February 4, 2019

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Aaron Belkin

New center aims to strengthen impact of University research 

Academic studies can be bewildering to the general public — which can mean important findings go unnoticed. SF State’s new Michael D. Palm Center for Research Translation and Public Policy is doing something about that. Launched last year, the research service organization is dedicated to training faculty and students in the art of translating their research for mass consumption — and the greater good.

“The idea is that faculty and students throughout campus are doing research that has very important implications for public policy,” Professor of Political Science and the center’s director Aaron Belkin said. “But we’re not trained as academics to learn how to get our work out into the national policy conversation.”

Belkin leads the charge in the center’s pursuit of social justice through evidence-based research trainings. He will begin the work through a new senior seminar he is teaching this spring — “PLSI 606: The Politics of Social Justice.” Belkin looks to amplify what the new Palm Center does through the course, providing experiences in research translation and designing social justice action campaigns.

As director of the original Palm Center, a 20-year-old nonprofit focused solely on military research, Belkin crafted campaigns that spurred public dialogue and changed public policy. In 2011, for instance, the center helped repeal the U.S. military’s “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, which prohibited openly gay people from serving in the armed forces.

Though both are named after beloved educator and philanthropist Michael D. Palm, the two centers are separate entities. Belkin hopes the new Palm Center can achieve the same kind of influence as the original.

“Democracy depends on scholars not only talking to each other but talking to the public and learning from the public,” he said.


Docusign Logo

Electronic signatures now available through DocuSign

Administration & Finance is excited to announce the official launch of electronic signatures for campus. DocuSign is the approved campuswide electronic signature tool and is now available to all current faculty and staff for University business purposes. Faculty and staff will be able to electronically send, track and approve documents using their DocuSign accounts. By using electronic signatures, we can do our part to make our campus more sustainable and efficient. This change will free up time for us all to do more meaningful work that fulfills SF State’s needs and benefits our students.

To start using electronic signatures, please go to the DocuSign @ San Francisco State website and follow the instructions on the flyer titled “Create your DocuSign account now!” You can also sign up for a DocuSign trainings by going to the website. The website includes electronic signature usage standards, helpful how-to guides and FAQs. For more information, please email the Quality Assurance Team at qateam@sfsu.edu.


Snubbed cigarette

Kick the habit…or help someone who should

Do you have a friend or loved one who’s struggled with quitting tobacco, nicotine or cannabis products? Join the 30 People 30 Day Campaign, a group of volunteer faculty, staff and administrators that advocates for cleaner air on campus over a 30-day period (Feb. 18 through March 20). Campaign workers will be holding weekly trainings on how to refer people using tobacco, nicotine or cannabis products on campus or on sidewalks to resources for support. Those who participated last year reported that many members of the SF State community who use tobacco, nicotine or cannabis products have tried quitting but didn’t know about the resources for support available through the University.

Help spread the word! Join the campaign by registering online here.


The first meeting of the CSU Board of Trustees’ Committee for the Selection of the President will be held in an open forum from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 5, in the McKenna Theater in the Creative Arts building. The open forum will be live-streamed (and web-archived) on the Presidential Search webpage, where individuals may also provide their input on the search for SF State’s next president.

The University welcomes persons with disabilities to tomorrow’s meeting and will provide reasonable accommodations upon request. If you would like reasonable accommodations for this event, contact the Office of the President at ext. 8-1381 or president@sfsu.edu so your request can be reviewed.


New interim AVP for Human Resources

Kenneth M. Tagawa has joined SF State as interim associate vice president for Human Resources for a six-month appointment. A search will be initiated engaging the shared governance process for the permanent hire. During his tenure, Tagawa will oversee a number of Human Resources units, including Payroll, Benefits & Retirement, Labor & Employee Relations, and Talent Management and Compensation Solutions/Operations.

Tagawa received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Colorado Boulder and went on to a long career in higher education. He was chief human resources officer for both the University of Colorado Denver and the University of Washington Tacoma. He also served as chief learning officer of the College and University Professional Association, collaborating with association members and nonprofit and government partners across the country. He went on to serve as vice president of the Association of American Universities in New York City. In addition, he’s also worked with CSU San Bernardino, UC San Francisco and other universities.

Tagawa’s first day at SF State was Thursday, Jan. 31. He can be reached at ext. 5-2650.


Distinguished Faculty Awards and Staff Award nominations

The Academic Senate annually acknowledges outstanding faculty members for extraordinary, meaningful and lasting contributions in the areas of teaching, professional achievement and service. This year also ushers in a new award that will acknowledge outstanding staff for their excellence in service. Please consider nominating your colleagues!

