Union Program Council to implement hybrid events as campus reopens

Although stay at home orders have been lifted, limited operations continue at Kansas State (Dalton Wainscott | Collegian Media Group)

The Union Program Council cancelled several big events last spring, but plan to reschedule them for the upcoming fall semester. As campus reopens, UPC plans to be adaptable and provide events both in person and virtually.

Beth Bailey, assistant director of programs, said UPC events cancelled last spring include a hypnotist, a comedian, two speakers and a musician. The events will now be offered virtually.

As for the fall events that were already in the works, UPC adopted a hybrid plan in an effort to still hold the events in some form.

“What I mean by hybrid is that some events will be in person and some will be virtual,” Bailey said. “The films, for instance, will be in person, but the attendance numbers will be vastly reduced.”

UPC doesn’t currently have access to new movie releases, so the group will show a handful of movies that they initially planned to show last spring. Those movies include “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” and “Parasite”. The showings are cosponsored with the Asian American Student Union.

UPC also plans to show “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” outdoors with limited attendance and social distancing measures.

The UPC has planned other events for the first six-to-eight weeks of the school year, but haven’t announced the schedule yet as it may be adjusted.

Students part of UPC primarily make decisions about events. However, Bailey said that while the university has been closed, advisors have been executing details for early fall events.

“During the transition retreat in the spring, we discussed how to approach the fall programming and came up with a ‘Plan A’ — in-person events — and ‘Plan B,’ virtual events,” Bailey said. “So we could pivot more readily, if necessary. Now that we have safety protocols for in-person events, we are making sure that we are prepped and ready to be as safe as possible.”

With everything in mind, the UPC maintains a goal of bringing diverse, quality events to students and the entire campus community. Bailey said they want their events to be engaging, inclusive and safe.