Honoraria for Guest Speakers and Performers

The AAS encourages student groups and clubs to bring speakers and performers to campus to supplement our education in a wide range of political, social, and interest-oriented activities; however, bringing guests to campus involves many items to be taken care of before the guests arrive. Be sure to read the below carefully if you plan on bringing speakers or performers to Amherst.


The Budgetary Committee requires that groups request funding two weeks in advance of planned honorarium requests. 


Price of Honorarium:

$10-$20 (depending on caliber of speaker) per expected attendee  x  number of expected attendees

To avoid complications regarding funding, be sure to secure all funding before inviting speakers to campus.

The AAS regularly funds speakers at a rate proportional to the stature of the speaker. When a club comes to the BC through the Discretionary Fund one week to request honorarium for a speaker, the BC will initially halve the amount of the honorarium if it equals or exceeds $1000. As with all other funding items, if the request for honorarium exceeds $10,000, the request must go to student referendum. The club will then use the next week to reach out to other funding sources on campus to seek co-sponsorship for the honorarium; these sources include the Campus Activities Board, the Office of Student Activities, the Office of Student Affairs, the President's Office, and various academic departments. Then, the club will return to BC the next week to request the remaining amount of honorarium. The AAS is not responsible for the remaining honorarium if the club does not request it. 

Guest Lodging and Accommodations

Clubs that are bringing in speakers who are coming from long distances (i.e. coming to Amherst and returning home is not a day trip) can request lodging for the speaker. The BC will grant $175 a night for guest lodging and accommodations per guest. The AAS maintains a relationship with the Inn on Boltwood such that the $175 allocated will cover the cost of a one night stay at the Inn. However, to ensure that the AAS can get that rate from the Inn on Boltwood, clubs must meet with a member of the Treasurer's Office with at least three weeks before the speaker's arrival to make the reservation. Late requests will not be considered. Often, if the reservation is not made well in advance, then the AAS will have to either pay full price for a room at the Inn (which costs anywhere from $250 to $310; the extra money will come out of honorarium payment) or reservations will have to be made elsewhere in Amherst or Hadley. There is no reason to come two days before the speaker's arrival to make the reservations - come at the very beginning of the semester for all reservations.

Guest Transportation

Clubs that are bringing in speakers can request transportation funding for the speakers, within reason. The AAS will not fund international travel, but will fund domestic travel; that includes the cost of a roundtrip Amtrak trip, roundtrip airfare, transportation to Bradley or Boston airports, and/or gasoline. As with the cost of hotel rooms, the cost of transportation greatly increases as the date of travel approaches, so be sure to plan ahead and make reservations early.

Rider Items and Meals

Some guests, especially performers, will request rider items. There is a $50 cap for the cost of rider items that the AAS will reimburse. Additionally, if a group chooses to invite a speaker or guest of the College to a meal, funding will be considered for the speaker or guest only at a rate of $20 per guest. Students who wish to accompany the guest are expected to pay for their own meals.

Forms and Payment

In order to pay an honorarium to a speaker, the club must attach the following documents to a check request form for payment to be processed:

  • An invoice, if applicable
  • A signed and dated version of the correct version of the AAS Contract for Services, of which there are two: one for clubs/speakers that followed the timeline and require payment at the end of the performance, or the other for clubs/speakers that either failed to follow the timeline or have accepted being paid within 30 days after the event (to be revised before the start of Fall 2015). If a separate contract was negotiated with a speaker or performer, they must also sign and submit an AAS Contract for Services, unless that separate contract was negotiated through the Office of Student Activities.
  • A signed, addressed, and completed W-9 form, which can be found here. This is necessary to be submitted again, even if the honorarium has performed at Amherst before and even if the College may have an old W-9 on file.

If a speaker requires special accommodations for payment, the club must alert the AAS Treasurer with at least two weeks notice to make these accommodations; otherwise, the speaker's payment will be processed when we receive it.

Regarding payment...

If the honorarium requires payment the night of the event, then all check request forms, Contracts for Services, and W-9 forms must be submitted two weeks before the event date - no exceptions.

If the honorarium will accept payment after the event, then all check request forms, Contracts for Services, and W-9 forms must be submitted within fifteen (15) days after the event date, to ensure that we can pay the honorarium within thirty (30) days of the event date, as stipulated by our Contract for Services.