Activities Board at Columbia
The Activities Board at Columbia (ABC) is the largest of five governing boards that oversee undergraduate student groups on campus. As of Fall 2009, there are 157 organizations recognized by ABC, including cultural clubs, performance groups, publications, and special events. ABC recognition affords a group the right to officially use the Columbia name, access to space reservations, and a potential budget.
There are three categories of recognition for student groups, Categories A, B, and C. Category A is a more limited form of recognition generally reserved for newer or less active groups, as well as groups that do not require significant funding. Such organizations are allotted a maximum of $250 per semester by appeal. Category B groups are allowed to submit a budget to the ABC in the spring for the upcoming year. Category C groups are those (such as heritage months) that are allocated not at the end of the year, but immediately prior to their event.
ABC has a complicated structure of appeals, allocations, and event approval that enable the board to serve as fiduciary for its groups, liaison with the administration, and solve problems within the bureaucratic structure. While the ABC traditionally has received much criticism for its shortcomings as a student-run organization, recent boards have worked to make the organization more into an advocate for student groups in their efforts to build community on campus and create new events.
ABC consists of an internally elected Executive Board composed of four members, usually with prior experience on the board, thirteen Representatives-at-Large, elected by the officers of recognized clubs, and three liaisons from the General Studies, Columbia College, and Engineering student councils. These twenty individuals are responsible for approving expenditures, advising recognized groups in cooperation with Student Development & Activities (SDA), and voting on the allocations to each group.
In campus culture
In the 2007 Varsity Show, ABC was portrayed as a maniacally greedy, evil organization that had started World War II and which denied student groups funding in order to reconstruct the orb that once sat atop the Sundial, so as to determine the location of Alexander Hamilton's treaure. The depiction is a result of the shortchanging many student groups feel at the hands of Columbia's administrative and student bureaucracy, of which ABC is an integral part.
Email abc_exec to reach all members of the current board.
- President: Scott St. Marie CC '10
- Vice President: Betty Kim CC '10
- Treasurer: Bill Jung CC '11
- Secretary: Vikas Anand CC '11
- President: Samantha John SEAS '09
- Vice President: Grace Chan CC '09
- Treasurer: Scott St. Marie CC '10
- Secretary: Krissie Zambrano SEAS '09
- President: Paula Cheng CC '08
- Vice President: Dominic McClure CC '08
- Treasurer: Jacob Weaver CC '09
- Secretary: Samantha John SEAS '09
- President: Keith Hernandez CC '07
- Vice President: Lissy Hu CC '07
- Treasurer: Angela Kou CC '08
- Secretary: Allison Fortune CC '07
- President: Stanley Tan CC '06
- Vice President: Shyam Kadakia SEAS '06
- Treasurer: Keith Hernandez CC '07
- Secretary: Robert Wray CC '06