By Gateway Staff
The end is near.
We don’t mean that in a Mayan-calendar-conspiracy-theory kind of way. We mean that the 2010-11 school year is nearly over. Done. Fin. Kaput. And oh, what a year it has been.
(Cue Davie Bowie’s “Changes.”)
First, there’s the opening of Mammel Hall, a building so advanced it looks straight out of a Sci-Fi flick – or SyFy, if that’s what you prefer. The 120,000-square-foot campus sits just south of the Peter Kiewit Institute on UNO’s Pacific Street Campus – an impressive section of UNO that has made some of us here at the Gateway contemplate changing our majors to business or information technology. But most of us are terrible at math.
Anyone who’s heard anything about Mammel Hall knows it’s the first LEED-certified building on campus, meaning the building is super-sustainable and very efficient. It’s also completely paperless. In short, it’s quite “green.” Not a light green or even a grass green, but a dark, rich forest green. Score one for UNO!
Then came the announcement of August commencement’s elimination and the plans to move the ceremony from the Civic Auditorium to campus. This news didn’t go over so well in our newsroom, especially since a few of us, including the paper’s editor, were planning on graduating in August.
We understand budget cuts are necessary during this time of economic downturn. We’re all college students. We know what it’s like to try to get by on very little. But we also believe that graduation is the hallmark event of this institution, one that will live on forever in our memories as we replay crossing the stage and receiving our degrees over in our minds.
When it comes down to it, this University isn’t about fraternities or sororities or even athletics. It’s about obtaining an education and celebrating all the hard work we did along the way. We deserve a nice ceremony, and it’ll be hard to bring the Civic Auditorium’s splendor to campus.
Finally, the powers that be dropped a huge bomb on us in March. We learned we were moving to the Division I Summit League and that the football and wrestling programs were being eliminated.
As journalists and editors, we appreciated the opportunity to cover such imposing and controversial news. As students, we were heartbroken to learn we’d lose our football team and our beloved wrestling champions. Above all, we’re sad to see the athletes of these programs – our fellow classmates – mourn the loss of a sport they’ve devoted their lives to.
Even now, the situation is too new and the cloud of dust surrounding this proverbial bomb has yet to clear. We’re not sure what life without a football or wrestling team will be like. We don’t know what commencement for future graduates will feel like. And we can only imagine what other changes will take place as students sit in their Mammel Hall classrooms 25 and 50 years from now. But our generation is masterful in the art of change. We will continue to do what we do best: find new ways to adjust and prevail.
Thanks for another incredible year.
The Gateway Staff