Arts & Humanities

Retiring University Carillonist Jeff Davis reflects on ‘the coolest job in the world’

June 10, 2024

Jeff Davis’ workspace is rare: It’s UC Berkeley’s iconic Campanile, one of the world’s tallest clock-and-bell towers and home to 20 tons of ancient fossils, a famous falcon family and its centerpiece — a 61-bell grand carillon.

But Davis’ position as university carillonist and the teaching program he’s built on campus are just as rare. Davis, who is retiring July 1 at the age of 80, is one of only six full-time paid university carillonists in North America. And...

Berkeley Letters & Science announces 2nd annual L&S Faculty Award winners

May 8, 2024

The College of Letters & Science Advisory Board has announced the recipients of the second annual L&S Faculty Awards, which recognizes and celebrates exceptional faculty in the College of Letters & Science. Awardees were selected for their exceptional scholarship, service to the College and community, and transformational teaching. These extraordinary individuals not only embody the excellence of the College of Letters & Science, but they...

L&S Commencement Highlights from 2024

May 23, 2024
Congratulations, Class of 2024!

This year's campuswide spring ceremony took place on May 11, 2024, at the California Memorial Stadium. Cynthia "Cynt" Marshall, UC Berkeley alumna and CEO of the Dallas Mavericks, delivered this year's commencement address. Despite the backdrop of chants and protests from graduates opposing the war in Gaza, the ceremony largely proceeded as planned. Within the College of Letters & Science, many departments hosted smaller, more...

“I was prepared for everything:” Highlights from Creative Careers Week in Arts & Humanities

April 23, 2024

How does a Film degree prepare you to launch a company that became a household name?

As part of Creative Careers week in the Division of Arts & Humanities, Jill Foley (Film ‘00) returned to campus on April 3 to speak with Dean Sara Guyer. Foley explained how the skills she learned at Cal have served her every step of the way: from her first post-college job with a North Bay theater company to co-founding and serving as VP of Apparel for Peloton.

Foley’s public speaking skills and ability to think on her feet — honed in small seminar classes...

Kappa Nu alums honor Larry Belling with young writers' award

April 15, 2024

When Nathanael Stephen Payne ’23 was developing Wrestle with Jimmy for UC Berkeley’s “Introduction to Playwriting” class, he had no idea where the project would take him. His answer came several years later, when he crossed the stage at graduation as one of two students to receive the Larry Belling Promising Writers’ Award.

“For the first time, I was receiving some sort of payment for my written work, validated by a long-standing institution like Berkeley,” said Payne. “I’m very fortunate to have been given the recognition at the time I did, on the...

Q&A: Viet Thanh Nguyen, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of ‘The Sympathizer,’ reflects on libraries, UC Berkeley, and the class that ‘radicalized’ him

April 12, 2024

Viet Thanh Nguyen emerged from UC Berkeley with more than a diploma.

In fact, he earned three (but who’s counting?) — dual bachelor’s degrees in English and ethnic studies in 1992, and a doctorate in English in ’97.

But his education wasn’t confined by the walls of a classroom.

Nguyen became steeped in activism, leaving Berkeley with “four misdemeanors, three diplomas, two arrests, and an abiding belief in solidarity, liberation, and the power of the people and the power of art,” he recalls in his memoir, 2023’s A Man of Two Faces.