Bank of the West has reached an agreement to become the official bank of its neighbor across San Francisco Bay, the University of California, Berkeley.

The $72.5 billion-asset Bank of the West will pay UC Berkeley $17 million over 10 years as part of the deal. The proceeds will be used for academic scholarships, to fund internships and on-campus personal finance education and to provide support for programs like the UC Berkeley Food Pantry Fund, which provides food assistance to in-need students.

Bank of the West, a unit of France's BNP Paribas, will provide UC Berkeley students with checking accounts that don't carry monthly service charges. Bank of the West will give special offers to faculty and staff, including discounted rates on loans, bonuses on money market and CDs, and credits for closing costs on mortgages.

Additionally, Bank of the West will also open seven ATMs on campus and a branch in the student union.

Bank of the West has been a partner with UC Berkeley's athletic program since 1997, but its new sponsorship deal was granted after a competitive request for proposals, the bank said.

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