State of the University Address and Strategic Plan Announcement

Media contact: Robin McElhatton, SJSU media relations specialist, 408-924-1749,

San Jose State will live stream President Mary Papazian’s inaugural State of the University address and formal announcement of SJSU’s strategic plan noon to 1 p.m. Monday, April 8, 2019.

Visit the relaunched strategic plan website to learn more.

SJSU Students to Receive Full-Tuition Scholarships funded by $1 Million Samsung Gift

Photo: Orbie Pullen

Samsung CEO Oh-Hyun Kwon, SJSU President Susan Martin and San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo (photo: Orbie Pullen).

Samsung presented San Jose State University Interim President Susan Martin and San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo with a $50,000 gift on Sept. 24, making SJSU the first recipient of $1 million in scholarships to be awarded to California’s public universities.

“San Jose State wishes to thank Samsung for supporting our efforts to prepare students for careers in the tech industry,” Interim President Susan Martin said. “SJSU sends more graduates to work in Silicon Valley companies than any other university, and this gift is an excellent example of SJSU’s collaboration with area employers.”

The company made the gift to the Charles W. Davidson College of Engineering, with the intention of covering tuition and living expenses for two students this year. Details on the selection process are in the works.

The announcement came as Samsung celebrated the grand-opening of its 1.1-million-square foot headquarters in North San Jose for its U.S. semiconductor operations.

Read the Samsung news release.

SJSU’s Accreditation Reaffirmed

WASC noted SJSU presented "a detailed and organized approach to describe assessment" of five core competencies, with a special focus on information literacy and writing (photo by Christina Olivas).

In a letter reaffirming the university’s accreditation, WASC noted SJSU presented a detailed and organized approach to describing assessment of five core competencies, with a special focus on information literacy and writing.

Media contact:
Pat Harris, SJSU Media Relations Director, 408-924-1748

SAN JOSE, CA – The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) has reaffirmed San Jose State University’s accreditation for seven years.

Continue reading

Update: Message from the Tower Foundation Board

Tower Foundation board chair, Silicon Valley entrepreneur, and Lucas College and Graduate School of Business graduate Amir Mashkoori confirmed that the board has received and accepted the resignation of board member Wanda Ginner.

“The fact that Wanda agreed to step down reflects genuine concern for the university and her desire to avoid being a distraction,” Mashkoori said. “The comments attributed to Wanda do not reflect the Tower Foundation board’s commitment to diversity, inclusivity and mutual respect.”

A graduate of SJSU’s business school and longtime CPA, Ginner has been actively involved with numerous university initiatives including an annual business plan competition awarding cash prizes to young entrepreneurs.

The board will redouble efforts to engage with the SJSU community through its members, a diverse group of students, faculty, administrators and alumni.

“The board plans to implement new procedures and participate in training to guide our interactions with all university stakeholders,” Mashkoori said.

“Many board members are alumni, all of whom want students to receive the same opportunities provided to board members when they were in college.”

“We have worked hard to be able to give back, we should be role models for the campus community and general public, and most importantly, we should celebrate our diversity by making the university a welcoming environment for all.”

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.

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.

# # #

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.

Provost Resigns to Accept Position at CSU Dominguez Hills

Provost Resigns, Accepts New CSU Position

Ellen Junn

Ellen Junn

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

Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Ellen Junn has accepted an offer to become provost at California State University, Dominguez Hills. Her last day at SJSU will be Jan. 17.

“I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to everyone in the SJSU community,” Junn said.

It has been a joy getting to know and work with so many wonderful colleagues and students here. The opportunity to return to Southern California to be near my family has been a critical factor in my decision.”

“While I am very saddened to leave this remarkable campus, I know San Jose State has the strength and integrity to flourish,” she continued. “I will miss you all and send you my warmest wishes for a continued and bright future.”

Prior to coming to San Jose, Junn served at CSU Fresno, where she established a center for the advancement of teaching and learning, reconfigured academic technology, and secured WASC accreditation and approval for a variety of new graduate, doctoral, international and online degree programs.

“San Jose State has gained much from Ellen’s passion for fostering student success,” President Mohammad Qayoumi said.

Arriving at SJSU in January 2012, Junn re-energized SJSU’s graduation rate initiative, developed the university’s academic plan through 2017, and established departmental grants designed to improve retention and graduation rates while supporting new methods of teaching and learning.

Qayoumi has begun seeking input on a succession plan, and will name an interim provost prior to Junn’s departure.


President’s Update: An Independent Review of the Facts

President Qayoumi names Judge LaDoris H. Cordell to lead a task force that will review all the facts and propose recommendations for nurturing a safe, welcoming, tolerant community. (Photo: Christina Olivas)

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.

