Contrary to USDA findings, California has high rate of food stamp participation, says UC Berkeley study
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has significantly underestimated California’s success in getting food stamps to those eligible for them, according to a new study by the University of California, Berkeley’s Data Archive & Technical Assistance (UC DATA) program.
New study looks at Bush administration school reforms
A new study shows that thousands of California schools are falling short of new federal standards, not due to faltering achievement overall, but because their diversity triggers many more hurdles than schools serving more homogenous students. Not succeeding in just one category can spell failure for the entire school, the report says.
Noted vitamin researcher Esmond Snell, former biochemistry chair at UC Berkeley, has died at 89
Esmond Emerson Snell, a leading biochemist and vitamin researcher at the University of California, Berkeley, who discovered several B vitamins, including folic acid, in the mid-1900s, died Dec. 9, in Boulder, Colo.
UC Berkeley student wins prestigious Marshall Scholarship
Elizabeth Wang, a UC Berkeley student with a profound interest in human rights work, has been awarded a Marshall Scholarship, considered one of the highest honors for college students. She will use the scholarship to attend the London School of Economics' master's program in human rights.
Point of View: What's the stereotype of Berkeley, and is it accurate?
Those of us who study or work at UC Berkeley are accustomed to a certain reaction when we first mention the university. People have an image of the place — how we look, the way we dress, even what we think — that may or may not fit reality. We questioned five students randomly about where Berkeley's image and their own experiences overlap.
Winter break empties campus at UC Berkeley
Denizens of UC Berkeley are making for the exits again as the campus heads into its annual winter break. Most campus units will be closed from Wednesday, Dec. 24, through New Year's Day.
Tel Dor, Israel archaeological project seeking summer volunteers
Professor Andrew Stewart has begun the annual recruitment of volunteers for the UC Berkeley summer archaeological excavation at Tel Dor, Israel.
More than 33,000 students are enrolled at UC Berkeley,official fall data show
More than 33,000 undergraduate and graduate students - including about 3,600 new freshmen - are enrolled at the University of California, Berkeley, according to final registration figures released today (Thursday, Dec. 18) by university officials. The data show a slight dip in enrollment, but numbers generally remain comparable to last year's.
Bancroft Library kicks off renovation campaign
Plans to repair and renovate the University of California, Berkeley's 50-year-old Bancroft Library have received a big boost, thanks to a $750,000 challenge grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and an anonymous $5 million gift. Charles Faulhaber, the James D. Hart Director of The Bancroft Library, says the grant announced on Dec. 10 brings total revenues raised and pledged for the upgrade project to $12.5 million, more than half of the estimated $20 million needed.
Single gene plays key role in neural tube defects
Spina bifida and other so-called neural tube defects have decreased dramatically since pregnant women began taking folic acid supplements, but nearly a third of all cases are genetic and unrelated to folic acid deficiency. Though more than 50 genes are known to be involved in spinal cord closure in the fetus, none stood out until now. UC Berkeley researchers have found a single gene that seems to trigger the complicated process of neural tube closure in vertebrates.
Berkeley names new law school dean
Christopher Edley Jr., a Harvard University law professor and national leader in civil rights law and public policy, has been named dean of the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law (Boalt Hall).
Radioactive potassium may be major heat source in Earth's core
The Earth's iron core churns constantly, acting like a dynamo to generate a protective magnetic field around the planet. What fuels this dynamo is primarily heat from the decay of radioactive elements -- or so geophysicists think. New experiments show that radioactive potassium may be a significant source of this core heating.
Ecologist fulfills his dream with mission to space
Charismatic British-born astronaut Piers Sellers thrilled an audience of more than 150 on December 7 with photos and a video of his mission in October 2002 to help construct the International Space Station.
Gene mutation leads to super-virulent strain of TB, finds new study
Disabling a set of genes in a strain of the tuberculosis bacteria surprisingly led to a mutant form of the pathogen that multiplied more quickly and was more lethal than its natural counterpart, according to a new study led by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley. The researchers say the study sheds light on the mechanisms used by a pathogen that now infects one-third of the world's population and kills 2 million people per year.
Shifting responsibility for public services from state to counties led to decreased health spending in California, finds new analysis
After California's 1991 Realignment Bill was enacted, the responsibility for providing health, mental health and social services shifted from the state to the counties. A new analysis, published by the Petris Center at UC Berkeley's School of Public Health, finds that after the bill was enacted, per capita spending for health services fell by about nine percent. Researchers say the brief raises concerns about the effects of decentralizing services.
Berkeley Scholars to Cal program teams current students with area youngsters
It's common knowledge that mentoring helps students with their studies. But what if a fifth grader was guaranteed a mentor for eight years straight, and for four to six hours every week? And what if that student and his or her family received other services to help keep them on track? This kind of attention is more than just a dream for 40 at-risk Berkeley school district middle school students in the Berkeley Scholars to Cal program at Stiles Hall, a non-profit center adjacent to the University of California, Berkeley.
UC Berkeley unveils its first Berkeley Book List for readers everywhere
If there's an intellectually curious reader on your holiday shopping list, consider browsing through the new online Berkeley Book List, the campus's first list of suggested reading material about a variety of academic disciplines. The 88 books, designed primarily for readers at the college reading level and above, were chosen by 15 professors in the College of Letters & Science with expertise in subjects including math, history, geology and anthropology.
UC Berkeley's mid-year graduates will don caps and gowns for Dec. 6 convocation
This year, for the first time, December graduates of the University of California, Berkeley, will dress in traditional caps and gowns for a formal graduation ceremony this Saturday, Dec. 6, at 11 a.m. at Zellerbach Hall.
Stormy Space Weather Slips Through The Cracks
UC Berkeley space scientists have discovered a crack in the Earth's magnetic shield that lets in stormy space weather. This new discovery could help space physicists give better estimates of the effects of severe space weather that disrupts communications and endangers astronauts and satellites.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community
The ‘Queen of Dwinelle’ steps down
On Jan. 2, 2004, Ann Juell will end her long tenure at the university when she retires from her position as an administrative specialist in Educational Technology Services (ETS).
Ron Gronsky: leading by anticipation
In a recent interview with the Berkeleyan, Ron Gronsky spoke at length about a wide range of topics that concern him — both as this year’s Senate leader and as a faculty member of 25 years’ standing whose affection for the campus and its tradition of excellence grows, he insists, the more he learns about them.
Wide net cast in search for next chancellor
The search for Berkeley’s ninth chancellor is gearing up, following Robert Berdahl’s announcement of his intention to step down in June 2004.
Alice Sebold waxes prosaic
“The way I work makes no sense,” said author Alice Sebold, by way of introducing a rapt Zellerbach Hall audience to the topic of her lecture, the creative process. While Sebold’s approach may make no logical sense, by speaking about favorite items she keeps on her desk for inspiration, the author offered insight into both the reasons why she writes and her intuitive approach to the task.
New campuswide e-mail system to replace faltering UCLink
UC Berkeley e-mail experts are pulling a switch on the seasons, with death in the spring – last March's weeklong UCLink meltdown – to be followed by rebirth in the winter, with the planned January launch of a brand new campuswide e-mail service.
Clark Kerr's legacy: 1960 Master Plan transformed higher education
Like so many things Californian, the state’s 1960 Master Plan for Higher Education produced an influential model for America and the rest of the world. Clark Kerr, then president of the University of California, became its chief architect, engineer and skillful shepherd in a role that earned this modest scholar national media attention.
Former UC President Clark Kerr, a national leader in higher education, dies at 92
Clark Kerr, a towering figure in higher education, died Monday, Dec. 1 at the age of 92. As president of the University of California, he was chief architect of the master plan that guided California public higher education for four decades and is still a national model.
Twain Project, English novel in India win MLA prizes
A book about colonialism, culture and the global development of the English novel in India, along with a collection of Mark Twain correspondence, are generating buzz for the University of California, Berkeley.
Bears, Hokies and the BOB: Time to order bowl tickets
It's official - Cal's football team has accepted an invitation to play in the Insight Bowl on Friday, Dec. 26, in Phoenix, Ariz. Cal (7-6) will meet the Virginia Tech Hokies (8-4) of the Big East conference. And now's the time to order tickets for Cal's first bowl appearance since 1996.
What makes volcanoes explode? It's the bubbles
Scientists have wondered for centuries what makes volcanoes explode rather than spew lava their entire lives. The current theory holds that breaking or fragmentation of the rising magma releases bubbles that blow the magma out like champagne from a bottle. Two UC Berkeley geophysicists propose a different theory - that explosions occur only when the release of gas as the magma rises does not keep up with the growth of bubbles.
Hotel, conference & museum complex adjoining campus advances
A vision to develop a hotel, conference, banking and museum complex on the edge of the University of California, Berkeley, campus and downtown Berkeley's new arts district got a boost Thursday as interested developers met with city and university officials.
The new Stanley: nowhere to go but up
A crowd of scientists, campus dignitaries, Berkeley alumni, and staff braved the rain on Friday, Nov. 14, to view the construction site where the Stanley Biosciences and Bioengineering Facility will begin to take shape, now that excavation for the facility has been completed. The California Institute for Quantitative Biomedical Research (QB3) hosted a reception that followed in Hearst Memorial Mining Building.
Budget tops list of issues at Senate meeting
At the fall meeting of the Berkeley Division of the UC Academic Senate, held in Sibley Auditorium last Thursday, one overarching message stood out: the sheer number of significant matters that the Senate and campus have put in motion to address an equally impressive number of challenges.
An admissions briefing for the media
Lead readers from the Office of Undergraduate Admissions did their thinking out loud last Wednesday, evaluating applications from six high-school seniors while members of the media looked on. The exercise came during a six-hour event at which campus officials sought to illuminate for journalists, and ultimately the public, the complex and difficult-to-understand process by which the campus selects a freshman class from among 37,000 applications.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community.
Big Game planners sweat the small stuff
This weekend’s 106th Big Game, on its face, holds elements of excitement — as the Bears travel into enemy territory to defend the Axe, with a bowl berth on the line. The rest depends on the big guys in the padded uniforms and the athletics staffs on either side — the former, who thrive on shock and awe, the latter whose business it is to orchestrate logistics and prevent disruptions.
Mark Twain: long gone, but still prolific
MLK Student Union gets a charge from student-funded solar power system
The University of California (ASUC) and Graduate Assembly (GA) have coughed up $50,000 each from their 2002-2003 and 2003-2004 budgets (and plan to give the same amount next year) to pay for the campus's first-ever solar-power system: 312 photovoltaic cells installed on the roof of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Student Union. The system was turned on in late October and immediately began piping clean energy directly into the electrical grid of a building that is a notorious power hog.
Smallpox selected for genetic mutation that today confers resistance to HIV
In the 2,000 years before its eradication in 1978, smallpox killed as many as 30 percent of all children under 10. According to two UC Berkeley population geneticists, this high mortality rate selected for a genetic mutation that now appears in 10 percent of all Europeans, and coincidentally protects these people from HIV infection.
T.Y. Lin, world renowned structural engineer, dies at age 91
Tung-Yen Lin, a UC Berkeley professor emeritus of civil engineering and a visionary whose pioneering work in prestressed concrete had a profound influence on the design of modern structures, has died. He was 91. Considered one of the greatest structural engineers of his time, Lin earned a reputation for combining elegance and strength in his designs.
Mantis shrimp fluoresce to enhance signaling in the dim ocean depths
Undersea creatures like coral and squid fluoresce in the dim blue light several hundred feet down, but most biologists thought this was nonfunctional -- a byproduct of their pigmentation. Marine biologist Roy Caldwell and others now show that mantis shrimp fluoresce to enhance their spots in the murky depths, both for recognition and to threaten other mantis shrimp.
Friendly rivalry in music and sport mark days leading up to UC Berkeley-Stanford "Big Game" on Nov. 22
Campus community members don’t have to wait until kick-off on Saturday, Nov. 22, for the games to begin. A week before, the two schools start squaring off in a variety of competitions, from organ recitals to Ultimate Frisbee to an a capella sing-off.
Chemistry professor James Cason has died at 91
James Cason, a professor emeritus of chemistry, died Nov. 3 after a short illness. He was 91.
From Bauer to Zarkin, outstanding staff get their due
On Monday, Nov. 3, before an audience of top administrators and their own peers, 31 individual UC Berkeley staff members and four team honorees received Out-standing Staff Awards at a ceremony at Alumni House.
Charitable Campaign benefits Berkeley
With the economy still in stutter-step mode, campus and community programs continue to feel the pinch. One way faculty and staff can help to make a difference is by donating to any campus program or local or national charity through the annual Campus Charitable Campaign.
An incentive to retire?
Faculty members considering retirement may find making that decision a bit easier this academic year, thanks to a recently developed, albeit modest, incentive program.
Richard Wollheim, professor emeritus and authority on art and psychoanalysis, dies
Richard Arthur Wollheim, a University of California, Berkeley professor emeritus of philosophy -- and an authority on psychoanalysis and art -- died of heart failure on Tuesday (Nov. 4) at his London home. He was 80.
Has Bush made us safer? Journalists debate U.S. security in the aftermath of the Iraq war
The question of whether President George W. Bush has made Americans safer hinges on whether the United States was justified in going to war with Saddam Hussein in the first place. That was one of the few points on which two respected journalists, Christopher Hitchens and Mark Danner, agreed in a heated debate Tuesday night. According to Hitchens, "neutralism and nonintervention were never options available to us," while Danner argued that the Bush administration launched the war with Iraq under false and misleading pretenses, and that the ongoing conflict is becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community.
"Dark matter" forms dense clumps in ghost universe
"Dark matter" in the cosmos forms a ghost universe invisible to astronomers, but that doesn't mean its evolution can't be studied. Theoretical astronomer Chung-Pei Ma has found that dark matter forms dense clumps that move much like dust motes dancing in a shaft of light.
Fighting invasives, one root ball at a time
Forays to the Richmond Field Station (RFS), Berkeley’s research and teaching outpost on San Francisco Bay, are part of a campus environmental-sciences teaching program. Under its aegis, students study ecological principles in the classroom, then apply them to field work, and — in some cases — capstone research projects.
Brown at 50: Rekindling the spirit
It’s been nearly half a century since the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its landmark 1954 decision Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, which held that “separate education facilities are inherently unequal.” On Nov. 13 and 14, Boalt Hall’s Center for Social Justice will host “Rekindling the Spirit of Brown v. Board of Education,” a conference and “call to action” on the unfulfilled promise of equal education.
Trackin’ the vibes at Stanley
Federal, academic scientists partner to streamline environmental research
A new era of scientific collaboration for the benefit of the environment began on Oct. 28 as the Californian Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Unit (CESU) held its first planning meeting to set goals for the next five years.
Obituary: Sally Bellows
Sally Bellows, manager of student services for the School of Public Health (SPH), and a longtime member and leader of the Berkeley Staff Assembly (BSA), died on Wednesday, Oct. 22, at her home in Albany.
A bit of the West End in west campus
What God hath joined together no man shall put asunder; God will take care of that.” That’s but one of the observations on wedlock pronounced by the characters in George Bernard Shaw’s Getting Married, which begins a 10-day run at the campus’s Durham Studio Theater on Nov. 14.
UCTV has programs of campus interest to view in November
Keeping up with the rich, varied influx of speakers and events on the Berkeley campus can often feel overwhelming. The solution? Catch up on what you missed on UCTV, the University of California’s own television channel.
Nuclear physicist A. Carl Helmholz, former physics chair, has died
August Carl Helmholz, a professor emeritus of physics who employed cyclotrons and synchrotrons at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory to understand elementary particle interactions, died Oct. 29 at his home in Lafayette, Calif. He was 88.
Scavengers benefit by dining with the wolves, find new UC Berkeley-led studies
Wolves really do wolf down their meals, but they typically can't finish off an entire carcass in one sitting. The result, according to two new studies led by researchers at UC Berkeley, is that a diverse range of scavengers get to pick off the leftovers while the wolves lie down to let their food digest. The research provides evidence of the beneficial role wolves play in the ecosystem, and supports the argument for the reintroduction of one of North America's top predators to Yellowstone National Park.
UC Berkeley responds to Regent Moores' report on admissions
An Oct. 29, 2003 paper written by UC Regent John Moores and his two research assistants continues to contain misleading data and draws incorrect conclusions about the UC Berkeley freshman admissions process.
Snowboarders do tricks, kids get treats on Halloween Eve
Halloween came a night early for about 200 children and the denizens of UC Berkeley's residence halls. Superheroes, pajama-clad babies, disco queens and one tiny bumblebee dragged bags of sweets from dorm room to dorm room as part of All Hall-O-Ween, a special event put on by the Residence Hall Assembly (RHA) for the students of Oakland's Markham Elementary school and their older and younger siblings.
Rain is more lethal for drivers after a long dry spell, says new study
The risk of an accident on a rainy day increases with the length of the dry spell preceding it, according to an analysis by a UC Berkeley researcher of more than one million fatal crashes. However, with each day the precipitation continued, the risk of an accident decreased.
