Tag Archives: UC Berkeley

Candlelit vigil tonight will honor Cal footballer Ted Agu

Cal junior Ted Agu, who died after collapsing in a workout this morning. Photo: Cal Athletics
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A candlelight service honoring Ted Agu, the Cal footballer who collapsed and died after a training session on Friday last week, will be held today from 7-8 p.m.

The vigil, which is open to the greater Cal community, will take place on Lisa and Douglas Goldman Plaza adjacent to the UC Berkeley Memorial Stadium. The ceremony will be led by Ted’s Omega Psi Phi fraternity brothers and Golden Bear student-athletes.

According to an announcement put out by UC Berkeley, Gates 3 and 5 at the stadium will open at 6 p.m., and candles and special wristbands will be available to the first 1,000 participants.

Agu, a defensive lineman from Bakersfield was a junior majoring in public health at Cal. He died after a supervised training run near Memorial Stadium.  … Continue reading »

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Magician Dynamo shoots TV show on UC Berkeley campus

Magician Dynamo (aka Steven Frayne) pulls a magic trick on a UC Berkeley student on campus yesterday. Photo: Ted Friedman
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A BBC television crew were on the UC Berkeley campus yesterday shooting an episode of Dynamo: Magician Impossible starring magician Steven Frayne.

Contributing photographer Ted Friedman checked out the action and spoke with Frayne’s manager, Dan Albion.

Cal students were invited to participate in the show when Frayne, who goes by the name Dynamo, dazzled them with his magic powers. One student, for example, pictured above, was asked to select from her three textbooks. She picked a thick biology textbook. Frayne then had her select a random page and he quoted a line correctly from the book, according to Albion.

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Berkeley staff aims to grow city’s ‘innovation ecosystem’

Polly Armstrong presents the Berkeley Chamber of Commerce's first Visionary Awards at the Skydeck. Photo: Mark Coplan/BUSD
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The city of Berkeley has, in recent years, been working to make the community a better place for technological innovation via efforts to fight “brain drain,” make it easier to find office space, and create connections among its more than 300 startups to strengthen the “fabric of the innovation ecosystem,” city staff told council members during a special session last week.

The city is among the top technological and intellectual centers in the country, due to its proximity to institutions such as the University of California at Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. But it has struggled to keep creatives based within the city limits due to the pull of Silicon Valley, limited room for businesses to grow, an antiquated business permitting process and a lack of connections among startups, said city staff last Tuesday night. Some have even described the atmosphere, previously, as “toxic.” … Continue reading »

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The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley this weekend

Nobel laureate Saul Perlmutter with an image of supernova 1987a in the background. Photo: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
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OUR SHINING STARS Astrophysics, climate change, technology, and education are all on the table at tonight’s conversation with three local and renowned scholars. Yes, this one’s in El Cerrito — 960 Avis Drive — but one of the scholars, Saul Perlmutter, is a physicist at both Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley. He’s also the recipient of a Nobel Prize, for his discovery that the universe is expanding at an accelerated rate. Amy Luers is the director of climate at the Skoll Global Threats Fund and previously headed Google’s environment program. Phillip Alvelda has founded several media and technology companies as well as an education non-profit. Plus, he’s won an Emmy. Catch all of these phenomenal speakers for free tonight from 7-9 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 16, Prospect Sierra School, 960 Avis Dr., El Cerrito. … Continue reading »

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Julia Morgan building to be moved across Berkeley

Girton Hall
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On Saturday and Sunday a beautiful, landmarked UC Berkeley-owned building will move across town, inching its way slowly from campus on a flat-bed rig up Centennial Drive to its new home at the UC Botanical Garden in Strawberry Canyon.

One part of Girton Hall, designed by famed architect and Cal alumna Julia Morgan and built in 1911, has already made the carefully executed journey. (See video footage and photos of that move.)

The complex relocation will conclude this weekend, with one large oversized section of the structure being transported on Saturday, and the other starting at around 6:00 a.m. on Sunday Jan. 12. The final piece, currently resting on Maxwell Field, will be moved around noon on Sunday.  … Continue reading »

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Improving Telegraph Ave. on new UC official’s ‘to-do’ list

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You know UC Berkeley’s newly appointed vice chancellor for real estate has an open-minded attitude when he says tackling the issues at People’s Park might be a “fun challenge” and looks forward to “getting some things done” to help revitalize Telegraph Avenue.

Robert J. Lalanne, a UC Berkeley alumnus and trustee of the university’s foundation, brings 25 years of real estate and development experience to the new position, which was formally announced Tuesday.

As founder of The Lalanne Group, he has spearheaded commercial, residential and mixed-use projects in San Francisco and other Bay Area counties. He will oversee all of Cal’s construction projects, seek “innovative financing” for new buildings, be the point man for facilities and manage 500 employees.

All for nothing a year.

