BORED AWARDS: THE BEST OF UVM IN 2021

It has been simultaneously the longest and shortest year ever.  A wild time-warp of isolation, digital life, nose swabs, masks, rules, science, smizing, firepits, and ice rinks. There’s been no shortage of highs and lows – and much like last 2020…we’re choosing to remember the highs.

Now in its sixth year, the BORED Awards are meant to help us find the best of the best of the best at UVM and in Burlington (with your help of course).  Acknowledging that a lot of things were just plain absent from UVM-life during our COVID year (Food Trucks? Where?  SpringFest? What’s that?!), we whiddled our 2021 categories down to the essentials – and added a few virtual mainstays just because we were curious.  This year we asked for thoughts on 21 unique categories that cover a variety of campus experiences – and over 300 of community members nominated and voted on the winners.

If you’re interested, you can check out the historical BORED Awards Archives and read up on past winners. But it’s 2021 and we’re looking ahead (by reflecting on the past). So without further adieu – here’s the best of the best of UVM in during our pandemic year (with a little commentary from us, your friendly neighborhood UVM BORED team):

FOOD

students eating on central campus

Best Dining Hall:
Central Campus Dining Hall

Runner Up: Simpson Dining

Which do you prefer? Grilled Cheese sandwiches or a handpicked salad from the salad bar? Can’t decide? No worries, Central Campus Dining Hall has got it all for your cravings. From exotic healthy cuisines to your favorite grilled comfort meals, Central Campus Dining has taken the title for best dining hall food. Even though the directional arrows on the ground can get a bit confusing at times, central dining is the place for all of your college student hunger needs.

 

Wood Fire Pizza being cooked

Best Pizza Stop: American Flatbread

Runner Up: Folino’s Wood Fired Pizza

Year-over-year we expect this to be the most contentious category – but the best always rises to the top, and we can’t say we disagree.  While pizza tastes can change with the wind depending on the time of day and your stress levels – we feel pretty good about Flatbread being the overall champ for a third year.  And Folino’s? A solid runner-up.  No disagreements from us. Two great pizza places that go great together.  Don’t @ us New Yorkers about “real pizza”.  We’ll just be over here enjoying some New Vermont Sausage while you go off.

 

burlington bagel bakery storefront

Best Bagel Stop:Burlington Bagel Bakery

Runner Up: Willows Bagels

If folks didn’t have strong opinions about pizza – they definitely do about Bagels.  New York Style vs Montreal Style. Plain Cream Cheese or Flavored Cream Cheese? Everything or Plain?  Collectively we don’t know if we completely agree with this choice – but what can we say…the people have spoken and we respect the choice of the people. Guess it’s time to pop on down to church street and  give it another go with a cup-o-joe.

 

Hendersons cafe counter

Best Coffee Stop:
Henderson’s Cafe

Runner Up: Muddy Waters

What is more necessary for students going about their day, in a mad dash from class to class with small breaks at the library to get their work done? Nothing other than coffee (and maybe a mental health break), And name a more accessible spot than Henderson’s right in the Davis Center, Whether you are grinding out some last minute studying or need a pick me up for your walk back to the dorms Henderson’s has all the coffee you need and the skills to make it taste splendid. Muddy waters is a little further away from campus but if you are looking for a nice warm and comfortable atmosphere you would be hard pressed to find a better spot.

 

CAMPUS LIFE

uvm program board group shot

Best Student Club / Organization:
UVM Program Board

Runner Up: UVM Ski + Snowboard Club

You’ve heard it here first people. UVM Program Board takes the title for Best Student Club/Organization. Don’t worry, we’ve wiped our tears here at UVM Bored headquarters. From planning and hosting countless events in the past such as Winter and Spring Fest, we’ve got to give credit when it’s due. UVM Ski + Snowboard Club…Your two year winning streak has come to a well fought end. Perhaps, next years’ snow season will be your time of redemption. Till then, congrats UPB!

 

a student hugging a puppy

Best Campus Personality / Celebrity:
Hazel the Wellness Dog

Runner Up: Gary Derr

Woof woof bark bark. Did you hear Hazel was outside on Redstone? Meet Hazel the Wellness dog, once a very sleepy golden retriever puppy now turned into a very zen full grown golden retriever. Hazel was raised on Campus surrounded by all of you! No wonder she is so chill. Hazel will be there on your Wellness journey as she will be guiding you when you need her the most. She will be here for all of your serotonin pick me ups, pets, and cuddles. Make sure to tell her she is the best. Because she is. Next time you see her around campus with one of the Wellness Environment Staff, make sure to give her some love.

