September 23, 2019"Please press the enter key fr the icon you would like to hear more about. Currently, the associated text is not being read automatically. Please use insert key and arrow down to get to the text."
'Cheng Yu

SF State grad student wins top CSU honor

Growing up deaf and gay in China, a country in which both of those groups are marginalized, SF State graduate student Cheng Yu had periods where he couldn’t see any hope. Now he’s on the road to a Ph.D. and is being recognized as the 2019 Trustee Emeritus Ali C. Razi Scholar by the California State University, the highest honor of the 23 Trustees’ Awards given each year by the CSU.

“It doesn’t matter how many challenges and how many hardships you face,” Yu said. “You can’t give up. When you don’t give up, you still get a chance to do something more.”

In his childhood, Yu was discriminated against for his deafness and later was forced into abusive conversion therapy when he told others about his sexual identity. Upon leaving the clinic, he dedicated himself to leaving China as well, studying English and applying to universities in the U.S. He went on to earn a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Oregon, the first in his family to go to college. His choice of major was informed by his own experiences with discrimination and a desire to try to understand why humans make the decisions they do.

At SF State, Yu is a researcher in the lab of Associate Professor of Psychology Charlotte Tate. He studies a field called “social vision,” which deals with how we perceive others based on nonverbal cues. He plans to become a psychology professor and also hopes to start an international nonprofit that will provide support for gay men in China. He will be honored with the other award recipients at a meeting of the CSU Board of Trustees Sept. 24.

Woman in wheelchair

Superfest Disability Film Festival returns

The 33rd annual Superfest Disability Film Festival features a range of films that showcase a diversity of disability experiences, from a botanist and polio survivor in Burkina Faso who has planted over a million trees to a teen in New York City who is about to be one of the first deaf poets to compete in a speaking poetry slam. Co-produced by the Longmore Institute on Disability at SF State and the LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Superfest has always celebrated cutting-edge cinema that portrays disability through a diverse, complex, unabashed and engaging lens. Don’t miss the world’s longest-running disability film festival, where people with disabilities call the shots. To learn more or purchase tickets, go to

Ingrid C. Williams

Ingrid C. Williams named AVP for Human Resources

Ingrid C. Williams has been appointed associate vice president for Human Resources. She will report to Interim Vice President of Administration and Finance and CFO Jeff Wilson. Currently the senior associate vice president for Human Resources at Cal Maritime, Williams will assume her duties effective Monday, Nov. 4. Williams’ appointment follows a national search.

Williams joined Cal Maritime in 2012 after serving in various leadership roles during her previous employment at Santa Clara University and the University of San Francisco. In her role at Cal Maritime, Williams is responsible for the management and oversight of core human resources functions, including employee and labor relations; employment services; compensation and benefits administration; payroll services; professional development; whistleblower, Equal Employment Opportunity and regulatory compliance; the Human Resources Information System; and safety and risk. Williams also serves as Cal Maritime’s DHR administrator and chief diversity officer, working with campus constituencies to promote diversity and inclusion. She also served as Cal Maritime’s Title IX officer and continues to serve as a deputy Title IX coordinator for the campus.

“I want to express my sincere gratitude to the search committee, co-chaired by Tiffany Mikami and Susan Pelton. The committee did an outstanding job of identifying excellent candidates to fill this critical position,” Wilson said. “Their dedication and hard work has resulted in the appointment of Ingrid Williams, who will bring the experience and skills necessary to lead and develop Human Resources’ efforts to deliver outstanding service, professionalism and advice to the University’s employees and leadership.”

College of Ethnic Studies anniversary commemoration details

The College of Ethnic Studies is hosting a series of events, including interactive presentations, panel discussions and readings, for its 50th Anniversary Commemoration Week Oct. 7-12. Faculty are particularly encouraged to sign up to bring their classes to the more student-centered sessions on Monday, Oct. 7, and Thursday, Oct. 10, in Jack Adams Hall, by contacting the college at

Presentations by CSU ethnic studies faculty will take place on Friday, Oct. 11, and Saturday, Oct. 12. The commemoration week will conclude with a gala dinner the evening of Saturday, Oct. 12. Seats and sponsorship opportunities for the gala are still available: Join the College of Ethnic Studies’ extended family of 1968 strikers, alumni, supporters and friends spanning 50 years to share fine food and drink, listen to live music and celebrate this momentous date together. Find more information on the College of Ethnic Studies website.

Time to review your benefit plan

Open Enrollment 2020 is now open and will run until Oct. 4. Open Enrollment is an opportunity for you to review your current benefit plan elections to ensure that they continue to meet your needs and those of your family. You can change your benefits, update your beneficiaries and check your mailing address. Additions, changes or deletions will become effective Jan. 1, 2020. The deadline for submissions is 5 p.m. Friday, Oct. 4. Late submission will not be accepted.

