University of California, Berkeley - Overview & Background

The University of California, often referred to as Berkeley, was started in 1868. It is a public research university and is one of the 14 founding members of the Association of American Universities. United States National Research Council consistently ranks the University’s famous graduate programs in the top 10 in their fields.

The University of California offers various degrees through schools like the Haas School of Business, the College of Engineering, the School of Law, and the Graduate School of Education.

Students pursuing a Masters at College of Engineering can pursue advanced degrees in eight areas. These areas include Industrial Engineering & Operations Research, Applied Science & Technology, and others. 

Former Names

University of California (1868–1958)

Established

March 23, 1868

Founder

California State Legislature

Also known as

UCB

University Type

Public Research University

University Motto

Let there be ligh

University City

Berkeley, California
Acceptance Rate

27%

Graduation Rate

91.6%

Employment Rate

61%

Faculty to Student Ratio

1:19

Endowment

$6.8 billion (2021)

Campus Size

8,163 acres

Official Website Link

University of California, Berkeley 

Contact Details

+1 510-642-6000

University of California, Berkeley Virtual Tour

Ranking

The University of California's ranking is always among the top ten in the world. It is also considered as the top public university in the country. University of California's world ranking is #30 according to QS Global World Rankings 2021.

Acceptance Rate

The University of California's acceptance rate is around 11-14%. It gets way more applications than it can admit. Therefore, it is important to have an excellent academic profile to gain admission to the university. The average GRE score for the University of California for technology on quantitative is around 166 and verbal is around 157.

Infrastructure

The University of California is located in the Bay area and its campus is spread over 1200 acres. Berkeley has one of the most modern campuses in the country. The campus is home to world-renowned research institutes such as the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute, the Space Sciences Laboratory, and others. Students love the Strawberry creek that flows through the campus. The library system of the University, with 32 libraries and more than 11 million titles, is one the largest academic library system in the country. 

Residing Options

The university provides on-campus accommodation to all its international students. Undergraduate students can live in residential halls. The University also has student co-ops and not-for-profit housing cooperatives for its students. However, on-campus housing can be a tad-bit costlier and thus graduate students prefer to live off-campus in areas such as ‘Northside’. 

Faculty and Pedagogy

The Faculty of Berkeley is quite renowned in their individual fields. In fact, J. R. Oppenheimer, who led the Manhattan project to create the first atomic bomb, and Nobel laureate Ernest Lawrence, who invented the cyclotron, have taught here. Additionally, quite a few Nobel laureates, MacArthur fellows and Pulitzer Prize winners teach at Berkeley. The University’s The College of Engineering has 256 full-time faculties on staff. 

The pedagogy at Berkeley is excellent and it places huge importance on research. 

Fees

The  University of California fees for its majority of academic courses is around $26,000 yearly for Indian students. The annual off-campus living expense is around $9000.

Scholarships & Financial Aid

Studying at UC is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and its high graduation rates put you on the fast track to a fulfilling career. One of the best financial aid programmes is made available by the University of California. It helps students from all walks of life - with grants, scholarships, low-interest loans, and more - in a variety of ways. It's also worthwhile.

What you are eligible for is determined by a variety of variables, but it all begins with a financial assistance application. Even if you don't think you'll be eligible, you should apply for financial aid. It's the only way to ensure that, regardless of your income level, you'll be considered for every sort of assistance available.

Jobs and Placements

The top recruiters employing graduates from the university include:

  • Google, Inc - $76,522 - $137,740
  • Apple Computer, Inc - $102,556 - $159,960
  • Kaiser Permanente - $59,598 - $115,039
  • Amazon.com Inc - $60,331 - $117,730
  • Salesforce.com, Inc.- $58,723 - $141,122.

The most popular job profiles amongst the university alumni include:

  • Software Engineer
  • Mechanical Engineer
  • Data Analyst
  • Data Scientist
  • Senior Software Engineer
  • Project Manager
  • Financial Analyst 

As per the official data:

  • 21% of engineering graduates found jobs through Campus Recruitment
  • 7% through Handshake (internal search)
  • 17% through Networking
  • 19% through Internship
  • 24% through Campus Fair
  • 8% through Direct Contact with Employer
  • 5% through the Internet/Social Media.

UC students are in high demand in a variety of fields. Its challenging curriculum, along with a program-wide practicum, equips students with the analytical abilities, technological competence, data science tools, and managerial savvy they need to lead organizational change.

