SJSU Begins 2014-15 Academic Year


The east wing of the Student Union is open. On the first floor are eight new eateries and beautiful indoor and outdoor seating areas line the first floor (Stan Olszewski photo).

Blue skies greeted more than 32,000 students and 4,500 faculty and staff members for the start of San Jose State’s 2014-15 academic year.

The crowd included 3,500 first-time freshmen, 3,700 new undergraduate transfers, 2,000 new graduate students and 33 new tenure-track faculty members.

The arrival of so many tenure-track faculty members shows the benefit of a stable budget and signals a strong commitment to long-term planning.

Helping newcomers

In addition, SJSU is extending a special welcome to 80 transfers from National Hispanic University. Orientation events held during the summer should help everyone settle in.

If anyone needs a hand, “Ask Me” volunteers are once again stationed outdoors throughout campus. 

Do we have an app for that? Yes, we do! SJSU Guide is loaded with information including a campus map.

Downloading the guide? You’ll find campus WiFi now covers very close to all six million square feet of classroom and office space.

Perhaps the most visible change for those arriving this week–from the parking garages, Park & Ride Lot or alternative transportation–is the construction.

Facility improvements

Yes! Our 150-year-old campus is receiving a major renovation.

The east wing of the Student Union is open. On the first floor are eight new eateries and beautiful indoor and outdoor seating areas line the first floor.

A gleaming new ballroom large enough for 850 dinner guests is open on the second floor.

In addition, the Spartan Bookstore has moved into temporary digs in the east wing while the rest of the Student Union is completed.

Meanwhile, construction crews are putting finishing touches on Yoshihiro Uchida Hall. The exterior walls are up on the Student Health and Counseling Center.

Also on the way are a new dormitory and new landscaping for the Art Building, Sweeney Hall and El Paseo de Cesar Chavez (check out the beautiful new palm trees!).

Major events

Later this term, the Student Union will host two special guests speakers: Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor and bestselling novelist Khaled Hosseini.

Tower Lawn remains a gorgeous green, thanks to recycled water that has reduced SJSU’s potable water consumption by 45 percent annually.

So Tower Lawn will be the place to be this term for many gatherings including the Spartan Squad kick-off 6 p.m. Aug. 27 and the Student Organization Fair 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 3.

Both of these events are part of Fall Welcome Days, a series of outstanding opportunities to reach out, meet people and learn something in the process.

Also coming up this week is Spartan Football’s season opener against North Dakota. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. Aug. 28. Go early, get a Bill Walsh bobble head, and then stay for the fireworks.

Admission to home football games is free for all students with a Tower ID card. The president has extended a very similar offer to all faculty and staff (check your email!).

Staying safe

Speaking of major events, there is nothing like a 6.0-magnitude trembler the day before classes begin to send the message that safety comes first.

The University Police Department keeps in touch with campus via Alert-SJSU (update your contact information now) and offers an Evening Guide Escort Program and Evening Shuttle.

UPD’s website contains lots of prevention and preparedness information. The Spartans for Safety website also consolidates many services available at SJSU.


President Mohammad Qayoumi

President Delivers Fall Welcome Address

Mohammad Qayoumi

President Mohammad Qayoumi

Media contact:  Pat Lopes Harris, 408-656-6999

SAN JOSE, CA – San Jose State President Mohammad Qayoumi delivered the Fall Welcome Address at noon Aug. 27 in the new Student Union ballroom. The address was open to the campus community and media. In addition, the event was streamed live on the web. A transcript is accessible from the university website.

An annual tradition, the Fall Welcome Address marks the beginning of the 158th academic year. On Aug. 27, President Qayoumi urged the SJSU community to build on its rich heritage of regional stewardship, social justice, shared mission and student success.

Specifically, the president encouraged students, faculty and staff to tackle today’s defining issues with the same persistence, grit, and self-determination exemplified by Spartans throughout SJSU’s history.

President Qayoumi also touched on campus governance, underrepresented communities, facility and technology upgrades, tenure-track faculty, and the Special Task Force for Racial Discrimination recommendations.

 SJSU map, directions.

San Jose State University — Silicon Valley’s largest institution of higher learning with 30,000 students and 3,850 employees — is part of the California State University system. SJSU’s 154-acre downtown campus anchors the nation’s 10th largest city.

Dwight Bentel Hall: Important Update

Dwight Bentel Hall

Dwight Bentel Hall (Bruce Cramer photo)

Media contact: Pat Lopes Harris, 408-924-1748

SAN JOSE, CA – Dwight Bentel Hall, home to San Jose State’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication, will be closed to students Aug. 25 and 26.

Students in classes scheduled to meet in DBH for the first time on Monday or Tuesday should go directly to the new Student Union Ballrooms A and B (Monday) or Ballroom A (Tuesday).

Report to the table identified with your classroom number (for example, DBH 133) to receive instructions from faculty members. Staff will also be outside DBH to direct students as needed.

Water damage

On Tuesday, Aug. 19, construction crews identified water damage to corridor and restroom walls in the east wing of DBH.

Moisture was also reported in some offices and hallways. The cause was a leak in the steam distribution system that runs beneath the building.

After the damage was discovered, SJSU’s Environmental Health and Safety staff conducted an immediate review.

Materials were removed, the affected area was sealed off, and efforts were initiated to eliminate residual moisture using industrial fans and dehumidifiers.

Repairs underway

SJSU will assess repair efforts throughout the week and provide updates as needed. Initially, repairs were to be concluded in time for the first day of fall semester.

Construction crews spent the summer renovating the overall structure, originally completed in 1911, and renovated and re-opened in 1991. The temporary closure affects approximately 28 faculty members and 1,250 students.

