It’s been a year to remember. It started with a bunch of hurricanes. Historic moments, for both the U.S. and UM, followed, culminating in the 2004 presidential election. Second semester began amid a tragedy that hit the world; tsunami relief efforts are still ongoing today. UM faced its own tragedy, as the community felt the loss of one of its own and banded together for the future safety of students. Along the way, the University has experienced everything from groundbreaking events and pride to controversy and loss, resulting in an unforgettable year.
The Presidential Debate ENERGIZES CAMPUS
UM was placed in the national spotlight when President George W. Bush and Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) came to campus for the first presidential debates of the 2004 election, held at the Convocation Center. Amid the celebrity sightings, media blitz, tight security and parking fiascos, students experienced history in the making. When Election Day finally came around, students made sure that their vote would count, some waiting in lines for hours to place their ballot.
UM was taken by surprise as two of its long-standing fraternities, Pi Kappa Alpha and Lambda Chi Alpha, were suspended within two weeks of each other. The allegations ranged from alleged sexual battery to violations of the University Code of Conduct. The Pike investigation recently came to a close, while Lambda Chi’s is ongoing.
Student death sparkS COMMUNITY ACTION
Freshman Ashley Kelly died when she was hit by a car at a busy U.S. 1 intersection, causing the UM community to question the safety of its pedestrians. Students held vigils in memory of Kelly and are petitioning for the construction of a pedestrian overpass to ensure that the tragedy doesn’t happen again.
University VillagE BReAKS GROUND
After being in the works for over a decade, University Village was finally approved. UM’s first housing development on campus in 35 years broke ground on March 23, 2005, and is scheduled for 2006 completion.
Our namesake for a
Hurricanes Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne put the campus in a state of alert as students stocked up on everything from bottled water to canned food and went in search of a full tank of gas. Lockdown became a familiar state of affairs; students crammed into the Convocation Center and dorms, while others headed home. Luckily, UM and the city of Miami were mostly spared.
Natural disaster affects UM community
As tsunamis hit the coasts of Africa and Asia on the other side of the world, students felt the effects at the University and immediately took action to help. Nearly every organization on campus participated in fundraising relief efforts, showing the heart of the UM community.
Stomach virus outbreak
More than 200 students reported symptoms related to Norovirus the day before winter break, causing many to reschedule travel plans and miss finals. The resulting investigation cleared the Chartwells cafeterias as the source of the outbreak.
The death of the Pope
A religious leader, the only Pope that most students ever knew, passed away in April. As the black smoke rose from the Vatican, students attended vigils and paid their respects to Pope John Paul II.
Spiritual leader visits UM
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, a spiritual leader and world visionary for peace, inspired the University when he spoke on “A Human Approach to World Peace” to a packed crowd at the Convocation Center.
Administrative overhaul FOR NEXT YEAR
The University is welcoming many new faces to campus this fall. Dr. Michael R. Halleran will be the new dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and Dr. Sam Grogg will take over as dean of the School of Communication. The new provost announcement of the replacement of Dr. Luis Glaser is expected soon, while the search for a new dean of the medical school is under way.