February 5, 2016


Campus safety town hall meeting Feb. 11

The campus community is invited to attend a town hall meeting with President Wong from 1 to 3 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 11, in the Seven Hills Conference Center. No RSVP is required. Snacks and refreshments will be served.

University Communications AVP finalist surveys

Participants at the presentations by the two finalists for the associate vice president for Marketing and Strategic Communications position in University Communications, including faculty and staff who attended the Campus Forums, are encouraged to provide input. To do so, please complete the appropriate survey:

The search committee thanks the campus community for taking part in these events and providing feedback on the finalists' presentations.

Donor recognition in the Administration building lobby

The University's first comprehensive donor wall was installed in the lobby of the Administration building, across from the bursar. The wall will recognize donors who have given $50,000 or more in their lifetime to SF State. It will also honor members of the Roberts Legacy Society, donors who have identified a planned gift to the University in their estate plans.

Each year, the donor wall will be revised to recognize new donors who qualify for this honor.  We are pleased to have this opportunity to once again thank our major donors for their generosity and commitment to San Francisco State.

Commuter Check benefit for employees

Employees who ride BART or Muni to work can save money on their commute costs by using Commuter Check.

Commuter Check is a benefit available to all SF State employees by allowing workers to deduct as much as $255 monthly from their pre-tax pay for public transportation or vanpool fees. The money can be applied directly to a Clipper Card or a Commuter Check prepaid MasterCard that can be used to purchase transit passes.

Signing up is easy:

  1. Create an account at www.commutercheckdirect.com.
  2. Place the order.
  3. Redeem -- transit passes are automatically loaded onto the rider's Clipper Card each month.

Parking and Transportation is also introducing a new vanpool program that can be used with Commuter Check beginning March 1.​

Want to learn more about the vanpool program? Parking and Transportation and Enterprise Rideshare will host events to help employees improve their daily commute by saving money and time on March 3 and 4 from noon to 1:30 p.m. in LIB 121. Participants will learn of the many different incentives offered for alternative commutes that are unknown to many riders. To RSVP, email transprt@sfsu.edu or call ext. 8-2746: There are only 40 spaces available in each session. Light refreshments will be provided.

SF State: There's an app for that

Information Technology Services (ITS) has launched the new SF State mobile app. Features of the app include:

  • University Twitter and Facebook pages
  • Access to SF State news and events
  • Ability to pay tuition and other student fees
  • A campus map

Download the free app from Apple's App Store and Google Play.

Learn more about the app.

Academic Technology launches new websites

Academic Technology (AT) is proud to announce the launch of several new websites.

One central website for all AT services: at.sfsu.edu

Learn about the supported technologies, register for professional development opportunities and request a service at at.sfsu.edu for:

  • Troubleshooting computer and equipment issues
  • Audiovisual and classroom equipment loan and support
  • Workshops on teaching with technology
  • One-on-one instructional design services
  • iLearn help-desk services
  • Photography services
  • Digitization and media conversion
  • Graphics and video production
  • AT meeting rooms

Dedicated Support Documents Site: athelp.sfsu.edu

Easily access, search and browse AT's comprehensive collection of support documents and guides at athelp.sfsu.edu.

Mini-sites for AT initiatives

  • Affordable Instructional Materials: AT will help instructional faculty to lower the cost of course materials and give students more opportunities to succeed.
  • ePortfolio: ePortfolio.sfsu.edu offers a powerful way to holistically assess students' learning.
  • Quality Online Learning and Teaching: Learn about the most effective course design practices, teaching methods and technology integration strategies for online courses.
  • Course Redesign: AT provides support and funding for technology solutions that reduce bottlenecks that limit students' ability to progress toward graduation.

Questions or feedback? Email AT@sfsu.edu.

