President's Monthly Campus Update
- September 30, 2008
- Vol. 3, No. 9
It has been a difficult year economically for the citizens of our state and our nation. As a confluence of events has contributed to a strained national economy, our state has endured the longest budget impasse in California history. The 2008-09 budget signed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on September 23rd funds the CSU at $2.97 billion from the state general fund and $1.5 billion from student fees. While this funding level leaves the CSU with a $215 million shortfall, we were successful in restoring $97.6 million in cuts set forth in the Governor's January budget proposal. This restoration can be directly attributed to the collaborative work of faculty, staff, students, and administrators in the Alliance for the CSU, who sent a strong message to legislators that the CSU is part of the solution to our state's troubled economy.
I applaud the work of our campus Alliance coordinators, Jacqueline Hughes, chapter president of the California Faculty Association; Ray Finnell, chapter president of the California State University Employee's Union (CSUEU); Patrick Choi, union representative for the Academic Professionals of California (APC); Kelly Sawyer, union representative for the State Employees Trades Council (SETC) representative; Darren Chaney, Statewide University Police Association (SUPA) representative; Jess Deegan, Chair of the Academic Senate; and Jackie Teepen of the California Faculty Association. I equally laud the work of our faculty, staff, and students who attended and spoke at meetings, called and wrote letters to legislators and newspaper editors, signed commitment cards, and made the case for the CSU. Our concerted effort made the difference.
Science III Building Dedication
On July 11, 2006, we broke ground on a long-awaited and much-needed science building. On September 25, 2008, city officials, corporate, community, and educational partners joined CSUB faculty, staff, and students on the campus green to celebrate the formal dedication of Science III. The first science building to be constructed on campus in 30 years, the three-story, 54,000 square foot building offers fifteen laboratories, seven classrooms, and seventy faculty offices. Its energy-efficient design is constructed to Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver standard equivalence as rated by the U.S. Green Building Council.
Science III houses the full departments of mathematics and computer science, and a portion of the physics/geology and nursing faculty. The new building is an important addition to the School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics and to the university, serving about 2,000 students each quarter who have unique opportunities to engage in research in all the disciplines offered in the school. In the 2007-08 academic year, fifty tenure-track faculty members and their students produced more than sixty publications. This publication record is exceptionally high in comparison to similar schools on the other twenty-two CSU campuses and is on par with many Ph.D.-granting universities. Almost every publication is co-authored with contributing undergraduate and graduate students.
Each of the various science disciplines is engaged in vibrant and growing areas of study. The mathematics program, in collaboration with the School of Education, has created a program that will allow students to complete a baccalaureate degree and a teaching credential in mathematics in four years. This will be the first such four-year program in the CSU system and will serve as a model to other campuses for increasing the pool of highly qualified math teachers. The computer science program produces graduates who are highly sought after by many employers in our community. The future addition of computer engineering will enable us to further respond to the engineering needs of our region.
The nursing program is providing much-needed nurses to fill dire shortages in our local health institutions, and the research conducted by nursing faculty is advancing knowledge and promoting best practices in health care. This year, the physics program has the largest number of physics majors since its inception. Geology is directly involved with our local energy industries and produces outstanding graduates. The chemistry and biology disciplines are preparing exceptional students for professional careers and graduate work. Biology faculty are engaged in such important work as sponsoring the Facility for Animal Care and Treatment (FACT) and studying the effect of fires on shrubs in water stress regions like our own.
The construction of the Science III building was funded through state general obligation bonds for CSU capital projects. State funding, however, did not provide the support necessary to equip the laboratories and classrooms. Purchase of equipment and supplies was made possible by the generous support of individuals and corporations who partnered with us for excellence. Chevron provided a $1 million gift to support our mathematics and science initiative which focuses on preparing students to succeed in math and science, and preparing middle and high school teachers to teach math and science. Additional technology and innovative programs for students and faculty were made possible by gifts totaling $800,000 from State Farm, Wells Fargo Bank, Oxy of Elk Hills, Aera Energy, Work Force Staffing, Ben H. and Gladys Arkelian Foundation, Ben and Gayle Batey, Plains Exploration & Production Company, and Harry and Ethel West Foundation.
We congratulate and thank Mike Neal, Vice President for Business and Administrative Services, for shepherding the construction project through the CSU approval process; Pat Jacobs, Assistant Vice President of Facilities Management, for overseeing construction; and Beverly Byl, Vice President for University Advancement, and the University Advancement Staff for their work in securing these gifts.
Hispanic Heritage Month
The thirty days from September 15th to October 15th denote the celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month. The recognition begins in mid-September to encompass the commemoration of the independence of Mexico, several Latin American countries, and Chile, as well as the Dia de la Raza celebration. The national theme for the month-long celebration is "Getting Involved: Our Families, Our Community, Our Nation." At CSUB, we enjoy a richly diverse student population of which 35.5% are of Hispanic heritage. Eleven percent of our faculty members are of Hispanic heritage. I invite you to engage in cultural events scheduled in the community and on campus, including visiting the Todd Madigan Gallery on October 2nd for the opening reception of "Arte de la Gente, an Exhibit of Mexican Masters from the Dr. Richard and Rebecca Zapanta Collection." For more information, please visit the Todd Madigan Gallery website at http://www.csub.edu/art/gallery/present.html.
