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UCLA puts a halt to underwear run, citing safety concerns


Citing safety concerns, UCLA has told students that time has run out for the "Undie Run."

The event, which occurs three times a year, draws thousands of students who run across campus in their underwear.

It began in 2002 as a way for students to have some fun around finals time. But according to a UCLA statement, the last run was marred by fights, vandalism and alcohol-related problems that prompted police and emergency crews to get involved.  

"What started out as a UCLA student tradition to relieve stress during finals has turned into a free-for-all event attracting large numbers of people who are not affiliated with UCLA and who have demonstrated they have little consideration for the well-being of our students or the surrounding community," UCLA Associate Vice Chancellor and Dean of Students Robert Naples told UCLA Newsroom. "While we regret having to call off the run in the future, we must ensure the safety of our students and the community and also look after UCLA's relationships with our neighbors."

 According to SoCal Minds, the event attracts 8,000 to 10,000 students and is not a fixture at other local campuses. 

-- Shelby Grad

Photo:  Students participate in the 2008 Undie Run. Credit: Ken Hively / Los Angeles Times
Comments () | Archives (22)

It will still happen, just in a less organized manner. And for the better, who wants a bunch of randos creeping

There were rumors about trying to end it last year, but honestly, how are they going to stop so many students from doing it. People prepare weeks ahead of time for this event, and most students are not going to stop willingly.

All the news coverage -broadcast and internet - ruined this event. Like the mooning of the trains in the OC.

I'm a former Bruin, and while I never participated, I always thought it was a cool unique thing that Bruins understood. Why do the few have to ruin it for the many. Don't give up you chonis that easy Bruins!

UCLA has been planning to do this for years.

By forcing the route to go through campus as opposed to through the North Village the Administration could slowly kill the event with it's python grip.

I'm surprised that this didn't happen sooner. It really is a shame and I'm waiting for UCLA to ban wearing Blue on campus because of "safety issues."

Chapman University administrators and City officials in Orange, CA went the other way. The school seems to have acknowledged the healthy, stress-relieving nature of collegiate events like post-finals undie run.

While Chapman doesn't officially endorse the twice-annual tradition, the school actually subsidizes a post-run foam party and dance on campus in the interest of keeping out off too much trouble.

And, the Chapman kids actually have managed to find a way to tie charity into their event. They strip down in front of the school and donate the clothing to a charity benefiting orphans in Africa.

The Orange County Register did a couple of stories about this. Here's a link to the most recent one about the measures the school and City of Orange took to keep the spring event honorable:

Time to bring back the MIDNIGHT YELL!!!!

Let the students have their fun.

This is taking risk-adversity way too far. Shutting down this tradition because there were a couple of fights last year is like closing down the freeway because there was an accident on a Tuesday.

As a Bruin, the administration at UCLA has long been a wet blanket. I mean, for God's sake, you can't even by a beer at a UCLA football home game because our ex-Chancellor is an alcoholic, so our entire fan base has to suffer for his lack of discipline. Just stupid.

Bravo UCLA. Let's make sure that there are absolutely no traditions left to bind the students and the university. I would also suggest eliminating the sports teams since time spent at those games could better be spent in quiet mediation. Do you really wonder why USC alumni feel so much more loyalty to their school?

I find the use of quotations marks in the title of this article interesting, given that the event is indisputably called the Undie Run, while the "safety concerns" probably are best approached with more credulity.

They can take my underwear but they will NOT take my underwear RUN!!!

Good luck stopping people from running in a particular kind of clothing, UCLA. The legal bills on that alone will break the budget.

"What started out as a UCLA student tradition to relieve stress during finals has turned into a free-for-all event attracting large numbers of people who are not affiliated with UCLA and who have demonstrated they have little consideration for the well-being of our students or the surrounding community,"

aka THANK YOU U$C FOR SCREWING EVERYONE OVER. Paying 50k per year should buy you your own traditions, don't you think?

What an unfortunate, narrow-minded, and overly paternalistic reaction. If incidents occurred last year, then the University should try and get more involved to minimize such problems in the future. Greater security presence, more organization, and coordinating other related activities, could all have minimized problems. But events such as the undie run, and other fun diversions are part of what makes a university's culture and identity. Just shows that the administration are out of touch, and are shunting the character of UCLA. School's like Yale seem to pull it off, but I guess UCLA's administration cannot figure it out. Shame.

A generation ago students would of been protesting the War, and a whole lot of other injustices. Today they seam fixated on running in their underwear. I do not fault their priorities to each is his own. But i do not think they realize that on current path this country is headed, their underwear and clothes may be the only possessions they will own in the future.

" look after UCLA's relationships with our neighbors."

And there you have it. The stuffy, well-heeled residents of Westwood (who moved there after UCLA did) will only be satisfied when there is no more UCLA in their neighborhood.

"has turned into a free-for-all event attracting large numbers of people who are not affiliated with UCLA"
It's unfortunate that people who are not UCLA students have to ruin an event that the students use to blow off steam on finals week.

The academy must provide opportunities for attractive young people to display their bodies at large public gatherings. It’s essential to the integrity of the pedagogic enterprise.

As a Bruin who just graduated this past fall, Undie Run was BY FAR the best tradition I ever participated in and was the site of some of my most wonderful college memories. This is an absolute travesty. The administration should be ashamed of itself for not doing virtually everything possible to protect it. I can honestly say that the time I felt the most Bruin Pride was when I was running around campus with thousands of other underwear-clad people, laughing and screaming in excitement. Damn shame.

I'm a bruin who participated in the last 5 undie runs. There's absolutely no way they can stop it from happening. What are they going to do? Detain all 5,000 people and prevent them from doing it? I don't have my ID with me thank you very much. Good luck trying to figure out who people are.

Indecent exposure? There's no genitalia showing. Disorderly conduct? Only the drunk people who actually fight.

Thus, for the vast majority of us, we will continue to do so whether you like it or not.

Sounds like a good way to blow off post-finals stress...If these guys are on campus, I dont see how it affects the surrounding neighborhood.

As long as their wearing some stylist CK's is fine by me..

I am a recent Bruin grad and was fortunate enough to do undie run five or six times. While I did notice that it was becoming increasingly sketchy, the University should be protecting its students by strengthening campus security rather than by ignoring the fact that it is going to happen regardless. This is sad.


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