The Office of Student Engagement (OSE) in conjunction with the Registered Student Organization Funding Board (RSOFB) and Club Sports Funding Board distributes funds collected by the Student Organization Fee to registered student organizations for the purpose of supporting programs, projects, and events that help the organizations succeed in meeting their goals and foster positive student development.

General Club Funding Resources:

A Tax ID Number or EIN (Employer ID Number) is like a social security number for your organization. Student organizations are often in situations that require a Federal Tax ID Number (opening an organizational bank account, conducting fundraisers, receiving reimbursement if allocated money through the student organization fee, etc.). Registered student organizations are not permitted to use the MSU's tax identification number; therefore, they are required to obtain their own EIN. The purpose of the EIN is so the IRS will not make any organization members personally responsible for taxes on revenue that the organization has earned.

Tax Exemption

Student organization registration with the Office of Student Engagement does not imply tax exemption. Only College departments and offices may use MSU’s tax ID number.

Apply for an EIN Online

The following steps were written to assist a registered student organization with applying for an EIN online. If you have any technical issues or have questions regarding the form, please refer to the IRS’ help and support services. You may also contact the Office of Student Engagement at [email protected].

  1. Go to the IRS’ Apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) online website.
  2. Click the APPLY for an EIN Online link.
  3. Click the Apply Online Now button.
  4. Once you have read the instructions on the page, click the Begin Application button.
  5. Select the View Additional Types, Including Tax-Exempt and Governmental Organizations option for the “What type of legal structure is applying for an EIN?” question and then click the Continue button.
  6. IMPORTANT: Any of the following options may describe your type of organization: 1) Political Organization; 2) Church-Controlled Organization; 3) Community or Volunteer Group; 4) Social or Savings Club; or 5) Sports Teams (community). Once your selection is made, click on the Continue button.
  7. Confirm the type. Click Continue.
  8. Select “Banking Purposes”.
  9. Select Individual.
  10. Fill out your information or advisor/another officer information. Enter your first name, last name, and SSN/ITIN.
  11. Preferably, enter your on-campus address. This may be your advisor’s or your SUB mailbox. You may also use the Office of Student Engagement Address: 222 Strand Union Building or 751 W. Grant St., Bozeman, MT 59717
  12. Next page is verifying address.
  13. Enter your information. DO NOT put MSU or Montana State in front of your club name. For example, DO NOT say MSU Social club. Instead use, Social Club or Social Club of MSU.
  14. Enter the requested information about your organization and click the Continue button when you are done. Repeat this step for the next screen requesting additional organizational information.
  15. Select the Other option for the question “What does your business or organization do?” and click the Continue button.
  16. Select the Organization option for the question regarding your business activity and click the Continue button.
  17. From the list of organizational activities select the activity that best describes what your organization does (most organizations will select the Social or Civic option) and click the Continue button.
  18. If you are unsure, Social or Civic is a good option.
  19. IMPORTANT: Select Receive Letter Online. DO NOT choose receive by mail.
  20. Once you receive the information, retain it in your student organization files for current and future leadership. Also, please feel free to provide the Office of Student Engagement a copy at so we can keep on file.
  21. Hit Continue until confirmation that you have finished and completed the form.


Document Link

n order to request and receive funding, your student organization MUST first have a bank account. Reimbursement checks WILL NOT be made out to individuals, only to the organization name.

We do not endorse any one financial institution, however, these two banks are either on the MSU campus or nearby. Feel free to explore other options on your own.

First Interstate Bank

What is required to open an account for a Student Organization with First Interstate:

  • MSU Office of Student Engagement recognition letter
  • Tax Identification Number/Entity Identification Number (EIN) obtained from the IRS
  • Two organization representatives must be signers, one of whom MUST be an advisor
  • Minutes from a recent meeting stating who the current officers are, that a bank account at First Interstate will be opened, and who the authorized signers on the account will be
  • All signers information is required before the account can be opened
    • Name, date of birth, social security number, physical address, and two forms of identification
  • Initial deposit of $100.00 
  • Please allow at least 30-45 minutes for the account opening process

First Security Bank

670 S. 19th Ave, 406-585-3900

What is required to open an account for a Student Organization with First Security:

  • Tax Identification Number/Entity Identification Number (EIN) obtained from the IRS
  • Minutes from a recent meeting stating a bank account at First Security will be opened, and identifying who the authorized signer(s) on the account will be.
  • Only need one authorized signer who can be a student. Signers' information is required before the account can be opened:
    • Name, date of birth, social security number, physical address, and photo ID
  • Initial deposit of $100.00 
  • Please allow at least 30-45 minutes for the account opening process

Follow this link to the website to get an electronic copy of a W-9 form.