Please remember to update your benefits, if needed, and submit documentation prior to the closing date. Learn more on the Human Resources website.

First-Year Experience Initiative seeks faculty for peer mentoring program

The First-Year Experience Initiative will launch its inaugural first-year seminar peer mentoring program this spring. Faculty teaching a First-Year Seminar/Area E course during the Spring 2020 semester can request a peer mentor for their course. A meeting with peer mentors and Spring 2020 Area E faculty is scheduled for Friday, Nov. 1, from 10 a.m. to noon. Interested? Apply and RSVP online by Oct. 15. For more information, email Grace Yoo at

La Bienvenida campaign

SF State’s Division of Equity and Community Inclusion, in collaboration with the First-Year Experience Initiative, has developed an outreach and orientation media campaign that welcomes Spanish-speaking first-year students and their families to the SF State community. Funded through the CSU Chancellor’s Office’s 2019 Student Cohort Transition Programs, the campaign is titled “La Bienvenida Project,” which translates to “The Welcome.” The goal is to offer Spanish-language resources and information for first-time students and their families while providing an online resource and enhancement for campus workshops and presentations. Learn more on the Division of Equity and Community Inclusion website.

Academic Senate report

The SF State Academic Senate met Tuesday, Sept. 17, in the Seven Hills Conference Center. At the meeting:

  • The Senate approved a revision of the Strategic Issues Committee in the bylaws of the Academic Senate  — Change in the Charge of the Strategic Issues Committee.
  • The Senate heard in first reading proposed revisions to the Master of Science in Biology: Concentrations in Cell & Molecular Biology, Integrative Biology and Physiology & Behavioral Biology.
  • The Curriculum Review and Approval Committee presented revisions to the definitions of substantive and non-substantive curriculum proposals as an information item.
  • The College of Health & Social Sciences presented information regarding the movement of the Criminal Justice Studies Program out of the School of Public Affairs & Civic Engagement.

The full agenda, meeting materials and minutes can be found on the Senate website.

QLT Online Teaching Lab Special Topics Series

Join Academic Technology’s Teaching and Learning team in the QLT Online Teaching Lab for a series of one-hour online workshops about online teaching. The workshops will be held the first Friday of the month through the Fall Semester. Each online workshop is composed of a 30-minute presentation on Zoom (live and scheduled) and 30 minutes of individual reflection in iLearn (self-paced). The workshops are:

Active Learning Online Using Zoom Sessions: Friday, Oct. 4, 10 to 10:30 a.m.
Learn strategies for engaging students using Zoom and active learning techniques.

Designing for Academic Integrity: Friday, Nov. 1, 10 to 10:30 a.m.
Learn strategies for designing online assessments that offer students opportunities for low-stakes practice and increase student self-efficacy.

Digital Literacies: Friday, Dec. 6, 10 to 10:30 a.m.
Learn strategies for harnessing students’ digital literacies (as expert consumers of culture) to help them understand how this skill set can make them better writers and readers.

Sign up for the QLT Online Teaching Lab online. From there you can pick and choose which topics you'd like to engage with.

Conflict management workshop, Sept. 25

The Office of Professional and Organizational Development invites leadership staff to a training session dedicated to conflict management and resolution approaches that help maintain healthy relationships. The workshop will be held in LIB 222 from 1:30 to 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 25. RSVP via Qualtrics.

SF State Benefits Fair, Sept. 25

It’s time again for Human Resources’ annual Benefits Fair. Get health, dental and vision information and meet some of our on-campus partners dedicated to your wellness. This year’s Benefits Fair will be held Wednesday, Sept. 25, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Jack Adams Hall, located on the third floor of the Cesar Chavez Student Center. The Benefits Fair is an informational open house and provides an opportunity for faculty and staff to meet with representatives from the various plans and programs offered at SF State. A wide range of health-care groups, investment groups and wellness companies are expected to attend. Fair attendees will be eligible to win door prizes from participating vendors.

The 7 Habits of Highly Fulfilled People forum, Sept. 26

Human Resources invites you to a screening of an online webcast featuring innovative training for your professional and personal success. Led by Woodbury University Professor of Management Satinder Dhiman, “The CSU’s Got Talent: The 7 Habits of Highly Fulfilled People — Journey from Success to Significance” will facilitate the exchange of ideas, perspectives and information as it relates to professional and personal development. You can watch the webcast Thursday, Sept. 26, from 10 to 11:30 a.m. in LIB 222. Learn more on the HR website.

Mindfulness: A Doorway to Creativity, Oct. 2

The campus community is invited to a guided meditation workshop, Mindfulness: A Doorway to Creativity. Two professional mindfulness coaches, Mary Gilbert and Lynn Hazeltine, will be on hand to walk beginners through the why, how and when of meditation. The workshop will be held Wednesday, Oct. 2, from 4 to 7 p.m. in the faculty commons (LIB 286). Register online.

