DEIJB Framework

Vision & Values: 

Berkeley Discovery aims to assist all of our Berkeley undergraduates with accessing the most high-impact forms of experiential learning opportunities outside the classroom - research apprenticeships, summer internships, community leadership, entrepreneurialism, and more. These experiences help make real the promise of social mobility for our graduates. For this reason, we believe it is imperative that discovery experiences be made available to first- generation and historically underrepresented students, and not remain solely the province of students with traditional forms of legacy and privilege. From this perspective, Berkeley Discovery was launched to address one important front in the broader campus effort to build equity of student experience.

Primary Projects & Equity Strategies: 

Berkeley Discovery has organized two big campus projects, each based on a specific equity strategy: 

  • Berkeley Discover Curricular Innovation Grants - We have a vision that all majors on campus should include high-impact discovery experiences. Toward this aim, in 2020 we launched a Departmental Innovation Award Program providing funding and guidance to departments for a multi-year process of refining their vision and implementation plan for Discovery at Scale.

    • Equity Strategy: When discovery experiences are built into the required coursework for a given major, this ensures that all students in that major have access to this experience. Our aim is for  the innovative practices developed by grant recipients to gradually be taken up by additional departments. 
  • Discovery Hub student support center: The Discovery Hub consists of a suite of online and in-person resources to assist students in all dimensions of discovery projects, from finding opportunities, to finding mentors and collaborators, to developing a creative sense of purpose and belonging at UC Berkeley. 

    • Equity Strategy: Discovery opportunities need to be public and transparent, and strategies for successfully accessing these transformative experiences need to be intentionally taught. This kind of essential information must no longer be only privy to a portion of our student body. 

Additional Discovery Equity Efforts:

  • The Discovery Advising & Student Services Staff Council created a range of resources to support staff with discovery advising including resources specifically for URM, first-gen, and transfer students
  • Discovery Database Equity Advisor: We’ve created a staff fellowship Equity Outreach Adviser. The role combines a passion for equity, a deep care for individuals, and experiences as a recent Berkeley graduate to help students bridge the gap between their present self and their dreams by connecting them with resources offered in the pilot database.

  • Partnerships with CE3: For the past two years, the Discovery Advising & Student Services Staff Council has worked with the Transfer Center to integrate discovery themes into their popular Transition to Cal course. In complement to this, the Discovery Hub offered a spring 2023 workshop series focused on supporting transfer students.  

  • Discovery Orientation in Golden Bear Advising: GBA is required for all new students before they begin Berkeley. As of fall 2023, all students will receive a significant introduction to the idea of discovery and the resources available for students to start planning their journey. 

  • Creative Discovery Internship Stipends and Course Support - This pilot builds a model for supporting students to pursue high impact immersive experiences. The program provides undergraduate students stipends for internships in creative fields and is dovetailed with a professional development cohort to reflect on and make the most of their internship experience.

In the 2020 UCUES survey, students were asked about barriers to engaging in discovery experiences. Discovery aims to reduce these barriers. 

"I encourage students to get involved in something that drives them, gives them purpose, and allows them to make an impact, not only on their own development but others as well. Discovery projects such as research, internships, service learning, student government, or performance, are examples of activities that develop skills that can lead to success in opportunities beyond Cal."

- Alicia Hayes, National Scholarships Manager and Advisor, UC Berkeley 

Alicia Hayes advisor

These student profiles were featured in our campus-wide Discovery banner project.