Welcome to Berkeley! Please refer to the following for a quick guide in getting started.
Orientations & Meetings
Contact your sponsoring department in order to be processed for your visiting researcher scholar or visiting student researcher affiliation. They will provide you with further information regarding the initial steps, and you will be required to attend an onboarding session to be officially processed as a visiting researcher on campus. After you are processed, your department will enter you into the campus database for the purpose of securing a CalNet ID number. This usually takes at least 24 hours after your onboarding session. In addition to the onboarding process, you are encouraged to attend the VSPA Postdoc Orientation, and international scholars are required to attend the Scholar Information Meeting for visa purposes.
University Services Fee Payment
All visiting scholars and visiting student researchers must pay the University Services Fee in order to be in compliance with VSPA affiliation requirements and to gain access to university services such as library access, ID card, and a Berkeley email account. The University Services Fee is an annual fee and is not pro-rated. The fee must be paid within 3 days of the appointment start date. Please note that the fee is only valid for one year of service and if you returning from a break in service, or continuing your appointment past 1 year, you must pay a fee renewal.
Affiliates can pay the fee online by using a credit card:
Please note that a credit card or ATM debit card with a Visa, MasterCard or American Express logo on it will be needed to make a payment. You will need your non-activated Cal Net ID number (HCM Non-Employee number) to make an electronic payment. This number is available from the sponsoring department, and you should have received it after your onboarding session.
If the fee is to be paid by the sponsoring unit:
The sponsoring department will prepare an Interdepartmental Order Form with appropriate = departmental chart string, visitor's name and non-activated 9-digit Cal Net numerical identity. E-mail the completed IOF to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax it to 510.642.3328.
The sponsoring department may also use a deparmental Blu Card via our online payment form.
Please note that the $500 VSPA University Services Fee is separate from the $500 Berkeley International Office's Fee for Visa Recharge Services. For information on visa fees, please go to the Berkeley International Office’s website.
Cal 1 Photo ID & CalNet ID Activation
To obtain your Cal 1 Photo Identification Card, please go to the Cal 1 Photo Identification Program Office. They are located at 180 Cesar Chavez Center and are open from Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Bring another form of photo identification card (e.g. U.S. drivers license or passport) with you. Please also note that data downloads from Payroll/HRMS to the Cal 1 Photo Identification Program Office requires an overnight waiting period. As such, you will only be able to obtain your Cal 1 Photo ID the following business day after your department provides you have paid your University Services Fee. For more information regarding Cal 1 Photo ID cards, please contact their office at 510.643.6839 or Cal1Card@berkeley.edu.
To activate your CalNet ID, you must have your CalNet ID number from your department and your CalNet Deputy's name. CalNet Deputies can be obtained from your department or from the Cal 1 Photo Identification Program Office. A list can also be found here. You must obtain a registration token, which is a numerical code, from your CalNet Deputy, and activate your CalNet ID online here. When you enter your CalNet ID number with the registration token, you will need to create a passphrase in order to complete the activation process.
Setting Up bConnected Account
Go to the bConnected page. On the top left hand side click on “Create Account”. You will be prompted to log in with your CalNet ID and passphrase. Follow the instructions to set up your bConnected account, which gives you access to your campus email, calendar, campus contacts and document sharing tools. Finally, inform the VSPA Program at email@example.com of your new Berkeley e-mail address. As part of the registration process, you are required to report your Berkeley e-mail address.
Health Insurance Confirmation
As a visiting scholar/student researcher, you are required to have medical insurance for the duration of your appointment, either through Garnett-Powers & Associates, the insurance broker for UC Berkeley, or an alternate insurer. If your insurance meets the minimum requirements of coverage, you can choose to waive out of the health insurance UC Berkeley provides through Garnett-Powers & Associates. Otherwise, visiting scholars/student researchers must enroll in the plan through Garnett-Powers & Associates within 31 days of their appointment start date. Failure to enroll on a timely basis will prevent you from receiving benefits for the current plan year. Please refer to the Health Insurance & Benefits page for further information.