“The good news is that we are well on our way to bringing one of our most historic buildings into the 21st century,” Provost Andrew Hale Feinstein said.

“We are doing our very best to honor the legacy of the late Dwight Bentel, founder of our top-notch journalism program.”

San Jose State University — Silicon Valley’s largest institution of higher learning with 30,000 students and 3,850 employees — is part of the California State University system. SJSU’s 154-acre downtown campus anchors the nation’s 10th largest city.

Chang Kim and students

Campus Collaboration Leads to New SJSU Identity System

Chang Kim and students

Professor Chang Kim and his students collaborated with Marketing and Communications to create SJSU’s new identity system. (Rachel Poage Photo)

This month, a new San Jose State identity system will replace the current university logo. But wasn’t the logo just updated?

This time is different. Really. For the first time in SJSU’s history, the university is rolling out a brand platform that is bringing the campus community together—and the new visual identity system is just one part of the platform.

We are determined to develop SJSU’s brand identity efficiently, authentically and collaboratively,” said Barry Shiller, associate vice president for marketing and communications, who is leading the university’s branding effort.

To reimagine the university’s identity system, SJSU’s Office of Marketing and Communications sponsored a project with the Department of Graphic Design. Associate Professor Chang Kim, a team of students and other faculty members worked together to design the set of identity marks and graphic elements that capture both the tradition and spirit of the university. In addition, the new visual identity system includes a typeface that Kim created just for San Jose State.

For Spartans, by Spartans

The collaboration for SJSU’s new identity system was the brainchild of University Art Director Michelle Frey, the design lead for the Marketing and Communications team. She believes in relying on campus talent for creative projects whenever possible—which fulfills SJSU’s promise to provide hands-on experience and exposure for students.

San Jose State has an incredible graphic design program,” Frey said. “And the best way to present an authentic SJSU brand is to create it within the university.”

Among the changes to expect: a new brand platform that focuses on San Jose State’s people and a visual identity system that relies on what makes the university unique. Hint: San Jose State is the only institution with the initials “SJSU.”

Listening to campus input

“We’ve been very intentional about updating colleges and other campus units, including Associated Students and our Alumni Association board, seeking and listening to campus input,” said Shiller.

We’ve probably done more than 40 presentations, and the work reflects what we’ve heard.”

In use since 2008, the “bricks,” as people call the current logo, has been likened to a microchip or a soccer ball. The new identity system, however, is more meaningful, especially since Spartans created it. “It’s less institutional and more personal,” explained Shiller. “As one student aptly said, ‘You can’t hug a brick.’”

The first set of guides and resources is now available on the Marketing and Communications website.

Sign up to receive email updates and to participate in the development of the brand effort.

Student Success, Excellence and Technology Fee.

President’s Update: Success Fee

a protest on Tuesday focused on SJSU’s Student Success, Excellence and Technology Fee

Administrators address students April 29 at Tower Hall (Christiana Cobb photo).

On April 29, President Qayoumi emailed the following message to all students, faculty, staff and administrators.

Dear SJSU Community,

As many of you know, a protest on Tuesday focused on SJSU’s Student Success, Excellence and Technology Fee. There have been discussions here and on many other California State University campuses about success fees, which fund essential student services that would otherwise be unavailable because state budget appropriations remain below pre-Recession levels.

At San Jose State, my administration has been meeting with student leaders on this topic for several months. While the success fee funds programs and services that benefit many students, we understand that the fee is a substantial addition to the total cost of attendance.

We have been developing plans to address this concern, and we will act on two fronts:

  • This fall, we will unbundle the success fee into three components. This should make it easier to follow the allocation of these fees to courses, to other instructional activities such as library materials, and to student support services such as academic advising and technology.
  • Student leaders have suggested surveying students to research an acceptable dollar ceiling for the success fee. I agree that polling students is a good idea and we will work together to make this happen, ideally by the end of this term. Our plan is to take the poll into consideration when setting the success fee for fall 2014. Students should expect a fee reduction.

We welcome the opportunity for further discussion with the campus community, and will update you on our progress.


Mohammad Qayoumi

Judge LaDoris Cordell

President’s Update: Task Force Recommendations

Judge LaDoris Cordell

Judge LaDoris Cordell at the final task force meeting (James Tensuan photo).

President Qayoumi emailed the following statement to all faculty, staff and students regarding alleged hate crimes in SJSU’s student housing complex. A website summarizing all relevant reports, updates and messages has been established.

Last night, the Special Task Force on Racial Discrimination held its sixth and final meeting, which I attended.

In appointing this task force, I asked for recommendations that would help ensure a safe, welcoming, inclusive climate for everyone in the SJSU community. It was important to me that the task force and its work be both independent and transparent, and that its membership reflect diverse constituencies and viewpoints.

The task force met all of these objectives. All meetings were publicized and open to the public, and accessible to others via live webcast. All drafts of task force recommendations were posted and available for public review, as are the corrected final recommendations [PDF].

At Thursday’s meeting, I publicly thanked retired Judge LaDoris Cordell for serving as task force chair. She was the strong, focused leader we wanted. I also thanked each task force member for investing time and energy in this important effort. Their honest input has been crucial, and will help inform our future actions.

The task force has offered more than 50 suggestions. In the aggregate, they reflect the diverse experiences and perspectives on this committee, as well as input offered by others. These recommendations deserve and will receive careful consideration and study. We will then develop an implementation timeline.

There are no easy or quick fixes. I am committed to thoughtful, sustainable actions that will have the long-term impact we all desire. We will act in a timely manner, and we will report our progress both to our campus and the community at large.