New CSUB Foundation Board Members
Three new members join the CSUB Foundation Board of Directors. We welcome to the Board Bruce Johnson, Vice President of Chevron San Joaquin Valley Business Unit; Gaurdie Banister, President and CEO of Aera Energy; and Jon Van Boening, President and CEO of Memorial Hospital. Each will serve three-year terms. Rogers Brandon, President of American General Media, is Chairman of the Board. Geoff King, partner at Barber, Longcrier, Hooper & King, is Vice Chairman. As Vice President for University Advancement, Beverly Byl serves as Executive Director of the CSUB Foundation.
Administrative Changes and New Appointments
The following administrative changes and new appointments took effect at the beginning of fall quarter:
Dr. Marla Iyasere and Dr. Curt Guaglianone are stepping down from their positions as deans. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Dr. Iyasere for serving in the capacity of Founding Dean for the School of Humanities and Social Sciences since February 2001, and Dr. Guaglianone for his four years of service as Dean of the School of Education. Both have made enormous contributions to our university and shown tremendous commitment to our students and their successes.
Dr. Iyasere and Dr. Guaglianone have accepted positions as Special Assistants to the Provost, and will undertake projects that are critical to advancing CSUB. Dr. Iyasere will be involved in increasing our visibility and outreach to the community in order to improve the college-attendance rates. Dr. Guaglianone will work on extending professional development opportunities for teachers within Kern County and Antelope Valley. Each brings years of experience that will serve the university well in their new roles.
Dr. Craig Kelsey has been appointed as interim dean of the School of Education while continuing in his role as Dean of Extended University. Dr. Kelsey was appointed Dean of Extended University in June 2006. He received his Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of New Mexico in 1977. He also attended the University of Utah, and the University of Maryland. He served as a faculty member in the College of Education at the University of South Dakota, and as department head in the College of Education and Human Services at Utah State University. For five years he was the associate dean of the College of Education at the University of New Mexico. He has published a number of textbooks, more than 40 articles, and 20 conference proceedings. His scholarship interests are in urban planning specifically related to parks, recreation, and open space systems.
Dr. Edwin Sasaki has been appointed as interim dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. Dr. Sasaki has been at CSUB for 34 years, arriving two years after the university was established with a PhD in Psychology from Stanford University. He joined the Department of Psychology and rose through the ranks to become a full professor in 1978. Over the years, Dr. Sasaki has served in important roles at critical times for the University. He has directed numerous projects and programs and previously served as the interim Dean for the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. He entered the FERP program in 2006 and serves as the Special Assistant to the Provost for Planning. In commencement ceremonies on the occasion of his retirement, I awarded him the President's Medal for his long years of superb service and unyielding commitment to the mission of CSUB.
Please join Provost Coley and me in congratulating Drs. Kelsey and Sasaki for their willingness to serve in these important interim roles. National searches will be initiated during the next few weeks to recruit candidates for the permanent dean appointments.
Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) Student
Four CSUB students will travel to Denver, Colorado in October as CSUB Student Ambassadors to the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) annual conference. Undergraduate liberal studies majors Erica Madrigal and Ruth Leon, and criminal justice major Daniel Bravo will be joined by Laura Falcon, a graduate student in the Public Policy and Administration master's program. They are among 40 California students who will join a national student delegation whose travel and conference attendance is sponsored by HACU. All will attend leadership forums, research, internship, and graduate school seminars, and will have the opportunity to network with other students from across the country.
HACU is a national organization of more than 450 colleges, universities, and higher education systems whose total student enrollment is at least 25% Hispanic. HACU was instrumental in lobbying Congress to recognize and appropriate funding to institutions of higher education with high Hispanic enrollments. As a result, the Department of Education recognizes colleges and universities with an undergraduate enrollment that is at least 25% Hispanic as Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) under Title V of the Higher Education Act. Our status as an Hispanic-Serving Institution not only gives us access to funding opportunities to support educational excellence which will serve all students, but also positions us as a leader in addressing policies and issues that affect the changing demographics of our region and state.
I congratulate these students on their selection as student ambassadors and thank Dr. Thomas Martinez, Department Chair and Professor of Public Policy Administration, Dr. Maria Escobedo, Director of the College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP) and Interim Director of the Title V Program, Dr. Shelley Ruelas, Vice President for Student Affairs, and Evelyn Coyle, Executive Assistant to the President, for their collaboration in the student ambassador selection process. For information on HACU internships, educational and career tracks, and HACU initiatives, please visit www.hacu.net.
William Randolph Hearst /CSU Trustees' Award
Psychology graduate student Jared Chapman has been selected as a recipient for the 2008-09 William Randolph Hearst/CSU Trustees' Award for Outstanding Achievement. The recognition comes with a $3,000 scholarship for the achievement superior academic performance in the face of significant personal challenges. Despite becoming homeless at age 16 and engaging in at-risk youthful behavior, Jared course-corrected and enrolled at Bakersfield College. Upon graduation, he transferred to CSUB where he discovered a passion for research in social psychology. A McNair scholar, he graduated magna cum laude in psychology and religious studies, and currently is completing his master's program in psychology. I applaud Jared for his perseverance and commitment to academic excellence.
The first University Council meeting of the academic year is scheduled for October 17, 2008 from 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. in the Albertson Room.
I look forward to seeing you around campus or at an upcoming University or community event.