October 20, 1999
At the beginning of 1999, former President Blenda Wilson appointed a Web Site Redesign Advisory Committee that was charged with evaluating and making recommendations for the redesign of the university web site. The committee is chaired by Mr. Bill Outhouse, Vice President for University Relations, and consists of representatives from the four major divisions of the University and Information Technology Resources. In order to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the site, the committee consulted widely with members of the university community, including students, and reviewed the web sites of other universities.
I am pleased to report that the committee has completed the important first phase of its work and developed a contentredesign of the web site. The committee is now requesting campus comment on the organization of content and information on the web site. (Please note that the graphic redesign will shortly follow.) The redesign features ease of navigation through general topics and target audience links, the addition of a page index ("CSUN A-Z"), and a focus on topics of interest rather than on the administrative organization of the university.
To facilitate review of the redesign, a link has been created on the front page of the university's present web site at http://www.csun.edu that will connect you directly to the redesigned site. The "Guest Feedback" link at the site may be used to submit comments about the proposed redesign. There is also a link to an online form to request an addition to the web site. Comments may be also sent by campus mail to Vice President Outhouse in University Relations at mail drop 8275. In order to ensure that all comments are considered before the new web pages become official, comments must be received by Friday, Oct. 29. Comments or suggestions received after this date may not be incorporated into the site until after the new site is launched.
We particularly ask that departments, centers and other units ensure that they are included in the appropriate sections of the web site and that their links are working and correct. General comments about the organization of the site are also welcome.
A Web Page Editorial Board will be appointed to manage the web site. The responsibilities of the board, to be chaired by the Vice President of University Relations, are to keep the site current and to provide guidance for the campus webmaster, particularly in making decisions about the content on the web site's front pages. The editorial board will also work to promote a clarity of message in all university web pages. The existing standards and policies for campus web pages were deemed adequate and the editorial board hopes that the redesign of the web site will encourage the webmasters of departmental pages to conform to existing policies and standards.
It is important to note that a web page is a dynamic, living document - the site will be continually updated and we will continue to make enhancements. The site you are being asked to review will continue to be upgraded, even after it is online. Proposed features to be added include an improved search engine, a comprehensive online university calendar, changing images, and an updated virtual tour of the campus. Cal State Northridge has always been a leader in its use of technology and developing an enhanced presence on the World Wide Web is important to this goal. The Web Site Redesign Advisory Committee looks forward to your comments.
Faculty/Staff Appreciation Day
The Department of Intercollegiate Athletics has designated Saturday, Oct. 30, as Faculty/Staff Appreciation Day at our home football game against Weber State University.
All faculty and staff members and a guest are invited to attend and will be admitted free to the game. Simply present your CSUN identification at a designated check-in table at the stadium on game day and you will be provided two complimentary general admission tickets. Kick-off is 3:05 p.m.
Please join us in an enjoyable afternoon of college football at North Campus Stadium, located on Devonshire and Lindley.
Tidal Wave II
While many crucial challenges are anticipated for higher education in California in the near future, one that has already required the attention of the California State University system is "Tidal Wave II" - the anticipation of up to 117,000 additional students who will seek enrollment in the CSU by 2010. This figure represents an increase by 42 percent over current enrollment.
Knowing that many of you may have already heard about Tidal Wave II, I thought I would take this opportunity to tell you about some of the activities and plans that are currently underway to prepare the CSU for this next wave of students. The first Tidal Wave students were those who formed the post-war Baby Boom generation and began pursuing college educations in the late 1950s and early 1960s. California's original Master Plan for Higher Education was created to accommodate these students and helped coordinate the work of the state's community college, University of California and California State University systems.
Long-range, statewide planning is clearly needed to meet the demands of Tidal Wave II, which will require a dramatic increase in the enrollment capacity at California universities. While new facilities are being developed, such as CSU Channel Islands and a new UC campus in Fresno, these universities will not meet the increased enrollment demand.
As this suggests, higher education institutions in California need to make the most efficient and creative use of existing facilities and resources. As the California Citizens Commission on Higher Education stated in its final report, there needs to be
A commitment by state government and the institutions of higher education to use capacity within the independent institutions of higher education as a way of accommodating at least a portion of Tidal Wave II,
and the institutions must
deliver more education without increased capital costs by making extraordinary efforts to use existing facilities more intensively and extensively.
The CSU system and Cal State Northridge are seeking innovative solutions to this new challenge. Some ideas that are being considered include:
- Year-round operations at existing campuses and greater provision of evening, weekend and distance learning classes. It is not clear whether these options will be embraced by faculty and students because it represents a significant departure from the traditional nine-month school year. However, the CSU system is exploring ways to provide classes for students during non traditional times.
As part of this process, the Chancellor's Office earmarked a $2.2 million planning allocation to initiate year-round operations. I am pleased to report that Cal State Northridge was one of 10 campuses that received a portion of this allocation. Provost Philip Handler and Dean Joyce Feucht-Haviar of the College of Extended Learning coordinated our campus's successful proposal for $205,000 to pilot a small state-supported program for teacher education in summer 2000.
- Optimal use of Technology. At Cal State Northridge, we are increasingly offering courses for both credit and non-credit, and even a master's program over the internet and two-way interactive video. And for many of our professors, the internet has become an important part of teaching and scholarship. Technology will continue to play an important role in enabling universities to increase their capacities.
The challenges of Title Wave II will become more serious in the new century, and they will require all of us - university administrators, faculty, staff, students, the community, and legislators and policymakers - to work together to find creative ways to address them.
CSU Newsline, the news information resource for the CSU system, is now live on the Internet.
For the latest information about the California State University and its campuses, be sure to bookmark CSU Newsline at http://newsline.calstate.edu/. Updated daily by the Chancellor's Office Public Affairs department, you will find the latest CSU-related news at the site. Cal State Northridge is a regular contributor to the site.
- Dr. Judith Marlane, Chair and Professor in the Department of Radio-Television-Film, has just had her book, Women in Television News Revisited, published by the University of Texas Press. A follow-up to her landmark 1976 work, Women in Television News, and an outgrowth of her own experience as a television news professional, Dr. Marlane chronicles the careers of the women studied in her 1976 book, and others in the news business over the past 25 years.
My congratulations to Dr. Marlane for the publication of her book and her work to show how much has changed - and stayed the same - in the industry.
- Four undergraduate students from the Department of History, accompanied by Dr. Steve Bourque, presented papers at the Northern Great Plains History Conference in St. Cloud, Minnesota, earlier this month and were well received. Mr. Kenny Johnson spoke on "Aspects of 19th Century Military History"; Ms. Megan McLeod on "Information Overload: The Case of General George B. McClellan at Antietam"; Mr. Shane Peterson on "The Military Chaplain and His Role in Race Relations"; and Mr. Robert Schwartz on "The V2 Rocket: The Mismanagement of a War."
The successful presentations at the conference by these students underscore the high quality scholarship being done by undergraduates at Cal State Northridge under the mentorship and instruction of faculty. My congratulations to the students, Dr. Bourque and the department for their accomplishments.
Other "From the President's Desks"