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UC Berkeley Press Release

Fall semester 2004 about to begin at UC Berkeley

– Fall semester classes begin Monday, Aug. 30, at the University of California, Berkeley, for most of the estimated 32,650 students expected to enroll - including 3,713 freshmen, 1,725 new transfer students and 2,700 new graduate students.

Welcome Week at Cal

New Student ConvocationNew Student Convocation
Meet campus leaders and fellow newcomers at Memorial Glade. Monday, 3:45

Chancellor's receptionChancellor's receptions
Mingle with top faculty and Chancellor Berdahl in the University House gardens. Tuesday-Thursday, 4-5:30

Campanile at sunsetCampanile sunset tours
A rare evening chance to ascend this campus landmark. Tuesday & Thursday, 6:30-8:30

Calapalooza info tableCalapalooza
Activity and resource fair extravaganza. Thursday, 11-2

Jousting at CaltopiaCaltopia
A festival of fun, music and Cal Spirit. Friday & Saturday, 10-6

This coming weekend, "Move-In Day" at the residence halls is a two-day event, Aug. 21-22. "Welcome Week" follows, and this year's Aug. 23-27 activities for students include special campus tours, sunset viewing from the Campanile, a Cal Band parade, opportunities to meet Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl, and workshops ranging from how to get started in undergraduate research to excelling in your first Cal math class.

UC Berkeley students once more are seeing an increase in registration and education fees, a result of reduced state funding to public higher education. For many students - those whose families meet federal guidelines for need - the fee increase will be covered entirely or in part through grants and other forms of financial aid.

The University of California took a 6 percent cut in state funding this year, about half of which will be offset by a third year of increases in student fees - a 14 percent rise for undergraduates, a 20 percent rise for graduate students, and additional increases for graduate students in business, law, optometry and other professional schools.

"This year's reduction in state support for UC Berkeley is similar to, though slightly smaller, than the cut we took last year. The difference is, there is some relief on the horizon," said Chancellor Berdahl. "The groundwork has been laid with the state to stabilize student fee increases starting next year and begin to restore state funding to levels that allow us to sustain Berkeley's preeminence and keep our doors open to qualified students."

On campus this fall, blue and gold aren't the only school colors. Several new environmentally friendly initiatives are making UC Berkeley "greener" than ever. The 2,500 to-go containers used daily in the dining halls are now made of sugar cane, which biodegrades quickly; more excess food will head to homeless shelters; and cafeteria leftovers will be composted at "Berkeley Worms," the campus's worm collective.

For its environmental efforts, Crossroads, the largest of the four dining halls, recently was certified as a Bay Area Green Business by Alameda County officials. Campus officials aim to have the other three certified by fall 2006.

Also new at UC Berkeley this school year is an increased housing supply, renovated landmarks such as Sproul Plaza and Hertz Hall, and buildings that are safer from earthquakes.

One campus residence hall has a new name - the Ida Louise Jackson Graduate House. The former College Durant Apartments now honor a pioneering UC Berkeley alumna who was the first African American woman certified to teach in California and the first African American to teach in Oakland. She died in 1996 at the age of 93.

And up at Memorial Stadium, the Cal football team has earned its highest preseason ranking in 50 years. The Golden Bears placed No. 13 in the Associated Press poll and No. 15 in the ESPN/USA Today coaches' poll.

MEET THE INCOMING STUDENTS

Campus officials estimate that about 22,850 new and continuing undergraduates will register this fall along with 9,800 new and continuing graduate students. Final registration numbers will be available later in the semester.

The oldest incoming student who indicated plans to register is 72; the youngest is 16.

New Freshmen
An estimated 3,713 freshmen are expected to register this fall, a slight increase from last year.

The ethnic breakdown of this group is projected to be about 45 percent Asian American, 32 percent white, 10 percent Chicano/Latino, 8 percent who declined to state their ethnicity, 3 percent African American, 1 percent "other," and 0.4 percent American Indian.

Estimates show that women will represent about 55 percent of the freshman class, up slightly from last fall.

The new freshman class is one of the strongest ever. These incoming students generally scored higher than those in the previous freshman class on standardized tests, and they took more honors and advanced placement (AP) courses.

Overall, 85 percent of the new freshmen come from public high schools. About 27 percent of them are first-generation college students. The percentage of underrepresented minority students who are entering freshmen will be about 13 percent of the class, down from last year by 2 percent.

Geographically, roughly 38 percent of the California freshmen are from the San Francisco Bay Area, 15 percent from other Northern California areas, 25 percent from Los Angeles County, and 22 percent from other Southern California areas.

New Transfer Students
The number of new transfer students, most of them from California community colleges, is estimated at 1,725.

The group's ethnic breakdown is expected to be 41.5 percent white, 30 percent Asian American, 13 percent Chicano/Latino, 9 percent who declined to state their ethnicity; 3 percent African American, 2.5 percent "other," and 0.9 percent American Indian.

New Graduate Students
Campus officials are expecting approximately 2,700 new graduate students to enroll in fall 2004, compared to 2,981 last fall. Women are expected to comprise 47 percent of the new entering class, the same as last year.

These new students hail from every state in the country except North Dakota. Fifty-three percent are from California, 31 percent from other parts of the United States, and 16 percent from foreign countries.

