University of California Berkeley

Berkeley Online Regular Edition Masthead
Vol XVIII, No. 1   |  May 14, 2011  |  News for the Cal Family Online Since 1994

Commencement Happening Now

Commencement 2011 happening now
At this moment, more than 2,400 graduates in caps and gowns are marching across the stage at Commencement ceremonies taking place at Edwards Stadium. More than 12,00 are expected to attend, and you can follow the event live on Twitter.

Highlights of Commencement include:

  • A speech by University Medalist Aaron Benavidez. A double major in sociology and rhetoric from Stockton, Calif. and the youngest son of working-class Latinos, Benavidez earned the honor of top graduating senior. He recently said that “only at Berkeley could someone who was hungry for more, someone who wanted to experience a challenge, someone, like me, succeed.”
  • Graduating senior Austin Whitney, in a wheelchair since a 2007 car accident paralyzed him from the waist down, plans to stand and walk at this year’s commencement ceremony. He will be wearing a robotic exoskeleton developed by UC Berkeley engineers to improve mobility for paraplegics.


The Campaign for Berkeley reaches $2 billion: philanthropy fuels Cal’s future
The Campaign for Berkeley is hitting its mark. This spring, donors helped Cal surpass the $2-billion milestone in the $3-billion effort, illuminating a new financial reality: Philanthropy will play a central role in guaranteeing Cal’s future. The newest edition of The Promise of Berkeley features this story along with others spotlighting Berkeley's impact around the globe, including student, faculty, and alumni projects in places ranging from Turkey to Tahiti, and profiles of parent and alumni donors in Asia who are making a big difference on campus despite being an ocean away.

UC Berkeley launches groundbreaking disability research initiative
UC Berkeley, viewed by many as the birthplace of the disability rights movement, this week announced plans for a sweeping new research initiative that will make the university a worldwide leader in disability studies. It includes two new faculty positions and multidisciplinary research projects related to disability that involve 10 faculty members from eight campus units. The effort will be housed in the Haas Diversity Research Center.

Pac-12 announces landmark media deal — how it affects Cal
The Pac-12 Conference last week announced it is teaming up with ESPN and FOX Sports Media Group on a landmark agreement for a broadcast and national cable television package that extends and expands long-time partnerships with both media companies. The media rights package will benefit all members of the conference by generating new revenues, expanding the reach of the conference and providing more national exposure, Cal’s Intercollegiate Athletics office reports.

Meet tomorrow’s interactive games, gizmos, and medical devices
Health-related devices figured prominently in this year’s exhibit of prototypes by students in the School of Information course “Tangible User Interfaces.” The annual showcase, held May 2 and 4, also featured assistive devices for everyday life in the modern world, as well as experiences more aesthetic than utilitarian.

Wall Street Journal on Cal’s baseball resurrection
A recent issue of The Wall Street Journal delved into how Cal baseball was saved from elimination this spring and points to a potentially new model for the survival of college sportsnationwide. Meanwhile, the San Francisco Chronicle in an editorial hailed the saving of all sportspreviously slated for elimination.

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