Dean’s Desk: Adapting to Budgetary Challenges while Creating New Opportunities

While the College continues to maintain its excellent standing in a changing budgetary climate, we have implemented several initiatives focused on increasing revenue generation. One of our goals was to establish additional professional education programs to offer greater opportunities for students and provide additional funding to the College. The success of the Product Development Program—which evolved into a highly successful professional degree program with increasing enrollments each year—has paved the way for other degree programs. Our newest is the Master’s Degree in Chemical Engineering with a concentration in Bioprocess Engineering; this program was officially approved by the Graduate Council this summer. CBE is now recruiting the program director and preparing the marketing and application materials for the first cohort of students. We have more new professional degree programs in the planning phase, so stay tuned for further details.

The College has also continued to build national and international partnerships with industry and academia to promote collaborative research and graduate training programs, and to support outreach to students abroad. One newly developed venture is the Summer Youth Intensive Program, a one-week summer intensive for high school students designed to offer opportunities for scientific research in chemistry, biochemical engineering, material science and related fields to prepare them for future success in college. In addition to preparing students for studying chemical sciences, this program generates revenue, and we expect increasing enrollments as word of this exciting opportunity spreads among future scientists around the world.

We are also extremely proud to have arrived at a working model for the Berkeley Catalyst Fund, an outside venture fund that will allow us to strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem that is developing in the College and turn emerging technologies into commercial successes that will benefit the College, the campus, and society at large. Related to this effort is the formation of the Berkeley Catalyst Philanthropic Fund (BCPF), a fund created to allow donors to invest in the Berkeley Catalyst Fund while supporting the campus and receiving donor recognition at the same time. A vital component of this effort has been the degree to which the BCF/BCPF has become a driver for outreach and cultivation of our entrepreneurially minded alums.

It is with future alums in mind, and all they will contribute to improving our world, that we continue to create new opportunities for expanding education and furthering research within the College of Chemistry. Together, we will overcome the budgetary challenges we now face in ways that will strengthen and enrich the offerings of our College.

Dean, College of Chemistry
Gilbert N. Lewis Professor