Alumni Life

The Year that Was... 1984

leg warmers

They’ve Got “The Look”

  • Nothing says the ’80s like legwarmers—and jelly bracelets, shoulder pads, parachute pants, jean jackets and neon everything. Preppies sport penny loafers and wear their polos with collars up. So rad, so bad!

UB Milestones

  • The first Oozefest is held in April by the Student Alumni Board. (By 2004, it is known as one of the largest collegiate mud volleyball  tournaments in the United States, involving more than 1,000 players and volunteers.)
  • UB is awarded the contract for the first MBA program to be offered in China.

Cost of Doing Business

  • A photocopy in Baldy Hall: $.08
  • A copy of the 1984 Buffalonian yearbook: $15 (pricey!)
  • A Big Gulp at 7-Eleven: $.49

Seen and Heard

  • Present-day social media maven George Takei visits UB with fellow Trekkie Walter Koenig, who played Chekov.
  • Sex therapist “Dr. Ruth” Westheimer answers students’ pressing questions during a campus lecture in February.
  • Campus Gumby Festival features Gumby’s creator, Art Clokey.

Sports and Entertainment

  • “Terms of Endearment” wins the Oscar for Best Picture. 
  • The Soviet Union leads 14 countries boycotting the Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. 
  • The Boston Celtics beat the Los Angeles Lakers in a legendary seven-game NBA championship.

World News

  • AT&T Bell Labs splits following a federal antitrust ruling.
  • NASA launches the Challenger, its 10th space shuttle mission. 
  • U.S. President Ronald Reagan calls for a global ban on chemical weapons.

Rocking the Casbah

The clash

Photo: David S. Ottavio, BA ’85

Last fall, rare photos of the Clash’s final North American tour were uncovered by UB archivists, showing the seminal punk band’s performance in Alumni Arena on April 28, 1984. Also found: pics of The Police’s 1980 tour with XTC, along with shots of the Talking Heads, Peter Gabriel, the B-52s and other acts, as part of the UB Libraries’ Special Collections exhibit “Prominent Visitors.”

Other music makers who visited campus in 1984:

  • Black Uhuru
  • Dizzy Gillespie (with Steve Landesberg)
  • Cindy Lauper (Fall Fest)
  • Graham Parker (with DFX-2)
  • Stevie Ray Vaughan (Fall Fest)