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Top 10 Stories of the Year

1. Death of BU baseball player

The campus community was shocked when junior baseball player Phil Kaiser died of an undiagnosed heart condition in October.

While watching a DVD, Kaiser’s girlfriend noticed he appeared to be sweating, gagging and bloated. He was pronounced dead in the emergency room at OSF St. Francis Medical Center.

Peoria County Coroner Johnna Ingersoll said Kaiser’s death was caused by hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a genetic heart disorder that often goes unnoticed. After Kaiser’s death, his teammates said they would focus on moving on as a team, but not forget the loss of a teammate.

 

2. Campus shuts down after blizzard

An early February blizzard cancelled classes for three days. Despite the conditions, several Bradley faculty members from the grounds department, food services, police department and more remained on campus for work.

 

3. Inside look at off-campus housing 

The three-part look at campus housing covered the poor condition of off-campus student housing.

Part one focused on student experiences in poor housing, involving stories from raccoons in bedrooms to basement mold.

The next installment focused on zoning issues plaguing the surrounding neighborhoods, resulting in the eviction of some students.

One rule, unless a lease included a grandfather clause, prohibited more than three adult females from living together. Six female student residents of one house, who did not know about the rule, were forced to separate. Three of them moved across the street.

“Our house is not a grandfather house. Many people either don’t know about this clause or just don’t follow it,” said one of the residents, junior accounting major Cathy Block. “People in our neighborhood do not really like the fact that it’s being taken over by college students and therefore told the committee that we were breaking the rules.”

The final story covered prospective homes and apartments, and students who were pleased with their housing options. 
“I’m satisfied with where I live,” said senior management and administration major Kara Mauser. “We have a good landlord. I know not everyone has that, and we are fortunate in that respect.”

 

4. New arena christened with Weezer set

The new arena opened at the beginning of the school year. Its concert debut was a crowd-pleasing performance by rock band Weezer.

 

5. Construction

From Westlake Hall to the expansion of Giesert Cafeteria, Bradley is in the process of a facelift.

The newest addition to campus, the Hayden-Clark Alumni Center, is on its way to completion. The building will be used to celebrate Bradley traditions, memories, and memorabilia as well as to host events for alumni, students and faculty.

Giesert Cafeteria will also be renovated to include doubled seating space, new serving lines and bathrooms in order to create a more efficient dining hall. To avoid interrupting food service or inconveniencing students, only work on the outside of the building was completed. The project’s goal and deadline is the first week of August so that it will be available and ready to serve students.

 

6. Bradley competes for NBC internship 

In February, Bradley and NBC announced an opportunity for communication majors to intern with NBC at the Summer 2012 Olympics.

For several years, NBC only took interns from five schools but this year Bradley became the sixth.

“I take a class out to [New York] every year, and while we were there, I talked to [someone] about the internship,” Communications Department Chair Paul Gullifor said. “We kept in touch and … he said he was really impressed with everything going on at Bradley. I made the pitch, the decision was finalized in spring and it propelled from there.”

Students who are chosen for the internship will work in either New York or London, where the Summer Olympics will be held. Three different positions are being recruited, requiring a multitude of different skills.

Final interviews for the NBC internship were held Thursday morning.

 

7. Internal issues impede Student Senate 

This year has been plagued with disagreements and a lack of progression for Senate. Here, former Senate Treasurer Andrew Kerr and former Student Body President Nick Swiatkowski celebrate after being elected for the 2010-2011 school year.

 

8. Braves recruit Coach Geno Ford

Kent State head men’s basketball coach Geno Ford was hired in March to lead BU’s men’s basketball team.

He was hired three weeks after former head coach Jim Les’ contract was terminated.

Ford said he intends on building a Bradley basketball fan base and to bring more student to the stands.

“The players want to play in front of full arenas, the coaches want to coach in front of full arenas and some of that’s our job,” Ford said during a press conference that formally introducing him as head coach. “We’ve got to win.”

 

9. Overhaul for campus police force

In February the University Police Department moved from the office in the parking deck garage into the newly renovated office space where Blockbuster once was.

Lt. Troy Eeten said the move gives the growing department more room.

“[The new location] is two, maybe three times as big as the space we have now,” said Sgt. Rick Hutchison. “There will now be a dedicated gun room, training room, larger offices, kitchen area and separate rooms for evidence and records, which we don’t have now.”

With their offices in Campustown, they are closer to the St. James Apartment Complex and Main Street Commons. Hutchinson said the location will not effect response time.

 

10. New housing option at Main Street

After delaying construction for nearly a year and being unable to meet initial leasing goals, Main Street Commons is finally on its feet.

With more than half of the building already leased, Main Street Commons representatives and the Bradley administration are optimistic the building will be filled in the fall.

Bradley has invested a little more than $1 million to the project and in return several Bradley policies have been incorporated into its lease. Any Bradley student is able to sign a lease with Main Street Commons, including a select group of freshmen as part of a study.

The first of the two-part project is expected to be completed and ready for students to move in before the fall semester.