How $1.44 billion can make a difference


The new Walter A. Haas Jr. Pavilion seats 12,000, large enough to host NCAA tournaments. The arena, built with funds raised through the capital campaign, has 2,600 seats reserved exclusively for students.
Peg Skorpinski photo

07 March 2001 | The gargantuan effort called the Campaign for the New Century wrapped up its work at the end of 2000, having raised $1.44 billion from private sources, $340 million beyond its announced goal. That’s big money, and its impact, already palpable on campus, will be felt by students, faculty, staff and programs for years to come.

“The books are closed on this campaign, and Cal has set a new standard for American public higher education,” said Vice Chancellor for University Relations Donald McQuade, addressing staff who worked on the campaign. “And what’s at stake here? Nothing less than Cal’s excellence across the board.”

How is the campaign’s success changing the campus and how will it sustain Berkeley’s quality in the future? Here are the campaign’s central objectives and examples of the people and programs already reaping its benefits.

Chancellor’s Millennium Fund
Freshman Andrea Davis likes finding out what makes up “stuff.” Her physics class on elemental particles, “The Stuff that Stuff Is Made Of,” taught by experimental high-energy physicist Bob Jacobsen, lets her do just that. The freshman seminar inspires, while explaining science in a fun way.
“You get the feeling Professor Jacobsen really wants to be there, and you can tell he has a passion for teaching,” Davis said. “Even if you only love one aspect of the science when you start, you will come out loving it all, as the class makes you see how everything fits together.”

Adds classmate Catherine Mukai, “I’ve learned not only about the esoteric world of elementary particles, but also about power lines, earthquakes, the tides . . . the list goes on. It’s holistic and still very focused and challenging.”

The Freshman Seminar Program — offering small classes exclusively for freshmen — has gotten a boost from unrestricted gifts to the Chancellor’s Millennium Fund. The funding helps faculty develop these novel courses, which run the gamut from “The Biology of Shyness” on the neurobiology and ecology of personality and human behavior, to “The First Six Days,” on early Jewish and Christian interpretations of creation.

A campaign cornerstone, the Millennium Fund goal — $50 million — was exceeded by $2.6 million. Gifts in this area have also allowed Chancellor Berdahl to fund library acquisitions, student computer labs and undergraduate job programs.

Maintaining academic excellence
Andrew Neureuther, the Conexant Systems Distinguished Professor, now has at his disposal a “war chest” from the income from his endowed professorship. Those funds help the electrical engineering and computer sciences professor teach, attract top graduate candidates, send students to conferences, buy library books and conduct groundbreaking research.

Neureuther, whose expertise is in photolithography, says the professorship allows him to take risks, “so that when I go through transitions in grants, I can be my own boss and say ‘I want to go on studying this.’”

A distinguished professorship — funded by a gift of $1 million or more, half in endowment and half readily available to support programs — is one way the campaign helps Berkeley recruit and retain top faculty. The campaign raised $181.5 million, with a goal of $130 million, for faculty and graduate student recruitment. The campus raised endowment funds to support 501 graduate fellowships (with gifts of $300,000 or more), 68 faculty chairs (with $500,000 to $1 million), and 50 distinguished professorships.

Improving undergraduate life
This element of the campaign focused on improvements for undergraduate students’ life on campus. The goal was $60 million; $57.4 million was raised. Proceeds helped to fund undergraduate educational initiatives, multimedia and information initiatives, undergraduate research programs, and the Walter A. Haas Jr. Pavilion.

The new pavilion includes an arena with 12,000 seats (big enough to host NCAA tournaments), 2,600 of which are reserved specifically for students; classrooms and the newly refurbished human biodynamics lab; and a $500,000 state-of-the-art sports medicine and weight-training facility.

Ensuring educational opportunity
Undergraduate Polly Ma juggles two majors — psychology and classical civilizations — plus two jobs, in between planning for law school and helping her mother raise her sister. She accomplishes this seemingly impossible feat with help from the Incentive Awards Program.

Launched in 1992 and funded by the campaign, the program began with the goal of bringing a Berkeley education within the grasp of high school students who, despite great socioeconomic hardship, exhibit exceptional academic and leadership potential. Beginning with a handful of schools in San Francisco and only $50,000 in seed funding, the program has raised $30 million and now serves 38 high schools in northern California and 22 in Los Angeles. Each student receives $24,000 in scholarship funds, along with intensive on-campus mentoring.

“I can’t say enough about the Incentive Awards Program,” said Ma, a first-generation American. “It’s a great support network. I’m so glad I’m a part of it — and of Cal.”

The campaign provided educational opportunity to California’s K-12 students through other programs, as well. The campus raised $116.1 million — exceeding its $85 million goal — to help preserve the high caliber of its student body. That money includes funding for 928 new undergraduate scholarships and expanded K-12 educational outreach.

Preeminence in the arts, humanities, social sciences
Although the campus fell short in reaching this goal, support for the arts, humanities and social science is already a post-campaign fundraising focus, particularly funds to construct the East Asian Library and Studies Center. Approximately 46 percent of the $35 million estimated price tag has been raised.

There were successes, though, particularly in endowments for the arts. The Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive will benefit from several endowments. A $2 million gift endowed the museum’s Matrix program, a series of contemporary art exhibitions for work traditionally not shown in galleries or museums. The endowment doubles the number of shows each year for emerging artists. In the past, Matrix has featured work by William Wegman, Willem de Kooning, Robert Irwin and Louise Bourgeois.

In all, the campus raised $72 million for the arts, humanities and social sciences. In addition to the East Asian library and arts endowments, the campus increased its library collections, in particular for the Morrison Room, and improved performance and library facilities for music.

Preeminence in the sciences and engineering
Professor Ron Gronsky harnesses research by the world’s top physicists, chemists and engineers to create new materials. His work, under the auspices of the campaign’s Health Sciences Initiative, may someday provide such advances as high-resolution mapping of electrical activity in the human heart.

His work with new materials is among the most complex being undertaken at any university. The goal: develop stronger, lighter, smaller and longer-lasting materials with industrial, medical and environmental applications.

“By manipulating materials down to the level of the atom,” said Gronsky, “we can control how things go together and engineer these materials for new applications.”

The intellectual soul of Berkeley’s new materials effort will reside in the Hearst Memorial Mining Building, now undergoing renovation with funds from the campaign and the State of California. Upon completion, the Beaux Arts-style historical landmark will house state-of-the-art laboratories and teaching facilities the Department of Materials Science and Mineral Engineering.

For the sciences and engineering, the campaign raised $160.7 million, exceeding its $129 million goal, to keep Berkeley in the lead in solving the latest scientific and technological challenges. This included creation of the Wills Neuroscience Center (which features the most powerful magnetic resonance imaging scanner in the country devoted solely to brain research), numerous endowments in science and engineering departments, the newly formed Department of Bioengineering, and other work in the emerging fields of biomedical sciences.

Ongoing support
Ongoing support to the campus represents a significant portion of the campaign. The campus raised $747.2 million, besting its goal of $546 million. Funds in this category provide continuing support for faculty research and departmental projects not specifically covered by the campaign’s six goals. These unrestricted funds help with such ongoing programs as operations in athletics, museums and Cal Performances.


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