BGSA wants to help you make your ideas for events a reality. We have created this guide to help you apply for funding for your student event, how, once approved, you can get paid, and additional resources. For a printable PDF version of this guide click here. Feel free to contact the BGSA Finance Chair ( with any questions.

1. Applying for BGSA Funding
2. Getting Paid
3. Additional Resources

Applying for BGSA Funding

This section explains the two sources of funding (Merit and Discretionary) and how to apply for those funding. Further details about the two funding mechanisms are described in the BGSA Constitution.

follow the steps to get your event funded!

Merit Requests vs Discretionary Funding

Merit Funding
Events that are open to all BGS students and of broad interest to all BGS students

Discretionary Funding
Events that are of primary interest to particular graduate groups

  • Submit your request online
    7 days (by 5PM) before the next GA meeting
    14 days before for Exec Board feedback

  • You must attend the following GA meeting to present the request where it will be voted on by the BGSA student body. Please consult the Requirements of Merit Requests when forming your request.

  • Student events can also be jointly funded by Merit and Discretionary Funding (e.g., journal clubs)
  • Email your program reps with an event description and total requested budget

  • Program reps allocate this funding at their discretion (does not have to be approved by BGSA student body).

  • Before approving an event for Discretionary funding, Program Reps should contact to make sure that there is enough money to fund the event.

Getting Paid

Now that your event has been approved for BGSA funding, either through the Merit Funding or Discretionary Funding, this section explains what you need to do to get paid.

Get Paid

Purchase Order (Preferred) vs Reimbursement

Purchase Order
UPenn approved vendor
and expenses are over $35

Non UPenn approved vendor
and/or expenses are below $35

  1. Call your vendor (UPenn approved caterer or supplier) and get a written quote. Tell them the quote is for a UPenn student event. This quote is sales tax exempt but not alcohol tax exempt.
  2. Email the quote and Funding Request Form to at least 7 days before your event (no exceptions!) Electronic images of signatures are acceptable.
  3. BGSA Finance Chair will respond with the signed funding request form and PO number. Give the PO# to vendor.
  4. During the event sale all itemized receipt and Sign-in sheet from event. After the event deliver these forms to the BGSA Finance Chair.


  1. During the event save all itemized receipt(s) and Sign-in sheet from event.
  2. Within 7 business days of your event, email with receipts, sign-in sheet and Funding Request Form. Electronic images of signatures are ok, you can leave the vendor ID blank.
  3. The Finance Chair will reply with a signed copy of the funding request form.
  4. Create an expense report using ConcurExpense Report.
  5. Fill out Report Header as follows
    • Type of Travel/Reimbursement: "4. Non-Travel Expense"
    • Country Code: leave empty
    • Report Name: a short description with dates (e.g., "BGSA Sympsoium 10/30/13")
    • Report Date: leave as is - automatically generated
    • Policy: "US Expense Policy"
    • Business Justification: description of event with dates. Include the phrase "Please use BGSA funding."
    • Report Key: leave as is
    • School/Center: use default-"(40) MED"
    • CNAS-ORG-BC-FUND- Funding Source: use default.
    • Program: use default.
    • CREF: use default.
    • Lawson AU-UPHS COA: leave empty.
    • Affiliation: leave as is- automatically generated.
    • Notes to Approver. "BGSA-approved event. Funding Request form with Finance Chair signature attached as receipt.
  6. Click Next. You will receive a warning that reads "The student/trainee will include in the Business Justification field full detail..." You can ignore this warning and click Next again.
  7. Under New Expenses, scroll down and click on Student Activities to add an expense. Fill in the relevant fields, including attaching images of itemized receipts. Upload the following documents as "receipts".
  8. Click Submit Report. You should receive and email when it has been approved.


Additional Resources