Mohammad Qayoumi

Hillary Clinton

An Evening with a Leader

An Evening with a Leader: Hillary Clinton Talks Women's Rights and Personal History

President Qayoumi welcomes Hillary Clinton to the Event Center (Brandon Chew photo).

Women must dare to compete. Hillary Clinton faced thousands of community members and students in the San Jose State Event Center the evening of April 10, challenging women to break down the glass ceilings and messages projecting self-doubt and perfectionism that often stifle them in the workforce.

Haters and lovers

Despite crowds of more than 75 people from the Constitution party chanting “open your eyes, poor guide,” trying to bring awareness about Clinton and the Benghazi “scandal” in 2012, guests said their excitement to see one of their “favorite” politicians couldn’t be suppressed. The audience ranged from people young and old, male and female, families and singles.

In section 2 of the Event Center, where one had a clear side view of Clinton, sat a father and his son. Ian Sills, 13, said he is an aspiring politician, and he’s always admired the issues on which Clinton has worked. Eric, his father, and a Justice Studies lecturer at SJSU, said he too has always been impressed by her political stance and knew this was one event he wanted to make sure he and his son attended.  “I think she’s been through a lot, gone through a lot, but I think she’s got a lot still to do,” Eric Sills said referring to Clinton’s possible run for the presidency in 2016.

An Evening with a Leader: Hillary Clinton Talks Women's Rights and Personal History

As Clinton walked onto the stage, she greeted the standing, cheering crowd (Brandon Chew photo).

Expectancy of Clinton’s candidacy filled the room as one student, Maddy Ferrito, ‘15 European Studies, said  “it’s about time,” that America has such a promising possibility in a woman candidate for president.

Sitting next to Ferrito was Andrew Johnson, ‘14 American Studies, who said he too is a Clinton supporter and though many politicians don’t boast about their knowledge of Washington, he said he admires that Clinton has been part of the politics in Washington for many years yet doesn’t fall into the “disgusting overtone of the capital right now.” So when he heard that Clinton was speaking, he said he “definitely didn’t want to miss this.”

An intimate chat

The stage was set up in such a way as to resemble an afternoon tea with two chairs and a small table. Larry Stone, Santa Clara County assessor and good friend to the Clinton family, was the Q&A moderator. Though he joked about Clinton making the presidential announcement the audience had been waiting for, he wanted the evening to be one in which the audience would gain more than politics.  “She’s vilified a lot,” Stone said. “I wanted the audience to know Hillary like I know her. She’s a warm, interesting, nice individual.”

The evening began with university President Mohammad Qayoumi introducing Clinton. “So tonight, Madam Secretary, you are an honorary Spartan,” he said. As Clinton walked onto the stage, she greeted the standing, cheering crowd with a smile, waving her hands and saying “thank you” as the audience responded with I love yous.

Competing for your dreams

As the audience gazed at Clinton, she urged the audience to take a look at women’s rights in America and the world. She hit on an issue close to home at SJSU. Though the university has a thriving engineering program and other science and math programs, the percentage of women in those career paths is modest. “Women account for just 11 percent of directors on technology boards. That’s a problem right here in this region,” Clinton said.  As a woman in a male dominated field, she said she’s always had to compete.

An Evening with a Leader: Hillary Clinton Talks Women's Rights and Personal History

“All most women need is a fighting chance to prove themselves,” Clinton said. (Brandon Chew photo)

Recalling her own story, Clinton said “starting from the time when I was a little girl, I always was told by my parents that I had the same opportunities as my brothers. I had a responsibility to make the most of myself and that I would, if I did work hard, be able to do those things in life that were of interest to me.”

She said though women have abilities to succeed in male dominated careers, “All most women need is a fighting chance to prove themselves.”

Great women inspire great women

Stone wanted to emphasize Clinton’s inspirations to be the woman she is today. With two women in mind, Clinton shared how her mother Dorothy Rodham and Eleanor Roosevelt were her instrumental inspirations.

Clinton’s mother was orphaned as a young girl, lived a very poor life but desired to go to high school. She said her mother worked as a young girl taking care of a neighborhood woman’s children. During that time, Rodman’s neighbor told her that if she continued to watch the children, she could go to school. “Her story is not my story but it influenced who I became and it really gave me an appreciation for how important it is that we take care of each other.” Though Rodham was abandoned by her parents and grandparents, Clinton said those who stepped in to care for her mother made all the difference.

The event was no more than an hour and a half, yet audience member Erin Roby said she could’ve listened to Clinton longer and she was “more than impressed by what she said.”

Kelly Patterson, a senior at Palo Alto High School, said she received tickets as a birthday present and Clinton’s speech was “really motivating because she’s such a good role model. I’ve heard her speak before, but in person, it’s so different. It gives you chills.”

Spartans Supporting Spartans

 Professor Eugene Cordero speaking at the 2012 TEDxSanJoseCA event on the topic of reducing annual carbon emissions (TEDxSanJoseCA/Flickr photo).

Professor Eugene Cordero speaking at the 2012 TEDxSanJoseCA event on the topic of reducing annual carbon emissions (TEDxSanJoseCA/Flickr photo).

“I’m inspired by work that happens on campus in areas that are very different from my own,” says Eugene Cordero, professor of meteorology and climate science. “Having the opportunity to support work others are doing allows you to feel as though you are helping.”

As regular donors and committee members for this year’s Spartans Supporting Spartans campaign, Cordero and his wife Clare, a lecturer in the engineering department, are passionate about helping. For Cordero, this campaign offers an opportunity for the campus community to come together and feel good about the university.

