It’s been a hell of a ride for the class of 2021. As a graduating senior, I never anticipated the events of the last year. Somewhere in the wake of online school and commencement, and powering our way through final projects and capstones, it’s easy to forget just how far things have come since a class of awkward 18 year olds arrived on the Bluff four years ago, bursting with nerves and excitement and having truly no idea what was coming. Enjoy a walk down memory lane from a sad, overjoyed and slightly bitter graduating senior. Class of 2021 - we got through this much. We have much, much more ahead.
University president Fr. Mark Poorman announced today that he will be resigning from his position at the end of June. He has been the University’s president since 2014. Father Jim M. Lies will be serving as interim University President starting July 1.
Sandy Chung, Title IX Coordinator and Vice President for Human Resources, will leave the University of Portland in January. Chung, whose July 1 Beacon op-ed on "racism, sexism and tokenism" within the administration sparked the Board of Regents to launch an investigation, has worked at UP for five years. That investigation is still ongoing.
More than 300,000 acres are burning due to rapidly spreading wildfires across the state of Oregon as of Wednesday, forcing thousands of residents to evacuate their homes and killing at least two people. Nine counties have been evacuated so far, according to Statesman Journal. Oregon is not alone; unprecedented numbers of wildfires are burning across California and Washington.
High wind and critical fire warnings have been issued in Northern Oregon and Southern Washington from 5 p.m. Monday until 1 p.m. Tuesday. Members of the UP community located in these areas should be aware of “potentially historic” wind speeds, with gusts ranging 40-55 mph according to the National Weather Service (NWS) Storm Prediction Center.
The visible glue of the University of Portland community has dissolved. For at least the fall semester, the university that we all knew has lost its physical roots, and the things that constitute a University of Portland student - the University Park residence or dorm pride, dark circles from long hours in the library and the clutched Franz coffee cup - are no longer as visible. Now, we rely on other, less obvious markers.
University President Fr. Mark Poorman announced in an email Thursday night that "nearly all classes" in University of Portland’s fall semester will be exclusively online, citing the rise in COVID-19 infections in Oregon and around the country as the cause. The email also mentioned Oregon Governor Kate Brown’s announcement of new coronavirus-related metrics for reopening schools, which have led to school districts to delay in-person instruction.
Sandy Chung, Vice President for Human Resources and Title IX Coordinator, has come forward as the anonymous author of the opinion submission, “Racism, Sexism, Tokenism: My Experiences as a Woman of Color at University of Portland” published on July 1. Chung disclosed her identity in an email sent to faculty and staff today.