August 15, 2022

News & Announcements

Guy Smiling

On Aug. 1, SF State launched a new marketing campaign that will promote and reposition the University through TV commercials, social media, bus ads and more. Developed over the course of the last year in collaboration with a local marketing agency, the “My Story” campaign puts students and alumni in the spotlight, letting them tell how attending SF State changed their lives. The first video spots can be sampled on the campaign’s website,

Commercials are now airing on Comcast, and related outdoor advertising will spread throughout the Bay Area in the coming months. Digital ads will also roll out on streaming radio and tv, and other popular social media channels.

“It’s time we told our story through new marketing and branding, and no one could help us do that better than our students and graduates,” said Associate Vice President for Strategic Marketing and Communications Guisselle Nuñez. “By putting them front and center, we’re showing potential students the huge difference a San Francisco State education can make.”

Jose Antonio Vargas

Jose Antonio Vargas (B.A., ’04) became the voice for undocumented immigrants back in 2011 after coming clean about a closely guarded secret — he was not a U.S. citizen — in a New York Times essay he wrote about his life. Since then, he’s become an outspoken advocate for the undocumented, publishing a memoir and producing documentaries on the subject before founding his own media advocacy nonprofit Define America. And now the Gator is taking his advocacy back to the place that nurtured him as a young adult: the California State University (CSU).

Governor Gavin Newsom appointed Vargas to the CSU Board of Trustees Friday, July 22. Pending State Senate approval, he will join the 25-member board in adopting policies and regulations that govern the CSU system in areas such as educational policy, finance and campus planning. Lawyer and philanthropist Leslie Gilbert-Lurie was also appointed to serve as a CSU Trustee.

“Joining the CSU board is my way of giving back. And we must give back in whatever way we can,” Vargas said. “Because of its size, CSU is home to a truly diverse student body, which includes undocumented students of all backgrounds. My hope is to represent the diversity of the entire student body, and it’s crucial to remember that a student’s immigration status is only one part of that student’s humanity.”

Learn more about Vargas on SF State News.

Sophie Clavier (left) and Noah Price (right)

The University has named two interim deans: Sophie Clavier is interim dean for the College of Liberal & Creative Arts and Noah Price is interim dean of the Division of Career Planning and Graduate Studies.

Clavier’s one-year appointment began Aug. 8. She succeeds Andrew Harris, who has served as dean since 2016 and is the new executive vice chancellor at the University of Washington Tacoma.

“Sophie has served the University for over 26 years in a variety of roles: as an award-winning faculty member, department chair, graduate coordinator, associate dean and finally dean of Graduate Studies,” said Provost Amy Sueyoshi“Her deep commitment to the University’s core mission of academic excellence, educational equity and student success will prove invaluable in her new interim role. Interim Dean Clavier will be an exceptional leader as the college searches for a new dean.”

Clavier’s scholarship and publications have been in the areas of international law, peaceful settlement of international disputes and international human rights.

Joining LCA again is like coming home and sitting at its great big table of ideas, debates and innovation,” said Clavier. “In the coming year, as we search for a permanent dean, I look forward to serving the college’s amazing community of students, faculty and staff. Together we will continue the great work done by Dean Harris in nurturing student success, promoting creativity, scholarship and research and fostering staff professional development. I am grateful and honored to have this privilege.”

Clavier holds a master’s degree from SF State and earned her Ph.D. in international law from University of Paris.

Price will serve as interim dean of the Division of Career Planning and Graduate Studies for the upcoming academic year while Clavier fills her new role. He holds an M.A. in Education from SF State with a focus on equity and social justice and just earned his Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from San Jose State University. For his dissertation he explored the experiences of BIPOC and women STEM professionals in Silicon Valley enrolled in CSU graduate programs.

Price joined SF State 16 years ago as a Student Service professional and has since devoted his professional life to Graduate Studies in a variety of roles as the director of admissions and student services as well as the assistant dean. Currently he is the associate dean, a position he has held since 2018. He remains especially committed to issues of equity and inclusion at the graduate level.

