September 2, 2016


Lori Beth Way named interim dean of Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning

Lori Beth Way has been named interim dean of Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning, a division she joined in 2015 as associate dean of academic planning. Since her arrival at SF State, she has worked closely with faculty across campus on assessment and accreditation efforts, curriculum development and academic program review, as well as General Education and Writing Across the Curriculum/Writing Across the Disciplines. Previously, Way served as senior advisor for undergraduate education at Emerson College, where she oversaw campuswide assessment, program review, faculty development and other academic programs. In 1999, she started her career as a faculty member in political science at California State University, Chico, where she earned the rank of professor. She was a leader in the Academic Senate and played an instrumental role in the design and implementation of Chico’s General Education Program. She earned her Ph.D. in political science from the Maxwell School of Public Affairs and a graduate certificate in women’s studies at Syracuse University.

While leading the Division of Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning, Way will direct initiatives in faculty-led curriculum design (funded by the Teagle Foundation) and pre-major pathways (the “Causeways” initiative, funded by the Keck Foundation). As co-chair of SF State’s Student Success and Graduation Initiative with Interim AVP and Dean of Students Mary Ann Begley, she will further support and lead campus efforts to strengthen students’ academic achievement and degree progress.

Presidential election course open to all aims to cut through noise

If you had to create a list of events that only occur every four years, it might include leap year, the Olympics, the World Cup and the U.S. presidential election. But at SF State, it also includes the Presidential Election Public Lecture Series, offered by the Department of Political Science. And in an election year that has been repeatedly called the most “unprecedented” ever, exploring the key issues will be the main focus of the class. Students and the public can attend the 100-minute lectures in SF State’s McKenna Theatre on Tuesdays at 4:10 p.m. or view them online 24-hours later.

Read more at SF State News:

SF State VITA program wins national recognition

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recognized the Beta Chi chapter of the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program at SF State as “superior" for excelling in total return preparation and total volunteer hours. The award was presented to Ben Gid, president of the SF State Beta Chi Chapter, at the August 2016 Beta Alpha Psi Annual Meeting held in Baltimore. Only 28 of the nearly 300 U.S. Beta Alpha Psi chapters were recognized, and only the University of Utah also received the “superior” designation.

VITA is an IRS program designed to help low- and moderate-income taxpayers complete their annual tax returns at no cost. Gary Iskowitz, a former associate professor at California State University, Northridge, founded the program in 1971. It grew from a small group of dedicated accounting students to what is now a nationwide program that serves millions of taxpayers and provides a valuable learning experience for accounting students.

Read more about VITA’s recognition.

Athletic Advisory Board faculty nominations sought

The Academic Senate seeks nominations of full-time faculty to be a part of the Athletic Advisory BoardRead more about the call for nominations.

Become a Safe Zone ally

The SF State Safe Zone program is looking for staff, faculty and administrators to become safe zone allies for the campus LGBTQQIA community. The Safe Zone program’s mission is to foster a safe campus environment by 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 LGBTQQIA community in a safe and supportive environment. To become a Safe Zone ally, volunteers must attend one of the training sessions that are offered throughout the year. The next training will be Friday, Oct. 28, from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the Library. A light lunch will be provided. Contact Rick Nizzardini at or ext. 8-7791 for further details about the training, and check out the Safe Zone program online at

Free 10-week Chinese language and culture classes

The Confucius Institute at SF State will once again waive the fee for faculty and staff to take classes in the Mandarin language (basic, intermediate and upper intermediate) and Chinese culture during the fall 2016 semester. The language courses normally cost $260 each, and the culture class is usually $150. All classes will begin Sept. 12 and run through Nov. 18.

Submit a completed registration form to BH 325 by Sept. 8. For more information, visit, call ext. 8-7631 or email

SF State is #1 in the nation for Gilman Awardees

The opportunity to study in another country for a year may feel financially challenging —especially for students who rely heavily on financial aid — but for at least 35 Pell Grant recipients, this is not the case. They have been awarded a Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship to help fund their study abroad programs next spring semester. For fall 2016, they each will receive scholarships ranging from $2,000 to $8,000. Collectively, they have earned $157,500 in grant money.

