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History of the J-School

May 2018

Dean Edward Wasserman's term as dean extended 5 years.

January 2013
Edward Wasserman becomes the sixth dean of Berkeley Journalism

Edward Wasserman becomes the School’s sixth Dean. A journalist and authority on ethics, evolution and ownership of news media, Wasserman was for the previous decade the John S. and James L. Knight Professor of Journalism Ethics at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Va. Read his full bio.

September 2008
The hyperlocals are born

As the centerpiece of its J200 curriculum, Dean Neil Henry (2007-2011) launches three hyperlocal news sites: Richmond Confidential, Oakland North, and Mission Local (which is now independent of the J‑School). The sites provide a platform for first-year students to develop daily news reporting skills, and they provide a valuable service to communities underserved by traditional media.

2007

First Logan Symposium in Investigative Reporting

Since 2007, the U.C. Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism’s Investigative Reporting Program has hosted a “by invitation only” symposium each spring in honor of the Reva and David Logan Foundation, which endowed the program. The only symposium of its kind in the country, it routinely brings together a veritable “who’s who” of top journalists, law enforcement and government officials to address the critical issues confronting this specialized field. The symposium also unites media executives involved in both non-profit and commercial outlets, as well as media attorneys, academics, major foundations, and philanthropists who support journalism in the public interest.

2006
Investigative Reporting Program established

Award-winning investigative reporter Lowell Bergman establishes the Investigative Reporting Program, the first non-profit newsroom established at a university. Evolving from a single seminar, the IRP now encompasses a nonprofit newsroom, a seminar for undergraduate reporters and a post-graduate fellowship program, among other initiatives. Through its various projects, students have opportunities to gain mentorship and practical experience in breaking major stories for some of the nation’s foremost print and broadcast outlets from PBS Frontline to the New York Times.

July 1993
A wave of renovation

Dean Tom Goldstein (1988-1996) encourages a wave of renovation through a gift from Nan Tucker McEvoy and others. The new television and radio labs house some of the most advanced broadcast equipment available and allow live broadcasts from North Gate Hall.

1981
Journalism at North Gate Hall

In July 1981 the Graduate School of Journalism moves into North Gate Hall, several months after a national accreditation team had called the young department "the best journalism school in the country," blighted only by inadequate housing.

1979
North Gate becomes a historical landmark

North Gate Hall is approved for listing on the National Register of Historic Places and as a California State Landmark.

1968
Undergraduate major in journalism discontinued and professional school established

The undergraduate major in journalism is discontinued as of 1968. However, both undergraduate and graduate journalism courses continue to be offered. An emphasis is placed on the development of the graduate professional program, using a newly revised Master's degree curriculum as a base.

1951
Master's program in journalism launched

In addition to the lower and upper division courses preparing for the major, 10 graduate courses are offered in the 1951-52 academic year. Seventy-eight individuals receive a Master of Journalism degree in the next seven years.

1937
UC Berkeley introduces journalism as an undergraduate major

Formal journalism instruction begins at Berkeley through the English Department, and an undergraduate major is established in 1941.

April 1905
Building the Ark

Known to generations of architecture students as the "Ark," North Gate Hall is built to house the recently established Department of Architecture. The first department head and supervising campus architect, *John Galen Howard, designs the new building, which becomes the department’s home for the next five decades. The original building covers 1,800 square feet and costs $4,393.59.

*John Galen Howard designed some of the most extraordinary buildings on the UC Berkeley campus, from the Hearst Mining Building, to the Campanile to the Greek Theatre.