by Jose Rodriguez
Signaling a new era of cooperation between students and the university, the Associated Students of the University of California has adopted a resolution commending campus fund-raising efforts and pledging support in the capital campaign.
"This kind of statement shows that the Berkeley campus is united at the crucial moment when private support is needed more than ever to sustain the university's excellence," said C. D. Mote Jr., vice chancellor of University Relations. "I think the students at Cal have shown deep affection for the university and foresight in seeing the connection between our fund-raising efforts and the quality of their education."
The resolution singles out the UC Berkeley Foundation for its leadership in raising money for new facilities, such as Soda Hall--the new $35 million computer science building paid for entirely by private funds --as well as pushing forth an ambitious $1 billion campaign.
The campaign, which has raised nearly $200 million in private gifts in the past 18 months, aims to increase student aid and faculty support, and promote research initiatives and new academic programs.
"We need to really work together," said ASUC President Andrew Wong, adding that the student body has "never had such good relations" with the university.
"Looking at the recent budget cuts and the crisis in higher education, you have to develop new ideas and find ways to support our university," he said.
Wong presented the student resolution to the UC Berkeley Foundation Board of Trustees at its meeting in Los Angeles this month. Board members are leaders in business and the private sector from throughout the state charged with coordinating fund-raising efforts for the Berkeley campus.
Like the ASUC, Berkeley's Faculty Academic Senate last fall approved a resolution supporting campus fund-raising efforts.
Another ASUC measure adopted this month commends the California Alumni Association for cultivating ties to the estimated 350,000 Berkeley graduates around the world.