Campuswide ePortfolio platform to launch

Academic Technology, in partnership with Career Services and Alumni Relations, has good news for the SF State community: All students and alumni will soon have access to a free, robust and easy-to-use ePortfolio solution called Portfolium during their time at SF State and after they graduate. Students should receive an email invitation from Portfolium to join the SF State network on Feb. 11.  Faculty, staff and alumni will receive their invitation shortly after.

This campus-wide ePortfolio platform will allow all students to cultivate and share their academic, personal and professional accomplishments, build a professional online presence and connect with faculty, fellow Gators, alumni and future employers. All ePortfolio users retain complete control over ownership and who can see their ePortoflio content. 

More than 25 programs and departments already partner with Academic Technology to use ePortfolios for program-level assessment and accreditation purposes. If you are interested in an ePortfolio project for your department or program, or have any questions about this exciting new initiative, contact Academic Technology's ePortfolio team at eport@sfsu.edu or visit ePortfolio.sfsu.edu.

Advancing Student Success: A dialogue for University faculty, staff and administrators

The Student Success and Graduation Initiative Task Force (SSGI) and the César E. Chávez Institute (CCI) will co-sponsor a lunchtime reading and discussion series to examine factors that support or hinder student academic success.

The meetings will provide an informal forum for faculty and staff/administrators to jointly delve into key issues affecting students' academic achievement, informed by recent research. Each meeting will focus on a pre-circulated reading on a different topic -- unpacking research findings, then exploring their possible implications for how we serve our students.

Supporting undergraduate degree completion advances social justice and economic prosperity for the region, state and nation. Today, three-quarters of the fastest-growing occupations in the U.S. require education and training beyond a high school diploma, yet nearly half of students who begin a baccalaureate program are not able to finish within six years -- too many of them students of color or from low-income households.

The lunch dialogues will pilot this semester on the following Wednesdays from noon to 1 p.m. in the Faculty Commons (LIB 286):

No preregistration is required. Bring a lunch -- drinks and dessert will be provided.

For more information or to be included on future announcements, contact the Division of Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning at ueap@sfsu.edu or ext. 8-2206.

Return to top


Player's Club production of "Swimming in the Shallows," Feb. 4-14

Shark love, wedding dresses and Buddhism collide in the Player's Club production of "Swimming in the Shallows." Confronted at a crossroad in their lives, four friends discover their fears and hopes about love, independence and their own meaning of happiness. Throw in a surprisingly human shark and a desperately confused husband for a laugh-filled journey through the ups and downs of self-discovery.

Performances will take place in "the lab" in CA 104 at 7 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. on Sundays from Feb. 4 through Feb. 14. Cost is on a sliding scale from $5 to $10. Questions? Email theatredance@sfsu.edu.

Employee University classes still available

It's not too late to enroll in spring 2016 classes from Employee University. Check out the courses and sign up today:

  • Facilitating Change: Feb. 10 from 9 a.m. to noon
  • Leading Teams: Feb. 16 from 9 a.m. to noon
  • Verbal Skills for Limited English Speakers, Level 1 will meet on Fridays for 12 weeks from 7 to 8 a.m. Sessions will be held Feb. 19 and 26; March 4, 11, 18 and 25; April 1, 8, 15, 22 and 29; and May 6.

Know someone who might be interested in the classes listed above? Share this message or having them call the Employee University office at ext. 5-3540 to enroll in EU classes.

Employees may take one EU class per session. The current session began in October and will continue through February. Those with questions or comments should visit hr.sfsu.edu/employee-university or email eu@sfsu.edu.

Free 12-Week Mandarin Class, spring 2016

The Confucius Institute at SF State will present a free 12-week Mandarin class for faculty and staff from Feb. 16 to May 12. It will be offered in beginning, intermediate and advanced skill levels. Participating faculty and staff will receive free handouts, access to the Confucius Institute resources and guidance for taking the HSK Chinese Language proficiency tests in addition to saving the $200 course fee.