With 35 recipients for fall 2016, SF State ranks first nationally in the number of awardees. Gilman continues to be an important source of study abroad funding for SF State students, the majority of whom receive financial aid.

The facilitators of the Gilman Scholarship at the Institute of International Education (IIE) recognize the immense value and importance of international experiences. International education, according to Allan Goodman, president and CEO of IIE, “is one of the best tools for developing mutual understanding and building connections between people from different countries. It is critical to the success of American diplomacy and business, and the lasting ties that Americans make during their international studies are important to our country in times of conflict as well as times of peace.”

For fall, Gilman received more than 2,900 applications and offered awards to more than 850 students across the United States. SF State and the Office of International Programs congratulate the 35 SF State students who will have the opportunity to study abroad with the financial support of a Gilman Scholarship.

More full text online, so fewer print subscriptions

As more magazines and journals publish their current issues online, the Library is transitioning current subscriptions to provide full text electronic access from anywhere anytime, so the number of print subscriptions has declined significantly. Patrons who are accustomed to using the print version of current magazines and journals from the stacks on the third floor are asked to check the online catalog and electronic journal list on the Library's website. Users who have questions about the status of a particular magazine or journal title should email

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Internship and Service-Learning Fair, Wednesday, Sept. 7

The Institute for Civic and Community Engagement will host the 2016 Internship and Service-Learning Fair on Wednesday, Sept. 7, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Quad. Read more about the fair or visit the fair web page.

Africana Studies presents “Mbongi Talk” series

Associate Professor of Africana Studies Serie McDougal’s presentation “Mbongi Talk: Black Social Fathers” will cover the results of semi-structured interviews with 24 black social fathers. (A “social father” is a man who marries or lives with a child’s mother but is not the biological father). The interviews were conducted to understand their reasons for assuming fatherly roles, the impacts on the children, how their non-biological father status affects their parenting experiences, their treatment of their biological children compared with their non-biological children and how the men are affected by the experience of social fathering. The presentation will be held Wednesday, Sept. 7, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in room 116 of the Ethnic Studies/Psychology Building.

Many African American family researchers are unclear about the nature of the ancient African family paradigm, though some assert that African families were matriarchal while others conclude that African families were patriarchal. Professor Emeritus of Ethnic Studies Oba T'Shaka will present his empirical research on north, west, east, central and south Africa as it relates to African American families in a “Mbongi Talk” presentation entitled “Twin-Lineal Families: The Historical and Cultural Paradigm for African and African American Families.” The presentation is scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 5, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in room 116 of the Ethnic Studies/Psychology Building.

Constitution Day Conference, Sept. 15-16

The annual SF State Constitution and Citizenship Day conferences will be held Sept. 15-16. Learn more about Constitution Day 2016 or visit the Constitution and Citizenship Day conferences web page.

Representative Speier to host Peace Corps opportunities event Sept. 16

Congresswoman Jackie Speier will host a meeting about volunteer opportunities with the Peace Corps on Friday, Sept. 16, from 2:30 to 4 p.m. at the San Mateo City Council Chambers (330 West 20th Ave., San Mateo). Read more about the event or sign up for the Peace Corps event.

“Artivism and Climate Justice” event, Sept. 21

The campus community is invited to attend the “Artivism and Climate Justice” event on Wednesday, Sept. 21, from 7 to 9 p.m. in LIB 121. “Artivism” is the nexus of art and activism to bring about change. Speakers will include:

Ashel (Ashley) Eldridge, a.k.a. Seasunz, is a green hip-hop artist, poet and climate justice/spiritual activist with the multimedia arts collective and spiritual activist movement group Earth Amplified. Eldridge also teaches in SF State’s Department of Race and Resistance Studies and at the Alliance for Climate Education, and he serves as a Green for All Fellow. Seasunz is a co-founder of United Roots, Oakland’s Green Youth Arts and Media Center, where he serves as the health and sustainability coordinator.

