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Workers place the beam, with its’ symbolic tree, on top of the Science and Engineering Building 2 during the Topping-Out ceremony at UC Merced Friday. The Topping-Out ceremony celebrates the placement of the last beam at the top of the research and academic building under construction at UC Merced. The tree, which is a live oak, symbolizes the beginning of the life of the building. It will later be planted as part of the landscaping, according to Tim Albiani, project director at the construction company McCarthy.