President's Monthly Campus Update

As we approach the end of Spring quarter and our commencement ceremonies draw near, I extend my personal congratulations to our graduating seniors. In this issue of the Update, I take particular pride in highlighting a few of our students whose graduate school acceptances and entry into professional careers demonstrate the quality of the education they received at CSUB. I also highlight some of the excellent research that is being conducted by our faculty and students. As you review these accomplishments, I am sure you will agree with our faculty member who describes the CSUB experience as "an Ivy League education at a CSU price." Congratulations to all of our graduates.

The commencement schedule for our four schools in order of occurrence is as follows:

Education Friday, June 8, 2007 10:00 am Icardo Center
Business & Public Administration Friday, June 8, 2007 2:00 pm Icardo Center
Humanities & Social Science Saturday, June 9, 2007 7:15 am Amphitheatre
Natural Sciences & Mathematics Saturday, June 9, 2007 1:00 pm Icardo Center

We will be joined by Trustee Craig Smith at the commencement exercises for the School of Business and Public Administration on June 8th and by Trustee Carol Chandler on June 9th for the Schools of Humanities and Social Sciences and Natural Sciences and Mathematics. For further information and instructions regarding commencement ceremonies, please visit our website at or telephone Sandra Renfro at 654-6122.

Student Recreation Center Groundbreaking Ceremonies
Associated Students, Inc. President Kenneth Beurmann and I invite you to attend the groundbreaking ceremonies for the Student Recreation Center on Thursday, May 31st at 10:30 am at the construction site, just south of the Student Union. Designed to enhance the student experience and increase student engagement on campus, amenities in the 60,000-square-foot center include a fitness area with equipment, indoor track, and rock-climbing wall. The facility will be available only to students, faculty, staff, and alumni of CSUB. The Recreation Center is being funded through the student fee referendum passed by students in May 2005. That fee pays for the use of the facility for students. In addition, the fee supports the move of our Athletics program to NCAA Division I, provides additional support for CSUB clubs and organizations on the main campus, and funding for student programs and activities at the Antelope Valley Center. Faculty, staff and alumni wishing to use the facility will pay a membership fee. The center will employ students, and a student advisory board will oversee operations. Occupancy is anticipated in the summer of 2008.

Approval for Bakersfield Adventures for the Mind
At its meeting on Wednesday, May 16th, the CSU Board of Trustees gave conceptual approval for the Bakersfield Adventures for the Mind (BAM) children's museum. The project is a 35,000 square foot hands-on, interactive learning center for children 12 and under. Possibilities for exhibits include science and space exploration, the human body, energy, and agriculture. The BAM advisory board now will undertake a capital campaign to raise the $15 million needed to fund the project. This is the third public-private project to be approved by the Board of Trustees for development along the southern border of CSUB. For more information regarding the BAM project, please contact Jillian Fritch-Stump at 327-KIDS.

CSU May Advocacy Day
On Wednesday, May 23rd, Vice President for University Advancement Mike Chertok, Vice President for Business and Administrative Services Mike Neal and I traveled to Sacramento to participate in the annual CSU May Advocacy Day. The event occurs after the Governor's May revision of the state budget and is intended to gain the support of legislators for the CSU Board of Trustees' budget and legislative agenda for the 2007 legislative session. Specifically, the CSU is requesting $3.6 million to increase undergraduate nursing enrollment; the restoration of $7 million in Student Outreach and Academic Preparation programs; augmentation of $46 million to fund over enrollment of 6,300 students (FTES); and $41 million to cover the cost of faculty and staff compensation and health benefits as provided for in union contracts. Later in the afternoon on Wednesday, subcommittees took action on the budget and restored the $7 million in Outreach and Academic Preparation and retained the $3.6 million for nursing programs.

The CSU advocates were seeking support also for Assembly Bill 302 (De la Torre) that would increase the funding for Cal Grant B-eligible freshmen to make the awards the same as Cal Grant A awards for freshmen. In the coming weeks, the Budget Conference Committee, the Governor, and legislative leadership will develop a final budget with a constitutional deadline of June 15th.

Associated Students, Inc. Officers for 2007-2008
I congratulate the newly elected officers of Associated Students, Inc. (ASI) on their successful campaigns. The incoming president is Elena Avila, a senior who is double-majoring in business administration and computer science, with a double concentration in management and management information systems. The executive vice president is Valerie Poyner, a junior math major. Wendy Martinez, a junior criminal justice major, is the newly-elected vice president for programming. Adriana Sandoval, incoming vice president of finance, is a senior criminal justice major with a minor in political science. We look forward to a dynamic year with this slate of ASI officers.

Faculty Accolades
Dean of Libraries, Rod Hersberger, has been elected treasurer of the American Library Association (ALA) for a three-year term beginning in July 2007. The 67,000-member ALA is the world's largest library association, and the treasurer is the second highest elected position. As treasurer, Rod also will be a member of ALA's Executive Board and Executive Committee. Rod has directed the Walter Stiern Library since 1984 and helped in its planning and design. He holds a bachelor of science degree in accounting, a master's degree in business administration, and a master of library science degree. Congratulations, Rod.