Dear Spartans,
I’m touching base to share additional information about the efforts to move the campus forward toward healing and recovery from the alleged race-related incident that occurred this fall in one of our residence halls.

Last week, I promised to initiate an independent review of the facts.  I’m pleased to report that Judge LaDoris H. Cordell (retired) has agreed to lead a special task force that will have two goals:

  1. Review all of the facts.
  2. Propose recommendations for ensuring that San Jose State is a safe, welcoming, tolerant community.

Judge Cordell served the Superior Court of California, County of Santa Clara, for 19 years before becoming the independent police auditor for the City of San Jose in 2010. Throughout her career, Judge Cordell has sought to give a voice to the unheard. I am grateful that she is willing and available to serve in this critical role.

The work of the special task force will be informed by an independent fact-finding effort. Myron “Mike” D. Moye, a partner at law firm Hanson Bridgett LLP, has been retained to conduct the fact-finding effort and produce a report that will be presented to the special task force. Moye has extensive experience in cases involving harassment, discrimination, ethics and regulatory compliance.

The fact finding will begin immediately and seeks to:

  1. Determine, to the extent possible, what happened, when it happened, and who the alleged perpetrators are.
  2. Determine when and how the campus knew of the alleged incident, or should have known of it.
  3. Determine how and when the campus administration responded to the alleged incident.
  4. Determine whether the campus or any of its employees violated any existing campus or systemwide policies in responding to the alleged incident.  Determine the extent to which such policies, procedures and practices were followed.

Moye has been asked to produce his report by January 31, 2014. The special task force will receive the report and begin its work in February, and issue a final public report by April 30. Task force members will include a diverse mixture of SJSU students, faculty and staff members and alumni; subject-matter experts within the California State University; and community members.  Its membership will be finalized by January 15.

Let me also update you on two related matters.

As many of you know, San Jose State has undertaken previous efforts to make diversity an intentional, holistic element of our teaching and learning mission. In spring 2013, we solicited nominations for a Commission on Diversity. Its members were appointed in August 2013 and the group met for the first time this fall. The commission will meet again this month and will have the opportunity to consider the recommendations of the special task force in its work going forward.

In an earlier message to you, I outlined plans for a forum on racial intolerance to be held on campus in the first two weeks of December. After consultation with student groups, we are postponing this event to early next year in order to maximize participation. We need students to play a prominent role in planning the gathering, and there is insufficient time to do this now as they are preparing for final exams.

I appreciate the many ways our community has responded in the last two weeks.  Much work lies ahead.  A website summarizing all relevant reports, updates and messages has been established. Please continue to reach out to me, and to one another.

Mohammad Qayoumi

President’s Update: Holding Ourselves Accountable

University Housing Campus Village

“We will re-examine our diversity programs and safety measures within campus housing and throughout the university.” —President Qayoumi (Photo: Christina Olivas)

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.

Dear Spartans,

When I expressed outrage last Thursday at the race-based abuse and mistreatment of an African-American SJSU freshman by several suite mates, I did not clearly express our accountability for what he endured.

By failing to recognize the meaning of a Confederate flag, intervene earlier to stop the abuse, or impose sanctions as soon as the gravity of the behavior became clear, we failed him. I failed him.

How such abuse could have gone unchecked or undetected for weeks is being methodically untangled, as it must. An independent expert will soon be named to lead a task force that will examine the facts, our policies and practices, and propose reforms.

Some anger is being directed toward residence hall advisers (RAs) for failing to recognize or act on warning signs of abuse. It is our job as professional educators to help them recognize these signs. Their failures are our failures. We must do a better job of training them, and we will.

If our housing and student disciplinary policies and processes are inadequate or not followed, it is up to us as administrators to ensure that they work, or fix them.

Now, let me update you on specifically what we have done and are doing:

  • Sunday night, SJSU faculty leaders and administrators, including housing staff, met with students in the Dining Commons. I heard plenty of pain, anger and confusion, questions about our commitment to diversity, and pleas to be included in future decisions.
  • As I shared on Friday, the San Jose/Silicon Valley chapter of the NAACP will be on campus at noon today in front of the Smith/Carlos sculpture to express dissatisfaction with pending criminal charges and ask for a full examination of this incident.

I will participate in this event, and encourage you to attend if you can. The abusive conduct that occurred in this case should be punished, to the fullest extent that the law allows.

  • We will continue listening. More sessions with students are in the works and an open campus forum will take place during the first two weeks of December.
  • Additional training for RAs is being planned. Details will follow soon.
  • We have begun reaching out to candidates to serve on the external task force. If you have suggestions, please send them to

Mohammad Qayoumi

President’s Update: Listening, Learning

President Qayoumi’s update to the campus community following the alleged hate crimes in SJSU’s student housing complex. A website summarizing all relevant reports, updates and messages has been established.

