February 20, 2023

News & Announcements

Chris Larsen speaks to students

Alumnus Chris Larsen (B.S., ’84) made a special visit to campus Tuesday, Feb. 14, to take questions from Business students. Held at the J. Paul Leonard Library, the talk covered such topics as cryptocurrencies, climate change, staying motivated and the importance of taking risks ... and even failing.

“If you fail in America, particularly here in the Bay Area, it’s like a badge of honor. It makes you stronger for the next time. ... If you fail with honor and grace and treating people right, people remember that,” Larsen told students.

More than 60 Finance seniors from the Lam Family College of Business attended the event.

“Chris Larsen, as an SF State alumni, a successful executive and an angel investor focusing on sustainability and cryptocurrency, was able to share with students firsthand his outlook for the crypto ecosystem, his perspectives on sustainability issues, his entrepreneurial spirit and his advice for a successful career path — all of which are hard to get elsewhere,” said Assistant Professor of Finance Xue Snow Han, who helped organize the visit.

When asked for his advice on launching a new business venture, Larsen told students the first thing to look for is an opportunity to make a difference.

“When you start a business, look for a problem that you can solve,” Larsen said. “The basic idea of any business is product, market, fit, right? If you’re not solving a problem, then what’s the point?”

Larsen co-founded online mortgage lender E-Loan in 1996, and later helped launch Ripple Labs and other cutting-edge technology and finance ventures. He and his wife Lyna Lam, whose two sisters and several other family members attended SF State, have been stalwart supporters of the University since 2001. In April 2019, SF State announced the donation of a historic $25 million gift from Larsen, Lam and the Rippleworks Foundation to the College of Business, establishing the Chris Larsen and Lyna Lam Funds for the College of Business. In honor of this longtime support, the California State University announced that SF State’s College of Business had been renamed the Lam Family College of Business.

Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf praying in front of a flag

Two decades before Colin Kaepernick kneeled during the National Anthem to protest police violence, another professional athlete faced severe consequences for refusing to salute the flag. Now, an SF State alumna has brought former National Basketball Association (NBA) player Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf’s unique story — and the tantalizing style he played the game — to an international audience. 

Longtime journalist Sarah Allen (B.A., ’99) is an executive producer for “STAND,” the biographical documentary about Abdul-Rauf featuring extensive interviews with him and other basketball luminaries. It premiered on Showtime on Feb. 3.  

“I fell into it because I really was intrigued by that whole conversation around athletes and activism,” Allen said. “I’m not as interested in giving somebody’s stats on the field. That’s boring to me. Athletes have stories that go beyond that.” 

Abdul-Rauf’s career was cut short after he decided to sit on the bench during pregame performances of “The Star-Spangled Banner” due to the continued oppression of Black people in America. He was suspended and then exiled from the league, and later his home was burned down in an act of white supremacy. Now age 54, he has enjoyed a career resurgence, dominating players much younger than him in the half-court BIG3 basketball league with the same skills he has always had. 

Allen met Abdul-Rauf at the 2017 National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) conference, where he won an award. At the time, he was long out of the national spotlight and his story had been largely forgotten. Allen approached him and convinced him to do an interview, his first one-on-one with anyone in years. Their rapport has since evolved into Allen writing numerous stories on Abdul-Rauf and then negotiating his licensing agreement with Showtime and the contract for his 2022 memoir through Kaepernick Publishing.  

Read more about Abdul-Rauf, “STAND” and Allen at SF State News.

Harry Chuck

The Marcus Endowed Chair of Social Justice Film in the School of Cinema will host a showing of the film “Chinatown Rising,” co-directed by alumnus Harry Chuck (pictured), on Tuesday, Feb. 21, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Coppola Theater. Against the backdrop of the civil rights movement of the mid-1960s, Chuck, then a young San Francisco Chinatown resident armed with a 16mm camera and leftover film scraps from a local TV station, turned his lens onto his community. Totaling more than 20,000 feet of film (10 hours), Chuck’s exquisite unreleased footage captured a divided community’s struggles for self-determination.