Faculty and Student Research
Please join me in congratulating Dr. Wei Li and undergraduate student Joseph Sutton of the Department of Computer Science for the following two papers: (1) Optimization of Source Identification Algorithm Derived from Moth-Inspired Plume Tracing Strategies by Dr. Li and Joseph Sutton; and (2) An Iterative Fuzzy Segmentation Algorithm for Recognizing an Odor Source in Near Shore Ocean Environments by Dr. Li. The papers were accepted as Contributed Papers for presentation at the 2007 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) International Symposium on Computational Intelligence in Robotics and Automation (CIRA) to be held June 20-23, 2007, in Jacksonville, Florida. They will be published in the CIRA07 Proceedings. Dr. Li has been invited to serve as the chair of the Mobile Robotics II session and he is also a member of the editorial board of the International Journal of Intelligent Systems Technologies and Applications. Joseph Sutton is the 2007 Outstanding Student of the Department of Computer Science. We are proud of the achievements of our NSM colleagues.

Applause goes to Drs. Dirk Baron and Rob Negrini, Physics and Geology Department, and geology graduate alumna Liz Golob for their most recent article, with collaborators from the US Geological Survey, UC Santa Barbara, and Chevron, entitled: Geochemical correlation and 40Ar/39Ar dating of the Kern River Ash and related tephra: Implications for the stratigraphy of petroleum-bearing formations in the San Joaquin Valley, California. This article was accepted for publication in the journal Quaternary International.

Dr. David Germano, Department of Biology, is applauded for his recent article Ontogenetic and seasonal changes in coloration of the blunt-nosed leopard lizard (Gambelia sila), published in The Southwestern Naturalist 52:46-53 in March of 2007. This lizard is a local endangered species which can be found only in the San Joaquin Valley and an adjacent small valley to the southwest. Congratulations, Dr. Germano.

Chevron's gift of $1 million to support our science and mathematics initiative will fund several programs this summer. So far, eighteen (18) high school teachers and forty (40) high school students will participate in nine available projects in biology, chemistry, geology and physics. Additionally, Dr. Ron Hughes, School of Education, will offer a NASA workshop at the end of June. The Mathematics Department will participate by offering the Math 251-254 sequence to be taken by local math teachers receiving support from the gift. These first-year activities funded by the three-year Chevron gift are outstanding. We congratulate the faculty involved for their efforts and look forward to learning of their accomplishments next Fall.

Dr. Paul Smith, Department of Biology, has been awarded a LI-COR Genomics Education Matching Funds grant in the amount of $52,152 toward the "Sequencing, Microsatellite, and AFLP® Package." Dr. Smith will conduct research in DNA sequencing and genotyping of diploid organisms for biodiversity, forensic, mapping, and association analysis. LI-COR designs, manufactures, and markets instruments for biological, biotechnical, environmental, and drug discovery research. We wish him success in his research.

The National Institute of Health's (NIH) Minority Access to Research Careers Undergraduate Student Training in Academic Research (MARC U-STAR) is an honors research training program designed to encourage upper division math, science, and computer science students to pursue PhDs in biomedical and behavioral research. I am pleased to announce that Dr. Carl Kemnitz has received a three-year renewal of the MARC USTAR grant. The $738,122 award provides scholarships to students in their junior and senior years to engage in mentored research, including a summer of study at a different research university, to prepare students for successful admission into biomedical PhD programs. The renewal is a testament to the quality and strength of the program administered by Dr. Kemnitz.

Student Research
Please join me in congratulating the following CSUB students who participated in the CSU Statewide Research Competition on May 4-5, 2007 at California State University, Dominguez Hills. Anne Draucker took first place for the graduate division in physical and mathematical sciences. Her faculty mentor was Dr. Dirk Baron. Udai Sibia placed first runner-up in the biological and agricultural sciences undergraduate division. Her faculty mentor was Dr. Brandon Pitt. Also presenting were Deanna Heikkinen, faculty mentor: Dr. Tim Vivian; Monika Tincher, faculty mentor: Dr. Andreas Gebauer; Greg Stevens, faculty mentor: Dr. Paul Smith; and Nikki Willits, faculty mentor: Dr. Brian Hemphill. To see a compete list of presenters and competition results, please see

Please also join me in congratulating the following biology students who presented at the 32nd West Coast Biological Sciences Undergraduate Research Conference on April 28, 2007 at Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA: Stacey Abidayo, Ammar Zanial, and Ali Zanial. Well done.