To fill out the W-9 form, follow these steps,

  • Line 1: Fill in your student organization name.
  • Line 2: Enter in any additional names your club would go by.
  • Line 3: Check the "Other" box and fill "Student Organization" in the text box.
  • Lines 5 & 6: fill in the Office of Student Engagement's address. Your checks will be sent there for you to pick up.
    The address is,
    Office of Student Engagement
    PO Box 174200
    Bozeman, MT 59717
  • Under Part 1, make sure to fill in the EIN number that's associated with your organization's bank account.
  • Then, under Part II, make sure to sign and date.
  • After you have completed the W-9, please upload to CatsConnect at this link.



Funding Policies & Procedures for Registered Student Organizations 2023-2024

These policies are in effect July 1st, 2023 through June 30th, 2024

The Office of Student Engagement (OSE) in conjunction with the Registered Student Organization Funding Board (RSOFB) distributes funds collected by the Student Organization Fee to registered student organizations for the purpose of providing programs, projects, and events that help the organizations succeed in meeting their goals and foster positive student development.

Office of Student Engagement

The Office of Student Engagement is the primary liaison for registered student organization funding. They distribute and collect funding applications, advise the Funding Board, manage all student organization fee monies and work with funded organizations to spend and track their allocated money.

Registered Student Organization Funding Board (RSOFB)

The Registered Student Organization Funding Board allocates the student organization fee to registered student organizations.


The mission of the RSOFB is to allocate funds to registered student organizations to help them meet their goals and enrich the student experience.


The Funding Board shall be comprised of 6 members. 3 of whom shall be members of the Associated Students of Montana State University (ASMSU) Senate, 2 of whom shall be students-at-large. The RSOFB Chair will be the Senate Pro Tempore, and will not serve as a voting member unless a tie-breaker is necessary. If the Pro Tempore is absent, a temporary chair position will be designated to a current RSOFB member. The Office of Student Engagement will appoint a staff member to serve as advisor to this board. They will not have any voting rights.  The RSO Funding Assistant will serve as liaison between the RSOFB and student organizations by communicating Funding Board decisions and feedback.

Board Appointments

All appointments will be made at the start of the fall semester, which will comprise that academic years’ board.

  • ASMSU seats will be appointed by the ASMSU Senate.
  • At-large seats will be filled by application, collected by the ASMSU President. All applications will be brought to ASMSU Senate for final vote and approval.
  • If RSOFB seats become vacant, they will be filled by the same method for ASMSU seats and At-large seats.

Responsibilities of Funding Board

The Funding Board will allocate two-thirds of the estimated student organization fee at the end of the spring semester (VIM Funding Pool) for student organization activities/programs to take place over the following academic year. The remaining one-third of the estimated student organization funding (Rolling Funding Pool) will be allocated throughout the academic year. All Funding will be allocated based on availability of funds. For Rolling Funding: The Funding Board will review the funding applications from eligible registered student organizations and select the organizations that will receive funding using the criteria stated herein. Funding Board will meet weekly from mid-September through March (with the exception of University holidays, breaks and finals weeks). For Vim Funding: In May of each year, Funding board will award eligible registered student organizations funding based upon volunteer hours logged up to 234 hours per club- no application will be needed from RSOs to recieve these funds. RSOFB will also be responsible for reviewing student organization funding policies, application process or changes.



All RSOFB members will go through training and orientation, hosted by the Office of Student Engagement.


Three voting members will represent a quorum and must be present in order to make funding decisions. The RSOFB Chair will serve as a tie-breaker if necessary. Proxy voting by email for the purposes of meeting quorum or application approval between meetings is allowed. Those not in physical attendance have the right to participate by video conference, subject to any limitation established in rules adopted by the RSOFB.

Conflict of Interest

If a member of the RSOFB has a conflict of interest, they must reveal this to the board and are to abstain from voting. Conflict of interest is defined by if a voting member is a leader or member of an organization whose application is under review.

Budget & Allocations

The maximum allowable amount to be allocated to each organization per academic year shall be $1500.00 in Rolling Funding, and $3500.00 in VIM funding based on the prior year's volunteer hours. Allotment of funds will be first come, first serve based upon availability of funds and the level of requests submitted by the registered student organizations. While the RSOFB strives for consistency, a number of factors are considered when approving funding requests. Budget and available funds will fluctuate based on student enrollment.

Club Sports Funding Board

The management of Club Sports Funding is under the Club Sports Executive Board (CSEB).  Club Sports Funding is governed by Club Sports Funding Policies, which is overseen by the CSEB and ASMSU Recreational Sports and Fitness.

To be eligible for funding, the funding proposal and organization must meet the following criteria:

  1. The student organization must be currently registered with the Office of Student Engagement and in good standing (not on probation or revoked status).
  2. The proposal is consistent with the purpose of the registered student organization, as defined in its application.
  3. Events or participation in the program is open to all students of Montana State University.
  4. Program or service is implemented in compliance with federal and state laws and regulations, city ordinances and university policies.
  5. For applications submitted outside the time frame of two Funding Board meetings (generally two weeks) before the funding need, the RSOFB cannot guarantee Funding Board review in time for date-specific funding needs.
  6. Funding must be spent by April 1, 2024.