David Solnit is an internationally known artist and activist who has contributed to the anti-nuclear, anti-war, anti-globalization, human rights and climate justice movements. He is the North American arts organizer for, co-founder of Art and Revolution and author of “Globalize Liberation: How to Uproot the System and Build a Better World.”

The event is sponsored by the SF State Climate Justice Initiative. For more information, contact American Indian Studies Lecturer Phil Klasky at

Symposium in honor of the “The Watermelon Woman” anniversary, Sept. 23-24

The campus community is invited to a “Black/Feminist/Lesbian/Queer/Trans* Cultural Production” Friday, Sept. 23, and Saturday, Sept. 24. The symposium will honor the 20th anniversary of Assistant Professor of Cinema Cheryl Dunye’s film “The Watermelon Woman,” the first feature film directed by and starring a black lesbian. Production of this film marked a watershed moment for black cinema, feminist cinema, lesbian cinema and new queer cinema.

The event will include one-and-a-half days of film screenings, panels, performances, readings and art. Please join us in honoring Dunye’s growing body of work as well as her cultural legacy. The event is free (there is an optional $25 VIP reception on Saturday night). The symposium will feature a keynote conversation with filmmaker Dee Rees, whose credits include “Pariah” (2011) and “Bessie” (2015), and a plenary panel with scholars Jennifer Devere Brody (professor of theatre and performance studies, Stanford), Kara Keeling (associate professor of critical studies and American studies in ethnicity, USC), and Yvonne Welbon (creative producer, Chicken & Egg Pictures).

RSVP for the “Black/Feminist/Lesbian/Queer/Trans* Cultural Production.” Questions? Email

Writing Pedagogy Workshops for faculty, Sept. 26

The Division of Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning and Writing Across the Curriculum/Writing in the Disciplines (WAC/WID) invite faculty to the fall Writing Pedagogy Workshops. This month’s workshop, “Effective Design and Sequencing of Writing Assignments,” will be co-facilitated by Juliana van Olphen (director of WAC/WID) and Jennifer Swanson (associate director of WAC/WID). The workshop will provide an overview of best practices in designing writing assignments and scaffolding writing skills across those assignments. The workshop will be held Monday, Sept. 26, from noon to 1 p.m. in the Faculty Commons (LIB 286). Lunch will be served. RSVP by Sept. 19 to

The other workshops this term are scheduled for noon to 1 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 24, and Monday, Nov. 28, also in the Faculty Commons. Please contact Juliana van Olphen or Jennifer Swanson for further information.

Save the date: Women’s Leadership Conference, Oct. 21

The SF State Women’s Leadership Conference will take place Friday, Oct. 21, at the Seven Hills Conference Center. Staff, faculty and students are welcome to attend this free all-day conference, which will feature breakout sessions focusing on personal and career development. Stay tuned for more info on registration, conference agenda and session topics.

Reduced price deadline extended for “Adriatic Embrace” 2017 scholarship cruise

The University Women’s Association (UWA) will host a 12-day “Adriatic Embrace” cruise on the Oceania Cruises ship Sirena from Aug. 30 to Sept. 11, 2017. The cruise’s destination-intensive itinerary will explore 11 ports in six countries, including a mix of historic sites, boutique ports, seaside villages and an overnight stop in Venice. Like the UWA’s previous 21 cruises, the “Adriatic Embrace” will raise funds for the organization’s student scholarship programs.

Also, cruise prices have been reduced by approximately $800 per person.

