MUSIC Matters’ year-end SpringFest event began as an annual celebration capped by a concert featuring a headlining artist. At its inception, the money it raised would go to a charity, set to change each year.

After two years, the student organization is expanding its vision. In November, the group unveiled its $50,000-endowed “Big Thinkers” scholarship, the first student-funded endeavor of its kind at the University.

Now, MUSIC Matters is revamping SpringFest to resemble South by Southwest, a nine-day spring festival in Austin, Texas that is a hub for music, film and technology.

SpringFest will occur on either April 10 or 17, LSA senior Phillip Schermer, president of MUSIC Matters, said.

On Sunday, leaders from MUSIC Matters pitched SpringFest’s new structure to student organizations potentially interested in being involved in its set up.

“At the end of the day, MUSIC Matters is coordinating this event, but it’s really supposed to be by the community and for the community,” Schermer said.

The new SpringFest may expand to envelop a large portion of Central Campus. The tentative structure features what Schermer calls the “globe,” an open area and stage featuring food and speakers throughout the day.

Sprouting from the globe will be spaces organized by five themes: arts, identity, innovation, social justice and sustainability. Organizations will display their year’s work within the corresponding theme.

Schermer said he wants the event to showcase students’ accomplishments.

To provide examples of what the typical organization will do to exhibit its work, SpringFest’s anchor groups — optiMize, MPowered, Michigan Sports Business Conference, the National Pan-Hellenic Council and Ask Big Questions — presented their plans.

Representatives from optiMize, a student organization centered on entrepreneurial social service, expressed their hope to partner with student artists and create artistic social commentary relating to the group’s work.

Students from MPowered said they want to host professionals to judge student startups and integrate them into the marketplace.

Kinesiology senior Jared Hunter, president of Michigan’s National Pan-Hellenic Council, said SpringFest could facilitate a stepping contest between fraternities and sororities judged by administrators. Each of the NPHC’s organizations has an auxiliary youth chapter, allowing area high school students to attend SpringFest.

This concept aligns with MUSIC Matter’s partnership with the Office of Admissions, which sees SpringFest as an opportunity to showcase the University. Business junior Nick Moeller, chair of the SpringFest Committee for MUSIC Matters, said the University’s and MUSIC Matter’s goals are aligned.

“A big part of what we stand for as an organization is bringing Michigan students together,” he said. “SpringFest is something that you don’t see on other campuses, and the idea (was) that the University might be able to promote that as, ‘Look at what you can do at the University of Michigan. If you’re a part of any organization from any background, you can come be celebrated and we can showcase the work you can do.’”

LSA senior JoHanna Rothseid, president of Ask Big Questions, hopes her organization will kindle this kind of intermingling. The organization intends to place whiteboards between each section of student organizations at SpringFest — where facilitators can foster conversation and written responses related to the specific section’s theme.

“We spend so much time going to this University and getting so involved and invested in our extracurriculars,” Rothseid said, adding that the whiteboards would allow space for conversation that addresses the “awesome and incredible things” students are doing across numerous fields.

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