Subject: Cal Parents Volunteer Newsletter - December

Cal Parents Volunteer Newsletter
January Edition 2017

Greetings from the Cal Parents Office!

Welcome to 2017!  We hope you enjoyed some wonderful family time over the holidays with your Cal Bear. The fall semester flew by, and this semester promises to do the same. May we suggest a New Year’s resolution to get to know Berkeley better by taking advantage of the wide-ranging activities and events across campus? (You’ll find a list of recurring free campus events/performances near the end of the newsletter). Please also read on for opportunities to sign up to volunteer and engage with other families this spring. Thanks for all you do for Cal!

Cal Parents Serve Hundreds at Food Pantry

Ambassador Newsletter - Jan 2017 - Food Pantry Thank You FamCal parents responded swiftly to the fall newsletter and Facebook requests for volunteer help at the UC Berkeley Food Pantry, quickly filling 20 two-hour shifts during Dead Week and Finals in December.

Junior Carolyn Hsieh, Food Pantry Operations Coordinator, expressed gratitude to parent volunteers and said, “Student volunteers and myself were able to focus on our studies while resting assured that the pantry would continue to provide nourishment for students during review and exam week.”

More than 800 students were served during the two-week period, the busiest peak-time ever in the Food Pantry's history (click here for latest news on the Food Pantry). Parents went the extra mile and provided recipe tip sheets to encourage students to accept and prepare donated kale; initiated a monetary contribution from the Bowles Hall Alumni Association to fund the pantry; and greeted students with warmth and care as they visited the pantry.

Sincere thanks to the generous parents and alumni who made a great difference for Cal students:  Andrew Jensen, Aniluz Mariano, Beth and David Marks, Betty Rothstein, Chris MacDonald, David Pingitore, Ellen Lee, Jani Singer, Jesse Estolano, Joanne Harano, Julie Chiu, Keely Everett, Kristin Shore, Kristine McCabe, Marti Greene, May Chen, Naomi Makihara, Randy Shingai, Robert Habibi, Sandy Stephan, Susan Petersen, Suzanne Greva, and Valerie Jung.

Regents' and Chancellor's Scholarship Interviews - Volunteers Needed!

Offered to the top 10 percent of entering freshmen within California, the Regents’ and Chancellor’s Scholarship is the highest academic honor awarded to undergraduates at Berkeley. This impressive group of applicants are the first to be admitted. Volunteers are needed to staff an informational table to answer questions from these newly-admitted students’ parents while their children are being interviewed. Help Berkeley continue to recruit the best and the brightest students to campus!  You DO NOT have to be a parent of an RC Scholar to help.

To sign up, click on the date and location that works for you. The Berkeley interviews will be held at Sproul Hall. The Los Angeles area and San Diego interviews will be held at hotels.

February 23-25   Berkeley

March 4-5   Arcadia/Pasadena

March 11-12  San Diego

Facebook “Live” Events for Parents

Join Cal Parents on our Facebook "Live" sessions.  These “Live” sessions offer information about Cal and the people who are working to make your student’s educational experience top notch.  We offer parents the opportunity to ask questions prior and during the event.  Questions are placed in the comments section and we try to have them answered during the "Live" session.  Mark your calendars now for our upcoming sessions:

Advocate for Berkeley in Sacramento  - NEW Volunteers Wanted!

Join the Cal Alumni Association (CAA) in raising your voice in Sacramento! CAA is partnering with the campus’ Office of Government and Community Relations to relaunch the Cal Advocacy program and Ambassador Newsletter - Jan 2017 - CAA Advocacy Capitolmobilize parents, alumni, and friends to advocate on behalf of the university.

Register as a Cal Advocate – to be among the first to know about legislative issues affecting Berkeley and to voice your concerns and tell elected leaders why Cal matters to your family, and to California. Your individual stories will combine in a powerful voice that political leaders need to hear as they make decisions that impact current and future Golden Bears.

Learn more about this important effortthen click the yellow “Join” button to register. Towards the end of the registration page, you will be asked, “How did you hear about us?” Please enter “Cal Parents Ambassador newsletter” to help us track your participation for Berkeley.

Good-Bye CalSO, Hello Golden Bear Orientation (GBO)

In August, Berkeley will launch a comprehensive, week-long orientation program for incoming undergraduate students: Golden Bear Orientation (GBO). In contrast to former CalSO sessions scheduled throughout the summer, GBO will convene all 8,500+ new undergraduate students shortly before the start of classes and provide academic advising, college-specific programming, community-building events, mandated critical trainings, and introductions to the campus community.

Berkeley’s department of New Student Services (NSS) is recruiting 1,000 current Cal students to serve as Golden Bear Orientation Leaders from August 15 -22. Student leaders will be given priority class enrollment during Phase I of spring 2018 registration and receive valuable leadership training and professional development. If you would like the Cal Parents Office to nominate your son or daughter to be an Orientation Leader and have NSS send them a personal invitation to apply, please email Rose Hsu by February 9.  Nominated candidates will get lead time to submit their applications. Any student, however, may apply by the February 24 deadline.

