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CSU Bakersfield President's Monthly Campus Update

MLK Day of Service
For many across the nation, Monday, January 17th was not a day off, but a day on. The commemoration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday is widely observed as a national day of service. On this, the 25th anniversary of the MLK Jr. National Day of Service, many of our faculty, staff, and students participated in a combination of community service and community educational events. The Center for Community Engagement and Career Exploration (CECE), the CSUB Student Athletes Advisory Committee (SAAC), and the CSUB baseball team partnered with Stop the Violence and other community agencies to pick up trash and paint over graffiti in Southeast Bakersfield. In the afternoon, our student-athletes assisted in providing educational information to the community, including reviewing with elementary, middle, and high school students our "How to Get to College" roadmap. Many of our administrators attended the annual breakfast at the MLK Center in Southeast Bakersfield. Thanks to Jane Evarian, CECE Director, Dr. Tanya Boone, CECE Faculty Coordinator, and Mike McCarthy, SAAC President for coordinating and participating in this important community event.

State Budget Update
As I shared in my video message to you last week, the Governor's proposed budget includes deep cuts to higher education. The $1.4 billion reduction in state funding includes a $500 million reduction for the CSU, a $500 million reduction to the UC, and a $400 million reduction to the community college system. The impact of such cuts means that we might have to limit enrollment and re-open for discussion those budget strategies implemented for the 2009-10 academic year. My full message is available on our website at Budget Central,, as are the PowerPoints from our previous campus budget forums. I will continue to keep you informed as new information comes forth.

Major Gift
Please join me in thanking Drs. Girish and Pragati Patel, former owners of Truxtun Radiology, who recently donated $450,000 to CSU Bakersfield. The gift marks one of the largest non-corporate donations in some time and will establish the Patel Endowment Fund to benefit CSUB's Health Care Administration program. The Patels have been longtime financial supporters of various local charities, but this marks the first time they have donated to higher education. We appreciate their desire to partner with us to help improve the quality of education in the local health care field. The Patel Endowment Fund will be used specifically for student internships, adjunct professors, outside speakers, research projects and program expansion to enhance the student experience.

Graduate Center Opening
Please join me this morning at 10:00 a.m. in DDH C-100 for the ribbon cutting of our new Graduate Student Center. As I shared with you in the last issue of the Update, the one-stop center is funded by a $2.5 million Title V grant which will facilitate a streamlined and coordinated graduate admissions process. For more information, please call x2793.

Recyclemania Kick-Off
I hope you will join me on Monday, January 24th from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. for the kick- off of Recyclemania, our student-led national recycling competition. A light lunch will be provided. The kick-off will be video-streamed and available for later review for those who cannot attend. Recyclemania will mark the start of our campus-wide recycling program which I described more fully in the December issue of the Update. For more information on the kick- off event, please contact Taren Mulhause, Executive Director of Associated Students, Inc., at x2418.

Solar Panel "Flip the Switch"
We will flip the switch on our solar parking project on Wednesday, February 9th at 10:30 a.m. in Lot "E." SunEdison, our partner in the project, along with local dignitaries, will be on hand for the official "flip." The morning will continue in the Student Union Multipurpose Room with an environmental sustainability "Teach- In" to share with the campus the various sustainability initiatives now in place or in development on campus. I encourage you to come and hear specifics about our solar project, recycling program, alternative transportation initiative, including our bike share program, and sustainable dining services. For more information, please contact Deborah Burks, Confidential Office Support Staff, in the Office of the President at x2241.

New Athletics Director
Jeff Konya, our new athletics director, is now aboard. We look forward to his leadership in advancing our athletics program in Division I. I am sure you will be hearing from him.

University Council
The first University Council meeting of 2011will be held on January 21 at 2:00 p.m. in the Albertson Room. All members of the campus community are welcome to attend.

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

Horace Mitchell, Ph.D.