University of California System
Seal of the University of California
(Latin: "Let There Be Light")
||Robert C. Dynes|
||Oakland, CA, USA (Headquarters)|
||15,842 acres (64 km²)|
When the State of California ratified its first constitution in 1849, it stipulated for an educational system complete with a university. Taking advantage of the Morrill Land Grant Act, the California Legislature established an Agricultural, Mining, and Mechanical Arts College in 1866. However, although this institution was provided with sufficient funds, it lacked land.
Beforehand, Congregational minister Henry Durant had established the College of California in Oakland, California in 1855. With an eye for expansion, the college's trustees purchased 160 acres (650,000 m²) of land in what is now Berkeley in 1866. But unlike the state's Agricultural, Mining, and Mechanical Arts College, it lacked the funds to operate.
The trustees offered to merge with the state college to their mutual advantage, but under one condition — that there not be simply a "Agricultural, Mining, and Mechanical Arts College," but a "a complete university." Accordingly, the Organic Act, establishing the University of California, was signed into law on March 23, 1868.
The University opened its first medical school on February 20, 1873 in San Francisco. In 1908, a "University Farm" for the College of Agriculture was established at Davis, which became UC Davis in 1959. In 1919, the Legislature arranged for an existing normal school in Los Angeles to become the University's "Southern Branch." In turn, the Southern Branch became UCLA in 1927.
The Riverside campus was founded as the Citrus Experiment Station in 1907 and was elevated to campus status in 1954. The San Diego campus was founded as a marine station in 1912 and became UC San Diego in 1959. Campuses were established in Santa Barbara in 1958, and in both Santa Cruz and Irvine in 1965.
UC Merced will open in 2005 as the first university built in the 21st century.
The University of California is exceptionally distinguished and influential within academia. UC researchers and faculty are responsible for 5,505 inventions and 2,497 patents. UC researchers create 3 new inventions per day. At 32 million items, the University of California library system contains the largest collection in the world after the Library of Congress and the British_Library.
Collectively, the system currently counts amongst its faculty (as of 2002):
The University of California is governed by the Regents of the University of California, as required by the current Constitution of the State of California. 18 regents are appointed by the governor for 12-year terms. One member is a student appointed for a one-year term. There are also 7 ex officio members — the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Speaker of the Assembly, Superintendent of Public Instruction, president and vice president of the Alumni Associations of UC, and the UC President.
The Academic Senate, made up of faculty members, is empowered by the Regents to set academic policies. In addition, the systemwide faculty chair and vice-chair sit on the Board of Regents as non-voting members.
The Regents appoint a president to run the entire system. The UC Office of the President is located in downtown Oakland and effectively serves as the system headquarters. Individual campuses are managed by chancellors, who are given a great degree of autonomy.
List of UC Presidents
- John LeConte (1868-1870, acting); Henry Durant (1870-1872)
- Daniel Coit Gilman (1872-1875)
- John LeConte (1876-1881)
- W.T. Reid (1881-1885)
- Edward S. Holden (1885-1888)
- Horace Davis (1888-1890)
- Martin Kellogg (1890-1893, acting) (1893-1899)
- Benjamin Ide Wheeler (1899-1919)
- David Prescott Barrows (1919-1923)
- William Wallace Campbell (1923-1930)
- Robert Gordon Sproul (1930-1958)
- Clark Kerr (1958-1967); Harry R. Wellman (1967, acting)
- Charles J. Hitch (1968-1975)
- David S. Saxon (1975-1983)
- David P. Gardner (1983-1992)
- Jack W. Peltason (1992-1995)
- Richard C. Atkinson (1995-2003)
- Robert C. Dynes (2003-present)
- University of California, Berkeley
- University of California, Davis
- University of California, Hastings
- University of California, Irvine
- University of California, Los Angeles
- University of California, Merced
- University of California, Riverside
- University of California, San Diego
- University of California, San Francisco
- University of California, Santa Barbara
- University of California, Santa Cruz
While the UC campuses are operated fairly efficiently, the system does have a reputation among its students and alumni for mediocre customer service. The most common symptoms are the long lines which students often must stand in to get even the simplest administrative tasks accomplished, the long wait times before phone calls are answered, and the overcomplicated paperwork that is always required for everything.
During the 1990s, some campuses (like UCLA) aggressively streamlined many internal procedures with Web applications. Others (like UC Berkeley) were slower to adapt — as of 2005, Berkeley students still enroll in classes via the aging Tele-BEARS system, which is a Web interface on top of an older touch-tone telephone system.
In turn, UC's customer service problems may have something to do with the fact that UC campuses generally lag behind comparable universities, in terms of the percentage of alumni that give back to their alma mater.
From the very beginning, the University of California has had a long tradition of involvement in many interesting enterprises that are often geographically or organizationally separate from its general campuses. For example, UC Davis began as the University Farm.
The University of California manages three national laboratories on behalf of the United States Department of Energy:
The UC's ties to the laboratories have occasionally sparked controversy and protest among the academics and students within the system, as all three laboratories have been intimately linked with the development of nuclear weapons. For example, Lawrence Berkeley Lab worked on separating uranium isotopes during World War II, and the Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore labs exclusively designed the nation's nuclear weapons until their shift into stockpile stewardship at the end of the Cold War).
The UC ties to the labs, however, have outlasted all periods of internal controversy, though recent questions about improper oversight procedures may call the relationship into question again. Recently, the Department of Energy has for the first time opened up the Los Alamos contract for bidding to other vendors besides the University of California.
The University of California manages two observatories as a multi-campus research unit headquartered at its Santa Cruz campus.
The University of California has medical schools at Davis, Irvine, Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Francisco, and each medical school has an associated teaching hospital which is owned and operated by UC. Davis's teaching hospital is located in Sacramento while the four other medical schools have their teaching hospitals on the main university campus.
All five teaching hospitals are highly regarded throughout the United States. UCLA Medical Center in particular is consistently ranked by U.S. News and World Report as the top hospital on the West Coast.
In the latter half of the 20th century, the UC hospitals became the core of full-fledged regional health systems; they were gradually supplemented by many outpatient clinics, offices, and institutes. San Diego County actually shut down its own public hospital and contracted out its healthcare responsibilities to UCSD.
For over a century, the University has operated a continuing education program for working adults and professionals. At present, UC Extension enrolls over 500,000 students each year in over 17,000 courses. One of the reasons for its huge size is that UC Extension is the dominant provider of Continuing Legal Education and Continuing Medical Education in California.
- UCLA operates both its own on-campus hotel, the UCLA Guest House, and a lavish conference center at Lake Arrowhead.
- According to the Daily Bruin campus newspaper, UCLA is so well-known in Asia that the university has licensed its trademark to 15 UCLA-branded stores across East Asia.  (http://www.dailybruin.ucla.edu/news/articles.asp?ID=32621) The stores offer East Asian consumers the ability to buy UCLA-branded apparel locally, as opposed to having to visit Southern California or shop online.
- UC Berkeley's California Alumni Association operates travel excursions for alumni (and their families) under its "BearTreks" brand. BearTreks is unusual in that the tour guides are usually Berkeley professors. CAA also operates an exclusive resort in the Sierra Nevada, the Lair of the Golden Bear, also just for Cal alumni and their families.
Other affiliated institutions
eo:Universitato de Kalifornio
no:University of California
sv:University of California