Task Force Finalizes New Programming Board

A task force comprised of students and administrators that formed in December to create a new organization for University programming has reached a finalized structure for the future of campus entertainment and recreational student activities at Boston College.

After serving as the traditional source of funding and coordinating campus activities-including concerts like Modstock, discounted events in downtown Boston, and the Pub Series-UGBC announced in December that it would divest its programming department, eliminating nearly its entire role in programming. In response, two advisors from the Student Programs Office (SPO), Director Gus Burkett and Associate Director Mark Miceli; two student co-chairs, Kendall Stemper, A&S ’15, and Alex Orfao, CSOM ’16; and a combination of nine undergraduate representatives from BC2Boston, Night on the Heights (NOTH), and Campus Entertainment, assembled a task force to outline the future of programming. Despite lacking a finalized structure until last week, the new programming board has now reached a definitive framework for the way it will fund, plan, and conduct regular campus recreational activities and community interaction.

The tiered system of leadership within the programming board, which has yet to be titled, begins with a president, followed by a vice president, and then four directors-one director for each department of the board. The departments include Live Entertainment, Trips and Excursions, Special Events, and Campus Engagement. Each director-led department also features one or multiple assistant directors for subsections within each of the four departments, who oversee subsection coordinators.

The Live Entertainment branch of the programming board consists of three subsections-concerts, music, and non-music-each to be headed by an assistant director that oversees coordinators. The department is tasked with recruiting and signing both musical and non-musical performers for live, on-campus events. The Trips and Excursions branch of the board will manage the transportation of students to off-campus events throughout the greater Boston area, much in the vein of the former and sole provider of off-campus entertainment, BC2Boston. Under the new programming board, BC2Boston will exist as a subsection within the Trips and Excursions department, to be headed by an assistant director, but the branch will now also include two other subsections-Interactive Outings and Beyond Boston.

Both the Live Entertainment and Trips and Excursions branches of the programming board will consist of three assistant directors-one for each sub-department-who each oversee a group of coordinators.

The third branch of the board, Special Events, features no sub-departments, but will still be comprised of a director, assistant director, and several coordinators. The goal of Special Events is “intended to draw and unite students of all ages and interests to foster a sense of community, celebrate milestones, and/or honor traditions,” according to a report released by Alex Orfao, a student member of the task force and CSOM ’16.

The Campus Engagement branch of the new programming board was designed to promote interactive student events akin to community dances or the Pub Series, and includes two sub-departments-Arts and Culture, and Community Building. According to the report, the branch aims to program “Participatory events that promote interactions through an array of outlets … Catered to various communities on campus while endeavoring to merge interests and encourage new experiences.”
Under the new programming organization, the name Nights on the Heights (NOTH) will no longer exist, but the board may continue to program similar events if it chooses.

“The NOTH name is no longer-however, many of the NOTH typical events will still be held,” Orfao said in an email. “I see a lot of them falling into the ‘campus engagement’ section of our structure but the benefit of this re-structure is that it leaves a lot of space for new ideas and allows for collaborations among all the sub-committees.”

Now that UGBC and NOTH will no longer receive the funding for programming they previously did, those funds will be redistributed among the Student Programs Office’s (SPO) programs and services, including the new programming board, though it is yet to be determined how those funds will be allocated.

The programming board will also not be subject to time constraints-unlike NOTH, the new programming structure will not be confined to events planned from 8-11 p.m between Thursdays and Saturdays.
In total, the board will consist of 60-70 members. Both the president and vice president have already been appointed by SPO, and interviews for director positions begin today. On Tuesday, the selected directors will join the panel to interview and select assistant directors. Once chosen, those assistant directors will join the panel to appoint coordinators at interviews scheduled to take place Thursday.

About Connor Farley 70 Articles
Connor Farley was a copy editor and news editor for The Heights. You can probably find him at a Phish show.