“You can give money to scholarships or to an outreach program that helps kids learn about science, or the library. Those are things that everyone can feel good about supporting,” says Eugene Cordero. “Our university is not just the administration; it’s the faculty, the staff, the programs, the students. I’m inspired by our students. That’s why I’m here.”

Cordero encourages his colleagues to consider what keeps them here, too. He offers this advice to fellow faculty members: “Keep using that positive energy to inspire students to learn and be creative and do great things!”

Make a gift through Spartans Supporting Spartans.



Andy Feinstein

SJSU Appoints Provost

Andy Feinstein

Andrew (Andy) Hale Feinstein

Media contact: Pat Lopes Harris, 408-924-1748

Dr. Andrew (Andy) Hale Feinstein has been appointed provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, effective April 21.

“Please join me and the members of my cabinet in welcoming Dr. Andy Feinstein as our provost and vice president for Academic Affairs,”  President Mohammad Qayoumi said. “I would like to extend my gratitude to all the members of the search committee, who worked tirelessly to review an applicant pool of more than 70 highly qualified candidates.”

Upon learning of the appointment, search committee chair and Professor of Accounting and Finance Annette Nellen said she was pleased to hear SJSU’s interim provost would have the opportunity to serve the SJSU community on a permanent basis. Feinstein was appointed deputy provost in July 2013 and interim provost in January 2014.

“I am humbled to serve this great institution. My family and I are happy to be here, and look forward to further engaging with the university community,” Feinstein said.

At SJSU, Feinstein focused on improving retention and graduation rates; addressing diversity and campus climate issues; streamlining the transfer process for community college students; creating a new budget model that will be implemented for the 2014/15 academic year; developing new resource allocation and reporting methods for self-support programs; and establishing a new divisional enrollment planning model.  

Throughout this time, Dr. Feinstein has worked collaboratively across the campus and earned the respect of his colleagues,” President Qayoumi said.

Professional Experience

Prior to SJSU, Feinstein was dean and James A. Collins Distinguished Chair of The Collins College of Hospitality Management at Cal Poly Pomona. Cal Poly Pomona ranks among the top public universities in the western United States and serves approximately 20,000 undergraduate and graduate students who reflect the diversity of Southern California. The Collins College is the first and largest hospitality program in California and ranked as one of the best programs in the country. During his time at the college, Feinstein implemented a strategic plan resulting in the elevation of the program to a college, the development of a successful self-supported Masters of Science program currently ranked among the top 10 in the nation, the raising of more than $14 million in gifts, and the design and oversight of a $10 million facility expansion expected to open in 2015.

In 2008, the chancellor of the California State University appointed Feinstein as the system-wide director of Hospitality Management Education. The CSU is the largest university system in the country and graduates 94 percent of all California hospitality management students from its programs. Feinstein provided support for 14 hospitality programs and managed two advisory boards. He has engaged in successful lobbying efforts on behalf of the CSU, created outreach programs targeting underrepresented groups, and expedited the approval of more than 200 articulation agreements between the CSU and community colleges throughout California.

Scholarly Achievements

Prior to becoming dean, Feinstein served as senior adviser to the president at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. This cabinet-level position managed the president’s relationship with internal and external constituents. In this role, Feinstein oversaw the awarding and funding of several presidential research grants, participated in Board of Regents meetings, and coordinated presidential advancement activities. Previously, Feinstein was associate dean for strategic initiatives at the UNLV’s Harrah Hotel College. He also served on launch and steering committees for a successful $500 million comprehensive campaign and was a member of the Biomedical Institutional Review Board.

Feinstein holds a B.S. and M.S. in Hotel Administration from the University of Nevada Las Vegas. He received his doctoral degree from Pennsylvania State University, where he held an Academic Computing Fellowship. He has published more than 30 refereed journal articles and presented at dozens of meetings and conferences. Areas of focus have included instructional systems, simulation modeling, and food service operations. Feinstein is a fellow and past president of the Association of Business Simulation and Experiential Learning. He is the co-author of two hospitality purchasing textbooks, one of which is currently adopted at more than 250 colleges and universities worldwide.

San Jose State University — Silicon Valley’s largest institution of higher learning with 30,000 students and 3,850 employees — is part of the California State University system. SJSU’s 154-acre downtown campus anchors the nation’s 10th largest city.

Spartans Supporting Spartans

Spartans Supporting Spartans: Sami Monsur’s Staff Scholarship

SJSU staff member Sami Monsur established the Support Our Staff Scholarship after earning a degree in Spanish while working at San Jose State.

“I am a strong believer in volunteering and giving back,” says Sami Monsur, resource analyst in the Connie L. Lurie College of Education—and she’s got the scholarship to prove it. In 2012, Monsur established the Support Our Staff Scholarship, an annual $500 scholarship that provides financial support for staff members working toward a degree at San Jose State.

The impetus for the gift was her own experience: Monsur was simultaneously a student and staff member while working toward her degree in Spanish, which she completed in 2011. “My dean, Elaine Chin, offers professional development money to every staff member. It has helped many, including me, pay for books and other costs related to our studies,” Monsur says. “As a student, I really saw how much the funds helped.”

The Support Our Staff Scholarship extends similar support to staff members university-wide who are matriculated students, whether they’re employees of the university, Research Foundation or Tower Foundation.

“You can always better yourself and try to move up in the world. Staff members don’t always make a lot of money, but we do have an opportunity to get a degree,” says Monsur. “Even with the tuition fee waiver [that state employees receive], school materials like books and a laptop are expensive—especially if someone is supporting a family.”

