UC Berkeley News
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UC Berkeley Web Feature

Frequently Asked Questions: UC Berkeley's efforts to help students displaced by Hurricane Katrina

Q. How many students displaced by the hurricane is UC Berkeley accommodating?
A. UC Berkeley has agreed to host up to 50 undergraduate students and 18 law school students, and is working with about 70 graduate students who have expressed an interest in studying here.

Q. Who are the undergraduate students and where are they from?
A. The undergraduates are from Tulane, Xavier, Dillard and Loyola universities and from the University of New Orleans. Almost three-quarters of the 41 students who have arrived at UC Berkeley are originally from California. They range from entering freshmen to seniors and have a wide range of majors.

Following recommendations from the Association of American Universities, which is helping to coordinate with universities across the country the hurricane response for displaced students, the students are at UC Berkeley on visiting status so that they remain part of their home institutions. As visiting students, they pay tuition and fees to their home institutions, not to UC Berkeley.

At this time, the undergraduate admissions office is not considering any more requests from interested students.

Q. How is UC Berkeley handling requests from graduate students?
A. The Graduate Division has had inquiries from about 70 displaced students and expects to accommodate as many of them as possible. Those students have been directed to contact individual graduate schools and programs at UC Berkeley to determine if their academic needs can be met. As of Sept. 12, only a handful of these graduate students had arrived on campus to study.

UC Berkeley currently has about 9,000 graduate students enrolled in more than 100 graduate programs.

Most of the inquiries came from Tulane students, and the bulk of these students were interested in studying at the School of Public Health, the School of Social Welfare and the Haas School of Business. Any graduate students studying at UC Berkeley would be here on visiting student status, which means that they pay tuition and fees to their home campuses, not to UC Berkeley.

Q. Who are the students attending UC Berkeley's School of Law (Boalt Hall)?
A. The 18 students at Boalt Hall are second- and third-year law students, all from Tulane.

Q. How were the undergraduate students selected?
A. More than 120 students approached UC Berkeley about studying here. A group of staff members volunteered to work over the Labor Day weekend interviewing them to find out what courses the students needed and when they could arrive at UC Berkeley.

Admissions officials checked class availability and urged the students to arrive quickly since classes had already begun on Aug. 29. Students not offered a spot were advised about contacting other UC and California State University campuses that are on the quarter system and had not yet begun classes.

Q. How are the students at UC Berkeley being housed?
A. Campus housing officials have arranged for residential hall housing for at least 16 displaced students, with several others either placed or referred to rentals in the community. Almost half of the undergraduate students studying at UC Berkeley temporarily have a home address within commuting distance to the campus. Offers to house students in individual homes and through other means have poured in from staff, faculty, alumni, the Greek organizations and other students.

At this point, housing officials do not need emergency temporary housing, but still have a need for offers of individual, private-entrance rooms with bathrooms or studio apartments located near campus. Please contact Becky White at Cal Rentals (bwhite@berkeley.edu) with "Katrina Housing Offer" in the subject line.