Billboard pokes fun at UPD

Art, historically, has had a multitude of purposes, one being to create a statement that rocks the very core of the community it was born from. This year, graphic design students took a bold step to make a billboard mocking the University Police Department by making a parody of a Krispy Kreme doughnuts ad. The ad, displayed outside of the Art Department Building, reads “University Police Department: Enjoying doughnuts & coffee since 1937 while ticketing you for 31 mph. Appeal your ticket!”

“I think the whole idea was to make a controversial statement to make it stand out,” senior Nikki Dwigans, advertising graphics major said. “We had a lot of students walking by when we were working on it and give us thumbs up. I think it’s something that many people feel strongly about and they’ve run into these situations with cops on campus.”

The billboard is a project for the Graphic Design IV class. The purpose of the project is to take an existing ad and alter the wording to include an issue that the students feel strongly about. A group of nine students must come up with their own ideas and vote on which one will be the subject of the billboard. The student who created the idea for the billboard was senior art major Amy Drouilliard.

Past projects have addressed a multitude of issues, from campus parking problems to spirituality.

“I believe this project speaks to a lot of students because it’s geared towards our generation,” Dwigans said.

The billboard itself has proved itself to be a much more difficult project than churning out controversial ideas, involving many all-nighters to meet the project’s deadline.

“We were staying out late and working all night on it,” senior Meredith Nudo, graphics major said. “When the hurricane hit, it put a significant dent [in the progress of the project]. I personally had to miss a few classes and a couple of organization meetings to get work done.”

So far, the students who worked on the project have experienced only positive feedback from the community, with little to no repercussions from the police department.

“We weren’t trying to be malicious or anything,” Nudo said. “I’ve personally never had a problem with the police. Here’s a funny story, one of the first nights we had the billboard up, a UPD officer who was at a nearby party came up to the sign and laughed. He said ‘I don’t drink that much coffee.’ What little reaction we’ve had has been positive.”

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