San José State Offers Four Virtual Weeks of Welcome From January 25 – February 26

Students pointing to the SJSU sign on a building while wearing masks.

Photo: Jim Gensheimer / San José State University

Every semester, San José State University hosts Weeks of Welcome programs and events to welcome new and returning students to campus, and provide support for new students as they transition into San José State. This spring, 91 Weeks of Welcome events, hosted by 43 offices and departments, will take place online from January 25 to February 26 to accommodate shelter in place restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Programs are divided into seven categories: academic, campus community, campus resources, career, social justice, Spartan spirit and wellness. Students can log on via the Weeks of Welcome homepage or through the Sammy application.

There are three main pillars behind the Weeks of Welcome (WOW) that align with event categories.

“We want students to connect with the university and their peers to create that sense of belonging, which will hopefully contribute positively to their success and to retention as well,” said Adrienne Jensen-Doray, assistant director of Student Involvement at San José State. “We also want students to be exposed to campus resources; by highlighting those resources and services during Weeks of Welcome, we can provide a foundation for incoming frosh and transfer students who may not know where to look. Finally, we want to focus on student learning, so whether that results in an academic or social justice-themed event, we hope students can engage intellectually, inside and outside of the classroom.”

Following the fall 2020 WOW virtual events, the Weeks of Welcome Working Group disseminated a survey assessment to participating students. Of those surveyed, 83 percent reported that they felt more connected to SJSU, 88 percent learned more about campus resources and 71 percent said that the events encouraged them to stay enrolled. Whether they were engaging in academic panels, career resource workshops or social events, survey data showed that students were hungry for opportunities to interact with their peers, faculty, staff and the greater campus community.

“It’s been really exciting to see the enthusiasm that faculty and staff have when offering these programs, being innovative and creative while figuring out how to shift what they’re doing into the virtual space,” said Jensen-Doray. “We hope that Weeks of Welcome helps students connect with the university and their peers and generates excitement about what it means to be a Spartan.”

“The goal of Weeks of Welcome is always about welcoming our new and returning students to each semester,” said Sonja Daniels, associate vice president of Campus Life. “This fall we were able to launch virtually a very successful program to engage our students and help build that sense of community with others. So whether a social or cultural event, the ability to get academic and resource information or events that support Spartan Pride, we have many events for students to attend virtually. WOW further has become a campus tradition and we are excited for the events we will present this spring!”

The Weeks of Welcome kick off on Monday, January 25, with multiple online events each week through the end of February. While most events are best attended live, some may be available as recordings after they conclude. To register for events and learn more, please visit the Weeks of Welcome website.

Big Dreams for Spring 2015

Just a touch of rain greeted 30,000 Spartans heading to campus for the first week of spring term 2015.

This includes 500 new transfer students and 450 new graduate students making the transition to SJSU.

It’s time to dream big, with everyone is settling into new classes in hopes of earning good grades.

Check out the new student success centers and growing Student Academic Success Services staff, along with Ask Me tables across campus.

Of course friends can help, too. Many of our over 400 student organizations are recruiting new members outdoors this week.

The discussion continues on how to help San Jose State become an even more welcoming community.

Famed Princeton Professor Cornel West, author of “Race Matters,” will speak at April 9. You might remember him from “The Matrix” movies.

Spring term ends with Honors Convocation and Commencement. Finally, all that hard work pays off for more than 7,000 new grads.

Does this include you? Claim your place in history and enter a drawing for a $10,000 scholarship for you or someone of your choice.

List your profile on the CSU Class of 3 Million yearbook. This major milestone signifies the huge influence our alumni have in shaping California.

It’s true SJSU students and alumni are excelling every day in many ways. There are lots of reasons to be a proud Spartan!

The New York Times: E-Sports at College, With Stars and Scholarships

Posted Dec. 8, 2013 by The New York Times.

Loc Tran is a big man on campus at San Jose State University in Northern California.

“A lot of people stop me when I’m walking,” said Mr. Tran, a 19-year-old sophomore, who speaks in quick and confident bursts. “They congratulate me.”

But Mr. Tran is not a star on the football team, or a leader in student government. He is a top player on the school’s competitive video game team, helping San Jose State claw its way to victory in June over California State University, Fullerton, in a tournament watched online by nearly 90,000 people. When the new school year started this fall, classmates’ heads swiveled toward him when professors said his name during roll call.