Harry Chuck earned his M.A. from SF State’s Film Arts Department, where he served as a student assistant in film history. “Chinatown Rising” uses his footage from the ’60s to help tell the story of the Asian American movement from the perspective of the young residents on the front lines of their historic neighborhood in transition. Through publicly challenging the conservative views of their elders, their demonstrations and protests of the 1960s-1980s rattled the once-quiet streets during the community’s shift in power. Forty-five years later, in intimate interviews, these activists recall their roles and experiences in response to the need for social change. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with co-directors/producers Josh Chuck and Harry Chuck.

This event is sponsored by Asian American Studies, AAPI Student Services and ASPIRE. Learn more about the screening on the College of Ethnic Studies website.

In honor of Women’s History Month in March, campus volunteers have organized an event titled S.H.E. L.E.A.D.S. (Sisterhood in Higher Ed — Leadership.Empathy. Allies.Diversity.Self). This two-session event is free for employees and student org leaders. A moderated panel will feature President Lynn Mahoney and VP of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management Jamillah Moore, College of Science & Engineering Dean Carmen Domingo, AVP of Human Resources Ingrid Williams and Professor and SF Build Lead PI Leticia Márquez-Magaña sharing their rise to leadership and ways to support development and mentorship opportunities at SF State. Learn more on the Human Resources website or RSVP via Qualtrics.

The Five-Year Administrative Review is underway for Vice Provost and Dean Lori Beth Way, Division of Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning. The Administrative Review Committee (ARC) solicits input from members of the campus community. An electronic questionnaire will be available via email on Wednesday, March 1. Those who would like to participate in the review process, please send an email to Mona Sagapolutele at academic@sfsu.edu. The deadline to submit online questionnaires to the Administrative Review Committee is Friday, March 31.

In keeping with the procedures for academic administrative review approved by the Academic Senate, the committee will not accept any anonymous responses. The ARC will preserve the confidentiality of those who submit evaluations, within the limits of the law, and individual responses will not be shown to the administrator under review. 

The Administrative Review Committee chair is Teddy Albiniak.

The Five-Year Administrative Review is underway for Dean Cynthia Grutzik, Graduate College of Education. The Administrative Review Committee (ARC) solicits input from members of the campus community. An electronic questionnaire will be available via email on Wednesday, March 1.  Those who would like to participate in the review process, please send an email to Mona Sagapolutele at academic@sfsu.edu. The deadline to submit online questionnaires to the Administrative Review Committee is Friday, March 31.

In keeping with the procedures for academic administrative review approved by the Academic Senate, the committee will not accept any anonymous responses. The ARC will preserve the confidentiality of those who submit evaluations, within the limits of the law, and individual responses will not be shown to the administrator under review. 

The Administrative Review Committee chair is Linda Epstein.

Career & Leadership Development (formerly Career Services & Leadership Development) joined the Division of Graduate Studies on July 1, 2021, to form the Division of Graduate Studies & Career Development. The relocation of Career & Leadership Development (CLD) to Academic Affairs facilitates a developmental approach to career support and holistic integrated career advising through strong collaboration with faculty advisors and a network of employers. The division serves undergraduate and graduate students, alumni and prospective students and welcomes all to stop by to visit the newly remodeled space called The HUB. The renovation of the Administration Building’s second floor is part of a larger project to give CLD more visibility among students and better proximity to the Undergraduate Advising Center.

The HUB, Division of Graduate Studies & Career Development is located in ADM 250 (next door to Human Resources). Office hours are Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

For more information about Career & Leadership Development, call (415) 338-1764 or email career@sfsu.edu (formerly csld@sfsu.edu). Contact the Division of Graduate Studies at (415) 338-2234 or gradstudies@sfsu.edu.

As a member of the SF State community, the Staff Council wants your voice to be heard.  Consider nominating yourself or a colleague for a position on the Staff Council. The nomination period for the spring 2023 election runs from Feb. 20 to March 19. The voting period will be March 27 through April 14. Current vacancies:

  • Unit 1
  • Unit 2
  • Unit 4
  • Unit 5
  • Unit 6
  • Unit 8
  • Unit 9 – TECH Service

Submit a nomination via Qualtrics.