“This deeply disturbing incident reaffirms that we must protect and steward our values. I am proud of all who marched in support of them.” —President Qayoumi (Photo: Brandon Chew)

Dear Spartans,

I want to update you on our actions since yesterday (Thursday, Nov. 21) when criminal arrest warrants were issued for several SJSU students accused of racially-motivated hate crimes against a fellow student and residence hall suite-mate.

First, a fourth SJSU student has been suspended in connection with this incident. His actions came to light recently in the course of several ongoing investigations.

Second, I met Friday morning with the Reverend Jethroe Moore, president of the San Jose/Silicon Valley Chapter of the NAACP. Reverend Moore and I agreed to several actions:

• Appearing together at a noon press conference on Mon., Nov. 25, in front of the Smith/Carlos sculpture to discuss pending criminal charges.

• Co-hosting a campus forum during the first two weeks of December, inviting community input about racial tolerance at SJSU and beginning a dialogue on how to heal rifts.

• Offering a spring 2014 lecture series on issues of diversity and tolerance.

While these efforts move forward, we are undertaking a comprehensive review of SJSU’s student code of conduct. Our goal is including race-based misconduct in existing zero-tolerance student conduct policies.

Third, we will review all of our practices and policies related to preserving and protecting the well being of students. This work has already begun. I have asked for a report by Dec. 15, and we will share it with you.

I will continue to keep you updated.


Mohammad Qayoumi

President’s Update: Racial Intolerance

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.

Dear Spartans,

As many of you know, the Santa Clara County district attorney’s office has filed criminal charges against three San Jose State students accused of recurrent abusive behavior toward a fellow student in their residence hall suite this fall.

Let me be clear: I am outraged and saddened by these allegations. They are utterly inconsistent with our long cherished history of tolerance, respect for diversity and personal civility. The three students suspected of this conduct have been suspended, effective today.

The misdemeanor battery charges include a hate-crime enhancement based on indications that the victim, an African-American freshman, was targeted based on race. I want you to know how San Jose State has responded thus far, and our intentions moving forward.

Our paramount initial concern was the safety of the victimized student. The day our housing staff learned of the situation, the University Police Department launched an investigation. Also that day, two of the accused students were relocated to separate residence halls and not placed with roommates.

A third suite-mate, originally believed to be a bystander, was identified yesterday as an offender. We regret he was not removed from the victim’s suite before today.

Parallel internal inquiries, one based on university student conduct policies and another focused on federal anti-discrimination regulations, are ongoing.

We speak very directly to all freshmen about discrimination and harassment during orientation and at hall meetings. We will re-examine our diversity programs and safety measures within campus housing and throughout the university.

Diversity and a commitment to social justice are in SJSU’s institutional DNA. Our library is named for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; many of us pass daily by the sculpture of Tommie Smith and John Carlos or under the Cesar E. Chavez Arch. This deeply disturbing incident reaffirms that we must protect and steward our values. I am proud of all who marched today in support of them.

I know many of you will have questions and concerns. Please feel free to
contact my office


Mohammad Qayoumi

President Qayoumi and students

President Qayoumi’s Statement: November 18 Academic Senate Meeting

President Qayoumi and students

“I am hopeful that today’s Senate conversation, and others to come, will bring us closer together and help us exceed our individual and collective aspirations,” President Qayoumi said.

President Mohammad Qayoumi shared the following statement with the campus community following an Academic Senate discussion on Nov. 18 about SJSU’s governance:

Late Monday afternoon, our Academic Senate approved a resolution asking the Chancellor’s Office to initiate a review of university governance.

As a community, let us do all we can to support the Chancellor’s Office in responding to this request.

San Jose State’s tradition of shared governance is embodied in its Academic Senate, where elected faculty, staff, student, administrative and alumni representatives discuss and debate important issues.

Today’s Senate discussion revealed a desire for more transparency about our priorities and explored questions about some aspects of university governance.

San Jose State — indeed, California’s entire public higher education system — has coped for the last half decade with unstable, unpredictable public support. We all know that these economic conditions and related factors have impacted students and their families, and our capacity to serve them.

Since 2011, we have confronted these issues while laying a foundation for a stable, bright future. Together, we have faced and surmounted some tough challenges, including erasing a structural budget deficit of $32 million. Other challenges remain, but I believe we are on the right track.

As I said during the meeting, communication is the basis for effective governance. I am hopeful that today’s Senate conversation, and others to come, will bring us closer together and help us exceed our individual and collective aspirations.