News Briefs

22 August 2001 |

Grant targets K-12 teaching on gardens
As gardens sprout in K-12 school yards around the country, a small group of Berkeley educators is intent on making sure they nourish the mind as well as the body.

With a $500,000 grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, staff at the UC Botanical Garden will take curricula they’ve developed around school gardens and re-tool them for K-12 teachers across the nation.

“We’re trying to make the school garden an integral and exciting part of the school’s classroom curriculum,” said Jennifer Meux White, associate director for education of the UC Botanical Garden, who specializes in science education. “The garden can be a rich learning experience.”

For information on the program, call 495-2805.

New director leads alumni association
Randall Parent, former deputy city attorney for the City and County of San Francisco, in July was named executive director of the California Alumni Association, which represents graduates of the Berkeley campus.

“I’ve been a ‘Go Bears’ kind of guy since I was four years old and sat on my dad’s lap at football games,” he said.

Parent, 46, was born in Berkeley and raised in Clayton, and graduated from high school in Concord in 1973. His parents are both teachers with degrees from Berkeley.

Parent entered the Cal campus as a freshman in 1973, as a music major, and played various brass instruments in the Cal Band all through college.

After graduating from Berkeley in 1977, Parent worked as a band director, school administrator, and then city attorney.

Web service offers access to state data
A new online service now allows researchers and the public to discover and use government data about California.

Using Counting California, developed and hosted by UC’s California Digital Library, usersmay access current and historical census data, almanac-style statistics, county business data, and a range of education, crime, election, and demographic information from nearly a dozen different sources. Searches may be done by topic, geography, title, and data provider.

Counting California’s web address is

Proper disposal of monitors urged
Computer monitors and television sets are a hazard to the environment and should not be disposed of in the garbage, according to Environment, Health & Safety officials.

In March 2001, the Department of Toxic Substances Control, the agency that governs hazardous waste disposal in California, classified used computer monitors and television sets as hazardous waste because of the lead content of cathode ray tubes.

EH&S is working with Excess, Surplus & Salvage and Campus Recycling & Refuse Service to ensure that all unwanted campus computer equipment is properly managed. Proper disposal methods have been distributed to departmental safety coordinators and computing officials.

Contact EH&S at 642-3073 for help in disposing of unwanted monitors and television sets.

Report graffiti to new campus hotline
The campus community is encouraged to report graffiti using the Anti-Graffiti Hotline, at 643-0890.

“We really need the help of everyone on campus to help us combat graffiti,” says Karen Abesamis, of Physical Plant—Campus Services. “Having people call in makes the process of removing graffiti much easier, because we know exactly where to go.”

Physical Plant—Campus Services is also sponsoring a Cal Clean-Up Day, Friday, Sept. 28. To volunteer, call the hotline number.

New campus travel card is available
A new U.S. Bank Visa travel card, which allows holders to charge business and travel expenses worldwide, has replaced the University-sponsored Diners Club card.

The U.S. Bank Visa card links directly to the planned travel reimbursement system, which will expedite payment processing to VISA and will permit travelers to charge their approved travel directly to the University.

For those who previously held a Diners Club card and have not yet received the new card, or do not have a University-sponsored travel card and wish to use one, an application is available at, the Travel Office Web page. Fax the completed application to 643-0234 for processing.

For information on the new travel card program, contact Millicent Cajina at 642-0438 or e-mail

Stop smoking, lose weight, online
Health*Matters, Berkeley’s health promotion program for faculty and staff, is offering two new online services for losing weight and quitting smoking.

“Weight 4 Me Online” is a motivational eight-week program to help users achieve nutrition and exercise goals.

Participants can set standards and track their progress on the Web site and will also receive e-mail health tips and recipes.

Enrollment is $10. See to register. The same Web site offers resources for smokers who want kick their addiction.

Call 643-4646 to receive a free companion kit on smoking cessation.


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