Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging in the Biological Sciences Division

The Division of Biological Sciences at UC Berkeley is at the forefront of a critical moment in the life sciences. Our climate of rigorous and creative cross-disciplinary exchange sets the stage for critical advances, groundbreaking discovery, and opportunity for our students and faculty to thrive in their chosen fields. We affirm and uphold our campus principles of community and recognize the intrinsic relationship between diversity and excellence in all of our endeavors. As scholars and scientists, we know the critical value of multiple perspectives. As members of the Biological Sciences community, we see that we each have an important role to play in respecting and valuing difference, in creating an inclusive, equitable environment, and in fostering true belonging.

Current activities include programs and initiatives at multiple levels to foster the next generation of leaders in biology and build a more inclusive scientific community where everyone shares a sense of belonging. Our division attracts exceptional scholars and is known for producing leaders in industry and academia and is actively committed to advancing diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging in all areas and we strive to remove historical and systematic barriers to access and success. Recruitment alone won’t solve the problem — our division understands the urgent need to cultivate an environment in which all students are set up to succeed and top talent is encouraged to remain in academia.

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Undergraduate Programs

  • STEM Excellence through Equity & Diversity (SEED) Scholars program provides a diverse, holistic network that prepares outstanding undergraduates to become change-makers, scholars, and leaders in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). 

  • Biology Scholars Program challenges assumptions about who can and should do science. Its student members successfully bridge their passion for science with their unique identities and experiences to give back to their communities. 

  • The Amgen Scholars Programis a national program to increase research opportunities for students committed to pursuing careers in the sciences. 

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Graduate Programs

  • Biological Sciences Graduate Diversity Office.
  • The iBiological Sciences (“Inclusive” Biological Sciences) supports diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging efforts across our division.
  • The iMCB aspires to cultivate an environment where our most vulnerable students feel inspired to bring their most authentic selves to their scientific microcosms.

Our departments work towards equity and diversity plans in each of their areas. Please see the following for more information on Integrative Biology or MCB

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Funded by the UCOP AFD Initiative, the Advancing Faculty Diversity and Institutional Change through Inclusive Faculty Mentorship (IFM) is a three-year pilot program to improve the mentorship experience for both mentees and mentors through institutional level interventions grounded in research.

The Future of Biology 2 Steering Committee aims to provide cohesive, coherent, and collaborative integration of EDI (Equity, Diversity & Inclusion) principles into our pursuit of excellence in teaching, training and research across the Life Sciences at Berkeley. 

The Departments of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, Nutritional Sciences and Toxicology, Plant and Microbial Biology, Integrative Biology, Molecular and Cell Biology, and Chemistry with the enthusiastic support of the campus have developed a unique cross-divisional collaboration to advance faculty diversity, equity and inclusion in the life sciences.


Biological Sciences Staff

tyrone B. Hayes, Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, tyrone@berkeley.edu

John Matsui, Assistant Dean, Biological Sciences and Director, Biology Scholars Program, matsui@berkeley.edu

Audrey Knowlton, Biological Sciences Diversity Director, knowlton@berkeley.edu

Halima O'Neil, Diversity Programs Officer, halima.oneil@berkeley.edu