A UC Berkeley administrator fired back at the Wall Street Journal in a letter to the editor published Saturday after the paper printed a controversial article about the financing of Memorial Stadium on April 18.
The article characterized the renovations as costly and possibly surprising considering the school “hasn’t had a powerhouse football team in years.”
The article went on to discuss the possibility of using campus funds to finance the stadium and a suggestion from the athletic department that professors not schedule midterms on the day of a football game to allow the department to take advantage of a lucrative television deal.
In his letter to the editor, Vice Chancellor of Administration and Finance John Wilton maintained that the renovations had not resulted in excessive debt and that no central campus funds have been or are planned to be used to fund the project.
The journal has since published a lengthy correction to the article on its website stating, “The University of California-Berkeley always intended to borrow most of the $474 million needed to renovate its football stadium and build an athlete-training facility. An earlier version of this article incorrectly implied that Cal was taking on more debt than originally planned. Also, in noting that Cal had raised $31 million of a proposed $270 million endowment for the stadium, the article failed to mention that the school had gained nonbinding commitments of an additional $113 million, the majority of which will be paid over 30 years.”
Curan Mehra covers higher education.
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