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2006 Stories

Salvadoran war orphan finds closure through DNA results and family reunion
Angela Fillingim, one of thousands of children orphaned or adopted during El Salvador's bloody 1980-1992 civil war, shared with reporters on Thursday, Dec. 21, memories and photos of her extraordinary return to her native land. She spoke at a well-attended press conference at UC Berkeley's Human Rights Center, a key collaborator in the DNA Reunification Project, which is helping Salvadoran war orphans track down their biological families.
(21 December)

Shotgun sequencing finds nanoorganisms
UC Berkeley scientists have found some of the smallest organisms known in a sample of slime from a California mine. Their discovery proves the value of a technique called "shotgun" sequencing to identify all organisms in a microbial community, particularly those too small to see in a microscope.
(21 December)

NEH, Google boost Internet coding project
New research awards just announced will enable UC Berkeley's Script Encoding Initiative to continue for the next two years its pioneering work to allow users of the native scripts for all writing systems -- from ancient hieroglyphics to Hungarian Runic and more -- to use the Internet.
(20 December)

New study shows promise of genomics in environmental monitoring
A new study led by UC Berkeley researchers identifies specific gene expression changes in a species of water flea in response to contaminants, lending new support for the role of toxicogenomics in environmental monitoring.
(20 December)

Newfound diversity in gamma-ray bursts
Only in the past decade have astronomers been able to make sense of the bright flashes of cosmic light known as gamma-ray bursts, which are the brightest explosions in the universe. But two newly observed bursts suggest that not all such flashes can be neatly divided between long bursts associated with supernovae and short bursts due to stellar mergers.
(20 December)

Final enrollment data released today
University of California, Berkeley, officials today (Tuesday, Dec. 19) released final enrollment figures for the fall 2006 semester. The data show that more than 23,800 undergraduates and 10,070 graduate students are currently enrolled.
(19 December)

Study shows people compete to be generous
As holiday giving crests, a new study by UC Berkeley and Cornell University researchers shows taht people compete in their giving to win favor and friends.
(19 December)

Two nostrils better than one, researchers show
Do animals use their two nostrils to locate scents in the same way they use two ears to locate sounds? UC Berkeley neuroscientists set out to test that question, using human volunteers on all fours to track a chocolate scent through the grass. The answer is yes.
(18 December)

Richmond Field staffer Veronica Rodriguez's gift for wrapping nets her top prize at national competition
In the five years she's been a part-time gift wrapper at Macy's, Veronica Rodriguez has grown used to working quickly and in front of people — skills she needed to compete in last week's national gift-wrapping contest in New York City. But the competition also challenged less common abilities, like her ingenuity; for example, how do you wrap a life-sized pony?
(14 December)

Plucking comet dust from Stardust collectors
For the past six months, physicist Andrew Westphal has been guarding a treasure trove -- a priceless collection of comet dust captured by the Stardust spacecraft and brought back to Earth earlier this year. Using techniques Westphal and colleagues developed, UC Berkeley and NASA teams have been carefully cutting pieces of dust out of an aerogel collector and doling them out to eager scientists for study.
(14 December)

Bodega lab founding director Cadet Hand has died
Marine biologist and educator Cadet Hammond Hand Jr., who co-founded the University of California's Bodega Marine Laboratory in 1966 and directed it for a quarter of a century, died Nov. 29 at the age of 86.
(13 December)

Researchers barcode DNA of 6,000 fungi species in Venice museum
UC Berkeley researchers are partnering with the Venice Museum of Natural History to build an unprecedented DNA database of its vast fungi collection. More than 6,000 species will be sequenced and analyzed, and then made available to the scientific community.
(13 December)

Le Grande named interim head of student affairs
Harry Le Grande has been named the Berkeley campus’s Interim Vice-Chancellor for Student Affairs, effective Jan. 1. He will lead efforts to provide student- and faculty-support service programs relating to academic development, retention, admissions and financial aid, multicultural diversity, campus outreach, student conduct, residential living, and other student-related matters.
(13 December)

Web marketplace to draw support for student projects
UC Berkeley students with ambitious ideas that could change the world now have a place to go to attract support from venture capitalists and investors. The online marketplace will be a one-stop shop for those interested in supporting students' "big ideas."
(13 December)

THEMIS probes relocate to Florida for Feb. 15 launch
Five space probes designed and built by UC Berkeley physicists have been trucked from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena to Florida to be readied for a Feb. 15 launch, the first five-satellite launch by NASA. The mission, named for the Greek god often called "blind justice," will impartially decide between two competing theories of how the solar wind triggers substorms in the Earth's magnetosphere, which are responsible for the kinetic northern and southern lights.
(11 December)

Risks of exploiting low-quality sources of oil
Alternative sources of oil, such as low-quality tar sands, oil shale and coal, are drawing the attention of nations around the world -- they're abundant and can help nations achieve the security of oil-independence. Energy & Resources Professor Alex Farrell warns, however, that exploiting these sources to make synthetic fuels risks significant environmental damage and presents economic risks as well.
(11 December)

Cal Band reenacts the Big Bang, with direction by Nobelist George Smoot
UC Berkeley astrophysicist George Smoot recruited the Cal Band for a part in the Sunday, Dec. 10 Nobel Prize ceremony in Sweden, at which he was presented the Nobel Prize in Physics. Smoot asked the band to help create some dazzle for the Nobel festivities.
(11 December)

Psychometrics giant William Meredith dies
William M. Meredith, a professor emeritus of psychology whose behind-the-scenes work in psychometrics revolutionized longitudinal studies analysis, died at his El Cerrito home on Monday, Dec. 4. He was 77.
(08 December)

A job that keeps on giving
After eight years at the helm of University Relations, Vice Chancellor Don McQuade steps down this month to return to teaching, research, and writing in the English department. The Berkeleyan sat down with him to elicit his thoughts on the job he's done, why donors give to Cal, and the changing face of philanthropy.
(07 December)

'Percolating' higher-ed questions the focus of Friday symposium
In an era when universities face growing scrutiny on a number of fronts, are existing models of governance up to the task? That's among the central questions to be explored by a distinguished group of academics and policymakers when they meet Friday, Dec. 8, for "Governing the Academy: Who's the Boss?," a symposium sponsored jointly by the Institute of Governmental Studies and the Center for Studies in Higher Education.
(07 December)

A brainy night in Berkeley
If neuroanatomy grad student Aubrey Gilbert's "whirlwind tour of your nervous system" doesn't blow your mind, the opportunity to hold a human brain in your hands just might.
(07 December)

Exporting services opportunities for California
Booming Asian economies offer new growth opportunities for small- and mid-sized service firms in California, say two economists at the Fisher Center for Real Estate and Urban Economics at UC Berkeley.
(07 December)

Bay Area water history, one month at a time
"Mountains to Mouths," a 2007 wall calendar produced jointly by the campus's Water Resources Center Archives and Harmer E. Davis Transportation Library, illustrates the historical development of the intricate network of dams, reservoirs, aqueducts, and pumping stations that delivers high-quality water to millions of thirsty people in the San Francisco Bay Area.
(07 December)

The Joy of Receiving
The advent of the holidays brings with it the need to ponder what gifts our friends and loved ones might desire. Yet who among us hasn't happened on a tantalizing bauble or gotta-have gadget while shopping for others? The Berkeleyan asked a number of people on campus to reflect on what they themselves would like to receive.
(07 December)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(07 December)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(07 December)

Regents vote to certify EIR for southeast campus plan and approve design of student-athlete center
A UC Board of Regents committee certified the environmental impact report for UC Berkeley's Southeast Campus Integrated Projects and approved the design of the Student-Athlete High Performance Center adjacent to Memorial Stadium. The vote serves as final approval from the Regents for the environmental impact report and design of the new center.
(05 December)

Regents to consider Memorial Stadium-area plans
The UC Board of Regents' Committee on Grounds and Buildings will meet via teleconference on Tuesday, Dec. 5, to consider action to certify the environmental impact report for UC Berkeley's Southeast Campus Integrated Projects and approve the design of the Student-Athlete High Performance Center adjacent to Memorial Stadium.
(05 December)

Reducing pollution could increase rice harvests in India, study says
An analysis by researchers at UC Berkeley and UC San Diego found that the combined effects of atmospheric brown clouds and greenhouse gases negatively affected growing conditions for rice in India. The study suggests that reducing the man-made sources of pollution could increase harvest growth.
(04 December)

Urban planning pioneer Melvin Webber dies at 86
Melvin M. Webber, a professor emeritus of city and regional planning and an international authority on city planning and transportation, has died at the age of 86.
(01 December)

New finding points way to foiling anthrax's tricks
Anthrax, when inhaled, is nearly always fatal, in part because the bacteria have a very effective way of stealing iron from human cells in order to reproduce. One trick the bacteria developed to get around the body's defense against such iron theft may be its undoing.
(30 November)

Spotlight on undergraduate outcomes
Ways to better evaluate the education that Berkeley provides its undergraduates took center stage at the fall meeting of the campus Academic Senate on Nov. 14.
(29 November)

A backward glance, a round of applause … and then, the final
The last teaching day of the fall approaches. Here's how some faculty plan to make the most of it.
(29 November)

Regents approve 2007-08 budget proposal
The University of California Board of Regents on Nov. 16 approved a 2007-08 budget proposal that includes new funding for student enrollment growth at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, expansion of research in fields critical to California's competitiveness, restoration of prior cuts to the instructional program, and salary increases for faculty and staff.
(29 November)

The weak linkage between workplace diversity, turnover
Contrary to popular thinking among some diversity consultants, employing workers of many different races has little effect on average turnover in a retail workplace, although employees do quit more often if fewer colleagues are the same race, according to a recently published case study by two professors at the Haas School of Business.
(29 November)

International House director Joe Lurie to step down next June
There have been only three executive directors of International House over the three-quarters of a century since its founding in 1930. Soon a fourth will be named, as current director Joe Lurie, after 19 years of service, steps down in June 2007.
(29 November)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(29 November)

Music professors honored for books
Richard Taruskin and Kate van Orden of the University of California, Berkeley's Music Department have received top honors from the American Musicological Society for their new books -- one the history of Western music, the other on music in early modern France.
(28 November)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(27 November)

Seven faculty members named AAAS fellows
Seven faculty members from the University of California, Berkeley, have been elected fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), bringing the total number of fellows on campus to about 200.
(27 November)

Engineers demonstrate strength of new metal shear wall that could lower construction cost
Engineers pushed a newly designed, metal shear wall to its limits in a seismic test at UC Berkeley's Structural Engineering Research Lab. The panel proved strong enough for use in California and other earthquake-prone regions throughout the world, researchers said
(22 November)

Celebrating Thanksgiving, Berkeley-style
It's a great time for eating, especially if you live in or near Berkeley, the birthplace of the current food revolution. Many on campus are trying to shorten the distance that food travels to their plates, both geographically and cognitively, by learning where what they eat comes from, and who grows or raises it and how.
(16 November)

Boalt Hall prof explores changing demographics of police
At a conference at Berkeley last month on "Police Reform From the Bottom Up," scholars and police leaders from four continents converged to discuss a range of underexplored topics: police unions and police officers as change agents in police reform, the role of black officers in modernizing policing, leadership-sharing in police agencies, and the possibility that workplace democracy could help transform policing.
(16 November)

Bring us the head of Tommy Trojan
Duke Wayne or Gregory Peck? Judge Wapner or Chief Justice Warren?
Hugh Beaumont or "the Beav" himself? Whatever happens in the Golden
Bears' high-stakes meeting with USC this weekend, there are plenty of
reasons Cal deserves to come out on top. Did somebody say "Ron
Ziegler"?
(16 November)

Astronomer Alex Filippenko named Professor of the Year
The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education have named astronomer Alex Filippenko Professor of the Year, lauding his lively teaching style and ability to convey the wonder of the cosmos.
(16 November)

Jay Keasling honored as Scientist of the Year
Discover Magazine's first Scientist of the Year award has gone to Jay Keasling, a UC Berkeley chemical engineer who is hoping to "rebuild life itself."
(15 November)

Study examines state's achievement gaps
Seven years after Sacramento embarked on ambitious and costly school reforms, test scores are leveling off and achievement gaps are growing in some grades, according to a University of California, Berkeley, and Stanford University think tank.
(15 November)

Regents committee defers decision on southeast campus projects until early December
A UC Regents committee voted Tuesday to delay consideration of plans for the southeast corner of the UC Berkeley campus, including construction of a Student-Athlete High Performance Center, saying it needed more time to review late-arriving materials.
(14 November)

Blum Center launches global field initiatives
UC Berkeley's Richard C. Blum Center for Developing Economies on Tuesday announced the selection of its first field projects — the East Africa Healthcare Initiative and the Initiative on Safe Water and Sanitation. Both projects address poor health status, which is both a leading cause and a debilitating impact of global poverty.
(14 November)

Leon Henkin, advocate for diversity in math & science, has died
Leon Henkin, who helped found UC Berkeley's Professional Development Program to nurture the next generation of mathematicians and scientists, has died at 85.
(09 November)

Tours begin of eco-friendly "green apartment"
Empty pizza boxes, beer cans and overflowing garbage is an image many might associate with four college guys in a two-bedroom apartment. But that's not quite the case for UC Berkeley undergraduates Travis Zack, Jonathan Hu, Tim Edgar and Edward Chen, who live in the campus's eco-friendly Green Apartment.
(09 November)

Employees find tending to aging loved ones no easy task
The campus Elder Care program provides caregivers with expertise, guidance, resources, and support.
(08 November)

Exemplars of excellence
The Chancellor's Outstanding Staff Award honors individual staff members and teams whose contributions toward the university's mission of teaching, research, and public service have been noteworthy and significant. The Berkeleyan here highlights nine of this year's recipients, who, collectively, illustrate both the campuswide reach of the awards and the variety of services all of this year's recipients — indeed, each year's recipients — provide to their peers, colleagues, and the campus community.
(08 November)

Grad students to enjoy one-stop resource shopping
Things are on the move in the Graduate Division, where a one-stop service unit — Graduate Services: Appointments, Degrees, and Fellowships — is set to open on Monday, Nov. 20. When it does, grad students will have a single destination — 318 Sproul — instead of three to visit for administrative matters related to their graduate careers at Berkeley.
(08 November)

John Muir, Tin Lizzie, and California Jack
In Past Tents, the Bancroft's Susan Snyder explores the great outdoors in the days before Therm-a-Rest, and finds a world both strange and strangely familiar.
(08 November)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(08 November)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(08 November)

Visiting artist unites campus, Richmond
A project focusing on the beleaguered but proud city of Richmond moves forward Wednesday (Nov. 8) with an interactive, multi-media installation at the University of California, Berkeley, and a potluck dinner forum on campus with students, faculty, Richmond leaders and residents, and others.
(07 November)

Point of View: What issues are important to you in this election?
Berkeley is often pigeonholed as being a bastion of bleeding-heart liberalism, but those who work, study, and teach here know that a range of opinions can be found on campus. Eight students share the ballot issues and topics that mattered the most to them, and why.
(07 November)

New York College Tour
The New Yorker magazine's 2006 College Tour comes to UC Berkeley for three days, starting Monday, Nov. 13.
(07 November)

Novel approach to detoxifying cancer drugs
Anticancer drugs typically have poisonous side-effects, but a new technique that wraps the drug in a protein "hairball" shows promise of reducing these toxic effects and boosting the drug's effectiveness. In tests on mice with colon cancer, the drug attached to a polyester polymer cured 100 percent of them.
(07 November)

Economist David Card wins labor economics honor
David Card, a University of California, Berkeley, economist known for his work in labor and immigration, is a 2006 recipient of the prestigious Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) Award in Labor Economics.
(03 November)