Completed nominations are due by April 2 and should be submitted online. Full guidelines are available for the Distinguished Faculty Awards at senate.sfsu.edu/content/distinguished-faculty-awards. Guidelines for the Distinguished Staff Award are available at senate.sfsu.edu/content/distinguished-staff. Questions may be directed to Faculty and Staff Awards Committee Chair Jennifer Arin at jarin@sfsu.edu or ext. 5-7311.


January Safety Champion of the Month: Aleksey Sobinin

Facilities Services Administrative Specialist/Specialist Aleksey Sobinin is this month’s Make Safety Happen — Safety Champion. Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) recently began presenting the monthly award as part of its mission to promote environmental stewardship and protect the health and safety of SF State faculty, staff and students. Sobinin was recognized for helping EHS get through an underground storage tank inspection with no findings. His prize: a pair of movie tickets presented with EHS’ thanks. Congratulations!


Reminder: approval needed for banners or free-standing signs

Per the University Executive Directive #89-13: Time, Place and Manner: Use of Buildings and Grounds, in order to display a free-standing sign or banner the posting entity or individual must receive prior approval of the location and method of installation. A form for requesting the posting of signs and banners is available on the Enterprise Risk Management website

Banners and free-standing signs may only be displayed for three weeks unless granted an exception by the president or the president’s designees, such as for official University business of an ongoing nature. Banners and free-standing signs that note specific event dates must be removed within 48 hours after the noted date. Unapproved banners and free-standing signs may be removed at any time by designated University personnel.


VITA offers free tax preparation on campus

If your 2018 household income is less than $54,000, you can get free tax help through the SF State chapter of the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. Starting tomorrow, IRS-certified tax preparers in the VITA office in SCI 205 can help you get the refund you deserve. Information on office hours, the type of returns prepared and what to bring to get help from VITA can be found online. Questions? Call the VITA office at ext. 8-1079 or send an email to vitacoord.sfsubap@gmail.com.

SF State’s VITA program is sponsored by the IRS and the University’s Beta Alpha Psi - Beta Chi Chapter, an international honor society for business majors.


2019 ICCE Call to Service Initiative grant recipients

The Institute for Civic and Community Engagement (ICCE) with great pleasure announces the awardees of the 2019 Call to Service Initiative grants. This year ICCE received 38 proposals across all categories, and all proposals went through a blind review process. Below are the awardees, listed by category.

Add Service Learning to a Course Grant

  • Sarah Crabtree, Associate Professor, History, “HIST 405: Maritime History”
  • Oscar Guerra, Assistant Professor, Broadcast and Electronic Communication Arts, “BECA 360 Virtual Reality: 360 Video Production with Community Service”
  • Jae Paik, Professor, Psychology, “PSY 558: Field Service Seminar”/“PSY 559: Psychological Field Service”
  • Aritree Samanta, Assistant Professor, School of Public Affairs and Civic Engagement, “ENVS 224: Research Methods for Environmental Studies”

Partnerships in Service Learning

  • Anoshua Chaudhuri, Professor, Economics, Community Partner: City Surf Project
  • Jesus Ramirez-Valles, Director, Health Equity Institute, Community Partner: Turnout

Civic Engagement / Civic Learning

  • Katie M. Hetherington, Assistant Professor, Accounting, Program: Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)
  • Karen Boyce, Director, Health Promotion & Wellness (HPW), Program: HPW Ambassadors

Department/Program/School Level Service Learning Grant

  • Jason Gurdak, Associate Professor, Earth & Climate Sciences

Eisman Award for Engaged Scholarship

  • Jae Paik, Professor, Psychology, “PSY 558: Field Service Seminar”/“PSY 559: Psychological Field Service”

Conference Travel

  • Jerome Schwab, Lecturer, English Language & Literature
  • Jolie Goorjian, Lecturer, English Language & Literature
  • Amy Love, Lecturer, English Language & Literature

To learn more about the available grants and awardees, visit the ICCE Call to Service grant webpage. Congratulations to all recipients!


Call for proposals: Research and Scholarly Activity Fund grants

The SF State Research and Scholarly Activity Fund aims to support the creation of new or ongoing research projects and scholarly activities (including creative works and community-engaged activities) that encourage application to externally funded opportunities or bring external recognition to the principal investigator and the University. Two separate grant opportunities are available.

  • Faculty who are creating new projects, new scholarship activities or new creativity directions are encouraged to apply for Development of Research and Creativity (DRC) Grants, funded by the CSU Chancellor’s Office.
  • Faculty who are engaged in continuing work (e.g., preparing a scholarly manuscript for publication, completing creative work, conducting data analysis) or other scholarly work (e.g., pilot data) leading to external funding proposals are encouraged to apply for an Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP) Small Grant.