The Following are Some of the Recruiting Firms:

  • Amazon
  • Capital Group
  • Clearwater Analytics
  • Capital One
  • Deloitte
  • Google
  • Apple
  • Deutsche Bank
  • ebay
  • PricewaterhouseCoopers
  • Disney
  • Microsoft
  • Barclays Bank
  • Citigroup
  • Bank of America
  • Amgen
  • BlackRock
  • McKinsey
  • Thomson Reuters
  • Facebook
  • UBER
  • CITI Bank
  • Nestle
  • SONY
  • American Express
  • Wells Fargo
  • Credit Suisse
  • Nike
  • KPMG
  • Sova Capital Limited

Notable Alumni

Some famous alumni from University of California, Berkeley include:

  • Marguerite Higgins, Journalist; honored on a commemorative postal stamp issued by the United States Post Office.
  • Sonia Nazario, Journalist at the Los Angeles Times
  • Willard Libby, Professor of Chemistry
  • Thomas J. Sargent, William R. Berkley Professor of Economics and Business at New York University
  • Silvio Micali, Ford Professor of Engineering at MIT      

Verdict

This University is right there at the top - among the top five colleges in the country in any field. University of California graduate admissions are quite difficult to crack, so lap it up if you have got one. 

University of California, Berkeley Location

Berkeley is located on the eastern side of the San Francisco Bay Area. UC-Berkeley lies in the eastern part of the city. The campus is nestled between the scenic Berkeley Hills in the east and downtown Berkeley on the south, west, and north. The beautiful Strawberry Canyon forms the northeastern fringe of the campus. It is hardly a thirty-minute walk from downtown. Get down at the Downtown Berkeley BART station and exit to Shattuck Avenue.

The campus is easily accessible by road and rail. Caltrain in the Southern Pacific Bay Area are well connected to the transit system. Besides, AC Transit buses also connect to the UC-Berkeley campus area. Due to its strategic location, not only does the campus get the best of the bustle of the city and the serene natural surroundings, but it also becomes readily accessible through freeways. The Bay Area freeways leading to the campus are I-80, I-880, I-580, Highway 13, and Highway 24. These freeways connect to I-5 and US 101.

UC-Berkeley main campus is a one-hour drive northeast across the Bay from the San Francisco International Airport and a half-hour by road northwards from Oakland International Airport. It lies at an hour and a half distance by road from the Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International airport.

University of California, Berkeley  Map Location

Address: Berkeley, CA, United States

Student Diversity & Preferred Profile

For students, professors, and staff, the University of California aims to foster diverse, egalitarian, and inclusive communities. The University hopes to achieve this goal by promoting activities that promote a diverse living, learning, and working environment. As a result, UC has made strides in a number of crucial areas relating to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

These include:

  • A rise in the number of African Americans and Hispanic/Latinx students enrolled in college.
  • All major domestic racial/ethnic groupings have seen a rise in transfer admissions and enrolment.
  • A rise in the number of people from underrepresented groups (URGs) accepted into PhD programmes, particularly in the physical and life sciences.
  • In most subjects, the proportion of African American, Hispanic/Latinx, American Indian, and Pacific Islander doctoral applicants, admits, and enrollees from UC closely mirrored the pool of Bachelor's degree recipients from U.S. colleges/universities in 2018–19.

UC's graduate programmes attract students from all over the country and the world, including around one-tenth of the university's graduate students who are undergraduates. As a result, the University of California's initiatives to diversify its undergraduate student body also help to diversify its graduate student group.

In the United States, female students account for less than half of Bachelor's degree recipients, along with UC PhD students in Physical Sciences and Engineering and Computer Science. In fields except for Engineering and Computer Science, where female representation is actually higher than that of U.S. Bachelor's degree recipients, female representation among UC doctoral enrollees from U.S. colleges and universities is just 5% of female representation among all U.S. Bachelor's degree recipients.

Underrepresented groups (Hispanic/Latinx, American Indian, Pacific Islander, and African American) account for 29% of undergraduate students. They make up about 13% of graduate academic students and 16% of graduate professional students.

35 percent of graduate academic students and 18 percent of graduate professional students are international students.

Campus & Accommodation

UC students have a range of housing options, but some of them require early application. On all of UC's campuses, there is a provision of residing as a single student in residence halls. Married students may be able to secure lodging at UC apartments, but these spaces are limited and must be applied early. Housing costs will be significantly higher for students who are accompanied by their spouses.
There are many other options for accommodation.

Students live in private homes, apartments, and rooming houses on most campuses. Many students share housing and expenses with other students. In a few schools, student cooperatives exist, where students work a few hours per week in exchange for cheaper room and board. Students may require work licences in order to live in cooperatives in some instances.
Foreign House is a dormitory for international and U.S. students.

Each school's housing office can offer you detailed information on UC and private housing. Your acceptance to UC does not guarantee that you will be assigned to on-campus accommodation. If you want to live on campus, you must submit an application for UC housing by the deadlines set by each institution.

