The Dalai Lama Visits the U
In June the Dalai Lama made a long-awaited appearance at the U. Thousands of people filed into the Huntsman Center to hear the
Buddhist leader deliver his speech. He spoke of compassion, peace and universal responsibility. The event caused political controversy, as some Utah lawmakers were concerned that meeting with the Dalai Lama would damage relations between the state and China. Nonetheless, Governor Gary Herbert and Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski met with the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, during his visit to Utah.
Students Leading Change (SLC) won this year’s ASUU election by 500 votes. Jack Bender is the president elect, and he, along with the rest of SLC, have major plans for ASUU. Their platform includes reducing student fees, increasing involvement and creating a new face for ASUU.
Halloween Sexual Assault on Campus
On Halloween, a female student was held at gunpoint in the back seat of her car and sexually assaulted by a masked man. The assault happened in broad daylight. Throughout 2016, light has been shed on incidents of sexual assault that have plagued students at the U. The Salt Lake Tribune hosted a discussion about rape culture at the U later that week. Students reacted to the assault by protesting administration’s response to sexual violence on campus.
U Opts Not to Divest From Fossil Fuels
In May the Academic Senate voted on whether or not to divest from fossil fuels. For several years the U has invested in resources to reduce its carbon print on the environment. The vote would make a political statement, as U receives a lot of funding from its investments in fossil fuels. The senate voted to divest, but according to the Salt Lake Tribune, the board of trustees rejected the decision and the U will continue to invest in fossil fuels.
Mitt Romney Denounces Trump in Speech at the U
During the presidential primary elections, Mitt Romney took to the podium at Libby Gardner Hall to denounce Donald Trump as the Republican presidential nominee. Romney reaffirmed that he would not be running in the 2016 election and did not endorse any candidates at the event. In his speech, Romney attacked Trump’s moral character and foreign and economic policies. He argued that Trump’s nomination would result in a Clinton presidency. Trump responded in a speech later that day, calling Romney a “failed candidate.”
Jeremih Brings Females on Stage During Redfest
At this year’s Redfest, headliner Jeremih brought two female students onto the stage and attempted to kiss them, while another woman got on stage and flashed the audience. Jeremih is known for bringing girls onto stages at his concerts, but ASUU stated they had no knowledge of his intentions. Both of the women brought on stage said they were not traumatized by what took place.
Student Protest at Commencement
Students and community members gathered at this year’s commencement to protest and honorary degree given to Lynette Nielsen Gay. Many people were upset about the degree because of her involvement with two hate groups that target the LGBT community. Protesters believed that this decision could lead to further mistreatment of the LGBT community. Gay later resigned from one of the organizations she was associated with.
Jimmy Fallon and the U Hat
Jimmy Fallon wore a U hat after being challenged by Jan Krystkowiak, wife of Utes basketball coach Larry Krystkowiak, to wear the hat if the Utes beat the Duke Blue Devils. Fallon wore the hat during an interview with KSL sports-anchor and BYU fan Mike Headrick. An image of Fallon in the hat posted on the U’s Facebook page garnered more than 4,000 “likes.”
Posters Vandalized with Anti-Islam Messages
In the heat of the presidential primaries, posters in the OSH building advertising an event about Islamophobia and bigotry fueled by the race were defaced with Islamophobic language. Among the phrases was “F— Islam” written in black marker. U police investigated the incident as a hate crime.