Student Accolades
Student Athletes Finish Higher Than Harvard on National All-Academic List
The National Wrestling Coaches Association's (NWCA) NCAA Division I All-Academic Top 30 list ranks CSUB wrestlers at No. 13 among all Division I schools in the nation. Our wrestlers' 2.944 cumulative grade point average was higher than that of Harvard, which ranked 19th, Columbia which placed 21st, Cornell at 22nd, and Penn State, which did not make the list. Among Pac-10 schools which made the All-Academic list, CSUB ranked second, following Stanford, and out-performed 23rd ranked UC Davis. Individually, Eric Parker, a senior, made the 57-member All-America wrestling team. Eric carries a 3.5 grade point average. Congratulations to our student athletes.

Honors Society Recognition
CSUB's Beta Gamma Sigma chapter in the School of Business and Public Administration is one of three CSU chapters named as "exemplary" at the honor society's annual national meeting held in April 2007. The status is earned by achieving an overall membership acceptance rate of 70-84%, or a minimum undergraduate or graduate membership acceptance rate of 85%. Congratulations to the BPA students.

Our Newest Graduates Continue Academic and Career Pursuits
Many of our seniors and graduate students have decided to continue their education to pursue advanced degrees. I am pleased to share with you the information we have received to date regarding the accomplishments and plans of some of our students. I am sure you will join me in letting these students know how proud we are of them.

Doctoral Programs
Business and Public Administration master's candidate Dan Gianoutsos, who also is the past ASI President, current Presidential Intern, and Interim Director of the Student Union, has been accepted into the PhD program at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas where he will study higher education leadership. Ly Ly Pham, a CSUB student research scholar in chemistry, has been accepted into the PhD program in Toxicology at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. She also will receive a research assistant fellowship from the university. Jenny Holland, a double major in political science and English, has received full funding to the Ph.D. program in political science at Washington State University. James Cazares, a master's candidate in psychology, will enter Texas Tech's PhD program in experimental social psychology and has been awarded a $9,000 AT&T Chancellor's Endowed Fellowship for outstanding Texas Tech graduate students. Mathematics major Gregory Shinault will enter the doctoral program in applied mathematics at UC Davis this fall. Patty Lopez has been accepted into San Joaquin College of Law. Nursing faculty member Debra Wilson, MSN, RN, has been selected to participate in the Chancellor's Doctoral Incentive program. She will begin her doctoral studies this summer. Sociology master's candidate Mark Salvaggio has the enviable task of deciding which of two PhD program offers in sociology to accept the University of Nevada at Las Vegas or the University of Lancaster in England. Whichever he chooses, Mark hopes to return to CSUB upon completion to take part in the CSUB vision.

Master's Programs
Three seniors have been accepted into the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication. ASI President Kenneth Beurmann completed his undergraduate coursework in business administration in three years with a 3.65 grade point average. Janae Jacobs, a business administration major, graduates magna cum laude with a 3.71 grade point average. Marcus Mulick, a member of the CSUB soccer team, is a communications major with a grade point average of 3.28. All are Hawk Honors Program students and will continue to be exceptional students at USC. UC Santa Barbara made sociology major and psychology minor Miguel Becerra an offer he could not refuse. Along with tuition and fee waivers, the cum laude graduate will receive an $18,000 yearly fellowship in the Latin America Studies master's program at UCSB. Christine Ramsey, an English major at our Antelope Valley Center, has been accepted into the master's program in English at CSUB, also at the Antelope Valley Center. Kristen Steele-Watt, Chad Willis, and Carol Register have been accepted into the master's program in anthropology at CSUB. Veronica Cieslik proudly shares that she is a 55-year-old Psi Chi Honor Society student with a 3.57 grade point average who returned to school after her five children were grown. She has been accepted into the master's program in counseling psychology at CSUB. Tamera Bergstrasser, Shannon Barger, and Kristine Becker will pursue teaching credentials at CSUB. Christina McDaniels, a psychology major, has been accepted into the master's of social work program at CSUB, as has Gregory Winkler, who majored in sociology with a minor in public administration. Nikki Willits, a double major in English and anthropology, will pursue a master's degree in anthropology at CSU Chico.

Professional Careers
Amethyst Phillips, a double major in physics and political science, is distinguished as the first CSUB student to be accepted into the Teach for America program. After fulfilling a two-year teaching assignment in an urban school district in Chicago, Amethyst will pursue graduate school in political science. Ken Hayakawa is an international student from Japan who double-majored in finance and management and double-minored in economics and communications. After serving as a residence hall assistant, teaching assistant in economics and establishing the Japan and Beyond Club, Ken now returns to Tokyo to accept a job offer from Goldman Sachs. Tiara Cox, a political science and communications double major and 2006-2007 Washington, D.C. congressional intern through the Panetta Institute, has accepted a position as a district representative in the office of Congressman Jim Costa.

We are proud of all of our CSUB seniors and graduate students and wish each one success as they take the next step on their life paths.

University Council
The last University Council meeting of the academic year was held on May 18th. Meetings will resume in the fall.

I look forward to seeing you at commencement, around campus or at an upcoming University or community event.