For more information about the Staff Council, please read the Staff Council Constitution and Bylaws. Any questions can be directed to the Staff Council (askstaffcouncil@sfsu.edu).

Thank you for your contribution to the shared governance of San Francisco State University!

Are you an SF State faculty or staff member interested in trying out the Mashouf Wellness Center? Come help celebrate National Rec Day and take advantage of Faculty and Staff Free Week from Feb. 19 to Feb. 25.

The free memberships are only available to eligible faculty and staff. Register on the Campus Recreation website.

  • Find the Campus Rec Member Portal
  • Click “Memberships”
  • Login through SSO by clicking “SF State” login
  • Click “Faculty and Staff”
  • Add the free membership to your cart and check out
  • Sign the liability waiver
  • Type in your ID # at the Front Desk and enjoy your free membership!

Any membership questions or concerns can be directed to the Campus Rec Memberships Team at mwcmembers@sfsu.edu.

The Ctrl+P Digital Print Shop is thrilled to announce it is now providing official business card printing services! To place an order for your new business cards, please contact Ctrl+P directly.

Email copyctr@sfsu.edu or phone (415) 338-2434.

Ctrl+P’s friendly staff will be happy to assist you with the process and looks forward to serving you.

The deadline to nominate a faculty member for a 2023 Center for Equity and Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CEETL) Teaching Award is March 6.

CEETL Excellence in Teaching First-Year Students Awards
Nominate a lecturer or T/TT faculty member who has shown extraordinary teaching among first-year students. This award recognizes faculty who have made a difference in the lives of first-year SF State students by inspiring student learning and supporting student development and success. Nominations for faculty whose pedagogy reaches non-traditional students are particularly welcome. Nominate someone via Qualtrics.

CEETL Exemplary Teaching Awards
Nominate a lecturer or T/TT faculty member who has made a difference in the lives of SF State undergraduate or graduate students through high-impact teaching practices such as using engaging pedagogy, mentoring, collaborating with students on research, guiding peer-to-peer learning, creating pathways for students, connecting students to resources and opportunities and providing exemplary support for students. Nominations for faculty whose pedagogy reaches non-traditional students are particularly welcome. Nominate someone via Qualtrics.

Faculty and chairs may nominate any faculty member who meets these criteria. Nominees will receive notification that they have been nominated and will be asked to provide a 500-word narrative describing their impact on student success and an artifact that supports this, such as an assignment, syllabus or other representative sample of their teaching. The awardees will be honored on May 3, 4 – 5 p.m. in LIB 121.

The deadline to apply for a travel grant is Wednesday, March 1. The SF State Retirement Association awards grants to faculty and staff for career-related travel. When funds are available, travel grants are awarded annually, alternating yearly between faculty (even-numbered years) and staff (odd-numbered years). Note: This year, five grants of $1,000 will be awarded to staff members, and another five to faculty members. To apply, please use this form/format:

  • STAFF:

Brevity is strongly encouraged. Please employ double-spaced type of no less than 12 points. If necessary, attach no more than one page of double-spaced type of no less than 12 points. Send to: retire@sfsu.edu.

The Academic Senate met on Tuesday, Feb. 14, at the Seven Hills Conference Center and via Zoom. The senate:

  • Adopted by general consent Resolution in Honor and Memory of Professor Margaret Leahy.
  • Passed changes in bylaws to rename Curriculum Review and Approval Committee to Campus Curriculum Committee and to increase membership in the Student Affairs Committee to include Dean of Division of Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning or designee (ex officio).
  • Passed Revision to Online Education Policy.
  • Heard the following items in first reading:
    • Certificate in Paralegal Studies (Distance Education Authorization)
    • B.A. in Anthropology (Distance Education Authorization)
    • B.A. in Liberal Studies (Distance Education Authorization)

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

The Creative Writing Department at SF State is pleased to host California Poet Laureate Lee Herrick for a reading and Q&A on Tuesday, Feb. 21, from 4 to 5 p.m. in LIB 121 and online via Zoom. This event is free. RSVP via Zoom

