UC back-to-school events include new chancellor's first speech

BERKELEY, Calif. (KGO) -- The University of California at Berkeley held three back-to-school events on Tuesday including a news briefing by the new chancellor, her first speech to students and an attempt to break a Guinness World Record.

Chancellor Carol Christ was scheduled to hold a briefing at 11 a.m. in the Club Room of Haas Pavilion to give an overview of her plans and priorities for the university, UC Berkeley officials said.

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Priorities include rebuilding a sense of belonging and community among students, enhancing the experience of undergraduates and bringing back Berkeley's legacy as the birthplace of the Free Speech Movement. And concern over free speech that brings clashes on campus.

"Outrage, concern, grief about what happened in Charlottesville. We don't want that to happen on our campus," said Christ.

UC Berkeley has already experienced similar acts of violence last February left-wing militants attacked some students who wanted to attend a speech by conservative political commentator Milo Yiannopoulos. Campus police, assisted by other law enforcement agencies were outnumbered. Lessons were learned.

Christ will try to bring back the legacy through a series of planned events, forums and debates, according to university officials.

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At 2 p.m., Christ gave her first speech to the campus's 9,500 new students.

Then at 6:30 p.m. in California Memorial Stadium, incoming students will try to break a Guinness World Record for the largest human letter.
The record is held by 4,223 community members and students at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville who formed a letter T in Neyland Stadium on March 29, according to Guinness World Record officials.

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UC Berkeley students will be gathering to form the letter C.

The school's fall semester begins Wednesday, with instruction starting on Aug. 23.

Bay City News contributed to this report.

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