Mathew Biadun | Contributing Writer
Like many other students lured by free donuts, I’ve found myself occasionally scrolling through Fizz, a new app that has become viral across campus. Plenty of posts, shocking and unrestrained as they are, caught my eye. But one post specifically recently drew my attention. A simple meme, criticizing the Campus Activity Board for choosing, quote; “another sh*tty artist for the fall and spring fest.” A post that received over a thousand likes and, in fact, has become the tenth most-liked post as of the writing of this article.
Now, this to me is simply an ungrateful opinion. ECSU has to understand the nature of CAB. The majority of CAB-involved students are not paid, but rather volunteers, only working out of a desire to create an amicable, fun and pleasant environment for all of us. I myself am not active in CAB; but I hold great respect for all of them, and I think the rest of the student body should too.
No one criticizing CAB seems to realize the practical reality of their operation. Connecticut State Schools are not currently doing very well. A Campus Lantern article published just late May discussed this, when fellow-ECSU students went to the state capital to protest against budget cuts. Last year, students similarly rallied at Western Connecticut State University to protest against cutting social sciences majors, in the face of financial qualms. Central Connecticut State University (a school with twice the number of enrolled students compared to Eastern) has been facing proposed budget cuts. Even UConn has been raising its tuition.
I went to the President’s Breakfast on the fourth of this month. I did not hear any indications towards economic success. There is a reason that the Library Cafe has been automated to save costs, and that the school has only re-opened the Student Center Cafe on weekends this semester (and even that is only a trial period). In the coming years, Eastern Connecticut State University is expected to lose millions of dollars; far from making a profit or even breaking even.
Under all this economic pressure, we have to cut the CAB-Crew some slack. They are already providing students with cheap, affordable concert tickets. It is true that much of the money spent to organize these events are drawn from the students (through tuition and/or dorm fees). However, the priority of these funds is undeniably going to go towards preventing layoffs or cutting classes, not getting a high-profile artist to perform.
If students are truly unhappy with the concert choices, then the most obvious answer is to simply get involved. How many of the students who liked that post actually volunteer at CAB? I doubt there are many. In truth, students seem to be happy to complain about the concerts, but unwilling to actually become involved in improving them. Instead of whining about CAB’s choices, the student body should instead show the unpaid CAB-Crew the respect they deserve, and if dissatisfied, actually volunteer to help improve the events.