SUB discusses events for upcoming school year
Ciara Hopkinson | Tuesday, September 19, 2017
With events like Dogs and Donuts, weekly movie showings, AcoustiCafe every Thursday night and a concert each semester, Student Union Board (SUB), has a hand in many of the on-campus programs aimed at improving student life. Executive director Jackson Herrfeldt, who is starting his third year at SUB, said one of SUB’s main goals is to engage the student body as much as possible.
“We’re working with different organizations on campus for big events in the spring semester and we’re also really spending time focusing on working with what students want. We’re trying to make sure every event we have is geared toward as many students as possible and what they would enjoy best,” Herrfeldt said.
SUB is comprised of nine different committees: AcoustiCafe, Antostal, Collegiate Jazz Festival, Concerts, Movies, Festivities, Services and Special-E, or Special Entertainment. Sammy Meehan, one of SUB’s assistant directors, said she is looking forward to the flexibility Special-E offers. While the committee has mostly brought in comedians, Meehan said new programming is in the works.
“Special-E is the miscellaneous committee within SUB and has a lot of freedom to bring a variety of acts to campus,” Meehan said in an email. “We have been talking about bringing mind-readers, hypnotists, improv troupes and magicians, so there is a lot to look forward to from Special-E this year.”
Meehan also expressed her excitement to be involved in the planning of the Collegiate Jazz Festival, or CJF, at the end of February, which is the oldest college jazz festival in the country.
“It is one of my favorite events on campus. It is a weekend-long festival that attracts college jazz bands from around the country,” Meehan said. “It is a unique event because many local residents also attend the event, so it helps connect ND students with their local community.”
SUB committees start planning big events like CJF months in advance, Herrfeldt said, to ensure the contracts and logistics are in order. Planning is already underway for CJF and for the first semester concert. Both Herrfeldt and assistant director Madi McFarland said concert plans are kept quiet until they are finalized.
“We always like to keep it a little bit secret just because if anything falls through we don’t want it to get out, but we’re definitely working on developing a new system for our concerts, dividing that up a little differently to really please as many students as possible,” Herrfeldt said.
One such change to the concert plans is to book a bigger artist for the spring semester concert, McFarland said in an email.
“Concerts is definitely our most confidential committee because there is a lot riding on who we bring to campus. We usually have one concert each semester but we decided to go for a smaller one this semester and have not made any plans for next semester yet,” McFarland said. “Planning for this event starts far in advance, so once we confirm the artist for our smaller concert this semester (which should be fairly soon) we will start planning for next semester.”
On a smaller scale, SUB plays movies not yet released on DVD every week for just three dollars, while the Services committee hosts finals and midterms stress relievers, providing students with free food and an excuse to take a study break. The Festivities committee plans events like their free guacamole giveaway on National Guacamole Day during the first week of class. Both Herrfeldt and McFarland said Dogs and Donuts is by far one of SUB’s most popular programs.
“My favorite event in the past that I have been a part of is Dogs and Donuts. It’s a Festivities event where we bring Rise’n Roll donuts and puppies from nearby shelters and just hang out on the quad. It is so much fun and a great stress reliever,” McFarland said. “This year, Festivities is looking forward to putting a fun new spin on this event, which is all I can say but get excited for that.”
Herrfeldt said SUB’s cooperative and open-minded group dynamic is what has brought him back each year.
“We always like to joke that we’re the fun side of student government because there’s a bunch of different divisions of the student union and we take the programming division,” Herrfeldt said. “I think because of that and because we do such unique and interesting events, we thrive on a fun, comedic team-bonding environment.”