Lalanne will donate his salary back to the university, according to a university press release. … Continue reading »

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Neighbors hold silent vigil for Berkeley marathon runner

Speirs
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Neighbors of a 49-year-old former UC Berkeley lecturer who died on Dec. 11 after collapsing during the city’s first half marathon on Nov. 24 last night held a silent tribute with lumanarias in the neighborhood he called home.

Kenneth Speirs was an English lecturer at Cal and had recently begun working as a full-time professor at Diablo Valley College, according to the Daily Californian.

Speirs, who had been in the hospital since suffering a heart attack while running the marathon, was also an assistant Little League coach locally. “He was a big part of what made our special 2013 team so special,” said Dave Monk who coached Albany Little League AA Red Sox team. “He was super encouraging to all of the kids on the team and was a great dad. A great man.” … Continue reading »

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Wiseman’s ‘At Berkeley’ shows a university under strain

Documentary filmmaker Frederick Wiseman. Photo: Lance Knobel
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Frederick Wiseman, interviewed by Berkeleyside this week, has been steadily making documentaries about institutions since his 1967 Titicut Follies took viewers inside a Massachusetts hospital for the criminally insane. His subjects have ranged from a high school to basic training to meatpacking plants to ballet in Paris. In the fall of 2010, Wiseman and two collaborators — a cameraman and an assistant — arrived on the UC Berkeley campus to subject the university to the same treatment.

Wiseman had written to then-Chancellor Robert Birgeneau to see if the university was receptive to the project. After lunch with Birgeneau and Provost George Breslauer, Wiseman received the go-ahead for the project. The only thing he wasn’t allowed to film was tenure discussions. Wiseman, in turn, said the university could have 48 hours after he filmed anything to request it not be included. In the event, virtually nothing was affected, according to Wiseman. … Continue reading »

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Be part of a novel bell-ringing concert at UC Berkeley

Sather Tower
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Something rather special is happening today at noon on the UC Berkeley campus. The bells of Sather Tower will ring out to the first ever participatory concert of its type at Cal.

The performance has been conceived as a novel way to communicate about climate change. And, if you show up with your cell phone, tablet or laptop and an internet connection, you will be one of those creating the musical score.

“It’s warning people about sea level changes,” said Professor Greg Niemeyer, explaining the thinking behind the event. “But it’s not a fire alarm. It’s more of a thoughtful, slower approach.” Niemeyer is professor of new media and art practice, and faculty co-director of the CITRIS Data and Democracy Initiative, and one of the key players behind the project. … Continue reading »

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Shop Talk: The ins and outs of Berkeley businesses

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SOUTH BERKELEY PRODUCE AND MEAT Nagi Homran has just opened this new grocery and meat store at 3120 Sacramento St. (at 67th) — in the space where Recycle Bicycle used to be before it closed last year. The shop specializes in Middle Eastern foods, including Halal meats. Homran said it’s his first store in Berkeley and he chose the location as he lives in the neighborhood. The shop has two storefronts, so there is a lot of space for the well-stocked shelves. Opening hours are 8 a.m to 8 p.m. Tel: 510-705-1733. (Read more on Berkeleyside about recent business activity on Sacramento Street.) … Continue reading »

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Photos: Inauguration of UC Berkeley’s chancellor Dirks

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The formal inauguration of Nicholas Dirks, UC Berkeley’s tenth chancellor, took place on the afternoon of Friday, Nov. 8. The event comprised a public symposia on the three pillars of Dirks’ administration — undergraduate education, the role of the global university, and research and innovation — a noontime rally on Sproul Plaza and an investiture ceremony.

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UC Berkeley to inaugurate Nicholas Dirks as chancellor

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Nicholas Dirks will be formally inaugurated as UC Berkeley’s tenth chancellor on Friday in a celebratory event on campus that will include a colorful procession, performances and discussions about higher education in the 21st century.

Dirks, who was formerly Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Columbia University, took up his new post five months ago, on June 1. He has already had a busy schedule, including handling an explosion which triggered a campus-wide evacuation in September, and appearing last month at Berkeleyside’s inaugural ideas festival Uncharted to talk about the fate of the humanities (as well as chopped liver and Bladerunner).

The inauguration on Friday is the formal welcome for the 61-year-old anthropology and history specialist who succeeded Robert J. Birgeneau as Cal chancellor. … Continue reading »

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Uncharted, Berkeley’s first ideas festival is 1 week away!

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The finishing touches are being applied to the program, the speakers, all world experts in their fields, are tweeting about their imminent appearance on stage in Berkeley, and the final decisions on wine pairings, music sets and lighting for the sure-to-be celebratory party at the art museum have been made. This time next week the inaugural Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas will be in full flow.

The program is bursting with entertaining and thought-provoking conversations. Here’s just a taste:

Browse the full program here; learn more about the speakers here.
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