Comparison with other Universities

The University of California's combination of academic excellence, research prowess, and dedication to social mobility places its campuses at the top of numerous college rankings lists.
Around 42% of UC freshmen are the first in their family to attend college, and about 40% are eligible for Pell Grants, a federal financial aid programme for students from households earning $55,000 or less per year. According to UC's annual Accountability Report, which was released in July, other selective public universities have a 22 percent low-income student population, while selective private universities have a 16 percent low-income student population.

In rankings announced by Shanghai Jiao Tong University, nine University of California campuses were ranked among the top 150 universities in the world based on research and faculty excellence.In the past, Academic Ranking of World Colleges favoured American universities, with UC Berkeley topping the list of public universities, followed by UCLA, UC San Diego, and UC San Francisco.Since the rankings began in 2003, UC Berkeley has consistently placed in the top four. UC Santa Cruz entered the top 100 for the first time this year.

UC awards 40% of California's undergraduate degrees and 70% of the state's PhD degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math.Many of those students are contributing to the University of California's five discoveries each day and the research that helped create 70 new California businesses in 2014.All UC campuses have students who volunteer in their communities and around the world. In the past, UC has been a major source of Peace Corps volunteers.

U.S. News arrived at its conclusion by evaluating academic outcomes, with graduation and retention weighing heavily in its methodology. All of the top schools have excellent six-year graduation rates and great freshman retention rates.The University of California consistently ranks first in national and worldwide rankings, regardless of whether academic performance, research quality and reputation, selectivity, value, public service, or a variety of other variables are considered.

Scholarships and Grants

Consider grants and scholarships to be free money or money that does not require repayment. Grants and scholarships (sometimes known as "gift aid") help students afford college. The majority of UC's, the federal government, and the state of California's gift aid is based on need. The federal Pell Grant programme, the California Grant programme, the Middle-Class Scholarship programme, and the Blue and Gold Opportunity Plan are just a few of the programmes that offer grants and scholarships.

A loan is money that you borrow and must repay with interest (you may hear terminology like "borrowing" or "taking out loans"). Loans assist you in covering fees that are not covered by grants or scholarships.

Federal Student Loans

Regardless of income, most students who are U.S. citizens, permanent residents, or qualifying non-citizens are eligible for federal student loans. Unlike private loans, federal student loans are mandated by law to offer a variety of flexible repayment alternatives and loan forgiveness benefits that private lenders may not provide.

Federal student loans are the best option for most students and families that elect to borrow. Repayment on federal student loans does not begin until after you have graduated from college, and with set interest rates and payment options, monthly installments are easy to handle.

Student Loans From Private Lenders

Private loans, unlike federal loans, are administered by private lenders - either banks or private institutional lenders - who decide the loan terms. This could imply that they have varied loan qualifying and rate requirements (they can have a range of interest rates and fees). We recommend that you conduct your homework and contact UC campus financial aid experts who can walk you through your alternatives before applying for a private student loan.

Parent Loans: PLUS Loans

Most families without a bad credit history can get a federal PLUS loan, but you must file an FAFSA to get one, even if you don't expect to receive "need-based" financial aid. The entire cost of attendance minus all available financial aid is the maximum amount a family can borrow. Repayment to a student's family can be lowered or delayed until the student and any siblings have graduated from college.

Jobs and Work-Study Opportunities During College Time

During the school year, the majority of students who receive financial aid work part-time. You can either look for part-time jobs on or off campus on your own, or you may be eligible for Federal Work-Study funding (or campus work-study).
 
Financial Aid Schemes at UC

  • Blue and Gold Opportunity Plan - Under the Blue and Gold Opportunity Plan, if your family's yearly income is less than $80,000 and you qualify for financial aid, you won't have to pay any systemwide tuition or fees.
  • MCS (Middle-Class Scholarship) - The MCS provides financial assistance to middle-class students attending UC, covering between 10% and 40% of systemwide tuition and fees.
  • California DREAM Loan Program - It helps eligible undocumented AB 540 undergraduates, borrow money to pay for education at the UC.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it true that financial aid is only available to students from extremely low-income families?

Gift aid and work-study or part-time employment, along with the parent and student loans, are available to enable families with a range of incomes to fulfill their expected contribution. Whether or not they believe they qualify, all students should apply for financial help.

Does UC offer precedence to students whose relatives have attended the university?

No, as a public institution, and in accordance with long-standing UC admissions policy, UC does not provide children of alumni or contributors priority entry.

For admission reasons, a student has deemed a resident if he or she can respond yes to any of the following questions:

  • Have you attended or will graduate from a California high school for at least three years, from grades 9 to 12, and will or have graduated?
  • Have you spent the last 12 months in California?
  • Is your parent or legal guardian a California resident if you're under the age of 18?
  • Is a UC employee or a UC-affiliated national laboratory employee your parent, legal guardian, spouse, or registered domestic partner?

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