Money given by Society members is fundamental to the experience enjoyed by current St Mary’s students. The travel bursaries and the Fifty Six Book Fund are explained in other areas of this website and are funded by alumni money directed to these specific funds. Both of these are administered by the Society via committees.
But, most of the money donated by Society members is placed within the Development Fund, unless it is assigned to a specific priority determined by the donor. The Development Fund (which now resides within the College Trust) was established under the direction of Jenny Hobbs and is administered by the Development Committee. This committee meets each term to consider applications which may be made by any current student, student leaders, or college officers. This fund is chaired by the Principal with representatives from all Common Rooms, the Society and College management.
In recent years this fund has financed a wide range of applications, which have included a large grant for gym equipment, a new drum kit, choir stalls, a modern PA system, plasma TVs for the JCR and MCR, a new flotilla of boats for the boat club, kit for newly established sports teams, grants to support choir visits, equipment for the Arts Society, and development of the new eco garden. These grants have been essential to allow Mary’s students to gain a wide range of skills whilst at university and also to support the transition to a mixed college, which has seen the formation of all the male sports teams currently extant.
Other areas funded are the provision of postgraduate bursaries and choir scholarships. Future plans will see the use of alumni money to support College sporting activities via the new sports fund and the long held ambition of gaining a new bar space through the formation of a ‘bar and arts centre fund’.