Microbes can shorten shelf-life of non-incubated eggs in the wild, finds new study
Microbial infection has emerged as a culprit for why many birds start incubating eggs in a nest before the clutch is complete, which results in eggs hatching at different times. The practice puts younger chicks at a significant disadvantage and often leads to their death. A research team led by UC Berkeley scientists has found that incubation protects eggs from bacterial and fungal infection.
AAAS announces 2003 fellows, including six UC Berkeley faculty scientists
Berkeley - Six scientists at the University of California, Berkeley, were named fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) today, bringing to 170 the total number of UC Berkeley faculty elected since 1982.
Accurate mapping of plant genome could lead to new generation of hybrid plants
Scientists at UC Berkeley and the Salk Institute in La Jolla, Calif., have accurately mapped the genes of the Arabidopsis plant, a mustard weed considered by biologists to be the equivalent of the fruit fly for genetics research. The research could lead to a new generation of genetically modified plants that can grow faster, produce more food and resist disease.
The proof is in the plotting
For four decades, EOP has sent students a message of support
EOP’s charge is to enroll, retain, and graduate low-income California residents who are the first in their families to attend college. The program works on a number of fronts to help freshmen and transfer students find their footing at Berkeley.
Retiree employment pilot program takes off
Where do campus hiring managers turn now that the Temporary Assistance Program (TAP) has ended? The UC Berkeley Retirement Center hopes to provide a partial solution to that quandary with the Retiree Return to Work Pilot Program that they co-developed with the Office of Human Resources/Employment Services.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley community
Realignment of functions will lead to a more effective campus
Chancellor Robert Berdahl last week announced changes in the campus’s administrative structure, the latest in a series of steps toward increased organizational effectiveness that have been a hallmark of his years in office.
Flares near our galaxy's central black hole indicate rapid spin
Flares in the very core of our Milky Way Galaxy hint at a spinning supermassive black hole at the center, according to new observations from ground-based telescopes equipped with razor-sharp adaptive optics.
UC Berkeley study assesses "second wave" of outsourcing U.S. jobs
A ferocious new wave of outsourcing of white-collar jobs is sweeping the United States, according to a new study published by University of California, Berkeley, researchers, who say the trend could leave as many as 14 million service jobs in the U.S. vulnerable. Study authors Ashok Deo Bardhan and Cynthia Kroll, both researchers at the Fisher Center for Real Estate and Urban Economics housed at UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business, advise that not all of an estimated 14 million vulnerable jobs are likely to be lost. But, they note, jobs remaining in the United States could be subject to pressures to lower wages, and the jobs that leave may slow the nation's job growth or generate losses in related activities.
Federal, academic scientists partner to streamline environmental research
Nine University of California campuses, three California State University Campuses, and six federal agencies join expertise as the newly established California Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Unit holds its first planning meeting to set goals for the next five years.
Amount of new information doubled in last three years, UC Berkeley study finds
If you feel like you're experiencing information overload, a team of University of California, Berkeley, researchers have a good idea why. Worldwide information production has increased by 30 percent each year between 1999 and 2002, according to the team led by professors Peter Lyman and Hal Varian of the School of Information Management and Systems.
Roger Montgomery, former UC Berkeley dean, professor emeritus and architect, dies
Roger Montgomery, a former dean of the University of California, Berkeley's College of Environmental Design, an emeritus professor of both the architecture and city and regional planning departments, and a long-time champion of affordable housing, social equity and historic preservation, died Saturday (Oct. 25) at his Berkeley home. He was 78.
Toward a more effective campus
Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl has announced several changes in the campus’s administrative structure, aimed at making the campus a more effective organization. A Q&A explains what is changing, why it’s changing, and what it means for campus staff.
New briefs find relatively few hospitals providing bulk of charity health care in the state
California policy makers are debating whether non-profit hospitals deserve the tax breaks they get. A key element in this debate is the amount of charity health care these hospitals provide for the medically indigent and uninsured. But because the state provides no clear guidelines for what determines charity care, the dollar figures involved can vary 12-fold from $437 million to $5.3 billion in a single year, according to a series of three policy briefs released by the Nicholas C. Petris Center at UC Berkeley's School of Public Health.
Framing the issues: UC Berkeley professor George Lakoff tells how conservatives use language to dominate politics
UC Berkeley linguistics and cognitive science professor George Lakoff has cofounded something very rare in the United States: a liberal think tank. In this interview he tells why the "Democrats just don't get it," why Schwartzenegger won the recall election, and how conservatives have successfully defined the issues for debate for the last 20 years.
Hollywood's Rob Reiner tells students he's keeping an eye on the governor's mansion
Actor-activist Rob Reiner visited a political science class on October 22, criticizing California voters for electing a governor with no experience while at the same time affirming his (qualified) support of Arnold Schwartzenegger. Reiner himself has been mentioned as a gubernatorial candidate, and may yet run for the office.
Frank Pitelka, professor emeritus of zoology who studied bird behavior, dies at age 87
Frank Alois Pitelka, a professor emeritus of zoology who contributed greatly to to Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, died Oct. 10 at the age of 87. For decades, he studied the ecology and behavior of shorebirds and other tundra animals in the Alaskan Arctic. He also won the campus's Distinguished Teaching Award in 1994.
Car sharing spurring fundamental travel changes, says UC Berkeley study
San Francisco Bay Area's City CarShare, a non-profit car sharing organization, is showing measurable impacts in reducing vehicular travel, individual transportation costs, private car ownership, and environmental hazards, according to a new University of California, Berkeley, report.
Peace Pole to be planted Friday in People's Park
Coinciding with United Nations Day, on Friday, Oct. 24, a Peace Pole will be installed Friday at 4:30 p.m. in People's Park in the Roots of Peace Garden. The garden is a collaboration between the Roots of Peace organization, which is donating the pole, UC Berkeley, and the People's Park Community Advisory Board.
All the news that fits, they print
Sorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community
A quirky, comfortable chunk of Quercus
Campus recovers $40K for Strawberry Creek damages
For aquatic life in Strawberry Creek, March 22, 2002, EH&S plans to use funds reimbursed by negligent subcontractor for stream stewardship.
Open Enrollment presentations for active faculty and staff employees
Schedule of Open Enrollment presentations for active faculty and staff employees
‘Weirdly optimistic’: Michael Moore at the Greek
Academy Award-winning documentarian and all-around progressive gadfly Michael Moore greeted a sold-out, manifestly liberal Greek Theatre audience on Saturday.
Chancellor’s staff address is met with frustration, skepticism by some
The chancellor’s annual address to campus staff, organized by the Berkeley Staff Assembly, is typically no lovefest. In recent years, questions addressed to Chancellor Berdahl have touched, pointedly at times, on such topics as faculty/ staff relations, budget constraints, increased workloads, and salary increases (or the lack thereof).
Colorado cave yields million-year-old record of evolution and climate change
Pack rat middens in Colorado's Porcupine Cave contain a 400,000-year record of vole populations going back a million years, providing paleontologists with an unprecedented picture of how climate change affects mammal evolution.
Professors follow pundits with research on recall's effects
After political strategists, pollsters and journalists assembled at UC Berkeley on Saturday to analyze the California gubernatorial recall, professors from across the state met to map out their own strategies for dissecting the election and discerning lessons to be learned from it.
Sniff and smell are equally important in the brain's perception of odor
Imagine the smell of coffee in the morning. Did you close your eyes and inhale deeply through your nose? Neuroscientists at the University of California, Berkeley, found that most people do. In the Oct. 19, online issue of Nature: Neuroscience, in the article, "Olfactomotor Activity During Imagery Mimics That During Perception," the researchers explain how they arrived at this conclusion, and detail other findings of their research.
Biotech panel marks 50th anniversary of DNA double helix discovery
The pioneers and major players of biotech gathered at Berkeley to contemplate the past and future path of the industry. Story includes four video clips.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community.
Dangerous herbal readily available through Web despite FDA import ban
UC Berkeley researcher Lois Swirsky Gold warns of an herbal product - Aristolochia - that has been banned by the FDA yet still is readily available through the Internet. It has been shown to cause rapid kidney failure and cancer of the urinary tract. Though herbal supplements are not regulated in this country, Gold urges the FDA to come up with a way to regulate Internet sales of herbals known to be dangerous.
Work/life policies and programs are of keen concern on campus
Congress proclaimed October National Work and Family Month. How is that relevant for people who work on campus? Here at Berkeley, it’s long been acknowledged that for faculty and staff to stay productive, they need support to balance the demands of work and family.
Recent publications by campus faculty.
Radar and Fine Wine: Innovative research uses radar to map soil moisture, create better wine grapes
Soil moisture is key to growing quality wine grapes, but accurately monitoring the soil's water content is a difficult and expensive task. Now, innovative research led by UC Berkeley scientists is lending a high-tech hand to the fine art of grape growing with the use of ground penetrating radar to monitor soil moisture.
How to get a new department chair
If your ergonomic needs have put you in the market for new piece of furniture, visit the Ergonomics Showroom, recently relocated to the Tang Center. You can try out a new chair, keyboard tray, or computer table with the help of an expert.
The builders of Berkeley
The generosity of private donors has been central to the success of the University of California since its founding in 1868.
NSF awards $5.46 million to UC Berkeley and USC to build testbed for cyber war games
Cyber war games will soon begin, and the players will be researchers seeking to protect networks from computer attacks. Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Southern California are teaming up to build a large-scale cybersecurity testbed for the development of new defenses against computer worms and viruses. Through the project, funded by a $5.46 million NSF grant, researchers will put cyberdefense technologies to the test by unleashing malicious codes onto the network.
Charles Wilke, co-founder of UC Berkeley's Department of Chemical Engineering, dies at age 86
Charles R. Wilke, one of the founders of the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, and a pioneer in the field of biochemical engineering, died on Oct. 2 at his home in El Cerrito.
Nobelist James Watson headlines Berkeley symposium on DNA and biotech
Nobel Laureate James Watson and a who's who of scientists and biotech pioneers gathered at Berkeley to review what we've learned and where science is heading 50 years after the discovery of the double helix structure of DNA.
U.S. has higher birth, marriage rates than Western Europe, despite lack of family-friendly policies
Despite the United States having some of the least generous family policies, birth rates are higher in the United States than the rest of the western world. In addition, the U.S. Government is putting money into promoting marriage, yet the marriage rate in the U.S. is higher than any other industrialized nation.
Major decisions: Look before you leap on an academic path
Nail down "Where are you going to college?" and almost immediately you face "What's your major?" Despite the pressure to think otherwise, you don't need to have an answer right away. In fact, Berkeley student advisers encourage you to spend a few semesters window-shopping before declaring a major. It may mean resisting peer and parental prodding, but as many students confirm, you'll likely be happier in your university niche.
Recall news focused primarily on Schwarzenegger's campaign
California's Gov.-elect Arnold Schwarzenegger benefited from lopsided media attention during the pivotal first weeks of his campaign, according to a study by a policy research center at the University of California, Berkeley, and Stanford University. "Californians were bombarded with messages about Schwarzenegger's candidacy, cast in a positive or negative light, for most of the campaign," said Bruce Fuller, a UC Berkeley professor of education and public policy who headed the study. "Soon thereafter, his (Schwarzenegger's) support rose from 20 percent to over 40 percent of those polled."
Awards honoring members of the campus community
Accreditation team set to visit Berkeley
For the past several years, the campus has been turning a mirror on itself in preparation for a once-a-decade renewal of its institutional accreditation.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community
Campus responds to L.A. Times reporting
A story that appeared in the Los Angeles Times on Saturday, Oct. 4, grossly mischaracterized some results of Berkeley’s 2002 admissions process, campus officials said this week.
The 7th annual spoonbill migration
A flock of about 150 black-faced spoonbills will arrive just outside the University of California, Berkeley's Kroeber Hall on Thursday (Oct. 9). They are the creation of environmental design students interested in the fate of the endangered bird that winters in Taiwanese wetlands.
Scholars from around the world heading to UC Berkeley to discuss the history of children and issues facing them
Scholars from around the world will present recent research findings on a new subject — the history of children — at an upcoming conference at the University of California, Berkeley, in an effort to move children onto a broad academic and social agenda. The conference, Childhood: A World History, to be held Oct. 10-11, will take up topics ranging from infant mortality and puberty to toys and the representation of children in art. It is free and open to the public.
Homecoming Week at Cal: everything from an ice cream social to a panel of '60s activists
For the first time since 1964, a campus-wide Student Homecoming was held at Cal. Activities ranged from a Homecoming banner competition to a battle of the brains between students and faculty.
Energy and resources professor and former UC Santa Cruz Chancellor Mark Christensen has died
Mark Christensen, who helped facilitate the establishment of Berkeley's Energy & Resources Group 30 years ago, died Oct. 2 at the age of 73. The second Chancellor of UC Santa Cruz for a brief time in the 1970s, Christensen retired in 1994 and was living in Carmel.
New treatment for Sudden Oak Death approved based upon research by UC Berkeley plant pathologist
On Oct. 1, state regulators opened the door for a new treatment for Sudden Oak Death to be used on oaks and tanoaks in California. The decision was made based upon research by Matteo Garbelotto, adjunct assistant professor of ecosystem sciences and cooperative extension specialist at UC Berkeley's College of Natural Resources. It is the first and only treatment approved by the state for use against a pathogen that has killed tens of thousands of coastal oak trees from California's Big Sur to the border of Oregon.
The Class of ’68 takes a look back
Fall Arts Fest expands its reach
Building on last year’s success, the second annual Fall Arts Fest will be held Saturday, Nov. 8, at the Berkeley Art Museum.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community.
‘Wurster Redux’ celebrates CED milestones
With its homecoming to a newly renovated Wurster Hall, the architecture department turning 100, and six other college milestones to toast, the College of Environmental (CED) has much to celebrate. And celebrate it will Oct. 9-12, with a flurry of events flying under the title “Wurster Redux.”
Chancellor says he’ll step down next June
Robert M. Berdahl, the eighth chancellor of the Berkeley campus, announced on Sept. 25 that he will step down in June 2004.
‘We need to keep going full speed ahead’
On Monday, Chancellor Robert Berdahl was interviewed by Berkeleyan Editor Jonathan King about the work he’s completed during his tenure, and what priorities remain to be addressed during his final months in office.
Nobelist James Watson headlines celebration of DNA & biotech
A half century ago, James Watson and Francis Crick discovered the true structure of DNA, the famed double helix. That discovery unleashed biologists and led, less than 25 years later, to the discovery of a way to stitch genes together - the basis of the biotechnology industry. With numerous biotech drugs and therapies now on the market, biotech founders and Nobelists, including Watson, are gathering Oct. 11 to celebrate the 50th anniversary and look to what the future promises.
Maria Bailey and daughter Vanessa are taking on UC Berkeley together
Spend ten minutes or so with Maria and Vanessa Bailey, and you realize that they're more than just mother and daughter — they're a fiercely loyal, supportive team of two. They share housing, a car, a laptop, and a longtime dream that's finally turned into reality. They both became UC Berkeley students this fall.
"Starving the government": Economist Paul Krugman argues what the Bush administration's tax cuts and foreign policy have in common
The Bush administration's tax cuts and the Iraq war are part of a pattern of misrepresentation by the government that deserves to be called dishonesty, said noted economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman. Krugman lectured on "The War in Iraq and the American Economy" before a packed auditorium at the Haas School of Business, but his real topic was a right-wing agenda that has the unfortunate effect of making him feel like a "paranoid conspiracy theorist."
Haste Street closed September 29-October 7
Haste Street between College Avenue and Bowditch Street is scheduled to be closed to vehicle traffic from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays only from Sept. 29 to Oct. 7. The closure is needed to deliver and install granular fill material for the construction project underway at Unit 2.
Pioneering vision researcher Russell De Valois has died at 76
Russell De Valois, a professor of psychology and vision science, died Sept. 20 after an automobile accident in Wyoming. The 76-year-old De Valois made seminal contributions to the theories of color and spatial vision, and was still active in research and writing.
UC Berkeley extends public comment period on land use plan
The University of California, Berkeley, has announced a 10-day extension of the public comment period for the Notice of Preparation of the new Long Range Development Plan. The comment period will now end on Oct. 10. Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl approved the extension today (Thursday, Sept. 25) following recent requests from Berkeley city officials and members of the community who felt they needed additional time to review the documents.
The Berdahl years: A chronology
A timeline of Robert M. Berdahl’s years as chancellor of UC Berkeley
UC Berkeley chancellor announces he'll step down in June 2004
UC Berkeley's eighth chancellor, Robert M. Berdahl, said today that he will step down from his post in June 2004 after seven years on campus. Berdahl, 66, called his time as UC Berkeley's chancellor "the greatest privilege and honor of my life." UC President Richard Atkinson lauded Berdahl, who will take a year's sabbatical and then return to campus to teach and continue scholarly work, as "an eloquent and outstanding leader for the Berkeley campus and will be greatly missed."
Computer model clears up immunological conundrum
In a perfect example of the merger of theoretical and experimental biology, a UC Berkeley chemist and chemical engineer has helped clear up confusion over a potentially important part of the body's immune response -- how viruses and cancer cells trigger a T cell attack.
Home-treated water no better than plain tap in preventing gastrointestinal illness, finds new study
A new study led by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, should make some people feel better about the next cool glass of tap water they get at home. A year-long randomized study found that, in homes served by well-run water districts, an in-home water treatment device provided no additional protection from gastrointestinal illness.