To register, submit a completed 2016 Spring Chinese Language Class registration form to the Confucius Institute by Feb. 15. It can also be sent by e-mail to teachci@sfsu.edu. The form is available for download from the Confucius Institute website. Questions? Contact the Confucius Institute at ext. 8-7624 or ext. 8-7631.

Candidates for WGS assistant professor of crip theory to visit

The Department of Women and Gender Studies (WGS) has invited four candidates for the position of assistant professor of crip theory to present public talks in February. Times, titles and locations will be announced closer to each date.

  • Feb. 16: Jina Kim, doctoral candidate in English and women's studies at University of Michigan
  • Feb. 18: Lezlie Frye, doctoral candidate in American studies at New York University; visiting lecturer in Women's studies at Hobart and William Smith College
  • Feb. 23: Hentyle Yapp, Ph.D. in performance studies from UC Berkeley; assistant professor in gender and women's studies at Pomona College
  • Feb. 25: Kelly Fritsch, Ph.D. in social and political thought; M.A. in critical disability studies from York University; Banting Postdoctoral Fellow in Women and Gender Studies at University of Toronto

Women and Gender Studies welcomes persons with disabilities and will provide reasonable accommodations upon request. To request reasonable accommodations for any of the events, contact Lisa Tresca at ltresca@sfsu.edu no later than one working week before the event date.

Tutelage and Treason: Greek Experiences of the Debt Crisis, Feb. 17

The Center for Modern Greek Studies and the Department of Anthropology are pleased to announce that Dr. Konstantinos Kalantzis, the Elios Charitable Foundation Visiting Professor in Modern Greek Studies, will present a free lecture discussing the effects of the debt crisis in Greece at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 17 in HUM 587. Questions? Contact Modern Greek Studies at modgreek@sfsu.edu or ext. 8-2068.

Peer health educator internship opportunity

The new Health Promotion & Wellness (HPW) unit is redesigning its peer health education program, which will launch in fall 2016. Among the changes, the unit will expand the roles of campus peer health educators to include experiences in needs assessment, research and committee involvement that will affect campus health and personal wellness. The peer health educators will have the opportunity to focus on one of nine specialty health topics:

  • Sexual Health
  • Wellness
  • Nutrition
  • Mental Health
  • Alcohol
  • Sexual Violence
  • Health Communication/Graphic Design
  • Men's Health
  • Campus Health Initiatives

The HPW team has developed some core components that will start this year, including a new recruitment strategy. Faculty are encouraged to select and nominate past or current students for one of these paid, part-time peer health educator positions. Interested in nominating a student? Contact Interim Director of Health Promotion & Wellness Rick Nizzardini at rnizzard@sfsu.edu by Feb. 24. Nominations are due March 1.

BUILD dialogue: Environment and health, Feb. 29

SF State and UCSF faculty and researchers are invited to join in a discussion and exploration of research opportunities on the interactions of environmental toxins, socioeconomic status and health. The dialogue will be held Feb. 29 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Faculty Commons (LIB 286). RSVP for the event at http://tinyurl.com/SFBUILD-Env-Health.

Questions? Send an email to stat@sfsu.edu.

CSU Tax Sheltered Annuity (403b) transition to Fidelity workshop

In order to assist our campus community to make the Tax Sheltered Annuity transition as smooth as possible, the Human Resources benefits department will host two transition workshops on March 2. Representatives from Fidelity will be available to answer any questions and provide guidance to faculty and staff affected by this transition. Both sessions will be held in LIB 121:

  • Morning: 10 a.m.-noon
  • Afternoon: 1:30-3:30 p.m.

To sign up for a session, RSVP by email to Lizbeth Ortiz at liortiz@sfsu.edu using the subject "RSVP for TSA Wkshp" and include the following information:

  • Name
  • Employee ID
  • The preferred session to attend

Save the date: Sneak Preview Day for future Gators, April 9

Admitted students can learn about SF State's academics, support services and campus life during Sneak Preview Day from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 9. The annual open house offers campus tours, financial aid information and advice on housing options to prospective students and their parents.

