Berkeley universities

University Profile: Tell me more about UC-Berkeley | Go to college | Elizabeth LaScala

Many schools are compared to Harvard, including the University of California-Berkeley (UC-Berkeley), affectionately nicknamed “Cal”. The first institution in the University of California system, UC-Berkeley was founded in 1868, so its nickname is clearly tied to this educational milestone in Golden State history.

Since its founding, Cal has nurtured its faculty, students, and alumni toward scholarly achievement comparable to the Ivy League and other highly selective universities. Here is the short list of glowing successes: 23 graduates who became Nobel laureates; 2nd only to MIT in its output of Sloan Research Fellows; 785 graduates received National Science Foundation Scholarships since 2015, and UC-Berkeley has historically topped the list of NSF scholars in the country. If you are a chemistry enthusiast, you may know that eight elements of the periodic table, including berkelium, were discovered in Cal. If you’re a physics buff, Cal is home to the world’s first cyclotron.

Students admitted to UC-Berkeley have grades and test scores comparable to those needed for admission to exceptionally selective private universities. The average unweighted GPA was 3.9 among admitted freshmen and only 18% of students looking to join the freshman class in 2021 were offered admission. Notably, Cal, along with the rest of the UC system, went blind to testing in the fall of 2021 and no longer uses test scores in the admissions process.

Those who can get into UC-Berkeley generally stay. About 97% of freshmen return for their sophomore year, a retention rate like other extremely selective colleges. Students typically graduate within four years, although the 76% 4-year graduation rate gets a boost from transfer students from California community colleges entering as juniors. Within six years, just over 90% of these students graduate from undergraduate degrees.

Remarkably, all of Cal’s academic departments are considered world-class, but the most popular majors include social sciences, biological and biomedical sciences, engineering, and language studies. And students who declare one of the least favored majors are likely to have a more personalized experience than those who declare one of the most popular—a fact of life at most public and even private colleges across the country.

UC-Berkeley expects all students to choose an undergraduate division when applying. But unlike most other major public universities, Cal does not allow freshmen to enroll directly into their excellent Haas School of Business. Those interested in business are advised to check out Undeclared Pre-Business Administration as their major. The undergraduate program is a general business degree with concentrations (accounting, business communication, finance, marketing, and organizational behavior) instead of majors.

Bustle characterizes the UC-Berkeley campus community and adds to its unique culture. Sproul Plaza outdoor student tables near the east end of campus, Sather Gate, are a long-standing tradition. Students gather here to encourage civic engagement and political activism. Campus life is legendary with over half a century of commitment to free speech. There are over 1,200 recognized student groups, including clubs and organizations built around many cultural, political and social perspectives. The neighborhood immediately surrounding the Telegraph Avenue campus has an “urban-bohemian” feel. Many shops and restaurants lean towards the entrepreneurial spirit and are largely geared towards students. Public transportation to San Francisco and Oakland is plentiful and affordable.

The UC-Berkeley Career Center is excellent with more resources than most diligent students would ever have time to use. It is particularly interesting to note that there are more than 20 internship and career fairs on campus as well as employer trips and spring break internships. Over 900 employers participated in career and internship fairs held last year. It is one of the few universities to organize internship fairs in the fall and spring. That said, a student has to reach out to use the many resources available and no one holds your hand at Cal.

Cal is not for everyone, regardless of academic achievement. thriving students not need to be picked up and have the ability to survive large and even jumbo class sizes as freshmen and sophomores. Additionally, students with a serious, focused, and scholarly approach to academics, including well-honed study and time-management skills, are among those most likely to find academic and social success at Cal.

Elizabeth LaScala PhD guides college, transfer, and graduate applicants through the complex world of admissions. She helps students choose majors and programs that interest them, builds lists of best-matched universities, offers personalized writing coaching, and tools and strategies to help students navigate each step of the process. admission with confidence and success. Elizabeth helps students from all backgrounds maximize scholarship opportunities and financial aid scholarships. Call (925) 385-0562 or visit Elizabeth at her website to learn more.

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