Community shares ideas, concerns on long-range campus plans
More than 125 Berkeley residents came together Sept. 22 to share their thoughts, concerns and suggestions on the long-range growth and development of the University of California, Berkeley.
Berkeley students to hold their first campus-wide homecoming since 1964
For the first time in 39 years, students at the University of California, Berkeley, will hold a campus-wide homecoming. The tradition, which was celebrated at UC Berkeley as far back as 1923, died out in the turbulent, highly political atmosphere of the mid-1960s.
Photography students take a look at the city
Identity Resources website offers guidelines for designers and editors
A new website will offers design and editorial guidelines for campus communications.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community
Long-serving campus staffers honored
On Tuesday, Sept. 16, more than 300 Berkeley employees with between 10 and 40 years of service to the campus were honored at a luncheon in Pauley Ballroom sponsored by Chancellor Berdahl and the Office of Human Resources (OHR). This is the third year the event has been held.
They may not win...
Like most debates among candidates for any prestigious political office, the Sept. 15 campus forum featured gubernatorial hopefuls articulating their differing positions on fiscal issues, social policy, and campaign reform. But at this particular debate, hosted by Berkeley’s Center on Politics, something seemed a little different.
Homecoming gets even livelier
Student Homecoming 2003 is the first campuswide student homecoming since 1964.
Undergrads prosper on the Potomac
Professor emeritus Patrick Wilson, librarian and philosopher, dies at 75
Patrick G. Wilson, emeritus professor in the University of California, Berkeley's School of Information Management and Systems and former dean, died of heart failure in San Francisco on Monday, Sept. 12. He was 75.
Regents review 2004-05 budget options
With the state of California still facing an $8-billion budget deficit, the UC Board of Regents has begun preliminary discussions regarding the possibility of further budget cutting in the 2004-05 fiscal year.
Homeland Security names Berkeley students to fellows and scholars program
Six University of California, Berkeley, students are among 101 students across the nation who were named this week to the new Homeland Security Scholars and Fellows Program at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Office of Science and Technology. Thirteen of the fellows and scholars hailed from California.
Theater professor stages adaptation of J.M. Coetzee's "Foe"
Peter Glazer is gearing up for the University of California, Berkeley, stage premiere of his adaptation of South African author J.M. Coetzee's 1986 takeoff on the classic, "Robinson Crusoe." A veteran stage manager, director, playwright - and a professor at UC Berkeley's Department of Theater, Dance and Performance Studies - Glazer has Coetzee's blessings to present his theatrical version of the novel, "Foe," at the campus's Zellerbach Playhouse Oct. 3-19.
Four young scientists lauded by national magazines
This month, two popular science magazines, Technology Review and Popular Science, published lists of the world's top scientists and innovators. Four were from UC Berkeley, working in areas ranging from nanotechnology to planetary science. And they're all 35 or under.
UC/Cal State project promotes using waste heat from power generation to heat and cool buildings
The Department of Energy has chosen UC Berkeley as the lead partner in a Southwest regional center to encourage the use of "combined heat and power" systems, which capture waste heat from electricity generation to heat and cool buildings. The UC/Cal State collaboration will help businesses assess the feasibility of these small-scale systems and encourage installation.
Save the Dirt: Researchers find pristine soils losing out to farming and development
A new UC Berkeley study may cause some people to rethink the phrase, "common as dirt." In a paper published in the current issue of the journal Ecosystems, researchers find that pristine soils are becoming increasingly rare, with some at risk of becoming extinct.
New center to improve technology-enhanced teaching and learning of science
Science education does not yet take full advantage of modern technology, says Marcia Linn, a University of California, Berkeley, education professor. But as principal investigator of the new Technology-Enhanced Learning in Science center, she hopes that's about to change. The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded $10 million for the center, which is designed to bring together teachers, students, researchers, policy-makers and high-tech designers from Berkeley to Boston to study how instructional technology can improve science education in grades 6 through 12. It also will create classroom-tested technological tools to be woven into science teaching.
Vice Provost Christina Maslach tackles the mystery of fostering faculty-student interaction
In a survey of students last spring, 80 percent of graduating seniors said they thought it was important to work on research with a faculty mentor. However, less than half of them reported actually having done so. As Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, Christina Maslach has made improving faculty-student interaction a major mission, and as a professor of psychology, she's asking students to explore the issue through a Freshman Seminar called "Getting to Know the UCB Faculty."
A Greek tragedy graces the Greek
This weekend, Cal Performances celebrates the Hearst Greek Theatre’s centennial with two presentations of Euripides’ Medea, performed by the National Theatre of Greece in modern Greek, with English supertitles. The performances, which mark the American premiere of this acclaimed production, will be Saturday, Sept. 20, at 8 p.m., and Sunday, Sept. 21, at 7 p.m.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community
Activist Dolores Huerta appointed to UC Board of Regents
In the wake of her appointment to the UC Board of Regents last week, United Farm Workers co-founder Dolores Huerta said Monday that diversity — not only among UC students but also among faculty and administrative staff — will be one of her top concerns as regent. Huerta, 73, will fill out the remainder of the term of Norman Pattiz, which expires March 1.
Annual ceremony to honor the past year’s deceased has become a new campus tradition
A year ago this month, Cal paused for one hour to honor members of the campus community who had died during the preceding year. Now, in what is a new tradition, family, friends, and colleagues of the recently deceased will gather on the west side of California Hall from 12:10 to 12:50 p.m. on Tues., Sept. 23, for the annual campuswide memorial.
Students initiate effort to combat harassment and hate on campus
On Wednesday, Sept. 10, Chancellor Robert Berdahl formally commissioned a joint student-administration task force to recommend actions that the campus can take to combat incidents driven by racial, ethnic, religious, and gender hatred and intolerance.
Economic stress in Germany linked to decline in male births
Those trying to guess a baby's gender can forget about the lunar cycle at the time of conception and other myths. A new study by a UC Berkeley researcher finds that a country's dramatic, faltering economy may be a powerful determinant in the number of boys that are born. An analysis of half a century of birth records in East Germany revealed a significant drop in male births in 1991. At the time, the country was reeling from the collapse of Communism and the transition to a new economy.
UC Berkeley chancellor to announce university/community partnership awards
Chancellor Berdahl and his wife, Peg Berdahl, will present awards this Thursday to eight innovative programs that represent exemplary partnerships between UC Berkeley and northern California community groups.
Court decision to delay recall election justified by concern over punch card ballots, expert says
"Punch cards throw away votes," says UC Berkeley professor Henry Brady, reacting to a federal court of appeals ruling that California's Oct. 7 gubernatorial recall election should not proceed until the entire state had replaced punch cards with modern voting systems.
Conference probes environmental impact of federal water policy
More than a decade after Congress passed a landmark reform to the way federal water projects in California are managed, experts from government, academia and industry gathered at a UC Berkeley-sponsored conference to assess the law's effects.
Korean satellite to measure galaxy's UV glow
An inexpensive experiment to measure the Milky Way's ultraviolet glow will rocket into orbit Sept. 26 aboard South Korea's first scientific satellite. The experiment is a collaboration between Korean and UC Berkeley scientists, and will complete the first all-sky survey of the far ultraviolet light given off by warm interstellar gas.
"More federal grant dollars": Berkeley administrator defends student financial aid before Congressional committee
Richard Black, UC Berkeley's Assistant Vice Chancellor for Admissions and Enrollment, testified today before the Congressional Advisory Committee on Student Financial Aid in defense of four-year Pell grants. Berkeley has more Pell grant recipients than any other campus than UCLA.
Using packed silver nanowires as sensitive explosives detector
Tiny wires no wider than a virus are hard to manipulate, but chemist Peidong Yang has found a way to pack trillions of these nanowires together to form a large surface ideal for chemical sensing. To demonstrate the possibilities, he built a sensitive explosives detector.
UC Berkeley's Greek Theatre turns 100 years old this month
The Greek Theatre is 100 years old. Through the years, it has seen numerous commencement convocations, as well as productions by famous actors and actresses. The school is commemorating the anniversary with a production of Medea.
Bancroft Library adds photo archives of Michelle Vignes
The Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley, has acquired the archives of photographer Michelle Vignes, who documented Native Americans' 1969-71 occupation of Alcatraz Island, the American Indian Movement and other major social movements of the last half-century. From the American Indian Movement, the Monterey Jazz Festival, the Altamont rock concert, and the "Human Be-In" in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park, Vignes has been on hand to photograph it. She also documented Vietnam War protesters burning draft cards, recorded daily life in Mexican pueblos, shot a series on Oakland's vibrant blues scene, and even spent time snapping the shutter at a truck stop.
Donald Dahlsten, leading expert in biological control and forest entomology, dies at 69
Donald Lee Dahlsten, a professor of insect biology at the University of California, Berkeley, whose work in biological control gave California officials a powerful weapon in their fight against a fast-spreading tree pest, died Wednesday, Sept. 3. He was 69. Over the course of his 40-year career, Dahlsten developed a reputation as one of the world's most respected leaders in biological control, a field that had gained momentum in the 1960s as an alternative to the increasingly ineffective use of chemical pesticides.
Retired professor Jesse Rabinowitz dies at 78
Biochemist Jesse Rabinowitz, an expert on folic acid and an avid photographer, has died at the age of 78.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community.
UC Berkeley project focuses on information technology, homeland security
A new project at the University of California, Berkeley, is assembling leading scholars and scientists to explore information technology and homeland security. The group first will examine how technology can better assess and mitigate risk for vulnerable ports and financial systems. The Information Technology and Homeland Security Project - based at the campus's Goldman School of Public Policy and the Berkeley Roundtable on the International Economy (BRIE) - is kicking off with "Managing the Unbounded Risk," a Sept. 18-19 conference.
Campus opticians to provide free vision screening for primary-school students
This fall, several white vans, each loaded with two professors, four graduate students, and crates of equipment, will begin rolling out of the School of Optometry on their way to elementary schools in the city of Berkeley, to begin a sweeping vision screening of the district’s children — including all kindergarteners, second-graders, and fifth-graders.
Special ‘budget edition’ of Bear in Mind now on web
ETS launches new Multimedia Services team
This fall, Educational Technology Services (ETS) will launch a new Multimedia Services team to provide centralized multimedia services to the Berkeley campus. The team will be run by ETS professionals and staffed by students.
Pacific Film Archive to screen French feminist’s works
UC Berkeley survey finds business support for health insurance reform
California employers generally support health insurance reform, and reform costs would be modest for most businesses, according to results of a survey released today by researchers at the Institute for Labor and Employment at the University of California, Berkeley. Their report comes as the state Legislature considers action on proposed health insurance reform in the form of Senate Bill 2. The bill emerged from a conference committee on Tuesday and will be voted on by the Senate and Assembly before the two adjourn on Friday.
Vice Provost Webster to retire at year’s end
William Webster, the campus’s first vice provost for academic planning and facilities, has announced his retirement, effective December 31, after 34 years of service to UC Berkeley.
Student-initiated effort will combat harassment and hate
UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl today (Wednesday, Sept.10) formally commissioned a joint student-administration task force to recommend actions that the campus can take to combat incidents driven by racial, ethnic, religious and gender hatred and intolerance.
The Academic Senate’s mysterious little men
Physicist Frank Crawford, who worked on bubble chambers, supernovas and adaptive optics, has died at 79
Frank Crawford may have been the only member of the physics department ever to hold a Telegraph Ave. vendor's license. In the 1970s, he could be seen on the street playing and selling the "corrugahorn" he invented, but during his long career at UC Berkeley and LBNL he contributed to many areas of physics. He died this summer at the age of 79.
Recall election sparks campus registration drive for more voters
Next month, Californians get another crack at choosing the state's chief executive, plus a chance to weigh in on the hot topics of spending and race. UC Berkeley leaders are working hard to ensure that the voices of Cal students, faculty and staff will be heard in this historic vote.
Renowned UC Berkeley professor and philosopher Donald Davidson dies at 86
Renowned philosopher Donald Herbert Davidson, University of California, Berkeley, Willis S. and Marion Slusser professor emeritus of philosophy, died on August 30, 2003. He was 86 years old. Davidson was recognized as one of the most influential philosophers of his generation.
Berkeley students have style — you just have to look closely
To the rest of the world, "UC Berkeley student" might still conjure up images of bell-bottoms and peace signs. But the times, they have a'changed. These days you're much more likely to see camouflage tank tops than tie-dyed around Sproul Plaza, and while flared jeans are back in fashion, flip-flops outnumber Birkenstocks by five to one.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community
What will Prop. 54 do?
The Racial Privacy Initiative on California’s October ballot will hamper public-health efforts, present a mixed bag for education, and reduce accountability for some crimes, according to graduate-student researchers at the Goldman School of Public Policy. But contrary to the assertions of many of its proponents, they say, it isn’t likely to produce a colorblind society.
LRDP: Crafting a guiding vision
Professor Bill Webster, vice provost for academic planning, and Ed Denton, vice chancellor for capital projects, recently sat down with the Berkeleyan to discuss the new Long Range Development Plan. Work on the plan officially launched this month and will undergo review and revisions in the coming months.
LRDP process starts with public input
If you could help shape the look, feel, and academic strength of UC Berkeley for the next 15 years, how would you do it? That, essentially, is the question before campus leaders as they begin to design a Long Range Development Plan (LRDP) that will guide the growth and development of the campus from 2005 through the year 2020.
Dr. Frank Falkner, world-renowned child growth expert, dies at 84
Dr. Frank T. Falkner, professor emeritus and former chair of maternal and child health at UC Berkeley, and an internationally recognized leader in the field of pediatric growth and development, has died at age 84. Falkner, who had prostate cancer, died in his sleep at his Berkeley home on Thursday, Aug. 21. Known by his friends and colleagues as a Renaissance Man and a consummate gentleman, Falkner left an imprint in fields as disparate as child health research and professional auto racing.
RHESSI satellite offers clues about how solar explosions act as particle accelerators
UC Berkeley's RHESSI satellite was launched in February 2002 to obtain X-ray & gamma-ray pictures of solar flares in an attempt to understand these huge explosions. It's first gamma-ray image, from July 2002, showed scientists they don't know as much as they thought they did about the production of high-energy X-rays and gamma rays from flares.
Three of a kind in the freshman class: triplets enter UC Berkeley
The Mireles triplets, two of whom are identical, arrived at UC Berkeley for the fall term. They are from the Central Valley, and they are the first in their family to attend college. They worked with their parents to find the resources to make their academic dream come true.
Public comments sought for Long Range Development Plan
The University of California, Berkeley, is drafting a new land use plan that will help shape the look, feel and academic direction of the campus for the next 15 years. The campus's current Long Range Development Plan runs through 2005 and will be replaced with a new plan that will direct UC Berkeley's growth and development from 2005 to 2020.
Professor emeritus and mechanics of collision expert Werner Goldsmith dies at 79
Werner Goldsmith, professor emeritus at the University of California, Berkeley, an international authority on the mechanics of collision, and a pioneer in the biomechanics of head and neck trauma, has died.
Balancing Earth's hydrogen budget
Scientists think they know all sources and sinks for hydrogen gas on Earth, from fossil fuel burning to soil microbes, but the numbers don't balance. Two different methods of measuring hydrogen give different answers. A new measurement of hydrogen isotopes in stratospheric air finally resolves the conflict and balances the Earth's hydrogen budget. This will help in assessing the impact of hydrogen leaking into the atmosphere if we move to a hydrogen fuel economy.
New profs take careful notes at orientation
Approximately 60 of the 80 newly hired faculty members from departments across campus attended an orientation meeting for new faculty, organized jointly by the Academic Senate and the Office of the Vice Provost for
It’s tempting to label IGS website ‘Total Recall’
There’s no shortage of things to read about the upcoming recall election, certainly. But it’s hard to find what’s truly useful among the daily torrent of hand-wringing op-eds and celebrity puff pieces. Fortunately, the librarians at the Institute of Governmental Studies (IGS) have waded through all that sludge to find the worthwhile resources that are in fact out there.
Shorter items of interest to the campus community
Shaggy doggerel, pilfered art: It’s Lunch Poems
The annual kickoff reading of Lunch Poems has become a popular Berkeley tradition.
Nanometer-sized particles change crystal structure when wet
As scientists shrink materials to a few nanometers across, they're finding that the surface plays a much larger role in the solid's physical properties. Now UC Berkeley scientists have found that molecules binding to the surface can drastically alter the internal structure. This has implications for the design of nanodevices, but also for how we interpret nanoparticles found in extraterrestrial rocks.
Anthropology professor John Ogbu dies at age 64
John Uzo Ogbu, professor of anthropology at the University of California, Berkeley, and a path-breaking scholar in the fields of minority education and identity, died of a heart attack after undergoing back surgery on Wednesday (Aug. 20).
and art in "Gene(sis)" exhibition
The San Francisco Bay Area is home to dozens of biotechnology firms delving into the cutting edge of genetic research, and it's home to artists and scholars exploring the ramifications of contemporary tinkering with Mother Nature. Starting Wednesday, Aug. 27, the University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA) will host what's considered the first art exhibition devoted to genomics that takes a comprehensive and scholarly approach.