Herrick is the author of three books of poems — “Scar and Flower,” “Gardening Secrets of the Dead” and “This Many Miles from Desire” — and the co-editor of “The World I Leave You: Asian American Poets on Faith and Spirit.” His writing appears in anthologies such as “HERE: Poems for the Planet,” with an introduction by the Dalai Lama; “Indivisible: Poems of Social Justice,” with an introduction by Common; “The Place That Inhabits Us: Poems from the San Francisco Bay Watershed”; “Naming the Lost: The Fresno Poets: Interviews and Essays”; and “Dear America: Letters of Hope, Habitat, Defiance, and Democracy.” He served as Fresno poet laureate from 2015 to 2017. Born in Daejeon, Korea, and adopted to the United States as an infant, he teaches at Fresno City College and the MFA program at the University of Nevada, Reno at Lake Tahoe.

This event is co-hosted by Transfer Magazine and 14 Hills. For more information write cwriting@sfsu.edu.

The Raza Faculty and Staff Association at SF State is holding the next Cafecito con Colegas (Coffee with Colleagues) 8:30 – 10 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 28, at the University Club located on the Mezzanine Level of the César Chávez Student Center. Join them for your morning coffee while building community with Latino/e/x faculty, staff and allies. Not a member of the RFSA? Become a member at the Cafecito con Colegas.

The RFSA will hold its annual membership meeting and board elections noon to 1 p.m. Tuesday, March 7, at the César Chávez Student Center in the Rosa Parks D room. Please register for the annual membership meeting (lunch will be provided) at rfsa.sfsu.edu. Interested in serving on the RFSA Board? Send an email to rfsa@sfsu.edu to add yourself to the ballot for one of the following positions: faculty co-chair, staff co-chair, treasurer, recorder, membership director, events directors or archivist.

Campus Recreation will be celebrating National Rec Day on Friday, Feb. 24, with activities such as bubble soccer, wheelchair basketball, three-on-three basketball tournaments, rock climbing and more! Save the date and join the fun from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Mashouf Wellness Center.

National Rec Day celebrates the founding of NIRSA (originally the National Intramural Association) on Feb. 22, 1950, when Dr. William Wasson brought together intramural directors from historically Black universities to share his research on collegiate recreation.

Questions about Campus Rec’s Rec Day events? Contact spevents@mail.sfsu.edu for assistance.

The campus community is invited to the Labor Archives and Research Center’s 37th Anniversary Annual Program Friday, Feb. 24. The program will feature Robert W. Cherny, SF State professor emeritus of History, discussing his new biography “Harry Bridges: Labor Radical, Labor Legend” (University of Illinois Press, 2023). There will also be a musical performance by Marie Shell, granddaughter of Harry Bridges, who will perform “The Ballad of Harry Bridges.” 

The event will be held at ILWU Local 34, 4 Berry St. in San Francisco. Doors open at 6 p.m., with the program set to run from 7 to 8 p.m.

All attendees are asked to wear masks, and for the comfort and safety of the audience food and drinks will not be served this yearProof of vaccination or a negative COVID test is required. 

Robert Cherny helped found the Labor Archives and Research Center and has served on the Advisory Board from its inception. He received his Ph.D. in History from Columbia University, joined the History faculty at SF State in 1971 and became emeritus in 2012. He served at various times as chair of the History department, director of the labor studies program, chair of the Academic Senate, chair of the CSU Academic Senate, acting dean for behavioral and social sciences and interim dean of undergraduate studies. He is the author or co-author of 40-some published essays and seven monographs, co-editor of two anthologies and co-author of college textbooks on U.S. and California history. He began working on a biography of Harry Bridges in 1985 at the invitation of Harry and Nikki Bridges and spent the next 15 years doing archival research at more than 25 archives, but University and other responsibilities delayed him from completing the book until after he retired.

For more information, contact larc@sfsu.edu or (415) 405-5571.

A dog looks at a hand holding jewelry while another hand holds a picture of a family

Join the Museum Studies Program and the Global Museum for their Spring exhibits Opening Reception on Saturday, Feb. 25, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. in the Global Museum, FA 203. 