All new incoming students will move in August 13-14 prior to GBO, so please mark your calendars now if you would like to help welcome new students and parents during Move-In weekend this summer!

Ambassador Spotlight - The Aravind Family

“We chose to become Cal Parent Ambassadors because we enjoy the opportunity to meet and provide meaningful responses to parents as they try to learn more about Cal and the vast opportunities awaiting their children. We were in their shoes before and greatly appreciated the helpful feedback given to us by parent volunteers when our kids were admitted to Cal. We sincerely believe in the tremendous value of a Cal education and the experience it provides.”Ambassador Newsletter - Jan 2017 - Aravind family move-in

These are the words of Cal Parent Ambassadors extraordinaire, Akila and Balan Aravind of Fremont, CA. Since fall 2014 when daughter, Aishwarya, began at Cal, Akila and Balan have represented Cal at key outreach events such as RC Scholar Interviews, Cal Day and Move-In Weekend. In the past two years, hundreds of prospective and incoming Cal families have been greeted by their warm smiles and reassured by their personal accounts of life as Cal parents.  

Aishwarya Aravind at Kansen Chu award ceremony - May  2016

Often accompanied by their children, the Aravinds have made it a family mission to share their love of Cal!  Son Ashwin, a Regents' and Chancellor's Scholar, graduated in 2013 with degrees in Molecular Cell Biology and Business Administration, and is currently in his second year at Stanford Law School. Daughter Aishwarya is a junior studying Public Health and Political Economy. Like her parents, she is an avid volunteer, devoting countless hours helping senior citizens at the India Community Center for the past six years. Last spring, she received the Community Hero Award from State Assemblymember Kansen Chu and a Certificate of Commendation from Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese for her dedication and service. Congratulations, Aishwarya, and thank you Aravinds!  We look forward to seeing your friendly smiles soon on campus!!


Admitted Student Receptions - Sign-Ups Next Month

In April, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions and CAA Alumni Chapters will be hosting 30 receptions throughout the country--from Honolulu to New York--for newly-admitted students to learn more about Cal.  Volunteers will be needed to staff a Cal Parents informational table to welcome and answer questions from parents of students who are considering Berkeley.  Stay tuned next month for a detailed schedule and sign-ups for these regional events.

Ongoing Campus Events

Story Hour in the Library
Monthly prose reading series takes place in Morrison Library inside the main Doe Library unless otherwise indicated. Thursday, 5 - 6 pm (check website for specific dates)

BAMFA (First Free Thursdays)
Visit the BAMFA, located at 2155 Center St, Berkeley for a free visit on the first Thursday of each month. Galleries are open all day and guided tours are offered free of charge.

Music - Noon Concerts
The UCB Department of Music presents a series of free weekly concerts each semester in Hertz Hall on Wednesdays, beginning promptly at 12:15pm and ends by 1pm.

Lunchtime Poetry
Monthly poetry reading series takes place in Morrison Library inside the main Doe Library on the first Thursday of the month from 12:10 - 12:50pm.

UC Botanical Garden
Go on a free docent-led tour of UC Botanical Garden every first Wednesday of the month 1:30-2:45pm, located at 200 Centennial Drive, Berkeley.

Berkeley Graduate Lectures
The Graduate Council Lectures are free admission and open to the public. Lectures are videotaped and audiotaped, available for viewing or listening at the Berkeley Language Center in B-40 Dwinelle Hall, 510.642.0767, ext 24 (See website for more details).

Subscribe to a weekly “critic’s choice” email digest of events at Cal by clicking here.

Berkeley Pride

Berkeley Ranks as #1 Coding School in the US and #3 in the World

Kiplinger Ranks Berkeley as #3 in Value for Public Institutions

Berkeley Among the Top Institution for Upward Mobility

Oscar Nominations for Berkeley Grads

Campus News

UC Regents Approved Modest Tuition Increase

UC Freshmen Applications Hit New High

Important Dates to Note

Reminder: 2017 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) applications now being accepted

If you have problems replying to any links or have questions about the Ambassador Program, please contact Rose Hsu.  As always, we are grateful for your continued commitment and enthusiasm for Berkeley!  Go Bears!!

Cal Parents Staff
  • David Ortega, Director of Parent Services & Communication,
  • Jason Smith, Director of Parent Philanthropy & Engagement,
  • Karla Rodebush, Associate Director for Parent Philanthropy & Engagement,
  • Colleen Cahill, Assistant Director for Parent Philanthropy & Engagement,
  • Rose Hsu, Assistant Director for Parent Philanthropy & Engagement,
  • Michelle Mielke Walsh, Senior Development Analyst for Parent Philanthropy & Engagement,
  • Kelly Yun, Development Associate for Parent Philanthropy & Engagement,

Check out the Cal Parents website and Facebook page for more information just for parents.

Stay up-to-date with the latest news and events at Berkeley: Berkeley NewsCenter, UC Berkeley Events.



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