bricks and ivy

SJSU Moves to End Local Area Guarantee for Admissions

Dr. Mohammad Qayoumi

Dr. Mohammad Qayoumi

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

SAN JOSE, CA – President Mohammad Qayoumi has decided to proceed with plans to end San Jose State’s local area guarantee effective fall 2013. This means SJSU will no longer accept all CSU-eligible applicants, including some from Santa Clara County high schools and community colleges. The changes come after a series of heavily attended public hearings, and in the wake of severe budget cuts.

“This situation is caused by the failure of our elected officials in Sacramento to adequately fund the CSU in general and SJSU in particular,” Qayoumi said. “We Californians have failed to make the hard but important decisions to invest in the future of our youth.”

San Jose State will maintain a local area preference in the form of a lower admissions threshold for local applicants to the catch-all, undeclared major. SJSU will require all applicants to select first and second choice majors. Local applicants not admitted to their majors will be eligible for, but no longer guaranteed, admission as undeclared.

“Historically, San Jose State accepted all eligible Californians,” Qayoumi said. “SJSU began limiting admissions in 2009 for students from outside our community, but maintained a local guarantee for CSU-eligible applicants. Steep budget cuts have left SJSU no other choice but to reduce enrollment in the most fair and equitable ways possible.”

A new program known as “Spartan Pathways” will serve CSU-eligible undergraduates who do not meet the SJSU-minimum admission criteria. At least 100 enrollment slots will be provided to local applicants. SJSU will also re-double efforts to move continuing students toward graduation, in response to concerns raised at the public hearings.

“Continuing students who do not achieve adequate progress-to-degree hinder the university’s ability to admit new students,” Qayoumi said. “Stated simply, in a flat enrollment environment that is known to be a zero-sum game, every continuing student occupies a slot that is unavailable to a newly admitted applicant.”

President Qayoumi will submit the new admissions guidelines to the California State University Chancellor Charles B. Reed for his approval. The chancellor will report his decision to the CSU Board of Trustees. The guidelines will provide SJSU with tools to reduce enrollment, but this reduction does not need to be permanent.

“Let me reiterate that this unfortunate situation is primarily caused by a lack of adequate funding by the state,” Qayoumi said. “This also means that Sacramento can ameliorate the situation. In other words, if the state funds SJSU adequately, then SJSU will open its doors to all CSU-eligible California residents. After all, SJSU belongs to all Californians.”

Read more on the proposed admissions changes.

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San José State — 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.