UC Berkeley campus coming alive again for fall term
From parties and receptions to the more mundane tasks of unpacking boxes and buying books, students are settling in at UC Berkeley for the fall term. In a Back to School package, the NewsCenter takes a look at who these tens of thousands of scholars are, what they're studying, what they're paying, and other tidbits of interest.
Students urge reuse over recycling, plan giveaway of used readers and notebooks
UC Berkeley students have declared a war on waste. They are working to go beyond recycling to resource reduction and reuse. One student rides around campus on a mountain bike pulling an eight-foot trailer to haul away reusable paper and office supplies which are available for those who need them. Others give out mugs and organize back to school events to encourage reuse.
Academic-freedom policy revisited
UC faculty endorsed a new policy on academic freedom at a meeting of the systemwide Academic Assembly held at Berkeley July 30.
Nurturing the undergrad experience
The 18,300 undergraduates in the College of Letters & Science (L&S) have a dedicated advocate in newly appointed Dean Robert Holub. Appointed Undergraduate Division dean effective July 1, Holub is continuing the efforts of outgoing Dean Kwong-loi Shun while hoping to advance new initiatives as well.
Sexual-harassment training options increase
The campus is expanding its training programs this fall and making it clear that all faculty, administrators, and staff have the twin responsibilities of becoming knowledgeable about sexual harassment and understanding how to respond appropriately if such situations arise.
Despite dark financial clouds, 2003-04 school year "off to a great start," says Berdahl
With an entering class as strong as any in campus history, the 2003-04 school year is off to a good start, UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Berdahl said during his annual start of the school year press conference.
A fond adieu to one of our own
D. Lyn Hunter, a Public Affairs staff member for more than a decade, has moved up the hill to the Office of Planning and Communication at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
Smooth eTraveling ahead
Students warned of copyright issues, possible subpoenas, as file sharing enforcement increases
UC Berkeley is stepping up education and enforcement efforts regarding the uploading and downloading of music, videos and software through the Internet.
UC Berkeley expands its sexual harassment prevention and training
The University of California, Berkeley is initiating several new measures to strengthen existing sexual harassment policies and training procedures.
Berkeley publishes draft SARS response plan
The UC Berkeley SARS task force has created a prevention and response plan to help the campus – and other institutions – cope with the advent of public health threats like Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome. The plan, published in draft form on the Web, is open for public comment.
Young Musicians Program: Prodigal parade of talent onstage at Berkeley
For 36 years now, Berkeley's Young Musicians Program has provided full scholarships to exceptionally gifted, underprivileged Bay Area children.
Letter from Chancellor Berdahl to the UC Berkeley community
Chancellor Robert Berdahl takes a look back at the past year and looks ahead. On the heels of a very good year, Berdahl worries about the fragile future of public higher education.
Mark Twain Letters go online
Author Samuel Langhorne Clemens may have been only as high-tech as the typewriter, but the University of California, Berkeley's Mark Twain Project is taking him into the 21st century by electronically publishing the Mark Twain Letters.
Switch problems disrupt campus voice mail
The UC Berkeley campus is experiencing problems at the interface between SBC (Pacific Bell) and the campus voice mail system that are preventing normal voice mail operation. Computer and Network Services staff expect to have the problem repaired by 10 a.m.; in the meantime, there are workarounds to allow callers to leave and retrieve voice mail.
UC Berkeley to begin layoffs necessitated by state budget cuts
With the state budget finalized, UC Berkeley will begin implementing some employee layoffs as part of an overall strategy to meet an estimated $25.5 million cut in state funding for fiscal year 2003-04. Although executive vice chancellor and provost Paul Gray called layoffs "a last resort," he added that "the magnitude of the shortfall we face makes these actions necessary."
Professor Emeritus Kenneth Weisinger dies at age 60 after battle with cancer
Kenneth Dean Weisinger, director of the University of California, Berkeley, campus Education Abroad Program and professor emeritus of German and comparative literature, died at his San Francisco home on Monday (July 28) after battling cancer for the past year. He was 60.
Museum scientists to repeat 80-year-old Yosemite wildlife survey
Almost 90 years ago, pioneering ecologist Joseph Grinnell led a team of biologists from Berkeley's Museum of Vertebrate Zoology in a survey of the wildlife in Yosemite National Park. Now the park has asked the museum to conduct a similar survey, the first since Grinnell's original studies between 1914 and 1920.
Study finds new evidence that vitamin C helps reduce oxidative stress in passive smokers
A new study led by researchers at UC Berkeley has found that vitamin C effectively reduced levels of oxidative stress in people exposed to environmental tobacco smoke. Oxidative stress is associated with a variety of chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease and atherosclerosis. The findings provide encouraging news for people who cannot escape secondhand smoke, said the researchers.
Regional Oral History Office turns up the volume for hidden voices
Collecting oral histories is about more than sitting down with one of history's bigwigs and turning the tape recorder on. Unlike written records, oral histories give voice to the bit players and communities around significant events. The Bancroft Library's Regional Oral History Office has a mission to preserve Californians' stories, and its new director wants students to be a part of that.
Campus IT teams patching Windows security flaw
A flaw in the Microsoft Windows operating system has left UC Berkeley IT security teams scrambling to patch thousands of PCs before online vandals can compromise them. They may need to shut down some network ports temporarily to ward off the intruders.
UC Berkeley arborist launches new Tree Fund to encourage campus planting
When a dead or damaged tree is removed from campus, does anyone notice? Arborist Richard Trout does. Frustrated by a lack of funds to replace trees lost to disease or the weather, he is launching a tree fund to raise money to remedy the situation.
A breakfast of meat and eggs or nothing at all linked to extra weight, finds new study
A new study led by researchers at UC Berkeley has found that vitamin C effectively reduced levels of oxidative stress in people exposed to environmental tobacco smoke. Oxidative stress is associated with a variety of chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease and atherosclerosis. The findings provide encouraging news for people who cannot escape secondhand smoke, said the researchers.
campus closing, but UC Extension plans to continue offering S.F. classes
UC Berkeley Extension is moving forward with plans to close its Laguna Street campus in San Francisco but anticipates that popular classes will continue to be offered in that city.
Berkeley faces $25.5 million in cuts under new state budget
UC Berkeley officials said that the new state budget will require them to cut campus spending by an estimated $25.5 million, but that nothing will be done to jeopardize the campus’s tradition of academic excellence. They also said that because the campus has been diligently preparing for deep cuts for months, the final budget numbers won't require them to make major spending reductions beyond those that had already been planned.
Bancroft honored for 'Images of Native Americans' online exhibit
"Images of Native Americans," an electronic collection that includes images and text from Bancroft Library materials covering 400 years of Native American history, has won a special commendation from the American Library Association
Redwoods go high tech: Researchers use wireless sensors to study California's state tree
To study the moisture that giant redwoods absorb from fog, UC Berkeley biologist Todd Dawson and his graduate students have had to haul 30 pounds of gear some 200 feet up redwood trees in Santa Cruz and Sonoma counties. This daunting task is being made orders of magnitude easier as Dawson teams up with David Culler, professor of computer science at UC Berkeley. The researchers are in the process of installing wireless sensor nodes in redwood forests throughout northern California, starting with the Mather Redwood Grove at the UC Botanical Garden.
Students patrol hills above campus, check for fire dangers and other hazards
Ten UC Berkeley students spend their summers above the campus, working to prevent fires in the Berkeley and Oakland Hills. Called the “eyes and ears of the wildlands” these students are the first responders to emergencies. They patrol, clear brush and make sure the people who hike and run in the area are safe.
Disney internship offers Berkeley grad a path to kids' programming
After many years of creative work with children, UC Berkeley Film Studies grad Debbie Heimowitz is learning the art and business of children's television programming through a prestigious Disney Channel internship.
Berkeley, Hong Kong educators share SARS experiences and strategies
Senior public health and educational faculty from the Chinese University of Hong Kong met this week with UC Berkeley health professors and other officials this week to share their frontline experiences with Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).
New study challenges prevailing theory of microbial diversity
Genetic differentiation among plants and animals increases with geographic distance between species. But according to the dominant theory of microbial biodiversity, such evolutionary rules do not apply to the tiny world of microorganisms. Researchers at UC Berkeley and the University of Cincinnati are now challenging that theory with a new study that finds significant genetic differences among a species of microbe sampled from around the world.
Regents vote, reluctantly, to boost student fees
Last week’s action taken as part of overall plan to cope with state budget crisis
Picking up the pieces
Getting back to business after a natural disaster will be crucial to both the university and its community, so good preparation is a must.
Regents adopt landmark green-building policy, clean-energy standard
The UC Board of Regents on July 17 approved a universitywide policy for the design of “green” buildings and a standard for the use of “clean” energy.
COrE: Partnering for change
The Center for Organizational Effectiveness works with senior staff to improve processes affecting the entire campus. One desired outcome is less time spent managing crises.
Biotechnology is one key to feeding the world, says Nobelist Norman Borlaug
Nobel Laureate Norman E. Borlaug participants of the Beahrs Environmental Leadership Program during a three-day visit to the Berkeley campus.
Physicists build world's smallest motor using nanotubes and etched silicon
Only 15 years after University of California, Berkeley, engineers built the first micro-scale motor, a UC Berkeley physicist has created the first nano-scale motor - a gold rotor on a nanotube shaft that could ride on the back of a virus.
Researchers help define what makes a political conservative
After studying 50 years of research literature about the psychology of conservatism, four researchers report that at the core of political conservatism is the resistance to change and a tolerance for inequality. Their work was recently published in the American Psychological Association's Psychological Bulletin.
RHESSI satellite finds tiny microflares on sun are smaller versions of normal flares; could heat corona
Solar flares are the biggest explosions in the solar system and get the most attention, but microflares a million times smaller play perhaps as great a role in heating the atmosphere of the sun. The RHESSI satellite is imaging these microflares for the first time and discovering that they are just like their larger cousins, but much more numerous.
Stars rich in heavy metals tend to harbor planets, astronomers report
What disposes some stars to develop planets and others not? Debra Fischer of UC Berkeley and Jeff Valenti of STScI have done a thorough analysis of 61 stars with planets and 693 without planets, and found that the deciding factor is the amount of heavy elements such as iron in the star. Metal-rich stars have a 20 percent chance of forming planets.
UC Berkeley students enrolling in Arabic classes in record numbers
Since 9/11/2001, UC Berkeley has seen a continuous rise in the number of students studying Arabic. This summer, 60 are enrolled, a record for summer session. Many students hope it will lead to a career in the CIA or the diplomatic corps, but others are studying because they fell in love with the culture through its music.
Point of View: How does the state budget crisis affect you as a student?
Six students share their worries about fee increases, declining resources for public education, and other effects of the crisis.
Hydrogen-fueled cars not the best way to cut pollution, greenhouse gases and oil dependency, says expert
From President George Bush on down, politicians have been pushing research on clean-burning hydrogen. But how does a multi-billion-dollar research program to develop hydrogen-powered fuel cells and the distribution network to operate hydrogen-fueled cars compare with other strategies for reducing pollution, greenhouse gases and oil dependency? Not favorably, says UC Berkeley energy expert Alex Farrell.
Berkeley campus lifts SARS-related enrollment, travel limits
With the risk of SARS greatly reduced and worldwide travel restrictions eased, the UC Berkeley campus has been able to remove all SARS-related summer travel and enrollment restrictions
Demography study: Caring for the next generation will keep you living longer.
How a species cares for the next generation is sometimes a more powerful determinant of lifespan than fertility, according to a paper published by UC Berkeley demography professor Ronald Lee. Mortality and deterioration with age are shaped by the amount of future investing that an average organism would do.
UC Berkeley students rely on sunshine to get their kicks on Route 66
On July 13, around 30 strange-looking vehicles pulled onto Route 66, the famous highway that winds from Chicago to Los Angeles. Rolling along like UFOs on wheels, these vehicles won't stop for gas even once in a 10-day, 2,300-mile race - they're solar. For some, this day in the sun has been a long time coming: UC Berkeley's CalSol student group has been working on its entry, Solar Bear, for four years.
Biotechnology is one key to feeding the world, says Nobel Laureate Norman Borlaug
Biotechnology, chemical fertilizers, and policy changes will be key to feeding the world's increasing population and protecting the environment, according to Nobel Laureate and World Food Prize founder Norman E. Borlaug.
NIH funds powerful magnet for protein studies
UC Berkeley scientists seeking ever more powerful tools to detail the 3-D structure of proteins and other biological molecules will soon have at their disposal the best tool available. NIH has awarded nearly $6 million to purchase and push the research limits of a new-generation NMR machine.
C. Judson King returning to Berkeley to head Center for Studies in Higher Education
C. Judson King is coming home to UC Berkeley, where he spent more than three decades filling several critical roles on campus. King, who moved to the UC systemwide office in 1994, will return this fall to lead UC Berkeley’s Center for Studies in Higher Education.
Mike Koll, California Alumni Association leader and summer camp founder, dies at age 86
Michael J. "Mike" Koll, former executive director of the California Alumni Association, died in Berkeley July 1 after a long illness.
Experts from around the world convene to discuss war, poverty and the environment
Forty environmentalists around the world, including a Pakistani who has worked with Afghan refugees, have gathered at UC Berkeley for the third annual Beahrs Environmental Leadership Program. During their three-week stay, they will discuss issues in ecosystem management, pollution control, agricultural biotechnology and climate change, as well as effective leadership and conflict resolution skills. They will also hear from Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Norman Borlaug in a lecture on campus on July 10. Borlaug, known as the father of the Green Revolution, will discuss agricultural development and the environment.
Representative Ellen Tauscher says she "will not sit idly by and be duped" by Bush administration again
On campus to receive a science award, Congresswoman Ellen Tauscher (D-Walnut Creek) launched a political grenade aimed at the Bush administration. Tauscher, who voted for the congressional resolution to use force in Iraq, said she was deeply disillusioned with the intelligence that the Bush administration gave to members of the House and Senate before the vote to use force. "I believe that this administration cooked the books on the intelligence that caused us to believe that Iraq was an imminent threat," she said at a UC Berkeley reception Tuesday, July 1. "And that is deeply troubling to me."
Journalism School's Michael Pollan has a beef with McDonald's antibiotics announcement
Recently the fast-food titan McDonald's announced it would ask its meat suppliers to stop using antibiotics to promote growth, and to cut back on antibiotics used in animals for other purposes. The unregulated, widespread use of antibiotics in livestock has greatly reduced their effectiveness in humans. The McDonald's move was hailed by consumer, environmental, and animal-health advocates alike as a step toward healthier meat production. But Michael Pollan, the John S. and James L. Knight Chair in Journalism at UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism, is less optimistic. A renowned science journalist, Pollan has written extensively about factory farming and the meat industry.
"Sneaky Pete Alley" comes alive in student opera production
P. J. MacAlpine, a recent University of California, Berkeley, graduate is back on campus this summer, taking theater classes to prepare her to be the assistant director and choreographer for "Sneaky Pete Alley," an opera that she's written with help from her 14-year-old son. The production will debut this fall at the Experimental Group Young People's Theatre (EGYPT) in Oakland.
Point of View: It's summer! What are you doing here?!
A highly unscientific survey conducted on campus reveals that UC Berkeley students believe in spending their summers getting ahead, rather than getting a tan.
UC Berkeley-led team to explore the elements needed to support Martian life
The NASA Astrobiology Institute has chosen UC Berkeley as one of 12 institutions that will receive funding to study the origin, evolution and future of life in the universe. The institute is awarding the UC Berkeley team $1.23 million for the first year of a 5-year grant to study the biosphere of Mars, both ancient and recent.
Study links extreme weather, poverty and witch killings
Edward "Ted" Miguel, an assistant professor of economics at the University of California, Berkeley, didn't set out to study witch killings. Interested in the political economy of development in Third World countries, he originally traveled to Tanzania to do a study funded by the National Science Foundation of how villagers raise money for local public goods and infrastructure such as roads, electricity, schools and water systems. Then, while crafting a database for his research, Miguel went on the Internet to search for more background about the extremely poor Tanzanian district of Meatu. "Only one thing came up on Google for Meatu - witch killings," Miguel said.
Joseph A. Pask, professor emeritus and a ceramic engineering pioneer, dies at 90
Professor emeritus Joseph Adam Pask, who died June 14 at the age of 90, helped pioneer the transition of the study of ceramics into the field of modern ceramic science and engineering. Over the course of his three-decade career at UC Berkeley, he helped increase international recognition for the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and, in particular, the program in ceramic engineering. His colleagues remember him as an ambassador in the ceramic community, forging strong ties with researchers in the United States and in Japan.
Berkeley researchers help Internet evolve with launch of PlanetLab test-bed
UC Berkeley researchers have joined with scientists from Intel, Hewlett-Packard and more than 60 universities around the world in a project, called PlanetLab, to create a scalable test-bed on which Internet services operate on multiple computers simultaneously. Such a system, considered the next stage in the evolution of the Internet, could lead to significantly faster downloads and more secure storage systems.
