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May 21, 2002

President's year-end message

Photo: CSUS President Donald R. GerthWe have had many accomplishments over the year.

Shortly after the fall term began the nation was struck with the tragedy of Sept. 11th. That event affected us all. Our memorial services were well attended and throughout the year our faculty provided students and the community with a series of forums on the issues surrounding that event and our country's subsequent involvement in the struggle against terrorism. I am proud of the way that this campus community came together in these times. We have all become more aware of the historic and contemporary challenges faced by groups and cultures involved with us in this effort. We need to thank our students for their efforts in helping us to understand each other, and I want to specifically thank the faculty and staff for their concern, time and special efforts devoted to these issues.

Throughout the year a good deal of effort has been spent planning to accommodate our students. Enrollment growth will be with us for some time as the children of the baby boomers, and many of the boomers themselves, seek a university education.

This past fall we welcomed our largest freshman class, and had about 27,000 students overall on campus. Over the summer, year round operation will provide 5,000 students with classes to help them complete their education in a timely manner. We will continue to grow in the fall semester and in semesters to come. Internet-based education, alternative scheduling, and other innovations are allowing us to continue to serve the needs of the Capital Region. We are preparing as best we can to accommodate them, even as we face a state budget deficit.

We remain dedicated to educating students who seek an education from us. To that end, we are involved in 131 faculty searches that are now concluding. That means that the face of the faculty is beginning to change dramatically as many retire. However, they will always be a part of our University family and their contributions are very much appreciated. The new faculty will bring a new mix of expertise and vitality to our campus and curriculum, and we can all look forward to welcoming them.

To help accommodate the changing face of campus and our growth, we continue to add new facilities. Both our much needed new parking garage and the continuing education building should be ready for fall. The south campus continues to grow with the new facilities for Capital Public Radio and Modoc Hall soon to begin construction. The campus continues to change. I hear alums say they "hardly recognize the place."

To that end, for the first time in a decade, we are having our spring commencement ceremonies back on the campus where families can get a feel for the environment that shaped the university years for their alum.

So, thank you all for a very good year, your hard work and your thoughtful participation in the life of the University. Have a wonderful summer.

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