 

students playing ultimate frisbee

Best Intramural Sport:
Ultimate Frisbee

Runner Up: Tie – Soccer + Broomball

In a year where every day featured the unexpected – we definitely didn’t expect one of the biggest upsets from the BORED Awards to be in this category. We’ve been doing the BORED awards for 6 years now, and for five of them we’ve had this category.  And for each of those five years Broomball has been the undeniable winner. This year though? Change is in the air. Nothing like a COVID-friendly activity like Ultimate Frisbee to tip the scales.  It was close though. Ultimate walked away this year with 27% of the votes while Soccer and Broomball had 26% each (3 votes less!).   Get out there and celebrate Ultimate fans – you deserve the gold star for this year.

 

university heights behind an ice rink

Best Residence Hall: University Heights

Runner Up: Living & Learning

With both res halls being just a few steps away from each other, this was an extremely close call! Yet, the winner for Best Residential Hall goes to University Heights. UHeights won our first BORED Awards 4 years ago! Living & Learning Center, you fought a good fight for two years but UHeights is back stronger than ever! The throne belongs to them now. Sorry, we don’t make the rules. Congrats UHeights!

the entrance to wing davis wilks residence hall

Best Learning Community: Outdoor Experience

Runner-Up: Sustainability

The leading gang on redstone campus, it’s no wonder that Outdoor Experience was the first pick, they have been chosen as a runner up every year until now when they get to stand in the limelight. With a total of 6 dorms on campus and in non-covid times a learning community class that spends much of their time outside they seem to be quite the fit for UVM students. Runner up was sustainability which houses students in both U Heights South and Harris.  This is OE’s first win – for as long as we’ve had this category they’ve always been runner-up. Always a bridesmaid, never a bride….until 2021.

 

students in stacked in hammocks

Best Hammocking Spot: Redstone Forest / Pines

Runner-Up: The Burlington Waterfront

The best hammocking spot rightfully goes to The Redstone Forest for the 4th year in a row! The Redstone Forest truly makes it one of the best places to take classes outside, hang out with friends, to zen, or take a nap. You will have no problem finding a spot to hammock as there are a fair share of trees you can choose from. Once the warm weather hits, get your hammocks out to enjoy the sun and the bit of welcomed shade!

 

colorful pens laid out on a table

Best Free Pens On-Campus: UVM BORED

Runner Up: UVM Program Board

Oh gosh. We can already see the @uvmupb posts now, “What pens? You mean markers?”. Well. It’s undeniable. Our pens are famous, and with 79% of the votes…it’s pretty clear UVM agrees too (if they didn’t think they weren’t pens – they wouldn’t have voted for them…right?). We love ya UPB – but this isn’t a battle you can win. And that’s OK. We all have our strengths (😘 ). Thanks to all the students out there that handed us another decisive win. We humbly accept our victory and would like to say to UPB better luck next time. As if, you’ll ever beat us.

 

mailboxes at the residence hall front desk

Best Place to Work On-Campus:
Residence Hall Front Desk Attendants

Runner Up: Skinny Pancake

Now, we know that there are some incredible jobs on campus. Yet, the people of Catamount Country have chosen. Apparently, having such a title like an Attendant for Residence Hall Front Desk is something UVM Students have with pride. We love that! Runner up for this award goes to  the famous Skinny Pancake. We get it, great vibes in Skinny P’s spot in L&L Center. The issue is not the Skinny Pancake crew. It’s when you guys run out of Mac & Cheese and Breaded Cheese Curds… Don’t get me started on when there aren’t any more Intervales. ANYWHO, congrats Residence Hall Front Desk Attendants. We love seeing you guys sitting behind those plexi glasses trying to submit BlackBoard quizzes.

 

Davis Center

Best On-Campus Study Spot:
Dudley H. Davis Center

Runner Up: Howe Library

Take THAT Howe Library! For the best on campus study spot this year, students have finally realized that the heart of breaking a sweat during finals week lies in the Dudley H Davis Center. Since 2015, the Howe Library has reigning champ in this category – known to comfort all of our stressed Catamounts with ample (quiet) study spaces. The comfort ends when study rooms fill up apparently…and the Davis Center took advantage of the opportunity. Throughout all four floors of a decidedly less-busy DC this year, we’ve been able to stress about a chem exam everywhere from Brennan’s luxurious artistic chairs to the plush fourth floor seats with a view. All in all, if you ever feel like there’s no place to stress in peace, take a trip to Davis.

 

ACADEMICS

hand on a chalboard

Best Class / Course: World Food,Pop & Develop (CDAE 002)

Runner Up: Fundamentals of Nutrition (NFS 043)

Who has a burning desire to learn about World Food, Populations & Development? Apparently UVM students do. While this class has never actually WON in the six years we’ve run the BORED Awards, it has frequently popped up as a runner up – but this year is different. CDAE 002 takes the award for Best Class Course here on our lovely campus.  When it comes to to register for classes – maybe consider adding this one to the roster.