Fulbright scholars on campus and overseas
This year's Fulbright Scholar Program has sent five University of California, Berkeley, faculty members overseas for teaching and research, and brought to campus 24 foreign scholars whose research interests range from Tibeto-Burman linguistics to the regulation of greenhouse gases in North America.
(03 November)

Campus joins state climate registry
As a committment to reduce campus greenhouse gas emissions, UC Berkeley has joined the California Climate Action Registry. As a member, the campus pledges to report its emissions and look for ways to reduce its carbon footpring.
(03 November)

Embryologist William Berg dies at 87
William E. Berg, a professor emeritus of zoology who taught embryology at UC Berkeley for 33 years and retired in 1980, has died at 87 in Stockton, Calif.
(03 November)

Hearst hosts Native American Heritage events
The University of California, Berkeley's Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology will host a series of free lectures, tours, a film and performances during November to celebrate American Indian Heritage Month.
(02 November)

Everyone into the pool?
Ten years after California voters approved Proposition 209, a daylong symposium of UC educators produced reams of evidence documenting its impacts on diversity. But whether or not affirmative action is ever made legal again, some call for UC to address inequities caused by the "tyranny of numbers" in its own admissions process.
(01 November)

Tackling technological truancy
While students have skipped class since time immemorial, some present-day faculty charge that more undergrads than ever are not showing up, with empty seats increasing as the semester progresses. Last week, in the spirit of academic inquiry, the Office of Educational Development, which supports, enhances, and publicizes the teaching efforts of Berkeley faculty, sponsored a forum, "Where Have All the Students Gone?," to examine the topic.
(01 November)

Open enrollment for 2007 benefits now underway
Open enrollment for UC health and other benefits plans runs from Nov. 1 to Nov. 21.
(01 November)

Open to debate: the fuel-saving benefits of ethanol
Is ethanol a useful alternative while other technologies ramp up? Or do its costs already exceed its potential payoff? A new campus center established this year, the Joint Center for Transportation Sustainability Research, will help focus Berkeley's research in the areas of transportation, environment, and sustainability, including biofuels.
(01 November)

A 'poet always on duty'
Haas staffer Dennis Fritzinger's war-related poems see ink a new book of veterans' writing edited by Maxine Hong Kingston.
(01 November)

I-House offers free copies of post-9/11 anthology
In A Vision of Hope — a slim new book published by I-House — 10 essayists describe instances of prejudice and hatred in the wake of 9/11, and how they chose to react so as to "turn ignorance into understanding."
(01 November)

Egyptian papyri arrives on campus
Ancient papyri from an Egyptian excavation conducted for the University of California, Berkeley, more than a century ago have arrived on campus after a circuitous journey worthy of a mystery novel, campus officials announced at a news conference today (Wednesday, Nov. 1).
(01 November)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(01 November)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(01 November)

Cal-Stanford rivalry moves to the kitchen
A month before the 109th Big Game, the age-old Cal-Stanford rivalry moves to the kitchen, with top student chefs competing this Sunday (Nov. 5) not for the Axe, but for the Cleaver in the first-ever "Big Cook-off."
(01 November)

Election experts
With the Nov. 7 mid-term elections in sight, University of California, Berkeley, experts are available to weigh in on a number of related issues, including stem cell research, immigration, minimum wage initiatives, taxes and California's controversial ballot propositions.
(01 November)

UC Berkeley: EIR on southeast campus projects released
Moving forward on its master plan for the southeast corner of campus, the University of California, Berkeley, today (Tuesday, Oct. 31) released the final environmental impact report on the overall program including the proposed new Student Athlete High Performance Center.
(31 October)

Photoswitches could restore sight to blind retinas
The major cause of blindness in this country is the death of rods and cones in the retina, a disease called macular degeneration. A possible new therapy -- giving the gift of sight to other retinal cells -- received a boost this month by NIH's nanomedicine initiative, which awarded UC Berkeley scientists $6 million to pursue the technique.
(31 October)

Open letter to UCLA and Cal football fans
In a letter to the UCLA and UC Berkeley communities, UCLA Acting Chancellor Norman Abrams and UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau encourage fans attending the Nov. 4 football game between the two schools to keep the contest a safe, positive experience for everyone.
(31 October)

MadPhysics cofounder Afrooz Family enters Berkeley with a bang
Afrooz Family likes to blow things up. But he's no bomber, just the cofounder of MadPhysics.com, an educational website that features lots of pyrotechnic experiments. Afrooz also likes to create things, such as a software "widget" he built over the summer that makes it easy for Mac users to keep up with UC Berkeley's wealth of news and events.
(30 October)

Chancellor names Scott Biddy new vice chancellor for University Relations
UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau has appointed Scott Biddy as vice chancellor for University Relations, following a nationwide search. Biddy, currently the associate vice chancellor for University Relations at UC Berkeley, will lead both fundraising and public affairs for the campus. His appointment is effective Dec. 1.
(30 October)

Blue-chip progressive panel issues call for values-based politicking
Values, not issues, are what the Democratic Party should be talking about in this election and beyond, according to the panel of progressive movers and shakers who addressed a packed Wheeler Hall on campus Thursday night. The "What Are Americans Voting For?" participants were Joan Blades, cofounder of MoveOn.org; Markos Moulitsas, founder of DailyKos, the most-read political blog in the world; George Lakoff, UC Berkeley cognitive science professor and best-selling author of several treatises on effective political language; and Berkeley political science professor Paul Pierson, author of an influential book about how the Republican Party rose to power.
(27 October)

Lawrence Levine, esteemed history scholar, dies at age 73
Lawrence W. Levine, a highly influential history professor who taught at the University of California, Berkeley, for more than three decades, died on Monday (Oct. 23) at his home in Berkeley of cancer. He was 73.
(26 October)

Many eyes on the pension prize
In the second of two articles examining the pending restart of employee contributions to the UC Retirement Plan, the Berkeleyan follows up on last week's explanation of the UC Regents' proposal with a survey of arguments against it.
(26 October)

Of God, justice, and disunited states
Robert Bellah, the Berkeley emeritus best-known for 1985's Habits of the Heart, remembers when "religion and politics" meant Rev. Martin Luther King, Rev. William Sloane Coffin, and divinity students sitting in for civil rights -- a commitment to social justice he traces back to the Hebrew prophets' "ringing opposition to oppression and poverty."
(26 October)

Jason Moran's adventurous imprint
The pianist, who counts Egon Schiele and Alban Berg among his influences, is coming to campus to deliver 'a hard dosage of music.'
(26 October)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(26 October)

Location change for Friday's Prop 209 conference
The location of the final session of a conference on Proposition 209 sponsored by the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law (Boalt) Hall on Friday (Oct. 27) has been changed. That session, the Presidents Roundtable, will take place on the university's Clark Kerr campus, Krutch Theatre, 2601 Warring St., Berkeley.
(26 October)

Blake Spahr, emeritus professor of German, dies at age 82
Blake Lee Spahr, an emeritus professor of German at the University of California, Berkeley, who was an internationally known scholar and editor of German Baroque and comparative Arthurian literature, died on Sept. 29 in a Walnut Creek, Calif., nursing home at the age of 82.
(25 October)

Pollinators help one-third of world's crop production, says new study
Pollinators such as bees, birds and bats affect 35 percent of the world's food production, increasing the output of 87 of the leading food crops worldwide, finds a new study co-authored by a UC Berkeley conservation biologist. The study is the first global estimate of crop production that is reliant upon animal pollination. It comes one week after a National Research Council (NRC) report detailed the troubling decline in populations of key North American pollinators.
(25 October)

UC Berkeley at forefront of stem cell ethics interchange
Rarely has a medical revolution captured the hopes and horrors of so many as has stem cell research. While many college campuses reflect this ethical divide, UC Berkeley's new Science, Technology and Society Center is bringing together scientists and humanities and social sciences scholars in a unique effort to promote both innovation and values in bioengineering.
(23 October)

Stretching bone marrow stem cells pushes them towards becoming blood vessels
When stretched, a type of adult stem cell taken from bone marrow can be nudged towards becoming the type of tissue found in blood vessels, according to a new study by UC Berkeley bioengineers. The findings highlight the importance of mechanical forces in stem cell differentiation.
(23 October)

Campus custodians and current labor issues
Union custodians at the University of California have been rallying on campuses to raise awareness about their pay, especially at UC Berkeley, UC Santa Cruz and UC Santa Barbara, and are asking for an increase in their hourly wages.
(23 October)

"Dark times": Eric Schlosser, Michael Pollan discuss a nation of fast food, cheap labor, and profit-driven compromises
Investigative journalist Eric Schlosser was on campus Oct. 18 to promote a sneak preview of director Richard Linklater's newest film, "Fast Food Nation," a dramatic adaptation of Schlosser's 2001 best-selling, nonfiction exposι that they wrote together. Michael Pollan, who teaches journalism at UC Berkeley and is the author of this year's chart-topping dietgeist work, "The Omnivore's Dilemma," joined Schlosser for a post-screening chat about the state of food production in this country.
(20 October)

Florence Fang gift to East Asian Library
University of California, Berkeley's Chancellor Robert Birgeneau today (Thursday, Oct. 19) announced the receipt of a $3 million donation from businesswoman Florence Fang, former publisher of the San Francisco Examiner, closing the funding gap for construction of the campus's new C.V. Starr East Asian Library and Chang-Lin Tien Center for East Asian Studies.
(19 October)

Gift to campus will create Coleman Fung Risk Management Research Center
UC Berkeley alumnus Coleman Fung has given the campus a $5 million gift to establish a new campus center devoted to accelerating the development of risk management-based business practices and tools. Fung is the CEO and founder of Open Link Financial Inc.
(19 October)

Amgen Foundation gives campus $1 million grant for undergrad science research program
The Amgen Foundation is providing UC Berkeley with a $1 million grant that will give undergraduates pursuing graduate degrees and careers in science the opportunity to do fully-funded, hands-on research each summer.
(19 October)

Law school establishes new loan forgiveness program
Officials at the UC Berkeley School of Law (Boalt Hall) have established a new loan forgiveness program for new graduates working in public service careers that provide relatively low pay. Graduates can apply to have up to $100,000 in loans paid for by the law school.
(19 October)

Loose-leaf legacy
Wallace Berman (1926-76) was a poet and artist, but as a new Berkeley Art Museum exhibit ("Semina Culture: Wallace Berman and His Circle") demonstrates, he was also a creative mentor to a group of mid-20th-century artists, poets, and writers known as the Beats.
(18 October)

Birgeneau: 'We serve California extraordinarily well'
In a wide-ranging Berkeleyan interview, Chancellor Birgeneau revisits the themes limned in his inaugural address 18 months ago: leadership, connection, and inclusion. Progress has been made in all three areas, he says, while his overall priority for the campus remains unchanged: fulfilling Berkeley's public mission while maintaining our preeminence in teaching and research.
(18 October)

The holiday's over
In the first of two articles examining the planned restart of employee contributions to the UC Retirement Plan, the Berkeleyan details the thinking behind the UC Regents' proposal to end the long-running "contribution holiday" that coincided with the investment boom of the 1990s. If UCRP is to maintain its fiscal health -- upon which pension recipients depend for their promised benefit -- then employees must, the Regents say, begin to make payroll contributions once again, starting in 2007.
(18 October)

Creating a 'testing ground' for social-service leaders
Designed in collaboration with the campus and Bay Area counties, UC Berkeley Extension's innovative executive-development program has just entered its 13th year of training new leaders in vital social services.
(18 October)

Would Proposition 1D fund 'essentials' or 'fluff'?
If approved by California voters on Nov. 7, Proposition 1D would provide UC Berkeley with $28.6 million for improvements to campus facilities.
(18 October)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(18 October)

Nicholas Howe, scholar of Anglo-Saxon England, dies at age 53
Nicholas Howe, a professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley, and a leading scholar of Anglo-Saxon England, died of complications.
(12 October)

How to get a handle on BPA
. . . with a little help from your friends. Members of new staff organization share techniques, tips, and best practices about business process analysis, a methodology for looking at work from the perspective of who does what, and in what order.
(11 October)

Showcasing California design
The rich tradition of California architecture and landscape architecture, and a stellar archival collection right here on campus, shine brightly in a new series of scholarly monographs, the Berkeley|Design|Books.
(11 October)

All the campus a stage?
To stimulate dialogue on the dynamics of a diverse workplace in an engaging and thought-provoking format, the Berkeley campus will host a series of interactive theater workshops the week of Oct. 23.
(11 October)

Elaine Kim to talk writing at Doe
Author and editor Elaine Kim, a pioneer in Asian American literature and women's studies, will be featured in the Berkeley Writers at Work series.
(11 October)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(11 October)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(11 October)

Delegates from China to visit UC Berkeley for new innovation and intellectual property rights program
About 20 judges, policymakers, and enterprise executives from China are convening at the University of California, Berkeley's Haas School of Business for a unique new training program on innovation and intellectual property rights.
(10 October)

Tropics source of much of world's biodiversity
Since the 19th century, naturalists and explorers have noted the much greater abundance of species in the tropics compared to higher latitudes, such as North America and Europe. Paleontologists from UC Berkeley, UC San Diego and the University of Chicago have now found out why -- the tropics are a hothouse for new species, which then gradually spread out towards the poles.
(05 October)

China scholarship, writ large
The Berkeley China Initiative, like China itself, is "crossing the river by feeling for the stones," says sociologist Tom Gold. But the year-old campus initiative's long-term strategy is based on building bridges.
(04 October)

Teaching tribal teens the write stuff
Luisa Armijo created a writing-immersion program to help Native youth feel at home on the page — and fuel their dreams of college life.
(04 October)

A tradition firmly made: recalling those we've lost
The campus memorial ceremony has, for all its gravitas, become as much a part of Berkeley's annual cycle of events as Charter Day or the Big Game.
(04 October)

Renowned cosmologist James Peebles to deliver Hitchcock Lectures
One of the world's foremost cosmologists, P. James E. Peebles, will deliver two lectures next week — exploring what our universe is like "in the large" and how it got that way — as part of the campus's Hitchcock Lectures series.
(04 October)

How do faculty decide where to publish?
According to a study conducted by researchers affiliated with the Center for Studies in Higher Education (CSHE), faculty are wary of electronic-publishing venues primarily because they are associated — in their minds, if not always in reality — with a lack of quality control through peer review.
(04 October)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(04 October)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(04 October)

Astrophysicist George Smoot wins Nobel Prize
Cosmologist George F. Smoot, who led a team that obtained the first images of the infant universe - findings that confirmed the predictions of the Big Bang theory - won the 2006 Nobel Prize in Physics today (Tuesday, Oct. 3).
(03 October)

Berkeley's Nobel tradition: George Smoot becomes Berkeley's 20th laureate
The announcement of George Smoot's Nobel Prize in physics brings the total number of faculty laureates at UC Berkeley to 20. In all, 23 UC Berkeley alumni have received the prize. An introduction to these scholars and their discoveries follows.
(03 October)

UC Berkeley & LBL scientist George Smoot awarded Nobel Prize in Physics
George F. Smoot, who discovered the faint signs of structure in the early universe, has won the 2006 Nobel Prize in Physics.
(03 October)

Cal math grad Andrew Fire wins 2006 Nobel Prize in medicine
Andrew Z. Fire, the Stanford University geneticist who shared the 2006 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, is an alumnus of UC Berkeley's mathematics department, having whizzed through Cal in a mere three years before moving on to graduate school at the age of 19.
(02 October)

New executive director announced for Blum Center for Developing Economies
George Scharffenberger is the new executive director of the campus's Blum Center for Developing Economies, which was set up in March as a resource to combat global poverty and hunger. The UC Berkeley alumnus has more than 30 years' experience managing international development projects and says he knows the "transformative role" that Cal students will play in poverty-focused efforts around the world.
(02 October)

Bring the arts into the classroom (or students to the arts)
A new online resource guide is geared towards helping educators enrich their course offerings with the arts.
(28 September)