Chancellor's statement on Supreme Court's affirmative action decisions
In a comment on the U.S. Supreme Court's June 23 ruling in two affirmative action cases from the University of Michigan, UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl applauded the justices' recognition "that a university has a compelling interest in diversity and that, to achieve it, it is permissible to consider race as a factor in admissions."
Researchers develop technique that could open doors to faster nanotech commercialization
UC Berkeley researchers have found a way to localize the extreme heat necessary for nanowire and nanotube growth, enabling them to synthesize the nanomaterials directly onto microstructures without damaging the sensitive microelectronics just one-tenth of a human hair strand away. The new technique, described in the journal Applied Physics Letters, opens the door to cheaper and faster commercialization of numerous nanotechnology devices.
Study looks at top minority student college applications
Banning race-based preferences at public universities in California and Texas has not deterred very highly qualified minority students from applying to the top public schools in those two states, according to a new study.
back the hands of time
As the last step in a months-long refurbishing of UC Berkeley's Sather Tower (the Campanile), the campus icon's clocks are getting a long-overdue overhaul, both inside and out. Take a virtual leap over the ledge of the 307-foot landmark to see just how such a towering job gets done.
Researchers warn that AIDS in India could become as dire as in Africa
The toll of the HIV/AIDS epidemic could be just as heavy in India as it is in Africa, researchers say. In a paper published in this week's British Medical Journal, the researchers say that preventive action must be taken now to stem the spread of HIV in India before history repeats itself.
UC Berkeley theater major Autumn Zangrilli to audition for Miss California
On Wednesday, June 25, UC Berkeley theater/performance studies major Autumn Zangrilli will be in Fresno trying out for her most difficult role yet: Miss California. The part comes with a hefty paycheck — $10,000 in scholarship money. Zangrilli, Miss Contra Costa County 2003, is on her own financially, and has put herself through her first four years at UC Berkeley with a combination of scholarships and part-time work. Now that she's decided to continue her studies for a fifth year, she's on the hunt for a way to pay for it.
Professor Ned Johnson, a renowned ornithologist who specialized in Western North American birds, dies at age 70
Ned Keith Johnson, an ornithologist, professor and museum curator who died at age 70 last week, got hooked on birds at age 7 and became a widely-respected expert on the variation, speciation and evolution of birds in Western North America. He was to retire from campus later this month after a 43-year career.
Study finds unequal preschool access across Los Angeles County
Rapidly growing, working-class communities in Los Angeles display severe shortages of preschool programs, constraining children's early school performance, according to a new study released today (Wednesday, June 18) by researchers at an institute based at the University of California, Berkeley, and Stanford University. Blue-collar Latino families are hit hardest, with just six or fewer preschool slots operating for every 100 children under five years of age in cities such as Baldwin Park, El Monte and Montebello.
Can money buy happiness? UC Berkeley researchers find surprising answers
In a capitalistic society, people generally believe that being rich is better. But two UC Berkeley researchers have found that isn't always the case, especially if you value your work because it's fulfilling and not because it offers a high income.
Theatre Rhinoceros treasures at Bancroft
The University of California, Berkeley's Bancroft Library is processing an eclectic assortment of materials documenting a quarter-century of San Francisco's hugely successful Theatre Rhinoceros -- said to be the world's longest running lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender theater company.
Regents go 'back to school' on Berkeley campus tour
In their first visit to Berkeley since 1999, the Regents of the University of California spent a full day Thursday (6/12) touring the campus, in what amounted to an intensive mobile seminar on Berkeley’s recent accomplishments and near-term challenges.
UC Berkeley student Vik Pineda shines a personal spotlight on treatment of disabled people
Victor "Vik" Pineda, a UC Berkeley student in the city and regional planning master's program, is changing the way the world views people with disabilities. Pineda has spinal muscular atrophy, a form of muscular dystrophy, and as a Cal undergrad was elected an ASUC senator, completed a double major, and made an award-winning documentary short film about life in Cuba for the disabled.
SETI@home users get to look again at candidate signals from ET
Three months ago, SETI@home scientists tuned the Arecibo radio telescope to 216 cosmic radio sources that had been identified by users of the screensaver as candidate signals from extraterrestrial civilizations. Now SETI@home subscribers can help reanalyze the most promising signals.
How great was Alexander?
Alexander the Great may not have been so great after all. A University of California, Berkeley-led group of researchers is challenging the common history that credits the Macedonian king with initiating the spread of ancient Greek culture throughout the Middle East during his conquest of the region during the 4th century B.C. Backed by a nearly $234,000 collaborative research grant from the Getty Foundation, the team over the next two years will try to document a thriving Hellenized culture in the city of Dor, Israel, at least 100 years before Alexander marched in.
Aggressive response lowers SARS mortality rate
Death rates from SARS have varied widely from country to country, suggesting to some that there are different strains of the virus that differ in virulence. A new report by UC Berkeley epidemiologists suggests that the differing death rates from SARS are a product of how quickly a country's health care apparatus gears up to deal with the disease, not a result of different strains.
Unofficial 2003 summer reading list includes unusual picks about war and peace
It doesn't include "Red Badge of Courage" or "All Quiet on the Western Front," but this year's unofficial Summer Reading List from the University of California, Berkeley, suggests 13 books on the timely topic of war and peace. The books were selected by UC Berkeley faculty and staff members for freshmen who will attend UC Berkeley in the fall.
160,000-year-old fossilized skulls uncovered in Ethiopia are oldest anatomically modern humans
The fossilized skulls of two adults and one child discovered in Ethiopia date back 160,000 years, making them the oldest known fossils of modern humans, or Homo sapiens. With these new crania, we can now see what our direct ancestors looked like. These anatomically modern humans pre-date most neanderthals, and therefore could not have descended from them.
UC Berkeley engineering students race to build robots for their 15 minutes of fame
Building a robot, even a simple one, is no small task. Some UC Berkeley engineering classes spend an entire semester doing just that. Now imagine that you are in an eight-hour competition to build one that can, say, quickly collect toys and put them in a box. Sound hard? Not for Berkeley engineering students Eric Park, Bharathwaj "Bart" Muthuswamy, and Daniel Lehrbaum, who beat a University of Tennessee team on the Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Network show "Robot Rivals."
Researchers create potential toxic sensor chip by combining electronics with living cell
Researchers have found a way to tap into the telltale electrical signals that mark cell death, opening the door to the creation of a "canary on a chip" that can be used to sound the alarm of a biochemical attack or test drug toxicity on human tissue.
Close communication helps twins live longer
Twins are known to live longer than average, but among twins, identical twins live about two years longer, on average, than fraternal twins. The reason for this slight different has been elusive, but now a UC Berkeley researcher have found one possible reason: the extremely close communication among co-twins.
Words of wisdom
In commencement ceremonies around campus, luminaries offered words of reflection and encouragement to new Cal graduates, their friends, and families. Here is a sampling of what they had to say.
Forces that shape the bay
A new outdoor park at the Lawrence Hall of Science opens on June 21.
honored for 'keeping it light'
Thirty-seven supervisors and managers from departments across campus were recently honored with Berkeley Staff Assembly “Excellence in Management” awards.
Continuation of CDOP funding approved
The Career Development Opportunity Program (CDOP) will continue for at least another year and a half, allowing staff to request funds for training that will broaden their skills and enhance their UC careers.
Summerfest spells relief, recreation for UC Berkeley staff
Open-air massages, games on the Glade, food and freebies and tunes to enjoy while taking a break from the daily grind – it was Summerfest time again on the Berkeley campus.
Bolder (if not bigger) than Blockbuster
Gary Handman isn’t absolutely sure, but he believes that the campus Media Resources Center may house the largest single collection of documentary films in the United States.
New AVC’s focus is campus/industry cooperation
A new campus Office of University/Industry Liaison has been created, headed by a freshly minted assistant vice chancellor, Alexander (Allen) Krantz
UC Berkeley composer Jorge Liderman wins Guggenheim award
Jorge Liderman, a composer and professor of music at the University of California, Berkeley, is a winner of the 2003 Guggenheim Latin American and Caribbean Fellowship Awards. The 45-year-old Buenos Aires native who has been playing and writing music since he was a child, said his fellowship plans call for still more compositions --- including an opera about Sor Juana, a feminist nun in Mexico in the 1600s.
Online-giving site dials up donor outreach
A newly revamped website has been launched to make it easier to donate to the university online.
New law aids computer security
Recent honors awarded on the Berkeley campus
Cal’s ‘unofficial’ summer reading list
The campus’s popular annual “unofficial” compendium of recommended titles (both fiction and nonfiction) for incoming freshmen.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community
Producing ethanol from corn drains resources, says new report by UC Berkeley researchers
Ethanol is not the environmentally friendly gas additive many think it is, according to a new paper released today (Thursday, June 5) by researchers at UC Berkeley. After factoring in the amount of energy it takes to grow corn and convert it into ethanol, there is a net energy loss of 65 percent.
Researchers create wireless sensor chip the size of glitter
Engineers have reached a new milestone along the road to creating dust-sized wireless sensor motes. They have integrated radio frequency communication and custom circuits onto a 5 square millimeter chip that runs the TinyOS operating system. Researchers hope to have a pill-sized sensor mote available commercially sometime in 2004.
Researchers help bring clean water to households in developing nations
In many regions in developing nations, households fail to get a consistent supply of clean water. Engineers at UC Berkeley have come up a possible solution by creating a UV disinfection system made with locally available parts. Several households in Mexico will soon try the system out in a pilot project starting this summer.
Cheap, simple microbial factories for antimalarial drug
A highly touted antimalarial drug, artemisinin, can be made cheaper and simpler by genetically engineered microbes, according to chemical engineer Jay Keasling. He and his lab colleagues stuck 10 genes into bacterial cells to create a chemical factory that generated precursors of the drug.
Student Summer Journal: Dispatches from the Field
Berkeley students on "summer vacation" report in from Angola on the impact of the oil industry; from Rwanda on the search for justice and reconciliation; from Paris on the U.S. Embassy role; from India on family planning; and from Borneo on the rattan industry.
Beats go on in the archives of UC Berkeley's Bancroft Library
The University of California, Berkeley's Bancroft Library - already home to the archives of some of the most noted poets of the Beat era --- has acquired journals of prolific poet, essayist and playwright Michael McClure that date back to the Beat's West Coast birth in the 1950s."He was in at the beginning," said Anthony Bliss, curator of rare books and manuscripts at The Bancroft Library. "This adds considerably to our collection of San Francisco's literary and cultural scene. It's really major."
Gov. Davis to help break ground on new bioscience, bioengineering research building
The University of California, Berkeley, is breaking ground today (Friday, May 30) for its largest research building, the Stanley Biosciences and Bioengineering Facility, designed to be the hub of biomedical and bioengineering research and teaching on campus.
3-D map of local interstellar space shows sun lies in middle of hole piercing galactic plane
The first detailed map of interstellar space within about 1,000 light years of Earth places the solar system in the middle of a giant hole that pierces the galaxy, perhaps blown out by an exploding star one or two million years ago.
RHESSI uncovers secret to cataclysmic explosions known as gamma-ray bursts
A chance observation by UC Berkeley's RHESSI satellite has uncovered one of the secrets of gamma-ray bursts, the most powerful explosions in the universe.
State budget crunch prompts fee hike for summer classes
University of California students enrolling in summer classes at Berkeley will face a fee increase, a necessary step to help address cuts in state funding, campus officials announced Friday.
Five spacecraft join to solve auroral puzzle
A remarkable set of observations by five spacecraft orbiting the Earth has led to a breakthrough in understanding the origin of a peculiar and puzzling type of aurora.
Professor backs "survival schools" for Native American languages
Native American language “survival schools” must have long-term funding to save these languages from extinction, UC Berkeley professor Leanne Hinton recently told the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs.
PACE survey finds most Americans prefer smaller federal tax cut, more school and state aid
A clear majority of Americans, worried over deepening cuts in school budgets, now prefers a smaller federal tax cut blended with education aid for the states, according to a new survey by independent researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and Stanford University. Polling earlier this month revealed a public divided between President Bush's desire to cut taxes further rather than reducing the federal deficit. The new PACE study is the first to focus on how Americans are weighing the Bush proposal against growing worries over shrinking education budgets.
UC Berkeley announces new lifelong learning institute
A new Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UC Berkeley will offer classes next fall to adults 50 and older taught by retired faculty members but free of homework or exams. The first courses will include one on the American soul and another about new approaches to disease prevention.
Center's support helps student / mom / entrepreneur make the grade
It took Sarah Bonet half her life to graduate from UC Berkeley. On May 23 – 16 years, 2 kids and several careers after she began – Bonet will receive her undergraduate degree in anthropology, thanks in part to the Centers for Transfer, Re-Entry and Student Parents.
No job, no home, no limit: Re-entry grad's persistence achieves his dream
Duane Dewitt came to Cal homeless; he's graduating with honors, a spot in graduate school and a speech to his fellow students letting them know that it's never too late to reach your goals.
Study finds new clues to the fate of smog in Sierra Nevada forests
Smog ozone goes into the forest, but it doesn't come out. Not in the same form, anyway. Researchers at UC Berkeley now think they know what happens to the smog as it reaches pine forests in the Sierra Nevada.
Senior Anosheh Afghahi says her real education took place in the lab, homeless shelter, and sick children's ward
Anosheh Afghahi, one of three runners-up for the 2003 University Medal, UC Berkeley's highest honor, sincerely believes there is nothing that distinguishes her from her peers. This senior's unusual background (her parents are Iranian, but she grew up in Sweden), her hematology research, and the hours she has spent volunteering at Children's Hospital and a local homeless shelter are really no big deal, she says. "There are hundreds of Berkeley students who dedicate their time to help others — and probably spend more time and are more dedicated than me," she argues. "I don't feel like I should be singled out."
Leonard Michaels, acclaimed writer and former professor, dies at age 70
Leonard Michaels, a former professor of English literature at the University of California, Berkeley and an acclaimed author, has died from complications of lymphoma at the age of 70.
Class of 2003 shouldn't give up in the face of a tough job market, say Career Center advisers
When this year's graduating students file out of UC Berkeley's Greek Theater in their caps and gowns on Thursday, they will be walking into a job market radically different from the one they started school in. Career Center counselors urge those Cal students who haven't yet found jobs not to despair, but to understand that today's job market will likely require a carefully plotted, two- to six-month hunt — one that also covers informational interviews, follow-up phone calls, internships, and nontraditional employment.
Believing in yourself may offer hidden powers, says Sara Davis-Eisenman — and she's living proof
For years Sara Davis-Eisenman thought higher education would never be part of her future. For Davis-Eisenman, who grew up with parents plagued by mental illness and poverty, the journey represents a triumph of mind over matter. Not only did Davis-Eisenman graduate in December 2002 from UC Berkeley with high honors in cognitive science and Phi Beta Kappa, but she also very nearly won the University Medal, the top accolade for a graduating senior.
Berkeley will honor five graduates at May 15 Commencement Convocation
Five University of California, Berkeley, students will be honored with Mather Good Citizen Awards and Kenneth Priestly Awards at the campus's 2003 Commencement Convocation on Thursday, May 15. The event will honor the estimated 10,000 students who became eligible during the school year for undergraduate and graduate degrees at UC Berkeley.
Chemical in Broccoli Blocks Growth of Prostate Cancer Cells, New Study Shows
There may be yet another reason to eat your veggies. Researchers at UC Berkeley say a chemical found in broccoli can stunt the growth of human prostate cancer cells. The chemical, called DIM, acts as an anti-androgen, and could potentially lead to drugs that prevent or treat cancer.
UC Berkeley lifts some limits it had placed on summer attendance by students from SARS-affected areas
The University of California, Berkeley, will allow an estimated 80 foreign students from areas with significant SARS outbreaks to attend summer classes, a lifting of some limits it recently placed on summer enrollment, Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl said Saturday.
Text of Chancellor Robert Berdahl's May 10 announcement modifying campus SARS policy for international summer school students
At a May 10 press conference, UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl announced modifications to the campus's SARS policy for international summer school students.
Overcoming his own mind, senior Kenny Kamrin trades sleep for service
Kenny Kamrin has many talents. A runner-up for the 2003 University Medal, UC Berkeley's highest student honor, this senior can juggle flaming torches, hypnotize people, do backflips, Tae Kwon Do, and make math seem simple for athletes. But there was one significant thing Kamrin once couldn't do, and that's control his own mind. Three years ago, he struggled with the onset of a severe form of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Thankfully, he found a salve that keeps the demons at bay: helping others.
Leon Panetta to speak at 2003 Commencement Convocation
Leon Panetta, former White House chief of staff and U.S. congressman from California, will speak about "the challenge of being the greatest generation" at the University of California, Berkeley's 2003 Commencement Convocation on Thursday, May 15. The 4 p.m. event at the Greek Theatre will honor the estimated 10,000 students who became eligible during the school year for undergraduate and graduate degrees at UC Berkeley.
Commencement 2003: Full Coverage
Convocation coverage includes a slide show, webcasts and articles on the key speakers, advice to incoming students from the grads, and stories on Berkeley's top graduating students.
Graduates ‘sent up mighty cheer’ for T.R.
