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University of California

Founded: 1868

President: Janet Napolitano (September 2013-present)


  • Ten campuses (nine undergraduate and graduate; one graduate/professional)
  • Three national laboratories (one managed directly by UC; two managed by consortium including UC)
  • Five medical centers


  • 233,198 students (183,061 undergraduate; 40,298 graduate/professional; 9,839 health sciences — 2012)
  • 16,300 faculty (FTE; 2012)
  • 133,000 staff (2012)
  • 1.7 million living alumni
  • 50,000+ living retirees

Budget: $24.1 billion (2012-13)

State funding: $2.38 billion (2012-13)

Source: 2013 Accountability Report


The University of California is the research arm of the state's three-tier public higher education system, as set forth by the California Master Plan for Higher Education. (Public higher education in California also includes the California State University and the California Community Colleges systems.) The Master Plan (adopted by the state in 1960) designates UC as the primary state-supported academic research institution. It also gives UC exclusive jurisdiction in public higher education for doctoral degrees (with the exception that CSU can award joint doctorates) and for instruction in law, medicine, dentistry and veterinary medicine. The Master Plan also established state admissions guidelines that directed UC to select its freshmen students from the top one-eighth (12.5 percent) of the high school graduating class. Qualified California community college students also are given priority in the admissions process in transferring to UC, as set out by the Master Plan.

UC's service to California and beyond is manifest in many ways. University Extension offers some 300,000 courses taken by adult learners each year, including continuing medical and legal education. Our cultural resources range from venues for performing and visual arts to gardens, aquariums and observatories, to an extensive traditional and electronic library system. UC's economic impact on California is tremendous: The university generates $46.3 billion in annual economic activity in California and is the state's third-largest employer.

Visit our History of the University page for more on UC's heritage.

Visit our Admissions page for details on the admissions process.


The following paragraph can be used in press releases and other material requiring boilerplate information about UC.

About the University of California
Founded in 1868, the University of California opened in 1869 with 10 faculty members and 38 students. Today, UC has 10 campuses: Berkeley, Davis, Irvine, Los Angeles, Merced, Riverside, San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Barbara and Santa Cruz. Also, UC has five medical centers, 16 health professional schools, six business schools, four law schools and numerous additional professional schools; plus professional and enrichment courses and agricultural and natural resources programs that extend learning throughout California. Additionally, UC manages Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and is a partner in limited liability corporations that manage Livermore and Los Alamos national laboratories. The UC system includes nearly 235,000 students, more than 190,000 employees, 50,000 retirees and 1.6 million living alumni.

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