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5K Race Forges Bonds Among CSE Alumni, Faculty, Staff and Students

CSE alumni, students, staff and faculty turned out in force to run, walk or just cheer on CSE’s main team, Overclocked CSE Enthusiasts, entered in the Chancellor's 5K run June 8 during UC San Diego’s Alumni Weekend 2014. Winners in the different divisions included professor Christine Alvarado who ranked #1 in her division with a race time of 22:41.2. Alvarado is pictured at right with (far right) CSE alumna Jennifer Arguello (BS ’00). In other divisions, Brian Hile was #2, advisor Viera Kair came in #4, staffer Dave Wargo #5, while CSE Prof. Ryan Kastner and contracts and grants administrator Cheryl Hile both finished #7 in their divisions. The overall team average was helped by the times of Ph.D. students Alex Breslow and Dustin Richmond, who both finished under 19 minutes on the 5K route.

“It was a team that truly inspires,” notes Gupta, who finished with a respectable time of 29:09.4 (beaten only among CSE faculty in the ages 51-59 division by CSE Prof. Mihir Bellare, who finished #8 in the division), to Gupta’s #14 and Dean Tullsen’s #15 finish). “From Cheryl Hile's unbounded enthusiasm, matched only by her thorough planning and team building, to [alumni president]  Lindsey Fowler's love of life at UCSD, our team was full of inspirational images of faculty, students, staff and alumni running together, having fun, even dominating in their divisions, and all the while setting trailblazing role models for others to follow.”

Gupta also recalls the role that Cheryl Hile played in propelling him to the leadership of… the department’s 5K team. “It only took five years of pestering from Cheryl before I would pick up running,” he says.

Hile also earned major props as the team’s booster-in-chief, including arranging for the team’s T-shirts (with help from Steve Hopper and Dave Wargo), and the strong turnout (at 63 runners, the team was the third largest in the race, but #2 in fund-raising to support student scholarships). “”The first award went to the largest team, which makes sense,” said Hile afterwards, noting that other teams took home awards for being fastest, or having the most spirit. “Next year we are going to double our registration, we'll start speed training in January, and we are going to wear pink tutus!,” promises Hile. “We are going to win all three trophies in 2015.”

“We may not have been the largest, or the fastest, or the most spirited, but our team shirts were awesome,” insists Matteo Mannino (MS ’14), who is finishing his degree while working part-time at Qualcomm. “That was my first 5K. Honestly, if it wasn't for Cheryl's enthusiasm and Dave, Dustin, and Karyn's general encouragement, I wouldn't have done it.” “I ran much faster today than I usually do and the only difference was the shirt I was wearing. So in a way, the shirt helped me - overclock – myself,” agrees grad student Sriskanda Shamasunder (MS ’15 expected).. “So glad to be on a team like that!"

Read more about the 5K race.
View more photos on the UCSD CSE Facebook page.