  • Inside G, now $4,199/person (was $4,999)
  • Window C2, now $5,099/person (was $5,999)
  • Veranda B2, now $6,099/person (was $6,899)

Update: The deadline to receive additional amenities from Oceania has been extended to Sept. 30, 2016. Amenities include free on-board internet access and a choice of four free shore excursions or a beverage package or shipboard credits. UWA group-exclusive amenities for all participants include pre-paid gratuities, a $100 spa or shipboard credit and a “Dollars for Scholars” contribution by Oceania for every 15 participants. Airfare is included. For more information, visit or email Lin Ivory.

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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
  • Senate Procedural Overview by Vice Chair Hackenberg
  • Guest speaker: President Les Wong
  • Guest speaker: Interim Provost Jennifer Summit
  • Information Item: Approval for the establishment of the Department of Race and Resistance Studies (at 2:45 p.m.)
  • Guest speaker: Vice President of Administration and Finance Ron Cortez
  • Recommendation from the Executive Committee regarding proposed Standing Committee appointments (consent item)
  • Recommendation from the Strategic Issues Committee regarding proposed revisions to the Strategic Issues Committee charge (first reading)
  • Committee Nominations
    • Baccalaureate Review Committee: One position (2016-17)
      • Erik Rosegard, Chair of Department of Recreation, Parks and Tourism, HSS
    • Athletic Advisory Board: Three positions (2016-17)
  • Standing Committee Reports:
    • Academic Affairs Committee
    • Curriculum Review and Approval Committee
    • Faculty Affairs Committee
    • Strategic Issues Committee
    • Student Affairs Committee

New senator orientation will immediately following the plenary meeting.

Senate meeting dates are posted on the University Calendar and on the Senate website at

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English Language and Literature and Modern Greek Studies

On June 27, Professor of English Language and Literature and Modern Greek Studies Martha Klironomos presented the paper “Lawrence Durrell and His Literary Circle: Archiving the World War II Experience in Greece” at the biennial conference of the International Lawrence Durrell Society, “On Miracle Ground XIX.” The conference, which was held at the University of Crete in Rethymnon, Crete, had the theme “World War II in Greece.”


Professor Emeritus of History Bill Issel was awarded the American Catholic Historical Association’s (ACHA) Distinguished Achievement Award for Scholarship. The award is bestowed on a scholar who has, during a long career, made a significant impact on the understanding of Catholic history. The recognition is not for one book or any single piece of scholarship, but for a sustained series of contributions which have fundamentally animated the research of others besides being significant in their own right. The award will be presented at the joint meeting of the ACHA and the American Historical Association in Denver on Jan. 7, 2017.

Modern Languages and Literatures

Professor of Modern Languages and Literatures Ilona Vandergriff’s book “Second Language Discourse in the Digital World” was published by John Benjamins Publishing Company. The book offers a state-of-the-art examination of digital technology in second-language learning that begins with what users actually do with their second language when they communicate with others online. Exploring themes such as multilingualism, literacy and identity in different online spaces from Facebook to World of Warcraft, Professor Vandergriff offers a fascinating look at language learning in a connected world.

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Lack of coordination

An Aug. 22 New York Times article on Iran’s withdrawal of permission for Russia’s use of an Iranian airbase included insights from Associate Professor of History Maziar Behrooz. According to Behrooz, the flap signaled “a lack of coordination between the Iranians and Russians” over the deal’s secrecy.

Everybody’s experience is different

Professor of American Indian Studies Andrew Jolivette commented on the complexities associated with describing persons with mixed racial identities for an Aug. 25 KPCC-FM broadcast. Unsure whether to use the term “mixed race,” “multiracial” or another term? Ask the person what they prefer, “because we all have different experiences,” Jolivette said. “I don’t think we should create universal truths for everybody. Everybody’s experience is different, even if we’re the same mix.”

Covering all bases

An Aug. 25 San Francisco Chronicle article on the power and political influence of U.S. pharmaceutical companies in relation to Proposition 61, which is being touted as “the California Drug Price Relief Act,” included comments from Professor of Health Education Ramón Castellblanch. “The industry is extraordinarily powerful,” Castellblanch said. “They are extremely well financed, they give a lot of money to both sides [Republicans and Democrats] and they manage to have their way.”

