Berkeley, CA
Tuition (in-state)
$35,752 ($12,874)
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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3 College Senior

Diversity: Berkeley is home to many social movements, but I don't think the people there are very accepting of you unless you are liberal, Christian, and/or have the same opinions as them. If your opinions differ from the majority, people would lash out on you for being ignorant. Also, there is a very large population of Asians on campus (not that this is a bad thing). This, to me, sort of defeats the purpose of acceptance and diversity.

3 College Senior

Diversity: I wish there were more diversity and emphasis on that without it turning into a scapegoat for funding etc.

3 College Sophomore

Diversity: Berkeley has a lot of students of the Asian variety.

4 College Junior

Diversity: Berkeley is a diverse community, however political beliefs tend to be liberal. Also, there are plenty of Asians and Caucasians, but not a significant number of people in other ethnic groups.

4 College Junior

Diversity: At Berkeley, you will find every type of person imaginable. I have met countless people from new and unknown backgrounds. Diversity is one thing Berkeley is definitely not missing, which helps in shaping a well-rounded world-view.

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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 4th
    Most Liberal Schools
  • 213rd
    Most Open-Minded Schools
  • 1392nd
    Most Conservative Schools

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Meegan Brooks
Granite Bay, CA
Political science
View all previous student authors

While Berkeley is considered racially diverse in the sense that Caucasians are a minority, the campus is predominately Asian or white. There is a strong representation of most races, except for an underrepresentation of African American and Hispanic students. Many culturally based clubs help connect students but have also been criticized for segregating races. Outside of these groups, the racial diversity and acceptance is impressive. Cal is home to many well-traveled, curious students who want to know more about other cultures, and nobody seems to notice different skin colors.

Though it's not often appreciated, the school’s economic and social diversity enriches the campus with new perspectives. Cal is home to more Pell Grant recipients than the entire Ivy League system combined, so for a student body that is generally colorblind, this diversity plays a large role in campus life. Famous for being liberal, Berkeley is also home to a proud LGBTIQQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex, Queer, and Questioning) community, which has a large presence on campus and makes the environment feel more tolerant. Furthermore, many students try to live up Berkeley’s radical, crazy stereotype by dressing boldly, which builds the campus’s overall tolerance. It’s not unusual to see students in costume, protesting political issues, or sporting bright-colored mohawks and rainbow-striped knee socks. More than anything, Cal’s diversity is tied closely to its tolerance—there are endless backgrounds represented here, and the campus tends to embrace everyone's differences.


Facts & Statistics

African American
Native American
Historically Black College/University?
Tribal College?
Out-of-State Students
Common States of Residence
  • Foreign countries
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Texas
  • Washington
Student Age Breakdown
Under 18: 1%
18-19: 26%
20-21: 32%
22-24: 16%
25+: 25%
Female Faculty
Male Faculty
Faculty Diversity
African American: 2%
Asian American: 15%
Hispanic: 4%
International: 4%
Native American: 0%
White: 69%
Unknown: 5%
Gay Pride
The LGBT community is very active and visible on campus. The Unity House dorm option supports diverse genders and sexualities, and the Queer Resource Center hosts many events to support LGBT students. Like anywhere else in the Bay Area, it's hard to find anyone who would speak out against gay rights or lifestyles.
Political Activity
While students tend to be more liberal, most students enjoy political debate. The Berkeley College Republicans are consistently the largest student group on campus. Many students strive to continue the tradition of radicalism started by the Free Speech Movement, and it is not uncommon to watch student protests on Upper Sproul.
Economic Status
Berkeley attracts students from every economic class. While there are a lot of rich Southern California students, Cal also has a sizeable population on financial aid-UC Berkeley has more Pell Grant scholars than the entire Ivy League system.
Most Common Religions
Atheism and agnosticism are very popular, and many students are spiritual without being religious. Many students are Christian, Muslim, or Jewish. There are several Christian clubs, and Hillel is less than a block from campus.
Minority Clubs on Campus
There is high visibility and participation of minority organizations at Cal. The most active on Sproul Plaza are Asian organizations, minority business organizations, Christian and other religious groups, and ethnic volunteer organizations. The Gender Equity Resource Center is also very active, hosting classes that explore gender and events such as the Vagina Monologues.

Student Polls

How would you best describe your personal political beliefs?    Based on 159 responses

  • 4% Libertarian
  • 11% Not sure
  • 0% Very conservative
  • 5% Conservative
  • 33% Moderate
  • 31% Liberal
  • 15% Progressive/very liberal

How would you best describe the political beliefs of campus as a whole?    Based on 158 responses

  • 1% Libertarian
  • 0% Very conservative
  • 1% Conservative
  • 11% Moderate
  • 5% Not sure
  • 53% Liberal
  • 30% Progressive/very liberal

How diverse is the student body in the following areas?    Based on 160 responses

Totally homogenous
Extremely diverse
  • Economic status
  • Ethnic heritage
  • National origin (international students)
  • Political affiliation
  • Religious background
  • Sexual orientation

How diverse is your personal circle of friends in the following areas?    Based on 160 responses

Totally homogenous
Extremely diverse
  • Economic status
  • Ethnic heritage
  • National origin (international students)
  • Political affiliation
  • Religious background
  • Sexual orientation

How accepting is the campus community as a whole toward someone who falls into the minority (ethnic, sexual, or religious)?    Based on 159 responses

  • 1% It's hard to be a minority here.
  • 4% The campus is split on its acceptance-not all minority groups are as accepted as others.
  • 31% Most students are accepting, except for a few rare cases of intolerance.
  • 64% Very accepting.


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