Thereafter the exhibits will be on view in the Global Museum on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. through May 4.

Textures of Remembrance: Vietnamese Artists and Writers Reflect on the Vietnamese Diaspora explores stories of personal struggles and memories demonstrating the effects of the Vietnam war on identity, sense of family and community, and representation, featuring works by emerging writers and artists.  

Other Worlds: The Art of Storytelling is a student-developed exhibit which explores global storytelling traditions — acting, dance, puppetry, game design, costuming, film and literature — through material culture, immersing visitors in an adventure following the Hero's Journey.

Though this event is free and open to the public, an RSVP via Eventbrite is appreciated. 

Follow the Global Museum and Museum Studies program on Instagram and Facebook for updates: @GlobalMuseumSFSU and @SFSUMuseumStudies. 

The Department of Women and Gender Studies Lecture Series will present Manijeh Moradian, author of “This Flame Within: Iranian Revolutionaries in the United States,” in conversation with SF State Professor of Women and Gender Studies Kasturi Ray from 12:30 to 1:45 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 28. Moradian is an assistant professor of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Barnard College. This Lecture Series event is for SF State community members only. Register to take part via Zoom.

This event is co-sponsored with the Center for Iranian Diaspora Studies.

SF State Transforms and Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) invites all faculty to “Build Solidarity and Community as Scholars” by joining them at their Spring Faculty Social Lunch on Thursday, March 2, from noon to 1 p.m. in the Teaching and Learning Commons, LIB 286. Come learn about the PERC Portal, Faculty Scholarship Hubs and other Transforms activities to advance women of color faculty in STEM. RSVP via Qualtrics by Friday, Feb. 24, to assist with the planning for food and drinks.

For additional information, contact Ilse Gonzalez at transforms@sfsu.edu.

The Office of Emergency Services is happy to announce that Neighborhood Emergency Response Team (NERT) is coming back to SF State on April 4 and April 5. For information about this program visit the San Francisco Fire Department website. This training will be two full days, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., and you must be present in person both days in order to get NERT certified. If your certification expired March 2020 or after and you need to be recertified then you will only need to join on April 5 tentatively 11 a.m. – 4.30 p.m. This training will be held in the Annex 1 event space. Please reach out to oes@sfsu.edu for any other questions you may have.

More information (and confirmation of training times) will be made available as details are finalized closer to the date. Signing up holds your place for the training and for future update emails.

SF State Spotlight

Africana Studies Professor Dorothy Tsuruta is an active committee member with the Modern Language Association (MLA). She placed Africana Studies in prominent position during the MLA’s convention held in San Francisco this year. She proposed and participated on the panel “Honoring an American Innovation in Education: Historical Black Studies in Colleges and Universities” on Jan. 6. Tsuruta also presided at the panel “Beyond Silos: The Future of Ethnic Literatures” on Jan. 6. 

The Bay Area chapter of the Scholars Strategy Network (SSN) is hosting a workshop for scholars who want to learn how to write and pitch compelling research-based op-eds. Participants will learn how to craft a good lede, identify and incorporate timely news hooks, signal the author’s unique and relevant expertise, increase the likelihood of publication and structure an op-ed for maximum impact.

The workshop will be co-moderated by Assistant Professor of Anthropology Martha Lincoln and Associate Professor of Criminal Justice Studies Carina Gallo. Ed Clendaniel, opinion editor of The Mercury News, will be on hand to share his experience in selecting pitches and editing opinion essays for publication. There will also be time for Q&A.

The 90-minute session will take place via Zoom on Friday, March 10, from 1:30 to 3 p.m. All Bay Area scholars interested in public-facing work are welcome; membership in the Scholars Strategy Network is not required. Register online. DoorDash gift cards will be provided to the first 20 participants who register for this event.

In the aftermath of the January mass shootings in Monterey Park, The New York Times called upon Dance Professor Yutian Wong for her pioneering expertise in Asian American dance studies. 