“I thought that was pretty cool,” Mr. Tran said.

Video game competitions, also known as e-sports, have taken off on campuses across the country, including Harvard and Florida State University. More than 10,000 students now play in the biggest college league, 4,400 more than last year and 4,600 more than the number of men who play on Division I college basketball teams.

Read the full story.

Spartans Best Dance Crew

Entertainment and service go hand-in-hand for Delta Sigma Phi fraternity members, who organized this unique competition showcasing local talent in order to raise over $4,500 for Smile Train. Preparations began months ago. The event was held Nov. 1 in Morris Dailey Auditorium. Read more on the results and this year’s first place team, Attack of Piepan.

Dance Crew Contest Supports Smile Train

Dance Crew Contest Supports Smile Train

Dance Crew Contest Supports Smile Train

Spartans Best Dance Crew, an award winning example of the philanthropic events sponsored by San Jose State’s fraternity and sororities, is back for a second year.

More than a dozen student crews will showcase their best dance choreography 7 p.m. Nov. 1 in Morris Dailey Auditorium. Created by students and organizations, these groups will perform their best choreography before an audience including a panel of judges.

The event is organized by Delta Sigma Phi as a fundraiser for The Smile Train, which provides free cleft surgery to hundreds of thousands of poor children in developing countries, helping the children eat and speak properly.

Last year, Spartans Best Dance Crew raised more than $3,000. This year, the fraternity’s goal is $5,000. Tickets are on sale now at the Event Center ($8 pre-sale, $10 at the door).

SJSU Campus

10 Reasons to be a Proud Spartan

SJSU Campus

Soon to be at your service: a new student health center, an expanded Student Union and an updated SPX (Christina Olivas photo).

1. You’re in good company. This fall, we’re expecting 31,300 enrolled students, including 3,700 first-time freshmen, 3,700 new transfers, 2,000 new graduate students and 2,000 new and returning international students.

2. Our faculty members are the finest, including 26 new tenure-track instructors across the disciplines, from design to psychology to cybersecurity.

3. We’re building 21st century spaces. Phase 1 of the Student Union is near completion. Mojo Burger anyone? Coming soon: A new Student Health and Counseling Center and an updated Spartan Complex.

4. We power Silicon Valley. Check out these Spartans at Work and visit the SJSU Career Center to start your job search.

5. We are making it easier to get classes when you need them, offering online courses for credit from other CSU campuses.

6. We’re helping and caring. Need a hand? Just ask students, faculty and staff wearing an “Ask Me” button.

7. With more than 400 clubs, we offer something for everyone. Learn more at Fall Welcome Days, including the Student Organization Fair Aug. 28 on Tower Lawn.

8. We’re going green. Check out the EcoPass, bike share and car share programs.

9. We can dance!

10. We’re connected on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest, plus we offer safety updates via text messages through Alert SJSU.

Celebrating SJSU’s Student Leaders

SJSU Student Leadership Gala

At the Student Leadership Awards Gala May 1, honors will include the Vice President for Student Affairs Award for Exemplary Leadership

“The SJSU Student Leadership Gala: Honoring Those Who Make a Difference” will begin at 5:30 p.m. May 1 in Morris Dailey Auditorium. This event is free and open to the public. The awards include outstanding organization, outstanding program, excellent collaborative programming, most creative marketing, student organization advisor of the year, student organization member of the year, the A.S. 55 Faces of the Future awards, the president’s award and (this is the big one) the Vice President for Student Affairs Award for Exemplary Leadership and Service. Event organizers include Student Involvement, Associated Students and the Solidarity Network, comprised of the MOSAIC Cross Cultural Center, Student Health Center Wellness & Health Promotion, A.S. Cesar E. Chavez Community Action Center, LGBT Resource Center, and Women’s Resource Center. Learn more about the event and the nominees.

10th Annual Student Leadership Conference Seeks Presenters

10th Annual Student Leadership Conference Seeks Presenters

The Student Leadership Conference educates student attendees through a series of workshops to develop the tools and skills to contribute to and improve their student organizations and themselves (Student Involvement photo).

