- Student Government Association (SGA) succeeded Champaign-Urbana Student Association.
- State drinking age was raised from 19 to 21.
- Black Alumni Association formed.
- Seventeen dead locust trees were removed from the Quad.
- Preppie fashion fad swept campus.
- Beckwith Living Center opened.
- Fire caused some $300,000 in damages to Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity.
- MTV was launched on August 1st, quickly became a sensation with college students across the country.
- The Chicago Circle and the Medical Center merged to become the University of Illinois at Chicago.
- Athletic Director Neale Stoner instituted Tailgreat ‘82, a pre-game event to spark enthusiasm for the football team.
- Fire caused approximately $200,000 in damages to Sigma Alpha Mu fraternity.
- Students protested elimination of African-American programming from WPGU-FM. In partial response, African-American-operated WBML-FM was launched.
- First day of the spring semester’s New Student Week saw temperatures of 26 degrees below zero, with wind chills estimated at 81 below zero.
- Some 500 students protested killings of Palestinians in Beirut.
- English Building received a major renovation.
- Rubik’s Cube and the Sony Walkman hit campus.
- Referee Richard McVay died of heart attack on Memorial Stadium field during game against Michigan State.
- Illinois played in Liberty Bowl, lost to Alabama 21-15.
- Board of Trustees passed rule requiring students to live in certified housing for 30 semester hours, instead of the 60 semester hours previously required.
- The Ms. Kids won the national wheelchair basketball title.
- Agricultural Engineering Sciences Building and Swanlund Administration Building completed.
- Illini football team had a record-breaking 9-0 season in the Big Ten.
- Illinois played in Rose Bowl, lost to UCLA 45-9.
- On February 28th, snowfall caused afternoon classes to be canceled.
- NCAA placed UI football team on 2-year probation for recruiting violations.
- Men’s basketball team was co-champion of the Big Ten.
- The renamed Foellinger Auditorium re-opened after undergoing extensive renovation.
- The first supercomputer at the University was installed.
- Arnold and Mabel Beckman gave the University $40 million to establish an interdisciplinary research institute.
- The first Farm Aid concert was held at Memorial Stadium.
- Halloween celebration led to vandalism and injuries. Twenty people were arrested.
- Fire damaged Acacia fraternity house.
- Students protested University investment in companies doing business with South Africa.
- New student ID cards introduced.
- Hundreds flocked to the University Observatory to obtain glimpse of Comet Halley.
- Illinois played in Peach Bowl, lost to Army 31-29.
- Renovation of McKinley Health Center began.
- “Taste on the South Quad” held.
- Students erected shantytowns on the Quad in divestiture campaign. Sixty were arrested during a pro-divestiture protest at a Board of Trustees meeting.
- Installation of telecommunication lines and underground irrigation systems on the Quad created what the Illio called “The Year Without a Quad.”
- Board of Trustees voted in favor of divestiture.
- Illini Student Federal Credit Union formed.
- McKinley Health Center introduced new hours and services.
- Computer fee instituted.
- Six buildings were entered on the National Register of Historic Places: the Observatory, Harker Hall, the Natural History Building, Altgeld Hall, Kenney Gym, Kenney Annex, and the Aeronautical Lab B.
- Ice Arena re-opened after a renovation costing $27 million.
- University imposed sanctions on Acacia fraternity for incident occurring at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
- Daily Illini offices moved from Illini Hall to building at 57 East Green Street.
- Mike White resigned as football coach and Neale Stoner quit as athletic director after an NCAA probe into alleged infractions. John Mackovic was named head coach and athletic director.
- Illinois played in All-American Bowl, lost to Florida 14-10.
- The “Flying Illini” men’s basketball team reached the Final Four, lost to Michigan 83-81.
- The men’s gymnastics team won the national championship.
- Illinois Quarterly magazine debuted.
- Renovation of Busey-Evans completed.
- Interfraternity Council passed rule forbidding fraternities from purchasing kegs.
- Arson fire destroyed Memorial Stadium turf.
- Illini students, including graduate student Charlene Teters, began protesting Chief Illiniwek.
- Fire caused $125,000 in damages to Florida Avenue Residence Hall.