Year in Review
Published: Saturday, May 23, 2009
Updated: Saturday, August 1, 2009 23:08
Sept. 16: A slew of violent crimes including approximately five armed robberies of university students takes place in both on and off-campus areas surrounding the university. Incidents take place in locations including university parking lot 17 on the corner of Cleveland Avenue and North College Avenue, Haines Street, Winslow Road, the Newark Shopping Center and the Foxcroft Apartments.
Oct. 20: Political Awareness Week begins, capping off a month of political activity on campus in preparation for the November election. Senior Mike D'Armi leaves the university to become a field organizer for President Obama in Miami-Dade County in Southern Florida and Obama's campaign opens an office on Elkton Road.
Oct. 31: Vice presidential nominee Joe Biden addresses thousands of university students and residents in a rally on the North Green, primarily encouraging students and community members to campaign in Pennsylvania, a notorious battleground state. Members of the College Republicans also hold their own counter-rally in protest of Biden on Main Street and the North Green.
Nov. 4: Election Central is held in the Trabant Multipurpose Rooms giving students the opportunity to watch the results, participate in live polling and watch expert lectures. Members of the College Democrats go to Philadelphia to campaign for Barack Obama. After Obama's victory, dozens of students parade around campus. Jack Markell is elected governor. Nov. 8: Freshman Brett Griffin is pronounced dead after an off-campus party at 28 Annabelle Street, a residence occupied by members of the Sigma Alpha Mu fraternity. Griffin, a pledge of Sigma Alpha Mu, was found in cardiac arrest and was not breathing when an ambulance arrived to the scene, according to the Newark Police Department. He was pronounced dead upon arrival at Christiana Hospital. An overdose of alcohol was investigated as a preliminary cause of death.
Dec. 9: Tax records reveal university President Patrick Harker received $450,000 from the university the year prior to taking office. According to Howard Cosgrove, chairman of the Board of Trustees, the money was received from a private foundation to reimburse expenses Harker may have incurred from leaving the University of Pennsylvania as dean.
Dec. 19: The Newark Chrysler plant shuts down after more than 50 years in Newark. The university expresses interest in buying the site.
Jan. 8: President Patrick Harker sends an e-mail message to members of the university community announcing a number of changes at the university based on the recession, including a 10 percent reduction in his salary.
Jan 18: On their way to Washington, D.C., for the inauguration, President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden quickly address thousands of onlookers in Tubman-Garrett Riverfront Park, across from the Wilmington Train Station.
Jan. 20: President Patrick Harker serves as master of ceremonies as Gov. Jack Markell and Lt. Gov. Matt Denn are sworn into office at the university's Mitchell Hall at midnight. Later, dozens of university students join the crowds of people in Washington, D.C. to witness Obama's inauguration. The University of Delaware Marching Band marches in the inaugural parade.
Feb. 23: Public safety announces it will eliminate vehicle escorts effective March 15 and will provide only walking and biking escorts instead. Changes were made in the program in an attempt to better utilize the bus system and to decrease abuses of the vehicle escort service.
March 9: Provost Dan Rich announces he is stepping down, effective June 30. Tom Apple, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, is announced as Rich's successor. Apple was previously a candidate for provost at three other universities.
March 24: An investigation by The Review finds many residents of Studio Green apartments unhappy with rent increases and pest problems. The apartment complex later takes steps to rectify the situation.
March 23: Athletic Director Edgar Johnson announced he is stepping down from the position and returning to teaching. The university later hired Bernard Muir, formerly of Georgetown University, to replace Johnson.
March 25: Five Lambda Chi Alpha members rescue 60-year-old June Griffith after she drives her car onto the train tracks near the Deer Park Tavern. The students later hold a fundraiser to fix a donated car for Griffith.
March 30: Harker announces that the Blue & Gold Club will close July 1 due to budget cuts. The club first opened in 1971.
April 8: James E. Cooke, Jr., the convicted murderer of then-sophomore Lindsey Bonistall, petitions the state supreme court for a new trial, citing problems with his defense counsel.
April 14: Junior David Tusio is elected president of the Student Government Association. Only 96 students vote in the election.
April 15: CNN anchor Anderson Cooper speaks at the Bob Carpenter Center about his career, the economy and the role of the media.
April 22: Harker announces the Climate Action Plan, which is intended to lower the university's carbon emissions 20 percent by 2020. The plan calls for installing solar panels on the student centers, decreasing the number of cars on campus and making buildings more energy-efficient.
April 23: David Plouffe, Barack Obama's campaign manager, and Steve Schmidt, John McCain's senior adviser, speak at a forum in Clayton Hall. Both attended the university, but left a few credits short of their degree.
April 25: After a major crackdown by Newark Police, Chapelfest is canceled. Police mailed letters to residents of North Chapel Street and their parents warning of the consequences of participating in Chapelfest.
April 28: University officials announce that four students have been diagnosed with probable cases of swine flu. By the end of the week, 20 students are confirmed to have the virus. State health officials examine more than 400 students at a health clinic set up at the Carpenter Sports Building. The university cancels many events, but classes still meet.