“I am grateful for Noah’s love for this campus and am confident he will continue the excellent work of the Graduate Division as we further develop Career Services in the year to come,” said Provost Sueyoshi.

The Office of the President and the Academic Senate cordially invite you to the 2022 San Francisco State University Opening Convocation, which will be held both in person in McKenna Theater and virtually on Wednesday, Aug. 17. The schedule will be:

  • 8 a.m.: coffee and light continental breakfast, tables and displays
    Location: outside McKenna Theater on Holloway Ave.
  • 9:30 a.m.: Convocation presentations
    Location: McKenna Theatre

A reception immediately following at Don Nasser Plaza will welcome Provost Amy Sueyoshi. RSVP for the reception.

Join your SF State colleagues as we launch this academic year, welcome one another, recognize distinguished faculty and staff and introduce new members of our faculty. Information will be posted on the Convocation website as it becomes available, and the page will include a link for streaming, although it is hoped you can join in person. The event will also be broadcast outside in the coffee and reception area.

Let’s make this a fantastic start to our academic year!

As we welcome back the entire campus community for the fall semester, it is particularly important for us to be present for new and returning students to answer questions or provide directions. To that end, volunteers will once again staff tables around campus during the first week of in-person instruction.

Volunteers are needed to set up, table and clean up throughout the day from Aug. 22 through 26 between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Volunteers can sign up for shifts as short as two hours. Members of the staff are welcome to participate with the appropriate administrator approval.

If you have any questions, contact Victor Javier Aguilar at or Luis De Paz Fernandez at or call the Office of the President at (415) 338-1381.   

Brief training and preparation sessions will be held this week. More information will be sent to those who sign up.

GatorFest! officially kicked off Saturday, Aug. 13, when the largest number of students returned to campus since 2020. New students are moving into their residential communities, and current students are returning to campus. During the first eight weeks of the semester, GatorFest! will welcome them while celebrating what it means to an SF State student.

GatorFest! will continue to host our campus traditions, such as an entering-class photo and an entering-year pinning ceremony featuring a uniquely designed SF State pin, while helping students start strong academically and connect socially through extended orientation workshops and student life events. In addition, fall 2022 brings forth an array of new events bringing students together to build friendship and community, explore San Francisco and celebrate the start of their college journey.

The campus community, current students, staff and faculty are encouraged to welcome new students from move-in through the eight weeks of GatorFest! programming. Learn more on the New Student & Family Programs website. Go Gators!

The University Budget Committee (UBC) seeks nominations to fill two staff representative seats to join the committee. Represented staff from campus labor unions (non-faculty, non-management employees) are welcome to self-nominate or nominate a peer. Staff representatives are voting members and will serve a two-year term of service beginning September 2022.The nomination form can be found on the UBC website. The deadline to return the completed form is 1 p.m. Monday, Aug. 22.

Comprised of faculty, staff, students and administrators, the UBC is charged with serving as a deliberative body that provides the San Francisco State University president with ongoing advice and recommendations related to budget policy, planning and assessment. Members of the UBC, with a shared commitment to transparency in fiscal decision-making, serve to inform the University and community about budget matters and bring concerns of students, faculty and staff to the administration. It generally meets monthly, holding additional meetings as needed. Please contact Liesl Violante at with any questions.

Nominations for the inaugural Staff Council are open now online through 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 22. For those with limited access to a computer, nomination forms can be picked up in ADM 252. Consider nominating yourself or someone else (check with them first) to participate in elections. The council will be composed of up to 35 seats distributed with representatives from Units 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and C99 employees as stated in Article IV of the Staff Council Constitution. Elections will be held Aug. 29 – Sept. 9.

The first plenary is scheduled for Sept. 30 at 9 a.m.; councilors will vote on additional meeting times and for leadership roles. If elected, administrator approval via Docusign is required to attend. Meetings are likely once a month for one hour and one additional plenary session each quarter. Changes may require additional approval.