Individual projects involving one faculty member may request up to $10,000. Collaborative projects involving two or more faculty members may request up to $15,000. You may only apply to one of the opportunities, not both. Early- to mid-career faculty are especially encouraged to submit applications. Faculty on sabbatical leave during the application or award period may apply. Faculty participating in the early retirement program (FERP) are not eligible for this grant program. The submission deadline is Wednesday, March 1, at 5 p.m., no exceptions.

More information about eligibility and the application process can be found on the ORSP website.


Deadline approaching for PACE mini-grants

Public Affairs & Civic Engagement’s (PACE) Center for Applied Housing Research (CAHR) is offering two mini-grants ($5,000 each) for the 2018-2019 academic year. These mini-grants will support faculty-student teams working on applied research that generates new knowledge to address affordable housing issues at the state, regional or local level. Faculty who receive these grant awards will be required to submit a working paper (seven to 10 pages) summarizing their project and the key findings and implications for the field. Tenured and tenure-track faculty as well as lecturers are eligible to apply. Faculty on sabbatical leave during the application or award period may apply. Faculty participating in the early retirement program (FERP) are not eligible for this grant program.

For award consideration, please submit a one-page letter of interest describing your research project as soon as possible, including: (1) the significance to the affordable housing field; (2) specific goals and methods; and (3) a timeline and chances of successful completion. Also attach your CV and email your application to Ayse Pamuk and Jeremy Hill no later than Tuesday, Feb. 12. Letters of interest will be reviewed on a rolling basis until promising projects are identified. Papers must be completed by Sept. 16, 2019.

More information about CAHR and the working papers completed during the first round of the grant cycle can be viewed at appliedhousingresearch.org.


Academic Senate meeting, Feb. 5

The Academic Senate will meet Tuesday from 2 to 5 p.m. in the Nob Hill Room of the Seven Hills Conference Center. An open-floor period from 2 to 2:10 p.m. will provide an informal opportunity to raise questions or make comments to Senate officers or University administrators. Please arrive promptly at 2 p.m. The agenda will include:

  • Recommendation from the Curriculum Review and Approval Committee — Proposed Revision of the B.A. in English: Concentrations in English Education, Linguistics and Literature and Professional Writing & Rhetoric, second reading
  • Recommendation from the Curriculum Review and Approval Committee — Proposed Revision of the M.A. in English: Concentrations in Composition, Linguistics and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, second reading
  • Recommendation from the Curriculum Review and Approval Committee — Proposed Revision of the M.A. in English Literatures, second reading
  • Recommendation from the Executive Committee — Proposed Resolution on the Selection of Presidents in the California State University System, first reading
  • Recommendation from the Curriculum Review and Approval Committee — Proposed Revision of the Minor in Art History, first reading
  • Recommendation from the Curriculum Review and Approval Committee — Proposed Revision of the Minor in Studio History, first reading
  • Recommendation from the Executive Committee — Proposed Revision of #S18-180, Search Committees for San Francisco State University Administrators Policy, first reading
  • Recommendation from the Executive Committee — Proposed Amendments to the Constitution of the Academic Senate of San Francisco State University, first reading

The complete agenda and support documents for the meeting are available online.


“Journalism in a Populist Age: Lessons from Israel and the U.S.,” Feb. 5

Anat Balint, Department of Jewish Studies visiting lecturer in Israel studies, and Department of Journalism Professor Venise Wager will speak on the topic “Journalism in a Populist Age: Lessons from Israel and the U.S.” tomorrow. The talk will be held from 4 to 5:30 p.m. in HUM 418. A reception of kosher sushi will follow the event. Everyone is welcome.


Coffee with a Cop, Feb. 7

Members of the SF State community can join officers from the University Police Department (UPD) for free coffee and open conversation this coming Thursday. The Coffee with a Cop event, to be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the plaza level of the Cesar Chavez Student Center, will be your chance to ask questions, voice concerns or just get to know the officers who keep SF State safe. 


“Past as Prologue: Integrating Archaeology and Conservation in the Age of Anthropocene,” Feb. 11

Todd J. Braje, the Irvine Chair of Anthropology at the California Academy of Sciences, will visit campus to discuss how the geological age has given way to “Anthropocene,” defined as the period during which human activity has been the dominant influence on climate and the environment. His free talk, “Past as Prologue: Integrating Archaeology and Conservation in the Age of Anthropocene,” will be held Monday, Feb. 11, from noon to 1 p.m. in FA 525. Questions? Send a message to anthro@sfsu.edu.