In the story, published Feb. 15, Wong discusses the longtime popularity of ballroom dancing among Asian Americans, as the shooting took place at a studio that had been established in 1995. Wong’s parents, who emigrated from Malaysia to Southern California in the 1960s, were avid ballroom dancers at both studios targeted by the gunman. 

Wong said that the Western form of dance arrived in Asia “during colonial rule and was glamorized in Hollywood movies and by those who returned from trips to Europe.” It offers low-impact exercise and companionship.  

Associate Professor of Anthropology Dawn-Elissa Fischer presents “Women, Resistance and Hip-Hop" on Feb. 22 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the City College of San Francisco (CCSF) Multi-Use Building, room 357, and via Zoom. For more information and the Zoom link, visit the CCSF African American History Month events calendar.  

Fischer is an affiliate faculty member in the Educational Leadership Doctoral Program and former interim chair of the Africana Studies Department. She serves as an associate director with the Hiphop Archive and Research Institute, humanities adviser to KQED’s “That’s My Word: A Year-Long Exploration of Bay Area Hip-Hop History” and a life member of the Association for the Study of African Life and History (ASALH). Learn more about ASALH’s 2023 Black History theme of “Black Resistance.” 

American Indian Studies Chair and Associate Professor John-Carlos Perea will perform at Bird and Beckett Books and Records in San Francisco on March 3 at 7:30pm. The quartet features Jimmy Biala on drums, Race and Resistance Studies Lecturer Karl Evangelista on guitar, Masaru Koga on saxophone and Perea (B.A., ’00) on bass, cedar flute and voice. 

Associate Professor of Humanities and Liberal Studies David M. Peña-Guzmán won a PROSE Award in Philosophy from the Association of American Publishers (AAP) for his book “When Animals Dream: The Hidden World of Animal Consciousness” (Princeton University Press, 2022). 

The book is among 40 winners and 105 finalists announced on Feb. 8. AAP represents the leading book, journal and education publishers in the U.S. on matters of law and policy, advocating for outcomes that incentivize the publication of creative expression, professional content and learning solutions. 

Theatre Professor Dianthe Spencer is the subject of a Feb. 9 profile in the San Francisco Bay Times honoring her longtime presence in the Bay Area’s jazz scene and LGBTQ community. The story positions Spencer as a pioneer. 

“Spencer is a Queen in her own right, especially in the Bay Area’s LGBTQ community,” the article stated. “She is a member of the San Francisco Lesbian/Gay Freedom Band, which she has also guest conducted, and she has performed at countless fundraisers benefiting the queer community over the decades. Often she can be found — either solo or as an accompanist — working her magic behind the keyboard, a skill that can make or break an event.” 

Spencer and Renée Lubin performed at “Divas and Drinks: Celebrating Black History Month” on Feb. 9 at The Academy SF. 

A controversy has emerged after a photograph created using artificial intelligence duped the judges and won a contest. Sachi Cunningham, associate professor of Journalism, discussed the ethical issues in in the San Francisco Standard on Feb. 9. 

“I think the more tools we have at our disposal, the better,” Cunningham said. “It’s how we use them that is worth examining, and towards what end that’s worth questioning. Your images could be used for a purpose that you didn’t intend — and this could be a photo that you took to illustrate some important truth that could be manipulated to tell an untruth.” 

Training for a marathon? In a Feb. 8 story in Runners World/Yahoo!, Kinesiology Professor Matthew Lee gives advice on increasing your speed. 

“To see progress, you need to keep subjecting your body to a stimulus it isn’t used to, in this case, faster speeds,” said Lee, an exercise physiologist. “You gradually overload the body with speed, let it adapt, then overload it a little more, let it adapt and so on.” 

A Jan. 31 story on Body Wisdom features Recreation, Parks and Tourism Professor Erik Peper offering his expert advice on practicing mindfulness in body posture. During screen time, he urges you to focus on how you feel.

“Are you tightening your shoulders? Are you tightening your trunk? Are you raising your shoulders possibly holding all this tension?” Peper asked. “If you are like most people who do this task, you did all of that and you were totally unaware. We are usually really unaware of our body posture.”