Students should appreciate on-campus events

Kathleen Quinlan

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Mercer students are extremely ambivalent. Our campus has roughly the same amount of campus events as UGA and less students, yet almost every event is barely attended. The people who do go are the ones who want the free shirt.

But there are ways to get the shirt and not attend the event. Show up, get a shirt and leave. This year at Founder’s Day, students did not have to show their programs to prove they attended the program to get their shirt. Instead, tables full of shirts were set up in the middle of the Quad and students lined up. Students who didn’t go to Founder’s Day proudly displayed their shirts in their next classes, saying that they got the shirt anyway.

The bigger events are usually pretty full, but I remember my freshman year when I went to UC Live with popular bands, the UC was barely filled on one side and the floor seats. Sure, some people may not have liked the bands playing that year, but there are a lot of events that happen all the time on campus that you’re sure to enjoy.

I don’t expect everyone to go to every event the school has, but maybe students should attend something that the school puts on for us. I know as a student who has helped organize some events or meetings, when no one shows up, it’s disheartening. People work hard and spend money to make things happen for your enjoyment and you don’t even bothering showing up? Or if you do, it’s to get the free stuff before you leave in three minutes? We see you leaving. You aren’t sneaky about it.

Along with all the events that no one attends, it’s almost impossible for students to attend events if they wanted to because the campus is double-booked. A baseball tailgate and the Mercer Film Festival were scheduled to be at the same time.

As News Editor of The Cluster, it’s upsetting to see such a lack of student involvement — both in the events I ask people to cover and the fact that so few students want to write for this paper. We work really hard, and The Cluster looks good on a resume. What’s more is that a lot of students don’t even know we have a paper. There are stacks of Clusters in buildings and it’s just sad to see our hard work go unnoticed. Sometimes people who do notice the paper just write it off as bad because of how it was a few years ago, not realizing that we have improved over the past few years.

I know not everyone cares about writing (but if you’re a journalism student and you’re not writing for us, what do you expect to put into your portfolio?), but I just think that you need to find something on this campus to care about.  Something more than free shirts, at least.

Comments on this opinion can be sent to news@mercercluster.com

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