September 30, 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."
'Left to right- John Stanley, Juanita Tamayo Lott, Virginia P. Marshall and Robert Garfias.

Trailblazers, leaders to be inducted into Alumni Hall of Fame

For the past 25 years, SF State has recognized the outstanding achievements of its distinguished alumni during the Alumni Hall of Fame celebration. For 2019, the University has chosen four inductees for their extraordinary contributions to education, arts and culture and the social sciences. President Lynn Mahoney and the University community will celebrate their accomplishments at a Nov. 1 Alumni Hall of Fame induction ceremony and dinner at the Ritz-Carlton San Francisco.

This year’s inductees (left to right):

  • John Stanley (B.A., ’62), critic, author and longtime host of the popular Bay Area TV series “Creature Features”
  • Juanita Tamayo Lott (B.A., ’70), expert on demographic changes, participant in the 1968 SF State campus strike and key player in the founding of the College of Ethnic Studies and the Asian American Studies Department
  • Virginia P. Marshall (M.A., ’88), passionate award-winning educator and 30-year veteran with the San Francisco Unified School District
  • Robert Garfias (A.B., ’56), world-renowned ethnomusicologist and founder of the ethnomusicology program at the University of Washington

Learn more about this year’s Alumni Hall of Fame celebration.

Silhouette of a person sitting – assumably meditating — while looking at a fading sun on the horizon.

SF State researchers compare meditation techniques 

Disruptive thoughts during attempts to meditate are so common they have a name: “monkey mind” (because the brain can’t stay still). Ironically, a new SF State study suggests that the best way for thwarted meditators to quiet their monkey minds is to make a little noise.

The popular meditation technique known as “mindfulness” tries to guide practitioners to a peaceful, serene state by encouraging them to observe their thoughts without judgement or attachment. But the SF State study suggests that people who practice toning — vocalizing long, sustained sounds as a form of meditation — have significantly fewer intrusive thoughts than those practicing mindfulness.

The study was co-authored by SF State faculty and student researchers from the Department of Recreation, Parks, Tourism and Holistic Health along with University alumnus and sound healer Madhu Anziani (B.A., ’10). Professor of Holistic Health Erik Peper, the lead researcher of the study, says most meditation practices tend to focus on an approach that’s primarily thought-based, but for some people, this can make them overwhelmed. Toning is a great meditation alternative because the sound vibrates in the body and blocks distracting thoughts, Peper explained.

“Think about when you’re upset. Telling yourself to stop being upset often doesn’t work because your mind is focused on how upset you are,” Peper said. “But if you focus on something other than your thoughts and emotions, the feelings of being upset often subside.”

The study, published in the journal NeuroRegulation in early September, compared the experiences of toning and mindfulness among 91 undergraduate students. Read it online.

San Francisco State University nursing students take notes during a lecture.

New curriculum gives medical schools a dose of hospitality

“Laughter is the best medicine,” the old saying goes. But according to SF State Assistant Professor of Management Priyanka Joshi, medical practitioners don’t need to be hilarious. They just need to be more hospitable.

A patient-centered service mentality is at the heart of a new hospitality curriculum developed for medical schools by Joshi and three colleagues. The curriculum encourages medical providers to put thought into every aspect of a patient’s experience, from waiting room décor to how appointments are scheduled to the number of available parking spots. The result, Joshi says, won’t just be happier patients. It will be healthier ones.

“Recent research shows a patient’s experience of care is not just determined by the quality of their doctor,” she said. “All these secondary factors influence whether a patient believes their doctor is competent, whether they trust their doctor, whether they will follow their doctor’s treatment recommendations and whether they will continue to see their doctor.”

The first-of-its-kind syllabus, published in the Journal of Patient Experience in August, borrows concepts, theories and models from the fields of service marketing, social psychology and management. It’s meant for medical students but can be adapted to dental or nursing programs, too, the research team reported.

Read more about the curriculum on the SF State News website

Happy 50th, EOP!

September marks the golden anniversary of the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) at SF State. For 50 years, the program has improved retention of historically underserved students through outreach, academic and financial support. Learn more about the EOP and plans to celebrate its milestone anniversary at

Be a Good Neighbor, Feed a Gator

Would you like to help feed a hungry Gator? The SF State Basic Needs Initiatives will be collecting donations for the Be a Good Neighbor, Feed a Gator emergency meal card program from Sept. 30 through Oct. 7. Meal cards are given to students experiencing food insecurity, providing them with 10 free meals at the City Eats dining hall on campus. Donate online.

