The diverse and flourishing Columbia arts scene means that there is no dearth of talent on campus, but it also means that for many students involved in the arts, the resources offered by Columbia often fall short of their needs. Over the past year, students have formed clubs and groups that help fill in the gaps where the University falls short.
Columbia’s pressing shortage of practice spaces has forced many campus musicians into spaces without air conditioning or sound proofing—including, on occasion, their own dorm rooms. Eager to institute change, students circulated a petition that garnered over 1,000 signatures and gathered testimonies from professors and students at other renowned universities. Administration received the petition and is working to expand available practice space, but in the meantime, clubs are forming their own spaces. CU Records, to name one, has opened a new recording studio in Lerner that allows music and non-music majors alike to record tracks with the club’s equipment and instruments.
Meanwhile, Film students have faced issues with steep equipment costs and a lack of career prospects in the field. Even fewer film resources are available to non-majors. The Society for the Advancement of Underrepresented Filmmakers and Columbia University Film Productions both seek to help student filmmakers with finding equipment, funding, and connections with other filmmakers who can collaborate on projects.