Enrollment for new graduate students who are international students will be about 425 this fall, compared to 469 in fall 2003.

The average age of these new graduate students is 28. The youngest is 19, the oldest 61.

RISING STUDENT FEES

For California undergraduate students living in residence halls, the overall cost of two semesters at UC Berkeley, including educational fees, mandatory health insurance fees, room and board, books and supplies, personal expenses and transportation is now estimated at $21,538 - up from $20,066 in fall 2003.

THIS YEAR
Fees : $6,730**
Room & board: $10,744
Food: $886*
Books & supplies: $1,240
Personal: $1,298
Transportation: $640
Total: $21,538
*Beyond that included in campus meal plan
**Includes $774 student health insurance

LAST YEAR
Fees: $5,828**
Room & board: $10,313
Food: $899*
Books & supplies: $1,158
Personal: $1,208
Transportation: $630
Total: $20,066
*Beyond that included in campus meal plan
**Includes $608 student health insurance

Graduate students in most master's and Ph.D. programs will pay about 20 percent more this year than last, which is less than the 40 percent increase originally proposed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. California residents will pay $7,456.90 per year, which is $727 more than that paid by undergraduate California residents ($6,729.90).

Those in some professional degree programs will be charged a Professional Degree Fee in lieu of the 20 percent general fee increase, though a California superior court last week issued a preliminary injunction against instituting this increase for continuing professional students who initially enrolled prior to Dec. 16, 2002.

On top of a basic fee of $6,651.90 per year, law school students will pay an extra $7,236.50 per year plus a $188 special fee. Business students going for an MBA will pay an extra $7,430.00 in professional degree fees, while those going for a Doctor of Optometry degree will pay an extra $4,337.50 per year. And the few dozen students working on a joint M.D.-Ph.D. through the UC Berkeley/UCSF Joint Medical Program will pay an extra $6,336.50 in the second and third years of enrollment in the program, plus an $188 special supplemental fee.

Graduate students who are not California residents will pay fees of $22,395.90 per year if enrolled in academic programs. Those in certain professional programs will pay $18,896.90 per year in addition to a Professional Degree Fee and possible supplemental fees.

MORE STUDENT HOUSING AVAILABLE

The campus is welcoming its new and returning students with an increased housing supply, and even more rooms will be added in the coming year.

The new Channing Bowditch housing, which opened Aug. 1, adds 228 beds in apartment-style suites. The building, reminiscent of local Craftsman-style architecture, houses upper division undergraduates.

By January 2005, construction will be complete on one new residence hall and one apartment building at Unit 2 on the south side of campus, adding an extra 400 beds by spring semester. Nearly 450 beds in two more residence halls will be added to Unit 1 by August 2005.

When these new residence halls are complete, the campus will have added rooms for nearly 1,200 students over the last three years.

"With the additional housing, the chances are better than ever that we will be able to accommodate students who want to stay on in residential units for their sophomore year," said Roland Addad, marketing manager for the campus's Residential and Student Service Programs.

CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS IMPROVE SAFETY, BEAUTY

Students who haven't stepped foot on Sproul Plaza since June will notice that the best-known entrance to UC Berkeley has been refurbished. The repair and renovation includes new paving stones for improved safety and accessibility.

In July, the campus's $14 million Jean Gray Hargrove Music Library opened its doors, providing state-of-the-art space for the country's top-rated academic music library. The three-story building doubles the space of the old one.

The Department of Music's concert venue, Hertz Hall, is reopening. The retrofit, scheduled for completion by Aug. 30, upgrades the building's seismic rating from poor to good.

Several other ongoing seismic retrofit projects are in the works in campus buildings including Le Conte Hall, the southern portion of Davis Hall and buildings 2 and 10 at the Clark Kerr campus.

Occupants are beginning to move into the Seismic Replacement Building, now called by its address, 2195 Hearst. The building houses campus administrative employees displaced from their original offices because of seismic retrofit work.

Closed through the end of the year for historic repairs and improvements is the North Reading Room of Doe Library.

The demolition of the northern portion of Davis Hall will begin in early September to make way for the new home for the Center for Information Technology in the Interest of Society (CITRIS). The groundbreaking for the new CITRIS building is scheduled for late October. Construction is expected to be complete by the end of 2007.

WELL-KNOWN SPEAKERS TO VISIT CAMPUS

Richard Clarke, the Bush administration's former U.S. counter-terrorism chief whose book "Against All Enemies" and 9/11 commission testimony generated heated debate, will be onstage Sept. 7 at Zellerbach Auditorium. Talking with Clarke will be Michael Nacht, dean of UC Berkeley's Goldman School of Public Policy, and Steven Weber, director of the campus's Institute of International Studies.

Molly Ivins, a best-selling author and syndicated columnist whose Web site says she writes about "politics, Texas and other bizarre happenings," will discuss American politics and more on Oct. 7 in Zellerbach Auditorium. She will be joined in conversation by Orville Schell, dean of the Graduate School of Journalism.

Former Vice President Al Gore, will speak in Wheeler Hall on Oct. 26 about "Global Climate Change: What are the Facts?" After his talk, he will have an onstage conversation with Dean Schell.