Student Activities reveal student poll results

Lindsay Gaskins

 

Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Eric Church, Imagine Dragons and Carrie Underwood were named the top four choices from the 2014 Spring Concert student poll, revealed by the Office of Student Activities.

At this point, an artist has not yet been confirmed for this year’s concert.

“The top choice from the student poll was Macklemore. They had not decided on this year’s touring schedule so it just didn’t work out,” Tina Powellson, Ph.D., executive director of student affairs in the office of Student Activities, said.

Eric Church was second on the list, and as of right now he has not responded to an existing offer made from Georgia Southern University to come and perform, Powellson said.

Imagine Dragons will be in the studio recording an album this spring, and Carrie Underwood never responded.

“There are so many factors that go into this. There’s the price to bring someone here, the budget we have in place and the artist availability,” Powellson said.

Just because an artist wins the majority of the votes from the poll, does not mean it is a done deal, Justin Jeffery, assistant director of Student Affairs, said.

“It’s a balancing act,” Jefferey said. “It’s also an educational series. These polls can be used for future decisions that we make.”

The way the list is formed is initially through the University Programming Board, a group of students who serve as representatives for the student body.

“We act on behalf of the students,” Chatise Smith, member of UPB, said. “The Office of Student Activities looks to us to give them insight into what the students want.”

There have been complaints among students about the most recent student poll, Smith said.

“We have seen complaints coming from students because they feel like this year’s poll was too country-based, but they need to understand a lot of factors go into choosing these artists,” Smith said.

“We met during the summer and compiled a list of potential artists, it must have been close to thirty total, and we sent that list over to Student Activities,” Smith said. “They then gave us back who is out of our price range or who is not touring during the time we need and then we cut the list from there.”

The student vote has a huge impact on the way the UPB recruits talent to come to campus, Becca Pollack, UPB president, said.

“[The student vote] is the biggest thing, we really take that to heart. A lot of the time, the students feel like their voice isn’t heard or it doesn’t matter, but we base our list of artists completely off of what the students want,” Pollack said.

“Sometimes, though, we just can’t physically afford for certain artists to come. Usually the most popular choice among a lot of our students is going to be the one in the higher price range and we just don’t have that money,” Pollack said.

Part of the budget is paid for through ticket sale revenue. The majority of this covers the cost of production, which can reach as high as $75,000 alone, Powellson said.

Vice President of Student Affairs Theresa Thompson, Ph.D., uses a portion of the student fees her office receives specifically for the spring concert as an investment for the student body.

Powellson said, “That is an investment that she makes. She sees the value in the investment and I appreciate her for that. She knows this experience is valuable for not only students, but for the community as well.”