Hall students confused about SOPAC

A group of five Seton Hall business students are working in connection with the South Orange Performing Arts Center, conducting a marketing survey to try and better understand students’ opinions of the center.

So far, junior Nicolette Romeo, a member of the group, said survey responses have indicated confusion over what SOPAC is and what services it offers.

“The students (who have taken the survey) seemed to agree that they didn’t know much about SOPAC and its student initiatives, like the student-rush tickets, which allow students to purchase cheaper performance tickets (two hours prior to a show),” Romeo said.

Junior Tom Hickey, who is also a member of the group, said the project is for a marketing class.

“We basically have to embark on a project for a not-for-profit organization to help them improve their business,” Hickey said.

Romeo said another student in the group works for SOPAC, which helped them to choose that organization for their project.

“We chose to create a survey for the Seton Hall community that would help SOPAC better understand the demographics of our students,” Hickey said, adding that the center seats 415. “SOPAC could sell out the show with less than 10 percent of our population, but students have to be interested in the shows.”

Romeo added that there are many potential benefits for students who decide to take the survey as well.

“I feel like people are very unaware of what SOPAC has to offer, and the survey can help SOPAC to better connect with the students at Seton Hall,” Romeo said.

Hickey said the results from the survey could influence SOPAC’s choice of programming in upcoming seasons.

“If it turns out lots of people like pop-punk music, SOPAC would likely try and get that type of artist to perform in their venue,” Hickey said.

According to Romeo, the group worked in connection with SOPAC’s director of Marketing and Communications, Scott Sullivan, to help fine-tune the questions.

“I gave our original questions out to my sorority as a sort of pre-test, and then we sent the questions to (Sullivan) and he gave us some suggestions, like making questions more open-ended,” Romeo said.

Sullivan said he was happy to work with the students when he found out about their project.

“It’ll be good to hear how we’re doing from the students’ perspective,” Sullivan said, adding that at SOPAC they planned to use the data and survey responses when they work on planning future programs.

The survey, which was released via Broadcast email on Tuesday, includes questions about students’ academic lives such as whether they are a commuter or resident and what college they are a member of.

It also asks their knowledge about SOPAC and what types of entertainment and genres of music they enjoy.

Romeo said the group will be accepting survey responses from the community until May 9.

Both Hickey and Romeo agreed that the confusion about SOPAC was the primary reason for doing the study.

They said after collecting the results of the survey, they will create a report and presentation for SOPAC to use to help improve its programming and marketing for the Seton Hall community.

In addition, students who take the survey and login with their email address are entered to win six movie tickets to the Clearview Cinemas in SOPAC.

Caitlin Carroll can be reached at caitlin.carroll@student.shu.edu.

Author: Staff Writer

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