A century ago the Berkeley campus was brimming with an expanded enrollment, new academic programs, and plans for new buildings and benefactions. In the midst of this enthusiastic era, President Theodore Roosevelt dropped in to deliver the 1903 commencement address at the new Greek Theatre.
Let the speechifying commence!
Graduates to hear from government officials, screenwriters, high-tech execs, labor organizers — and, of course, academics — in a whirl of ceremonies
Post-9/11 laws source of campus delays, unease
Concern grows that PATRIOT Act, meant to bolster national security, may threaten academic freedom, civil liberties.
Fifteen of Dale McCullough’s close-up wildlife portraits from Japan, Africa, and Australia are now on display in Mulford Hall.
Kudos for community servants in our midst
Stan Weisner, Gibor Basri, Dave Farrell, Richard White, Donald Dahlstein, and State Sen. John Vasconcellos all received Chancellor's Community Service Awards.
Berkeley explains reasons behind SARS policy changes
UC Berkeley officials explain the reasoning and official advice that led them to restrict summer school enrollment by students from SARS-affected countries.
of Arts and Sciences elects 13 from UC Berkeley
Thirteen University of California, Berkeley, scholars were elected fellows of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences today (Tuesday, May 6), bringing the campus total to 228.
Clay cuneiform tablets from ancient Mesopotamia to be placed online
As authorities continue to ponder the recent theft in the Middle East of ancient Iraqi antiquities, a University of California, Berkeley, team is scanning a collection of fragile, ancient Mesopotamian cuneiform tablets to share with the world via the Internet.
Report of physics department decline exaggerated
A May 2 story in the San Francisco Chronicle may have left the impression that UC Berkeley's physics department has fallen from the top ranks. Not so, wrote Chancellor Robert Berdahl and Dean of the Physical Sciences Mark Richards in a letter to the Chronicle editor. The department "remains among the top five in the nation and is the premier department at any public university in the country."
Awareness of racial stereotypes happens at an early age, has consequences
Most people believe that children are insulated from the prejudice and stereotyping that too often characterize adult life. But according to two University of California, Berkeley, researchers, even elementary school-aged children are aware of and affected by others' stereotypes. "The Development and Consequences of Stereotype-Consciousness in Middle Childhood," an article by UC Berkeley psychology faculty members Clark McKown and Rhona Weinstein that appears in the most recent issue of the journal Child Development, examines exactly when children become aware enough of others' stereotypes to be harmed by them.
'Great Debate' vs. Stanford takes on timely topic: Pre-emptive force
There's no axe at stake, no goalposts will be toppled, but intellectual bragging rights are very much on the line this Wednesday (May 7) when UC Berkeley's debate team takes on traditional rival Stanford at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco.
Heeding CDC advisories on SARS, UC Berkeley revises travel, visitor policies
In a joint interview, Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl and Tomas Aragon, director of the UC Berkeley Center for Infectious Disease Preparedness, explain the recent revision of campus travel and visitor policies stemming from CDC advisories against travel to several SARS-stricken Asian countries. Under the new policies, campus-funded travel to SARS-affected regions is essentially banned, and summer school students from those countries will not be accepted.
Innovative engineering and business graduate Ankur Luthra named University Medalist
Ankur Luthra ends an impressive tenure at UC Berkeley with a University Medal, bachelor's degrees in electrical engineering and computer sciences and a 4.0 GPA. He will receive the University Medal, bestowed upon the top graduating senior, at the Commencement Convocation on May 15.
Law students draft Internet privacy bill
Students in a UC Berkeley School of Law legal clinic have drafted a state Assembly bill that seeks to strengthen legal protections and privacy rights for individuals who anonymously express their thoughts on the Internet. Currently, companies or individuals that feel damaged by an anonymous online comment can track down the identity of the Web users with little or no notice to the Web user that they are doing so. The Assembly judiciary committee has been scheduled to hear the matter on Tuesday, May 6.
Center for Peace and Well-being marks first anniversary with symposium on equality
The University of California, Berkeley's Center for the Development of Peace and Well-being will mark its first anniversary next week with a two-day symposium about how inequality in income, education and social standing affect many aspects of people's lives. "Equality, Hierarchy and Social Class: Across Species, in the Classroom and in Health" will begin Friday, May 9, at 3:30 p.m. and continue all day Saturday at the UC Berkeley Clark Kerr Campus, 2601 Warring Street.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley community.
A month of musical memories
May will mark an end, several beginnings, and an anniversary for Berkeley’s music department.
A most unconventional convention
A three-day convention of California College Republicans was held in Berkeley last week.
A decade of reading, writing, and helping
For 10 years, CALS Project tutors have worked with staffers to improve their basic skills.
Bush’s worldview ‘leaves war inevitable,’ Kucinich says
Democratic presidential contender Dennis Kucinich spoke on campus last week
Let’s do (art at) lunch
Campus budgeteers, joined by an occasional visitor, unleash artistic impulses at a biweekly get-together.
Logging debate is ‘bogus,’ nation’s chief forester declares
Familiar issues like timber harvesting, road building, livestock grazing are ‘diversions’ compared with other threats
There’s no monopoly on Mideast emotion
Student group to host I-House event devoted to ‘compassionate listening’
Zero tolerance for intolerance
Students and administrators band together to stem recent spate of bias-related events
Making academia more family-friendly
Faculty straddling the demands of work and family are losing out in a variety of ways. A campus research team is developing a UC policy package to change that picture.
New National Academy members elected today
Three University of California, Berkeley, faculty members, including the campus's most recent Nobel Laureate, were elected today (Tuesday, April 29) to the National Academy of Sciences.
Lifting the fog of war: Human Rights Center Director Eric Stover reports on chaos and lawlessness in Iraq
While hundreds of journalists traveled with U.S.-led coalition troops, there were only two human-rights investigators in all of Iraq during the war. And as the journalists bombarded the world with reports filed seemingly every 30 seconds about ambushes and heroic rescues, these two researchers focused on one issue for days at a time, interviewing multiple people to make sure they had an accurate picture. "It's very easy to write about the bang-bang of war," says veteran human-rights researcher Eric Stover, one of the two investigators in Iraq. "It’s much harder to find out what's actually happening on the ground and analyze it."
Sen. Vasconcellos Honored with UC Berkeley Chancellor's Community Service
State Sen. John Vasconcellos, who authored legislation that encouraged the creation of community service programs on California university and college campuses, will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award Thursday, May 1, at a ceremony honoring this year's student, faculty and staff Chancellor's Community Service Award winners from the University of California, Berkeley.
Microgel beads fool immune system, show promise as new method of vaccination, gene therapy
Most vaccines today are disabled viruses that prime the immune system to fight off infection. A UC Berkeley chemist has come up with a novel alternative - a microgel polymer bead that can ferry viral antigens into immune cells to activate disease-fighting T cells. A first test in culture shows it works.
Berkeley honors three professors with Distinguished Teaching Award
Martha Olney, adjunct professor of Economics, Glynda Hull, professor in the Graduate School of Education's Language and Literacy, Society and Culture program, and Jeffrey Reimer, professor of chemical engineering, have been named distinguished teachers.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley campus community
This Portnoy has no complaints
Infectious-disease investigator Daniel Portnoy is happy to be at Berkeley, contributing to the work of the campus Health Sciences Initiative.
Why do people turn out the way they do?
Institute of Human Development and its Child Study Center celebrate 75 years.
SISC making progress on new job structure
The Staff Infrastructure Steering Committee — as part of its ongoing efforts to revamp the campus’s 50-year-old job-classification and compensation system — recently unveiled a proposed structure that organizes the work people do at Berkeley within a new series of job families, subfamilies, categories, and levels.
Staying fit and healthy after 50 ... or 60 ... or 70 ... or 80 ... or...
April 26 health fair and CalFIT classes, promote vibrant aging among the campus’s most senior community members
Forest health, not timber and roads, is the key issue, nation's chief forester says
Commercial logging and associated road construction are not the primary issues in today’s national forests, the nation’s chief forester told a packed hall at a UC Berkeley Earth Day lecture. USDA Forest Service chief Dale N. Bosworth said forest management should focus instead on improving forest health by reducing the risk of forest fires and slowing the spread of invasive species.
College of Environmental Design sponsors mountain hut design contest
North Americans trekking into the wilderness typically favor the tent for shelter, while much of the rest of the world leans toward the large, communal mountain hut. The first method is thought to contribute to environmental degradation; the second uses 19th century models that need more advanced technology and a focus on environmental preservation. The solution? A new contest sponsored by the University of California, Berkeley's College of Environmental Design aims to find out through an international search for a prototype design for a 60- to 80-person wilderness base camp for overnight stays high in California's Sierra Nevada.
Assessing George W. Bush: From a "caretaker president" to a "revolutionary" of "missionary zeal"
"Bush at War: The 22nd Annual Review of the Presidency," part of a series sponsored by UC Berkeley's Center on Politics at the Institute of Governmental Studies and UC Extension, took place Monday night, April 28, before a packed lecture hall. The three panelists headlining an assessment of the 43rd U.S. President may have differed on the details, but overall they agreed that George W. Bush is floating high on a wave of wartime patriotism — one that might easily carry him to victory in the 2004 Presidential Elections.
"Rotten Trade" conference examines global organs trafficking
The global trafficking of human bodies and body parts will be the focus of a Rotten Trade conference on Thursday, April 24, at the University of California, Berkeley. Scholars, bioethicists, human rights activists and transplant surgeons will participate in the event, which is free and open to the public. The previous day (Wednesday, April 23), Nancy Scheper-Hughes, a UC Berkeley medical anthropologist and founder of Organs Watch, a UC Berkeley-based medical human rights organization, will give a 5 p.m. talk, "Beyond Bio-Ethics: Global Justice and the Traffic in Organs," at Wheeler Hall Auditorium. The lecture is one of UC Berkeley's two prestigious Faculty Research Lectures being given in 2003.
The accidental activist: Freshman Imran Farooq brings an eye for business to new environmental group
Freshman Imran Farooq isn't your typical environmental activist, and that's OK with him. This intended business major has already founded his second environmental group, the Organization for Maintaining Natural Interests. (The first one was in high school and raised $58,000 for a research trip to the Galapagos Islands.) With OMNI, he hopes to inspire fellow non-science students to take an interest in protecting the environment.
Professor Awarded Guggenheim Fellowship
Michael Watts, a UC Berkeley professor who is researching the relationship between oil, politics and violence in West African, has been named a 2003 Guggenheim fellow. The award is based on distinguished achievement and exceptional promise for future accomplishments.
UC Berkeley professors deliver eulogy for lost treasures of Iraq
Before a standing-room-only crowd at UC Berkeley’s Archaeological Research Facility on April 16, three professors of Near Eastern Studies lamented the recent staggering losses to the cultural heritage of the region known as the birthplace of civilization. Although archaeologists around the world urged the U.S. Defense Department to protect Iraq’s cultural heritage, "indifference appears to have prevailed," said Near Eastern professor David Stronach.
Cal's varsity rugby team smashes records — and stereotypes
Cal has had few rivals on the rugby field for years. The Bears have won a record-setting 19 of 23 championships since the National Collegiate Rugby Tournament began in 1980, including emerging from the scrum as national champs for the last 12 years in a row. Over the past 40 years, no college team in any sport has been more dominant.
Continental roots go deep, but not as deep as some people thought
Earth is the only known planet with an active surface, where the rigid lithosphere floats atop a hot and slowly convecting mantle. How deep do the roots of the lithosphere go? Seismologists have differed, but a new study by UC Berkeley scientists clears up the confusion and pegs the thickness at 125-160 miles.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley community from the Berkeleyan
One more attempt to clear his name
World War II veteran and former Nazi hunter Michel Thomas defended his life, denouncing as “lies” a newspaper article he said had defamed him, at a mock trial at Boalt Hall earlier this month.
Haas Awards are a Cal Day highlight
Two Berkeley alumni were honored on Cal Day with the prestigious Haas Awards.
Berkeley Nobelists’ flags fly high
Campus Nobel laureates are honored with dozens of street banners
Spotlight on SARS
Information update on SARS
A campus crawling with kids
Berkeley faculty and staff can bring their young sons, daughters, relatives, or neighborhood pals to campus for “Take Our Children to Work Day,” Thursday, April 24.
Paul Kos Retrospective at BAM
A retrospective of conceptual artist Paul Kos at BAM through July 20.
Imagining the future
State Senator John Vasconcellos convened a group of administrators, faculty, and others for a brainstorming session on the future of higher education and the University of California last week
New fall 2003 freshman class from among record number of applicants
University officials announced that 8,679 students have been admitted into the fall 2003 freshman class. The students were selected from a record 36,920 applicants. The class is the strongest ever in terms of academic achievement as well as other interests, talents and achievements.
SARS concerns result in changes, cancellations for UC Berkeley programs abroad
The ripple effects of the global SARS outbreak are being felt at UC Berkeley in disciplines far afield from health, reaching from MBA students to marching band members.
On a rainy day, Cal Day provided jam-packed ark of activities
A Flash slideshow tells the story: an all-day downpour Saturday couldn't dampen the spirits of the thousands who turned out for Cal Day 2003, UC Berkeley's annual open house to show off the campus's wares.
White-collar criminal to speak April 16 about business ethics
A white-collar criminal recently released from prison will speak at the University of California, Berkeley's Haas School of Business on Wednesday, April 16. Walt Pavlo, a former MCI employee, is speaking as part of the Dean's Lecture Series.
"Skinny" galaxy harbors massive black hole at core
When astronomers see a spiral galaxy without a central bulge, they assume it has no supermassive black hole at the core. Only galaxies with a bulge, like our own Milky Way, should contain such black holes. A UC Berkeley astronomer has upset this assumption by finding a svelte spiral galaxy with a "featherweight" supermassive black hole at the center.
voice mail system malfunctioning
This morning the UC Berkeley campus began experiencing a systemwide problem with its voice mail. The campus is working with SBC to repair the problem. This announcement will be updated as progress is made.
Q&A on SARS: Tomas Aragon of the UCB Center for Infectious Disease Preparedness, on what we know and what we can do
Tomas Aragon, director of the UC Berkeley Center for Infectious Disease Preparedness, talks about what the campus can do to protect itself from SARS and what we can do to prevent the spread of respiratory diseases.
Q&A about the impact of SARS on UC Berkeley
Although no cases of SARS or suspected SARS have been reported at UC Berkeley, many in the campus community are concerned about this new disease. The NewsCenter answers some of the most frequently asked questions about how Berkeley is dealing with SARS, both on campus and in overseas programs.
Be prepared, be very prepared, says Center for Disease Control chief
Julie Gerberding, director of the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, says SARS and bioterrorism are major concerns but America's biggest health problem is obesity.
UC Berkeley's portrait of Plato is ancient artifact, not a fake, professor says
A portrait herm of the Greek philosopher Plato is emerging from a century of obscurity and disrespect to assume its rightful place in ancient history, thanks to the sleuthing of a University of California, Berkeley, classics professor. Stephen G. Miller says his research and scientific tests show the sculpture purchased for UC Berkeley and brought to its anthropology museum in 1902 is not a contemporary fake.
Recent campus recipients of various awards.
Website makes it easy to hire a Cal student
Faculty, staff, and others interested in hiring Berkeley students or recent graduates can post job openings at no charge on the CalJobs website.
Beyond the mainstream
Turning Corners a new exhibit of pieces drawn from the Berkeley Art Museum's permanent collection, is now on view through summer 2004.
E-mail ‘sigs’ a window on reality — your own
Before you trash your email, you might want to check for a “signature” at the end, where colleagues and co-workers valiantly assert selfhood, and in the process provide a window onto quirky obsessions, past lives, job frustrations, political convictions, and inner worlds.
The fall of Stanley Hall
Demolition of the half-century-old Stanley Hall shifted into high gear on April 3.
What’s the perfect Cal Day schedule?
The "Are there any questions?" tour, the "Face your fears" tour, and other ways to experience the Berkeley campus open house.
State education official pulls few punches
California Secretary of Education Kerry Mazzoni met with student leaders on April 3 to talk about student fees, the UC budget, and other issues affecting Berkeley students.
Campus, city generate cost-sharing ideas
An initial brainstorming session attended by staff and administrators from the campus, the City of Berkeley, and the Berkeley Unified School District yielded encouraging new ideas about ways to achieve cost-sharing benefits through mutual cooperation
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley community
Building nanotubes of gallium nitride rather than carbon yields optically active nanotubes
As scientists rush to exploit new nano-structures to build electronic circuits and sub-microscopic sensors, they also are trying to make more versatile building blocks. A UC Berkeley chemist has new created nanotubes from gallium nitride, capturing the best attributes of both semiconductor nanowires and carbon nanotubes.
START program would yield salary savings
UC has proposed a program to allow employees to voluntarily reduce their work time.
Nobel Laureates will appear Friday on Telegraph Avenue, on dozens of new street banners
Telegraph Avenue, with its many bookstores and cafés, has long been a gathering spot for artists and intellectuals, many of them affiliated with the University of California, Berkeley. On Friday, April 11, 18 of the campus's most famous scholars will join the mix on Telegraph - on dozens of handsome new street banners honoring Nobel laureates from UC Berkeley.
