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Celebrating Pi Day With the Campus' First-Ever Pi-Mile Run

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More than 180 students, faculty and staff members turned out for the first-ever Pi-Mile Run and Walk at the Jacobs School of Engineering on March 14, also known as Pi Day. 
View our Pi-Mile Run photo album on Facebook. 

San Diego, Calif., March 15, 2012 -- What’s more fun than celebrating March 14, Pi Day, by eating pie with an “e”? Getting rid of the guilt by running 3.14 miles and donating money to help science education.

And that’s exactly what more than 180 students, faculty and staff members did Wednesday by taking part in the first-ever Pi-Mile Run and Walk at the Jacobs School of Engineering at the University of California, San Diego. Some were experienced triathlon runners. Others were taking part in their first long-distance race. Many said they wanted to have fun and contribute to a good cause.

 

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Ryan Hayes, a graduate student in biophysics was first to cross the finish line.

The event was organized by the Triton Student Engineering Council and the Jacobs Graduate Student Council. Proceeds from the $10 registration went to the San Diego Science Alliance, a group that provides outreach for students in kindergarten through 12th-grade and their teachers. Participants also received a T-shirt, featuring the Greek letter pi, and a slice of apple pie after the race.

“We’re really happy with the turnout today,” said Mark Chapman, a bioengineering graduate student and one of the event’s lead organizers. “Everyone seems to have a good time.”

Of all 185 runners and walkers, Ryan Hayes, a graduate student in biophysics, came in first, covering the race’s 3.14-mile course in just 18 minutes and 16 seconds. “I celebrate Pi Day and I like to run,” Hayes said. “So this was a good combination.” He was on the track team as an undergraduate, but hadn’t run any competitive races in a while.

Erik Roberts, a top-10 finisher, is on the UC San Diego triathlon team and a senior majoring in bioengineering. He not only wanted to have fun, he said. He also is a strong believer in the importance of education. “That’s how you improve inequality,” he said. “It’s great to have a diverse group working on scientific problems. The more people we can get into science, the better.” Roberts is currently applying to medical school. He has his eye on UC San Francisco, which offers a great combination of patient care and research, especially in the field of neuroscience, he said.

Olivia Simpson, a first-year computer science graduate student, said she liked the event’s community-building aspect. “It’s a good event to come together,” she said. “It’s a good way to welcome the spring.”

Simpson and fellow runners and walkers all tucked into slices of apple pie after the race. Luis Meraz, student activities chair for the Triton Engineering Student Council, and another lead organizer, was already thinking ahead to next year.

“We’ll do it bigger and better,” he said. 

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Runners at the start of the race. 

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Media Contacts

Ioana Patringenaru
Jacobs School of Engineering
Phone: 858-822-0899
ipatrin@ucsd.edu

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