Last year the scholarship was awarded for the first time, and now, it’s growing. As one of the gift options for this year’s Spartans Supporting Spartans campaign, Monsur’s annual contribution has already been bolstered by more than a dozen new gifts from other staff and faculty members. “As it continues to grow, hopefully we’ll be able to award two or three scholarships a year,” she says.

“There is a really strong team of staff members that keeps this university going,” says Monsur. “I’m proud of that. I’m proud of our staff.”

Make a gift to the Support Our Staff Scholarship or an area of your choice through Spartans Supporting Spartans by April 18.


Lieutenant Governor Addresses Education Forum

Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom gave the keynote address at a Committee for Economic Development event held at King Library (JP Tran photo).

Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom gave the keynote address at a Committee for Economic Development event held at King Library (JP Tran photo).

When Gavin Newsom visited San Jose State one year ago, he discussed how public universities must evolve. His March 28 visit was much the same.

As the keynote speaker at a King Library luncheon organized by the Committee for Economic Development (CED), a nonprofit, nonpartisan, business-led public policy organization based in Washington, D.C., the lieutenant governor told business and education leaders that California’s public university systems are “selling an industrial version of education in a communications age.”

Citing unemployment rates as high as 25 percent in Colusa County, in comparison with seven percent in Santa Clara County, Newsom urged both systems to develop “action plans” addressing “this Gatsby Curve that now exists quite acutely.”

What used to be a moral thing to do,” CED Executive Vice President Michael Petro said of public education, “is now an economic imperative.”

Investing in Education

The Committee for Economic Development hosted the event to discuss its recent report, “Boosting California’s Postsecondary Education Performance.” The study focuses on “broad-access” institutions, “where the vast majority of the workers will be educated,” Petro said.

Lieutenant Governor Addresses Education Forum

A panel discussion included Lenny Mendonca, Elaine Chin, Jay Banfield and David F. Welch (JP Tran photo).

During a panel discussion, Elaine Chin, dean of the Connie L. Lurie College of Education, noted “decades of dis-investment,” have eroded efforts to make good on philosopher John Dewey’s vision:

“What the best and wisest parent wants for his own child, that must the community want for all of its children.”

An Inflection Point

Jay Banfield, founding executive director of Year Up, agreed that the country had hit an inflection point, where “companies are struggling to find talent” yet “talented young people are struggling to find opportunities.”

This connected to a question from moderator Lenny Mendonca, director emeritus of McKinsey & Company and a CED trustee to ask: What do CEOs look for when hiring?

“The ability to switch from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset, the ability to change, and the ability to participate in a team,” said David F. Welch, co-founder and president of Infinera.

They need to have the perspective that it’s going to be a wild ride,” Welch added, “so accept it.”

Shirley Weber

Assembly Committee on Campus Climate to Convene

Tower Hall and the front entrance of Morris Dailey

The Assembly Select Committee on Campus Climate will meet March 21 at Morris Dailey Auditorium (Bruce Cramer photo).

(Editor’s note: The following was posted March 5 by the office of Assembly Member Shirley N. Weber.)

Media contact: Joe Kocurek, (619) 655-8330

SACRAMENTO – Assembly Member Shirley N. Weber, chair of the Assembly Select Committee on Campus Climate, has announced that the committee will hold its first informational hearing on Friday, March 21, from 12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m., at San Jose State University’s Morris Dailey Auditorium, One Washington Square, San Jose. Students and the public are invited to attend.

The Select Committee on Campus Climate was formed to explore issues of diversity, tolerance and student safety at the state’s college campuses after a series of bias-motivated incidents in recent years, including a serious incident at San Jose State last fall involving an assault on an African American. This is the first of four hearings to be held throughout the state over the next few months.

“Our mission is to ensure that the state’s college campuses are safe and welcoming environments for all students,” said Weber, a former faculty member and department chair at San Diego State University.

For more information, please contact Assembly Member Weber’s Capitol Office at (916) 319–2079.

Read the full release. 

William (Bill) Hauck

Remembering Bill Hauck

Remembering Bill Hauck

William (Bill) Hauck

(Editor’s note: The following was posted today by the California State University public affairs office.)

Media contacts: Mike Uhlenkamp or Laurie Weidner, (562) 951-4800

(March 10, 2014) – The California State University (CSU) mourns the passing of William (Bill) Hauck, one of the longest serving members on the CSU Board of Trustees, an alumnus and an ardent advocate of the CSU.  Appointed to the Board in 1993, Trustee Hauck served as vice chair from 1996 to 1998 and as chair from 1998 to 2000.  At the time of his passing he chaired the Board’s Finance Committee.

“We are all deeply saddened by the passing of such an iconic figure in the CSU and our state.  Bill will be remembered as a bold leader, a proud and accomplished alumnus and tireless champion of the CSU and our students.  The entire CSU family is diminished by his loss,” said CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White.

An alumnus of San Jose State and former president of the California State Student Association (CSSA), Hauck was a staunch supporter of students who kept student success at the forefront of his decision-making.  During his long-standing service as a Trustee, Hauck served on numerous committees charged with improving student achievement including the steering committee for the system’s Access to Excellence strategic plan. In 2010, he endowed the Trustee William Hauck Scholarship, which recognizes a San José State University student who demonstrates superior academic performance, personal accomplishments and service to the community.  Additionally, Hauck led the search committees for several campus presidents including searches at Sacramento, San Jose and most recently at San Diego.  In 2012, Hauck chaired the search committee that appointed CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White.

