UC Berkeley Web Feature
A few words of advice for the incoming chancellor
To give the new chancellor, Robert Birgeneau, and his wife, Mary Catherine, a head start on settling in at UC Berkeley and its host city, we asked students, faculty, and staff if they had any advice for the new arrivals. Not surprisingly for the birthplace of the Free Speech Movement, our respondents had strong opinions on everything from coffee to crosswalks. They did, however, forget to share the most important Berkeley caveat: Don't wear red on Big Game day (or preferably, ever)…
|'Walk around campus as much as you
can. Not only is it the same as having an open-door
policy for people who want to approach you, but you
get a good sense of what's going on just from the snippets
of student and staff conversation you'll hear as you
go by. Another reason to walk: parking is a huge problem
both in the city of Berkeley and on campus.'
—Beth Nitzberg, senior administrative analyst, Athletic and Recreational Sports Office
|'I hope the new chancellor comes in
with both guns blazing, recognizing that leadership
is always in short supply. Too much timidity is often
a recipe for inaction. I hope he or she will also recognize
that while academic excellence is always the first
priority, the university's relationship with and obligations
to the outside world should never be forgotten. And
finally, I have never felt that it was more critical
that the university begin to make itself relevant to
the great host of issues and problems that bedevil
the world. We will ignore at our peril the great opportunity
and the need for universities like ours to be the locus
of discussion on real-world issues.'
—Orville Schell, dean of the Graduate School of Journalism
|'Skip Starbuck's. The best lattes
in town are at Café Milano on Bancroft Way.
Not only are they among the cheapest to be found, they're
richer and better tasting — even the nonfat ones.
And the staff are very efficient and nice.'
—Elsa Tranter, graduate assistant, sociology
|'I hope the new chancellor will take
special care of the campus's "small jewel" departments,
like nuclear engineering. We have only seven or eight
faculty, and yet we compete very successfully against
MIT and the universities of Michigan, Illinois, and
Wisconsin, which have much bigger programs. We're not
alone on this campus; there are a number of other departments
that have a small number of faculty compared to what
they produce. Because we're small, even tiny cuts
have a big impact. And lastly, there desperately needs
to be a crosswalk between Etcheverry Hall and main
campus. One of these
days a student is going to get killed running across
—William Kastenberg, professor of nuclear engineering
|'Listen to the Campanile bells playing.
On Sundays they have concerts in the afternoon, and
they're nice. The music can be really soothing.'
—Jonathan Moussa, Ph.D. candidate in physics
|'Make international students a priority;
pay more attention to their rights and needs on campus,
and how budget cuts affect them. The new restrictions
and fee increases are endangering the diversity on
—Mona El-Sherif, Ph.D. candidate in Near Eastern studies
north you go on campus, the more amicable the students
are. South Siders are more impassioned; North Side
students tend to be less political. If you're going
to put a glass bottle in the trash by accident instead
of in the recycling container, make sure you do it
on the North Side.'|
—Jesse Trutna, almost-graduate (Aug. 2004) in computer science and applied math
|'There's so much
to do here that you have to remember to take time
off and reflect. The Berkeley Rose Garden is good
—Jovy Lam (left), 4th-year American Studies major
'Bring comfortable shoes for walking around campus. It's huge and there are a lot of big hills.'
—Monita Muchell (ctr), 4th-year African American Studies major
'Listen to Proverb 16:3, "Commit your ways to the Lord, and your plans will succeed."'
—Angie Kim (right), English '04
|'Students are nocturnal, and Doe Library
is one of their favorite haunts. We really are the
students' living room, along with the Free Speech Movement
Café next door, where the coffee is always hot.
Both are great places to meet students.'
—Tom Leonard, University Librarian