A little caring makes a big difference
The Cal Independent Scholars Network, a fledgling program created and run by campus staffers, offers supplies and mentoring to students who lack parental financial support.
(28 September)

Focusing on high-risk teens and their communities
With two federally funded research projects and a speaker's series launching next week, a newly created campus entity based at the Institute for the Study of Social Change will probe the causes and prevention of youth violence.
(28 September)

Haas ranked No. 5 by Wall Street Journal
The Haas School of Business ranked No. 5 in this year's Wall Street Journal national ranking of full-time MBA programs, published on Sept. 20.
(28 September)

Study highlights UC as tech-transfer powerhouse
Among universities worldwide, the University of California system averaged the highest level of licensing income annually — almost $100 million — from its research discoveries in biotechnology, according to a new think-tank study of biotech-knowledge transfer.
(28 September)

Friday at noon: A pause to honor the past year's losses
On Friday, Sept. 29, the Berkeley campus will gather for its fifth annual memorial service to honor those of its own who have died during the past year.
(28 September)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(28 September)

Regents, President Dynes let the sunshine in
New and revised compensation guidelines were announced last week by President Robert Dynes and the UC Board of Regents, including plans for the public posting of salary data, not just for top managers but for all UC employees
(27 September)

UC Berkeley offers courses and symposia through Google Video
In an innovative move to share its intellectual treasures with the public, UC Berkeley announced today (Tuesday, Sept. 26) that it is delivering educational content, including course lectures and symposia, free of charge through Google Video.
(26 September)

Freshman's quest for postage stamp gets heartening response, but his health declines
Four months after making an unusual pitch to the U.S. postmaster general, UC Berkeley freshman Gideon Sofer is making progress in his campaign for a stamp highlighting inflammatory bowel disease, and in spreading awareness of the disorder. But his personal fight against the disease is facing a setback.
(25 September)

UC's Berkeley and Davis campuses earn Sloan award for family-friendly policies
UC Berkeley and UC Davis have received a $250,000 Alfred P. Sloan Award to expand programs supporting career flexibility for tenured and tenure-track faculty. The Sloan Award for Faculty Career Flexibility, announced Sept. 25, recognizes research universities for their leadership and accomplishments in implementing groundbreaking policies that enhance flexible career paths for faculty.
(25 September)

Materiel girl, materiel world
Never in the footlights but always on the scene, props manager Jean Fichtenkort has made her mark on campus theater productions since 1989.
(21 September)

War on terror's biggest casualty is America, say George Soros, Mark Danner, others in forum
Participants in a forum held to mark the fifth anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks said that the war on terrorism has not only been ineffective in its goal, but it has cost America its self-image and its system of checks and balances. However, there are a few encouraging signs that the trend may be reversing.
(21 September)

Schlock today, dissertation tomorrow
Movies and TV, says the longtime director of the Media Resources Center, "have given us our social, political, and ethical cues, our basic ways of interacting with the world." Which is why Gary Handman has turned the basement of Moffitt Library into a treasure trove of moving images ranging from Stan Brakhage to Congorilla.
(20 September)

For fans of adventurous radio, KALX delivers the unexpected
Always more exciting than commercial radio, the campus station
prides itself on serving up a wildly interesting musical mix.
(20 September)

Powerful people take more risks
Cameron Anderson, an associate professor at the Haas School of Business, has co-authored a paper demonstrating a link between a sense of power and risk-taking behavior.
(20 September)

UC Regents go 'beyond the letter of the law' in revising meeting rules
Beginning with this week's meeting, compensation for certain senior officials will be discussed in open session.
(20 September)

What to do about the flu
For the moment, there's no influenza pandemic affecting humans anywhere in the world. Experts, however, predict one will occur somewhere, sometime down the road, and Berkeley isn't waiting idly for an outbreak.
(20 September)

Researcher wins $2.6 million NIH Pioneer Award
For the third year in a row, NIH has chosen a dozen "high-risk" research projects -- high-risk in the sense that the research is more speculative than most research funded by the federal government -- to receive $2.5 million over five years. One of the awardees is UC Berkeley professor Rebecca Heald, who will try to find out how cells scale up or down their internal "organs" as they get larger or smaller.
(20 September)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(20 September)

Aviation engineer wins MacArthur 'genius' award
Claire Tomlin, a UC Berkeley engineer studying hybrid control systems to address problems in aircraft flight control and collision avoidance, has won one of this year's MacArthur Foundation "Genius" Fellowships.
(20 September)

Frederick Wakeman, Chinese history scholar, dies at age 68
Frederic Evans Wakeman Jr., an eminent University of California, Berkeley, emeritus professor of Chinese history, died at his home in Lake Oswego, Ore., on Sept. 14. He was 68.
(19 September)

Campus hosts college fair for prospective students
Representatives from more than 60 colleges and universities from across the country will be available to talk to middle school and high school students and their parents on Saturday, Sept. 30, during a college fair hosted by the University of California, Berkeley.
(18 September)

Tropical thunderstorms affect space weather
Persistent rainy weather in the tropics has a surprisingly large effect on space weather occurring high in the electrically-charged upper atmosphere, known as the ionosphere, according to new results from NASA satellites reported by UC Berkeley physicists.
(14 September)

Off the clock, but not at rest
Being a Berkeley staffer already makes a person smarter than your average bear — but we're also a talented lot. Just scrape the surface and you'll discover colleagues whose off-hours are devoted to more than keeping tabs on Suri and Survivor.
(14 September)

Slow brain waves play key role in coordinating complex activity
Even simple tasks require the coordinated action of hundreds of thousands, if not billions, of brain cells, but how these cells communicate is a complete mystery. New research, however, suggests that low-frequency brain waves may be the key. Theta waves in separate regions of the brain lock in phase to coordinate their activity, essentially tuning in the high-frequency waves that transfer information.
(14 September)

Learning to love the bomb
This was to be the season of gold for the Golden Bears... and then, suddenly, it wasn't. Or is it? One Berkeley alum remembers the bad old days of Cal football, and offers some much-needed perspective on Tennessee, Minnesota, and what it means to be a true-blue fan of the blue-and-gold.
(13 September)

Helen Seaborg, 1917-2006
Helen Griggs Seaborg, wife of former chancellor Glenn Seaborg, died Aug. 29, of pneumonia.
(13 September)

Publication
Robert Bellah, Berkeley's Elliott Professor of Sociology Emeritus, has written widely during a career spanning five decades, including 30 years here on the Berkeley campus. Those not yet familiar with the range of his scholarship can catch up with The Robert Bellah Reader, a soon-to-be-published collection of 28 hand-picked essays on such topics as "Religion and the Legitimation of the American Republic," "Flaws in the Protestant Code: Theological Roots of American Individualism," and "Religious Pluralism and Religious Truth."
(13 September)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(13 September)

Researchers launch online wildfire risk assessment tool
Researchers at UC Berkeley's Center for Fire Research and Outreach have launched a new set of interactive online tools to help homeowners, community leaders and researchers assess the risk of wildfire damage to their homes and communities. The interactive site, officially called the Fire Information Engine Toolkit, can be found at http://firecenter.berkeley.edu/toolkit.
(13 September)

Newest whiz kids more than just super-smart
Each year, a handful of child prodigies enters UC Berkeley after skipping grades and wowing admissions officials with their academic prowess. Meet Jay Chong Wang, Dheeptha Baskaran and Amar Gupta, three of five advanced learners who have joined this fall's freshman class.
(12 September)

Three arrests made following incident involving apparent marijuana-laced cookies
University of California, Berkeley, police this morning (Thursday, Sept. 7) have arrested three individuals on felony drug charges following an incident in which approximately a dozen students were briefly hospitalized after consuming what is suspected to be marijuana-laced cookies.
(07 September)

Seeing two figures in coordinated action helps brain pick out movements of one
A new study by UC Berkeley vision scientists finds that the human visual system is better able to discriminate the movements of a single person when his or her actions are coordinated in a meaningful way with a second individual. This is especially important when the view is somehow obscured, providing insight into how accurately we can interpret what we see from grainy security cameras.
(07 September)

Coming attractions for fall 2006: War on terrorism, Katrina, the '60s, and lots of lighter fare
This fall's lineup of campus events includes three major conferences devoted to America's war on terrorism, to be held on or around September 11; another trio of events marks Hurricane Katrina's first anniversary. But there's plenty of lighter entertainment as well — Van Morrison, Sufjan Stevens, Savion Glover, the Peony Pavilion, and plenty of lectures, films, performances, exhibits and conferences sure to be of wide interest.
(06 September)

$100,000 in prizes for students' "Big Ideas"
A new competition has awarded $100,000 in prizes to teams of UC Berkeley students with innovative ideas to solve problems at the local as well as global level. The "Bears Breaking Boundaries" competition awarded funds to projects tackling malaria in India, refugee issues in Sudan and Berkeley's own municipal waste.
(06 September)

Strong enrollment demand for Blum Center's inaugural course offering
If demand for its first course offering — Ananya Roy's eight-week class on global poverty — is any indication, Berkeley's fledgling Richard C. Blum Center for Developing Economies is off to a flying start.
(06 September)

Constitution Day, at Berkeley, coincides with anniversary of terrorist attacks
This year's commemoration, which begins Monday, September 11, will focus on post-9/11 civil-liberties concerns.
(06 September)

An uphill boost for disabled students
In fulfilling the first elements of a comprehensive plan to improve access for disabled students, the campus has made life easier not only for them but for others who navigate its roadways, paths, stairs, and hallways.
(06 September)

Obituary
Lily Misono Culver — who served for two decades as administrative assistant for the campus's Subject A Program (progenitor to the College Writing Programs) — passed away unexpectedly on July 28, one day after being diagnosed with cancer.
(06 September)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community
(06 September)

Annual reports on jobs, wages
An annual jobs report from the University of California, Berkeley's Center for Labor Research and Education doesn't offer much for workers to celebrate.
(05 September)

Lunch Poems' international lineup
The Lunch Poems public poetry reading series at the University of California, Berkeley, enters its 10th season this fall with an international lineup of acclaimed poets whose musings range from Aboriginal culture to hyper-reality, from war to the Beats, and from language loss to Zen Buddhism.
(31 August)

It's a relative thing . . .
Growing up is hard, but letting go can be harder still. Soothing the fears of angst-ridden freshman parents -- and easing the process of growing up for their Berkeley students -- is just part of the job at the Cal Parents helpline.
(30 August)

Tapping into a hidden workforce
The Retiree Work Opportunities program and website connect campus hiring managers with temporary staff who already know their way around: retirees from the Berkeley campus, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and the UC Office of the President.
(30 August)

Gulf Coast projects for the long haul
Three Berkeley-based projects in New Orleans aim to build ongoing relationships in an area at times overrun, to the dismay of many Katrina survivors, with short-term or even one-time volunteer visits.
(30 August)

Preserving Crescent City culture
Berkeley-led research team gives 'voice' to displaced Katrina survivors through oral narratives, poetry, and prose.
(30 August)

The celluloid detective
Keeping the Bay Area's most demanding movie audience satisfied is a job that PFA curator Susan Oxtoby relishes.
(30 August)

Obituary
Doris L. White, Supervisor of Physical Education Emeritus, passed away on July 25 following a short illness.
(30 August)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(30 August)

X-ray flashes tied to low-end massive stars
Only in the past few years have astronomers tied mysterious gamma-ray bursts to massive stellar explosions that lead to formation of a black hole. Observations of a recent supernova extend this to the lower limit of such massive stars, associating these low-end hypernovae with weaker flashes of X rays qualitatively similar to gamma-ray bursts.
(30 August)

Wild bees make honey bees better pollinators
When honey bees interact with wild native bees, they are up to five times more efficient in pollinating sunflowers than when native bees are not present, according to a new study by a pair of researchers at the University of California, Berkeley and UC Davis.
(28 August)

Point of view: What advice do you have for incoming students?
As the class of 2006 sweated in the hot sun outside the Greek Theater last May, waiting for Commencement Convocation, we asked the new graduates to share a bit of their hard-earned wisdom. Here are all the little — and big — things they wished someone had told them back when they first arrived at Berkeley.
(28 August)

Heading back to school
With big diversity plans and record private donations, UC Berkeley is back in full bloom. Classes begin Monday with thousands of new students navigating the transition to life at a top-ranking college campus.
(28 August)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(24 August)

Obituary
Loring Lamon Hill, who had worked on campus for Physical Plant-Campus Services (PPCS) since 1994, was shot and killed on July 12 in the Richmond neighborhood where he grew up. He was 39.
(24 August)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(24 August)

Student facts at a glance
A look at the fall 2006 incoming class at UC Berkeley by the numbers.
(23 August)

Chancellor Birgeneau on UC Berkeley diversity initiatives
An excerpt of Chancellor Robert Birgeneau's remarks at an Aug. 23 press conference announcing two new initiatives — one academic research and the other campus administrative — to focus expertise on issues of diversity, inclusion and multiculturalism.
(23 August)

Vice chancellor for equity and inclusion, a new post, to join campus leadership team
A new cabinet-level position -- vice chancellor for equity and inclusion -- plus a trio of new diversity-related research projects and a record-breaking fundraising year were announced by Chancellor Robert Birgeneau at a press briefing Wednesday in California Hall.
(23 August)

Student Journal: Rain, bucket baths, and goodbyes
Our Malawi student correspondent, Jennifer Browning, visits Liwonde National Park, enjoys her last few pre-dawn bucket baths, and tells what she's learned from her summer doing fieldwork in Africa.
(23 August)

Chancellor announces record fundraising year
The University of California, Berkeley, has set a new record for private support, with alumni, parents and friends contributing $347.6 million in the 2005-06 fiscal year.
(23 August)

H. peroxide sensor could aid security
A new family of molecules used to detect hydrogen peroxide and other reactive chemicals in living cells could be a useful addition to anti-terrorist arsenals.
(23 August)

Engineers create gecko-inspired high-friction micro-fibers
Inspired by the remarkable hairs that allow geckos to hang single-toed from sheer walls and scamper along ceilings, a team of researchers led by engineers at UC Berkeley has created an array of synthetic micro-fibers that uses very high friction to support loads on smooth surfaces. The fibers, packed 42 million per square centimeter, each measured a mere 20 microns long and 0.6 microns in diameter, or about 100 times thinner than a human hair.
(22 August)

Ant jaws break speed record, propel insects into air, biologists find
A research team led by a UC Berkeley biologist has clocked the speed at which the trap-jaw ant closes its mandibles at 78 to 145 miles per hour - the fastest recorded self-powered predatory strike in the animal kingdom. The ants fire their mandibles with such accelerations that when they strike a hard surface, the forces generated are strong enough to propel their bodies through the air.
(21 August)

As competing rankings abound, U.S. News again picks Berkeley as top public school
U.S.News & World Report released its annual rankings of institutions of higher education on Friday, and once again the magazine ranked UC Berkeley as the best public university in the nation. But with so many conflicting sets of rankings circulating in the media, the NewsCenter has assembled a selection of recent evaluations for your statistical enlightenment.
(18 August)

Residence hall newcomers must learn online risks
Thousands of students moving into residence halls have a big incentive to learn about the risks of social networking sites: Their in-room Internet connections won't be activated until they do.
(17 August)

Student Journal: A personal and a professional encounter with the Malawian healthcare system
Student correspondent Jennifer Browning reports on avoiding malaria — despite the best efforts of endless mosquitoes and of an over-eager medical staff — and experiencing some emotionally taxing fieldwork in Malawi.
(17 August)

Chester O'Konski, early biophysical chemist, dies at 85
Chester T. O'Konski professor emeritus of chemistry who was one of the first chemists to study nucleic acids and proteins using physical chemistry methods, died at his home ion Aug. 2. He was 85.
(16 August)