“Bill will be remembered as a top-notch education policy leader with high professional integrity and an unwavering commitment to the university’s mission.  He inspired me and all who knew him.  Some of my fondest memories of Bill, in recent years, stemmed from his tireless advocacy work to safeguard state and federal financial aid for our neediest students.  I marveled at his ability to seize every available opportunity to boast about his alma mater, San Jose State, and tout the stellar work of our students and alumni.  Even though he had served for decades on the Board, Bill never lost his passion for the CSU nor his commitment to staying connected to students.  He took time to visit campuses and met regularly with students through CSSA. He has left a hole in our leadership team, and I will miss him beyond words,” said Board Chair Bob Linscheid.

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About the California State University
The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 447,000 students and 45,000 faculty and staff. The CSU awards more than 100,000 degrees annually and since its creation in 1961 has conferred nearly 2.9 million. The CSU is renowned for the quality of its teaching and for the job-ready graduates it produces. The mission of the CSU is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California. Connect with and learn more about the CSU at CSU Social Media. Show how the CSU matters to you and take action.

Distinguished Service Award: Julia Curry Rodriguez

Photo: Thomas Sanders, '15 MFA Photography

Photo: Thomas Sanders, ’15 MFA Photography

The Distinguished Service Award recognizes a faculty member for exemplary service in a leadership capacity to the university and/or community or profession that brings credit to San Jose State University. This year’s winner comes from the College of Social Sciences.

She will be honored at the 15th Annual Faculty Service Recognition and Awards Luncheon on March 11, 2014. Tickets are available for purchase. 

“I don’t want to just tell my students that I believe in them,” says Julia Curry Rodriguez, assistant professor of Mexican-American Studies and recipient of this year’s Distinguished Service Award.  “I want to show them that I do. You have to give them hope.”

For the undocumented, minority, at-risk and first-generation students Curry works with as an educator and activist, hope can make all the difference. “There are so many students who come here with a background like mine—students who are economically disadvantaged or are of color who go to college and feel like imposters,” says Curry. “They should never feel like that.”

Curry is a dedicated advocate of undocumented students at San Jose State and across California. She serves as advisor of Student Advocates for Higher Education (SAHE), the student support group for undocumented immigrants. She also works with AB 540 students and their families to address their unique challenges, assisting them with admissions and personally helping them bridge language and cultural barriers.

“My greatest rewards as an educator are working with students and the community, and speaking with others about the rights of undocumented students,” says Curry. “It is my responsibility to fill my students with the knowledge that they can do anything that they want. Everything these students hear in the media about people like them is that they don’t know how to succeed, and I totally disagree with that. I hold up a mirror and say, ‘Look at yourself and be proud.’”

“Through her work as an activist and educator, Curry has been able to help create a climate of respect, tolerance, and an appreciation for diversity not only at SJSU, but in our community,” writes one of her nominators. “She has brought attention to some of the most difficult issues facing our world today. She is a true advocate and leader in the fight for equality and social justice.”

“Having the opportunity to work at a campus that is filled with dedicated students who aspire to greatness is so extremely fulfilling,” says Curry, who continues to mentor her students in their careers even after they graduate, writing more than 100 letters of recommendation each year.

“One of my students who is now in graduate school at Texas A&M told me, ‘I want to be like you. I want to teach what you teach,’” says Curry with a smile. “And I said, ‘Go get a Ph.D. Then come back and take my job.’”

Outstanding Professor Award: Winifred Schultz-Krohn

Photo: Thomas Sanders, '15 MFA Photography

Photo: Thomas Sanders, ’15 MFA Photography

The Outstanding Professor Award recognizes a faculty member for overall excellence in academic assignment. This year’s winner comes from the College of Applied Sciences and Arts.

She will be honored at the 15th Annual Faculty Service Recognition and Awards Luncheon on March 11, 2014. Tickets are available for purchase.

“Even as an undergraduate, I wanted to teach occupational therapy,” says SJSU Professor Winifred Schultz-Krohn, recipient of this year’s Outstanding Professor Award. “The idea of working with individuals to discover their aptitudes despite their limitations—what they can do, not what they can’t do—is very inspiring. I was so excited as a student, and I see that same excitement my students today.”

Schultz-Krohn generously shares that excitement—and a considerable amount of chocolate (yes, chocolate!)—with her colleagues and students. In fact, her passion for the sweet stuff is second only to her commitment to teaching and helping those in need.

“A woman came into the clinic,” Schultz-Krohn says, speaking of one of three occupational therapy clinics that double as a practicum sites for graduate occupational therapy students. “Due to a traumatic brain injury, she had lost her ability to swallow. The student asked me to help because I have expertise in swallowing. Turns out she was a huge chocolate pudding fan!” The woman was partnered with an OT student and, by the time their work was done, she had improved her ability to swallow. And she got her chocolate fix.

Schultz-Krohn shows her dedication in sugar-free ways, too. For more than a decade, Schultz-Krohn and her students have offered occupational therapy services —from job readiness to parenting—to families and children who live in a homeless shelter in San Jose. She recalls a woman who had returned to the shelter with a message for her: “You and your students made all the difference. I now have a job, an apartment and insurance. Thank you for believing in me.”

She also believes in her students. A mentor to more than 150 students, she helps students present their research at professional meetings, a key step in launching their careers. “Publishing and presenting research with my students is the most rewarding part of my job as an educator,” says Schultz-Krohn, who is a member of the Academic Senate and serves on many university and professional boards and committees. “I’ve had students present research at state, national, and international occupational therapy conferences. Several students presented their research in Chile. Standing up there at a podium, they just own it.”

“Dr. Wynn dreams big for her students,” wrote graduate student Colleen Norlander in her nomination. “And she gives of her own time, energy and passion to see these goals accomplished.”