“The Development of Romantic Love in the Georgian Era,” Feb. 12

Emerita Professor of Elementary Education DiAnn Ellis will be on campus Tuesday, Feb. 12, to deliver the illustrated lecture “The Development of Romantic Love in the Georgian Era.” An SF State professor for 34 years and an active member of the Jane Austen Society of North America, Ellis will focus in particular on Austen’s novels “Pride and Prejudice,” “Emma” and “Persuasion.” Light refreshments will be served. The lecture will begin at 2 p.m. in LIB 286.


UndocuAlly Training, Feb. 18

SF State staff and faculty interested in supporting the undocumented student population are invited to register for an UndocuAlly training this semester. Participants will receive an overview of immigration history, recent legislation and common challenges for undocumented students; hear the stories of current SF State students; and receive information about resources available for current and prospective students. Any staff or faculty member is welcome to participate. Space is limited so please sign up here: bit.ly/undocuallyspring2019.


Student Centered Design in iLearn, Feb. 19 & 20

CEETL’s Equitable Teaching Series explores foundational teaching approaches that foster equity and inclusivity in support of student success. The next workshop of the series, “Student Centered Design in iLearn,” will be offered on Tuesday, Feb. 19, and Wednesday, Feb. 20, from noon to 1:30 p.m. in LIB 242. Participants will:

  • Explore three lenses of student-centered design (belonging, empathy and authenticity) and iLearn’s relevant tools and features, illustrated by examples from SF State courses with these lenses in action
  • Reflect on your in-class student-centered practices and how these might be carried over to iLearn

In order to accommodate as many faculty as possible, the same workshop is offered both dates and can be arranged on additional dates by departmental request.

Bring your own lunch; CEETL will provide dessert and beverages! Click here to register for the February 19 workshop. Click here to register for the February 20 workshop.

Questions? Contact the CEETL team at ceetl@sfsu.edu.

Campaign off to a BOLD start

An Inside Philanthropy article took an up-close look at SF State’s “BOLD Thinking” fundraising campaign as part of an examination of liberal arts philanthropy in higher education. “As of early November, SF State had raised roughly $53 million from alumni. At the time of this writing, the campaign’s tally stands at $134 million, suggesting the school should blow past its goal [$150 million] before it winds down in 2020,” the article said. “This success is attributable to the fact that SF State has built a formidable footprint in the cash-flush Bay Area. According to the school, its impact on the regional economy surpasses $1 billion, in part because it is Silicon Valley’s third largest employee source.” “We’re an intricate and integral part of the Bay Area,” President Les Wong was quoted as saying, “not only in the business sector but in social and nonprofit areas as well.” You can read the rest of the article online.


McDaniel on “the heart of the Democratic Party”

Associate Professor of Political Science Jason McDaniel was quoted in a Globe and Mail article analyzing Senator Kamala Harris’ 2020 presidential run. According to McDaniel, Harris — whose father was from Jamaica and mother from India — could draw African American voters who supported Barack Obama but didn’t turn out in the same numbers for Hillary Clinton. “If you want to know what the heart of the Democratic Party is, it’s black women,” McDaniel said. “Although her ethnic background is biracial, she’s seen as a black woman and she’s well-positioned, people believe, to get some of that support.”


Article paints a portrait of art lecturer

Lecturer of Art Kathy Zarur was the subject of a San Francisco Examiner profile focusing on her work as an art curator and instructor. The article explores Zarur’s family history and world travels as well as her devotion to teaching. “I’m dedicated to serving young people. I teach because it’s important students learn to think critically,” she said. “I think that’s the most important thing I teach in my classroom.”


Tate talks transgender kids

Associate Professor of Psychology Charlotte Tate discussed her research on how transgender children experience and talk about their gender in a recent article in The Atlantic. “One of the most consistent themes is that at some early point, sometimes as early as age 3 to 5, there’s this feeling that the individual is part of another gender group,” Tate said. When identified as their assigned gender, “They’ll say, ‘No, that’s not right. That doesn’t fit me.’ They have self-knowledge that’s private and that they’re trying to communicate.”


Rosser hosts women-in-science roundtable

Sue Rosser, SF State’s senior advisor to the President for special projects and former University provost, will host a roundtable this Friday at Stanford University.. The event — titled “National Interventions to Create Gender Equity in Academic STEM Cultures” — is timed to coincide with the release of a special issue of the medical journal The Lancet devoted to women in science and medicine. The discussion will be held from 2:15 to 3:45 p.m. at Stanford’s Clark Center Auditorium. Interested in attending? Register here.