Thursday, April 12, 2012

A sense of where you were

Yes, only one thing missing from this proposed license plate hawked yet again by the UMass Amherst Alumni Association to help provide scholarships to deserving students who attend UMass Amherst, the flagship of our state education armada, top 100 University in the world, and unparalleled economic Juggernaut for all of Western Massachusetts: Like, you know, umm...Amherst!

The typical UMass/Amherst graduate (now 225,000 strong) spent at least four years with an Amherst mailing address.  And for many of them our town represented their first experience away from the home where they were born and raised.

With graduation fast approaching an entire flock will soon be gone, off into the real word.  But their time spent here was special, and certainly far different from what it would have been in any of the other four UMass campus locations. 

Could this generic lack of branding account for why the license plate venture failed miserably in the past?

Note to UMass Amherst Alumni Association:  You were in Amherst.  You are in Amherst, a fine home port for the state flagship of higher education.

 Note sign says AMHERST (and if you are walking or driving, at that point, you are in freakin' Amherst)

A few years back the Powers That Be in Boston wanted folks to stop referring to UMass Amherst as "the flagship" because it apparently hurt the feelings of the other four campuses.  Chancellor Lombardi basically responded with his usual "go to hell" rejection of that (which may have been the start of his downfall).  Around that same time UMass/Amherst spent $3 million redoing the signs at the main entryways.  Note inclusion of AMHERST!


Fan Boy UMass Hoops forum seems excited (but then, they're easily excited)

20 comments:

Separation of State said...

I wouldn't call it a fine home, especially since the town seems to think we're all students who consistently get overly drunk. So like how the town judges the .001% of the students who make trouble for it as 100% of the student population, I as a college graduate of the area would like to disinclude Amherst under the assumption that the .001% of the town against students represents 100% of the population.

Not to mention the university would stand to benefit from a much more student-welcoming town that might speak to students, rather than preach from their politically correct castle known as town hall. The anti-student rhetoric preached on here followed by the quick reversal of "don't forget about us!" is the image I have and always will of Amherst's hypocrisy.

THE University of Massachusetts said...

Seriously? Go screw. The town of Amherst is LUCKY to have the University of Massachusetts reside there. The way the town police, government and businesses treat the university is despicable considering that the only reason the town is what it is is because of the flagship's presence there.

Furthermore, the UCONN license plate does not say Storrs. The Michigan license plate doesn't say Ann Arbor. Hell, the University of Maine license plate doesn't even say Orono. Why should ours say Amherst?!?!?

The university has to do whatever it can to distance itself from the -Amherst label. This is a great start.

Consider yourself lucky that you have what you have with that town and you're not just another Whately, Shutesbury, Montague, Conway, or a forgotten town that was taken over by the Quabbin Reservoir.

Anonymous said...

The VAST majority of alumni identify with the name UMass not the Amherst appendage. Everyone should know that UMass is located in the wonderful town of Amherst but the directional smacks of lesser schools, not the flagship which should only be known as UMass. Do you know anyone who went to UConn-Storrs or Michigan-Ann Arbor?

Other schools UMass tries to emulate include UNC, Wisconsin and Berkeley. Berkeley is unique because there is no Berkeley College like Amherst College...everyone out there knows you are talking about UC Berkeley when you refer to Berkeley. UNC and Wisconsin do use the city name but not all the time everywhere. There is no one who says "On Wisconsin- Madison!"

Anonymous said...

Are you kidding me? I'm a UMass (Amherst) alumn and HATE when we add "Amherst" after it. Only the non-flagships should be qualified with where they are located. If you say UMass, it is ASSUMED you mean UMass Amherst. Flagship State Universities should not need to clarify where you are located. Plus the Minuteman logo kinda gives away the fact that it's UMass Amherst...

Dr. Ed said...

When the UMaine system was created in 1969, both UMaine and the old normal schools (Machias, Fort Kent, Presque Isle, Farmington, Portland/Gorham) all became "at" universities, and then UMPG became Univ of Southern Maine, which pushed UMO (UM-Zero) to become just UMaine in 1985.

For what it is worth, ORONO did NOT want "Orono" on the name of the school.

Dr Ed said...

One more thing -- as I exit the cesspool known as Amherst, I can assure you -- absolutely assure you -- that not only will this plate not appear on my vehicle but that I won't ever be found in a vehicle registered in this manner.

Much like my Chinese (national) neighbor refused to ride in a Japanese car (I explained that my Toyota had been built in Canada, and how the VIN showed that), I refuse to ride in a UM logoed car.

I want to FORGET Amherst -- both the town and the school -- much like guys want to forget their worst memories of Iraq or Vietnam. This cesspool will be on my CV because it has to be, but only that far and no further.

I'm not even going to graduation...

Something like only 3% of the alumni belong to the alumni association. Could it have to do with the fact that UM admit about 5000 freshmen each year, the UM Dean of Students has about 5000 judicial cases each year (4000 of them first offenses) and the UMPD alone makes over 1000 arrests per year?

The above statistics are now 3 years old, and have inflated dramatically from what I hear -- and as Peggy J (who would have made an EXCELLENT VC/STUAF) suggested, UM is p*ssing off a lot of future alumni.

Personally, I would burn money before donating (or spending, eg for athletic tickets) to UMass. I am talking break out the Ohio Blue Tips and lighting it up. I detest this university THAT MUCH!

Anonymous said...

it's definitely assumed that if you say you went/go to UMASS, you mean UMass Amherst. With that said, adding Amherst to the license plate wouldn't hurt, but I wouldn't say it's necessary by any means. In reality, it really doesn't matter, no need for anyone to get their panties in a bunch about it.

