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The Berkeley Connect program opens up the extraordinary resources of the university to you: the extraordinary students on our campus. By joining, you will become part of a community of like-minded faculty, mentors, and students that will provide a supportive environment in which to exchange and discuss ideas and goals. Berkeley Connect will help you to make the most of your time at the university as you learn more about the major in History. We’re excited to get to know you!

Message from the Director

Tom DandeletAt the heart of Berkeley are its undergraduates. We invite you to come and join our world-class faculty and our graduate students in lively conversation and discussions about both history and the Berkeley experience. Through Berkeley Connect in History, you will have the chance to ask the questions you’ve always wanted to ask, meet the people you’ve always wanted to meet, and join an intellectual community second to none. Along the way, you will learn some of tricks of the historical trade, explore the Berkeley campus with a dedicated mentor, and meet a fantastic group of peers. Your Berkeley won’t be the same!

Professor Tom Dandelet
Director, Berkeley Connect in History

Program Description

The only requirement for joining Berkeley Connect in History is that you have an interest in the field of study. You do not have to be a major in order to participate! Undeclared freshmen and sophomores are welcome, along with entering junior transfers and juniors and seniors who have declared the major.Every semester, Berkeley Connect sponsors a wide range of activities and events for participating students. They include:

  • small-group meetings led by your mentor;
  • one-on-one meetings with your mentor;
  • special events, including informal lectures by professors and guest speakers, and panels on career options, graduate school admissions, and other topics;
  • and visits to Berkeley resources.

At the heart of Berkeley Connect is the relationship between you and your mentor. The Berkeley Connect mentors are advanced graduate students or recent PhDs in History, who are chosen both for their demonstrated commitment to undergraduates and for their scholarly achievement. They are dedicated to providing the kind of close-knit community and one-on-one attention that can be hard to find at a large university.

When you sign up for Berkeley Connect, you will join one of several small groups of participants in History. Your small group will be led by your mentor, and will meet every other week during the semester for an hour-long dinner discussion sessions. Discussions will focus on key intellectual issues as well as key skills you need to succeed in the major. Above all, the small groups will focus on building connections among students, so that each group becomes a supportive community for all participants.

You will also meet with your mentor one-on-one at least twice during the semester, once to get acquainted, and a second time just before Tele-Bears, to discuss your plans for completing your major. Your mentor also has office hours every other week, during which you are free to show up and ask questions, talk over your day or your week, discuss what you are learning in class, or just have an informal conversation.



Tom DandeletTom Dandelet is a Professor of History at UC Berkeley, where he has taught for the past fifteen years. He also taught at Bard College and Princeton University for six years after receiving his PhD from Berkeley. His broad interests in the themes of Renaissance empire, the influence of Spain in Italy, and Renaissance Rome are reflected in his books:  The Renaissance of Empire in Early Modern Europe (Cambridge, 2104); and Spanish Rome, 1500-1700 (Yale, 2001). His current project on the Colonna family of Rome is now being written, and he is looking further south to Sicily for his future research. He is a fellow of the American Academy in Rome (2000) and was also the recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship (2007).

Berkeley Connect Mentors


Krzysztof (Chris) Odyniec Krzysztof (Chris) Odyniec recently received his PhD in History from UC Berkeley. He was born in Poland and grew up in Berkeley; he went to Cal as an undergraduate, majoring in medieval history. He was a high school teacher for years before returning to graduate school to research the history of the Spanish Empire; now he is pursuing a teaching career at the two-year community college and four-year university level. Chris has worked for Berkeley Connect in the past and is very excited to be a mentor this year in this important (and really fun) program.



Week Date & Time Meeting Place Topic
1 W: 8/23 at 6 pm All BC sections together 370 Dwinelle introduction and orientation
2 M: 8/28 at 7 pm Small group meetings in sections 3205 Dwinelle From Storyteller to Historian (Homer)
W: 8/30 at 5 & 6 pm & resources on campus
3 individually scheduled: 9/4, 9/6, 9/8 One-on-one meetings with mentor individually scheduled getting to know each other
4 M: 9/11 at 7 pm Small group meetings in sections 3205 Dwinelle Political History (Herodotus)
W: 9/13 at 5 & 6 pm & how to read in history
5 M: 9/18 at 7-8 pm Office Hours 3205 Dwinelle come and talk
W: 9/20 at 5-7 pm    (optional)
6 M: 9/25 at 7 pm Small group meetings in sections 3205 Dwinelle Archival History (Ranke)
W: 9/27 at 5 & 6 pm & how to use office hours
7 M: 10/2 at 7-8 pm Office Hours 3205 Dwinelle come and talk
W: 10/4 at 5-7 pm        (optional)
8 M: 10/9 at 7 pm Small group meetings in sections 3205 Dwinelle Social History (Braudel)
W: 10/11 at 5 & 6 pm & how to write an email to a professor
9 to be scheduled: Museum visit Berkeley Art Museum See the museum in a group
week of 10/16 – 10/20
10 M: 10/23 at 7 pm Small group meetings in sections 3205 Dwinelle Cultural and Material History (Davis) & history, popular culture and the media
W: 10/25 at 5 & 6 pm
11 individually scheduled: 10/30, 11/1, 11/2 One-on-one meetings with mentor individually scheduled discussing academic goals
12 M: 11/6 at 7-8 pm Office Hours 3205 Dwinelle come and talk
W: 11/8 at 5-7 pm        (optional)
13 M: 11/13 at 7 pm Small group meetings in sections 3205 Dwinelle The work of and possible careers for the historian: a panel discussion with graduate student guest speakers
W: 11/15 at 5 & 6 pm
14 M: 11/20 at 7-8 pm Office Hours 3205 Dwinelle come and talk
W: 11/22 at 5-7 pm        (optional)
15 M: 11/13 at 7 pm Small group meetings in sections 3205 Dwinelle Global History and the Environment
W: 11/15 at 5 & 6 pm & end of semester discussion
16 12/4 to 12/8 is Reading/Review/Recitation Week at Cal. No meeting or office hours are formally scheduled, but they are available by appointment.


To find sections in the upcoming semester, search the Schedule of Classes for History 98BC (for first-year and sophomores) or 198BC (for juniors and seniors).To help you meet other students who share your experiences and perspectives, Berkeley Connect sections are designated as lower division (first-year students and sophomores), new junior transfers, and upper division (juniors and seniors), but you can enroll in any section that fits your schedule and credit requirements.

How to Sign Up

To participate in Berkeley Connect in History, you enroll in a designated section of History 98BC or 198BC (one unit, taken on a Pass/Not Pass basis). Many students chose to enroll for more than one semester. Participation is NOT restricted to declared majors.To sign up, enroll in a Berkeley Connect section when course registration opens.  Please see the Berkeley Connect sections listed above under “Schedule.”

**Read the schedule notes carefully—different sections are designated as primarily for lower-division (freshmen and sophomores), upper-division (juniors and seniors), or junior transfer students.

If you are interested in participating in Berkeley Connect, but course registration is not currently open, you can join the Berkeley Connect Mailing List, and you will be sent more details when the next semester’s information becomes available.

Contact Us

Please see our FAQs.  If you have additional questions about Berkeley Connect in History, please contact:  Prof. Tom Dandelet, Director, Berkeley Connect in History,

You can also contact the central Berkeley Connect office  at or (510)664-4182.

Links & Resources