The Arts vs the World

Share This:

A Recent donation from Legend Solar raises questions about the underfunded art department. 

DSU received a $10 million donation toward renovating the football stadium last in April Was it actually April? They announced it in May. While this donation provides an obvious benefit for DSU’s athletic department, the art department still remains understaffed and underfunded. According to McGarren Flack, title?, said there are over 200 students declared as art majors, making it the 10th largest department on campus. If you’re stating these numbers to make them sound needy, I don’t think it works, but it does provide context.

 “I found [the donation] kind of upsetting,” said Riley Anne Williamson said, a sophomore art education major from Layton, Utah. “I’m totally in support for college athletics, but being involved in the art department, I see a lot of gaps where we could use more resources. We’re using secondhand facilities too, but I doubt that the art department will ever get a boost that big.” 

Williamson said she believes that material fees are a primary area where funding would benefit students. Her material fees this year were so costly that she had to drop her ceramics class just to afford them. The inflated fees are reason enough for other students not to take art classes, Williamson said. OK, I’m playing devil’s advocate here, but shouldn’t art majors know they’re going to have expensive supplies? Do they expect the school to pay for them? Some majors are just going to come with extra costs, and it’s like that everywhere.

Development Officer Lance Brown said people tend to give to their passions, which is why athletic donations are so common. As far as donations for individual departments go, Brown said the deans are in charge.

“Typically in a large university, every department would have their own development officer –one in arts, athletics, etcetera– but here at DSU, we go wherever we are pointed to,” Brown said. “Ultimately, the deans are primarily responsible for fundraising for their departments, with some aid from the development officers. They usually hold events or fundraisers.” Lance Brown said.

Ken Beazer, another development officer at DSU, said art is an area that people feel a great amount of affinity for, so they get donations quite often, they just aren’t as large as other areas. Where do those donations go? Are there examples of specific donations? If DSU wants to raise more money for their art department, it is up to students to talk to the dean to arrange more fundraisers and events, Beazer said. 

With the many changes being applied to the athletic department because of Legend Solar’s large donation, students such as Riley Anne Williamson can only hope that a donation to the art department will come soon. This reads like an unnecessary conclusion. I’d end with the previous paragraph.

Nice work, Hanna! I know it was hard finding sources for this, but I think you got some really good quotes. 🙂 – Ashley

Good start! Just remember not to include any opinion and attribute every fact to a source. You might be a little below the word count now. 

I agree you have strong quotes, but I feel like the art department is just starting to sound like a bunch of complainers. For that reason, I’m not sure the story has enough of a “so what.” For example, in your lead you say questions are being raised, but are they really? How big a problem is this? One thing that could strengthen the story is talking to other departments, both in the arts and outside. Do they have the same frustrations? I think this is the kind of story that requires talking to a lot of people to be as objective as possible. RB