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College of Natural Resources

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John Scharffenberger


CNR alum, entrepreneur, onetime chocolatier, and member of CNR's Advisory Board encourages CNR Alumni to meet the

New Alumni Challenge!


As a member of the UC Berkeley Board of Trustees, John has requested that his challenge funds be directed to CNR first! 


In order for the College to receive John's matching funds, however, an equal amount of funds must be received from CNR alumni  who graduated in 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, plus CNR students who will graduate in 2011, with both graduate or undergraduate degrees to any College of Natural Resources Fund.


New Alumni - Please make a gift today to support undergraduate or graduate students of the College of Natural Resources and to ensure that John's challenge funds impact CNR students.


CNR Graduate Student Support Fund helps CNR graduate students achieve  their scholarly pursuits.


Your gift to the Berkeley Fund for Natural Resources supports an array of CNR undergraduate programs:


*over 100 students with SPUR grants conduct research with CNR faculty each year


*CNR Field Experiences


*CNR's NEW Tutoring in Chemistry 1A & 3A tailored specifically for  CNR courses


*CNR's Student Resource Center & computer lab


*faculty retention and recruitment


*Dean's Night Out -Freshman Seminars


*and more...


Learn more about the New Alumni Challenge.


Who's eligible?

•All undergraduate and graduate alums —
from the Classes of 2006 to 2010, plus all current students (undergraduate and graduate) who will graduate in spring 2011 are eligible.

What is matched?

•Gifts made after July 1, 2010, up to $1,000 per donor to any UC Berkeley
school, college, or
program. Donors who make any combination
of gifts totaling $500 or
more will become members of The Charter Hill Society.

What if I make more than one gift?

•Because the $1,000 limit is per-donor, not per gift, you
can make as many gifts
as you like. Amounts above the $1,000 donor
cap will not be eligible for the matching funds.

How long does the challenge last?

•The UCBF Trustees have generously  provided
$1 million in matching funds for gifts made after July 1, 2010.


The challenge will continue as long as
funds are available.

I made a New Alumni Challenge gift last year.
Am I still eligible?

•Gifts from alums from the
Classes of 2006 to 2010, plus all current students
who graduate in spring 2011 are eligible. Gifts from alumni who
graduated in 2005 no longer qualify for the challenge match, but we hope they will still continue to support their alma mater! 




 Help CNR Give HUGS 

Help CNR give Help for Undergraduate Students (HUGS) to discover their passion for research. The Zhang fund was established to honor a senior researcher, Shibo Zhang, who worked for many years in faculty member Peggy Lemaux’s laboratory.  

Working to Improve the Nutritional Value of Sorghum for Africans

This semester the first Zhang award, the first HUGS, was given through SPUR to senior GeneticsSPUR Student Maya and Plant Biology Major, Maya Mileck (right). Because of her interests in easing the plight of the developing world, Maya is working on an honor’s research project to improve the nutrition of sorghum, a key food for 300 million Africans.

Uncovering the Mystery of 1200 Year Old Sacred Lotus Seeds   

Next semester’s Zhang award recipient is Jenny Rui-Xuan Zhang (below), also an honor’s student in Genetics and Plant Biology. Jenny will work on a project to understand the long-standing mystery of how 1200-year-old sacred lotus seeds are able to grow into normal SPUR Student Jennyplants. Her work may lead to a better understanding of their ancient role in Chinese medicine.

The College of Natural Resources has some of the best and brightest undergraduate students in higher education today. But for many to realize their dreams, they need opportunities to work side-by-side with professors and participate in faculty research projects.  Help Under Graduate StudentsThere is a successful student enrichment program in CNR, SPUR (Sponsored Projects for Undergraduate Research), that provides opportunities for undergraduates to participate in faculty research.

Now there is a new, endowed fund that is dedicated specifically to support CNR’s SPUR students, the Shibo Zhang Endowed Fund for Undergraduate Research. When Senior Researcher Shibo Zhang passed away in a tragic accident, Dr. Lemaux and his family decided to use the money, given in his memory by friends and colleagues, to establish the Zhang Fund – a fitting tribute for someone who considered it a privilege to work with CNR’s undergraduates in his research.

The Berkeley Fund for Natural Resources, is the Dean's discretionary fund. Each year, the Dean allocates up to $100,000 in current-use SPUR grants for both student-initiated and faculty-initiated research projects. Remember the day you learned that you had been awarded a SPUR Grant? Now its your turn to give a current student the wonderful experience you had at CNR. You can give at our secure online site.

Tis the Season to think about how you can help deserving students realize their research dreams! Think HUGS! Help students discover their passion while working to solve some of the world's most pressing problems – from climate change to improving diets to alleviate disease, from renewable energy to easing the global food crisis. Projects like these give these aspiring young students an opportunity to experience the thrill of research firsthand – a situation that can lead them to the next stage of their professional careers. So you, a chocolatier, and CNR faculty can provide needed support for CNR students. 

Consider giving generous HUGS!

On behalf of CNR's deserving students, thank you to the entire CNR community of alumni, faculty, parents and friends who support our outstanding students.




This special matching program will double any donations made by emeriti, faculty, staff, and their spouses to endowment funds that provide students with needs-based scholarships and graduate fellowships at the University.

Special thanks to CNR faculty & staff who have established scholarship & fellowship endowments.

If you wish to establish and endowment fund to support CNR students, please contact the Office of College Relations at:





Join CNR's social and professional networking sites on 

Facebook & Linkedin.

Put yourself on the CNR Alumni Map here.

Post to the CNR Alumni Blog here.

Give to CNR

The College is grateful for the support from CNR alumni and friends. Learn more about the Campaign for Natural Resources here.  Please make a gift today at our online site to support the college's student enrichment programs.


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