Legitimizing a bad practice

Assistant Professor of Economics Sepideh Modrek commented on the issue of Egyptian medical doctors helping to legitimize the practice of female genital mutilation in their country for an Aug. 26 Science Blog report. “We found that it’s true some women were planning to do it [cut] anyway and are just going to the doctor for harm reduction,” Modrek said. “But others are confused. They have heard mixed messages and don’t know what to do and are looking to the doctor for the final decision. And that’s the problem with medicalization — it is essentially legitimizing the practice.” Modrek was the lead author on the study while an instructor of medicine at Stanford.

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

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Professor Emerita Lilly Berry passed away Aug. 5 at Foxbridge Assisted Living and Memory Care in Memphis after a long struggle with Alzheimer’s disease. She was also a long-term breast cancer survivor. She was 76.

Berry was born in Walnut Ridge, Arkansas, on Oct. 16, 1939, to Susan Ruth Derryberry Berry (nee Hart) and David Albert Berry. She received a bachelor of arts in psychology in 1969 (cum laude), a master's of art in industrial/organizational psychology in 1972, a Ph.D. in industrial/organizational psychology in 1979 and completed her post-doctoral study in cognitive psychology in 1979-80 at UCLA.

Berry’s extended family included full-, half- and step-siblings. She immensely enjoyed learning, and her older half-sister, Laura Lavada Campbell (nee Derryberry), was instrumental in affording her the opportunity to attend primary and secondary school. She was married twice, first to Bill Clark and then to Adam Pierce. While attending UCLA, she met her lifelong friend and partner Sam Palmer.

Berry joined SF State’s Psychology Department in 1981 and was an integral part of the department’s nationally ranked industrial/organizational graduate program, serving as the program’s coordinator until her retirement in 2004. She published many scholarly articles as well as two seminal textbooks in the field, “Psychology at Work: An Introduction to Industrial Psychology” (1997) and “Employee Selection” (2002). Berry chaired the department for two years, beginning in 1994. Berry was also a part of the interdisciplinary faculty of the well-respected Masters of Public Administration program at SF State, providing expertise in the areas of human resources management and organizational theory. Her many contributions to the University include chairing the University’s Promotion Committee.

After retirement, she established the Lilly M. Berry Scholarship Endowment fund in psychology stating, “I believe in the power of public education. I have not forgotten those whom I never knew personally but who helped me many years ago to get my education.”

Upon retirement, Berry moved to Port Townsend, Washington, to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming an artist and to live near longtime friends Robyn and Richard Watkyns. She enjoyed many years in Port Townsend, attending art classes, developing her artistic talents and exhibiting her art in local shows.

Berry was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2013. With the assistance of her niece Vonda Derryberry and friends Robyn and Richard Watkyns, she relocated to Memphis to be closer to family. She is survived by her brother, Delmer Berry; nieces, Lynn Tennison, Wilma “Billie” Snell, Glennis Cove, Vonda Derryberry, Jacqueline Williams and Delilah Berry; nephews, Harry Williams, Troy Berry, Kirby Berry and Terry Derryberry; and several great nieces and nephews, cousins, extended family members, friends and former colleagues at SF State.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Susan Ruth Derryberry Berry (née Hart) and David Albert Berry, and siblings, James Derryberry, Laura Lavada Cambell (nee Derryberry), Renee Williams (nee Derryberry), and Donald Berry.

Berry’s funeral was held Aug. 13 at Heath Funeral Home in Paragould, Arkansas, and she was interred at Linwood Cemetery.

Memorial gifts to the SF State Foundation noting “Lilly M. Berry Endowed Scholarship” may be sent by mail to: Gift Processing, University Development, ADM #153, San Francisco State University, 1600 Holloway Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94132.

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