Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Chancellor: UC Berkeley becoming a federal university
Chancellor: UC Berkeley morphing into federal university (excerpts)
February 23, 2011 | Louis Freedberg | Californiawatch.org
As it gets more funding from the federal government, and less from Sacramento, UC Berkeley is effectively morphing from a state university into a federal university, according to Chancellor Robert Birgeneau. In an interview yesterday, Birgeneau said the transformation will "require us to think through what our role is both in the state and nationally." He first made the compelling case for applying the "federal" label to California's most famous public university at a conference organized by the Travers Program in Ethics and Accountability on the Berkeley campus earlier this month.
…Birgeneau said Berkeley finds itself in the position of many other state universities that also have seen dramatic declines in state support. When he talked recently with University of Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman about UC's predicament, she told him, "Welcome to the club." Among the questions raised by the shift in funding, said Birgeneau, is "how much autonomy should individual campuses have" if the state only provides a small portion of its income. Another question is "What should the balance be of in-state and out-of-state students?" Berkeley has substantially boosted the number of non-Californians it admits, benefiting from the higher tuition they pay. As a result, nearly 20 percent of undergraduates admitted to UC Berkeley this year were either out-of-state or international students.
…Birgeneau said he had not fully fleshed out his concept of what it means to be an increasingly federally supported university. But, he said, "the reality is that with the progressive disinvestment in higher education by the state, the state is becoming a tertiary player."
Full article at http://californiawatch.org/dailyreport/chancellor-uc-berkeley-morphing-federal-university-8816
Note that UCLA, largely because of its med school, receives a larger fraction of funding from the feds than Berkeley.
UPDATE: The Sacramento Bee publishes a supportive editorial at http://www.sacbee.com/2011/02/24/3425961/future-of-uc-hinges-on-choices.html