Canceled Fountain Run replaced by Senior Run

first_imgThe cancellation of USC’s end-of-the-year Fountain Run tradition led to the creation of multiple alternatives for seniors to celebrate their impending graduation.For nearly a decade, students participated in the unofficial Fountain Run tradition which was not sanctioned by the university. On the evening of the last Thursday of spring semester classes, graduating seniors would run through every fountain on campus.The Fountain Run was canceled this year, however, because according to university administrators, it had become too dangerous for students and too damaging to campus property. Assistant Provost for Student Affairs Monique Allard said that in the past five years, there have been 73 medical calls and 25 ambulance rides during the Fountain Run, most of which were caused by alcohol-related incidents. Last year’s campus destruction from the Fountain Run included biohazardous materials in the fountains, broken fixtures and significant damage to the Youth Triumphant statue  in total, almost $50,000 in property damages.Some students were disappointed by the cancellation. Nicole Daviau, a rising senior majoring in business administration, was upset by the cancellation of the Fountain Run because she wanted to celebrate the college careers of her graduating friends.“It seems unfair. When the seniors leave, the Fountain Run is often what they say is the greatest thing they did at USC, even if they’ve studied abroad or did something really cool throughout their years here,” Daviau said. “I feel like I was being robbed of an experience.”As an alternative, the administration Student Affairs hosted the Senior Run, on April 30.“[T]his year, USC Student Affairs launched an educational campaign informing students of the dangers and destruction that this unsanctioned event causes,” Allard wrote in an email to the Daily Trojan. “Our approach was to inform students about the facts while simultaneously supporting student leaders in creating a new, fully sanctioned that was termed the ‘Senior Run.’”The event, which was led by Undergraduate Student Government, Interfraternity Council, Panhellenic Council and Residential Student Government, was a festival that included inflatables, music, food trucks and giveaways.Approximately 1,500 students picked up wristbands, which were required to attend the Senior Run. Because of the large attendance, Allard said she was hopeful that the event grows in years to come.“We are looking to the campus’ student leaders to continue to invest their time and energy in coordinating this as a new tradition,” Allard wrote. “USC Student Affairs believes that celebrating the culmination of years of students’ hard work is important. Even more important is celebrating while keeping our community safe.”Students also attempted to organize another alternative to the Fountain Run — an Undie Run. Also held on April 30, the Undie Run event was created on Facebook as a response to the Fountain Run’s cancellation. The Facebook page instructed attendees to meet at Tommy Trojan at 10:30 p.m. dressed in undergarments. Daviau felt it could be a good alternative to the Fountain Run.“As a commuter and transfer student, it can be hard to find a sense of community on campus and feel really connected to the Trojan Family … But something that comes up for most people is that the Fountain Run gives them that sense of community,” she said. “The Undie Run could have replaced what was taken away.”When the night of the run arrived, however, the student-organized event was too uncoordinated to take off.“When people got there, [they] set off running in opposite directions because there was no map or plan on where to go,” Daviau said. “There was not enough information to the students, so at the given time, some people ran forward about 10 feet and then stopped and ran back because they were confused.”Some people congregated around the meeting area, a few of which were also attending the Senior Run. When the running did not happen, people eventually left.“There was an underlying sadness during the Undie Run because there was that lack of cohesion. I really hope in the upcoming years that we come up with something to celebrate our years here,” Daviau said.last_img

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