President's Office

From the President's Desk November 17 2000

November 17, 2000

Academy High School

Previous From the President's Deskshave discussed a joint project between the Los Angeles Unified School District and Cal State Northridge to establish an "academy high school" at the university. The high school, which the LAUSD proposes to build on our Zelzah Court property north of Halsted Street, would provide an opportunity for CSUN to work with the LAUSD to jointly ease some of the shortage of classroom seats in this area and develop a program targeted toward Valley students who are interested in pursuing teaching careers.

Seeking to gain community input, the LAUSD has formed a Site Advisory Committee to guide the district on the design of the future school. The committee's charge will include providing comments to the selected architect about the project design. Mr. Tom Tindall, assistant vice president for facilities management, will serve as a co-chair of the committee, and Dr. Don Brownlee of the Communication Studies Department will serve as the university's representative. The Site Advisory Committee will hold its first meeting on Monday, Nov. 20, at 7 p.m. in the Monroe High School Auditorium at 9229 Haskell Ave. in North Hills. Anyone interested in more information about the project should contact Academic Affairs at ext. 2957.

Creating a More User-Friendly Campus

During my inaugural president's address in August, I defined four priorities that will be the major focus of our efforts this year to improve the campus. As you may recall, these priorities are: strengthening internal and external community connections, improving graduation rates, increasing fund raising, and creating a more user-friendly campus. This and future issues of From the President's Deskwill help inform the campus of our progress on these priorities.

Let me start with an update on our efforts to create a more user-friendly campus. Clearly, we all should be committed to improving the ways we do our work and be focused on making our work a satisfying experience. In the coming months, we will be looking at different facets of the university where we may be able to make progress such as campus business practices, campus services, student concerns, academic programs, campus environment and faculty and staff concerns.

For this process to produce the best outcomes, we will need to gather input from as many people on campus as possible to identify priority issues. In doing so, we will discern why those issues are important and determine appropriate, realistic improvements. Through a survey form we are developing, campus community members will have the opportunity to express their top three concerns in each of the categories listed above and offer suggested improvements. The survey form will be posted on the university's web site and be distributed to a wide variety of campus constituency groups. More details about this process, including the Internet site of the survey, will be announced in an upcoming From the President's Desk. We will look forward to receiving your valuable suggestions as we begin this process.

New Administration Building Named "University Hall"

As you know, the university has begun to select names for new facilities that reflect the unique characteristics of CSUN, based on recommendations from the university's Facilities Naming Committee. The first facility we have formally named is Sequoia Hall, the building under construction for the College of Health and Human Development and the Technology Center.

With the approval of the President's Cabinet, we have now accepted the naming committee's recommendation to designate the new administration building as "University Hall." Other new building names will be announced as they are approved.

Vice President for Student Affairs Candidates' Forums

In the last From the President's Desk,I also announced the names of four candidates for the position of Vice President for Student Affairs and the dates of their campus visits.

I am pleased to now add that open forums for members of the campus community to meet the candidates are scheduled as follows:

  • Nov. 27 Dr. Elizabeth Stoddard 2 - 2:50 p.m., South Valley Room, USU
  • Nov. 28 Dr. Cornel Morton 2 - 2:50 p.m., South Valley Room, USU
  • Nov. 30 Dr. Terry Piper 2 - 2:50 p.m., Room 1214, Education Bldg.
  • Dec. 8 Dr. Karen Mendonca 2 - 2:50 p.m., Granada Room, USU

The candidates' full resumés are available for review in the President's Office. Abbreviated resumés also can be found online at

Campus Achievements

Dr. Charles Hanson of the Educational Psychology and Counseling Department has received funding from the state to support the "Valley Trauma Center Northeast San Fernando Valley Project." The award will enable the center to establish free sexual assault crisis follow-up services for low-income and Spanish-speaking residents of all ages in the Northeast San Fernando Valley.

The Valley Trauma Center underscores the importance of CSUN's work in the community and is an example of how the university can strengthen its external connections, one of the priorities outlined in my first annual president's address. My congratulations to Dr. Hanson and the staff at the Valley Trauma Center for their efforts to provide this important service.

Our Public Relations team in the University Advancement Division has received several district awards from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) in several categories. An Award of Excellence has been given to Mr. Randal Thomson, director of publications, and Mr. John Chandler, director of public affairs, for @CSUN in the category of internal audience periodicals (tabloids). An Award of Distinction for excellence in news writing has been given to Mr. Chandler. Also, Ms. Mayerene Barker, editor of Northridge magazine, and the Public Relations staff have received an Award of Distinction for Northridgemagazine in the magazines category.

Congratulations to Interim Vice President for University Advancement Dick Tyler and the entire Public Relations staff for this recognition. The CASE awards, selected by other university public relations professionals, recognize creativity, quality and effectiveness in advancing the university's goals internally and externally through campus publications. The awards will be presented during CASE's upcoming conference in San Diego on November 30.


Jolene Koester