Charter schools suffer from ill-prepared teachers, unequal funding, says PACE study
The nation's ballooning number of charter schools relies heavily on uncredentialed teachers, misses out on available federal aid, and displays the same financial disparities that beset regular public schools, according to an unprecedented study by scholars with Policy Analysis for California Education, an institute based at Stanford University and the University of California, Berkeley.
Immune therapy shows potential against melanoma, ovarian cancer
Eight years ago, immunologist James Allison discovered a molecule on T cells that blocks an effective immune attack against tumors. Now, an antibody he created to release this brake is showing amazing effectiveness in Phase I trials against metastatic melanoma and ovarian cancer.
Student nuclear-engineering conference seeks to change attitudes in the nuke-free zone
When a national student animal-rights conference took place at UC Berkeley's Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union a few months ago, no one on campus batted an eye. After all, some people think animal rights and Berkeley go together like peanut butter and whole-wheat bread. But from April 2-5, the Student Union is playing host to something a little more incongruous: the student conference for the American Nuclear Society (ANS). That means 230 undergraduate and graduate nuclear-engineering students are converging within the City of Berkeley, the birthplace of the "nuclear free zone" concept.
Over the airwaves and in print, Berkeley scholars share their expertise on war
In morning newspapers, on afternoon talk shows and during nightly newscasts, more than two dozen scholars from UC Berkeley are sharing their expertise about the war in Iraq.
Hour-by-hour highlights for Cal Day 2003
A comprehensive list of hour-by-hour highlights for Cal Day 2003, UC Berkeley's annual open house which is expected to draw more than 30,000 visitors.
Cal Day will offer free, close-up look at campus for thousands of visitors
Cal Day, the University of California, Berkeley's annual open house, will be held this year on Saturday, April 12, and the campus expects to welcome an anticipated 30,000 visitors for hundreds of free activities -arts and cultural events, tours, faculty lectures, athletic competitions and more.
Professor Enrico Jones, an expert in minority mental health, dies at 55
Enrico Edison Jones, Professor of psychology at the University of California, Berkeley died on March 29, 2003 after a three-year battle with cancer. Jones lived in Oakland and was 55 years old. He was an expert in minority mental health, and psychoanalytic research.
UC Berkeley faculty analyze, criticize — and defend — Iraq war
A panel of UC Berkeley faculty convened on Tuesday evening, April 1, to discuss the economic, political and regional implications of the U.S.-led war on Iraq. "Our intent is to put as many ideas on the table as we can to have an informed discussion," said Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl, who introduced the forum. The question that the speakers seemed most compelled to examine was the most elemental of all: was the war in Iraq "just," or defensible, whether for reasons of national security, international stability, or moral responsibility.
A Bill of Rights for NAFTA?
Former Rep. David Bonior (D-Mich.) is on campus this week as a visiting scholar, sponsored by the Center for Latin American Studies.
Shorter items of interest to the UC Berkeley community
Hoffer Prize judges name 2003 winners
Three Berkeley staff members and two students have been named winners of the 2003 Lili Fabilli and Eric Hoffer Essay Prize.
Cal Day’s multiple melodious offerings
On Cal Day, Saturday, April 12, music lovers could easily spend all day in and around Morrison and Hertz Halls.
Where blue-collars and physics scholars meet
In the Physics department machine shop, highly trained craftspersons work side-by-side with scientists to create delicate and precise instruments that will be used in cutting-edge experiments.
Cosmic chemistry inside interstellar clouds points to galactic wind of low-energy rays
The chemistry inside interstellar hydrogen clouds can tell scientists a lot about conditions in the galaxy. The problem is understanding chemistry that goes on at some 50 degrees above absolute zero. Researchers from UC Berkeley and Sweden developed a way to do chemistry on cold H3+, a molecule that drives all reactions inside interstellar gas clouds, and concluded that the cosmic ray flux in the galaxy must be 40 times what astronomers thought.
NASA funds $173 million auroral satellite mission
A fleet of five satellite probes to be launched in 2006, will be designed, built and operated by UC Berkeley physicists searching for answers to the origin of auroral substorms.
Scholar in Iraq to document conditions of displaced civilians
Eleven years after his first visit to Iraq to investigate the mass killings of ethnic Kurds, Eric Stover, director of UC Berkeley's Human Rights Center, has returned to monitor the conditions of internally displaced people and warn of potential humanitarian disasters.
UC Berkeley spring break is March 24-28
UC Berkeley will be on Spring Break March 24-28. Classes will not be in session, but most campus offices and buildings will remain open.
Anti-war protest at UC Berkeley draws more than 1,500 people; 117 cited at Sproul Hall sit-in
More than 1,500 students and community members held a peaceful noontime rally today (March 20) on University of California, Berkeley’s Sproul Plaza to protest the war in Iraq. Some of the protesters then entered Sproul Hall and staged a sit-in on the first floor. In all, 117 people were arrested without incident.
Helping kids cope with war: expert says talk, play and routine are important
With "No War" signs in neighborhood windows and televised images of soldiers preparing for combat, parents may not know how to help their children cope with their concerns and fears. Most important is simply listening and speaking directly, says W. Thomas Boyce, MD, a professor of child development at UC Berkeley's School of Public Health who has 25 years of clinical experience in developmental pediatrics. Boyce has developed several tips to help parents reassure young children.
flares postpone SETI@home re-observation
SETI@home chief scientist Dan Werthimer re-observed 52 signals in search of messages from ET before his observing was postponed so that the Arecibo telescope could look at two solar flares. He resumes his search March 24.
Shorter items to interest to the UC Berkeley community
You’ve got …… nothing?
The extent of the UC Berkeley's dependence on e-mail came home last week, when a system failure directly affected all campus UCLink users.
‘World in a Frame’: Photo images from the exploration age
A new exhibition at the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology showcases the convergence of photography and exploration. The exhibit, “The World in a Frame: Photographs from the Great Age of Exploration, 1865-1915,” runs through March 2004; the images on display will rotate to display a second set of prints in the fall.
Restoring a legacy: Graduate students bring long-neglected Classical casts back to life
Deep in the bowels of a UC Berkeley warehouse, six graduate students meet for a Classics 270 seminar. Instead of looking at slides of sculptures, they pick up cotton swabs and tiny chisels — and begin attacking busts of Socrates and slabs of the Parthenon frieze. Donated over a century ago by Phoebe Apperson Hearst, the grimy plaster casts were long forgotten until classics professor Stephen Miller began a quest to restore and resurrect them.
Chancellor Robert Berdahl speaks out on U.S. foreign policy and the imminent hostilities with Iraq
Speaking as a historian and citizen, Chancellor Berdahl said, "I feel as though this is an unprecedented departure in American foreign policy: to launch an offensive attack on a sovereign nation that does not, even by the estimates of the administration, pose an immediate threat. Nor has it attacked us directly. It really crosses a psychological threshold that we have never crossed before in our foreign policy. And it's an important threshold insofar as it's always easier to cross it again once it has been crossed."
Channing-Bowditch housing project to begin soon
Construction of the new Channing-Bowditch Student Housing project is slated to begin later this month, eventually adding apartment-style living for approximately 230 students on the southside of the campus.
UCLink e-mail recovery nearing completion
The systems work done on UCLink Monday night (3/17) was successful, and the service is running well. The restoration of inboxes for accounts starting with the letters A, C, and D should be completed by 2 p.m. Tuesday.
New website lists more than 200 campus programs, resources for Bay Area residents
UC Berkeley's Office of Community Relations has launched a new website which offers a unique campus guide to a variety of academic, recreational and cultural resources. The website, Cal in the Community, allows the Bay Area community better access to over 200 programs and resources available through the campus.
UCLink e-mail system restored; data recovery is proceeding
With the UCLink e-mail system back in service, system administrators are working to recover undelivered mail messages and to improve system stability.
North Koreans are open to dialogue, say organizers of UC Berkeley conference
Delegates from North Korea, the United States, and several Asian countries are discussing regional security and tense global relations at a conference under way at UC Berkeley's Institute of East Asian Studies. "We don't expect diplomatic breakthroughs, but we do expect enhanced communication," said event co-chair Robert Bedeski in a press briefing March 14.
Sheldon Messinger, professor emeritus and a scholar in criminology and sociology, dies at 77
Sheldon Messinger, professor emeritus and a distinguished scholar in the fields of criminology and sociology, passed away March 6 at the age of 77. Messinger served as vice chairman for the Center for the Study of Law and Society at UC Berkeley from 1961 to 1970, and was dean of the School of Criminology from 1971 to 1975. Following his retirement, he remained an active member of the campus community, specifically as an advocate on behalf of UC emeriti and retirees.
Refuseniks: Three Israeli soldiers tell why they will not serve in the occupied territories
Three Israeli soldiers - one a visiting scholar in UC Berkeley's Near Eastern Studies department - shared their stories of what finally led them to a position whose unpopularity has trailed them from Israel to much of the United States. All three have signed the "Combatants Letter of Courage to Refuse," declaring that although they will carry out their responsibilities as Israeli Defense Forces, they will not serve in Israel's occupied territories.
UCLink e-mail system out of service
The UCLink email system is down and unavailable, and at this time there is no estimate of when the system will be back in service.
The transfer-student experience
Community-college students can not only be admitted to Berkeley (despite what their counselors sometimes tell them) -- they can achieve great success.
Boalt Hall’s death row defenders
The Berkeley law school's Death Penalty Clinic played a major role in a recent Supreme Court decision
A psychologist’s quest
The roots of Stephen Hinshaw’s research on childhood behavioral problems couldn’t be more personal.
The king of the klezmer collectors
A Berkeley professor who has collected 78rmp klezmer records for decades finds himself the inspiration for a musical revival.
Provocative political science class attracts wide following
For more than 20 years lecturer Alan Ross's class "Colloquium on Political Science," has been a favorite among students. Each week Ross invites a new guest speak to address the class and talk about the state or national political scene. The speakers are often passionate and provocative. Ross' goal is to bring in key political players who will challenge the students and give them a glimpse into real-world politics. Speakers have included former U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich, Democratic strategist Garry South, U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, University of California Regent Ward Connerly, and actors-turned-political-activist Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Professor emeritus and prominent international relations scholar Ernst Haas dies at 78
Ernst Bernard Haas, 78, Robson Professor of Government Emeritus in the University of California, Berkeley, political science department, died March 6 after a short illness. Haas joined the faculty in 1951 and was a prominent scholar in the fields of international relations and international organizations. Following his retirement in June 1999, he continued in an active role as a researcher and teacher on campus.
Researchers call for better studies on environmental links to breast cancer
A new UC Berkeley report says current research methods and health initiatives are insufficient when it comes to understanding and preventing non-genetic causes of breast cancer. The report provides recommendations for promoting better research on the environmental links to breast cancer.
Search for ET to look again at 150 signals
Thanks to more than 4 million people who've been searching for ET from their home computers, the SETI@home project has identified thousands of radio sources that could be signals from intelligent civilizations. Team members will travel to Arecibo Radio Observatory this month to take another look at the top 150 candidates.
Professor emeritus and noted zoologist Oliver Pearson dies at 87
Small mammal expert Oliver "Paynie" Pearson, former director of the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology and an energetic biologist known for his studies of animal populations in Peru and Argentina, has died at the age of 87.
"The wrong direction": Health policy expert Helen Halpin decries Bush's Medicare proposal
The challenge of reforming Medicare, the U.S. federal health insurance program created in 1965 for the elderly, has defeated several U.S. leaders. On March 4, the 43rd president took a stab, unveiling his administration's plan for modernizing Medicare. To evaluate the proposed changes, the NewsCenter turned to a UC Berkeley faculty expert on the subject: Helen Halpin, Director of the Center for Health and Public Policy Studies.
"Then and Now" photo exhibit documents over a century on campus
From demure to daring, from tree lined trails to tree lined trails, see it all in "Then and Now: Student Photographs of the Berkeley Campus," an exhibit opening today (Friday, March 7) at the University of California's Bancroft Library. The exhibit that continues through July 18 tells visual stories of the campus from the 1ate 1800s to today.
National Social Venture Competition draws record interest this year
The National Social Venture Competition, held annually at UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business, has drawn a record number of competitors from around the world. Entrants will compete in a variety of categories for a total prize pool of $100,000.
Students bring Cal to Sacramento for UC Day
UC Berkeley students joined the lobbying chorus at the state capitol this week as they took part in the annual UC Day in Sacramento.
Q & A: Social welfare professor discusses new welfare reform bill
Social welfare professor Neil Gilbert discusses a new welfare bill that recently passed the House and is making its way through the Senate.
Medical devices lead UC Berkeley Business Plan Competition for 2003
Medical devices have emerged as the leading product developed by semifinalists in the fifth annual University of California, Berkeley Business Plan Competition. The 25 semifinalists were selected in the 2003 competition by some of Silicon Valley's leading venture capitalists from a pool of 58 executive summaries.
Hassle-free motoring comes to campus
Campus car sharing program gives drivers access to vehicles 24/7, minus the headaches and expense of auto ownership.
"World in a Frame" exhibit highlights photography from exploration age
An exhibit of 35 photographic prints from pioneering photographers such as Carleton E. Watkins, Edward S. Curtis and others who recorded the American West and the world around the turn of the century opens Friday, March 7 at the University of California, Berkeley's Phoebe S. Hearst Museum of Anthropology. "The World in a Frame: Photographs from the Great Age of Exploration, 1865-1915" captures an era when photography and exploration intersected to provide the first visual images of many peoples, cultures and landscapes. All of the photos on display come from the Hearst collection.
It’s a wrap. And a bathmat, and a hotpad, and a turban …
The Recreational Sports Facility buys half a million towels each year. A large number of them soon disappear into the community. For RSF staff, the lowly gym towel a major budget item and a constant source of hassles and amazement.
Professor emeritus and public power expert Frederick Morrissey dies at age 82
Frederick Patric Morrissey, a professor emeritus at the University of California, Berkeley's Haas School of Business and a nationally recognized expert on the finance and regulation of public utilities, died on Feb. 27 at the age of 82 of complications from a brain aneurysm. Morrissey taught at UC Berkeley from 1949 to 1985. He also served as a commissioner of the California Public Utilities Commission from 1967 to 1969.
Conflict with Iraq: Berkeley prepares
for potential war
With the possibility of war on the horizon, UC Berkeley has assembled a collection of educational programs, counseling services and other resources designed to promote dialogue and learning in a climate of civility and tolerance.
UC Berkeley research may lead to a higher resolution functional MRI
Vision scientists at UC Berkeley's School of Optometry confirm a direct link between nerve cell activity and blood oxygen levels. Their research could lead to significantly higher resolution brain imaging tools, and potentially earlier detection of brain disorders.
'Life in the fishbowl': Resident Assistants have one of most demanding jobs on campus — and they love it
UC Berkeley junior Rakesh "Rocky" Gade, age 20 and a political economy major, has about 60 children. So does senior Molly Ann Cundiff, 21 and an integrative biology major, except one of Molly's is twice her age. "It feels like we're their parents," they laugh. "We're always talking about 'our kids.'" Gade and Cundiff belong to the student brigade of Resident Assistants (RAs), who in exchange for room and board put in a minimum of 20 hours a week providing an ear for any troubled student residents (or a shoulder to cry on) and enforcing rules such as no smoking, underage drinking, or playing soccer in the hallway.
Major awards have been announced for Alexis Bell, Alan Kolling, Eugene Myers, and Ken (Kyung-ho) Min. Harry Hathaway ('59) has received the campus's 2002 Chancellor's Award. The quarterly journal "Contexts" has been named best new social sciences journal.
Library offers two plump prizes for undergraduates
Nominations are currently being accepted for two prizes honoring student book collecting and library research. Undergraduates in all disciplines are encouraged to apply.
An orb by any other name: Debate over what constitutes a planet is far from settled
Ask any kid how many planets are in our solar system, and you'll get a firm answer: nine. But knock on a few doors in Berkeley's astronomy department, and you'll hear, amid the hemming and hawing, a whole range of numbers. This difference of opinion is part of a larger debate in the astronomical community over what constitutes a planet.
Spotlight on student entrepreneurs: Junior Charmaine Chua paints by the six-figure numbers
Charmaine Chua's climb up the ladder of success started out literally, as an intern at Varsity Painting. Now she's in charge of the whole East Bay, and her division grossed $100,000 last year. "I work every second that I’m not in school," says Chua, who's in her third year of a double major in business administration and legal studies.
Helping career dreams come true
More than 1,500 staffers have participated in the campus's Career Development Opportunity Program in the past six months. Many participants say the funds have helped make their dreams come true.
Unsung, ‘veiled’ Garvey takes center stage
Berkeley professor Ula Taylor has written the first book-length biography of Amy Jacques Garvey, wife of Marcus Garvey, and an influential writer, intellectual and activist in her own right.
East Asian Library partners with private collector to post historic Japanese maps online
A rarely seen and fragile collection of historic maps of Japan, some dating back four centuries, is available for public viewing online through a new partnership between the University of California, Berkeley's East Asian Library and private map collector David Rumsey. More than 200 images from about 100 early maps of Japan, including examples of especially rare woodblock print maps of the city of Edo (now Tokyo), from the library's Japanese Historical Map Collection are in the online collection.
