ACPB makes plans to improve activities

Andrew Gaug

For more than 20 years, the All Campus Programming Board has brought musical acts such as Incubus, Counting Crows, Bob Dylan and The Roots and comedians such as Dane Cook and DL Hughley to campus.

But during the past year, the group has received a heavy amount of criticism from students who were disappointed in the lack of big-name artists who have previously visited Kent State.

“I was a huge proponent of ACPB in the 2004-2005 year,” said Mark Krugman, director of college rock for Black Squirrel Radio. “It just seemed like everything they brought to campus was great — real once-in-a-lifetime experiences.”

But Krugman said his opinion changed last year.

“I was disappointed, honestly,” he said.

Along with a few other friends, Krugman voiced his opinion about FlashFest and its lack of a headliner by helping create a Facebook group titled “FlashFest ’06… missing the ‘Flash’ and the ‘Fest.'”

“FlashFest is the one thing I think most of campus looks forward to every year,” Krugman said.

The disappointment of Krugman and other students laid in the lineup that featured Wu-Tang Clan’s GZA, ska band Mustard Plug and former “MTV Jams” and “Sisqo’s Shakedown” host DJ Skribble. It was a list of artists Krugman described as “very late 90’s.”

Former ACPB Special Events Director Amy Mathews said the board failed to treat its job with the proper responsibility.

“It’s a lot of responsibility,” Mathews said. “If you don’t treat it with respect, you have such a horrendous downfall like last year.”

Mathews also said she felt the downfall of ACPB was a fault of the person in charge of booking concerts. She said last year’s concert director put personal interest ahead of what students wanted.

“That person has a sole responsibility for 25,000 students,” she said. “We were putting in a lot of work and dedication, and he just was never around.”

Senior nursing major Christopher Taylor is the incoming vice president of ACPB and said improvements are going to be made.

In addition, both Taylor and incoming president Shana ScottScott are trying to find a way to get more student feedback about what they want to see.

“Ten members of a committee cannot decide what students want to see,” Taylor said. “We need responses from at least 300 to 500 students.”

Although Mathews credited Scott for her efforts on getting student opinions last year, she said the questions are too open-ended.

Mathews said the problem was that Scott asked students what bands they want to see play at Kent State.

“Of course they’re going to say ‘I want to see Dave Matthews Band’ or some band that costs $500,000,” Mathews said.

Mathews suggested that students chose from a pre-selected list of potential bands.

Scott has similar ideas for the potential survey that ACPB is creating — ideas that include asking questions pertaining to regional musical preference (such as the U.S. versus the U.K.) and more specific questions — such as whether students prefer artists such as Atreyu or Yung Joc.

Taylor said that he thinks working with such a diverse group of students will be beneficial.

“It brings in a lot of very strong opinions,” Taylor said.

Even Krugman has joined the ACPB to see what he can do when it comes to programming.

“I want to bring the contacts I’ve made through working at the (radio) station, and I hope to bring a different viewpoint,” Krugman said.

Contact student affairs reporter Andrew Gaug at [email protected].