JCRC’s must think long term

Students are known for being thrifty with money. Masters in the art of bargain buying, we learn to make our pounds – or, more commonly, our overdrafts – stretch. Buy-one-get-one-free deals and cheap nights out are the norm when that student loan has to see you through until the next payment.

In light of this, therefore, it was surprising to learn that the James College JCRC spent £4,000 on a single night during Freshers’ Week. Thursday night of the schedule promised a welcoming gig at the new James College bar, headlined by indie rock group The Maccabees. But when they, alongside a second act, pulled out beforehand, the James College JCRC was forced to produce a replacement and, ultimately, Radio DJ Reggie Yates was booked for the full £4,000 – a night saved, but at a hefty cost.

It would be a Scrooge move to begrudge the James College JCRC for going that extra mile to ensure their new arrivals enjoyed their Freshers’ Week, however, it begs the question: how does the budget look for the rest of the year?

Unfortunately, the financial implications of spending £4,000 on a single evening may well stretch into the future, and James residents may find their JCRC fails to deliver. After all, one night of Freshers’ Week is just one night during what should be an enjoyable and comparatively carefree first year – the Quad Dash and Bash, the Summer Formal, the Christmas Ball. All events could suffer from the cost of repairing a single night.

What particularly concerns me is the concept of consistency. Applicants choose colleges for a number of reasons, one undoubtedly being the events it has to offer throughout the year. Once Freshers’ Week fever has worn off we look to yuletide and summer events to satiate our hunger for the university experience before reality strikes in year two.

From a personal point of view, I would be happy to settle for one less-than-perfect night during Freshers’ Week if it guaranteed a decent budget for the rest of the year’s events. After all, every member of every college places trust in the hands of their respective JCRC – money matters included. And, from the point of view of a spectator, £4,000 on one night seems like a fairly frivolous spend, even for an elected official.

Members of James College may well argue that Yates’ fee was money well spent. Though if the fun ends with Reggie Yates, the year ahead looks bleak.

3 comments

  1. 3 Nov ’11 at 11:27 pm

    Cameron Lane-Ley

    I will use the same comment from the other article spouting frivolous lies:

    I’m afraid I have some issues with this report. As an entertainments rep on the James JCRC I was involved with the night in question. Not only are a multitude of the facts wrong, for example: we did not charge £10 on the door to the event. The night was included with the Freshers Week ticket purchased and there was a charge of £6 for anyone who had not purchased said ticket and may well not be a fresher, or even a member of James College. Furthermore, I struggle to believe that a James College student commented on and appeared to worry about the cost during the night. The event was well attended and well enjoyed; besides the fact that no-one bar the JCRC, senior members of YUSU, Reggie Yates himself and his management were aware of the cost of the event. If the author feels the need to chastise James College for spending on Freshers Week entertainment then perhaps it would interest them to know that in fact Reggie Yates agreed to perform at a lower fee than other potential acts. I can confirm that the author is not a member of the James JCRC and thus has no up to date information on the James College account and the management of its cash flow. Readers may consider myself to be biased when I say that the event was a roaring success and has set a precedent for music acts in the Roger Kirk Centre, as proved by YUSU’s Live and Loud with Rizzle Kicks attracting an enormous crowd, but this is how we as a team and those who attended the night truly feel. However if I must, then I apologise to the author for James College breaking the mould to provide an all-inclusive nighttime event different to the perhaps more traditional bar crawl into town. If we had not booked Reggie Yates the night would have failed: only then would college money have been wasted as the stage and lighting hired would have been left empty. Not to mention the disappointment of those who had purchased their ticket to find nothing provided for their money. I happily welcome any suggestion the author may have to what we should have done instead. I can reassure anyone truly anxious about the future of James College events that there will be no affect on their quality.

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  2. 3 Nov ’11 at 11:29 pm

    Cameron Lane-Ley

    The author has no clue how the organisation of a Freshers Week works and the costs involved. So I suggest next time he/she thinks they have the next big scoop they consider the facts.

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  3. 8 Nov ’11 at 11:12 pm

    Beth Campbell

    This comment just makes the “entertainment rep” on the JCRC seem extremely bitter; the article does not imply that the event was not well attended, nor does it imply that it was not enjoyed. Maybe next time the article should be read through thoroughly. In addition, if they would like to make a comment on the story in question, they should then put in the effort to write a response that is relevant to the article above; instead of copying and pasting a comment related to another article, which has different information to this one; painting ‘the author’ in an undeservedly negative light.

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