For Prospective Students

Congratulations and welcome to UC Berkeley! Here’s some information to help you make the most out of your visit weekend.

On Thursday evening, the hosts will gather at a local restaurant for food and drinks to welcome you to Berkeley. This is a great opportunity to informally mingle with graduate students and your fellow prospectives. Friday will be the busiest day of your visit. Prospective students will meet with several faculty, attend a welcoming reception and research poster session, and enjoy dinner with their hosts at a faculty’s home. For a more complete agenda, see below. On Saturday, several half-day trips will be offered for those interested in attending. Typically, a hiking trip in Berkeley and tour of San Francisco are offered.


  • 8:30AM – Escort from hotel lobby to College of Chemistry
  • 9AM – Welcome Reception
  • 10AM – Meet graduate student host, attend first faculty meetings
  • 12PM – Lunch with host
  • 1PM – More faculty meetings
  • 3PM – Research poster session and coffee hour
  • 5PM – Afternoon Reception
  • 5:30PM – Leave for faculty dinners

Prospective students are typically housed in Hotel Durant. Use Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) to travel between the airport and Berkeley. If you are visiting Stanford before UC Berkeley, you will be shuttled to Hotel Durant on Friday morning.

Directions from San Francisco International Airport (SFO) to Berkeley

  1. Follow the signs in the airport to BART and purchase a BART ticket from a vending machine.  You may use cash or a debit/credit card.
  2. Board a Pittsburg/Bay Point train.
  3. Off-board at 19th St. Oakland (the station with blue bricks); walk across the platform and board the Richmond train.  This transfer is timed and your next train will be waiting for you or arriving shortly. Off-board at Downtown Berkeley.

Directions from Oakland International Airport (OAK) to Berkeley

  1. The BART system does not yet extend to the Oakland airport, so you must take a bus (AirBART) from the airport to BART. You will need separate tickets for each component.
  2. Follow the signs in the airport to AirBART (platform 3E).  You can purchase a ticket for AirBART using a machine at the bus stop that takes cash or credit.  You can also pay using exact change on the bus.  The bus will take you directly to the Coliseum/Oakland Airport BART station.
  3. Purchase a BART ticket from one of the vending machines machines in the station.  You may use cash or a debit/credit card. Board a Richmond train and off-board at Downtown Berkeley.

Weather in the Bay Area is often cool in the mornings and evenings and warm during the day, so we advise you to dress in layers. Make sure you have your ID and consider bringing an umbrella, sunscreen, and print-outs with your hotel information and transportation directions.

If you have any questions regarding your visit, please email Aileen (aileenak[at]berkeley[dot]edu).