SFB funds CUB’s Rihanna bid

The College Union Board (CUB) cleared its first obstacle to securing hip-hop artist Rihanna for its Spring Concert after the Student Finance Board (SFB) unanimously awarded it $126,387.30.

“It would be the perfect concert to have,” Katerina Gkionis, CUB director, said. “We have not had a large, diverse concert in four years, and we feel that this will be a fantastic change from the concerts that we have had in the past years.”

Rihanna became CUB’s first choice after it learned of the increased Student Activities Fund (SAF). The SAF increase raises students’ tuition bill, but provides SFB more money to allocate to campus organizations, allowing them to plan bigger and better events.

CUB’s next step will be approval by the Board of Trustees, which has to approve any single expenditure over $28,600.

If the request by the Board is approved, CUB will secure dates to hold the concert in the Student Recreation Center and place a $125,000 bid for Rihanna.

SFB was unanimous in its support for a concert of this magnitude. Eva LaSata, Student Government Association assistant representative, said, “It looks really good for our school if Rihanna comes, because we’re a small school.”

The rest of the funding will be used to pay for a to-be-announced opening act, lighting and sound, stage and barricade, insurance, catering, police, recreation center staff and publicity.

CUB representatives said they “will publicize like we have never done before.” It will be reaching out to other New Jersey colleges, including Rowan and Rider universities.

There will be a $20 ticket fee for College students and $25 for non-students. It is tentatively scheduled for a Saturday in April.

CUB’s second request of the meeting, a “Spring Comedy Show featuring Wanda Sykes and Demetri Martin,” was also unanimously awarded funding of $83,605. Because the talent price for Sykes is $45,000 and the price for Martin is $35,000, CUB must also secure the Board of Trustees’ approval before placing a bid for the comedians.

“I think it’s great they’re branching out and getting a woman comic,” Jim Gallagher, equipment center manager, said. Both comedians would perform hour-long acts in the recreation center.

A $15 ticket price is set for College students and $20 for non-students for the show, tentatively set for February 2009.

The Asian American Association (AAA) had six requests at last week’s meeting, mostly for its annual “Experience Asia” events. SFB awarded $5,121 for a comedy show featuring Kevin Shea.

AAA’s “Experience Asia” lecture showcasing Magdalen Hsu-Li was unanimously awarded funding of $4,684, and the annual “Opening Ceremonies/Multicultural Buffet” was allocated $2,114. The buffet is set for Oct. 29 in Brower Student Center.

A $788 “Experience Asia Publicity” request was also awarded funding. SFB awarded $458.75 for a “Food Workshop.”

AAA’s last request for “Fantasia” was funded $127.

SFB, which prior to the meeting had a total balance of $497,698.65, allocated a total of $224,138.05.