Excited to be a Spartan!

I hope everyone enjoyed the long holiday weekend.

I’ve been at SJSU now for nearly three weeks, and what a wonderful introduction it has been!

As I continue to meet with members of our campus community—both in professional settings but also as casual, informal opportunities present themselves—I wanted to share with you my growing excitement about serving as SJSU interim president. This initial period on campus has only reinforced why I was so humbled and enthusiastic when CSU Chancellor Castro selected me for the role.

For me, this job opportunity has always been about mission—the CSU’s mission and, specifically, the mission of San José State. Though every CSU campus, of course, has its own character, challenges and people, SJSU’s deliberate, intentional focus on delivering life-changing educational experiences to its students is one I find incredibly inspiring.

So being part of a university that was recognized by Money magazine as the Most Transformative University in the nation is a great honor as well as an overarching responsibility. It has made me eager to come to work each day, and I’ve been exploring every inch of the 90 acres of our lovely campus while learning more about our community and what everyone is doing to support our students and each other. I’m impressed, in particular, by the quality and dedication of our faculty and staff, and it’s going to be a pleasure working with this team of professionals. 

Steve Perez walking with colleagues

Photo by Robert Bain/San José State University

There’s also something very special about being here in Silicon Valley, the global center of innovation. It’s great to see how connected the university is with the City, this region, and the broader tech community, though I imagine this was no accident. I know that building those kinds of relationships and partnerships takes a lot of time, effort and resources. I’m confident we’ll continue that trajectory, as SJSU needs to be synonymous with Silicon Valley and the City of San José.

None of this will be easy, of course. I know we have a lot of challenges that we’re facing as a campus community, starting with a global pandemic that remains vexing and impacts how we approach our core mission of delivering exceptional educational experiences for our students. Still, I’m confident we’ll continue to be nimble, creative and single-minded on the work at hand.

I hope to meet as many of you in the coming days and weeks ahead as possible, and the upcoming interview/Q&A sessions we’ve scheduled (one each for staff, faculty and students) should be a great start! I can’t wait to see many of you at those virtual events and learn what’s on your minds.

In the meantime—and in the future—I invite you to follow me on Twitter, where I’ll frequently engage with the SJSU community. I’ll also continue posting at my blog site, too, with regular messages and observations about developments around campus and higher education in general.

It’s great to be a Spartan! See you soon.


Steve Perez
Interim President