Learn more about Be a Good Neighbor, Feed a Gator.

The Wear Movement is back

The Wear Movement is back and will begin collecting garments to reduce textile and clothing waste. In September and October, the program will be collecting clean sweaters, sweatshirts, hoodies and Halloween costumes. Please drop off your clean items at the Wear Movement pop-up shop in the Cesar Chavez building between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Wednesdays to give your used garments a chance at a new life. 

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.

Safety Champion of the Month award

The Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) Safety Champion of the Month award goes to Jay Ward, associate director of the Office of International Programs. Ward noticed that an individual at the Mashouf Wellness Center had become lightheaded while working out and was able to prevent him from falling. Ward will receive a pair of movie tickets and an EHS thanks for his quick thinking and fast reaction in preventing an injury.

Campus guest suite accommodations available

Conference & Event Services has a limited number of short-term guest suites available for visiting scholars, guests of the University, etc. The suites are available year-round. Please contact Conference & Event Services at ext. 8-3972 or for more details and availability information.

Academic Senate agenda

The SF State Academic Senate will hold its third meeting of the academic year Tuesday, Oct. 1, from 2 to 4 p.m. in the Nob Hill Room of the Seven Hills Conference Center. Visitors are welcome. 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 includes the following:

  • Proposed revisions to the Master of Science in Biology: Concentrations in Cell & Molecular Biology, Integrative Biology and Physiology & Behavioral Biology — second reading
  • Proposed resolution calling for CalPERS Fossil Fuel Fund Divestment — first reading
  • Proposed revisions to the Master of Arts in Museum Studies — consent item
  • Proposed Certification in Enterprise Cybersecurity — first reading
  • Experimental College update, Kathy Emery — information item

Review documents for Senate plenary.

October is Cyber Security Awareness Month

Under the overarching theme “Own IT. Secure IT. Protect IT.,” the 16th annual National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM) is focused on encouraging personal accountability and proactive behavior in security best practices and drawing attention to careers in cybersecurity. Weekly messages will be provided to reinforce these themes and provide actionable tips to drive digital safety. In addition, you’re invited to join Information Technology Services (ITS) for an informational cybersecurity session and Q&A on Tuesday, Oct. 15, from 3 to 4 p.m. in LIB 121. You can also stop by the ITS Campus Safety Week table to learn more about how to protect yourself online. Look for the table near Malcolm X Plaza Monday, Oct. 14, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

More NCSAM resources can be found on the ITS website.

TLC Tea & Pie info session, Sept. 30

The Center for Equity and Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CEETL) would like to invite the campus community to an information session on Teaching and Learning Communities (TLCs) and CEETL Fellow opportunities on Monday, Sept. 30, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. in LIB 242. There will be tea, pie and stimulating conversation with colleagues.

TLCs will be collaborative groups of passionate educators, facilitated by CEETL Fellows, who meet to develop their pedagogical excellence, so please bring a colleague (or three) to this information session. The CEETL Fellows program is open to tenured, tenure-track and lecturer faculty who have been at SF State at least three years. TLC participation is open to all faculty. Preference will be given to those who have not been a CEETL Fellow in the past, although all are welcome to apply.

CEETL Fellows will receive .20 course release for Spring 2020 with the possibility of renewal in Fall 2020. They will guide a Spring 2020 Teaching and Learning Community on a topic of their choice and lead a discussion section and workshop at the January faculty retreat.

TLCs will receive a number of exciting resources, including funds to spend on books, supplies or other resources; a space to meet; consultations with CEETL leadership members and instructional designers; and templates and guidance on TLC outputs. Participating in a TLC will also count towards completion of a Pedagogies of Inclusive Excellence (PIE) Certificate.

Please RSVP on the CEETL website so that enough pie can be ordered.

Coffee with a Cop, Oct. 2

The campus community is invited to the University Police Department’s annual “Coffee with a Cop” get-together from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 2, in the Plaza Level of the Cesar Chavez Student Center. Please join UPD for free coffee and conversation and get to know the officers of our campus community.

