A Trip to Berkeley

Last week I had the chance to visit the campus of one of the great public universities in the country – the University of California at Berkeley. It was my first trip to the city and the campus and was a memorable one. Not only does Berkeley’s hilltop location provide an excellent view of the North Bay and the city of San Francisco and its towering bridges, but the campus was beautiful and brought me back to my college years, although I attended a much smaller university. What I will remember most, however, is a prominent display near the student union and the bookstore. It was entitled “How I Feel About Berkeley.” The display was a long wall of beautiful black and white photos featuring the faces of current Berkeley students – the classes of 2010 to 2013. Although the photos were black and white, it truly was a rainbow of color and diversity. Each student had his or her name displayed and a chance to provide a caption at the bottom of the photo. Besides English, there were comments in a multitude of languages. But these students were not from abroad. The Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Spanish, Hebrew, Portuguese, Hindi, Thai, Hmong, and other languages that these students understood and proudly displayed came from their homes. In California. You could see it in their faces; these were not foreign students. As I gazed at the faces staring back at me, each commenting on what the university meant to them or how it changed their lives, I had the distinct impression that they (including their contemporaries in all shapes and colors at the top universities in the country) are the future. These kids, not much younger than I am, were what the country must depend on and who will ultimately change the world as we know it. I was holding my daughter at the time and as we were beckoned to leave the display by my departing party, I turned to her, all of two and a half years, and whispered, “Say goodbye to the future of your country.”

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One Response

  1. I love berkeley! It is such a pretty campus! I visited it when I was a senior with my best friend who was hoping to get accepted! She ended us going to UCLA!

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