August 1, 2014

Scrolling Headlines:

UMass student struck and killed by vehicle Thursday night -

Friday, August 1, 2014

UMass receives anonymous $10.3 million gift -

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

UMass Football summer coverage 2014 -

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Chiarelli: Sam Koch’s impact evident in those who knew him best -

Monday, July 21, 2014

Longtime UMass men’s soccer coach Sam Koch dies after two-year battle with sinus cancer -

Monday, July 21, 2014

Southwest evacuated after gas leak -

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

UMass Rowing finishes NCAA Championships, ends year ranked No. 21 in the nation -

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Two UMass basketball alums to compete for a lofty prize in The Basketball Tournament -

Friday, May 23, 2014

Commencement Photos 2014 -

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Two arrested in relation to series of vandalism -

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Students push for relocation of the Center for Counseling and Psychological Health -

Monday, May 12, 2014

Video: No. 14 UMass WLAX ends season in loss to Loyola (MD) -

Saturday, May 10, 2014

No. 14 UMass women’s lacrosse season ends in loss to Loyola (MD) -

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Sixth inning rally propels UMass past Dayton 7-2 -

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

McMahon, Ferris and McGovern: Not your usual transfer story -

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Women’s lacrosse defeats Richmond 10-6 to win sixth straight A-10 Championship -

Sunday, May 4, 2014

No. 13 UMass women’s lacrosse knocks off Duquesne 16-3 to reach Atlantic 10 finals -

Friday, May 2, 2014

UMass one of 55 schools currently facing investigation over handling of sexual assault cases -

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Two thefts reported at library -

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Senior Columns 2013-2014 -

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Students gather in Southwest after Obama’s re-election announced

Maria Uminski/Collegian

Maria Uminski/Collegian

About 500 students gathered in the Southwest Residential Area as President Barack Obama’s re-election was called by media outlets nationwide.

The gathering began as a tame celebration. However, students’ behaviors and actions quickly grew rowdier over a half hour period before dwindling down.

The University of Massachusetts Police Department did not break up the gathering. Earlier in the day, a UMPD official said the department wasn’t going to assign additional to officers to Southwest and had not heard of a potential gathering.

Just before midnight, students rushed out of residential halls in Southwest, flooding the concourse outside Berkshire Dining Commons.

At the start of the gathering, students chanted patriotic cheers such as the typical  “USA”  and the more timely “Four more years” while throwing rolls of toilet paper back and forth in front of John Quincy Adams Tower. Nearby trees were swathed in toilet paper and the ground was littered with it.

Later on, some students set fire to the toilet paper rolls, as small fires began on the ground and in a spindly tree just outside of JQA. The fires went out on their own.

Jackson Schroeder, an undeclared major, said he felt as though most people did not know what to expect and were waiting for indications from the crowd.

“Everyone is gathering because everyone else is gathering,” he said.

By 12:15 a.m., a window was shattered on the fourth floor of JQA’s western façade, and showered glass onto the crowd, which temporarily dispersed only to reconvene a few minutes later.

UMass students gather in Southwest after Obama victory from Daily Collegian on Vimeo.

Three female students rushed into JQA together after being struck by broken shards of glass. One woman was bleeding from a small cut in her arm and joked that the group “bled for Obama.” All three of the students refused to give their names, instead asking to be quoted anonymously.

Soon after the window shattered, the spirit of the gathering shifted as patriotic chants dissolved into cruder chants of a sexual nature as three young women in a JQA dormitory on the third floor began flashing the crowds their bras.

Students then briefly broke out into a spontaneous dance party filling the half-moon circle of open space within the crowd’s center.

The low and piercing drones of sound horns speckled the night’s cheers and jeers from the crowd. While students lifted other students to offer them better views of the spectacle, iPhones and cameras were also thrust into the air by students.

With the exception of the throwing of toilet paper fastballs at random crowd members, students did not appear to have many physical altercations. However, one student running into JQA with a broken half of a skateboard said that “someone had hit someone over the head” with the skateboard, but refused to comment further or give his name.

Several students were surprised by the tone of the gathering.

“I didn’t think it would be like this. It’s a little more destructive than I thought,” said Jake Harrison, an undeclared freshman who was wearing an American flag as a cape at the event. “It was happy at first. It kind of turned destructive.”

Other students, such as a freshman political science major Seth Perkins, who had originally gone outside to celebrate Obama’s re-election, expressed similar confusion over the deterioration of the celebration.

“I’m overjoyed and very happy Obama won,” Perkins said. “I’m very confused why (his win) has translated into people throwing things.”

However, a stray whistle, that many students mistakenly believed to be UMPD, caused most of the remaining students to return to their dorms, leaving behind a small group of approximately 20 people.

At the gathering neared its end, Ashley Olmeda, an environmental science and policy major at Smith College, said she was not surprised that police did not break up the celebration.

“Nobody’s doing anything wrong, everybody’s just excited that Obama won the election, everybody’s hyped up,” she said.  “There’s really no reason for police to be out here unless a fight really starts to break out, and like we said, it’s not a riot, it’s more of a celebration.”

Patrick Hoff contributed to this report.

Alyssa Creamer can be reached at acreamer@student.umass.edu. Katie Landeck can be reached at klandeck@student.umass.edu.

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