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Triton 5K Brings Together UC San Diego Community at Alumni Weekend

5,000 alumni and friends return to campus for series of events

Photos by Erik Jepsen/UC San Diego Publications

They came. They ran. They celebrated. More than 2,500 alumni, faculty, staff, students and community members returned to UC San Diego for the Triton 5K. The university’s race was part of the annual Alumni Weekend, June 6 through 9, hosted by UCSD Alumni. The race raised more than $300,000 for student scholarships. Established in 1996, the Triton 5K has raised more than $3.3 million benefitting more than 900 UC San Diego students.

Participants at this year’s race had the chance to run (or walk) past renowned art pieces from the Stuart Art Collection, including the stone Bear as well as the iconic Sun God statue. New this year was the 100-meter dash Kids Fun Run, with approximately 200 of the university’s littlest Tritons, ages 12 and under. Following the race, more than 3,000 participants and supporters enjoyed the event festival featuring live music, jousting, inflatable bounce houses and a healthy living fair. 

Triton 5k

At Alumni Weekend, 5,000 alumni and friends enjoyed the opportunity of reconnecting with friends, former classmates and faculty, while revisiting the campus and recalling many UC San Diego memories. Both a kickoff to the start of summer and a time to celebrate all things UC San Diego, the annual weekend brought together members of the Triton family to celebrate all things Triton.

And celebrate they did. From Career Boost Camp and Family Night at the Birch Aquarium, to various reunions and a True Triton Brunch, all guests unleashed their inner Triton. The much-buzzed program began Thursday night with Taste of UCSD. Alumni and friends listened to five UC San Diego faculty members discuss their groundbreaking research and latest projects in short, five-minute TED-style talks. Afterward, they enjoyed culinary delights and tasty libations from alumni vendors.

On Friday, 400 alumni, families and friends explored Birch Aquarium in a private, after-hours tour. On Saturday, while more than 2,500 runners showed their stuff at the Triton 5K, the Career Boost Camp was a hit amongst alumni and professionals alike with more than 100 attendees. The half-day program, featuring "America's Top Career Coach” Robin Ryan, San Diego Business Journal editor-in-chief Reo Carr and a panel of alumni entrepreneurs, provided useful tips for professional development.

Later that evening, 400 alumni and friends gathered for the Alumni Celebration recognizing four distinguished members of the Triton Family held in the Price Center East Ballroom. With six screens around the room and a central stage, alumni were entertained by Susan Narucki, professor of music, accompanied by pianist Brendan Nguyen, M.A. ’10 and Quartet Nouveau, along with a video celebrating the honorees. A complete list of honorees is available at www.alumni.ucsd.edu/awards.

On Sunday, alumni volunteers from across the country attended the True Triton Brunch at the Faculty Club to acknowledge and recognize the countless hours they contribute to their local clubs on behalf of UC San Diego. In addition, the inaugural True Triton Award was presented to Neville Billimoria, Muir ’82, for his service to UC San Diego.

“Our 5th Annual Alumni Weekend was a sensational reminder that our Triton Family is strong, enthusiastic, and cherishes UC San Diego,” says Armin Afsahi, ’90, assistant vice chancellor of Alumni Relations and Development. Almost 5,000 alumni and friends came back and celebrated UC San Diego at over 20 events across campus. “We deeply appreciate our partners across campus who were instrumental in UC San Diego’s efforts to develop and deliver this special weekend.”

Sponsors included: Fisher Scientific; Darcy and Robert Bingham; UC San Diego Emeriti Association; Darlene Shiley; Andrew and Erna Viterbi; Ann and Bob Dynes; Oceanids; UCSD Retirement Association; Dr. Seuss Foundation; Henry’s Hemophiliacs; Peter ’67 & Peggy Preuss; Elizabeth Van Denburgh ’78; and The York Girls – Sybil, Cynthia, Rachel ’71; Stone Brewing Co., Outback Adventures and KIND.

UCSD Alumni is already planning for next year’s Alumni Weekend with four days of exclusive events for alumni, family and friends.