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Berkeley’s building Around campus, there’s an old joke

Built in the 1920s, Bowles sits on a hill

that the “UC” in UC Berkeley stands

near Memorial Stadium and boasts

for “under construction.” And for good

Gothic arches and a square turret. After

reason — more often than not, a crane

a $40 million renovation project, it

or construction workers can be seen

has now reopened as a residential

somewhere at Cal, a testament to the

college for undergrads, plus three

university’s endless efforts to expand and

graduate students and two professors —

upgrade its facilities.

a housemaster and a dean.

With several projects nearing completion, Original donor Mary Bowles envisioned The Promise of Berkeley takes a look at

the hall as more than “a mere boarding

three new — or newly refurbished —

house where men would eat and sleep but

spots on campus that enhance the visitor

... a home.” That vision faded over the

and student experience.

years — by the mid-1970s, key features such as student governance had ended,

Cal’s answer to Hogwarts

and on-site dining left in 2000. “When they told us in 2005 that it had become a freshmen-only dorm,” says former resident Bob Sayles ’52, “we just

This fall, nearly 200 Berkeley

couldn’t square it with our remembrance undergraduates moved into the renovated of what the Bowles experience once Bowles Hall (pictured below), which was.” Sayles and fellow Bowles alumni bears more than a passing resemblance

spearheaded the push to revive it as a

to residential colleges at Cambridge and

residential college.

Oxford — with a touch of Hogwarts from Harry Potter for good measure.


The Promise of Berkeley


Fall 2016

Promise of Berkeley Fall 2016  

Promise of Berkeley Fall 2016 magazine UC BERKELEY