UC Berkeley turned 150 years old on Charter Day, March 23, 2018. Alumni from the Classes of 1947 through 2017, plus family, friends, and current students, came to campus to show love for our university and celebrate our diverse, global legacy.
Within two years of its chartering in 1868, the University of California welcomed both men and women, regardless of their socioeconomic status. These first, foundational moments established UC Berkeley’s principles.
Students often pushed convention to fight for greater inclusivity over the past 150 years, and the university has held a tradition of listening at the edge, making changes that honor Berkeley’s mission of diversity. Women were not allowed to join the Cal Band at its founding in 1891—in 2018, the band’s drum major and student director are both young women. As a student at Berkeley Law in 1976, I witnessed the first major wave of growth in the number of diverse students enrolled at Boalt. At California Law Review’s Annual Alumni Banquet this April, I was surprised and greatly encouraged by the number of young women, underrepresented-minority, and LGBTQ leaders who embody inclusivity in their own communities.
On Charter Day at Alumni House, I spoke with many generations of alumni from UC Berkeley. Each represented an integral part of a university community Chancellor Christ described as “extend[ing] in space and through time”—a community committed to inclusivity and expansion.
The Cal Alumni Association (CAA) is committed to this same mission. Last year, we conducted a survey of our alumni community to help assess how we are progressing at achieving our mission. To our respondents, I express my gratitude for each thoughtful and candid opinion, which will lead us as we grow programs and services that include and represent the totality of our alumni population.
At Alumni House this spring, leaders of Alumni Chapters across the country shared ideas at our annual Alumni Volunteer Leadership Conference.
Alumni also interviewed prospective Black Cal students for the African American Initiative’s first scholarship award class. By creating space to expand, we connect with our university’s time-honored tradition of shattering the status quo, and celebrate our ever-growing university and our alumni community.
Clothilde Hewlett ’76, J.D. ’79
View the 2017 Cal Alumni Survey at alumni.berkeley.edu/survey.
Posted on June 5, 2018 - 3:40pm