Fedora party: Campus community holds rally in support of Lariviere

University community members rallied today outside of Johnson hall in support of President Lariviere with the hopes that the outcome of today’s executive meeting of the state board of higher education (OUS), where Lariviere’s employment status is being determined, will be favorable for him.

Over 60 staff, students and faculty members showed up in support of Lariviere, and stood shoulder-to-shoulder on the front steps of Johnson hall and chanted their loyalty.

“Stand with the hat!” and “We love our Prez!” were among the chants of the energetic crowd before breaking into a unified humming of “Mighty Oregon.” Sporadic chants of “George must go!” also surfaced, referencing OUS Chancellor George Pernsteiner and their aversion for his leadership.

“It’s important for us as individuals in this community to recognize that President Lariviere is a person, but he also stands for a vision that this University is going to be one of the best public institutions in the country,” Housing staff member Drew Terhune said.

Terhune, along with the help of journalism major Iris Bull, organized the rally. They both believe it is necessary for the voices of the campus community to be heard on such an important day as this.

“It’s not necessarily about Lariviere at this point, it’s about the future of the University of Oregon and the future of education here on our campus and the opportunities for students,” Bull said. “This a place where people come when they want to innovate, people come here because they want to make a difference in the world and Lariviere wants to make that possible for all students.”

Faculty members who were present included instructors from all schools. Classified staff were also well represented at the event with a large turnout from various departments across the University.

“I am very disappointed by the non-renewal of Lariviere’s contract,” Classified staff member and union leader Star Holmberg said. “He stuck his neck out for us, and he took a lot of heat. He’s a great leader, he’s a good academic mind, and he’s what’s good for the U of O.”

T-shirts reading, “WE LOVE OUR PREZ”, were available for a $5 donation that goes towards repaying Priscilla Southwell. Southwell, head of the political science department, facilitated the creation of the shirts as well as funding them up front for resale at the rally. Many of those rallying purchased the shirts and sported them along with fedoras and held signs with words of support for Lariviere.

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