UC Berkeley researcher discusses key findings in new EPA report on environmental risks to children’s health
Amy D. Kyle, an environmental health researcher at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health and one of five authors of a new EPA report on childhood exposure to environmental contaminants, answers questions about mercury exposure and how to avoid it.
University reaches settlement with students facing conduct charges from Wheeler Hall sit-in
The University of California, Berkeley has reached a settlement agreement with most of the students facing student conduct charges stemming from a protest and sit-in last spring inside Wheeler Hall, a major classroom building on campus.
Spotlight on student entrepreneurs: Junior Adam Fogel keeps Orange County rockin’
To be a successful entrepreneur, having a nose for an unfilled market niche doesn’t hurt. When Adam Fogel and his friend Luke Allen wanted to rent a rehearsal space for their high-school rock band, the only place available in their hometown was a run-down building in a deserted industrial area. It didn't even have any vacancies. Now they're the ones turning bands away, to the tune of $250,000 per year.
Cables hold promise in protecting existing buildings from bombs, researchers find
Civil engineering researchers at UC Berkeley found that steel cables could stop the impending collapse of a floor after an external support column had been knocked out. The test results were presented recently at the 2003 AAAS meeting in Denver.
Said scorns U.S. military action against Iraq, asserts Israeli human rights abuses — yet
still sees hope for peace with Israel
There can be no peace in the Middle East until the injustices committed by the Israeli government against Palestinians cease, argued Edward Said. Rather than go to war against Iraq, the United States should examine its support of Israel and by extension that country's considerable human rights violations, said the well-known writer, scholar, literary critic and political activist in a Zellerbach Hall lecture on Wednesday evening, February 19.
Professor emeritus and noted Shakespeare scholar Marvin Rosenberg dies at age 90
Marvin Rosenberg, a professor emeritus in UC Berkeley's Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies, died at the age of 90. A noted Shakespearean scholar, Rosenberg authored many books on the history of staging and interpreting Shakespeare's plays, showing the different choices from scene to scene that production companies have made over the centuries. He earned his B.A., M.A, and Ph.D. degrees all at UC Berkeley and joined the faculty in 1949.
Working with budget cuts
Though final budget numbers likely won’t be known until summer, the time to plan for decreased funding is now, say administrators in the Office of Human Resources (OHR). And to assist the campus during these challenging times, that office is available to help departments and units maximize efficiency and trim costs.
Berkeley to Oxford: the Rhodes not often taken
Berkeley’s newest Rhodes Scholar — the campus’s first in more than a decade — thinks there should be a steady stream of winners from Cal. Faculty, he says, can help make that happen
Berkeley freshman finds academic focus, and fun, on high-flying trapeze
When 19-year-old freshman Jacob Minkoff isn't poring over the books, he is soaring through the air at Trapeze Arts, a trapeze and circus school in Oakland's warehouse district. A big reason he chose UC Berkeley was its proximity to the trapeze school. The trapeze helps his focus and concentration, as well as being a great stress reliever.
Alum Jigar Mehta keeps his eye on the viewfinder all the way from UC Berkeley to the Sundance Film Festival
While Jigar Mehta was studying mechanical engineering at UC Berkeley, he was also learning the filmmaking business. After interning at Channel Five's Evening Magazine, he and two classmates shot and produced a video that introduces new students to life on the Berkeley campus. Then Mehta got the call of his life: did he want to go on a road trip as a documentary cameraman? The answer was yes, and the trip led him all the way to the awards stage at the Sundance Film Festival.
"Periodic Table" of proteins helps make sense of structure
Proteins snake and loop to form incredibly complex 3-D structures, but scientists are far from being able to predict these structures from the basic gene sequence. Chemistry professor Sung-Hou Kim has now come up with a "periodic table" of protein building blocks that he thinks will help scientists visualize the trillions of possible proteins that exist in nature.
Historical journal reports secrets behind infamous "Drake's Plate" hoax
Researchers who spent a decade digging into one of California's most infamous hoaxes -- a brass plate allegedly proclaiming Francis Drake's 1579 claim to the region -- now say they know who did it and have a pretty good idea why.
Spotlight on student entrepreneurs: Senior Stefan Hochfilzer serves up tennis lessons as community spirit
For Berkeley senior Stefan Hochfilzer, entrepreneurship is a family tradition. His father manages international hotels, his mom owns her own travel agency, and his 23-year-old elder brother founded a computer business. So when Hochfilzer turned 15, it was natural that instead of working as a lifeguard or a caddy like other super-athletic high school students, he began giving tennis lessons. Three years later, he had more than 100 clients, a couple of teens working for him, and the beginnings of an after-school athletic and academic program.
Law students raise $18,000 to publish anti-war protest
Beginning last semester, some of the students at UC Berkeley's School of Law were having a hard time with their classes. It wasn't academic pressure, but what they perceived as the vast chasm between the principles being taught in their constitutional, civil rights, and international law courses and the actions of the U.S. government. They decided to put their money where their mouth was — and buy a bullhorn in the New York Times to proclaim their views.
UC kids’ summer programs 2003
From science to soccer, backpacking to business, UC Berkeley has camps to entertain and enlighten kids of all ages this summer. A listing of offerings from the Lawrence Hall of Science, CalYouth, the UC Botanical Garden, the Haas School of Business and others.
Spotlight on student entrepreneurs: At 22, Anthony Levandowski is already a veteran businessman
Berkeley graduate student Anthony Levandowski has that rare combination of engineering brains and business acumen that once upon a time would have had venture capitalists speed-dialing his cell phone. And even now, after the dot-com crash, Levandowski and his business partner, Randy Miller, are this close to raising $600,000 in private financing for their nascent company, Construction Control Systems. Hard to believe, but if it gets off the ground, it will be the 22-year-old Levandowski’s second successful business.
Professor emeritus and labor law expert David Feller dies at 86
Renowned labor law expert and UC Berkeley School of Law professor emeritus David Feller died on Monday, Feb. 10 at the age of 86. Along with labor law, Feller participated extensively in civil rights litigation. Most recently he provided commentary for several news outlets on the West Coast port lockout.
Professor and his dogs have the right chemistry
As dean of the College of Chemistry, Clayton Heathcock has many constituents vying for his time. Things aren’t much different at home, where eight 80-pound Rhodesian Ridgeback dogs anxiously await his arrival every evening.
Half a dozen hearts in the right place
In anticipation of Valentine’s Day, the Berkeleyan salutes individuals who are particularly beloved in their corner of the campus.
'Horrendous': Nobel economist George Akerlof criticizes Bush administration's
economic stimulus package
"Ten Nobel Laureates Say the Bush Tax Cuts are the Wrong Approach" proclaimed a full-page advertisement in the Feb. 11, edition of the New York Times. Among the 10 is George Akerlof, co-winner of the 2001 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences and the Goldman Professor of Economics at UC Berkeley. The ad went on to say that "there is wide agreement that [the Bush plan's] purpose is a permanent change in the tax structure and not the creation of jobs and growth in the near-term…Passing these tax cuts will worsen the long-term budget outlook, adding to the nation's projected chronic deficits." The NewsCenter talks to Akerlof about why the petition was needed and what flaws he sees in the current economic stimulus package.
Student programmers are on a quest to find the Holy Grail of class schedules
With a mindboggling 7,000 classes offered every semester, students have a hard enough time just deciding what to take. Then there's figuring out a schedule without big gaps between classes. But thanks to homegrown scheduling apps like Patrick Shyu's Final Distance, you can optimize your lecture and leisure time.
UC Berkeley economists urge California legislature to accept tax increases and revisit Prop. 13
A group of distinguished economists from several University of California campuses and Stanford University has sent a cautionary letter to the California Legislature and Governor Gray Davis. The 14 economists detailed both short-term and long-term strategies that would put the brakes on the state's slide into the red, such as a sales tax increase and reintroducing the 10 and 11 percent income tax brackets. They also called for the legislature to revisit Proposition 13 and to overhaul the state budget process.
Size changes of Bacillus spores could lead to simpler, faster anthrax detector
Berkeley scientists are developing a test that may be able to shorten the 12-24 hours it takes to detect the presence of anthrax spores, bring that down to 10 minutes.
Grad student creates refuge for learning in Berkeley High classroom
What started out as a project to teach reading has turned into graduate student Elizabeth Anderson setting up a classroom that has become a safe haven for some of the high school's most fragile girls. One huge success has been enrolling five of these students in child development classes at Merritt College so they will have career skills when they graduate from Berkeley High. Anderson and the girls have formed a close relationship, and she feels she is working with some of the most talented students she has ever met.
Deaf Film Festival to offer cinema for, by deaf community
A first-ever Deaf Film Festival at the University of California, Berkeley's Pacific Film Archive Theater will be held later this month to highlight the work of deaf actors, film crews, directors, characters and culture. The three-day event, Feb. 21-23, will feature films, shorts and lectures in what organizers say is a West Coast first.
Genetically modified cotton crops produced greater yields, reduced pesticide
use in India
Cotton crops in India that were genetically modified to resist insects produced dramatically increased yields and significantly reduced pesticide use compared with non-bioengineered crops, according to the results of farm trials reported by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Bonn in Germany.
East scholar Edward Said to speak at Berkeley on February 19
Edward Said, one of the most prominent literary and cultural critics in the United States, will speak on campus Feb. 19 about "The U.S., the Islamic World, and the Question of Palestine." A Columbia University professor of English and comparative literature, Said is author of the groundbreaking book, "Orientalism," and his writings about the Middle East and its relationship with the West have greatly influenced scholarship and public opinion.
New study finds that semen quality may start to decline in one's 20s
With each passing year, semen quality in adult men declines, suggesting that age plays a greater role in male fertility rates than previously thought, according to a new study by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.
Winter Journal: Students say good-bye to the Rez
In their last dispatch from the Kumeyaay Reservation, the Alternative Breaks volunteers reflect on spontaneity vs. schedules, sharing instead of saving, and making history.
Worm shatters previous speed records for spreading through the Internet, California
computer experts report
A team of network security experts in San Diego, Eureka and Berkeley, Calif., has determined that the computer worm that attacked and hobbled the global Internet 11 days ago was the fastest computer worm ever recorded. In a technical paper released today, the experts report that the speed and nature of the Sapphire worm, also called Slammer, represent significant and worrisome milestones in the evolution of computer worms.
from the chancellor: Maintaining excellence amid lean budgets
In an open letter to the campus community, Chancellor Robert M. Berdahl discusses the impact of the state budget crisis on UC Berkeley, and outlines the process that will be followed in determining where spending reductions should be made.
2003-04 Budget Planning Committees
A list of members of the committees will develop strategies and implementation plans for budget and organizational initiatives related to required reductions in the campus budget for 2003-04.
Within the context of UC Berkeley's core institutional values, the Executive Budget Steering Committee has adopted a set of operating principles to guide the budget planning process for FY 2004.
William Jewell, professor emeritus of operations research and risk analysis
expert, dies at 70
William S. Jewell, professor emeritus of operations research at the University of California, Berkeley, and an internationally recognized expert in the field of risk analysis, died Jan. 27. He was 70.
UC Berkeley partners with City CarShare to mobilize campus
The ads say "Drivers Wanted." But if it's wheels you want instead, you could get the use of a shiny green VW Beetle through a new partnership between UC Berkeley and City CarShare.
Edward C. Stone, influential forest ecologist and professor emeritus, dies
Edward C. Stone, professor emeritus of forestry at the University of California, Berkeley, and an influential voice in the management of California forests, has died at the age of 85.
California's elderly will be healthier and more productive, says new report
In 2050, the elderly population in California will be healthier, better educated, more diverse and three times the size of the over-65 population in the state today, according to a new report prepared for state legislators by the California Policy Research Center, a University of California program.
UC Berkeley women sing, crack jokes for fame and fortune
Come clap your hands, stamp your feet, and wolf-whistle up a storm on Friday, January 31, in support of UC Berkeley's California Golden Overtones and alum Sumana Harihareswara (Political Science '02). They're among the 15 acts competing at Zellerbach Hall as part of the Apollo Theater Amateur Night on Tour hosted by Cal Performances. The prize: $1,000, two plane tickets to New York, and the chance to wow the fiercely critical Apollo audience in Harlem for fame and fortune.
come to campus looking for a few good — but not too good — men
On Tuesday, the Martin Luther King, Jr. Student Union was the site of auditions for "Spring Break: The Movie," the latest brainchild of reality-television mogul Mike Fleiss. A UC Berkeley alum and the creator of "The Bachelor," Fleiss has sent his casting crew in search of the perfect group of friends (mostly male, although a few female friends are permitted) to film going wild on a spring break trip to Mexico.
Mimi Chakarova wins 2003 Dorothea Lange Fellowship
Mimi Chakarova is the recipient of the University of California, Berkeley's 2003 Dorothea Lange Fellowship, awarded annually in honor of the late documentary photographer known for recording on film the Depression-era lives of California's migrant farm workers.
Student Winter Journal: Inspiring Native students to consider college
Over winter break, while most of their classmates relaxed with friends and family, 13 UC Berkeley students were playing a game called peon and dancing to bird songs with the Kumeyaay Native American community in Southern California. The trip was part of Alternative Breaks, a service/learning program operated through the Cal Corps Public Service Center.
cutting-edge dining hall features "excitement on the plate"
There's no mystery meat in the dining hall for hundreds of University of California, Berkeley, students. Crossroads, a new, state-of-the-art campus dining facility, has just opened at 2415 Bowditch Street, and UC Berkeley students and other diners can now watch their meals being freshly prepared with nary a traditional cafeteria warming light or steam table in sight.
UC Berkeley course examines U.S. foreign policy; lectures open to public
Numerous departments and schools across the University of California, Berkeley campus are offering courses this semester that address the particularly timely and gravely important issues of war, U.S. foreign policy and the Middle East. But one unit in particular is offering a foreign policy course that is open to students for academic credit as well as the general public for personal enrichment and knowledge.
auction raises an astronomical $16,000 for research society
To astronomers, staying up all night scanning the sky via computer monitor becomes routine. But one amateur astronomer is paying $16,000 to spend a night observing with UC Berkeley's stellar planet hunter, Geoffrey Marcy.
writers to examine possible U.S.-Iraq war in Zellerbach Hall debate
"How Should We Use Our Power? Iraq and the War on Terror," will be debated next week by two noted journalists at the University of California, Berkeley.
of Americans are failing to get recommended health care, new study finds
Tens of millions of patients with chronic diseases in this country are not receiving the type of care management proven to be effective, according to a new nationwide survey of physician organizations by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Chicago.
your old textbooks for this semester's needs
On Friday, January 24, the Associated Students of the University of California is sponsoring its first-ever textbook swap. Students with textbooks they no longer need as well as those looking for texts on this semester's lists can meet at designated tables on Lower Sproul Plaza and bargain directly with each other.
and math educator to lead Lawrence Hall of Science
Elizabeth K. Stage, an educator and leader with a national and international reputation in teacher development, student assessment and educational equity, has been named the new director of Lawrence Hall of Science (LHS), the University of California, Berkeley's public science center.
students graduating in record numbers and in record time
UC Berkeley students are graduating faster and in larger numbers than ever before. Graduation rates are at an all-time high, according to data released today by campus administrators. More students are obtaining their bachelor's degrees, and an increasing number are doing so in record time.
sends UC Berkeley satellite into orbit
A small UC Berkeley satellite was placed into polar orbit Sunday, Jan. 12, embarking on a year-long mission to study the hot bubble of gas that envelops our solar system and nearby stars. The Cosmic Hot Interstellar Spectrometer satellite (CHIPSat), originally scheduled for launch on Dec. 19, lifted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California aboard a Boeing Delta II rocket at 4:45 p.m. PST Sunday.
PBS "NewsHour" visits
UC Berkeley to explore the issue of untenured teachers
On the January 8 edition of the PBS television network's "The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer," correspondent Spencer Michels visited UC Berkeley to explore all sides of the controversial issue of the higher education system's reliance on teachers without tenure.
to address little-known aspects of Jewish scholarship on Islamic world
How did Jewish scholars of the 19th century perceive the world of Islam? Until historian John M. Efron began studying this question, scholarship largely overlooked the role Central European Jews played in "Orientalism" - the effort by Europeans of that time to understand the Near East. Efron, the new holder of the University of California, Berkeley's Koret Chair in Jewish History, will address these issues on campus at a Jan. 22 public lecture.
telescope catches early afterglow of gamma-ray burst
A team of University of California, Berkeley, astronomers announced today that its robotic telescope has captured one of the earliest images ever of the visible afterglow of a gamma-ray burst.
early history may have been interrupted by big burp
Using a state-of-the-art computer model of the lunar interior, geophysicists at the University of California, Berkeley, have shown that a mighty burp early in the moon's history could account for some of its geologic mysteries. The burp of hot rock, like a blob rising to the top of a lava lamp, would have lifted a blanket covering the moon's core, allowing the core to cool quickly enough to produce a magnetic field.
tests erode rather than enhance education, says psychology professor
The current "testing and sorting" culture in U.S. schools, which holds children accountable for scoring well on standardized tests, erodes rather than enhances education in America, according to new research by a UC Berkeley psychology professor.