The University of Connecticut’s annual homecoming week came to a close this past weekend with the homecoming football game. A lot of planning for the events that were held Monday through Friday occurred behind the scenes, said 2015-2016 SUBOG major weekends chair and 5th-semester communications major Marissa Carbone.
SUBOG allocates a maximum budget of $50,000 each year to plan homecoming. With the week of events just having come to a close, the final billing for this year has not been finalized, Carbone said.
The maximum preparations made for each event are broken down into specific categories, with each event also prepped for unforeseen expenses and advertising. The breakdown for each event is as follows, according to information provided by Carbone.
$7,500 was set aside for the DJ, sound and lights; $4,000 was prepped for fire and EMT services; $3000 was allocated for CSC (a security company for large events); $2,700 was set for police presence; $1,900 was put toward for facility fees; and $800 was allocated to dinner for staff and crews (about 40 people).
$3,000 was designated for all of the trophy awards; $1,500 was allocated to facility fees and $700 was planned toward catering for participants and staff present at the event.
$2,500 was allocated for staging, while an additional $2,500 was put aside for organization float reimbursements. A police presence was given another $2,000; event supplies were given $1,200; staff and judge catering another $900; and fire/EMTs were set for $800.
$3,000 was planned toward hosting a barbecue for 350 students, while an additional $1,000 was allocated toward a green screen photo booth.
“Although this seems like a large allocation of money for one week of events, when it’s broken down by the amount of people that attend each event and the cost of each event, the costs are minimal, but also necessary,” Carbone said.
Individual organizations also spend their own money on things such as supplies, costumes and decorations, Carbone said.
Homecoming is funded through SUBOG, and the money comes from undergraduate student fees, at about $23 per student depending on enrollment. While the enrollment variant determines the overall SUBOG budget, the homecoming budget always averages around $50,000, Carbone said.
“Due to the attendance at each event this year, I believe homecoming was very well received,” Carbone said.
Carbone has been in the Major Weekends Committee since her freshman year, and was chosen as chairperson last year. She said the position has been a very rewarding experience.
“Having an event such as Lip Sync that 4,500-plus students attended gives you the greatest feeling of accomplishment knowing all the work you and your team put in to make these events possible,” Carbone said.
Carbone’s favorite event of homecoming week was the parade because it attracted UConn students, alumni and the general public from in and out of the Mansfield area. However, she hopes, moving forward, participants will dwell less on the competitive nature that seems to arise in certain events.
"We want to try to make homecoming less competitive and more about promoting diversity, school spirit and more student involvement,” Carbone said. “Everyone put in so much hard work and time to make these events special."