New study links higher income with lower disability rates
Numerous studies have already established the link between extreme poverty and poor health, but a new study led by a public health researcher at UC Berkeley has found that health disparities exist even between those with higher incomes. The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, found that people at 600 percent of poverty have greater odds of disability than people at 700 percent of poverty.
(16 August)

Spacecraft to view sun in STEREO
A pair of spacecraft scheduled for launch on Aug. 31 will give NASA and UC Berkeley researchers their first stereoscopic pictures of the giant explosions on the sun known as coronal mass ejections. The twin STEREO spacecraft will photograph these explosions and measure the electron and ion winds at two spots in Earth's orbit in hopes of understanding how they are produced and predicting their effects on our planet.
(16 August)

Global warming cap can stimulate CA economy, report says
A new UC Berkeley report delivered to state legislators on Aug. 16 finds that returning California greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020, as envisioned by pending global warming legislation, can boost the annual Gross State Product (GSP) by $60 billion and create 17,000 new jobs.
(16 August)

Khyentse Foundation's $1 million gift paves the way for distinguished professorship in Tibetan Buddhism
The University of California, Berkeley will establish a distinguished professorship in Tibetan Buddhism, thanks to a $1 million endowment from Khyentse Foundation.
(15 August)

Telemedicine eye care benefits state's underserved residents
Optometrists at University of California, Berkeley, are working with doctors at community clinics throughout California's Central Valley to provide eye exams for thousands of low income diabetic patients.
(14 August)

Campus police target alcohol-related problems near campus
With a new school year about to begin, University of California, Berkeley, police are stepping up their efforts to curb alcohol-related crimes and other problems on and around the campus. Their plans for the fall semester, which starts Tuesday, Aug. 22, include decoy operations designed to reduce underage drinking.
(14 August)

Student Journal Paris: An interview, the last cafι, and farewells
In her final dispatch from Paris, our student correspondent Gene Tempest meets a pajama-clad artist, checks out some colorful Parisian graffiti, and drops in at a Hemingway-esque cafι.
(10 August)

Chancellor's Community Partnership Award winners announced
Fifteen projects to improve the quality of life in Berkeley have been awarded $200,000 in grants from the Chancellor's Community Partnership Fund, a special fund set up this year by Chancellor Birgeneau. It encourages new and creative partnerships between East Bay community groups and the University of California, Berkeley, that produce positive change in the community.
(09 August)

Hearst dusts off corkscrew collection
At a museum famous for its ancient Egyptian collection, Central and South American textiles and Native American basketry, a 1,500-piece corkscrew collection -- including some pieces topped by Scottie dogs, antlers and even a devil's skull -- might seem a little, well, twisted.
(09 August)

Perspective: The odds of economic meltdown
With interest rates and oil prices rising and consumers spending beyond their means, we may be headed for recession – and worse, Berkeley economist Brad DeLong writes in a piece from Salon.com
(07 August)

Study addresses gender, patents in academia
Women life scientists in higher education patent their work at a rate of 40 percent of their male peers, according to a new article co-authored by Waverly Ding, an assistant professor at the University of California, Berkeley's Haas School of Business. The article appears in today's (Aug. 4) issue of Science magazine.
(04 August)

Avid astronomer, teacher David Cudaback has died
For more than 30 years, David Cudaback was a fixture of the astronomy department and a role model to undergraduates, thanks in part to a teaching lab he established and which is now named after him.
(03 August)

NSF funds $16 million synthetic biology center
The National Science Foundation has given UC Berkeley $16 million to start a new center that will make biological organisms easier to engineer, transforming the biotechnology, high-tech, pharmaceutical and chemical industries by providing less expensive drugs and fuels, novel materials, biological sensors and replacement organs from stem cells.
(03 August)

Grant helps expand UC Natural Reserve outreach
A successful Tahoe-area literacy program for kids learning English will expand to the Santa Barbara area thanks to a grant from the Pacific Forest and Watershed Lands Stewardship Council. The program, operated by UC Berkeley's Sagehen Creek Field Station, will be able to help kids near UC Santa Barbara's Sedgwick Reserve.
(02 August)

New images of Jupiter's red spots
Observing with the Keck Telescopes in Hawaii, UC Berkeley astronomer Imke de Pater snapped new pictures of Jupiter's Great Red Spot as its smaller rival, Red Spot Jr., cruised by.
(01 August)

Stardust@home launches Aug. 1
The Stardust@home project, which enlists the public to search for tiny pieces of interstellar dust in a relative ocean of aerogel collector, launches August 1.
(31 July)

Mars' dust storms may produce peroxide snow
ars is known for its planet-wide dust storms, which often obscure the surface for months at a time. Now UC Berkeley researchers say these storms could generate oxides, such as peroxide, in sufficient quantities that they would form snow near the ground, killing any life on the surface.
(31 July)

Mosquito spray increases toxicity of pyrethroids in creek, study finds
A relatively benign compound contained in a widely used group of insecticides can mix with and increase the toxicity of existing pesticides in the environment, according to a new study led by UC Berkeley biologists. Based upon these findings, regulators should not only consider the toxicity of individual active ingredients in a product, but also how ingredients may interact with other chemicals in the environment, the researchers said.
(27 July)

Student Journal / Making friends, learning about HIV/AIDS attitudes, and finding remote beauty
In getting acquainted with the children in a Malawian village, student correspondent Jennifer Browning learns that attitudes toward sex and AIDS differ greatly in diffrerent countries. She also finds beauty and great generosity amid the region's poverty.
(24 July)

Berkeley grapples with high cost of housing in competition for faculty talent
UC Berkeley competes with the top private universities for the best faculty talent, but does so with a handicap, writes Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost George W. Breslauer. We seek to attract faculty to a region in which housing prices are among the most expensive in the nation. Our housing assistance program is less attractive than those of our competitors and is a problem that must be solved, he asserts.
(21 July)

Egalitarian at the gates
Helping economically disadvantaged Californians to get an advanced education is "something I've always wanted to do," says Richard Black, associate vice chancellor for admissions and enrollment. Now, after 23 years at Berkeley — where he arrived in 1983 as the campus's financial-aid director — he's calling it a career.
(19 July)

When bachelorhood was taxed
Studying gay life in colonial America, Boalt Hall librarian Bill Benemann found his research hampered by the paucity of the historical record - the result of what he calls an "imperative of silence" about homosexuality permeating our culture.
(19 July)

Postdoc foresees 'equitable learning' for deaf students
Deaf from birth, postdoc Marlon Kuntze studies distinctions between many of those who master American Sign Language early in life and those who learn it later.
(19 July)

Reading, writing, 'rithmetic … and research
Undergrads learn about the fourth 'R' first-hand in summer lab-based programs.
(19 July)

Fresno's Raymond named Human Resources AVC
Jeannine Raymond has been appointed assistant vice chancellor for human resources effective July 14.
(19 July)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(19 July)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(19 July)

Perspective: Sandy Tolan writes on the continuing catastrophe in Gaza
Sandy Tolan provides a perspective on the catastrophe that never ends in Gaza. Tolan is the director of the Project on International Reporting at UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism, and the author of "The Lemon Tree: An Arab, A Jew, and the Heart of the Middle East."
(18 July)

Robert Kerley, former UC Berkeley vice chancellor for administration and a mentor to many, dies at age 86
Robert Kerley, former vice chancellor for administration, died July 7 at his home in Walnut Creek, Calif., of congestive heart disease. He was 86.
(17 July)

Student Journal: The beginning of research and the end of the World Cup
Our Paris correspondent Gene Tempest visits the ENSAD, known as the Arts-dιco, an art school that was the center of poster production in 1968; a research library; and a gay rights protest; and ruminates on France's World Cup loss.
(17 July)

UC Berkeley recognized with state's top energy efficiency award
UC Berkeley was one of three recipients of the Flex Your Power Award, California's top energy efficiency award. Vice Chancellor Nathan Brostrom accepted the award from Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on behalf of the campus.
(13 July)

Robin Lakoff tells why the Constitution is no place for marriage
UC Berkeley linguistics professor Robin Lakoff says that definitions of marriage have no more place in the Constitution than poems or shopping lists. "National constitutions are not appropriate places for establishing who, in a relationship, does the dishes. Nor are they any more appropriate for determining who can marry whom," she argues in this op-ed.
(11 July)

Professor emeritus Irving Kaplansky dies at 89
Irving Kaplansky, a UC Berkeley professor emeritus of mathematics, former director of the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute in the city of Berkeley and an authority on algebra, died in his sleep at his home in Sherman Oaks, Calif., on June 25. He was 89.
(10 July)

Student Journal: Arriving in Paris, and glimpsing the ghosts of protests past
Gene Tempest, a fourth-year history and French double major, is studying the posters of 1968 in Paris on a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship. In this first dispatch, she tells about settling in to her new apartment in the 3rd arrondissement, and stumbling across some present-day echoes of the student protests of 1968.
(07 July)

George Lakoff on the inconvenient truth about Iraq: It's an occupation, not a war
In this opinion piece, Professor of Linguistics George Lakoff tells how changing the framing of the situation in Iraq to an occupation instead of a war shifts the debate: from whether the U.S. should "cut and run" to a discussion of when the government calls an end to the occupation.
(05 July)

DDT in moms harmful to kids, study suggests
A study led by a team of researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, has found that in utero exposure to DDT is associated with developmental delays in young children.
(05 July)

NCLB effectiveness tough to gauge, study finds
Many states provide erratic, exaggerated reports of student achievement trends that make it impossible to determine the effectiveness of the federal No Child Left Behind Act, according to a study released today (Wednesday, July 5) that was led by UC Berkeley researchers.
(05 July)

Listeriosis's path to miscarriage traced to placental infection
Researchers have found why pregnant women are 20 times as likely as the general population to be infected by Listeria.
(29 June)

Struggles persist for adolescent girls with ADHD
As they enter adolescence, girls with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) show fewer symptoms of hyperactivity. But they continue to lag behind their peers academically and have a greater proclivity for other behavioral and emotional disorders as well as for substance abuse, according to new research from the UC Berkeley.
(29 June)

Luring students passionate about learning
The UC Berkeley Graduate School of Education operates the only "do-it-yourself gifted program in the world" for academically talented elementary and secondary school students each summer, says its director, Nina Gabelko.
(28 June)

Top economists support greenhouse gas reductions
Forty-three top economists from across California are delivering a letter today, Monday, June 26, to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the California Legislature urging them to move quickly to control greenhouse gas emissions.
(26 June)

MBA student Rose Duignan just wants to put dinner on your table
Rose Duignan remembers all too well what it was like juggling domestic responsibilities with her full-time job. She fantasized daily about dropping off empty pots and pans along with her three kids at daycare that would magically be filled with dinner when she returned. Now 54 and co-owner of the Dinner Source, Duignan hopes to turn that dream into reality for today's busy families.
(20 June)

Vice Chancellor McQuade announces plans to step down
After leading record-breaking fundraising for UC Berkeley, Vice Chancellor Donald McQuade announces plans to return to the English Department
(14 June)

DNA database offers war orphans key to stolen past
A DNA database developed by the state Department of Justice and UC Berkeley's Human Rights Center holds the key to the past for hundreds of children kidnapped by soldiers or otherwise separated from their families during El Salvador's 1980-1992 civil war.
(12 June)

Theodore E. Cohn, vision expert & signal designer, dies
Theodore E. Cohn, professor of optometry and bioengineering, and a leading researcher in signal detection theory and its real-world applications, died on May 25 at Alta Bates Hospital. he was 64.
(09 June)

Grant extends successful program for low-income students
UC Berkeley's Biology Scholars Program has had amazing success over the past 14 years, nurturing low-income, first generation college students through biology majors into post-graduate careers in medicine or research. The Howard Hughes Medical Institute has acknowleged that success with its fourth four-year grant, another $1.6 million to continue the program's mission and expand into new areas.
(08 June)

Rare Mt. Diablo buckwheat flowers anew
Last year, a pretty, pink-flowered buckwheat thought to have gone extinct was rediscovered on Mount Diablo, sparking a concerted effort by a local environmental group, the state park system and UC Berkeley to protect and re-establish it in the wild. Those efforts have resulted in about a dozen new plants growing happily at the UC Botanical Garden, most now in full flower.
(07 June)

High schoolers try out college this summer
One hundred or so high school students will soon arrive at the University of California, Berkeley, for a customized new summer program that offers them college credit and a sneak preview of campus life. UC Berkeley's Pre-Collegiate program, which starts June 26, is open to students who have completed the 10th grade and sport a B average or better, as well as a positive recommendation from their respective high schools.
(07 June)

New wireless networking system brings eye care to thousands in India
Thousands of residents of rural villages in India are receiving quality eye care thanks to a collaborative effort between an Indian hospital network and the researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and at Intel Corporation who have developed a new technology for low-cost rural connectivity.
(06 June)

Distant ball of dust not dusty enough
The dust ejected by exploding, supermassive stars is thought to be the main source of material for new stars. But nearly all supernova remnants have been found to have too little dust compared with model predictions. Observations by UC Berkeley astronomers of a much younger supernova in the nearby Small Magellanic Cloud shows they have the same problem.
(06 June)

I-House: 75 years old and going strong
The multicultural, co-educational living center, perhaps more relevant today than when it was founded in 1930, celebrates a landmark anniversary in locations worldwide and engages in an aggressive fundraising campaign to ensure its future.
(31 May)

ASUC Art Studio offers summer courses in multiple media
Among the summer classes offered by the ASUC Art Studio are videography, web design, knitting, sewing, ceramics, and woodcarving.
(31 May)

Cody's final chapter
Like a book they didn't want to end, faculty recall the glory days of the historic Telegraph Avenue bookstore.
(31 May)

Forum spotlights staff diversity and inclusion
A daylong forum that took place on May 9 , "Diversity in Action: Strengthening Excellence in Our Workplace," was part of an ongoing effort to elevate and broaden the discussion of diversity, equity, and inclusion on the Berkeley campus.
(31 May)

'Keeping an open mind is hard work' (and other wisdom from the podium)
Good graduation pictures, in capturing joy and a sense of accomplishment, resemble one another strongly. Good graduation speeches, if carefully written, strike their own singular chords. Here, examples of both, from the Berkeley commencement season just concluded.
(31 May)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(31 May)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(31 May)

Promising new metamaterial could transform ultrasound imaging
A new material has been developed by UC Berkeley researchers that holds promise for revolutionizing the field of ultrasound imaging. Dubbed an "ultrasonic metamaterial," the substance responds differently to sound waves than any substance found in nature.
(31 May)

Oral history pioneer Willa Baum dies at 79
Willa Klug Baum, an internationally respected oral historian and the longtime director of UC Berkeley's Regional Oral History Office, has died at age 79 following back surgery. Her pioneering work in oral history methodology and interview techniques served as the foundation for the establishment and growth of oral history as a unique academic discipline.
(31 May)

RAD Lab wins backing from five major IT firms
Five major corporations have signed on as affiliate members of the RAD Lab. IBM, Hewlett-Packard, NTT MCL, Nortel and Oracle have each pledged annual contributions of up to $170,000 per year for the next five years.
(30 May)

George M. Foster, noted anthropologist, dies
George M. Foster, a UC Berkeley anthropologist generally known as the founder of medical anthropology and for his pioneering contributions on peasant societies and long-term field research documenting societal change, died May 18. He was 92.
(26 May)

Student to make stamp pitch to US postmaster
Gideon Sofer didn't ask for a trip to Disneyland or a shopping spree when he made New Jersey's Make-a-Wish Foundation list of terminally ill recipients in 2002. Instead, he wished for a meeting with the U.S. postmaster general. His goal was a postage stamp to highlight Inflammatory Bowel Disease, a chronic intestinal disorder that has landed him in the hospital for months at a time since the age of 12, and led to the removal of nearly half his gut. Tomorrow (Thursday, May 25), he gets to make his pitch.
(24 May)

