The University of California Berkeley, or UC Berkeley, is a public research university located in the San Francisco Bay Area in Berkeley, State of California. It was founded in 1868 with the merger of the College of California, a private college, and the Agricultural Mining and Mechanical Arts College, a public institution. It has 10 major campuses in strategic locations in California, with Berkeley as the oldest and the University’s flagship campus. The Berkeley campus occupies 1,232 acres (499 hectares) of land property including a 178-acre lot for the sylvan central core, offering about 300 undergraduate and graduate programs in a variety of disciplines to more than 35,000 students.
The main campus has more than 2,000 full time and part time faculty members dispersed among more than 130 academic departments and over 80 interdisciplinary research units. Some members of the faculty, alumni, and research units are holders of 66 Nobel Prizes, 9 Wolf Prizes, 7 Fields Medals, 15 Turing Awards, 43 MacArthur Fellowships, 11 Pulitzer Prizes, and 20 Academy Awards. It also boasts of 2,217 total inventions, 569 active U.S. patents, 465 active foreign patents, and 300 active license agreements.
A founding member of the Association of American Universities, it owns the distinction of having Berkeley physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer as the scientific director of the Manhattan Project that developed the world’s first atomic bomb during World War II. It also has the Bancroft Library, one of the libraries that make up the UC Berkeley Library System, which contains the world’s largest collection of writings, photographs, letters and scrapbooks of American author and humorist Mark Twain.