Equitable Teaching Series: TILT Your Assignment, Oct. 8 & 11

CEETL’s Equitable Teaching Series explores foundational teaching approaches that foster equity and inclusivity in support of student success. Faculty can attend the next workshop in the series — TILT Your Assignment — on Tuesday, Oct. 8, from noon to 1:30 p.m. in LIB 242 or on Friday, Oct. 11, from noon to 1 p.m. via Zoom. In this workshop you will:

  • Describe the importance of the Transparency in Learning and Teaching (TILT) model for student learning and success
  • Apply the principles of TILT to adapt an assignment for your class
  • Create an action plan to develop and deliver a TILTed assignment

Please be sure to bring an assignment to work on.

Register via Qualtrics for the Oct. 8 workshop in LIB 242.

Register via Qualtrics for the Oct. 11 workshop via ZOOM.

Questions? Contact the CEETL team at

"Outlaw Ocean" conversation and book signing, Oct. 16

The Estuary & Ocean Science (EOS) Center LiteraSea book group will host a special book discussion led by the author of “Outlaw Ocean: Journeys Across the Last Untamed Frontier,” Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ian Urbina, on Wednesday, Oct. 16. Urbina’s book is a riveting, adrenaline-fueled tour of a vast, lawless and rampantly criminal world that few have ever seen: the high seas. Both a gripping adventure story and a stunning exposé, it brings into view for the first time the disturbing reality of a floating world that connects us all, a place where anyone can do anything because no one is watching. The event begins at 5:30 p.m. at the Romberg Tiburon Campus’ Bay Conference Center. Learn more on the EOS Center website.

Free talk on collecting family history, Oct. 18

An expert on helping families capture memories from their aging loved ones will give a free talk on campus Friday, Oct. 18. Amelia Lin is the CEO of Keep Life Stories, a service that helps people preserve their family history in an online audio storybook. Lin’s hour-long talk — “What Were You Like as a Kid, Grandma?” — will begin at 12:30 p.m. in the Sutro Library Reading Room on the fifth floor of the J. Paul Leonard Library. Interested? Register via Eventbrite.

Sueyoshi and Monteiro on benefits of ethnic studies

Dean of College of Ethnic Studies Amy Sueyoshi and Professor of Psychology Kenneth Monteiro were interviewed by The Spectator about the benefits of ethnic studies being integrated into public high schools in the U.S. “It asks all students to think about structural inequality and the ways in which people have historically and in the present empowered themselves, to make change, to eradicate inequality and injustice,” said Sueyoshi. “The ethnic studies curriculum actually asks for transformative change. It asks for people to make the world a better place.” Read the full article.

Calkins celebrates 18 years probing Proust

Lecturer of Comparative & World Literature Mark Calkins has led a seminar on French novelist Marcel Proust at the Mechanics’ Institute Library in San Francisco since 2001. This month the seminar continued with an examination of the fifth volume of Proust’s massive seven-part novel “Remembrance of Things past.” Learn more on the Mechanics’ Institute website.

Kern talks VR with the NYT

Professor and Chair of Kinesiology Marialice Kern was quoted in a New York Times article about the use of virtual reality as exercise. “There are certain people who don’t like to exercise, whether that’s hiking or biking. But they love to play video games,” Kern says. “Why not get both?” Read the full article.

McAfee weighs in on state climate strategy

Professor of International Relations Kathleen McAfee co-wrote an opinion article for the San Francisco Chronicle about the California Air Resources Board’s upcoming climate strategy decisions. The article focused on a proposal to allow industrial polluters in the state to offset their greenhouse-gas emissions by paying to protect rainforests like the Amazon. “Who doesn’t want to stop tropical deforestation and help people in the developing world — all while reducing emissions?” wrote McAfee and her co-author, University of Cambridge ecology scholar Libby Blanchard. “The problem is that a large body of research shows the strategy would likely result in continued tropical deforestation, increased greenhouse-gas emissions and potential harm to indigenous and other rural people.”

Peper on postural awareness

Professor of Health Education Erik Peper, Associate Professor of Recreation, Parks & Tourism Richard Harvey and a colleague co-authored an article on the psychological benefits of having good posture. The article, “Transforming Thought with Postural Awareness to Increase Therapeutic and Teaching Efficacy,” was published in the journal NeuroRegulation earlier this month. Read it online.

Parker gives keynote fire talk

Professor of Biology Thomas Parker was the keynote speaker at the event “California on Fire: The Past, Present and Future of Fire Ecology in the Golden State” on Thursday, Sept. 19, sponsored by the Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History. Parker’s talk focused on the role of fire in California’s unique landscapes. Read about the event and about Parker’s perspective on fire ecology on the Good Times Santa Cruz website.