Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California


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, 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.