Rural universities fail to attract big stars for festivals

Across South Korea, universities are hosting their spring festivals, allowing students to drink and party on campus, often to live performances by K-pop artists, which are considered the highlight of the annual events. The shows are funded through the school budget and can cost tens of millions of won per singer or band depending on their popularity – generally too much for rural universities to afford, which is where the discrepancy between them and universities in Seoul arises, write Nam Yoon-seo and Lee Sung-eun for Korea JoongAng Daily.

For years, universities outside the Seoul metropolitan area of Seoul, Incheon and Gyeonggi have been struggling with sharp declines in student applications amid the country’s dipping fertility rate, leading to shrinking revenues.

But even when rural universities are willing to go beyond their budgets to hire A-list celebrities, some say they’re still finding it hard to close deals because the singers don’t want to travel long distances unless they’re paid double or triple their appearance fee.
Full report on the Korea JoongAng Daily site