RICHMOND, Ky (LEX 18) An email was sent out Thursday on behalf of EKU President Michael Benson in regards to a campaign to fund the new pep/marching band.
Benson said that restructuring the EKU Marching Band was one of many strategies identified to capture a total of $25 million in savings and cost avoidance caused by state funding, increased pension obligations and a decline in tuition revenue.
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You can read his letter below.
"Beginning in Fall 2018, the EKU Marching Band will be restructured into a new format, organized and supported by the Division of Student Success and Campus Life, in collaboration with the School of Music, which will provide support and instruction. This new model will offer voluntary athletic band participation to students of any major. This is one of many strategies identified to capture a total of $25 million in savings and cost avoidance necessitated by reduced state funding, increased pension obligations and a decline in tuition revenue.
We recognize the unique experience and value the Marching Colonels bring to our students, alumni, fans, athletic teams and the community at large. The University has formed an ad-hoc committee to assist with restructuring this program and soliciting participation and support for the new band. CLASS Dean Dr. Sara Zeigler and Dr. Eugene Palka, vice president for Student Success, have agreed to co-chair the EKU Band Task Force. Members will include faculty, staff and student representatives from the School of Music, Development and Alumni Relations, Campus Life, Athletics, and Communications & Brand Management.
This committee will work to plan the transition, implement recruitment strategies for band members and immediately begin identifying potential financial resources that could support either a pep or marching band model. The existing and anticipated costs of sustaining an independent marching band program are significant, but if the student interest is there and resources allow, we will make every effort to continue the great history of our Marching Colonels. We will continue to explore all opportunities to incorporate musical elements, including traditional live band performances, at our athletic and community events.
We hope you will join us in supporting these efforts, we have launched a campaign to fund this new pep/marching band. You can learn more at:http://www.alumni.eku.edu/marching-colonels."