Student Organization Account Policies

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This page includes information on student organization account policies for Student Senate recognized student organizations at Lehigh University. If you have questions about a specific policy please contact the Office of Student Engagement at or 610-758-6670. 

FAQ Pairs: 

General Policies for Student Organization Accounts

All organizations are responsible for the funds in their club accounts, in particular, the persons holding the offices of President and Treasurer.  Senate funded organizations should base their expenditures on approved events in their budget.  It is important that all organizations spend their funds in the best interests of their members, and in accordance with the University's event policies and financial procedures.  Any violation of the following policies or procedures could result in but not limited to, a hold on all events and transactions, loss of funds, loss of recognition, and a hold on a student's records/transcripts.

  • All organizations are required to keep their funds in an account established by the Office of Student Engagement.  No other bank accounts are permitted.  Failure to adhere to this policy will result in the loss of funds and recognition.

  • All transactions must go through the club account maintained by the Office of Student Engagement. This includes any income for deposit and any expenses requiring payment or reimbursement.   

  • Prior approval from the Office of Student Engagement is required for all expenditures; please provide one to two weeks advance notice for all check payments, purchases, or reimbursements.     

  • Generally the President and Treasurer are the individuals authorized to access funds in your account, however, other officers may be granted permission.  For any other club member who needs to access funds, permission must be given by the President or Treasurer to the Office of Student Engagement.  The Advisor or Faculty/Staff members have no authority to access funds from club accounts on their own.

  • Account balances can be viewed anytime via LINC.  Simply sign into LINC and select the Finance tab to view your account.  Access to LINC Finance for your club may occur by two individuals:  the Primary Contact (typically the Club President) and the Financial Officer (typically the Club Treasurer).   The Office of Student Engagement Coordinator regularly reviews club transactions and balances, however, the Club Treasurer should also keep track of all financial activity for the club and balance to LINC.    

  • Deficits should not occur in club accounts, the Office of Student Engagement staff member and the club officers work together to prevent deficits.  In the instance a deficit occurs, the Treasurer and/or President must deposit funds to cover the deficit within one week from the time it occurs.  When necessary, funds must be collected from members for deficits.   

  • All club accounts have two types of funds:  Club Funds and Senate Funds. 

  1. Club Funds are received from dues, fundraising, and donations.  Spending the funds allows more flexibility, and the funds carry forward each year. 

  2. Senate Funds are from Senate via a one time allocation at the beginning of the academic year.  Spending the funds requires following Senate Allocations Guidelines, any unused funds are returned to Senate at the end of the academic year.   

  • The Senate Allocations Committee understands that you may need to add new events to your budget that arise during the year.  Therefore, it is possible to substitute new events for those previously budgeted. Depending upon the situation, it may take up to three weeks for approval of the event or expenditure. ADVANCE APPROVAL FROM THE STUDENT SENATE AND/OR A STUDENT ENGAGEMENT STAFF MEMBER IS REQUIRED. Please plan appropriately for a transaction of this nature.

  • General restrictions on funds allocated by the Student Senate are as follows:

  1. No illegal activities, which include gambling or alcohol  

  2. No religious functions

  3. No political functions

  4. No social events

  5. No purchase of prizes or awards

  6. No purchase of personal items (t-shirts, shoes, books)

  7. Organizational meeting food & drink-$100 maximum one meeting each semester  

  8. Hotel room-$125 maximum per room per night, minimum four people per room

  9. Speaker honorarium plus travel expenses-$1000 maximum per speaker   

  10. Advertising in Brown & White or Patriot - $100 maximum per event

  11. For a complete list visit the Student Senate Allocations Committee website.

  • Club funds have less restrictions than Senate funds.  However, Club funds must be raised and spent in compliance with University policies and Pennsylvania State laws. 


All money (cash or checks) received from dues, fundraising, donations, etc., MUST be deposited into your club account.  You may not have a separate bank account for the club. 

To deposit funds to your account please note the following:

  • Deposits can be made Monday-Friday during the business hours of 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. 

  • To make a deposit fill out a special deposit envelope, these envelopes are available at the Office of Student Engagement, room 333, in Christmas Saucon.       

  • Any checks should be made payable to “Lehigh University” on the memo line add the club name/Lehigh University.  Checks should not be made payable to a club officer’s name, such as the Treasurer’s name.  Also, do not deposit checks made payable to a charity (ex. American Cancer Society), these checks must be forwarded to the charitable organization.  

Donations Received

You may receive donations from businesses, parents, students or alumni.  Deposit these donations as explained above and clearly label the deposit envelope as “Donation.” 

To acknowledge a gift, it is necessary to have the following information: Donor's name, mailing address, type and amount of gift, purpose of gift.

*Please note that you may accept an unsolicited gift from a donor, however, if you wish to actively campaign for funds from sources outside the University, you must coordinate those efforts with the University Development Office. 

Payment by University Check - To pay a business or person external to Lehigh University

You request a check payment when you need to pay a club expense to a business or person outside of Lehigh University. 

Typical club expenses requiring check payments are:

  • Purchase t-shirts from a vendor

  • Club dues to a national office

  • Conference registration fees                                                                                                      

  • Professional services like a DJ, speaker, performer, or instructor                                                                            

  • Banquet hall rentals                                                                                                                          

To request a check an invoice from the vendor is required, or if payment is for professional services a contract must be supplied.  All contracts are reviewed and signed by the Director/Assitant Director of the Office of Student Engagement, students should never sign contracts. 