By Rich Dillon, Assistant Director for Leadership Development

The 10th annual Student Leadership Conference will take place on Saturday, October 6, 2012, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Leadership Conference educates student attendees through a series of workshops to develop the tools and skills to contribute to and improve their student organizations and themselves. Student leader profiles represent both emerging leaders and experienced leaders. The Student Leadership Conference aims to help students build relationships and connections to the campus community. Connecting student leaders to staff, faculty, alumni, and community members provides a valuable leadership and learning experience. The Student Involvement office would like to invite you to join this growing student leadership network as a presenter for this year’s conference. With nearly 400 student organizations on campus sending delegates and (for the first time) an open invitation to the entire campus student population to register and attend we are aiming for attendance to exceed 800! We are seeking educational workshops that build leadership skills in the following conference competencies:

  • Personal Growth
  • Professionalism
  • Community Involvement
  • Organization Development

If you would like to present a workshop, please fill out this interest form. Here’s more information on the conference itself.

New Spartans Make Campus Connections at "Fall Welcome Days" Aug. 20 - Sept. 8

New Spartans Make Campus Connections at "Fall Welcome Days" Aug. 20 – Sept. 8

New Spartans Make Campus Connections at "Fall Welcome Days" Aug. 20 - Sept. 8

The Spartan Squad Kickoff 6 p.m. Sept. 6 in the Campus Village Quad is part of “Fall Welcome Days.”

By Pat Lopes Harris, Media Relations Director

New Spartans will once again be invited to participate in Fall Welcome Days, an annual series of exciting social and academic programs. The events are designed to provide all incoming students with opportunities to make connections with fellow students, staff, faculty and the surrounding community, as well as to become more familiar with campus resources and opportunities. The Fall Welcome Days Kickoff begins at 3 p.m. Aug. 21 on Tower Lawn, replacing the Welcome Convocation of years past. The kickoff will be a great place for students to meet people and learn about various departments and organizations while enjoying free food, attractions, games and live performances. Among the many more Fall Welcome Days events are an On-Campus Job Fair 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Aug. 23 in the Art Quad; the Fall Student Organization Fair 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Aug. 29 on the Paseo de San Carlos; and the Spartan Squad Kickoff 6 p.m. Sept. 6 in the Campus Village Quad. The Fall Welcome Days series is among SJSU’s Orientation and Transition Programs produced by the Office of Student Involvement within the Division of Student Affairs.

Check out a full list of events.

Truong Tu playing table tennis.

Spartan Table Tennis Team Ranked Fourth in the Nation

Trung Tu playing table tennis.

Truong Tu at the 2011 Concord Open tournament (Truong Tu image).

By Pat Lopes Harris, Media Relations Director

Table tennis is hot in the South Bay, including San Jose State, where the nationally ranked Spartan Table Tennis Club is preparing for national championships April 13-15 in Plano, Texas.

The National Collegiate Table Tennis Association is promising live online streaming of all the action, as the no. 4 ranked Spartans take the floor. SJSU’s co-ed team includes Truong Tu, ranked no. 8 in the nation for men’s singles.

Completing the roster are Sean Lee, Sally Su, Joseph Coorey, Kyle Wong and Mitchell Ong. The Spartan Table Tennis Club is one of over 250 organizations coordinated by SJSU’s Student Involvement office.

Growing up in Ho Chi Minh City, Tu started playing table tennis when he was just six years old, according to the NCTTA. He trained intensely, and was ranked among the Top 12 Viet Juniors in 2001.

Now going for an MBA, Tu joined SJSU’s team after moving to the United States for college, graduating in December 2010 with a bachelor’s in marketing.

Rich Kelley and Cheryl Vargas sit around a table with SJSU students surrounded by trees at the 2010 A.S. Retreat.

Growth In Clubs and Organizations Creates New Campus Vibe

By Ryan Whitchurch, Public Affairs Assistant

students gathered around in a circle listening to Blake Balajadia present at the Fraternal Values Summit in 2011.

Blake Balajadia presents to students at the 2011 Fraternal Values Summit.

The moment he stepped onto campus in fall 2008, Cesar Delgadillo, a fourth-year design studies major, felt a sense of pride for San Jose State University based on his freshmen orientation experience.

“I remember seeing the connection all of the orientation leaders had with one another,” said Delgadillo. “This made me want to get more involved so that I could have similar connections during my college career, and I’m happy that I did.”

