collage of plenary session presenters

The virtual UC Berkeley Graduate Diversity Admissions Fair returned for the second year to a broader, more diverse audience of prospective graduate students. The weeklong event, which took place October 18 – 22, 2021, supports the UC Berkeley’s Office for Graduate Diversity’s goal to significantly increase diversity recruitment and create a belonging culture where students from all backgrounds feel supported, encouraged and welcomed as they prepare to apply to graduate programs.

This year’s event attracted 3195 virtual attendees and 68 participating departments, with over 70 sessions for prospective students to attend. Departments hosted information sessions and bootcamps to provide prospective students with vital information on applying to their graduate programs, and provided opportunity for applicants to hear directly from program faculty, staff and graduate students.

On day one of the virtual fair, attendees received welcoming remarks from UC Berkeley Chancellor Carol Christ and Vice Provost Lisa García Bedolla, who emphasized how her own personal academic experience developed her deep commitment to improving diversity campus climate for all graduate students:

“Making sure that all students on this campus have the resources they need as graduate students, not just in terms of money but in terms of support, relationships, access to programming, everything they need in order to thrive,” said García Bedolla. “And I think we have made great progress over the past few years, but there’s a tremendous amount of work to be done.”

In addition to welcoming remarks, attendees heard from Denzil Streete, the Graduate Division’s Chief of Staff and Assistant Dean for Diversity, who highlighted plenary sessions that were part of the weeklong event including “Applying to Graduate School” and “Navigating your Ph.D. or Master’s Program as a Minoritized Student.”

Dr. Streete also outlined the many resources and programs available through the Office of Graduate Diversity, and encouraged prospective students to connect with one of the university’s Diversity and Community Fellows to answer many of their questions. The opening session video can be viewed here.

A new feature to this year’s event was the Student Spotlight, which exposed prospective graduate students to the research and talent of a Berkeley graduate student. First year Berkeley Ph.D. student, Tyus Williams, from the Environmental Science, Policy and Management doctoral program enthralled attendees with his research on carnivore ecology and his unique trajectory to the Ph.D. Tyus provided helpful tips to attendees on merging their passions with their research, and answered numerous questions on the graduate school application process.

For more information, including updates on future admissions opportunities within the Office for Graduate Diversity, visit and join the email list.