Schultz-Krohn offers this advice to her students: “Uncover the real, authentic you in whatever you’re doing.”

Outstanding Lecturer Award: Olenka Hubickyj

Photo: Thomas Sanders, ’15 MFA Photography

Photo: Thomas Sanders, ’15 MFA Photography

The Outstanding Lecturer Award recognizes a lecturer for excellence in teaching effectiveness and service to the San Jose State campus community. This year’s winner comes from the College of Science.

She will be honored at the 15th Annual Faculty Service Recognition and Awards Luncheon on March 11, 2014. Tickets are available for purchase.

In 2008, Olenka Hubickyj had been a researcher at NASA for 25 years, studying the formation of giant planets, when she got wind that San Jose State was looking for a science professor. She had never taught before, but “the idea kept haunting me,” says Hubickyj. “So I said, ‘why not?’”

Now a lecturer in physics and astronomy, Hubickyj is this year’s recipient of the Outstanding Lecturer Award. She continues her research and serves as director of Systems Teaching Institute at NASA Ames’ University Affiliated Research Center, where she helps place students into internship research positions.

Hubickyj, who wanted to be an astronomer at age nine, knows that her zeal for science is powerful. “My kids tell me to tone down the geek,” she says, laughing. “But when I tell my students something and see their eyes … I just love it. I always tell them I want to change the course name to ‘All Things Fantastic.’”

“Dr. Hubickyj’s enthusiasm is truly contagious,” writes one of her students. “I believe that had I taken her course as an incoming freshman I would have been inspired to pursue astronomy as my major.”

Department Chair Michael Kaufman echoes this sentiment in Hubickyj’s nomination: “What is immediately evident when one walks by one of Olenka’s classrooms is the energy flowing from it.”

The child of Ukrainian immigrants who had come to New York City via a refugee camp in post-war Germany, Hubickyj can relate to many SJSU students in a way that transcends science. “I spoke a different language at home and had to straddle two cultures. I understand what it’s like for these kids who have family, cultural and academic obligations,” she says. Though accepted into a prestigious private school, she attended the City College of New York for financial reasons. “I came from a school like SJSU. If it hadn’t been for CCNY, I wouldn’t be here. Going there did not mean I was less intelligent than students at elite schools. Now it’s my turn to reinforce that message here.”

One of Hubickyj’s approaches is to allow students to express their understanding of astronomy on their own terms. A requirement of her Descriptive Astronomy course is a semester-long research project where students can present their research through any medium: she has received a symphonic poem about a mission to Mars written and performed by a music composition major, a full press packet about the Big Bang from a hospitality student, and more space art than she can fit in her office.

“To help students find their power you must respect them,” says Hubickyj. “You must give second chances and make it safe to learn.”

President’s Scholar: Jo Farb Hernández

Photo: Thomas Sanders, ’15 MFA Photography

Photo: Thomas Sanders, ’15 MFA Photography

The President’s Scholar Award recognizes a faculty member who has achieved widespread recognition based on the quality of scholarship, performance or creative activities. This year’s winner comes from the College of Humanities and the Arts.

She will be honored at the 15th Annual Faculty Service Recognition and Awards Luncheon on March 11, 2014. Tickets are available for purchase.

Ask Jo Farb Hernández, professor of art and art history and this year’s recipient of the President’s Scholar Award, how she feels about the fact that she is considered one of the primary experts in the field of outsider art, and she will smile. “I don’t care for that term,” she says. “Humans have a tendency to classify things. Outsider art has come to refer to works created by those who are isolated from the mainstream art field, but this isn’t a movement like other fields. These creators don’t fit in a box.”

Neither does Hernández. After 25 years in the art and museum world, she was invited to apply to SJSU in 2000 for an unusual faculty appointment. The arrangement, in which she is encouraged to both do and teach, works well for Hernández. Three-quarters of her time is dedicated to directing the Natalie and James Thompson Art Gallery, overseeing the six student galleries, managing the university’s art collection, and coordinating a weekly speaker series and presentations for the art department. The remaining quarter of her time is spent teaching related classes in museum studies and associated subjects.

“It’s important to have a teacher-scholar model in a professor,” says Hernández, who also serves as executive director of SPACES (Saving and Preserving Arts and Cultural Environments). At SPACES, a nonprofit that focuses on the international study, documentation and preservation of art environments and self-taught artistic activity, she developed the most extensive public archive on the subject in the world.

“I love all aspects of scholarship—the field work, photography, meeting the artists, traveling, researching, writing. I’ve tried to study in areas that others haven’t, to fill in the gaps in the art historical record.” Hernández goes to great lengths to accomplish that goal: she has taught herself to read Gallego and Catalan to access articles and books only printed in those languages.

In her 13 years at SJSU, Hernández has published 11 books and catalogs, as well as 46 articles in journals and encyclopedias in four countries. She has curated 45 exhibitions in the United States, Japan, Korea and Spain, and has received 23 honors and awards, including a Fulbright Senior Scholar in Residence Award to do extended research in Spain for her latest book, Singular Spaces: From the Eccentric to the Extraordinary in Spanish Art.

Teaching is a natural extension of her research. “I love working with the students,” she says. “It is so rewarding when I get through to a student by sharing the passion that I have and leading them to ways to discover their own passions. I’ve spent my career trying to break down different barriers in art, and I try to infuse that into my teaching. My goal is to open minds and hearts.”

Michael Eric Dyson to Speak at SJSU

Michael Eric Dyson to Speak at SJSU

Michael Eric Dyson to Speak at SJSU

Named one of the 100 most influential black Americans by Ebony magazine, Dyson is a Georgetown University professor of sociology.

