The School Year In Review

Welcome to the 2013-2014 UC Irvine year in review: start the stock piano music and get ready to reminisce about all the things we’ve already forgotten.

Fall quarter started off with a bang, or actually a bust. In July of 2013, Janet Napolitano was appointed as the first female UC President, despite her complete lack of experience in higher education. Many students voiced their concerns about her track-record of deportations as Secretary of Homeland Security and governor of Arizona.

UC Students Say NO to NapolitaNO gained traction with about every UC protesting Napolitano’s appointment during her fall tour of the UC system. Even with $5 million in aid committed to undocumented students, NO to NapolitaNO held strong, proving that once someone is elected as the UC President, they will most likely stay the UC President. In between protest chants, the murmured confusions concerning Shocktoberfest began to circulate. Against the real suggestion of the real man himself, Dr. Thomas Parham, ASUCI secured A$AP Rocky and YG for this year’s Shocktoberfest. Under-planned and overfunded, Shocktober was whatever.

However, our famed UCI athletics started fall quarter on the right 7’6” foot. Mamadou Ndiaye signed to UC Irvine men’s basketball and became the stock photo of Anteater athletics and, thanks to the Anteater Express campaign, the only instantly recognizable athlete in the history of UC Irvine sports. In addition to the buzz about Mamadou, men’s soccer beat Cal-State Northridge to win the Big West. Our club sports probably did some cool stuff, but they hadn’t run their referendum yet, so no one knew they existed.

Fall 2013 was an exciting quarter for academics as four UCI professors teamed up to create the eight-week Walking Dead course. The massive open online course attracted over 65,000 participants across the world. The course provided open access to free education and a chance for participants to stimulate a connection between their favorite genres of pop-culture and formal academics. With 60 percent of 12,000 participants becoming bigger fans of Walking Dead, AMC should contract UCI professors to help them advertise.

Winter quarter sauntered in after a welcomed three-week break. UCI students found out, through no formal announcement, that next year’s winter break will be one week shorter due to the conflict of Yom Kippur and move-in days. As a result, fall quarter won’t begin until the first week of October leaving UC students (not talking to you, Berkeley) whining more than usual. UC Regents: taking Endless Summer to a new level.

Despite the efforts of a catchy campaign regarding UCI as the NEWEST SMOKE-FREE CAMPUS, no one stopped smoking in front of Gateway or next to the star-planter in Humanities. The workers went on strike, citing unfair labor practices for intimidating efforts against strikes and demanding better wages. An out of touch UCOP still believes a base pay of $30,000 a year is livable.

Students learned from Joe Biden and the White House Council report on Women and Girls that sexual assault on college campuses is indeed a thing. The CARE office, thrilled about the report, explained they have been saying this for 10 years.

UCI administration began a 6-month Chancellor cleanse, supported by the opening of Nekter Juice Bar in UTC. Our beloved Chancellor Michael V. Drake announced that he accepted a new position at Ohio State University, sneaking around the fact that he will receive about $500,000 more as their chancellor.

Kal Penn came, and most students enjoyed his visit. Winter quarter finally ended.

Spring quarter opened with New Narratives: Conversations with Common. As promised, Common spoke, and prompted by Dr. Parham, freestyled.

The mid-year topic of commencement was more stressed than a second-year bio major. In honor of UCI’s 50th commencement ceremony, administrators decided to create a super ceremony hosting all undergraduate and graduate students together and invited President Barack Obama to speak at the ceremony. Complaints erupted from the 4 percent of students who already printed their graduation announcements detailing their school’s separate ceremonies. Graduating seniors threw tantrums until administrators (read: parents) on the commencement committee created separate school commencement celebrations. With everyone satisfied and Obama accepting UC Irvine’s invitation to speak, students resumed their natural state of apathy.

Election campaigns started and most UCI students found out we have a club sports program, as well as becoming reacquainted with SOAR for the third time. Although there were an (unsurprisingly) low number of applicants for ASUCI executive positions, there were fortunately two presidential candidates. Elections came and went; SOAR was saved and club sports was recognized.

UCI women’s water polo won their fifth Big West Tournament title and finished sixth in the NCAA tournament, further justifying the elimination of swimming from UCI athletics.

Super Fan got banned from UC Irvine’s baseball stadium and our former sports editor was very upset over this.

Janet Mock brought visibility for trans women of color, discussed her autobiography and gave many people hope and life with her mid-spring quarter visit. To many people, life couldn’t get better. And then …

Summerlands replaced Reggaefest as our spring event and outdoor concert. Relient K headlined Summerlands, bringing the newsworthy headline that the Ohio natives still play in front of crowds. And again, UCI was recognized as the number one school younger than 50 in the United States as well as being in the top 4 percent for recycling programs in the nation from the results of RecyleMania.

As of now, we are all looking forward to the end of spring quarter, the start of summer and the exploitation of summer internships. Zot on Anteaters, zot on.

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