The launch of the Ethnic Studies program, UP’s search for its 21st President and the UP’s first semi-normal semester in over a year in a half

The Fall 2021 semester in review

By William Seekamp | December 11, 2021 7:59pm
Pilots returned to The Bluff in August.
Media Credit: Lisa Erenstein / The Beacon

In August, Pilots returned to The Bluff for the first mostly-normal semester since Fall 2019. There was a freshman orientation and, for the first time ever, a sophomore one too. 

UP has filled several vacancies, and provided $1,000 bonuses to staff making less than $75,000 a year, however some staff members decided it was time to move on.

After years of planning, the Ethnic Studies program launched with Dr. Amy Abugo Ongiri at its head.

UP Campus Program Board hosted their first dance since February 2020. The theme was “Into the Jungle.”

Tom Arndorfer, the Chair of the Board of Regents, anticipates that UP’s next president will be named in April. AGB Search was chosen by UP’s presidential search committee as the executive recruitment consultants to manage the search. They are currently “Organizing the Search,” the first of six phases.

The Beacon checked in with students studying abroad in Europe amids the evolving situation with the omicron COVID-19 variant that may be more infectious than other variants

There were ​​56 COVID-19 cases reported this semester and 96.7 percent – 4,135 out of 4,276 – of the community are vaccinated, as of Dec. 8.

Next semester, more than 95% of classes will be in-person, an increase from 82% this semester. 

The Beacon wishes you safe travels and a healthy and happy winter break. We look forward to seeing you back on campus in January. 

William Seekamp is the News and Managing Editor of The Beacon. He can be reached at