UC Berkeley-led levee investigation team releases final report at public meeting in New Orleans
A 36-person team of engineers and scientists released its final report on the cause of levee failures during last-year's Hurricane Katrina that inundated the city of New Orleans and killed some 1,500 people.
(24 May)

'Dateline' brings down the house with shake table quake simulation
TV viewers watching NBC's "Dateline" show on Sunday got a good idea of the damage an 8.0 earthquake could wreak on the thousands of single-family houses built in the 1930s and 1940s in San Francisco. The popular news program filmed an experiment featuring such a house being shaken on the earthquake simulator at UC Berkeley's Earthquake Engineering Research Center.
( 23 May )

Study warns of cleaning product risks
When used indoors under certain conditions, many common household cleaners and air fresheners emit toxic pollutants at levels that may lead to health risks, according to a new study by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
(22 May)

World to be even hotter by century's end
While climate models predict significant global warming by the end of the century, these models don't take into account several poorly understood processes that will amplify the warming. Two UC Berkeley and LBNL researchers estimated this effect from past warming cycles and came up with temperatues 3.5 degrees Fahrenheit higher than today's climate models predict.
(22 May)

Regents grapple with compensation furor, reaffirm support for Dynes
After a third critical audit, fresh front-page revelations of dubious severance deals, a trio of state senators asking the president to resign, a Greek chorus of angry employees, and still more recriminations and mea culpas, the UC Board of Regents approved a slew of incremental measures to address widespread problems in UC's executive compensation proacices, and then reaffirmed support for President Robert Dynes as the right person to reform the system.
(18 May)

Janet Broughton new arts, humanities dean
Janet Broughton, a UC Berkeley professor of philosophy, will become the next dean of arts and humanities in the university's College of Letters & Science, starting July 1.
(18 May)

Lowell Bergman named distinguished professor
Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Lowell Bergman has been named the Reva and David Logan Distinguished Professor at UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism, Dean Orville Schell announced today (Thursday, May 18).
(18 May)

Gore presentation cancelled
Updating a news release issued earlier today (Wednesday, May 17) about the May 23-24 China-U.S. Climate Change Forum at the University of California, Berkeley, a May 23 presentation by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore has been cancelled.
(17 May)

China-U.S. Climate Change Forum
Top climate scientists from China and the United States will gather May 23-24 with policymakers, Nobel laureates, think tank officials, business representatives, members of the media and others at the University of California, Berkeley, to explore how the world's two biggest producers of greenhouse gas emissions can address global warming and minimize its impacts on the planet.
(17 May)

Biochemist Daniel Koshland wins Welch Award
Daniel E. Koshland Jr., an international leader in research on enzymes and receptors and former editor of Science magazine, has received the Welch Award in Chemistry for his career contributions in biochemistry.
(16 May)

Preschool directors discuss Prop. 82
As California voters ponder filmmaker Rob Reiner's Proposition 82 to expand free preschool, directors of neighborhood programs worry about the prospect of aligning their classrooms with standardized tests and the move to unionize a low-paid teaching force, according to a statewide survey to be released today by University of California, Berkeley, researchers.
(16 May)

Scheduling changes for UC Berkeley graduation speakers
Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean, who was scheduled to give the keynote address this Saturday (May 13) at the graduation ceremony for the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law (Boalt Hall), has canceled his plans to speak at the ceremony. He is among elected officials who have said they will not appear as planned because they will not cross union picket lines.
(12 May)

Using kin's DNA to find criminals focus of study
The use of DNA kinship analysis methods could be an effective tool in helping to identify potential criminal suspects, but there are also legal and policy implications of doing so.
(11 May)

Convocation 2006
Complete coverage of Convocation 2006 including a slide show, profiles of the University Medalist and five finalists, and excerpts from the remarks made by a number of speakers.
(11 May)

Point of view: Who are your heroes?
Commencement is a bit like the Academy Awards, a chance for graduates to thank those who got them through four (or more) years of university. We asked the students sweating outside the Greek Theatre yesterday to name their heroes — personal or famous — and what about those people they found inspiring.
(11 May)

Lane Rettig: 'It is our duty to live loudly and fiercely'
Text of the address given by University Medalist Lane Rettig at Commencement Convocation 2006.
(10 May)

Mixed results for Medicare drug plan
Seniors who haven't signed up for a Medicare "Part D" prescription drug plan should do so before a May 15 deadline or face higher premiums and lack of prescription coverage for catastrophic illness, advises a University of California, Berkeley, behavioral economist and Nobel Laureate.
(08 May)

Alexis Ashot is not just a polyglot art-history major, he's a true Renaissance man
University Medalist finalist Alexis Ashot came by his major almost by accident, but found that art history ties together many of his seemingly disparate interests together: literature, history, languages, even science and math. Fluent in Russian and French, with a good grasp of German and a working knowledge of Italian, Ashot is also an actor, singer, fencer, and swimmer.
(08 May)

Medal finalist and French/linguistics major Laurel MacKenzie elevates multitasking to an art form
University Medal finalist Laurel MacKenzie is finishing off her senior year by packing in as many activities as possible: in addition to her demanding double major, part-time job, and musical activities (like playing the campanile's carillon), she's training for her first 10K run and acting in a French play.
(05 May)

Alternative energy plan wins contest
An alternative energy company called Aurora BioFuels is the winner of a $25,000 first prize at the eighth annual UC Berkeley Business Plan Competition at the University of California, Berkeley's Haas School of Business.
(05 May)

Educator Nadine Lambert dies in accident
Nadine Lambert, a Professor in the Graduate School at the University of California, Berkeley, and a leader in school psychology and establishing mental health programs in schools, died Wednesday, April 26, in a car accident near campus. She was 79.
(04 May)

Civil engineering major Siu-Ting Dickson Mak spans disciplines and cultures
University Medal finalist Siu-Ting Dickson Mak's passion for bridges extends beyond the kind that span rivers and canyons. During his four years at UC Berkeley, Mak has used his skills as an engineer and musician — and his determination to reach out wherever he sees a need — to build bridges between young people and old, musicians and scientists, Asians and Americans.
(04 May)

2006 graduation speakers lineup
Stem-cell research policymakers, a Bob Dylan chronicler and a celebrity eco-stylist are among the dozens of speakers who will offer words of wisdom to the graduating class of 2006. The scheduled keynote speaker at the May 10 convocation commencement at the Greek Theatre is California Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez.
(04 May)

New dean of students dives into work this week
Jonathan Poullard, a student affairs administrator with almost 20 years of experience working in higher education, started work this week as UC Berkeley's new dean of students. But don't expect to find him in his office.
(04 May)

New faculty-compensation policies introduced
As some of the campus's lowest-paid workers celebrated new raises, those scaling the academic ladder got a financial and morale boost of their own last week, with the unveiling of new faculty-compensation policies at the Academic Senate's spring meeting.
(03 May)

On and off the field, Cal athletics goes for the gold
A broad-based group of more than 50 faculty, staff, students and alumni has completed the final draft of Berkeley’s NCAA Athletics Certification Self-Study report, an exhaustive examination of Cal’s athletics program mandated every 10 years by intercollegiate athletics’ national governing body.
(03 May)

From a confusing smorgasbord to one-stop shopping
bSpace, Berkeley's new collaboration and learning environment, provides tools for a variety of campus users and will eventually replace Blackboard and WebCT.
(03 May)

Listening for the not-so-faint echo of the '60s
For Berkeley researchers Michael Watts and Iain Boal, communes and their denizens offer a fertile field for scholarship.
(03 May)

Berkeley Staff Assembly to celebrate managerial excellence
The Berkeley Staff Assembly will hold its Excellence in Management (EIM) awards ceremony at noon, Monday, May 15, in International House's Chevron Auditorium. The annual event this year celebrates 34 stellar managers, as well as BSA itself, which is 25 this year. BSA is a staff organization open to all employees.
(03 May)

Campus staff issues to take center stage at May 9 diversity forum
Members of the campus community are invited to attend the upcoming campuswide forum, "Diversity in Action: Strengthening Excellence in Our Workplace," and to offer input on fostering equity and diversity on the Berkeley staff.
(03 May)

New issue of Chronicle of UC focuses on peripatetic scholars
The new, seventh issue of Chronicle of the University of California: A Journal of University History, titled "Changing Places: Scholars Here and Abroad," examines not only the views of auslanders who have ventured hither over the past century but of Berkeleyans who have gone abroad for a spell.
(03 May)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(03 May)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(03 May)

Freshmen reading list aimed at 'future presidents'
UC Berkeley's eagerly awaited summer freshman reading list is a must for future presidents. This year's picks are aimed at tomorrow's leaders as well as Oval Office seekers in need of etiquette tips, historic grounding and gravitas.
(03 May)

Renowned hydrologist David K. Todd dies at age 82
David Keith Todd, a University of California, Berkeley, professor emeritus of civil and environmental engineering and a leader among modern groundwater engineers, died of acute leukemia at Alta Bates Medical Center on April 23. He was 82.
(03 May)

Chamber Chorus takes East Coast tour
The UC Chamber Chorus will be hitting the road in late May, performing concerts with music by Latin American and Slavic composers during a three-city, East Coast tour.
(01 May)

"Look out, world!": Maria and Vanessa Bailey — mother and daughter, roommates, and partners in crime — are graduating
When first we met Maria Bailey and her daughter Vanessa, they were giggly with nervous anticipation about starting their UC Berkeley careers together after transferring from Diablo Valley College (DVC). Two-and-a-half breakneck years later, and they're still giggling, interrupting each other and finishing each other's sentences. And the Baileys have not only survived — sharing a computer, clothes, lots of ramen noodles, and a car for commuting to campus from their house in Bay Point, Cal. — they've positively thrived.
(01 May)

Art historian receives Smithsonian American Art Museum award
Margaretta M. Lovell, a professor of American art and architecture, is the recipient of a Smithsonian American Art Museum award that recognizes outstanding scholarship in American art. She was honored for her book, "Art in a Season of Revolution: Painters, Artisans and Patrons in Early America."
(01 May)

Chancellor delivers good news, sounds familiar themes in annual address to staff
A new slate of career-development programs for Berkeley staff will be introduced this summer and fall, Chancellor Robert Birgeneau announced at a noontime address to staff on April 26. In an appearance sponsored by the Berkeley Staff Assembly, the chancellor also commented on topics ranging from wages to performance management, and from staff diversity to the controversy over compensation for UC executives.
(28 April)

Minimum wage for certain low-paid employees is raised to $11.25
A long-sought pay boost for employees at the bottom of the salary scale was realized last week when a long-considered decision to do so was announced by the chancellor.
(27 April)

Faculty's digital divide
Access to computing resources for faculty in Berkeley's many departments and research units varies widely, and the campus's technological "have-nots" are often left to fend for themselves. An Academic Senate committee offers a plan to level the playing field and safeguard network security.
(27 April)

Are you listening to me?!
Podcasting technology doesn't just make courses available to students anytime, anywhere. The doors of Berkeley's classrooms are now open to an eager audience of listeners worldwide.
(27 April)

Awards
Recent faculty/staff awards.
(27 April)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(27 April)

Artificial compound eye fabricated in lab
A team of bioengineers at University of California, Berkeley, has created a series of artificial compound eyes using the eyes of insects such as dragonflies and houseflies as models.
(27 April)

Bush honors Arthur Rosenfeld with Fermi Award
Physics professor emeritus Arthur Rosenfeld, who is to be honored at an 80th-birthday symposium April 28, has received an even higher honor. He was named by President Bush as the 2005 winner of the Enrico Fermi Award, the federal government's oldest award for scientific achievement.
(27 April)

Arabic and English major Brian Loo wants to put his ideals into action in the Middle East
Inspired by September 11, University Medal finalist Brian Loo wants to serve as an emissary between American and Middle Eastern cultures, dispelling stereotypes on both sides. Exactly how he plans to do that, he's not sure yet — but already he has quite a lot of experience trying.
(26 April)

Professor warns Asians of proposed immigration reform
Ethnic studies professor takes public stand as Asian American protesting what he calls "draconian" immigration reform legislation. Ronald Takaki is keynote speaker at the Asian Law Caucus dinner on Thursday, April 27.
(26 April)

UC students asked to complete online survey to improve undergraduate experience
A team of UC researchers is asking students at all nine campuses to grade the university on how well it is doing its job of undergraduate education. Feedback is being sought on everything from course instruction to admissions processes to how much time students spend studying, working and surfing the Internet. At UC Berkeley, cash prizes are being offered to entice undergraduate students to take the survey before finals roll around.
(26 April)

Distinguished Teaching Awards announced
The recipients of the 2006 Distinguished Teaching Awards have been announced. Ani Adhikari, Ananya Roy and David Wagner will be honored tomorrow (Wednesday, April 26) at 5 p.m. at the campus's Zellerbach Playhouse.
(25 April)

UCOP failed to seek approval for many executive-pay components, audit confirms
An independent audit of the University of California's executive-pay policies and practices has yielded comprehensive new details showing that many of the benefits and salary "extras" paid to top administrators over the past 10 years were not disclosed to the Board of Regents or the public as required. The just-the-facts report, by the PricewaterhouseCoopers accounting firm, makes no judgments as to the merits of the packages, and points no fingers of blame
(25 April)

5 faculty elected to National Academy of Sciences
Five members of the faculty have been elected to the National Academy of Sciences, bringing to 132 the number of UC Berkeley scientists, engineers and mathematicians in the prestigious organization.
(25 April)

Brainy double major Nicole Swann seeks to connect neurobiology to human behavior
Inspired by a relative's neurological illness, University Medal finalist Nicole Swann chose to major in psychology and molecular and cell biology in order to understand the biological aspect of behavior. And because she "wanted to meet some of the people whose brains I was studying," she began working in Professor Robert Knight's cognitive neuroscience research lab her second year at Berkeley.
(25 April)

Campus extends reach to iPod generation
Further extending its curricular reach to the iPod generation, the University of California, Berkeley, today (Tuesday, April 25) announced "Berkeley on iTunes U," a free service that makes video and audio recordings of course lectures available both on and off campus through Apple Computer's iTunes Music Store.
(25 April)

AAAS fellows named
The American Academy of Arts and Sciences announced today (Monday, April 24) the election of 175 new fellows, 11 of them faculty members at the University of California, Berkeley.
(24 April)

Lowest paid UC Berkeley workers get pay hike
About 180 of the lowest paid employees at UC Berkeley are receiving pay increases up to 20 percent following a decision to raise the baseline wage for career and limited-appointment employees to $11.25 per hour.
(21 April)

A god among teachers: Students give neurobiology lecturer David Presti the 2006 Golden Apple Award for Outstanding Teaching
David Presti, a senior lecturer of neurobiology in the molecular and cell biology department, was chosen from a pool of 84 faculty nominees to receive the only student-conferred teaching award on campus. The Golden Apple was created by the ASUC to honor those professors "who teach with energy — inspiring, demonstrating passion, and showing care in the classroom."
(21 April)

Space scientists find that solar wind becomes music in the right hands
A UC Berkeley musician and student has used data from an Earth-orbiting satellite to create music, and has created software to let the rest of us compose our own solar symphony.
(20 April)

Students win Lange photo contest
Two UC Berkeley students are winners of the 2006 Dorothea Lange Fellowship for their photos exploring the lives of a campus janitor and of a 12-year-old aspiring boxer.
(20 April)

Three UC Berkeley faculty members win Guggenheim fellowships
An historian, a statistician and an environmental sociologist at UC Berkeley are among the 187 winners of the 2006 Guggenheim Memorial Foundation fellowship.
(20 April)

Sudden Oak Death introduced to U.S., study finds
A genetic analysis of 151 isolates of the Sudden Oak Death pathogen provides new evidence that the commercial plant trade helped introduce the microbe to the United States, according to UC Berkeley plant pathologists.
(20 April)

