Fundraising campaign to extend impact of top-ranked college
With new technologies underpinning breakthroughs to meet the challenges facing us today, UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering has made historic progress in raising private funds to accelerate innovation and meet the demand for engineers and new generations of technology leaders.
The college is playing a key role in UC Berkeley’s $6 billion fundraising campaign, launched publicly on Saturday, Feb. 29. The campaign’s “quiet phase” began in 2014; since then, Berkeley Engineering has raised $476 million through nearly 50,000 gifts and pledges.
The funds raised during the campaign will help to grow the size of the faculty, significantly boost financial support for Ph.D. students, enhance the undergraduate learning experience in the classroom and beyond, and create new facilities and spaces to spur learning, discovery, collaboration and innovation.
“I am grateful for the generous support of alums, parents and friends of Berkeley Engineering to sustain the excellence of our research and education programs, even as undergraduate and graduate enrollments have grown to record-high levels,” says Tsu-Jae King Liu, dean of the College of Engineering. “Key to our success as the nation’s top-ranked public school of engineering is our ability to recruit the best new faculty and students. This campaign will ensure that we can provide them with the resources that they need to thrive at Berkeley and to have a transformative impact on society.”
Philanthropy during the first phase of the campaign has had a major impact. To date, gifts to Berkeley Engineering have endowed 18 new chairs and professorships to support the work of distinguished faculty, 12 fellowships for graduate students, dozens of scholarships for undergraduates, as well as funding for research, academic programs and facilities.
Private support has also augmented Berkeley Engineering’s experiential educational offerings with opportunities for hands-on learning, teamwork and leadership, entrepreneurial thinking and innovation through design. Popular new programs have emerged over the course of the campaign to date, hosted by the Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation and the Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology. Philanthropy also made possible the new Management, Entrepreneurship, & Technology Program (M.E.T.) that allows students to earn bachelor’s degrees in both business and engineering in four years.
As the campaign continues for the next five years, Berkeley Engineering is targeting these goals:
- Grow the faculty: Applications for undergraduate admission to Berkeley Engineering have doubled in the last five years, and total student enrollment has grown by 31% in the past decade. All the while, the number of full-time faculty has not changed. To expand enrollment capacity to meet demand, UC Berkeley must grow the size of its engineering faculty.
- Increase graduate student support: Graduate students are tomorrow’s engineering leaders and are critical to the university’s research and teaching mission. By substantially building endowment for fellowships, Berkeley Engineering aims to offer every incoming doctoral student five years of guaranteed funding; this will help to attract the best students in every field.
- Offer a transformative undergraduate experience: Berkeley’s engineering programs are rigorous, but graduates today need more than top-flight technical skills. Private funds make possible programs that build skills in communication, collaboration, leadership and entrepreneurship and that cultivate multidisciplinary and multicultural competencies.
- Modernize buildings and facilities: After an inclusive study in 2019, the college has developed an ambitious facilities master plan to transform its neighborhood into vibrant, welcoming and inclusive spaces for learning, discovery and innovation. This plan includes additional space to support more faculty and increasing student enrollment, new research capabilities, and upgraded teaching facilities.