First-Year FUNds

  • Dorm-wide Socials

    Plan an event for your whole dorm, such as a masquerade or super bowl party

  • Corn Maze

    New England's Four Seasons

    Plan a trip outside Harvard to experience New England's four seasons

  • The Games People Play

    Plan a board game night - with food - in one of the Yard Common Rooms

  • Dorm Socials

    Activities for the Entire Entryway

    Celebrate a great year with a special study break, outing, or entryway dinner

Your Idea + Our Money = Awesome Events

First-Year FUNds can be used to support a social event, cultural activity, or local excursion planned for first-year students, by first-year students, in which the DSO covers the full or partial cost of the event. Although First-Year FUNd events tend to be smaller-scale events (under 50 people), first-year students are encouraged to open the event to the entire class as a way to meet other first-years. Events organized through the First-Year FUNd program usually cost between $50 and $75 and are held in one of the many common spaces in the first-year dorms. However, other options, such as an off-campus outing or event, are possible, so be creative!

How the process works

  1. Think of an event you would like to plan and host that others might also enjoy.
    • Where you will the event take place?
    • When is the ideal time?
    • Who is likely to come?
  2. Complete the First-Year FUNd proposal form to notify the DSO of your proposal and request for funds. You will receive a decision regarding your proposal via email within one week.
    • If you have not heard from the DSO within one week, contact Seren Ozkan.
  3. Host the event!
  4. Follow up with the DSO to finalize reimbursements and share feedback about the success of the event.

Please note that only first-year students are eligible to apply for First-Year FUNds. Questions can be sent to the Dean of Students Office.

Frequently Asked Questions

Once my program is approved and funded, how do I access the funds?

When your event is approved, the DSO will help you plan according to the budget. Typically, students will need to pay for First-Year FUNds expenses up front, and, following the submission of receipts, students are reimbursed. The reimbursement process can take up to a month after receipts are submitted.

What is a reasonable budget for a First-Year FUNd event?

Most events are designed for a relatively small number of participants, so budgets should be planned accordingly. A cooking event for 25 people might cost $100 for groceries and supplies while a night of watching presidential debates for 50 people might only cost $65 for snacks and drinks.

What if I need transportation?

First-Year FUNd events should generally be planned to use public transportation and the cost may be covered by your funding. If you wish to plan an excursion to a location with no public transport options, the DSO will help explore other means of transport, but the expense may be prohibitive.

How should I advertise my event?

The DSO will help advertise your First-Year FUNd event appropriately based on the event. Most events are open to any first year students who want to come and are therefore advertised in the Yard Bulletin. Events targeted to a specific audience (e.g. members of a dorm) will be advertised more selectively.