2007 Archive

Universal Support for Boalt Among '07 Grads

Graduating J.D.'s and LL.M.'s accomplished across-the-board, 100% participation in the just-concluded Class of 2007 Campaign.

Last year, Boalt graduates set a school record for the campaign, achieving 97 percent participation while raising over $50,000.

As one of last year's student campaign representatives put it, "We hope to set the bar high for the upcoming class.”

The class of '07 not only cleared the bar but established a new record of participation.

"I'm still wrapping my mind around [the accomplishment],” wrote Dean Christopher Edley in an email to UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert J. Birgeneau. "It demonstrates the willingness of the [student] portion of the Boalt community to do its share to ensure the success of our strategy for leadership.”

It's doubly remarkable because current students saw their fees escalate dramatically in the past three years as state funding for the school has declined.

Organized in competitive modules of about 30 students each, leaders of each group raced one another to achieve their goal of 100% participation. As a group, LL.M.'s led the pack, achieving a commitment from all 69 visiting students back in March. Among the J.D.'s, the final gift to reach 100% was received just a few days before commencement.

All told, the campaign raised over $100,000 in pledges – including some help from an anonymous donor who ensured a six-figure campaign total contingent upon unanimous student participation. All gifts from graduating students will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the Boalt Hall Alumni Association.

As an added bonus this year, some of the student gifts will likely be eligible for matching funds through the new Challenge for Student Support program. Chancellor Birgeneau initiated this program to amplify the impact of gifts made by members of the campus community to any need-based scholarship or graduate fellowship fund.

"Many of us were motivated to give to a specific fund within the law school,” explains Sarah Angel, one of the student co-chairs. "I gave to the Herma Hill Kay Fellowship, which funds students doing legal work on behalf of women."
"We are truly proud of the class of 2007's record-setting achievement,” says Assistant Dean Louise Epstein, head of Boalt's Alumni Center. "The enthusiasm of the student leaders was contagious and their ability to convey why investing in Boalt Hall is important is truly inspirational.”

"Strong support from the graduates signals that times have changed,” says James Chavez, one of the student leaders. He put it simply: "Our support is needed for Boalt to keep being Boalt."