El Camino College Union

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A look back at The Union’s top stories of 2014

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2014 at El Camino started with an Anthrax scare in the Administration Building, with some car crashes rounding out the middle few months and it ended with an alleged threat to several members of the EC community.

Below are the stories most read, commented on, shared or favorited. The link in each entry leads to the full story.

Jan. 9
The Administration Building was evacuated after someone received a suspicious letter and a note indicating powder that was enclosed was Anthrax. L.A. County Hazardous Material Division, L.A. Sheriff’s Department, and FBI responded to the scene.

Feb. 13

Photo credit: John Fordiani

Photo credit: John Fordiani

Students got their first look at the recently demolished Murdock Stadium when the spring semester began. Demolition started in December 2013 after years of delay. At the time, the construction manager said he plans the new stadium will be completed by December 2015.

March 6

Photo credit: Brian Krause

Photo credit: Brian Krause

In February, Student Services Specialist Dave Snowden died as a result of cardiac arrest. Director of Admissions Bill Mulrooney worked with Snowden. Mulrooney said Snowden “wore his heart on his sleeve. His death was unexpected, and it shocked everybody. It hurt us to the core.”

March 16

Photo credit: John Fordiani

Photo credit: John Fordiani

In March, faculty members began protesting for salary increases. Instructors walked around campus with signs for several days. Signs with “5%,” a symbolic representation of the raise instructors were asking for, remained on office windows throughout campus for months after the protests began.

March 27

Photo credit: John Fordiani

Photo credit: John Fordiani

A student lost control of his car, causing it to plunge down an embankment onto Redondo Beach Boulevard. The man walked away without a scratch, an ECPD officer said.

April 16
The men’s volleyball team won its first ever conference title after defeating L.A. Trade Tech at a home game.

Aug. 27
EC swim instructor Traci Granger broke international swim records during the summer, where she competed against 6,000 swimmers from 76 countries. Granger is ranked as one of the fastest swimmers in her age bracket around the world.

Sept. 9

Photo credit: John Fordiani

Photo credit: John Fordiani

A man on a bike was killed near EC after he was struck by a car. The driver of the vehicle said the sun blocked his view and he couldn’t see the bicyclist.

Sept. 17

Photo credit: John Fordiani

Photo credit: John Fordiani

Trustee Ken Brown accepted the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and followed through with it near the pool. Dean of Athletics and Health Sciences Rory Natividad, Athletic Director Randy Totorp, football coach John Featherstone and football players were in attendance to watch Brown.

Sept. 24
Unauthorized fliers asking for volunteers for a local marijuana study were posted in the Humanities Building. Michelle Arthur, the acting director of student development who authorizes all fliers, didn’t know they were there until she received a call about them.

Oct. 1

Photo credit: John Fordiani

Photo credit: John Fordiani

A driver was involved in a single vehicle crash near EC. The driver collided with a light pole and the vehicle caught on fire.

Oct. 9

Photo credit: El Camino Police Department

Photo credit: El Camino Police Department

An EC student is accused of threatening an instructor, administrators, parents and students. He allegedly threatened to create a “massacre” on the Library Lawn, similar to the Santa Barbara shooting earlier this year, according to a temporary restraining order filed in October.

Nov. 18

Photo credit: Gilberto Castro

Photo credit: Gilberto Castro

The men’s soccer team won the South Coast Conference title for the first time since 1991 after a tied game against Cerritos College.

Nov. 24
Longtime history professor Maria Brown died from complications of cardiac arrest. Brown, who was set to retire after this semester, marking her 40th year at EC, was a much beloved professor. A memorial will take place for Brown during next year’s Black History Month events, something she was involved with.

Dec. 3
In the women’s volleyball team’s last game of the season, they had their 16-game winning streak snapped by No. 1 Irvine Valley College. The week before, the Warriors knocked No. 5 Golden West Rustlers out of the playoffs.

Dec. 4

Photo credit: John Fordiani

Photo credit: John Fordiani

English professor Cynthia Somin called for an El Camino Police Department escort one evening as she was leaving work. Somin, who said she has difficulty walking, said the dispatcher told her they couldn’t send anyone to help because it was raining. However, Somin said when she called, it wasn’t raining.

Dec. 4

Photo credit: John Fordiani

Photo credit: John Fordiani

According to a Crime Alert sent by the El Camino Police Department, a female student reported she was “coerced into engaging in oral copulation” in a Communications Building restroom by a man she had met with on campus in October. Days later, according to another Crime Alert, the woman retracted her statement, “admitting that the crime did not occur as she initially stated.”

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A look back at The Union’s top stories of 2014