Chancellor' Community Partnership Fund established
A new Chancellor's Community Partnership Fund will distribute $200,000 in grants this year to support projects linking UC Berkeley with the community to improve the quality of life for Berkeley residents.
(20 April)

Snapshots of the artists: 27 students win Eisner Awards celebrating campus creative talent
UC Berkeley is often described proudly as one of the nation's top research universities, but some forget that there are plenty of "right brains" to balance out the left ones on this campus. As evidence, look no further than the 27 students who received an Eisner Award this year, bestowed for the "highest achievement in the creative arts."
(20 April)

Diversity Research Initiative draws enthusiastic response
Of 21 varied research concepts submitted in response to a call from the Berkeley Diversity Research Initiative, ten faculty pre-proposals, from a surprising array of fields, have advanced to the next phase.
(19 April)

This kind of climate change is welcome
The return of sunshine and blue skies augurs well for Cal Day, the annual campus open house taking place this Saturday, April 22.
(19 April)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(19 April)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(19 April)

Muscles burn lactic acid as well as carbos
Most athletes see lactic acid as their enemy, and think that training helps them eliminate the metabolic waste product from their muscles so they will function longer and harder. But UC Berkeley physiologist George Brooks has found that training actually teaches your muscle cells how to use lactic acid as a fuel source to get more bang for the buck.
(19 April)

Richard Blum gives $15 million to fund center to alleviate poverty
Philanthopist and UC Regent Richard Blum has given UC Berkeley $15 million, which includes a $5 million challenge grant, to launch a center to improve the quality of life for impoverished people around the world. Jimmy Carter, the Dalai Lama and former Secretary of State George Shultz are all honorary trustees of the new Richard C. Blum Center for Developing Economies.
(19 April)

Campus issues fall admissions data
University of California, Berkeley, admissions officials announced today (Wednesday, April 19) that they have offered admission to more than 9,800 high school students who collectively represent a broad geographic cross-section of the state and a wide variety of socio-economic backgrounds and experiences.
(19 April)

Campus earns seismic safety honor
The model Disaster Resistant University Program at UC Berkeley has been recognized as one of the top seismic safety projects of the 20th century.
(18 April)

Top graduating senior a computer whiz kid with social conscience
Lane Rettig, a computer wunderkind who speaks fluent Japanese, wins the University Medal. As outstanding graduating senior, he will speak at UC Berkeley's Commencement Convocation on May 10
(18 April)

Task force calls for 'sea change' in UC's executive-compensation policies and practices
A nine-member task force called Thursday for a "sea change" in the UC system's executive-compensation practices and policies, recommending that the Board of Regents "immediately" begin to clean house in areas ranging from compliance with existing pay policies to punishment for violations, and from checks and balances to transparency and disclosure.
(13 April)

Attention, shoppers: avoid the center aisles
Nutritionist Marion Nestle's goal is to help consumers decide what to put in their grocery carts and on their plates.
(13 April)

Family-friendly policies for faculty are now 'an entitlement'
A comprehensive suite of "family-accommodation" policies for faculty, newly enshrined in the Academic Personnel Manual, places the University of California among the most "family-friendly" academic institutions in the nation.
(13 April)

What greater wisdom do the U.S. News graduate-school rankings provide?
Berkeley's disciplines — 11 this year — all finished in the top 10. The magazine offers no blanket institutional ranking to inspire cries of "We're No.1!" — but where there are data to crunch, there's always a way.
(13 April)

Who said the revolution won't be televised?
The Berkeley Art Museum's new video installation, "Now-Time Venezuela, Part 1," puts politics front-and-center by giving Venezuelan factory workers a bully pulpit.

(13 April)

Pedal power to the people
A draft of Berkeley's first-ever bicycle plan, aimed at making it easier to get to, from, and around the central campus via pedal power, has just been released by Parking and Transportation.
(13 April)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(13 April)

Nanofibers created in orderly fashion
Researchers at UC Berkeley have found a way to create nanofibers in a direct, continuous and controllable manner using a technique dubbed "near-field electrospinning."
(12 April)

"Annual Review of the Presidency" panel took potshots at — and played defense for — a lame-duck Bush
Three journalists and a political scientist discuss the President Bush's low poll numbers and which possible reasons — among them the Iraq war, Bush's Social Security privatization plan, and Hurricane Katrina — might most be to blame.
(12 April)

Maria Shriver to join CNN's Fit Nation town hall meeting

(12 April)

Ethiopian fossils link ape-men with earlier hominids
Our ancestor Australopithecus has often been called an ape-man because, though bipedal, it bore many similarities to apes. New fossils discovered in Ethiopia link Australopithecus to more primitive human ancestors that roamed Africa some 4 million years ago.
(12 April)

Milestone in quest for cheap antimalarial
Only 16 months ago, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation put up $43 million to develop a low-cost antimalarial drug, artemisinin, using genetically engineered microbes created by UC Berkeley's Jay Keasling. Keasling's lab has now taken a giant step toward that goal, bringing closer the day when a curative dose will cost the poor in Asia and Africa a mere 25 cents.
(12 April)

Annual Cal Day open house set for April 22
Visitors at the annual Cal Day open house on Saturday, April 22, will find something for everyone.
(11 April)

Friendly, four-footed firefighters: A chat with the goat lady
Lynn Huntsinger, an associate professor in the College of Natural Resources, chats about her bleating friends Vladimir and Tinsel, a pair of goats who will be making the rounds again on Cal Day to promote their their skills in creating a fire-safe landscape.
(11 April)

Math expert fields questions big and small at Cal Day
An interview with Professor George Bergman, the man behind the longstanding "Ask a Mathematician" table at Cal Day, who over the years has fielded questions from very young children, high school and college students, and their parents.
(11 April)

Journalism professor Michael Pollan's new book on the U.S. food chain provides few soundbites — but much to chew on
A growing number of Americans are scrutinizing ingredient labels and asking, What is this stuff? Michael Pollan, Knight Professor of Journalism at UC Berkeley, can tell you. In a just-released new book, "The Omnivore's Dilemma," he takes readers to the feedlot, to the farm, and into the woods to learn a few simple things: what we're eating, where it came from, how it got to our plate, and its true cost. Will we have the nerve to follow him?
(11 April)

Chancellor Birgeneau calls for "clear paths to permanent residency and employment"
In a statement issued April 10, UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert J. Birgeneau, who was born in Canada and came to the United States for his graduate education, called for U.S. immigration policies that "welcome the best and brightest people from around the world and give them clear paths to permanent residency and employment."
(10 April)

African staple crop gets a boost
UCB researchers are joining an ambitious project to improve nutrition for 300 million people in Africa who rely on sorghum as a principal source of food. The project is part of the Grand Challenges in Global Health initiative, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and other sponsors.
(10 April)

Amani Nuru-Jeter hopes to unravel race vs. racism's role in health
In the United States, being black is dangerous to your health. African-Americans suffer much higher rates of strokes, heart disease, and cancer. Researchers like Amani Nuru-Jeter, assistant professor at UC Berkeley's School of Public Health, are starting to look at the data from a very different angle. Maybe the variable to look at is not race, but racism. What if stress-inducing experiences with discrimination are more likely to cause poor health than are the tiny biological differences associated with skin color?
(10 April)

Few women take pregnancy leave in California, study finds
Only one in three working women who qualify for pregnancy leave in California take advantage of the benefit, a new study finds. Those who do cite medical necessity, physical disomfort and stress or fatigue as the reason for taking time off.
(06 April)

Blue ring discovered around Uranus
The rings of rocky material encircling the large planets of our solar system are red except for the peculiar blue ring in the orbit of Saturn's outer moon Enceladus. Now UC Berkeley and SETI Institute astronomers have found a second blue ring in the solar system associated with the outer moon, Mab, of Uranus.
(06 April)

Obesity research detailed in new book
"Obesity: Dietary and Developmental Influences," is a new book from UC Berkeley's Center for Weight and Health that uses an evidence-based approach to shed light on what to eat and what not to eat in order to maintain a healthy weight.
(05 April)

Space agency's 2020 vision shortsighted, say campus astronomers
Deep proposed cuts to NASA's small-mission Explorer program, "the bread and butter of university space labs," pose a serious threat to unmanned, high-yield astronomy research, from Berkeley's Space Sciences Laboratory to the moons of Saturn and beyond.
(05 April)

Strangers in a strange land master the phone and the air kiss
America 101: Life in the U.S.A, a collaboratively developed class on U.S. habits and practices, is designed to help foreign-born scholars, their family members, and campus service workers accommodate themselves to America.
(05 April)

The day the roof fell in
Seventy-five years ago this week, a campus construction accident caused the death of three workmen and inspired the university to incorporate engineering into construction.
(05 April)

Helping the campus keep its summer resolutions
New Summer Sessions director Rick Russo is promoting innovations to attract students — while still working to solve such longstanding problems as enrollment growth and crowded core-course classes.
(05 April)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(05 April)

Jasper Rine named Million-Dollar Professor by HHMI
Ever wonder what you could do if you had a cool million? Jasper Rine now has the chance to find out. He was just named one of 20 "Million-Dollar Professors" by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, charged with overhauling the most popular laboratory course on campus.
(05 April)

Will spouse swap = star status?
By any estimation, Barry Welsh leads an exciting life. When he's not developing NASA satellites for Berkeley's Space Sciences Laboratory, he plays rugby, or tackles wacky adventure sports on family vacations. But when the 53-year-old English-born astrophysicist decided that he wanted more from life — namely, fame — he went where other notoriety-seekers before him have gone: the Fox TV network's "Trading Spouses" reality show.
(05 April)

Bancroft Library receives vast archives of San Francisco Examiner
The archives of the San Francisco Examiner are being donated to UC Berkeley's Bancroft Library, University Librarian Thomas Leonard announced today (Tuesday, April 4). The donation is the single largest gift ever to The Bancroft Library.
(04 April)

Spring break in Biloxi: Building a family while helping other families persevere
In her final dispatch, Alternative Breaks student Judy Wang writes of her newfound "family" of fellow volunteers, the work they've accomplished on the Gulf Coast, and the lessons they've learned while helping make a dent in the lingering damage from Hurricane Katrina.
(03 April)

New organic dining option a first for U.S. campuses
Cal Dining's Crossroads dining commons is launching an organic salad bar today. The salads will be prepared in the dining services's dedicated certified organic kitchen, the first certified organic kitchen and dining option on an American college campus, according to the country's leading organic certifying organization.
(03 April)

Hope amid disaster, diversity amid prejudice, and mold amid all
In her second dispatch from Biloxi, Miss., where she is helping with Hurricane Katrina cleanup on an Alternative Breaks program, UC Berkeley student Judy Wang writes about the pervasiveness of mold and racial prejudice in the region, and the enduring hopes of the area's survivors and, especially, its children.
(30 March)

1906 earthquake centennial inspires ballet performed to live seismic data
In a rare convergence of art, nature and technology, a San Francisco Ballet dancer will perform to live seismic sounds transmitted from the Hayward Fault to the War Memorial Opera House. UC Berkeley artist and computer scientist Ken Goldberg created "Ballet Mori" to evoke the fragility of humans against nature.
(30 March)

Spring Break in Biloxi: Battling mold, months after Katrina
In the first of a series of dispatches from Biloxi, Miss., where she is taking part in an Alternative Breaks program, UC Berkeley student Judy Wang writes about how Cal students are using their spring break to help with the continuing efforts to clean up areas pummeled last fall by Hurricane Katrina.
(29 March)

Professor, students win design competition for Taiwan peace park
A professor and two students of landscape architecture at UC Berkeley have won an international competition with their vision for a 15-acre park in Taiwan that will serve as a national memorial and monument to peace.
(29 March)

Online social networks boost friendships, and perhaps risks
The explosion of membership at social networking websites such as Facebook and MySpace is helping young people make friends online, but it also poses challenges for universities concerned about the dangers to students of posting intimate details of their lives on the World Wide Web. These risks and opportunities were explored at a UC Berkeley symposium on Monday.
(28 March)

Old drug's new use will save Nigerian women's lives
A team from UC Berkeley's School of Public Health has helped doctors in Nigeria win approval for the drug misoprostol to prevent and control post-partum hemorrhage, the life-threatening condition experienced by thousands of women after birth. The use of the drug is expected to save thousands of lives annually in that country.
(28 March)

Study finds in utero arsenic exposure tied to lung disease
Children exposed to high levels of arsenic are seven to 12 times more likely to die of lung cancer and other lung diseases in young adulthood. If also exposed in utero, the risk of dying from bronchiectasis is 46 times higher than normal, according to a new study by Allan Smith in the School of Public Health.
(27 March)

SIMS has a new name
Since 1995, it's been a premiere school at the University of California, Berkeley, with a rather clunky name – the School of Information Management & Systems. Now, it's officially been renamed the School of Information, or "I-School," for short.
(23 March)

A conversation with Cuauhtιmoc Cαrdenas
The former mayor of Mexico City — and a three-time candidate for Mexico's presidency — is concluding an extended campus visit . In this exchange with the Berkeleyan he touches on such key issues as democratization, immigration, and NAFTA.

(23 March)

Study explores metro car ownership patterns, race, segregation and disaster planning
The segregation and low car ownership rates of pre-Katrina New Orleans are repeated in all major U.S. cities and should be taken into account in emergency evacuation plans, says a new study being presented today (Thursday, March 23) at a UC Berkeley symposium.
(23 March)

Haas School to provide training to largest oil company in Norway
UC Berkeley will provide multi-year, comprehensive leadership development and project management training to top executives and project managers of the Norwegian oil company, Statoil, Tom Campbell, dean of UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business announced today (Thursday, March 23).
(23 March)

Live webcast from Turkey of Mar. 29 total solar eclipse
Though the March 29 total solar eclipse won't be visible from the United States - it takes place at 3 am PST - eclipse fans and night owls can catch a live Webcast of the event from Turkey, anchored by UC Berkeley astronomer Isabel Hawkins and with commentary by Space Sciences Lab physicist Janet Luhmann.
(23 March)

For UC labor studies, marketplace of ideas lacks a safety net
The multi-campus Institute for Labor and Employment, created in 2000 with an infusion of $6 million in state funds, expanded upon a Berkeley program begun under Clark Kerr in 1945. Now, with funding in budget limbo, some charge academic freedom is falling prey to politics.
(22 March)

What looks like a wetsuit and saves lives?
According to a study directed by the School of Public Health's Suellen Miller, a garment that resembles the bottom half of a wetsuit may increase the survival chances for women with obstetrical hemorrhage, the cause of 60 percent of maternal deaths in developing countries.
(22 March)

Opinion
Former Boalt faculty member Robert Post (now the David Boies Professor of Law at Yale Law School) on the Solomon Amendment in the Supreme Court.
(22 March)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(22 March)

'Alternative' spring breakers provide relief for Gulf Coast hurricane victims
As part of Cal Corps' alternative spring breaks, 20 students, three staff members and a theater professor are headed for Biloxi, Miss., to help Gulf Coast hurricane victims. Other alternative breakers will explore immigration issues along the San Diego-Tijuana border and nonviolence in Oakland.
(22 March)

Biochemist, PNAS editor Nicholas Cozzarelli has died
Nicholas Cozzarelli, a creative scientist who tackled the knotty question of how DNA is twisted and untwisted during the life of a cell, died March 19, a week shy of his 68th birthday. In more than 10 years as editor of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, he turned the publication around and created a true, public acess scientific journal.
(21 March)

Transfer student Bruce Sexton has Target-ed independence for blind people as a major goal
Quiet, mild-mannered Bruce "B.J." Sexton doesn't seem like the litigious type. "People think I'm radical because I'm suing Target," says the third-year UC Berkeley student, who is legally blind. He explains that he and other groups are taking the retail giant to court over its inaccessible website not just "to make a point," but to increase blind people's ability to live independently. Sexton's own independence has been hard won and remains an ongoing battle.
(20 March)