“Are we post-racial, or is racism still a problem?” This question—central to shock waves that rocked campus in response to alleged hate crimes at SJSU—is the topic of an upcoming provocative discussion.

The event will begin at 6 p.m. Feb. 24 in Morris Dailey Auditorium with remarks by Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, a Georgetown University professor of sociology. Admission is free. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. for SJSU students with Tower Card, and 5:45 p.m. for the general public. The event will be streamed live on the web and accessible from the university homepage.

The audience will be encouraged to submit questions in person or via Twitter, using the hashtag #DysonSJSU. The feed will be monitored by a team of students, faculty, staff and administrators who came together in response to the alleged hate crimes. The group is planning a series of events beginning with Dyson, a Detroit native who took an unusual path to becoming one of the nation’s leading African American scholars.

According to his bio, he was a welfare father and factory worker before he began college at age 21. Now an author, minister and political analyst, he bridges academia and pop culture. In addition to penning 17 books, he has appeared in the cartoon strip “The Boondocks,” and been name checked by hip hop legends KRS-1, Black Thought and Nas.


What would Dr. King say?

Bronze bust of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by renowned artist Sascha Schnittmann at King Library (Christina Olivas photo).

Bronze bust of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by renowned artist Sascha Schnittmann at King Library (Christina Olivas photo).

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”—Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

The students of San Jose State have long stood on the frontlines of civic and social justice movements. Over the decades, Spartans have rallied against everything from environmental pollution and unfair wages to chemical weapons and, most famously, racial inequality, as immortalized by the statue of Tommie Smith and John Carlos in their 1968 Olympics Black Power salute. This statue, along with the Cesar Chavez Memorial Arch and the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library, represents the dream of social justice that San Jose State strives to embody.

But, given the recent alleged hate crimes in our residence hall, is true equality still just a dream? With Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day upon us, we’ve turned our ear to the community. Below is a small selection of comments posted on news stories and social media by individuals near and far, along with some of King’s most poignant words.

What do you think King would say today?

“I read that a university freshman was harassed for three months in a dorm community regarding his racial identification, yet the problem was not identified by the university until a parent intervened. I worry that the university is losing the battle of survival in the 21st century.”

-Gerald McMinn, ’72, posted on Washington Square online

King: “The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus characterthat is the goal of true education.”

“Don’t deny him his education. Make him do community service in the inner city.”

Tim Nourie, posted on KTVU Channel 2’s Facebook page 

King: “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.”

“Haven’t any of you people heard of hazing? I am not saying it’s right; hazing is stupid and unnecessary and causes a lot of BS. Despite what I think, it happens. I agree this kid and his accessories should definitely be slapped with some consequences because of what they did. It doesn’t matter if the victim was black and the perpetrators were white. It was people doing stupid things to a person.”

Brianna Marie, posted on KTVU Channel 2’s Facebook page

King: “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”

“Being a blond-haired, blue-eyed, white guy around enough people who assume I probably don’t care for some non-whites and feel free to express their true feelings, I can tell you racism is alive and well in mainstream America. There is still a long fight that needs to be waged, and the fight only gets worse the longer some folks continue to deny that racism is still a factor in America. It is, be embarrassed by it, and don’t perpetuate it by pretending it isn’t.”

Andy, posted on CNN’s website

King: “He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it.”

“Perhaps a little jail time might help…but that costs money and it’s time to stop trying to jail or imprison everyone who doesn’t think like you. Could there perhaps be a teach-in, and allow them to admit they were wrong without resorting to jail or prison? Unless you’re hell-bent on vengeance, I think that’s a better direction to go in.”

Blair Whitney, posted on the Mercury News’ website

King: “I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment, I still have a dream.”

Lou Tully (Karl Nielsen photo)

First and Foremost an Educator

Lou Tully (Karl Nielsen photo)

Lou Tully (Karl Nielsen photo)

Women’s water polo Head Coach Lou Tully, BA ’67, MA ’73 Physical Education, passed away Dec. 17 at the age of 70. He was undergoing treatment for cancer, which he had beaten once before and expected to beat again. Coach Tully was looking forward to his 18th season with San Jose State.

Tributes to his life and legacy are pouring in from across the country,” President Mohammad Qayoumi said. “My heart goes out to all of his players and colleagues, especially those who were looking forward to his return in a few short weeks.”

Lou Tully was first and foremost an educator. He took deep pride in his degrees and teaching credential from San Jose State, encouraging his players to not only excel in class but to compete at the highest levels in athletics. In 1997, his first year as head coach, he took women’s water polo from a club sport to the top 25 nationally. His teams ranked in the top 10 for 12 years, with the 2001 and 2011 teams finishing fifth nationally.

His players understood that he was teaching them far more than how to win in a sport that he described as a combination of ice hockey, basketball, swimming and soccer. In a 2010 Washington Square alumni magazine feature, then co-captain and two-time All-American Adriana Vogt summarized his legacy by saying “what he teaches us as a coach are lessons I’m probably going to keep for the rest of my life.”

A Vietnam veteran, Lou Tully first came to SJSU in 1962 to play on the men’s water polo team. He began his coaching career in 1966 at Menlo Junior College, where he worked with both the water polo and swimming teams. He went on to coach other community college and high school teams, taking Mount Pleasant High School and Leland High School to league championships.

Coach Tully gave generously of his time and talent well beyond the campuses served. He founded San Jose Splash, a club team for junior women’s water polo players, and officiated at just about every level up to the U.S. Senior Men’s and Women’s National Championships.

Services are pending. He is survived by his wife Susan, daughter Megan, son Ian, daughter-in-law Caroline and grandson Chase.