Be a part of SF State’s newest innovation in shared governance. Email questions to Staff Council Steering Committee: Elections Committee Representative Teddy Albiniak at

The Retirement Association at SF State is pleased to announce the resumption of its Travel Grants program starting in the spring of 2023. The association will provide 10 grants of $1,000 each for travel related to employment at SF State.

Please note: There will be five grants allotted to deserving faculty members and five grants allotted to deserving staff members. Travel grants are designed to support such activities as travel to conferences and conventions, special meetings related to University issues and other relevant professional projects.

Watch for an announcement in CampusMemo describing these awards and the application period. The announcement will include a website address for the application.

Meet new colleagues who share your interests via Human Resources’ Employee Resource Groups. These groups are voluntary and can provide social opportunities to find common ground and share resources. Help us build a strong campus community by joining (or creating) one. Some offer paid memberships, some are at no cost. Find your group to connect, engage and interact. Employee Resource Groups are posted on the Human Resources website or can be found on the Human Resources website

Many campus departments are looking forward to hiring student employees for the fall term. Please refer to the updated Student Employment Hiring Checklist available in the Student Employment Manager Toolkit on the Dean of Students’ website to help guide a successful hiring process. Remember, students may not begin work until their I-9 Verification for employment eligibility is completed and hiring packet submitted through DocuSign. International students must first visit the Office of International Programs to begin the hiring process before they go through the I-9 Verification. Campus jobs for students are posted on CSLD’s Handshake. For more information, please email the Dean of Students Office at

Open enrollment for the Children’s Campus preschool and toddler program for 2022-2023 is now open. The preschool and toddler program is a full-day, year-round program offered Monday through Friday for children ages 6 months to 5 years.

Children’s Campus provides a play-based curriculum that supports children’s natural curiosity and exploration within a safe, supportive and nurturing environment and which promotes their social, emotional, physical, language, literacy and cognitive development in an integrated fashion. Priority enrollment is offered for children of SF State faculty and staff. Community families are also welcome.

Programs are eligible for the University’s Dependent Care Reimbursement Program, through which employees may allocate up to $5,000 per year pre-tax for child care. Visit the Children’s Campus website for more information.

Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) has selected Elaine Yu-Zhang Lin, lead custodian for Facilities Housing, for the $50 Make Safety Happen Champion of the month award.

At 7 p.m. on Saturday, July 9, Lin responded to a report of water leaking in a housing unit at 235 Buckingham Way in University Park North. She was able to put together a crew of 17 custodial workers who immediately begin the process of drying out the unit and the five units beneath it. This crew worked from 7 p.m. until 2 a.m. and significantly reduced the presence of moisture in the affected units. Based on a discussion between Michael Beatty, SF State’s risk manager, and the insurance claims adjustor, EHS was advised that Lin’s quick actions saved the campus tens of thousands of dollars.

EH&S and Risk Management would like to thank and recognize Lin and the crew of custodial workers for their hard work and fast response.

The Center for Equity and Excellence in Teaching and Learning’s (CEETL) instructional design team invites all faculty to join its Bridging Canvas course in preparation for the upcoming phased transition to the Canvas Learning Management System (LMS). This fully online, self-paced and asynchronous course is designed to support faculty in transitioning from iLearn to Canvas. The course offers resources, activities and discussions for faculty adjusting their pedagogical and course design approaches to a new LMS.

In the Bridging Canvas course, participants will:

  • Be introduced to the basic instructional features in Canvas, such as Assignments, Discussions, Pages, Modules and more
  • Consider how Canvas is similar to and different from iLearn
  • Build on their expertise in pedagogies of equitable and inclusive learning to adapt their courses to a new LMS
  • Apply real-world practices for diversifying assessment and student collaborations through Universal Design for Learning (UDL)
  • Share their own expertise in Canvas if they have used it in other programs and institutions

Course completions are not eligible for stipends. Stipends for faculty completion of CEETL course offerings were made possible through one-time emergency federal funding (CARES and HEERF) for COVID-19. This funding source has concluded as of April 25, 2022.