Student journalists report on "Early Signs" of global warming
Reports from the field by 11 student journalists documenting the impacts of global warming from East Africa to the Arctic will be released weekly by salon.com and NPR's "Living on Earth" program beginning today (March 17).
(17 March)

Systemwide Academic Senate chair ousted
The UC Academic Senate, which represents current and retired faculty from the University of California's 10 campuses, has new leadership, following this week's vote by its representative Assembly to oust Senate Chair Clifford Brunk, a professor of biology at UCLA.
(16 March)

From traditional airs to Gaelic jazz
It's a long way from Berkeley to Tipperary — and Dublin, Belfast, and Cobh — but for Melanie O'Reilly, a visiting scholar in Celtic Studies, that's nothing that a bit of Celtic jazz can't cure.
(16 March)

Reflecting Berkeley from the outside in
To get a bead on the university's impact on the world, Berkeley in the News, a daily compendium of stories reporting on campus research and personages, provides a reflection from the outside in.
(16 March)

Celebrating all things green
In preparation for the campus's third annual Sustainability Summit, the Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Sustainability (CACS) will fund new projects, honor best practices, and adopt a new logo.
(16 March)

Bear Pass program shifts into higher gear
Campus transportation officials are optimistic — though not yet certain — that the Bear Pass program will continue rolling beyond June, when the two-year pilot period is set to expire.
(16 March)

Awards

(16 March)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(16 March)

Birgeneau to receive Founders Award
Chancellor Robert Birgeneau will receive the Founders Award from the American Academy of Arts & Science on Saturday at a special program in San Francisco commemorating the academy's 225th anniversary.
(16 March)

Herbert McClosky, pioneer in political behavior research, dies at 89
Herbert McClosky, a University of California, Berkeley, political science professor emeritus who used survey instruments to perform pioneering research into political beliefs, attitudes and ideologies, died Monday (March 13) of pneumonia and complications of Parkinson’s disease. He was 89 years old.
(16 March)

Russia scholar George Breslauer named chief academic officer, UC Berkeley's second highest post
George W. Breslauer, a political science professor and Russia specialist at UC Berkeley, will be the campus's next executive vice chancellor and provost, Chancellor Robert J. Birgeneau announced Wednesday (March 15). As the campus's chief academic officer and the chancellor's second-in-command, Breslauer will be responsible for day-to-day campus operations.
(15 March)

Court dismisses lawsuit targeting evolution website
A lawsuit by a Santa Rosa couple who claimed that a UC Berkeley website used evolution to promote religion has been dismissed by a federal judge, who agreed with the university's contention that the plaintiffs lacked standing to sue.
(15 March)

All shook up: Berkeley commemorates 1906 earthquake
In the century since San Francisco was brought to its knees by the great earthquake of 1906, UC Berkeley has emerged as a center of earthquake knowledge in engineering, architecture, finance and more. So perhaps it's not surprising that as we count down the days to the 100th anniversary of that quake, the Berkeley campus is abuzz with programs, displays and performances drawing inspiration from that earth-shaking event.
(15 March)

Cal Day
Cal Day is set for April 22.
(15 March)

Top Iraq war correspondents discuss risking their lives to tell a truth that few want to hear — or to believe
A forum titled "Iraq: Reports from the Frontlines," brought together five influential journalists, including New York Times Baghdad bureau chief John Burns and Washington Post writer Jackie Spinner, who have reported extensively on the Iraq war. They discussed two deeply polarizing questions: Given the extreme danger of the situation in Iraq, are journalists in Iraq even able to cover the real story? And are they getting the story "right"?
(14 March)

New report sets framework for California "green chemistry" policy
California should take the lead in establishing a sustainable policy towards chemical production and use – or risk being left behind in the global economy, according to a new UC Berkeley report. The report establishes a state framework for a move towards "green chemistry," in which products are less toxic, do not accumulate in the body and break down more readily in the environment.
(14 March)

UC Botanical Garden designs book to sprout fun ways for kids to learn math outdoors
"Math in the Garden," a new book produced by the University of California Botanical Garden and the Lawrence Hall of Science provides novel, fun techniques to teach and learn mathematical skills and reasoning.
(10 March)

UC Berkeley, UCLA, UC Santa Barbara and Stanford join to establish Western Institute of Nanoelectronics
University of California, Berkeley; UCLA's Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science: UC Santa Barbara; and Stanford are teaming up to launch what will be one of the world's largest joint research programs focusing on the pioneering technology called "spintronics."
(09 March)

Researchers reach a new audience
The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) recently introduced Women's Adventures in Science, a series of books, targeted to middle-school-age girls, that explore the journey of preeminent female scientists in anecdotally rich, biographical detail. Berkeley is well-represented in the series: Two of the 10 volumes take as their subjects a couple of our own — Inez Fung and Mimi Koehl.
(08 March)

Cells, consciousness, and Shakespeare
Four lectures by three prestigious lecturers in the span of one week will reward the intellectually curious later this month.
(08 March)

Administration control unit merges Budget and Finance with Business and Administrative Services
Effective March 1, Budget and Finance and Business and Administrative Services (BAS) merged to form a new control unit called Administration.

(08 March)

Management-award nominations due March 17
The Berkeley Staff Assembly is seeking nominations for its annual Excellence in Management award. Now in its 18th year, the award provides an opportunity for employees to acknowledge the exemplary contributions of their managers and supervisors.
(08 March)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(08 March)

Suitcase Clinic student volunteers are changing the world, one bare footstep at a time
Berkeley students are known for their commitment to public service. But even in this impressive group, the undergraduate-run Suitcase Clinic stands out for its longevity, scope, and level of commitment. Every Monday and Tuesday, Suitcase volunteers and local practitioners provide basic health-care checkups, vision screening, dental care, chiropractor adjustments, legal advice, employment consultations, foot washing, a discussion group, and other social services to homeless and low-income clients in Berkeley. They also teach a class for would-be volunteers.
(08 March)

Hydrologist, environmentalist Luna Leopold has died
UC Berkeley's Luna B. Leopold, a hydologist who pioneered the scientific study of rivers and inspired generations of scientists and environmentalists, has died at the age of 90. Like his father, famed wildlife ecologist Aldo Leopold, and brother, the late UC Berkeley ecologist A. Starker Leopold, he left a legacy of respect for the land, the rivers and the wildlife.
(07 March)

Conference to explore new ideas for Delta
The rapid urbanization of flood-prone lands in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta -- the water supply for nearly 23 million Californians and habitat for more than 30 fish species -- will be the focus of an upcoming conference at the University of California, Berkeley.
(06 March)

Smallest Triceratops skull described
A cast of the smallest fossil specimen of Triceratops ever found has gone on display at the bioscience library, contrasting the foot-long baby skull with the six-foot-long skull of a mature adult. The fossil skull, now in the collection of the Museum of Paleontology, is telling curator Mark Goodwin a lot about the growth of these giant dinosaurs.
(06 March)

Law clinic to seek human rights for Katrina victims
The federal government's response to the Hurricane Katrina disaster has fostered countless debates, continual reviews and reports and, for many people, ongoing frustration. But in the view of two University of California, Berkeley, human rights experts - individuals who are no strangers to war-torn regions and human rights abuses in developing countries - the U.S. government's handling of the matter has been so poor that an international body needs to investigate.
(03 March)

Susceptibility to pesticides highly variable among Latina women and children
A new study by researchers from UC Berkeley and the University of Washington raises the question of whether current standards for safe levels of pesticide exposure are sufficiently protective of a vulnerable population. The study found that some newborns may be 65 to 130 times more susceptible to exposure to certain organophosphate pesticides than some adults, and 26 to 50 times more sensitive than other newborns.
(02 March)

Helen Prejean brings her sister act to Berkeley
The renowned author-activist, a consummate speaker and storyteller, appeared on campus last week and urged her audience to engage in deeper reflection on capital punishment and the 'machinery of death.'
(01 March)

From Johannesburg to the Kodak Theater
When filmmaker Dan Krauss traveled to South Africa to shoot a documentary in 2003, he knew he was on to something big. His instincts were remarkably good: On Sunday, the J-school grad will stroll down the world's most famous red carpet at the 78th Annual Academy Awards in Los Angeles — as a nominee.
(01 March)

Policing thought after 9/11
Beshara Doumani, associate professor of history, has edited a new book about the combined threats of privatization and coercion to academic freedom, which, he says, "is facing its most serious threat since the McCarthy era of the 1950s."
(01 March)

School of Public Health heroes for 2006 to be honored
On March 17, at its 10th annual Public Health Heroes Awards ceremony, the School of Public Health will honor three individuals and one organization for their meaningful contributions to the protection and promotion of health.
The 2006 honorees are Jeffrey Sachs, Norman McSwain, Robert Scott, and the San Francisco Free Clinic.
(01 March)

Thinking someone else's thoughts
The Face of Poetry (UC Press, 2005) captures the first decade of the Berkeley campus's Lunch Poems Reading Series.
(01 March)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(01 March)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(01 March)

State's chief deputy attorney general joins law school
California Chief Deputy Attorney General Richard M. Frank will join the University of California, Berkeley School of Law (Boalt Hall) as the first executive director of the new California Center for Environmental Law & Policy (CCELP), law school officials announced today (Wednesday, March 1).
(01 March)

Physics Nobelist Owen Chamberlain, co-discoverer of the anti-proton, has died at 85
Chamberlain, who won the 1959 Nobel Prize in Physics with Emilio Segrθ for discovery of the anti-proton, was a long-time fixture of the physics department, and namesake of a chalkboard he often used to explain physics to Cal students.
(01 March)

$100,000 competition to fund UC Berkeley students' best ideas to change the world
Students don't often have access to venture capital, but a group at UC Berkeley has put up more than $100,000 to fund some of Cal students' best ideas for changing the community or the world.
(01 March)

Laugh all you want as Daily Californian launches diversity scholarship with comedy fest
Last year, only 1 of the Daily Californian's approximately 115 employees was African-American, and just a handful were Latino. UC Berkeley's award-winning, student-run newspaper has decided that's unacceptable. On March 2, the Daily Cal will host its first-ever comedy night, with all profits earmarked for a diversity fund to entice a broader spectrum of applicants to join the staff.
(24 February)

Back at the Capitol, top UC officials insist they mean business
Two weeks after UC President Robert Dynes promised the state Senate Education Committee he would revamp the system's culture to embrace "public responsibility and public accountability," Dynes returned to the Capitol on Wednesday with Gerald Parsky, chair of the UC board of regents, who agreed that the "organizational structure and business practices of the Office of the President need to be enhanced."
(23 February)

Project to research U.S. foreign policies to face global challenges
The Institute of International Studies at UC Berkeley is teaming up with the Terry Sanford Institute of Public Policy at Duke University in North Carolina to launch major research on long-range United States policy approaches to global strategic challenges.
(23 February)

Keck funds project to track life cycle of water
Weather satellites do a great job of tracking storms, but what happens to the water after it falls? An ambitious new project funded by the Keck Foundation aims to track the invisible and hidden water in the plants, soil and streams of two UC reserves.
(23 February)

Opinion: The world is round in Berkeley
In a commentary first published in the San Francisco Chronicle, Chancellor Robert J. Birgeneau discusses how California, and particularly UC Berkeley, have important roles to play in an agenda to revitalize basic science education and research. UC Berkeley, along with other world-leading universities in the Bay Area, has in good part driven U.S. global competitiveness in the biotechnology industry through their basic research.
(22 February)

Symposium to explore relationships between drawing by hand and by computer
Has computer-aided design rendered the pencil and pen obsolete? Or is drawing by hand critical to certain ways of thinking, perceiving and understanding? A two-day symposium March 3-4 will explore these questions.
(21 February)

Egyptian journalist and visiting lecturer Hani Shukrallah tackles myth of West vs. Muslim world
The idea that there is an ongoing "clash of civilizations" between the West and the Muslim world — and that recent violent protests by Muslims over offensive cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad are just another scuffle in that war — "is abhorrent and false," visiting lecturer Hani Shukrallah told an audience at the Graduate School of Journalism Feb. 15.
(16 February)

Two UC Berkeley students and one alumna named Gates Cambridge Scholars
Two University of California, Berkeley, students and one UC Berkeley alumna are among 40 new recipients from the United States of Gates Cambridge Scholarships. In October, the trio will join fellow Gates Scholars from all over the world in pursuing graduate degrees at Cambridge University in England.
(16 February)

Rainy-day women
Berkeley's government-affairs team strives to build relationships sturdy enough to withstand the occasional (and inevitable) public stoning.
(15 February)

Setting SMART goals is key to performance management
A greater campus-wide focus on performance management and collaboration between staff and managers will set the stage for next year's salary increases.
(15 February)

Jump-starting a global conversation
Berkeley professor and artist-scholar Trinh T. Minh-ha is in dialogue with the world on issues issues of marginalization, 'radical impurity,' and 'still speed.'
(15 February)

An improbable Catholic
Renowned poet and memoirist Mary Karr, a professor of English at Syracuse University, will be reading her work at Lunch Poems on Thursday, March 2, at 12:10 p.m. in the Morrison Library in Doe Library. The Berkeleyan spoke to her by phone about poetry, memoir writing, and her hard-won faith.
(15 February)

Berkeley moving back up as source of Peace Corps volunteers

(15 February)

Probing the complex workings of DNA
On Wednesday, March 1, Nicholas Cozzarelli, professor of molecular and cell biology, will discuss "Giant Proteins That Push DNA Around: Bullies of the Nuclear Playground" as part of the campus's 93rd annual Faculty Research Lecture Series. A free event open to the public, the talk will begin at 5 p.m. at the Bancroft Hotel, 2860 Bancroft Way.
(15 February)

New Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(15 February)

Extraordinary people: Berkeley senior Bryan Goodwin rolls to his own drummer
Fifth-year senior Bryan Goodwin was born with osteogenesis imperfecta, often called "brittle bone disease." But many of his friends don't ever ask why he's in a wheelchair. Having a disability is just one facet of this fun-loving, right-leaning, club-going legal studies major.
(13 February)

Accepting culpa-bility
At the first of two Sacramento hearings on executive compensation in the University of California system, UC President Dynes pledged to exert more control. Legislators still wonder: will heads roll in Oakland?
(09 February)

Bancroft Library celebrates its centennial with exhibit
The University of California, Berkeley's Bancroft Library is celebrating its centennial by offering a public peek at more than 350 seldom-exhibited objects from its extensive collection of Western Americana during "The Bancroft Library at 100," an exhibit opening Feb. 11 at the Berkeley Art Museum.
(09 February)

John Lie: thinking globally, researching competitively
The dean of International and Area Studies explores new ways to bring the world to Berkeley and get Berkeley out in the world.
(08 February)

If the Bancroft caught fire, what would you save?
Planning the library's centennial exhibition forced curators to make difficult choices: Marshall's nugget, or a stunning edition of Chaucer? The selected items go on view at the Berkeley Art Museum this weekend.
(08 February)

2006 UC summer programs for children
Our annual guide to great programs for kids.
(08 February)

Attention, orchid-gawkers!
For the first time this century, members of the public can commune with members of the Orchidaceae family when visiting the UC Botanical Garden. Dozens of orchid species, many of them rare and endangered, are now on view in the Orchid, Fern, and Carnivorous Plant House, with new specimens rotating in regularly as they come into bloom.