Processing time for a check is approximately seven to ten (7-10) business days from the date that you submit all required documentation.  Submit invoice or contract to the Office of Student Engagement containing the following information: full name of payee, complete mailing address, tax identification of the business or social security number of the person, description of event and/or expenses, date of event/expenses, amount due.

Reimbursements - Get money back for out of pocket expenses that are pre-approved

Reimbursements are given when an approved expense occurs; detailed receipts must be provided.  Request for reimbursement should be done within 30 days of the receipt date or by the end of final exams for that semester, whichever is sooner. You must provide all receipts to get reimbursed. Discuss your expenses with the Coordinator.  

The Reimbursement process is through the Wells Fargo CCER System. Procedures are as follows:

  1. Submit a Reimbursement Request Form and User Agreement found on the Office of Student Engagement Website by clicking here. PLEASE follow the instructions when completing the form.  

  2. Click here to watch STUDENT TRAINING VIDEO (From Purchasing Department). NOTE that the first part of the DocuSign may look slightly different on the Student Training Video due to the upgrade specifically for our Clubs and Organizations. 

  3. An Easy Quick Guide is also available to guide you through the process. 

  4. The DosuSign Student Reimbursement Training Video and other important information can also be found on the Purchasing Services website. The funds will be deducted from your club account and deposited directly into your Bank/Debit card once all steps of the reimbursement process is completed. 

Special Notes:

  1. Reimbursements are labeled as either Non-Travel or Travel.  The Controller’s Office must also approve Non-Travel expenses over $1,000 and Travel expenses over $2,000.

  2. Reimbursements are given to the person who incurred the expense, which should be the person whose name appears on the receipt.   

  3. Reimbursements cannot be done for expenses for professional services such as a DJ, speaker, performer, or instructor.  These are services that must be paid by a university check; see section on Payment by University check.                                                                      

  4. Receipts from establishments serving alcohol must be itemized showing that no alcohol was purchased.

  5. Reimbursements for gas used in personal vehicles for an organization trip is calculated by the miles driven multiplied by the current federal mileage rate.  Gas station receipts are not reimbursed because they are not an accurate calculation.

  6. Travel reimbursements such as airfare, conference registration fees, and other travel expenses cannot be reimbursed until after your trip.

  7. Travel reimbursements for conferences must include a conference agenda and a list of the names of students who attended the conference.  

  8. Travel reimbursements for airfare must include original boarding passes for all flights going and returning, in addition to airfare payment receipts.

Cash Advance - Borrow money from the club account for expenses that are pre-approved

Cash advances are available for certain expenses.  This allows you to borrow money from the club account up front so that you do not tie up your personal funds.  Cash advance amounts are tracked on your Bursar student account and temporarily added to your Bursar balance. Detailed receipts must be provided when settling cash advance. 

Procedures are as follows:

  1. Visit the Office of Student Engagement, room 333 in Christmas Saucon to discuss with the Coordinator and complete the Cash Advance form.

  2. Make an appointment with the Bursar's office at and take your Lehigh ID, the signed and approved form to pick up your money. 

Settle Cash Advance  

  1. After spending money, return to the Office of Student Engagement, room 333 in Christmas Saucon with receipts and any left over change equal to the original amount of the cash advance and complete a Request for Settlement of Advance form that must be done in the office.  

  2. Take the settlement form, receipts, any left over change, and Lehigh Student ID to the Bursar’s Office to settle the advance.  You don't need a second appointment to settle. The Bursar is open M-F 8:15am-4pm. 

Special Notes:

  1. When taking a cash advance for an event, you become personally responsible for this money. If you cannot produce the proper receipts or do not settle the advance within the required time, your Bursar account can and will be billed for the outstanding amount.

  2. Cash advances should be requested with 3 days notice.

  3. Cash advances will be distributed as close to the event date as possible.

  4. Students are permitted to have 1 cash advance at a time.

  5. Cash advances should be settled within 2 weeks after the money is spent and by the person who initially took out the advance.

  6. Advances spent on food at restaurants that serve alcohol must be settled with itemized receipts showing no alcohol was purchased. 

Purchase Orders

Sometimes purchasing items or renting equipment from a vendor outside of the University requires a purchase order or LPO (limited purchase order).  A purchase order is requested by the vendor and is basically a guarantee of payment. A Student Engagement staff member completes the purchase order paperwork and sends it to the vendor before the transaction occurs. The vendor then issues an invoice for payment after receipt of the merchandise/services and once they are determined to be as ordered.

The university allows most types of Limited Purchase Orders up to $2,000.00.  To request a purchase order the following information must be provided to the Office of Student Engagement Coordinator:

  • Club name and account number being charged

  • Vendor name, address, phone number, and fax number

  • Name of the person who quoted you the prices

  • Quantity, description and cost of the items, including any catalog numbers or other information to correctly identify the items

  • Shipping costs

  • Name and address where items will be shipped to

  • Date the merchandise is needed

  • Any other information helpful to placing the order

If the purchase exceeds $2,000.00 please contact the Office of Student Engagement Coordinator for special instructions.