The course opens Tuesday, Aug. 16. Enroll on the Canvas website.

The Office of Emergency Services is happy to announce Active Threat Training and Stop the Bleed training sessions on Wednesday, Sept. 7, and Tuesday, Sept. 13. Both trainings are open to all students, staff and faculty.

Active Threat training will help you learn how to identify threats, move quickly to a safe location, know the best place to hide to protect yourself until help arrives and, as a last resort, fight to defend yourself. It is vital that you understand the best course of action to protect yourself and those around you during an Active Threat situation. Training sessions will be held 1 – 5 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 7, and 8 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Sept. 13. Sign up now via Qualtrics.

Stop the Bleed is an initiative to train the public on the basics of controlling life-threatening bleeds. A person can bleed out in a matter of minutes if proper actions are not taken. With this training you can acquire the knowledge and skills to save a life. A certificate of completion will be given to all participants at the end of the training, which runs 8 a.m. to noon Wednesday, Sept. 7, and 1 – 5 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 13. Register via Qualtrics.

All trainings will be held in person in LIB 121. The trainings are limited to 50 participants per session, so sign up now. Snacks will be provided.

Through a Department of Education AANAPISI grant, the Responsive Education for Access, Community, and Hope (REACH) faculty learning community is collaborating with REACH faculty in the College of Ethnic Studies and staff in the Office of Student Financial Aid to offer an online asynchronous course for SF State faculty teaching general education courses who would like to incorporate financial literacy into their classrooms. The REACH faculty learning community will focus on providing reflections, information and resources on financial aid and financial literacy from an ethnic studies perspective. The format of the REACH Faculty Learning Community (FLC) is asynchronous and will take 20 hours to complete.

  • In this online course, participants will:
  • Reflect and develop understanding of first-generation, students of color, community and cultural wealth
  • Understand the importance of financial literacy for student success
  • Review the online student portals and located resources that can best assist students with financial literacy and success
  • Create a community as a cohort of instructors
  • Apply community responsive practices in creating supportive, engaging educational curricula focused on equity, social justice and critical financial literacy
  • Build an action plan on redesigning a General Education course to incorporate financial literacy in the classroom

The course will run from Sept. 9 to Dec. 31, 2022. A face-to-face kickoff luncheon will be held from noon to 2 p.m. Friday, Sept. 9. Faculty who complete the course will receive $1,000.

Sign up via Qualtrics


Assistant Professor of Design Fernando Carvalho is among 51 educators to receive a teaching grant from online learning platform Course Hero, supporting faculty “dream projects.”

Carvalho’s Product Design II course will be based on and inspired by the works of Diébédo Francis Kéré, the 2022 Pritzker Architecture Prize Winner, particularly his extensive work on educational environments. Students will research and learn from Kéré’s projects to then work on two major assignments: designing classroom furniture for different age groups and educational purposes; and creating a vertical garden structure for a middle school setting.

Zubaida Qamar, assistant professor of Nutrition and Dietetics, recently co-wrote an article, “Campus‐based programmes to address food insecurity vary in leadership, funding and evaluation strategies,” in the Nutrition Bulletin journal.

In the article, authors from several universities present findings on a study articulating how food insecurity initiatives are implemented and assessed with regard to management, funding and evaluation across several campuses.

The National Association of Social Workers (NWSA) featured Caitlin Ryan, director of the Family Acceptance Project, on its Social Work Speaks podcast. She discusses her work to establish the field of family support for LGBTQ children and youth.

Ryan has a decades-long career in LGBTQ health and mental health that has garnered more than 50 awards from professional, civic and community groups, including the 1988 NWSA Social Worker of the Year for her pioneering work in the AIDS pandemic. She works with organizations, faith communities, families and providers to integrate the project’s family-based support approach to build healthy futures for LGBTQ and gender diverse young people across disciplines, services and systems. Her work is changing how families nurture their LGBTQ children and how services are provided across systems of care.

The Family Acceptance Project is a program of the Marian Wright Edelman Institute.