(08 February)

They're not about whether you win or lose
Professor of art practice Greg Niemeyer finds both pleasure and insight in games from Roshambo to Pac-Man.
(08 February)

'The situation is always changing'
The University of California is home to a quartet of internationally known musical improvisers, which will make its Berkeley debut this Saturday at Hertz Hall.
(08 February)

Holding a mirror to America
A scholar of the American South and African American history — one who has made history himself — will be in Berkeley next week as part of a national tour to promote his new memoir, Mirror to America: The Autobiography of John Hope Franklin (Farrar, Straus and Giroux). The internationally known historian will be interviewed by law professor Harry Scheiber, who says his longtime friend is "one of the great American historians, not only for pathbreaking work on the history of African Americans but for his writing on Southern culture, American law and race relations, the Civil War period, and social history."
(08 February)

Brain scans predict cognitive decline in normal people, says new study
Brain scans may detect neurological changes in people who exhibit no outward signs of cognitive decline but who later develop dementia or mental impairment, according to the results of a new UC Berkeley-led study.
(08 February)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(08 February)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(08 February)

Redistricting reform plans could make California's political landscape somewhat more competitive
Redistricting reform could increase the competitiveness of some California Congressional and legislative districts, according to a new study released today by the Institute of Governmental Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.After drawing dozens of potential redistricting plans, researchers concluded that attempting to create more competitive seats while also balancing other criteria would probably produce 12 to 14 competitive Congressional districts and 12 to 17 competitive Assembly seats.
(07 February)

Recruitment efforts pay off: Berkeley's fall 2006 applications set record
When UC Berkeley admissions officials hit the road last fall to recruit the state's best and brightest high school students, their mantra was straightforward: We want you here. And have the courage to compete for a space in the freshman class. Many students got the message. According to numbers released Feb. 7 by campus officials, more than 34,500 California students applied for admission to UC Berkeley's fall 2006 freshman class - a 12 percent increase over last year's numbers.
(07 February)

Forcing viruses to evolve to help, not harm
Evolution is typically a slow process. In the case of a common but benign virus, however, UC Berkeley scientists have found a way to speed up evolution and direct it in a way to make the virus useful: as a delivery vehicle for genes in gene therapy.
(07 February)

Brain hormone puts brakes on reproduction
A hormone first discoverd in Japanese quail turns out to play a major role in the mammalian reproductive system, acting on the brain to put the brakes on reproduction.
(06 February)

Bart McGuire, professor emeritus and noted economist, dies
Charles Bartlett "Bart" McGuire, an emeritus professor of public policy at the University of California, Berkeley, known for his work on the first mathematical framework to predict travel and route choices in urban transportation systems, died Jan. 23 at age 80 at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Richmond, Calif. He had been suffering from cancer.
(06 February)

My mother has brought the Iraq war home to millions of Americans — but especially to me
Martha Raddatz, White House correspondent for ABC News, until recently was reporting in Iraq as senior national security correspondent -- the same job ABC co-anchor Bob Woodruff was doing when injured by a roadside bomb a few weeks ago. Raddatz's daughter Greta Bradlee, a staff member with UC Berkeley's Government Affairs office, tells what it's like to have a mother reporting from a war zone.
(06 February)

Jarralynne Agee does 'the Po thing'
HR staffer Jarralynne Agee's life journey has been shared with a wide audience since seeing print in Po Bronson's new Random House release.
(02 February)

New leadership role for campus in global research
Berkeley has become a charter member of the newly launched International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), a consortium of 10 research-intensive institutions on four continents whose membership ranges from Yale, Oxford, and Cambridge universities to ETH Zurich, Australian National University (ANU), Peking University, and the University of Tokyo.
(02 February)

A plethora of Berkeley events on UCTV in February
The University of California's television/Internet station, UCTV, is offering a particularly rich smorgasbord of faculty lectures, literary readings, and newsmagazines from the Berkeley campus this month.
(02 February)

Opinion
In the Jan. 19 issue of the Berkeleyan, we published an interview with Chancellor Robert Birgeneau focusing on aspects of the executive-compensation issues raised by recent coverage in the San Francisco Chronicle. We here publish a response to portions of that exchange from a campus staff member.

(02 February)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(02 February)

Pesticide combinations imperil frogs
Some 20 to 30 pesticides, herbicides and fungicides are licensed for spraying on corn, and Midwestern ponds reflect this -- they're a brew of chemicals that can persist through the entire growing season. Experiments at UC Berkeley show that the chemical mix, not just one pesticide alone, screws up the sexual development of frogs and makes them prone to a deadly bacterial disease.
(02 February)

Berkeley moving back up as source of Peace Corps volunteers
On the Top 25 list of large schools that produce Peace Corps volunteers, UC Berkeley has moved up a notch to third place, with 82 alumni currently in service worldwide, according to 2006 rankings released this week by the Corps. And in a new Peace Corps category – volunteers with advanced degrees – Berkeley placed seventh, with 13 alumni volunteers.
(01 February)

Timothy J. Clark, noted art historian, awarded Mellon Foundation grant
Timothy J. Clark, a University of California, Berkeley, professor of art history and a leading authority on modern art, is one of four scholars of the humanities to receive an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation distinguished achievement award. Each award is worth up to $1.5 million.
(01 February)

Binary asteroid in Jupiter's orbit may be icy comet from solar system's infancy
Rocky asteroids typically congregate in the inner solar system, corralled within Jupiter's orbit, while the icy comets huddle in the Kuiper Belt beyond Neptune's orbit. But now two icy rocks have been found in the shadow of Jupiter, suggesting that not all comets ended up in the Kuiper Belt during the turbulent infancy of the solar system.
(01 February)

Sir Peter Hall talk kicks off Global Metropolitan Studies program
A talk by Sir Peter Hall, a renowned geographer and authority on the economic, demographic, cultural and management issues facing cities, will launch a new initiative at the University of California, Berkeley, to focus on global metropolitan studies. His presentation is set for 5-6:30 p.m., Monday, Feb. 13, in Wurster Hall's auditorium.
(01 February)

Language affects half of what we see
Philosophers and scientists have long debated whether our native language affects how we perceive reality, and thus whether speakers of different languages might see the world differently. A new study conducted at UC Berkeley demonstrates this is only half true: The right side of our visual field is affected by language, but the left side is not.
(31 January)

"We had no notions of being heroes … we missed normalcy": Sergeant and sophomore Fonda Fan describes her year in Iraq
Fonda Fan, a sophomore English major at UC Berkeley, returned in November from a year in Iraq. Now 20, Sergeant Fan joined the Army Reserves at 17, just after finishing high school.
(30 January)

Ethanol can replace gasoline with significant energy savings, comparable impact on greenhouse gases
Corn-based ethanol is now blended with gasoline in many states, but there is still ongoing debate about whether it's worth the energy and resources needed to grow corn. A new study hopes to resolve that debate. UC Berkeley researchers found that ethanol requires much less oil to produce than gasoline, with comparable environmental impacts.
(26 January)

The Republican right, and how it grew
Political scientist Paul Pierson, co-author of Off Center, says the Republican right has put a hammer-lock on the institutions of government, and voters are the real losers.
(26 January)

The joys of Academic Senate service . . .
The Committee on Committees may sound like a parody, but a former chair says the panel — like other Academic Senate committees — is crucial to shared governance.
(26 January)

From Bubba to Baryshnikov
After 30 years at Cal Performances, head carpenter Danny Nilles has seen 'em all — and worked hard to get their shows off the truck, on the stage, and back on the road again.
(26 January)

An ounce of prevention can avert a million-dollar lawsuit
Staff and academic supervisors and managers, including faculty, who missed the Dec. 31, 2005, deadline for state-mandated sexual-harassment-prevention education are encouraged to satisfy the two-hour requirement as soon as possible.
(26 January)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(26 January)

Life leaves subtle signature in the lay of the land, UC Berkeley researchers report
If all forms of life were suddenly eliminated from the Earth, would a visitor from another planet be able to tell what once was here? Two UC Berkeley scientists addressed this question and concluded that there would be detectable, though subtle effects, including more rounded than angular hills.
(25 January)

The campus context: UC compensation controversy touches Berkeley
Responding to a news story about former Chancellor Robert Berdahl, UC Berkeley Associate Vice Chancellor George Strait details Chancellor Robert Birgeneau's decision about compensation for Berdahl's recent sabbatical leave, and explains why it was in the best interests of the university.
(24 January)

Sneak preview of Spring 2006's coming attractions
Nonfiction readers will rejoice, armchair stem-cell scientists celebrate, and amateur politicos applaud — we hope — when perusing this semester's slate of events. Once again, the campus plays host to a mind-bogglingly broad smorgasbord of offerings.
(24 January)

"We're going to be doing these things for a long time": Two Berkeley staffers recount their Operation Iraqi Freedom deployments
The second of a two-part series in which the NewsCenter asked campus veterans to share their experiences of the everyday reality faced by U.S. soldiers deployed to the Middle East.
(23 January)

New report says climate action promotes economic growth in the state
A new report led by UC Berkeley researchers finds that just eight policy strategies can take California halfway to the greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets established by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2005 while increasing the Gross State Product by approximately $60 billion and creating more than 20,000 new jobs.
(23 January)

Two new dusty planetary disks may be astrophysical mirrors of our Kuiper Belt
In the search for planetary systems like our own, scientists have been peering closely at nearby stars in search of dusty debris disks that presumably accompany planets. UC Berkeley astronomer Paul Kalas has just discovered two new stars -- the eighth and ninth found to date -- that have rings of dust seemginly identical to the Kuiper Belt beyond Neptune's orbit in our solar system.
(19 January)

Getting Berkeley ready for business as unusual
After disaster strikes the region, critical campus functions will need to be resumed. Some 'incredible efforts' to plan for that day have already been made.
(18 January)

Strike up the band… and cue the choir
In this third installment in a series of articles profiling Berkeley's "everyday heroes," students sing the praises of a parade of faculty heroes, whose everyday exploits enrich undergrads' lives.
(18 January)

Compensation controversy: 'This is the marketplace that we operate in,' says Birgeneau
Responding to media coverage of executive compensation at the University of California, the chancellor speaks out about the competitive realities that the system – and the Berkeley campus – must address.
(18 January)

Surfing is safer — and smarter — with flotation devices
It's a truism that the Internet puts the world at its users' fingertips. But it's fast becoming clear that while some parts of the World Wide Web rest on solid ground, much of the information to be found there is about as substantial as fairy dust. To explore the question of online-information quality and provide context for the debate, the Berkeleyan turned to two new faculty members at the School of Information Management and Systems (SIMS) with expertise in this area: Geoffrey Nunberg, a leading linguistics and information researcher who's also a print and broadcast commentator on language, and Paul Duguid, a cutting-edge researcher in organizational knowledge and co-author (with John Seely Brown) of The Social Life of Information (Harvard Business School Press, 2000).
(18 January)

Online tools for every stage in career growth
The Office of Human Resources has launched a new website, The Career Place
(thecareerplace.berkeley.edu), to provide staffers with information to enrich their current job or to help map a path to a new UC position.

(18 January)

News Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(18 January)

Spring classes offer fresh looks at Katrina, bears, Vietnam war, Shakespeare and more
Several courses on Hurricane Katrina's aftermath; another on Cal's mascot and yet another on contemporary interpretations of William Shakespeare are among those being offered to University of California, Berkeley, students starting the 2006 spring semester today (Tuesday, Jan. 17).
(17 January)

No showers and giant rats: Two student veterans share their Operation Iraqi Freedom experiences
here at Berkeley — as for many Americans — the Iraq war is primarily an abstract concept to be debated in terms of geopolitics, domestic security, and international human rights. Largely absent from the discussion is the everyday reality faced by U.S. soldiers deployed to the Middle East. In this two-part series, the NewsCenter asked four veterans on campus — two students followed by two staff members — to share their experiences of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
(17 January)

Henrik Blum, professor emeritus and leader in field of health policy, dies at 90
Dr. Henrik L. Blum, UC Berkeley professor emeritus of health administration and a pioneer in health care reform, has died of cardiac arrhythmia at the age of 90. Blum died Jan. 3 at his home in Oakland, Calif.
(13 January)

Former Chancellor Berdahl returns (briefly) to Berkeley
Former chancellor Robert Berdahl has accepted an offer to head the Association of American Universities in Washington, D.C. He'll begin his new job later this spring after a semester-long return to the Berkeley campus, this time as a faculty member.
(12 January)

Sleuthing out Bay Area mystery novels
Bancroft Library principal cataloger Randal Brandt married his bibliographic research skills with his love of a good whodunit to create the Golden Gate Mysteries website. There you'll find the titles of more than 1,200 Bay Area mysteries, featuring gumshoes as diverse as the names in a Frisco phone book and plots as twisted as Lombard Street.
(12 January)

Annual $30,000 grant established for faculty whose research or service contributes to diversity and equal opportunity
A new grant — the Chancellor's Award for Advancing Institutional Excellence — will be presented annually to distinguished Berkeley faculty members "for distinctive contributions and auspicious success in enhancing diversity and equal opportunity," according to Angelica Stacy, associate vice provost for faculty equity.
(12 January)

Awards
Recent faculty and staff awards.
(12 January)

Obituary
Barbara Shearer, one of the Bay Area's best-loved concert pianists and music teachers, died Dec. 6 of natural causes, in Oakland.
(12 January)

Obituary
It was recently learned that Charles H. "Charlie" Shain, the campus's longtime City and Regional Planning Librarian, died of natural causes in August 2005.
(12 January)

New Briefs
Shorter items of interest to the campus community.
(12 January)

Astronomers find magnetic Slinky in Orion
Using the recently rebuilt Green Bank Telescope, radio astronomers have discovered the first helical magnetic fields in space, coiled like a snake around a giant molecular cloud in Orion and squeezing it into a cigar-shaped filament.
(12 January)

NASA/ESA space probes detect enormous magnetic annihilation event
The sun's magnetic field frequently interacts with the Earth's magnetosphere to produce jets of high-speed particles that interfere with telecommunications around the globe. Now a trio of spacecraft has detected much larger events stretching over an area some 200 times the diameter of the Earth, in a region between our planet and the sun.
(11 January)

Deep-rooted plants have much greater impact on climate than experts thought
A study of deep-rooted trees in the Amazon shows that they don't simply suck in carbon and spew out water vapor. The roots actually store water deep underground in the rainy season and bring it up to the surface in dry periods, thereby boosting photosynthesis and carbon uptake beyond expected levels during the dry season.
(11 January)

Public to look for dust grains in Stardust detectors
Astronomy buffs who jumped at the chance to use their home computers in the SETI@home search for intelligent life in the universe will soon be able to join an Internet-based search for dust grains originating from stars millions of light years away. The project, dubbed Stardust@home, will harness a Web-based virtual microscope to let the public search for several dozen interstellar dust grains embedded in detectors from the Stardust spacecraft, which returns to Earth Jan. 15.
(10 January)

Milky Way galaxy is warped and vibrating like a drum
For half a century, astronomers have puzzled over a mysterious warp in the Milky Way galaxy, seen clearly in the disk of hydrogen gas embedded among the stars. A new map of this gas created by UC Berkeley astronomers shows that the warp is actually a combination of three vibrations or notes, as if the gas were flapping in the wind.
(09 January)

Former UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Berdahl named president of Association of American Universities
The Association of American Universities (AAU), an association of 62 leading public and private research universities, has announced the appointment of Robert M. Berdahl, former chancellor of the University of California at Berkeley, as its new president.
(05 January)

Bancroft Library exhibit materials tell tales of '06 quake
The University of California, Berkeley's Bancroft Library is pulling out the stops to share with the public its extensive collection of materials on San Francisco's 1906 earthquake and fire. The library will open an exhibit, "1906: The Great Quake -- The History of a Disaster," on Jan. 11 in the Bernice Layne Brown Gallery of Doe Library that features The Bancroft's own photos, ephemera, manuscripts and more that tell the dramatic story of the April 18, 1906, disaster and its aftermath.
(05 January)

San Francisco living well with minimum wage law
San Francisco's economy is adjusting relatively well to a minimum wage law that has boosted the city's hourly minimum wage to the top of the national charts, according to researchers at the University of California, Berkeley's Institute of Industrial Relations.
(02 January)

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