ITS to host MS Teams demos, Oct. 3 & Nov. 6

Information Technology Services (ITS) is pleased to offer two MS Teams in-person demos to campus this fall, one Oct. 3 and one Nov. 6. You may already use Teams for chat, but it has other great collaboration features. These demos will include:

  • Individual and group chat
  • Audio and video calls
  • Screen sharing
  • Setting up a team for your workgroup or department

Prior to attending a session, ITS recommends that users review the three-minute Microsoft Teams Interactive Demo. To learn more about the ITS Microsoft Teams service, go to the ITS service page. Seating is limited, so please register via Qualtrics.

Monday, Sept. 30

Connect Lecture Series: Jay Wall, RallyRally: noon in FA 153

Recital: Brite Zhou, piano: 1:10 p.m. in Knuth Hall, Creative Arts building

TLC Tea & Pie Info Session: 3:30 p.m. in LIB 242

Tuesday, Oct. 1

US-Iran Relations: Lost Opportunities?: 2 p.m. in HUM 587

Wednesday, Oct. 2

Master of Arts in Gerontology Prospective Student Informational Session: noon, online via Zoom

Recital: Bradley Hogarth, trumpet: 1:10 p.m. in Knuth Hall, Creative Arts building

Mindfulness: A Doorway to Creativity: 4 p.m., LIB 286

The Best of Yugoslav Cinema: “Innocence Unprotected”: 6:30 p.m. in the Coppola Theatre, Fine Arts building

Thursday, Oct. 3

Open Pedagogy Lunch & Learn: 11 a.m. in LIB 286

Graduate School Fair: noon in the Main Gym

Poetry reading: Fay Victor and Myra Melford: 1 p.m. in the Poetry Center (HUM 512)

Lectures in Design: Max Beach: 4 p.m. in LIB 286

MPA Prospective Student Informational Session: 6 p.m. at the Downtown Campus, room 617

Performance: Fay Victor and Myra Melford: 7:30 p.m. at the Center for New Music, 55 Taylor Street, San Francisco

Friday, Oct. 4

Men’s soccer vs. Stanislaus State: 12:30 p.m. at Cox Stadium

Recital: classical guitar students: 1:10 p.m. in Knuth Hall, Creative Arts building

Women’s soccer vs. Stanislaus State: 3 p.m. at Cox Stadium

Sunday, Oct. 6

Men’s soccer vs. Chico State: 11:30 a.m. at Cox Stadium

Women’s soccer vs. Chico State: 2 p.m. at Cox Stadium

Concert: Morrison Artists Series: Alexander String Quartet: 3 p.m. in the McKenna Theatre, Creative Arts building

Matsumoto says we’re wired to smile

Professor of Psychology David Matsumoto was quoted in an MSN Lifestyle list of “feel-good facts.”. The ability to smile is not a learned behavior, it is something we are born with, Matsumoto explains. “Individuals blind from birth could not have learned to control their emotions in this way through visual learning, so there must be another mechanism,” he said. “It could be that our emotions, and the systems to regulate them, are vestiges of our evolutionary ancestry.”

New book for Dariotis

Professor of Asian American Studies Wei Ming Dariotis co-edited and contributed to “Fight the Tower: Asian American Women Scholars’ Resistance and Renewal in the Academy.” To be published by Rutgers University Press Oct. 11, the book is a continuation of the Fight the Tower movement, a group of women of color dedicated to fighting injustices in academia. According to the website, the book’s essays “provide powerful portraits, reflections and analyses of a population often rendered invisible by the lies that sustain intersectional injustices in order to operate an oppressive system.”

Bagley on exercise as a mood-booster

Assistant Professor of Kinesiology Jimmy Bagley was quoted in a recent Big Think article about when to take a break from exercising. Often people will use stress as an excuse not to work out. Bagley recommends hitting the gym anyway — because breaking a sweat can also help you throw off a bad mood. “Exercise is physiological: Your blood flow to the brain increases, your breathing rate increases, and your heart rate increases. All of this is great for how you will feel a couple hours after completing an activity,” he said. “When you exercise, your body releases endorphins, and those go to your brain. They stimulate the sensors in your brain that are related to rewards

Soe discusses cultural identity, “Love Boat: Taiwan”

Associate Professor of Asian American Studies Valerie Soe was interviewed by Bloomberg Television about her documentary “Love Boat: Taiwan.” The film takes a close look at a long-running cultural enrichment program run by the Taiwanese government. According to Soe, the program is designed to create sympathetic allies overseas who can help check the threat posed by nearby China. “It’s a really smart way to get a lot of people interested in supporting your country through culture, through food, entertainment, music, whatever,” said Soe, who participated in the program in the 1990s. View the interview in its entirety.