Prohibited Uses. The Funding Board will NOT fund:

  1. Purchase of alcohol or tobacco. NOTE: This excludes any minimum fees for alcohol service with approved university alcohol vendor.
  2. Philanthropic donations, charitable contributions or gifts of any type.
  3. State and Federal Income taxes.
  4. Any organization that does not have open enrollment and does not comply with the anti- discrimination section of the RSO Policies, found HERE.
  5. Any item or activity deemed excessive, not justified, and/or in conflict with the mission of the registered student organization.
  6. Social functions that are not related to a program or educational event.
  7. Payment to members of the organization for any purpose, unless with special approval from funding board.
  8. Funding Board will not accept funding application requests for programs/events/activities that have already occurred or for items already purchased before funding is approved. No retroactive funding.
  1. Academic scholarships.
  2. Bank account fees (initial deposits, overdraft, monthly fees, etc.).
  3. International Travel
  4. Monetary investment funds.
  5. Firearms and ammunition. NOTE: This excludes targets and firearm accessories.
  6. Damage fees and cancellation fees under the control of the club.
  7. Funding for courses for academic credit, including sending instructors to training or payment to instructors.
  8. Gift cards.

Examples of Approved Permitted Uses. (Note: This is NOT an exhaustive list of permitted uses.)

  1. Seed monies for fundraising activities for the registered student organization.
  2. Registration fees for activities, events or conferences.
  3. Educational programs.
  4. Support for organizational operations such as publicity, supplies, and activities of the registered student organization.
  5. Movies/films to be shown publicly or to advance the purpose of the registered student organization.
  6. Speakers/lectures.
  7. Other activities consistent with the mission of the registered student organization.


Student Organizations are required to stay in compliance with the IRS, per guidelines set by ASMSU Legal Services (  Registered student organizations are eligible to receive funding to pay the $275 fee for the 1023-EZ form. The 1023-EZ form allows student groups to become tax exempt as long as they file the 990-N form annually to stay in compliance. Student groups can receive this funding only once from the student organization fee pools and if they fall out of compliance again, they are held accountable to pay the $275 fee. In order to seek funding for this fee, student organizations must work with ASMSU Legal Services first to get back into compliance. The RSOFB has the final decision to approve or deny this fee for clubs on a case-by-case basis. Clubs can ask for this funding every six years after they form or become out of compliance for the first time. 

The available funding pool is broken down into two pools:


  • The VIM Funding pool is allocated every spring to registered student organizations based upon their number of Volunteer Service Hours to use in the following academic year. If a club is allocated VIM Funding in the spring, they are not eligible to spend that money until after July 1st.
  • Two-thirds of the estimated student organization fee comprises this
  • Your eligibility for VIM Funding: your organization must be a registered student organization with OSE.
  • If you are allocated VIM funding, you are elegible for Rolling funding.
  • Vim Funding is to be used in the academic year after the volunteer hours are acrued and tracked.
  • A spring application deadline will be set by the Office of Student Engagement.


VIM Funding Process

  1. Minimum of one club officer must attend a MANDATORY information session hosted by the Office of Student Engagement and RSOFB. These will be held each semester.
  2. Find Volunteer Hours. Search for volunteer oppurtunities on CatsConnect, GivePulse or through the Office of Student Engagement. 
  3. Log Volunteer Hours. Individuals within organizations will track their volunteer hours for their club through the GivePulse platform- each individual mut be listed in the "membership Roster" on CatsConnect for thier hours to count. Eligible hours need to be: 1) Unpaid, 2) Within the State of Montana OR in association with MSU (ie: Engineers Without Borders, BreaksAway Trips, etc.). Hours can only be counted toward one club at a time (If a club memebr is part of multiple clubs, they will choose which club recieved their hours). Mandated service hours (University Conduct, Cort-Ordered) do not count. Hours can be accumulated August 1st through April 30th of each year. Funding Board will allocate funds in early May based on accumulated volunteer hours on a first come, first serve basis. A staff member from the Office of Student Engagement will double verify reported volunteer hours before they are applied to a RSO's VIM Bank.
  4. Attend Spending Orientation. An officer from each funded organization must attend an orientation hosted by the Office of Student Engagement at the beginning of the Fall semester to learn the process for spending your allocated money.


