Ancillary Fee Support
Most often, Student Governments will collect membership fees for advocacy organizations via an ancillary fee. These are the fees that are collected outside tuition to support the benefits and supports students receive beyond academics.
On this page, you will be provided with a general guide to support the proposal of a new ancillary fee on campus that would support your membership to advocacy organizations.
Foremost, for those who want to hop right in, below is a downloadable ancillary fee proposal form, that is prefilled with some suggested starting language and numbers.
A "How-To" Guide
Let's look at some different considerations to keep in mind when considering the proposal of a new ancillary fee.
What's the Benefit?
While the detailed list could go on on on, the overall benefits include:
Space to connect with other student leaders.
An elevated voice to the provincial level, that is amplified with more voices at the table.
Freedom from the need to become directly involved at the operational level during provincial events.
Is it flexible?
OSV could easily recommend that everyone considering membership apply for an "OSV fee", so why do we recommend an Advocacy fee?
If your student association decides that OSV isn't for them after implementing an OSV-specific fee to support membership, the last thing you want is to have an additional hurdle to exit the organization - with a general advocacy fee, you can end your membership and use the fee to support your own internal advocacy efforts instead. That's why a general advocacy fee is what we would consider best practice, and what we ultimately recommend student governments put in place to support advocacy memberships and efforts at all levels.
Is the cost reasonable?
This is very subjective, but when exploring this, we recommend evaluating the cost of the fee against both the benefit it will bring to your student association, as well as the benefit it will bring to your student population.
We would be happy to provide you with a copy of our budget and workplan to support an understanding of how the membership fee is used.
We won't pretend we're the only student advocacy organization out there - student advocacy is a big deal, and one that can be tackled from a ton of different angles, and at various levels of government.
Knowing this, we built OSV with some specific goals in mind, the most important of which being that OSV should be student run.
We have built a framework on the governance and operational side that is specifically tailored to ensure students are the centre of everything we do.
More, we lead representation in our niche by both our board size and in the number of students we represent.
Does the Board Approve?
This probably goes without saying, but when considering a new or increased fee for students that is to be collected by the student government, the student board should be in support of the cost compared to the services. Should a presentation to your student board be in order, OSV can arrange for a representative to present our case and share answers to all questions.
What's the Timeline?
Well, it depends...
Some Student Associations are able to establish an ancillary fee in time to have it included in the next academic year's fees, some however will either have to wait until the following year to join, or they can pay their membership fee from an alternate budget line for the first year.
It really is vastly different at each college and each student government has different budget constraints, so if you would benefit from support in the process, we are happy to help you explore what options might work best for you.