The Value of My Friends

The dean of graduate studies asks for my budget. What budget? I have $100 of my own money sitting in the bank account for Reclaim International. I’ve probably made like 20 total trips to Stanford, UCSF, Berkeley, and Salinas, costing about $500. It’s cost about $1000 to set up the accounts. Anticipated, there’ll be about $3k of travel per person going. Knowing nothing about setting up a budget, besides all that Resident Assistant programming experience, here’s my budget.

Bare minimum:

  • Travel for the team of 10: $30,000
  • Travel for the media team of 3: $9,000
  • Accounting expenses: $4,000
  • Local travel: $2,000
  • TOTAL = $45,000

So, how much have I been given? I’ve personally been handed $200 dollars (thanks Janet and Wendy). I know there’s more sitting in a bank account somewhere, but I haven’t looked into it. Through simply asking friends, I could easily raise $3,000. If I did my own Kickstarter, $10,000 seems feasible. $20,000 makes me nervous. We’re going to go for $32,767.

IMG_20121205_192511 (1)

How much have I spent so far? I’m only now starting to keep receipts. For instance, during the Kickstarter video filming, I had the lady in the dim sum food truck write me a receipt, except she didn’t know how to spell dim sum (I spelled it for her), nor did she know the name of her business.

Here’s roughly what I’ve spent:

  • Office supplies: $50
  • Local travel: $500
  • Accounting expenses: $1,000
  • Food: $300
  • Domain name: $10
  • Communication: $20
  • Total = $1,880

None of what I’ve listed has included all that people are doing for free. Free consulting, free accounting help, free graphic design, and free video production. In another project I worked on, we ran into issues with conflicting philosophies of how we value people, especially the skills of our friends. I hesitate to use the word free, because I’d pay these people if I had the money; we just don’t yet.

  • Free media consulting: 10 hrs from Leigh
  • Free marketing consulting: 2 hrs from Eric
  • Free business consulting: 2 hrs from Jeremy, 3 hours from Wendy, and 1 hr from various
  • Free law consulting: 1 hr from Pat and 1 hr from Matt
  • Graphic design: 1 hr from Kathleen
  • Meetings with professors: 2 hrs from James, 2 hrs from Bala, 1 hr from Gary, and 1 hr from Ruby
  • TOTAL = 24 hours

I’ve saved the biggest expense for last, documentary production. Now MasterWerks seemed willing to do the job, knowing that I have no money. Considering all that, I have no idea how much anything costs. I mean, I hear that there are people who give away $20,000 in charitable donations. That’s how much I make, as a grad student, per year. When I was working on my masters, I made $14,000/yr. As more people are asking for the budget, I had to ask MasterWerks how much the quality of work we are getting costs. Here we go…

Media Work – 11/19/12
1. Kickstarter Video

  • a – $4,500 – full day shoot (one person), 1 dslrhd camera package, 2 days of edit
  • b – $9,000 – full day shoot (two people), 2 camera packages, 2 days of edit
  • c – $13,500 – full day shoot (three person & one assistant), 3 camera packages, 2 days of edit, 1 day graphics

2. African Student/Humanitarian Video

  • a – $180,000 – 2 camera people, 21 days, 2 dslrhd camera packages, 14 days edit
  • b – $200.000 – 3 camera people, 21 days, 2 dslrhd camera packages, 1 Red Epic camera package),14 days edit
  • c – $230,000 – 3 camera people (three person & one assistant), 21 days, 2 dslrhd camera packages, 2 Red Epic camera packages, 14 days edit

So, to comfortably cover all of our costs, we’d need about $300,000. In addition to all I’ve mentioned, I’d like to also compensate team members for their time. Many of them, like David, Chris, Kassa, and Tracy, have helped write, edit, and meet with people. For team members, I feel like I’m going to work out a system of compensating people per blogpost or something. Whatever people end up doing for the Academic Bridges project can be stored as a blogpost. I’d also want to reserve about $2,000 to pay back those who’ve donated their consulting (which is no where near what it would cost, as one person told me they charge $250/hr).

So, how much money do I have right now? Probably, I’ve had donations of about $1,000. I know that the graduate division might cover travel for UCSC students. Then we’d likely get $32,767 from Kickstarter. So, how will we divide up this money? I’ll worry about getting more money later. First things first…

Dividing up $32,767

  • From what I hear, I lose 10% off the bat – $3,276.70
  • $2k for each person’s travel, 10 team members + 3 media team – $26,000
  • Documentary production – $2,000
  • Misc expenses, Whatever’s left – $1,490.30

Am I forgetting anyone? Probably, but not intentionally. My PhD is in Computer Science, I have had zero business instruction in my life. To cover the basics, we’d need about $50,000, adding $5,000 for Kickstarter overhead. In regards to paying people back for their time, I’d like an additional $2,000 for that. Anything above that will go to MasterWerks, up to $185,000, if the project gains enough donations.  I’d like to aim to get them $73,000 as a minimum. So, if we get $250,000, we’d have $10,000 left to pay team members and $3000 to cover lawyers and accountants. If we get $300,000, that extra $50,000 will go towards paying people up to the market value for their time.

$300,000 is my magic number for now.

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