The Department of Statistics at UC Berkeley was founded by Jerzy Neyman (1894-1981). Neyman is considered to be, with R.A Fisher, one of the two founders of modern statistics. We present below an account of the early years of the department - from Neyman's arrival in Berkeley in 1938 to the foundation of the department in 1955 - written by Terry Speed, Jim Pitman and John Rice. This is an extract from a longer paper about the history of the department by these three authors which you can find at the bottom of the page.
In 1938, at the age of 44, Jerzy Neyman left the Department of Applied Statistics at University College, London and arrived in Berkeley to take up a position as Professor of Mathematics. His status as a leading scholar of his generation was firmly established by his paradigm-setting work in areas including hypothesis testing, confidence intervals, and sampling design. Shortly after Neymans arrival, he founded the Statistical Laboratory (Stat Lab), and this was to be the center of Statistics at Berkeley until the creation of a separate Department of Statistics in 1955, and the center of his activities until his death in 1981.
Historically, upon admittance to the professional MA program, most students have been given a modest sum of financial aid from the department. Students are notified of this aid in their admissions letter. The remaining expenses are typically covered through a combination of student loans, private funds, and employer support (for those who are already in careers).