Berkeley's got 'beef' with the budget cuts

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MARCH 06, 2013

Just one look at the front page of The Daily Californian, and it is not hard to see the economic problems that UC Berkeley and other public universities are going through, especially in light of the recent sequester. When the Clog came across an article detailing that many universities in the U.S. have started to sell cattle and produce from their agricultural departments in a bid to reduce some of the impact of budget cuts, we began to wonder: Why can’t our campus do that? Maybe the Clog can offer a bit of advice to students in these tough economic times — let’s take on the entrepreneurial spirit on campus and start making some money!

Instead of privatization, which so many students are opposed to, let Berkeley use all its unused land to make some money and help students out with tuition.

Of course we don’t have any farms to grow veggies or fields for cattle to graze on … or do we? Think about this: Instead of Memorial Glade being the site of all those lazy students sunbathing or playing ultimate frisbee, it could become the newest stockyard next to one of the oldest libraries in the state. The custodians will surely enjoy having goats and sheep around to help clean up all the litter on campus.

And while we are remodeling the Cesar Chavez Center and MLK Student Union buildings, let’s rip out the cement in Lower Sproul and use that land for a sustainable student farm. There is a reason California avocados are called green-gold!

Of course this may inflame relations between the vegans and meat-eaters of campus even more, but hey — that’s what the department of peace and conflict studies is for … right?

The Clog recognizes that most students may not be ready to get their hands dirty just yet, so why not institute a mandatory 4-H-style lab for all incoming freshmen? It’s one thing to read “Animal Farm” — it’s another to work on one.

The first market we could advertise to would be our alumni and local foodies. The school can sell a lot of stuffed Oskis, but getting people to eat like Oski will make money day after day.

Obviously this isn’t a very realistic option, but in all seriousness, what we’re trying to say is that any steps that the school and students can take together to soften the blow of budget cuts will go a long way in the end. So get thinking, Berkeley.

Image source: tcd123usa under Creative Commons 

Contact Chase Schweitzer at 


MARCH 05, 2013

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