Life, and the Undergraduate Finance Office, the club will lose its recognition as a Wharton club.

    ● It is important for the club treasurer to communicate any budgetary concerns in a proactive manner to the Undergraduate Finance Office, to the Director of Student Life, and to the WC liaison.

  • Non-Reimbursable Items

    If the expense is over $500, you will need to email Lee Kramer ( the total amount that your club wants to spend, the vendor that you are using, and what you are purchasing

    The following are not reimbursable:

    Purchase of gift cards.

    Campus Copy—Please email your assigned staff member at least three business days in advance to request the Campus Copy account code; you will need to give Campus Copy the code as your form of payment. The student organization’s name should be included in the email request. You will need to email your assigned staff member each time you need to use the Campus Copy code. Once you pick-up your order from Campus Copy, please write your name and the club’s name on the receipt and drop it off to the front desk in the Wharton Undergrad Division Office within one business day. Please note that if you submit a reimbursement for Campus Copy via Concur, you will not be reimbursed for the tax.

    University Club—Please ask your assigned staff member for a local account form and the appropriate account number/card and for this vendor at least 3 business days in advance.

    Tax (Some tax is reimbursable, but Penn is tax-exempt in almost all cases. If a Concur reimbursement is done for a PO vendor, the tax will not be reimbursed.)


    Copying or office supplies—Use one of the above vendors or ask your assigned staff member for assistance at least 10 business days in advance.

    Gifts of any sort—Please contact your assigned staff member for alternative options at least 10 business days in advance.

    Honoraria for speakers or payments to independent contractors—Please see your assigned staff member at least 10 business days in advance, as these must be paid via check.

    Deposit holds for future events—Wharton never provides vendors with deposits.

  • Transportation Guidelines

    ● Planes: All plane reservations must be made using Penn’s travel vendor; no reimbursements will be issued. Please discuss with the director of student life.

    ● Amtrak: To purchase Amtrak tickets (non-Acela only), clubs must use corporate funding. However, with prior approval from the WC and the director of student life, WC funding may be used to purchase tickets for speakers.

    ● SEPTA: Maximum of two tokens per passenger per event.

    ● Peter Pan, Mega, etc.: Maximum funding of a two-way trip per passenger per event.

    ● Taxis: In certain situations, you may be reimbursed for taxi services; however, you will need permission in advance from the WC and/or director of student life.

    ● Transportation for guest speakers: If you need to purchase tickets of any kind for your guest speakers, please discuss this with the director of student life in advance

  • Corporate Sponsorship

    ● Please refer to our Corporate Sponsorship Guide, found under the "Club Leader Resources" tab

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What if the Wharton Council grants me more money than I actually spend? Does my club get to keep the money for next semester?

    No, you will only be able to use the exact amount that the WC Finance Committee grants your club for that particular semester. However, excess funds can roll over from one event to another event provided the event takes place in the same semester. Funding not spent during the semester will not be rolled over to your club’s next semester budget.

  • What are the responsibilities of the Club’s Treasurer?

    Treasurers are responsible for tracking all club expenditures and maintaining accurate and up to date financial records for the club at all times. All club expenditures must be vetted by the respective club treasurer before they occur. If an unknown, yet legitimate, club related expense is submitted by a third party (i.e. a fellow club member) without the treasurer’s knowledge, the club must still cover the cost even if it exacerbates a pre-existing deficit or creates a new one.

  • What are the payment options for Wharton student club events?

    For Wharton student club events only. There are two preferred ways to pay for club purchases: the University’s Purchase Order (PO) system and the Concur Expense Management System. See the above section "Accessing Funds" for more information.

  • What are the supplier options for Club merchandise?

    All student clubs must utulize the suppliers listed here as per Penn wide policies. All of them are on the PO system and should be familiar with the University and its brand standards.

  • I have a credit card receipt but not an itemized receipt for my reimbursement request. Is that OK?

    The University requires that all reimbursement requests have an itemized receipt and a proof of purchase receipt accompanying along with the proper reimbursement forms.

  • I paid tax on my purchase. Why was I not reimbursed for the tax?

    In most cases, students will not be reimbursed on tax. Please contact the Wharton undergraduate finance office with your concerns.

  • My club is having a conference with several prominent speakers and I would like to give them a thank you gift. Can I be reimbursed for a gift purchase?

    You may not purchase a gift for your speakers. However, contact Lee Kramer, Director of Student Life, to find out about Wharton-branded speaker gifts that can be purchased through the Wharton Undergraduate Office.

  • Will the Wharton Council provide funding for events that aren’t held in Huntsman Hall?

    Absolutely. However, we will not sponsor events that are held in private residences (dorm rooms, houses, off-campus, etc.).

  • What is the university tipping policy for delivery services (i.e., food vendors)?

    The university’s tipping policy is that you tip no more than 10% of the food/drink subtotal. Please note some vendors charge a delivery fee on top of the food/drink total; do not tip on this subtotal, only the food/drink subtotal.

  • What are other sources of funding on Penn’s campus for my club?

    ● SAC – The Student Activities Council funds clubs and their events throughout Penn. Many Wharton Clubs have begun to take advantage of SAC funding. To find out more about becoming a SAC recognized club, please visit their website at Once you are a SAC recognized club, you are eligible to receive their funding.

    ● Tangible Change – their mission is to provide a forum for student leaders to plan and fund non-alcoholic events which seek to bring together large and disparate audiences. They look favorably upon collaborative, cross-cultural and cross-discipline events. For example, the Wharton Latino organization in conjunction with the Black Wharton could apply to Tangible Change to host a business themed, cross-cultural event. Visit the Tangible Change website at for more information on the types of events they fund and how to apply.

    ● Academic Departments – given the nature or topic of your event, it is sometimes a good idea to seek financial assistance from the academic department that directly relates to your activity. For example, the Real Estate Department might find some benefit in co-sponsoring a guest lecturer on mortgage markets with the Wharton Real Estate Club.

    ● Corporate Sponsorship – Please refer to our Corporate Sponsorship Guide, found under the "Club Leader Resources" tab

  • Someone within the University asked me for a 26 budget code – what is that and what do I tell them?

    A university 26-budget code is an internal number that tracks your club’s bank account within the University of Pennsylvania. It allows University partners to work directly with us to acquire funds from your account. Please email Lee Kramer, Director of Student Life, to let him know that your club needs to submit a budget code for payment.

  • What is the tax reimbursement policy for non U.S. citizens who purchase items for their clubs?

    It is not recommended that non-U.S. citizens purchase items for their clubs because non-U.S. citizens may be subject to additional tax. Additional forms are required by the University for non-U.S. citizens. Please see the receptionist in the Wharton Undergraduate Office for these forms.

  • Where can I find the Office of Student Life Policies?

    Please find the Office of Student Life Policies here.