A study of students who successfully completed an academic success course showed that they benefited academically from what they learned. Professor of Recreation, Parks and Tourism and Holistic Health Studies Adam Burke published the findings in the journal Active Learning in Higher Education on July 24.

Given the important role of teaching at SF State, a novel general education academic success course was developed and tested. Results showed that students who successfully completed the course achieved higher cumulative GPAs overall compared with matched peers. Results also showed that the course significantly benefited students from historically at-risk populations. Students also showed positive changes in academic self-efficacy and use of effective learning strategies.

A July 15 story in McKnight’s Long-Term Care News features Gerontology Lecturer Edwin Cabigao for his work as director of clinical services at Generations Healthcare. The chain operates 30 skilled nursing, transitional care and assisted living facilities in California and Nevada.

Cabigao (B.S., ’03; M.A., ’05), who led Generations’ COVID-19 response, insists patient care must continue to remain the top priority, even as staffing and fiscal challenges have replaced the pressure of understanding the virus.

“If you put clinical at the forefront of the business, if you put patient care at the very front of operations, everything will follow,” Cabigao said.

Huge screens and jump scares aren’t enough to lure people to the movies, associate professor of History Felicia Viator writes in a July 22 opinion piece for The Washington Post. Reflecting on the “3D frenzy” of the 1950s and gimmicks of the past, Viator says what audiences really have always wanted is something different.

“If moviegoers are seeking just a novel experience, such efforts may work only in the short-term, as was the case in the 1950s,” she wrote. “But the technology’s long-term success depends on people searching for something else — something that’s just as electrifying and impossible to replicate at home on the couch: collective joy.”

Viator also discussed this topic on the Aug. 9 edition of KQED-FM’s “Forum.”

With “Easter Sunday” comes the first major studio feature film starring an all-Filipino ensemble. Eric Pido, assistant professor of Asian American Studies, told the Associated Press that the film’s release coincides with “this really amazing moment in Asian American history and Filipino American history, where political, social and economic capital has all come together.”

He predicts younger generations will raise the profile of Filipinos.

“I think Filipino Americans are no longer shying away from sort of taking a representational role in American politics, which will bring up all sorts of interesting things about Filipino American culture that lots of folks just don’t think about,” Pido said.

Asian American Studies Professor Jonathan H.X. Lee shared commentary on U.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s recent trip to Taiwan. In The Conversation on Aug. 3, he explains why many of Pelosi’s constituents are not intensely invested in the escalating political tensions in the South China region. He outlines four key points: the visit won’t turn voters away from her, voters have higher priorities, Chinese Americans are not a homogenous voting bloc and the visit won’t have a major impact on foreign relations.

“I think the question of whether or not it will affect her constituents in San Francisco is a very interesting question,” Lee wrote. “And I think it’s exciting, because it reveals the diversity in terms of understanding Chinese Americans versus Taiwanese Americans.”

Lee also discussed this issue on Aug. 9 on “Morning Wave in Busan,” a radio program in South Korea.

The SF State student chapter of the International City and County Management Association is one of three winners of the association’s Best Chapter Event Contest for its “Breaking into Public Service” virtual panel. Associate Professor of Public Affairs and Civic Engagement Ernita Joaquin is the adviser to the SF State chapter.

The chapter’s virtual panel introduced students to the experiences of four public service panelists and allowed the 26 attendees to gain insights into career direction and tips for landing roles. Chapter President Steven Lee moderated the panel.

In June, Point Blue Conservation Science named Public Administration Professor Sheldon Gen to its board of directors. Point Blue is a California-based nonprofit with global reach on issues of environmental conservation and nature-based climate action.

Gen has served on Point Blue’s science advisory committee for two years and now joins Professor of Geography and Environment Ellen Hines on the board, along with 20 others from business, civic and academic leadership. Point Blue CEO Manuel Oliva said Gen was selected to the board for his “knowledge, leadership and insights” on nonprofits engaged in environmental policy advocacy. His charge is to help enhance the organization’s impact on public policy.