Though I’ve spent many years immersed in the seasonal rhythms of higher education, I am always inspired by the excitement and energy that usher in the start of the fall semester. Walking around Berkeley in August and witnessing the controlled chaos of move-in, I experience a great thrill thinking about the journeys of intellectual and personal discovery that await our students in the coming academic year.
It is truly a wonderful time to be at Berkeley: We have made excellent progress in addressing the university’s financial challenges, we have committed to doubling our student housing capacity in the next decade, and we are seeking to add a capstone discovery experience to every undergraduate’s education. We are hiring immensely talented faculty who are at the top of their fields in subjects from physics to philosophy, and who will help fan your children’s intellectual passions into flame. We recently inaugurated a strategic planning process that will help us create a roadmap for our campus’ long-term development. We have strongly reasserted our commitment to free speech and to being a place where sharply divergent points of view can be expressed and debated.
I hope you’ll take a moment to read about my back-to-school press conference, where I shared more information about the state of the campus and my current priorities.
All of us at Berkeley are grateful that you have entrusted us with your children’s education, and we are excited to partner with you to help your sons and daughters grow into the intelligent, thoughtful, and responsible leaders that the world needs. And if there’s ever something you need, don’t hesitate to ask – we’re here to make your students’ experience at the world’s greatest public university the best it can possibly be.