Google results for sponsee have scattered definitions in unreliable sources, so it does not appear that is a real word. I'm looking for something similar, a single word.

The specific context is a social group membership application where new members must be sponsored (as in definition 2, here - "one who assumes responsibility for some other person or thing") by existing members. I am looking for a single word to describe the target of such a sponsorship. I am about to sponsor a fraternity, but I would like to have a more general word for what I'm sponsoring. Next time, the fraternity could well be a study club, or something else.

Therefore, what is the sponsored party also called? E.g. if I sponsor somebody, that person is my __?

  • 6
    Sponsee "is unnecessary, and abhorrent in form... As a corollary, anyone who uses either of these words will immediately be plonked into the category "illiterate philistine"."
    – Hugo
    Oct 31, 2011 at 22:23
  • 2
    If the sponsored party is a single individual, and only you or a very small number of sponsors are bankrolling him, he'd be your protege. For more broad-based arrangements, I think most people would just say your fraternity, for example, is a pet project Oct 31, 2011 at 22:23
  • 1
    @FumbleFingers protégé, protégée != *protège
    – tchrist
    Jul 16, 2014 at 18:44
  • 2
    @tchrist: Yeah, I know all those. But they're for French people. I don't normally do accents on English words. Jul 17, 2014 at 1:47
  • 3
    @tchrist: Fair enough. Just be careful not to come across as a pompous reactionary die-hard! :) Jul 17, 2014 at 16:25

5 Answers 5


Sounds like a beneficiary.

It's a reasonably broad term, but sponsoring is similarly broad.

  • Especially if the sponsorship involves financial support.
    – GEdgar
    Jun 16, 2015 at 21:46

In the section of their Consolidated Code regarding sponsorship, the International Chamber of Commerce sticks to sponsored party.

Apparently, they wanted to avoid hideous neologisms like sponsee -- which isn't even in my Merriam-Webster Unabridged.


Protégé would appear to fit the bill. OED:

A person (sometimes spec. a boy or man) who receives the protection or patronage of another; a person who is guided and supported by someone with greater experience or influence. Also in extended use.

The bit about “(sometimes spec. a boy or man)” has to do with the word’s French and gendered character: the feminine form would be protégée.

This word also serves as counterpart to mentor; attempts to substitute telemachus for that function have gone nowhere.


Go with beneficiary. Google's NGram indicates that since 1800 it has both sponsee and protoge beat "hands down" (https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=beneficiary%2Csponsee%2Cprotoge&year_start=1800&year_end=2000&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2Cbeneficiary%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Csponsee%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Cprotoge%3B%2Cc0).

Any adult will understand what you mean.

  • This was already given as an answer.
    – Mitch
    Jan 10, 2019 at 14:30

If tutor, then tutee is acceptable, then sponsor, sponsee seems like it should be. Granted, they both sound silly, but what else you gonna call it?

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