  • The Rolling Funding pool is available to registered student organizations from mid-September to April. RSOs must complete a minimum of 25 VIM hours to be elegible to apply for rolling funding.
  • One-third of the estimated student organization funding comprises this pool.
  • The maximum amount awarded to an RSO will be $1,500 from this pool of money.
  • RSOs can apply a maximum of twice in an academic year. (i.e. you can ask for $800 in November and then $700 in March). Cannot exceed $1,500 total over the year.
  • This pool of money is spent within the current academic year.
  • A weekly application deadline will be set by the Office of Student Engagement.


Rolling Funding Process

  1. Before applying, clubs need to complete 25 hours of community service (VIM Funding).
  2. Submit Application. Fill out the Rolling Funding application found on CatsConnect. Applications will open in the Fall. The funding application must be SUBMITTED a MINIMUM of two weeks before the funding is needed.
  3. Application Review. The Registered Student Organization Funding Board will meet to decide on funding allocations. Clubs are required to send a representative to the Funding Board meeting to present on their request. Organizations will be notified within one week of the Funding Board meeting if their funding application was approved and the total amount awarded.
  4. Schedule Spending Orientation. A representative from the organization (preferably Leader and/or Treasurer) must attend a meeting with the Office of Student Engagement after they have been notified of funding approval to learn the process for spending the allocated funds.

The RSOFB reserves the right to transfer money between funding pools as needed.

OSE is responsible and accountable for funds management, allocation oversight, and compliance with MSU, State, and Federal policies  

Every club who receives Rolling, VIM, or Club Sports Funding must send at least one representative (prefer leadership) to the Student Organization Leadership Conference held every year. If clubs are unable to send a representative, the Office of Student Engagement will be hosting a series of professional development trainings for clubs throughout the academic year. You will be asked to send a club leader to one of these in lieu of the conference. If your club does not fulfill this training requirement you may risk losing your current funding and/or the next academic years’ club funding eligibility.

Registered Student Organizations that receive funds from any of the funding pools must work with the Office of Student Engagement to spend their funds. Clubs may access the funds as outlined below:

  1. Student Organizations MUST attend a spending orientation BEFORE they are allowed to spend any of their allocated money.
  2. Funds will not be dispersed in advance and will be used only for direct payment of pre-approved expenses and/or reimbursements for items in the approved budget. All reimbursement will be made payable to the registered student organization, not to individual club members or advisors.
  3. The registered student organization is solely responsible for all expenses that exceed the amount of the allocation awarded to the organization.

Failure to follow these processes and timelines may result in loss of future funding:

  • Turning in reimbursement receipts within 30 days
  • Turning in P-Card purchase receipts within 72 hours
  • Turning in travel forms within 10 days

If your student organization does not follow the above, you will receive a written warning first. If any of the above rules are broken a second time, the OSE has the right to revoke eligibility of club funding for one academic year.

The Office of Student Engagement and the Funding Board may suspend or revoke the funding allocation before distribution if the registered student organization has engaged in activities that violate state and/or federal laws or the policies of the university. The funding will be discontinued as of the date of suspension/revocation and no expenses incurred after that date will be paid.

If it is reported that any clubs, club leaders, members or advisors are misusing organization funds, OSE will report to the MSU Dean of Students Office for further investigation. All individuals involved may face disciplinary measures through the MSU Student Code of Conduct and if applicable, state and local laws will apply. The student organization may also face suspension or probation as a registered student organization.

Clubs who have funding, but are in a probation or suspension status with the university will not have access to their allocated funds until probation/suspension is lifted. If not lifted by the end of the current fiscal year, that student organizations’ money will be forfeited.

Denial of Funding

In the event a club disagrees with the RSOFB’s decision to not fund a club or not fund to the level expected, clubs are able to appeal this decision. The appeal process shall be as follows:

  1. Meet with the staff advisor (OSE staff member) of the RSOFB to discuss.
  2. Make a formal written appeal and make the corrections as outlined by the Funding Board. MUST be made within ONE WEEK of being notified of denial of funding.
  3. Written appeal will be brought to RSOFB for a hearing and voted on during the next weekly meeting.

Suspension or Revocation of Funding

The organization may appeal a decision to suspend or revoke a student organizations’ funding. The appeal process shall be as follows:

  1. The registered student organization shall meet with the Office of Student Engagement within one week of the notice of suspension or revocation.
  2. After the meeting, the Office of Student Engagement, in consultation with the Chair of Funding Board, will determine what, if any, actions can be taken for the student organization to regain eligibility for access to the funding allocation. If the registered student organization fails to correct or is incapable of correcting the violation of policy, the student organization will not receive any funding and will not be eligible to seek funding for the organization for one academic year.


If clubs do not spend their entire allocation or all the money was not allocated by April 1st of each year, the money is deposited into the “Registered Student Organization Reserve.”  The minimum amount to be held in the Reserve Pool is $3,000.

OSE reserves the rights to spend and allocate funds from the Reserved Pool.

These policies will be reviewed each spring semester voted on by the RSOFB.