Students march around campus to protest Studio Arts Building conditions

By Olivia McClure University art students and faculty marched from the Quad to the Student Union in a mock funeral for the School of Art Thursday, protesting dilapidated conditions of the 90-year-old Studio Arts Building. Organizers decided on a silent protest and black clothing to symbolize the potential downfall of their program if the building is not renovated soon, said painting senior Brinna Ryan. “We’re dying,” she said. “If we don’t get help, we will flounder and drown.” Ryan said she and other students are tired of paying the same tuition as everyone else while having to work in an aged, crumbling building that is home to peeling lead paint, bad drainage, a damaged ceiling and rats, among other problems. Although Facility Services has “come in and fixed what they can for the time being … it’s a Band-Aid on the problem,” Ryan said. Despite the protest, she worries the state legislature will not approve the funding required because the arts are not a priority. “They say we’re a department that doesn’t bring money in, so we’re low on the list to get funding,” Ryan said. “That’s not OK. We bring more to the University than just money. We bring culture.” Until the building is renovated, students must work in conditions they fear are harmful to their health and safety. “This place will kill someone,” Ryan said. “It will. Give it time. Someone will be in the wrong place at the wrong time.” Read the full article here:

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