The Sounds of Colorado College May Soon Be Silenced

One of Colorado College’s music clubs, the SOCC, has had a long partnership with KRCC, a local NPR broadcasting radio station. The club has had a partnership with KRCC since the SOCC was founded. KRCC provided funding and support, but their new manager has dissolved all ties with the SOCC, saying that there is not enough funding to keep supporting the club.

KRCC has decided to separate from the SOCC, cutting the budget and withdrawing all of the funding that they have been giving for the past couple of years. The leaders of the SOCC have had to turn to CC in hopes of negotiating future funding and support.

“We don’t really know who to go to, because as long as I have been involved with the SOCC, we have had that relationship with them [KRCC], and they have been a part of us,” said junior Eboni Statham, who is general manager of the SOCC.

Junior Erin Sugarman, the SOCC website manager said, “The fact that they have separated completely and there are no remaining ties between us is pretty uncomfortable.”

The SOCC has to apply for money for next year from the school and the leaders have many concerns about the stability and the future of the club. Recently, the SOCC has expanded quite a bit and the cuts to funding may staunch growth in its future.

“This year has been a huge turning point and we are actually really doing a lot of cool and impressive things and have really expanded our presence on campus and the fact that we might have to dial that back is disheartening,” said Sugarman.

One of the SOCC’s projects this year has been creating an arsenal of rental music equipment (such as mics, amps, etc.) that student bands can rent and use. This has been vital to the growth of many student bands, since music equipment is very costly and not every band can afford to have their own.

Another project that started this year has been recording students’ music and then putting those videos and recordings online and giving them to the musicians, who can then distribute the videos to potential employers who want to hear their music.

Eboni Statham. Photo by Emily Kim
Eboni Statham. Photo by Emily Kim

“We have been really trying to partner more with student bands, and support them,” said Statham.

In addition to supporting student bands, the SOCC organizes almost all music-related campus events. One of their big events was Battle of the Bands, which was enjoyed by a huge percentage of the student body.

“We participate in almost every music event on campus and if that can no longer happen it’s gonna be really questionable for the future in terms of what music is gonna look like on campus,” said Sugarman.

The SOCC also works to unite CC students, staff, and the broader Colorado Springs community.

“We try to involve a lot of staff and students and people from outside CC. We try to incorporate people from all over campus and in the community, so it’s not just students. Which I think is one of the biggest things that the SOCC does; how valuable it is to all different types of people…That’s probably the most upsetting thing for me, if the SOCC were to get all of its funding cut, then we wouldn’t be able to provide that [musical community] for people, and I think that the school would really lose a valuable asset,” said Sugarman.

Statham and Sugarman both voiced their frustrations with the administration and their lack of response to the SOCC’s efforts to work with CC and ensure that the club can continue to function in the future.

“We are trying really hard and putting in a lot of effort, and we are not being met with that much support, which sends a really bad message to the student body and a bad message to musicians on campus. And that’s what we are trying to fix,” said Sugarman.

Statham said, “I just want proof that the administration and CC cares about student musicians here.”

Sugarman and Statham are meeting with administration next week to discuss the future of the SOCC.

Quotes from the Petition

“The SOCC has been a passionate and creative partner on a number of great and important music initiatives at CC, and I have enjoyed working with them and planning for the future. Cutting funding or limiting access when we are just getting some solid momentum going across the various musically-inclined parts across this campus would be a huge blow, after all the work that has been done. I’m proud of the SOCC and I value what they add to this community and to Colorado Springs.” – Heather Powell Browne, Assistant Director of Off-Campus Study

“I can’t imagine a CC without music. Without the SOCC working tirelessly to bring fresh tunes over the radio and through events to campus. My friends that work behind the scenes are passionate about what they do and it shows. Every event manages to present fresh artists and their respective projects with well-executed ease and enjoyment for everyone. With the extinction of the SOCC, this campus would lose an invaluable facet of its collective identity and energy, and that is why I believe in this cause and ask for support.” – Kyra Bergsund, Sophomore

“The majority of CC’s clubs on campus are student run. The weight of things such as education on racial issues, gender issues, sustainability issues, and bringing people together to see the interactions between them all is provided by the students. It is clubs like the SOCC that bring everyone together to discuss these and also unify us as a community around music and fun events. It makes no sense to shut down the SOCC when they are one of the only groups successfully bringing everyone together campus to build community and address the important issues our administration is slowly, if at all, addressing.” – Will Sardinsky, Junior

“I worked for the SOCC for a year as the promotions manager, and that experience gave me invaluable skills about graphic design, event coordination, social media promotion, the printing process, and digital media as a whole. Plus, it gave me the opportunity to help spread word of the vibrant music scene at CC. I’ve now qualified for a digital media internship in Denver, which I never could have done with my time working with the SOCC. It’s a special organization that allows students to share their music, express their creativity, and get their voices heard clearly in an increasingly media-saturated world.” – Anna Squires, Junior

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