UCI’s tight budget deficit has caused drastic changes in the administration’s approach to maintaining the campus.
As students of this great campus who have now conceded to eating Triskets for every meal, we must recognize the conscious efforts that the school is making to stretch the university budget and indirectly help us lower our tuition.
One: The Bren.
The Bren is a new color. Did you notice? It used to be white and blue (I think), and now it’s yellow and blue (I think).
Two: The tiled anteater.
Peter is paved on Ring Road right in front of Langson library. It’s a mosaic, a real piece of art. Real art, ladies and gentlemen, cost real cash. But it’s worth it right? Because everytime you’re looking at your feet thinking about how you can’t afford your textbooks, you can go, ‘Oh man! Different colored tiles.’
Three: The art department service parking lot.
Now, students may not have efficient and convenient parking, but damn, when the facilities management gentlemen need to plant plants in the obscure parts of campus, we spare no expense.
The new art department service lot is located at the end of the service road running between the art department and Mesa court. The little lot is paved neatly with about six or seven parking spots and trimmed immaculantly with bushes of yellow flowers. However, the piece de resistance would be the little service signs. On top of informing students about their inability to experience this beautiful lot, it has a little anteater printed on it! Whoo-hoo!
Four: The absence of leaves.
It’s fall. Fall in San Jose (my beautiful hometown) consists of golden leaves framing the streets. They make fall beautiful and then decompose.
Notice the suspicious lack of leaves here on campus. A couple of years back, the campus removed half a dozen large Eucalyptus trees from the section Ring Road in front of the main library. The trees were shedding leaves and giant pods. The accelerating speed of the pods crashing down from about 20 feet in height was pure entertainment. It made walking amusing, because now you were dodging kamakazi planes on your way to class. They added character, a branding sign that you were on the UCI campus.
Curiously, UCI has systematically removed any tree that sheds leaves. That, or there’s two dozen facilities’ workers standing underneath trees with a giant tarp catching the leaves before they hit the ground.
Five: The future Student Center.
I once bought a pair of $200 shoes, only to realize that I was $50 short on rent. At this point I needed to reevaluate the worth of my shoes.
We voted on the student center expansion before realizing our budget deficit. It’s time we reevaluated its value.
It is applaudable that administration is trying to maintain the campus immaculant, but at what costs? And in the end, aren’t faults defining characteristics too?
Jenny Wang is a fifth-year political science and studio art major.