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Berkeleyan

Berkeleyan

News Briefs

06 December 2007

Berkeleyan takes a break

This is the last Berkeleyan of the fall semester; we'll resume normal weekly publication on Jan. 17, 2008. In the interim, be sure to keep up with campus news and events with daily visits to Berkeley's NewsCenter (newscenter.berkeley.edu).

Holiday closure

The campus's annual energy curtailment will occur this year between Saturday, Dec. 22, and Tuesday, Jan. 1. Four of the days of closure are university holidays: Monday, Dec. 24; Tuesday, Dec. 25; Monday, Dec. 31; and Tuesday, Jan. 1.

However, three days of closure are not holidays: Wednesday, Dec. 26,; Thursday, Dec. 27; and Friday, Dec. 28.

Managers are encouraged to accommodate requests for the use of leave or alternate work schedules that will allow employees to take a break on the days of closure. Managers should let employees know as soon as possible what options they will have for Dec. 26, 27, and 28.

Special arrangements such as alternate schedules, accrual of compensatory time in advance, or reassignment can accommodate employees who choose not to use leave to cover the closure period. Managers who make these arrangements for employees covered by collective-bargaining agreements will want to confirm in writing to the employee that these arrangements are voluntary.

A range of managerial options in this regard, such as telecommuting or working at another location, are contained in this recently archived CalMessage: newscenter.berkeley.edu/goto/07closure.

Fall 2007 student-enrollment data released

More than 34,900 students, including 9,000 new freshman, transfer, and graduate students, are currently enrolled on the Berkeley campus, according to final enrollment data released this week.

Fall 2007 enrollment figures show that there are 34,953 registered students on campus, up from 33,933 enrolled in fall 2006. Among these currently enrolled students are 6,272 new undergraduates and 2,979 first-year graduate students.

Underrepresented students, including American Indians, African Americans, and Chicano-Latinos, make up 16 percent of the undergraduate population, up from 15 percent in fall 2006. Among graduate students, these groups make up 12 percent of the underrepresented student population, compared to almost 13 percent in fall 2006. Women continue to comprise about 54 percent of the undergraduate-student population, while men make up 55 percent of the graduate-student population, up from 54 percent in fall 2006.

For more detailed data, consult the charts at newscenter.berkeley.edu/media/releases/2007/12/03_enroll_table.shtml. The "total student enrollment" charts reflect official final enrollment figures for the current term. The charts containing information on new freshman and new advanced-standing (transfer), students are based on current data that may be revised and updated at the end of the term.

CITRIS webcasts now archived on YouTube

The Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society (CITRIS) has long been an active user of webcast technology, with regular weekly webcasts of its noontime Research Exchange presentations and a variety of other Internet broadcasts. Now, with the launch of youtube.com/citris, archived CITRIS webcasts are all in one virtual location, with more being added as they occur. The site currently archives 26 event webcasts, 15 Research Exchange presentations, and four Distinguished Speaker lectures.

UC to launch data collection for Asian American, Pacific Islander students

The University of California will become the first public higher-education institution in the state to collect and report data on Hmong and other Asian American groups through substantial additions to the ethnic categories on its undergraduate application, UC officials have announced.

The changes are intended to better capture the complexity of the university's Asian American and Pacific Islander student population. Ethnic data are not considered in UC's admissions process but can have a variety of other uses, such as evaluating graduation and retention rates.

Next year's undergraduate application will include 23 Asian American and Pacific Islander categories, with separate categories for the following Asian American groups: Chinese (except Taiwanese), Taiwanese, Asian Indian, Pakistani, Japanese, Korean, Filipino, Vietnamese, Hmong, Thai, Cambodian, Laotian, Bangladeshi, Indonesian, Malaysian, Sri Lankan, and Other Asian.

Pacific Islander categories will include Native Hawaiian, Guamanian/Chamorro, Samoan, Tongan, Fijian, and Other Pacific Islander. UC will also begin reporting Pacific Islanders separate from Asian Americans. Traditionally these groups were combined in summary statistics. This change is consistent with new reporting guidance from the U.S. Department of Education.

UC receiving grants for math- and science-teaching program

The University of California announced on Monday that it has been awarded nearly $5 million in grant money to improve teacher education in math and science.

UC Irvine and UC Berkeley have been awarded two of 12 grants from the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) to implement programs modeled after UTeach, a successful math- and science-teacher-preparation program at the University of Texas at Austin. The grants of up to $2.4 million each followed a competition that included submissions from more than 50 universities nationwide.

The NMSI grants will complement UC's California Teach (Cal Teach) program. Launched in 2005 in consultation with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and California State University Chancellor Charles Reed, Cal Teach is committed to quadrupling the number of UC students trained annually to be math and science teachers, from 250 to 1,000 by 2010-11; CSU committed to train 1,500 math and science teachers a year, for a combined annual total of 2,500.

New benefits, savings for transit users

New and expanded pre-tax transit and parking services - paid for via payroll deduction - are now available to campus staff and faculty thanks to an arrangement between Parking and Transportation and WageWorks, a commute-benefit management company. While BART and Fairfield/Vallejo transit tickets have previously been available on a pre-tax basis - and will continue to be under the new system - employees who use all Bay Area bus systems are now eligible for similar benefits, as are staff who ride trains, ferries, and other modes of public transit. Pre-tax services will also be available for the first time for employees who use parking facilities other than campus lots to access transit and to those who commute by vanpool.

Staff and faculty will also benefit from such new services as year-round, paperless enrollment for transit tickets and Bear Passes, monthly purchases via debit card, and more. For complete details on services and sign-up procedures, visit the P&T website at pt.berkeley.edu.

For the record . . .

In last issue's feature about the identification of a lost 16th-century mass by Professor of Music Davitt Moroney, an editing error misstated the title accorded to the Medici family by Pope Pius V in 1569. Though the family had long sought the status of archduke, the papal decision, when it came, granted Cosimo de' Medici the title Grand Duke of Tuscany - not archduke, as we stated.

Additionally, photo-permissions language for that article reached us only after publication. The engraving of King Charles IX of France was reproduced courtesy of the Bibliothèque nationale de France; the photo of Moroney was taken by Scott Hewitt.

In the same issue, a caption accompanying our page 1 photo of three campus employees with 40 years of service misidentified the School of Law's Liz Duke as Liz Drake.