The next year, Delgadillo applied to become a Frosh Orientation leader and was granted the position. Since acquiring this role, Delgadillo has joined a number of other campus organizations that he feels have helped him become more comfortable with himself and his leadership capabilities.

Today at SJSU, the number of students involved on campus is on the rise, creating a spike in the number of campus clubs and organizations and some impressive participation numbers. Associate Director of Student Involvement Emily Bauer says the unprecedented amount of students getting involved is creating a shift in campus culture.

“When I came in 2007, it seemed like people just went about their business and went home,” Bauer said. “These days, we have seen an increase in participation in all programs making SJSU a destination campus that students want to come to.”

In 2006, there were 225 on-campus organizations at SJSU. Today there are 359 student organizations, and Bauer expects this number will grow to around 400 organizations by the end of the year.

“On campus today there’s a different feeling,” said Blake Balajadia, assistant director for fraternity and sorority life. “the university is coming alive like never before.”

Students that get involved in a campus club, organization, leadership role or Greek life reap plenty of benefits, Balajadia said. Building a greater connection to SJSU propels students towards graduation and establish networks that may help them secure a job after graduation, he said.

“I always urge students to take a chance and check out a club or event that interests them,”  Balajadia said, “If all you walk out of this university with is a piece of paper, you’re really missing out.”

San Jose State is also making sure new Spartans connect with the university from their first day on campus. SJSU’s Frosh Orientation, a mandatory overnight program for incoming freshmen, is setting a new standard for students and is a driving force behind the increasing involvement trends.

“This past summer, the Frosh Orientation program, served nearly 4,300 students and 1,600 family members,” said Director of Student Involvement Richard Kelley.

Kelley said this year’s summer program had the largest class to date and received its highest evaluation and assessment scores in its 10-year history. A turning points in creating more campus pride began with increased support from former President Don Kassing.

“He made creating a sense of connection and pride at SJSU a priority,” Kelley said. “It was only when engagement and involvement became priorities that our campus could see change.”

Five years later, an increase in enrollment paired with a shift in campus participation from students hungrier to get more involved has SJSU’s campus life flourishing.

“There is a bigger sense of community on campus. I would say it just feels different and it feels great!” Bauer said. “People are excited to be here and want to make the most of their time at SJSU.”

Students can learn more about the organizations on campus and how to get involved by visiting, or attending an event for an on campus club or organization.

Young man and woman carrying a sign and collection box.

Student Groups Seek to Collect $911 for 9/11 Victims

Young man and woman carrying a sign and collection box.

Two student groups are seeking to raise $911 for 9/11 victims.

By Pat Lopes Harris, Media Relations Director

Not only will they always remember where they were on September 11, 2001, but they will also recall what they did ten years later to help those affected by the attacks. Last week, social fraternity Delta Sigma Phi joined with service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega to collect $911 during tabling events near the Event Center. The two groups plan to send all donations to the New York Police and Fire Widows’ and Children’s Benefit Fund. Earlier this year, Delta Sigma Phi collected $840 for the Japan earthquake and tsumani relief effort. “We want to reach out and help those affected, and help people reflect,” President Peter Do said. For more information, please email Peter Do.

Students prepare for kayak trip.

Fall Welcome Days Aug. 21-Sept. 17 Help Students Make Campus Connections

Students prepare for kayak trip.

Among the many events planned for Fall Welcome Days is a kayak trip.

By Pat Lopes Harris, Media Relations Director

Fall Welcome Days, held this year from August 21 through September 17, is a series of exciting social and academic programs designed to provide all incoming students with opportunities to make connections with fellow students, staff, faculty, and the surrounding community, as well as to become more familiar with campus resources and opportunities. The Fall Welcome Convocation will begin at 4 p.m. Aug 23 at the Event Center. An On-Campus Job Fair, Student Success Fair, Community Connections Fair, and Fall Student Organization Fair will be held on the San Carlos Plaza. The fall 2011 Campus Reading Program selection, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot, will be discussed, and students, faculty and staff will have several opportunities to view Lacks’ cancerous cells, taken without her knowledge in 1951, then sold many times over for research while her family struggled to afford health insurance. Students will also have the opportunity to explore international programs, audition for SJSU choirs, hear about “All You Ever Wanted To Know About College, But Were Afraid To Ask,” and join hiking and kayaking trips off campus. View a detailed events schedule.