Why would you want to forget you went to UMass or resided in Amherst? Have a little respect for the school you are attending. If you don't like it so much go to a different school, nobody needs you here if you're going to have a bad attitude about it. I myself am very proud of attending UMass because it is a well respected school and offers a heck of a lot more than plenty of other schools. And with all of their faults they are still trying to provide you with the best experience possible. If you are comparing your experiences at UMass to a WAR like Iraq or Vietnam, then you should make some serious life changes. Moreover, you have a serious disrespect for those in uniform. Thousands are being killed while you complain about being at one of the top rated universities in the country.

Anonymous said...

Dear Ed,

You are absolutely the pride of UMass. Don't let the door hit you on the way out...to the unemployment line.

Anonymous said...

Can't have it both ways Larry. There is only one Minuteman as a mascot (UMD Corsairs, UML River Hawks, UMB Beacons) so its clear what campus the plate is for.

This town does everything in their power to mess with the college kid, then you want them to pay you hommage? Bah!

Anonymous said...

Have fun with the students' money, without it Amherst would be a shithole town.

Dr. Ed said...

You are absolutely the pride of UMass. Don't let the door hit you on the way out...to the unemployment line.

Is one who writes his own books eligible for unemployment? I ask because I already know what my first THREE books will be about. Guess what?

Yep, and even if I am eligible for leftist handouts (hell, I am already eligible for SSDI), I won't take them. After all, one has to leave something to the leftists schmucks to take....

trussdob said...

Larry, I'm an alum of UMass now working and living in Northampton. My success in my career and with it my contributions to the valley as a permament resident were a direct result of my hard work and discipline during my tenure at UMass. I can also tell you that while I enjoyed my time as a student, not once did I find myself any trouble with the university or the Amherst Police Dept. You'll find that the majority of UMass students spent their time at UMass like I did. We studied, had a little fun, enjoyed Amherst and graduated. I don't dispute the serious issues that affect Amherst because of rowdy, immature college students but I think Amherst should also keep in mind that for the most part the 3 colleges in town provide 20,000+ people that invest money into Amherst's economy; and the majority of those people do so maturely without any troubles at all. From time to time, please discuss the positives of the institutions and their students that do the right thing day in and day out. For example, I'll be riding in Katelynn's Ride on June 3rd....100 miles on my bike to raise money for Dana Farber. Hampshire College hosts the parking, queing, registration/support tents, and after ride entertainment and cookout for the riders and their families and has done so for more than a decade. Many students from all three colleges ride and volunteer to make the event a success. Good stuff!

THE University of Massachusetts said...

Dr. Ed - If UMASS was so terrible, why did you stay? Economics? Forced by parents? A hot GF? For someone who hates the school and town that much, why in the world did you subject yourself to it for 4 years?

Larry - How are the Mass Live boards treating you? Happy that ABC moved into the Golds? hahahahahaha

LarryK said...

Yeah, I love it when Anon birds of a feather all flock together in hero worship of sports, vicariously living out their fantasies because of a failed athletic past.

I notice nobody took up the offer to "give me a piece of their mind" via Twitter (probably because they have so little mind to begin with).

And few have had the balls to come visit here with responses.

Well, except for you--and you're a Cowardly Anon Nitwit. Typical.

Rockin Robin said...

I respect my thoughts, hence why I don't confine them to 140 characters or less.

Anonymous said...

I say "UMass,Amherst" to distinguish it from the Boston campus. In the old days, I took a semester off here and went to UMB -- when it was still renting the Armory building in the center of Boston.

And, yup, neither I, my two daughters, ex husband or any of our friends every had a problem with the police or neighbors while we played, er, studied at UMass.

And we were big into resisting authority and big into insulting the military industrial complex. Ah, youth. I don't miss it a bit because (for most of us) with age comes wisdom. Sorry it missed you, Ed. There's still time.

Dr. Ed said...

Dr. Ed - If UMASS was so terrible, why did you stay?

The term, I think, is "throwing good money after bad" -- it is/was a shell game. One more degree and *then* you will have something worthwhile, don't transfer because you will have to redo stuff whereas if you just keep going here you won't (I could have transferred to Maine and had Navy funding for a very interesting project involving Benedict Arnold's Penobscot Expedition -- but I had my committee together and it only looked like one more year here, maybe 18 months, and otherwise it would be 3-4 more years up there, sooooooo......

And we were big into resisting authority and big into insulting the military industrial complex

I actually respect authority -- just not *this* authority, which is unworthy of respect, and I support the military industrial complex. Always have. Seeing the "Hammer & Sickle" off the back of a ship when you are in International waters (at age 15) sorta does that....

Westfield State University -- has a nice ring and it is going to give Planet UMass a real run for its money. Westfield understands student services...

Dr. Ed said...

In the old days, I took a semester off here and went to UMB -- when it was still renting the Armory building in the center of Boston.

That would have been between 1965 and 1974 -- or a very long time ago. My guess is that you graduated from UMass Amherst circa 1975 and your daughters probaby around 1995.

This place was different then -- even in the '90s it was different. There was frat row -- there *was* a frat row. Everything changed shortly after the turn of the century -- absolutely everything changed when the Red Sox won the world series in 2004.

And, yup, neither I, my two daughters, ex husband or any of our friends every had a problem with the police or neighbors while we played, er, studied at UMass.

That was then, this is now.
That was before people were buying houses on Lincoln Avenue for more than a million dollars. That was then, this is now.

Amherst was a nice place, once.

Anonymous said...

Ed, usually when one uses the phrase "one more thing" it means... oh, nevermind.

THE University of Massachusetts said...

"Well, except for you--and you're a Cowardly Anon Nitwit. Typical"


hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah.... oh Larry, you'll never cease to amaze me!