 

Best Professor: Dr. Don Stratton

Runner Up: Dr. Elizabeth “Lizzy” Pope

Don Stratton, is a bundle of joy as he teaches everything under the sun about the basics of biology. To describe his personality, he is a mix of a golden retriever and your favorite dad. He is very passionate about all of the different topics within the classes he is teaching, and always tries to find a way to make the class enjoyable. To give his students a better understanding of what they are learning he shows videos (highly recommend looking up mudskippers), talks about articles he recently saw, or gives real life examples. He always checks in on students during class to see if anyone has any questions or just responds to what people are saying in the comment section. During this unprecedented academic year he was able to create a warm and welcoming online teaching environment for his students, including me. I recommend everyone to take one of his classes to get an in-depth understanding of biology, but to also have an amazing and heartfelt professor. -Danielle

 

williams hall with cat tales in the foregroound

Best School / College: College of Arts & Sciences

Runner Up: College of Agriculture & Life Sciences

The College of Arts & Sciences is the largest college amongst UVM’s seven schools and colleges – so it goes without saying that it’s a shoe-in for a winner in this category. You don’t need to be a CEMS major to see how the stats line up.   EXCEPT – it hasn’t always been the case; the College of Agriculture & Life Sciences always gives CAS a run for its money in our yearly poll.  In a year where much has been written about UVM and the liberal arts (and more recently a lot of interest in them from the Class of 2025), we think this is a well deserved win.  From painting to astronomy – the opportunity to learn is rich in CAS; and the faculty there are great too.  Much love to our CAS friends.

 

BURLINGTON & BEYOND

students on camels hump looking out at the view

Best Local Hike: Camel’s Hump

Runner Up: Mount Philo

Arguably one of the most iconic/ recognizable mountains in Vermont this hike has distinguished itself to be one of the greatest places to catch a sunrise (If you can wake up early enough), or an incredible hike if you are looking for an all day adventure and workout. Our Runner up is Mount Philo, which is probably one of the closest hikes to campus if you are still looking for a little bit of elevation gain, despite being a shorter hike it offers a great view of champlain from above.

 

students taking photos of the sunset at the waterfront

Most Instagramable Spot in Burlington: The Burlington Waterfront

Runner Up: World’s Tallest Filling Cabinet

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Of course the waterfront won this one. BUT have you even taken the time out of your day to go visit the World’s Tallest Filing Cabinet?! I bet you haven’t. The waterfront gives you views, sure, but the filing cabinet offers memories that will last a lifetime. So yes, I am glad you all got your chance to enjoy the beauty that the burlington waterfront offers, but come on. Let’s be a little more original from here on.

 

students standing in a line in a hallway

Best thing to do in the covid testing line: Pull up COVerified

Runner-Up: Look at other people in the line

As you run in between your classes to get you twice a week covid test done, make it past the hand sanitizer – blow you noise- hand sanitizer passageway, you reach the two way line. You think to yourself, what can I do? Well we have the answer for you. Take out your phone and pull up your Coverified App. Why do it then you may ask? Because that means you can get through the receiving your Covid test tube from the mountain tables more efficiently of course… no other reason. The runner up though is also very appealing as you look at the other people in line and wonder, ‘what are they thinking right now’, ‘ what if someone writes a Misconnection about me’, ‘ why are they looking at me’, ‘ why are we maintaining eye contact?!?’. Whatever you do in line works with us and thank you for getting that Covid Test!

 

a person walking

Best COVID-Safe Activity: Taking a Walk

Runner Up: Skiing

The Coronavirus has impacted all of our lives changing what we can see as a responsible activity to do in our freetime. With this in mind it doesn’t mean we can’t have fun spending our time distanced and outside. The winner for this category was going on a walk, the all season favorite for just getting outside and enjoying the sunshine, or rain if that’s your flavor.  This might seem boring at first glance – and you’re right. But in a year with so much uncertainty there’s something super comforting in a good ol’ fashioned, super dependable walk.  Toss in the runner up skiing ( the one activity that the attire from last year to this year has remained almost unchanged) and we’ll just count ourselves lucky to live and learn in a place with ample, wonderful, outdoors.

 

hands holding a phone watching an instagram live session

Best Virtual Event: UVM Program Board’s Virtual Pub Quiz

Runner-Up: BSU ‘In the Streets’ Fashion Show

Remember back in the ‘Best Pens’ category when we said we all have our strengths? This is definitely one of UPB’s.  In a normal year we dig a solid round of pub quiz in Brennan’s.  When the pandemic hit – we were kind of sad to think of having our Wednesday evenings free; but the fine folks at UPB pivoted perfectly and managed to run a virtual pub quiz (complete with A++ emcees) on Instagram live.  Sometimes with some surprising production values.  Meanwhile our Virtual game nights were….well. Intimate in size.  Good job UPB. Can’t wait to quiz along with you in person – but loved following along this year virtually.  Shout out to our runner up the BSU fashion show with 3 less votes.  This event is still one of our annual favs and we can’t wait to see all the sick threads on display in next year’s in-person show.