A team of sociologists at the University of Copenhagen released findings today that the University of California, Santa Barbara is indeed an accredited university and research institution.
The paper, published in the journal Sociology of Education, had unexpected origins. Six months ago the group travelled to Isla Vista, the half square mile adjacent to UCSB’s campus where the majority of undergraduate students live, to go on a “drug and sex bender,” said Gretta Pederson, an Associate Professor in the sociology department at the University of Copenhagen. “Life as an academic can be pretty rough. The occasional indulgence in carnal pleasures allows us to blow off steam.”
“We read all these wild stories on Yelp about how much fun people had on the Del Playa on Halloween,” said Emil Hansen, a 4th year graduate student in Pederson’s group. “We have to deal with rotweer for most of the year and Gretta has been reading Hunter S. Thompson’s stuff lately, so we said ‘let’s go, for helvede!’”
The academics arrived on a Friday in late April around 10pm, and they “thought that all [their] wildest dreams had come true,” Hansen said. Having packed only swimsuits, rubber floaties, and ribbed condoms, they spent their first and second nights playing beer games, listening to local music played on grassy lawns, slacklining, and surfing. “It was exactly 23 degrees Celsius all weekend,” reminisced Dr. Bjork Mikkelsen, the chair of the department.
The first hints that the community was not purely a utopia of good weather and better people came Sunday, when Isla Vista felt eerily deserted to the group. They wandered onto what they later realized was a college campus and discovered a library filled with students. “On a Sunday morning!” Pederson said, laughing. On a trip to the bathroom, Hansen saw a student holding what looked like a midterm exam with a B+ written at the top. He said the student, looking at himself in the mirror over the sink, asked his own reflection, “Why are you like this?”
The team went immediately to find the Sociology department, where their Californian colleagues greeted them warmly, treating them to dinner, drinks, and a walk around the lagoon to stargaze. Further investigation revealed a “dynamic, and frankly exciting research university,” according to Mikkelsen, his eyes sparkling as he recollected the experience.
Their sociological field work concluded, the group has already planned a return trip. “We will be mixing business with pleasure this time around,” Pederson said.