ALEXANDER BROWN/THE HOYA Friday’s Big Sean concert benefitted from GPB’s 2014 budget.
ALEXANDER BROWN/THE HOYA
Friday’s Big Sean concert benefitted from GPB’s 2014 budget.

After attracting the likes of Big Sean, Calvin Harris and Wiz Khalifa in recent years, the Georgetown Program Board will face challenges procuring star headliners for its Spring Kickoff Concert with the event’s budget set to be cut by $15,000 next year.

When the university discontinued What’s After Dark in November, student groups that had collaborated with the late-night programming organization continued as planned with funding for this year. However, next year, money formerly allocated to What’s After Dark will go toward the Healey Family Student Center, leaving groups like GPB and Relay for Life, which often collaborated with and received funding from the program, without as many resources.

The decision to cut What’s After Dark was made with funding for the HFSC in mind.

“Any remaining funds will be redirected to the Healey Family Student Center and programming with that,” Center for Student Engagement Director Erika Cohen Derr said.

According to the Chair of GPB Tyler Deloach (COL ’16), What’s After Dark and GPB worked together frequently.

“We co-sponsored a lot of our events with them. Between the two of us, we came up with most of the late-night programming on campus,” Deloach said. “A lot of our events that did occur after dark did involve What’s After Dark. That’s no longer an opportunity that we have for late-night programming.”

GPB’s largest and most expensive event, the Spring Kick-Off Concert, received What’s After Dark funding this year. Next year’s concert, however, may face significant challenges because of the $15,000 loss in funding, according to Deloach.

“We are going to see if we can still pull from the same bracket of artists. The loss of $15,000 from What’s After Dark could change the artist bracket. It depends on what artist we choose to go with in the next coming year,” Deloach said.

GPB will lose about $4,000 in funding for other programs because of the termination of What’s After Dark, mainly affecting larger endeavors, like subsidized trips to New York City and Hershey Park. The trips continued this year, but GPB members are concerned about their status in the 2014-2015 academic year.

“We were able to do the New York City trip, but a lot of people were concerned about that. We can’t count on that for next year because of funding. A lot of people are upset about what we can and can’t do,” Deloach said. “It affects our programming in general. … [We are] concerned about what we’ll lose.”

Despite concerns, according to Cohen Derr, CSE will continue to invest in nighttime programming.

“There will still be an investment in late-night and weekend programming on campus,” Cohen Derr said. “GPB will be able to use their funds for their programming, and there will be some additional money that we will use for programming specifically at the Healey Family Student Center.”

Georgetown’s Relay for Life also felt the impact of the elimination of What’s After Dark. Relay for Life expected to receive $5,000 from What’s After Dark this past year, but had to reach out to the Center for Social Justice’s Advisory Board for Student Organizations to make up for the loss after funding was cut. According to Relay for Life Co-President Dan Silkman (COL ’15), the organization will try to adjust to the smaller budget by reaching out to other campus groups and administrators.

“We are cutting spots and scaling back a little bit,” Silkman said. “We have to set up a reasonable budget for the incoming presidents. … It will mean a few slight adjustments and a more concerted effort to find more campus partners — [with] possibly engaging Office of the Provost and the undergraduate schools.”

Aside from student groups, the elimination of What’s After Dark will impact Georgetown students as well. Scott Lowder (COL ’17) said he thought the elimination of What’s After Dark and its related programs could negatively impact student life.

“I would be very disappointed if Georgetown felt this was not a worthwhile endeavor to fund,” Lowder said. “Without opportunities like these and What’s After Dark, students are more likely to participate in weekend activities that the university might not deem as safe or appropriate.”

Courtney Maduike (SFS ’17) participated in this year’s GPB New York City trip, which costs students $25 apiece and covered a round trip bus ride, dinner at Hard Rock Cafe and a Broadway show. A California native, she stressed how the trip helped her to acclimate to the east coast.

“Georgetown knows how many people are coming from the western states, next year a lot of kids are coming from California, or they accepted a bunch of kids from California, that’s part of the college experience,” Maduike said. “I just can’t believe that they’re cutting that much of it, and I can’t see why it’s being cut. I know times are rough and we need to be wise in how we allocate our money, but we shouldn’t take away from our experience in college. Honestly, I’m so dumbfounded by that.”

The possible effect on the spring concert may also serve to reduce the event’s popularity.

“I would think the popularity would go down if they’re bringing artists that people don’t really know as well just because of lack of funds,” Adithya Rajan (MSB ’17) said. “What this does is it opens up more Hoyas to come perform; I could see more people like Tate Tucker having to supplement that to get people to come to see their friends than to just see the headliner, but I don’t think that’s going to be very helpful.”

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