SJSU IT Budget Update: 04/15/24

Dear Colleagues,

At the Budget Town Hall last month, Vice President for Administration and Finance and CFO Charlie Faas shared a presentation which stated that every division needed to make a 6% budget cut for the 2024-2025 fiscal year to balance the university’s structural budget deficit.

Your IT leadership team and I take this situation very seriously. We acknowledge that this is a substantive cut, in addition to cuts every division has made over the past few years. President Teniente-Matson has emphasized that we are not just trying to balance our budget but build a financially sustainable budget model.

Despite these financial difficulties, everyone on the IT team continues to work hard and passionately to support the CSU, the university, our students, and the campus community. I thank you for your dedication to SJSU IT’s customers and your commitment to elevating the SJSU community through technology.

We have accomplished many great things together, and with some adjustments, we can do even more as a team to support this brilliant and innovative institution.  I am looking at this latest round of budget cuts as an exciting opportunity for us as a division.

Let me explain. Over the past few months, your leadership team and I have been examining SJSU IT’s cost structure to tighten our belts and enhance operational efficiency. In the process, we have prioritized a key component — our team.

After obtaining input from your leadership team and consulting with the SJSU IT Peer Consultation Group to ensure staff feedback remains represented in our decision-making process, we made the tough decision to eliminate another 15 vacant staff and MPP positions, a total of 25 positions this fiscal year. This effort will significantly help reduce the university’s budget deficit in FY 24-25, and, at the same time, it will open the door to growth opportunities for our existing employees. We are expanding our professional development initiatives, external training, and cross-pollination programs to help you grow and continue to succeed in SJSU IT. In the next few weeks, we will share the IT skills the university ultimately needs to achieve its strategy and vision, and we will work collaboratively with you to help you leverage or develop those needed skills.

Additionally, we are committed to implementing new technology solutions to improve productivity, communication, and collaboration, which will help students succeed while increasing employee experience.

As we navigate this period of uncertainty and transition to a new operating structure that enables SJSU’s growth and longevity, it is very important that you feel supported and appreciated. Please talk to your manager or me to share your thoughts, ask questions, and offer suggestions. I will continue to communicate with you as we learn more. I am also available during my weekly open office hours (Thursdays from 2–4 p.m.). Please feel free to reach out to Lin ( to schedule a time.

Thank you for your collaborative and constructive comments. I remain gratified by the immense loyalty and dedication of so many in our division. I am confident that we will emerge from this process a stronger and more efficient team.


Happy Thanksgiving

Dear Colleagues,

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, and I’m so thankful for everything we’ve accomplished together this year in support of our university and its students. Thank you for your hard work and for making SJSU and SJSU IT such an amazing place to be.

I want to wish all of you a happy Thanksgiving full of appreciation, warmth, and safety. Enjoy the long weekend, and I hope you get to spend time with your closest friends and loved ones.

Happy Thanksgiving,


National IT Professionals Day


I want to take a moment to say thank you to everyone in SJSU IT for your dedication and commitment. Today is National IT Professionals Day. It’s a day for organizations to recognize their IT departments, such as the posts on San Jose State University’s Facebook page and Instagram.

Thanks to your hard work supporting our university and our students, SJSU is one of the most innovative universities in the country. Your devotion to our mission of service, your camaraderie with each other, and your constant ability to go above and beyond are what make SJSU IT such an amazing place to be.

So, to everyone in our division: Thank you. You are what makes working here special.

Thank you,

Division-wide Microaggression Workshop


The SJSU IT DEI Committee has partnered with the SJSU Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (ODEI) to provide microaggression workshops for our entire division. This workshop was attended by division MPPs last year. It was highly engaging and resonated with the culture of inclusivity we’re building. I want to thank the DEI Committee for recommending we partner with ODEI and expand the workshops to all staff – extra kudos to DEI committee members Ryan Campbell and Maggie Panahi for spearheading this effort. Thanks to the DEI committee’s work, we’ll be the first division in the university to offer an ODEI workshop division-wide.

The workshop reviews the science behind microaggressions, cognitive empathy, and bias pathways in our thinking within our relationships in the workplace. It explores and emphasizes our roles in developing an actively inclusive climate. It also addresses concerns identified by employees in the SJSU Campus Climate and Belonging work and assessments. Workshops will be available during five sessions so that everyone will have the opportunity to attend.

Workshop Date RSVP Deadline
May 4, 2023 April 27, 2023
May 11, 2023 May 4, 2023
June 1, 2023 May 25, 2023
June 22, 2023 June 15, 2023
July 20, 2023 July 13, 2023

I strongly encourage everyone to attend this workshop – please work with your area’s senior leader to determine which session works best for you and your team.

Thank you

Congratulations, 2022 Sparta Award Winners

One of my favorite messages to send all year is this one, announcing the winners of the SJSU IT Sparta Awards. These awards are given to SJSU IT staff, who embody our collaborative spirit, commitment to innovation, and everyday leadership. Nominees are submitted through an open process, and I get feedback on each candidate from the SJSU IT Peer Consultation Group. This award is given by your coworkers and teammates. For 2022, we had more nominees than in the award‘s history, which truly shows our culture of mutual respect and pride. It’s truly my pleasure to share this year’s winners with you.

The 2022 SJSU IT Individual Sparta Award goes to Mona Hall. Last year, Mona spearheaded projects in OnBase, collaborating with other departments to streamline processes across the university. A prime example is her work on the “Forms Portal,” where she added a feature that auto-filled student data into Admissions and Records OnBase forms. Previously, students self-reported things like names, ID, and other academic information. This meant there were lots of errors and inaccuracies that needed to be identified and cleared up manually. Now forms are more detailed than ever, routed to the correct destination quicker, and with little or no corrections necessary. What’s more, this is an automation that can be built upon further in the future.

The 2022 SJSU IT Team Sparta Award goes to the PeopleSoft Upgrade Team: Ryan Campbell; Harish Chander; Steve Chang; Donovan D’Anna; Cuong Doan; Joseph Hotchkiss; Mitesh Kini; Rashmi Kumar; Janice Lew; Eric Matthews; An H Nguyen; Atul Pala; Peter Pham; Marco Scardina; Brenden Sparks; Ivelina Stoyanova; Jeffrey Tan; Jocelyn Tom; Andrew Trembley; Lam Vu; Jane Wang; and Andrew Weiglein.

Implementing an upgrade to PeopleSoft impacts almost every user on campus. So, when early planning began for a necessary update to MySJSU (including PeopleTools and Appsian), this team collaborated with dozens of campus units to ensure everything went smoothly on the Go Live weekend of September 23rd to 26th. The IT teams performed setup, troubleshooting, and coordinated testing for hundreds of pages, over 50 integrations, and a new interface and menu structure for MySJSU. These simultaneous projects (in addition to regular support and the AWS infrastructure changes) represent a significant accomplishment for the university and campus community.

Thank you to all the winners for your incredible effort. And of course, thank you to everyone who took the time to submit nominations and lend support to your colleagues. And thank you to the SJSU IT Peer Consultation Group for their insight on the candidates and continued support of the awards as a whole.

Please join me in congratulating this year’s winners!

Best regards,