Representatives from the six SF State colleges will introduce students to the more than 100 majors offered at the University and discuss career possibilities. Information on student services and organizations will also be available.

Last year more than 12,000 prospective students and parents visited SF State on Sneak Preview Day. This year, the event is expected to draw more students and parents. It is highly recommended that participants take public transportation to campus on this day since parking in lots and on surrounding streets will be more scarce than normal.

Questions? Contact Student Outreach Services at outreach@sfsu.edu.

Become a Safe Zone ally

The SF State Safe Zone program is looking for staff, faculty and administrators to become Safe Zone allies for our campus LGBTQ community. The mission of the Safe Zone program is to foster a safe campus environment through building a support network for people of all gender and sexual identities. Safe Zone allies are active and visible volunteers who are open to talking to members of the LGBTQ community in a safe and supportive environment. To become a Safe Zone ally, interested volunteers must attend one of the training sessions that are offered throughout the year. The next training will be on Friday, April 22, from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the Library. A light lunch is provided.  Please contact Rick Nizzardini at rnizzard@sfsu.edu or ext. 8-7791 for further details about the training and check out our Safe Zone program online at www.sfsu.edu/~pride/safezone.html.

Return to top


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:

  • Chair's report
  • Report from VP of University Advancement Robert Nava (2:20 p.m.)
  • Report from ASCSU  (2:50 p.m.)
  • Report from Associated Students Inc. VP of External Affairs Naeema Charles regarding the proposed student transit fee (3:10 p.m.)
  • Recommendation from the Curriculum Review and Approval Committee regarding the proposal for a Pre-Health Certificate, first reading  (3:25 p.m.)
  • Recommendation from the Executive Committee regarding the proposed resolution in support of  the AB-798 College Textbook Affordability Act of 2015, first reading
  • Standing Committee Reports:
    • Academic Policies Committee
    • Curriculum Review and Approval Committee
    • Faculty Affairs Committee
    • Strategic Initiatives Committee
    • Student Affairs Committee

Nomination applications for distinguished faculty awards 2016

SF State annually acknowledges outstanding faculty members for their extraordinary, meaningful and lasting contributions in the areas of teaching, professional achievement and service. The awards, which were first instituted in 2007, are designed to highlight the outstanding accomplishments of faculty members. By recognizing the achievements of distinguished faculty in the areas of teaching, University service and professional achievement and growth, the campus community celebrates the University's climate of excellence.

Download the nomination form, which includes details about eligibility and the application process.

Visit the Academic Senate website and Faculty Honors and Awards Committee (FHAC) website.

Want to learn more about previous winners to aid in nominating outstanding faculty? Read the profiles of the award winners for the past six years:

The chair of the 2015-16 Faculty Honors and Awards Committee is Professor of Decision Sciences Ramesh Bollapragada.

Senate meeting dates are posted on the University Calendar and on the Senate website at senate.sfsu.edu.

Return to top



Music Lecturer Paul Ellison was the featured organ recitalist at the San Francisco Legion of Honor last weekend, where he performed the program "Transcription: the Impossible Art?" on the historic Ernest M. Skinner organ instrument.

Return to top


When organized

Beginning Jan. 26, The Weather Channel featured photos created by Professor of Music Jassen Todorov. "If I'm well organized -- which often times I'm not -- I can fly the plane, I can play my violin, I can teach, I can take pictures and I can take a second flight at sunset," Todorov said.

Not always the best

Professor of Cinema Joseph McBride was interviewed about the Academy Awards for a Jan. 29 Los Angeles Times article. "Orson Welles once said that what governs the Academy Awards aren't always the best films but what Hollywood [executives] make to impress one another," McBride said. "It's really an industry problem, and it's time for people to examine their consciences for what films they green-light. The scale of films is too narrow."

For more media coverage of faculty, staff, students, alumni and programs, see SF State in the News

Return to top