Cal to Delay Enrollment for Some New Students until 2023
University will adopt online learning and enroll fewer graduate students
The city of Berkeley will see approximately 2,629 fewer students than expected in the upcoming academic year after a recent court order limited student enrollment at the University of California, Berkeley.
Newly admitted first-year and transfer students, who will find out if they have been accepted to the state's flagship university by March 24, will receive letters stating their admission is for in-person or online learning this fall or in-person learning in January 2023.
The university expects approximately 4,370 California resident first-year students and 509 out-of-state students on campus for the 2022-2023 academic year. More than 1,000 newly admitted students will take online classes in the upcoming fall semester before coming to campus for the next semester.
The court-imposed enrollment limit also affects graduate students. According to a university spokesperson, the university will accept about 400 fewer graduate students than planned, primarily affecting Berkeley Engineering, Berkeley Law and the Haas School of Business.
Cal has had to get creative with its enrollment after the state Supreme Court froze enrollment at its 2020-2021 level of 42,347 students last week. The high court’s ruling results from a 2018 lawsuit filed by Save Berkeley Neighborhoods, a local activist organization that says its mission is to “make U.C. Berkeley a good neighbor.”
“By creating a tremendous housing shortage in Berkeley, the Regents have made it impossible for many students, particularly students from lower income families, to attend Berkeley,” the organization said in a prepared statement last Friday, referring to the Regents of the University of California, the governing board of the state’s university system.
The statement continued: “... the data show that Pell Grant recipients have fallen from 34% to 26%, with the housing crisis a major contributor to the decline,” referring to the federal need-based grant program for low-income students.
Save Berkeley Neighborhoods claims the University of California, Berkeley, has increased the number of students without providing sufficient housing, which it says displaces low-income residents and contributes to homelessness.
Over the weekend, the activists offered a “temporary, partial, stay of the enrollment pause” for 1,000 additional students if at least 90% of the new undergraduate students were California residents. The group also wanted the university to commit to giving up “further legal action in the courts or state legislature” to increase the total enrollment cap.
The University of California, Berkeley, declined the offer, saying elected representatives, including the California governor, the U.C. Board of Regents and the U.C. president’s office make enrollment decisions for the statewide U.C. system, not “a small group of litigants.”
“This is against everything we stand for—new pathways to success, attracting tomorrow’s leaders, making college more affordable,” California’s governor’s office said on Twitter in response to the court order last week.
The university spokesperson also shared a positive note for town-and-gown relations: The Berkeley City Council had filed court papers to support the university.
“When fewer of our children are able to pursue higher education, we all lose out,” Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguin said in a statement after the city council voted to file court papers last month.
The "offer" to allow an additional 1000 students is asinine and insulting. What authority do they even think they have to make an offer? Ridiculous NIMBYs gonna NIMBY, I suppose.
Friendly reminder that the city developed around the University, not the other way around.
The NIMBY leader living half the year in New Zealand is entirely too on-brand. '70s environmentalism is becoming the 2020s' environmental catastrophe.