“Ever since this construction, I’ve been having really vivid dreams of two Transformers going at it,” said Hertz.
Photo by Julia Wong
Throughout campus, students at UCSD have been awoken by the dulcet sound of jackhammers, utility trucks, and backup sirens. “The constant 7 a.m. wake-up calls,” according to spokesperson William Lewinsky, “simulate the luxury of being in a hotel, at a sleepaway camp, or the immersive experience of living in a Cold War fallout shelter.” Lewinsky then dropped the triple shot iced-espresso he was holding, slipped, and weakly grasped at the straw just out of reach.
The prevalence of construction projects underway during the Fall 2021 quarter has raised concerns on whether or not students will be able to make it to class. To address these concerns, UCSD admin decided to create zone-based alarms that can be heard in all lecture halls, labs and residences on and near campus. The aim of the construction is to alert students that they are finally enjoying the campus in-person, according to an announcement from UCSD administration. “The symphony of street sweepers, bulldozers, and nail guns alert students that it’s time for class, in a way that is not at all excessive,” commented Lewinsky.
“Students should never be late to class,” Lewinsky continued, “therefore all students should never be able to fully sleep, as failure to wake up from pleasant dreams could potentially be an obstacle that keeps them from going to lecture.” Mr. Lewinsky continued, vibrating and gesticulating wildly, “The campus’s commitment to creating a system of ambient noise in every corner of campus triumphs over the need to renovate the deteriorating older buildings! We’re doing you all a favor! Why aren’t any of you grateful for all we’ve been doing for you!?”
One celebrity member of UCSD’s planning committee, the specter of Sarah Winchester, remarked, “Why fix something that’s decrepit or broken when you can just make something new to block out the old stuff? I mean — more colleges aren’t as useful as actual places to park for the students learning here, but we must keep building. We must. UCSD needs the mechanical screeching and wailing to drown out the screeching and wailing of all the people we’ve wronged.”
“It’s not just the sound of construction that is important,” said UCSD tour guide Richard Hertz, “But the views that result from it too. Many non-first-year students are new to campus after its closure during the pandemic, so this is their first chance to see the beauty of UCSD’s ocean view, stunning Geisel Library, and semi-open walkways complete with pedestrian detours. I personally take special time during walkthroughs to highlight the way a 10 minute walk becomes 30 minutes with the alternate pathways.”
The prominent detours throughout the campus were less likely to affect new students, as many are unfamiliar with the layout of the campus from previous years. Students in their final year, according to Lewinsky, are “too burnt out to make any efforts to change the status quo, anyways.” He continued, “The construction on campus is meant to mimic the memory of leaving home. You get the privilege to feel just like when you move out of your childhood home and your room gets immediately renovated, and it’s like you never made an impact at all. It should be a great comfort to students.”
Hertz claimed, “This is a unique experience. I’ve learned a lot about myself, like how comfortable it is to sleep with earplugs in, or how the sounds created by the construction are unique. Students in new Sixth would never get to experience this. From the morning jackhammers to the late-night street sweeper roars, students soundly stay awake knowing that UCSD cares about their well-being.”