Worst Decade Ever? by Cathy Sandeen

The cover story of Time Magazine for December 7, 2009 quickly caught my eye: The Decade from Hell: And why the next one will be better (by Andy Serwer).

I had to admit, when we tally up major events over the past ten years, it paints pretty frightening picture: dot-com bubble and tech sector downturn, 911, Enron, Worldcom, gas price increases, Iraq War, Afghanistan, SARS. Hurricane Katrina, and now the Great Recession and H1N1.  The list goes on and it is quite a wake up call when you realize all we have been through.

However, the key phrase here is “been through”. I am hoping as a culture and society, we have learned some lessons from the past decade and, more importantly, that we are ready to transcend it.

In this spirit, the cover art for the winter 2010 UCLA Extension course catalog (designed by Peter Good of Cummings & Good design studio) seeks to remind us of our own power.  The cover is based on this quotation from Carl Jung:  “I am not what happened to me. I am what I choose to become.”

As we look forward to 2010, let’s embrace our power to choose whatever we want to become in our brand new year and decade.



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