Carleton Ultimate Fund (CUF) December 2017 Update
Operations and Transparency
Greetings to all Syzygy and CUT alums from Northfield, where our December weather last weekend was near 50 degrees and reminded us a bit of our regular weather during Alumni Weekend. There will be more about Alumni Weekend 2018 in the coming months as we start to pull together a slightly different schedule based on the feedback we received from a post AW survey and due to the tragic closing of one of our favorite venues (The Rueb). For now, know that this year’s weekend will be a big one, with more than the usual great reasons to attend.
This update is all about CUF, how we’ve been operating since our annual meeting last May, and our continuing efforts to support Syzygy and CUT as they compete and excel as Division I teams at a Division III school. At our annual meeting last May, we heard two clear and strong messages regarding where our priorities should be focused: on equal support of both teams, and on increasing transparency into how we function. These priorities have been the core of our operations over the last seven months.
As a CUF Board, we committed to equal support of both teams at Alumni Weekend 2017. We are pleased to share that in early November, a check for $20,000 was sent to Carleton and deposited directly into the budgets for CUT and Syzygy—$10,000 to each program. This gift represents the first truly equal allocation of funds provided by CUF, but it will not be the last. We are committed to equal giving from here on out. In addition to equal giving, we are also working on adding more Syzygy representatives to the CUF Board. Emily Muirhead McAdam ’08 joined the Board in December 2016 and Miranda Roth Knowles ’04 joined in June 2017. More Syzygy alumnae will be in the mix for board positions as the current members term out.
With regard to increased transparency, we want to share a bit more about how money gets from CUF to the teams. In the past, CUF accepted funding requests from the teams, and distributed money in a somewhat piece-meal fashion. To provide for greater transparency across the board, we have completely revamped our funding mechanisms: CUF will now give a yearly, one-time gift, shared equally between the teams, through official Carleton channels (via a restricted gift to both teams), which is then dispersed directly into CUT and Syzygy’s club sports budgets.
Carleton’s club sports coordinator, Aaron Chaput, is our partner on these gifts and works with CUF and the team’s treasurers to ensure that the money is spent on the things our community wants to support. These priorities include winter training time, stipends and travel support for coaches, stipends for students who couldn’t otherwise afford to participate, and other items deemed important by the teams. This new model allows for maximum transparency: the College knows exactly what amount is coming in from CUF and exactly how the teams spend the money; the teams know earlier how much money they’ll have to work with; CUF gets out of the business of writing checks directly to things like dome time or stipends; and you as donors can be assured CUF is doing its best to support the teams through the clearest and most appropriate means.
This change in operations for CUF is just the beginning of what we’d like to share with you, but is certainly the most relevant given the feedback we received from our fellow Syzygy and CUT alums at Alumni Weekend 2017. There are further changes we’re in the process of implementing, and more changes coming in the near future. The good news is that one of those changes is to provide more and regular communication with you.
Thank you for all you have done to date to help CUF and to help our teams be the best they can be. Our Carleton ultimate community is unique and special, and we all want to maintain that for future generations.
Emily ‘Muirhead’ McAdam – Syzygy ’08 & CUF Board Member
Brent ‘Rex’ Nystrom – CUT ’92 and CUF Chair