Richard C. Atkinson served as the University of California's seventeenth president from 1995 to 2003. The Atkinson years were a time of dramatic expansion and landmark issues for UC. Enrollments, research programs, and funding all grew rapidly to new highs. The University faced the imperative of pursuing diversity in the post-affirmative action age, created new paradigms for industry-university cooperative research, and challenged the validity of the SAT I, the nation's most widely used college entrance examination.
The speeches, lectures, and other papers gathered here document these and a variety of other issues. The principal theme of this collection is the University of California itself, and the role it plays as a public research university in a diverse, dynamic, and knowledge-based society. We hope you will enjoy this introduction to the events and challenges of the Atkinson presidency.
Opinion piece about the role of standardized testing and the SAT I.
In the aftermath of SP-1 and Proposition 209, the University of California has adopted several strategies in order to maintain access. In the long term, the university seeks to work with individual students to improve their academic preparation and to expand partnerships with the K-12 public sector. The state’s need to educate more of its minority citizens is urgent, however, so in the shorter term the University has focused on three strategies in its admissions process: comprehensive review, Eligibility in the Local Context (ELC), and the Dual Admissions Program (DAP). The paper also discusses the use of standardized tests in judging students’ readiness for university-level work, and especially changes to the SAT tests that have come about partly in response to UC policies. The paper concludes by assessing the ongoing debates over racial preferences in college admissions.
Letter to UC Academic Council chair proposing an alternative path to supplement the University’s current admissions process.
Opinion piece about UC’s efforts to boost community college-to-UC student transfers.
Opinion piece on the need for public investment in education and research.
In July 1995, the University of California