New campus housing features views of the American River

How’s this for a double feature: On the Waterfront and A Room with a View?

No, not the movies. The residence hall.

Work is underway on Sac State’s newest student housing—a 416-bed residence hall on the banks of the American River. The facility—the first new campus building since The Well recreation and wellness center opened in 2010—is expected to welcome its first tenants for the Fall 2017 semester.

It marks the first major facility in the new campus Master Plan, which includes a call to incorporate the American River into the campus environment. Expanded options for student housing have been the centerpiece of efforts to make Sac State a campus where students stay around before, between and after classes.

The four-story building, currently known as Student Housing Phase II, will feature separate wings for freshmen and sophomores, along with communal living areas which encourage residents to hold study groups, throw pizza parties or simply hang out. The hall will also have an interior courtyard, a rooftop terrace with river views, a multipurpose room with a shared kitchen, a computer lab, a fitness center and on-site bicycle parking with easy access to the American River bike trail.

As part of the University’s commitment to sustainability, it will be built to the U.S. Green Building Council’s specifications for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification. Landscaping will include drought-tolerant plants and reclaimed water for irrigation.

The project will be funded by housing fees paid by residents.

Campus welcomes new administrators

Cardoza Li Honeycutt

Lisa Cardoza

Frank Li

Alan Honeycutt

Cely Smart

In addition to the arrival of President Robert S. Nelsen, Sac State brought four new leaders on board over the summer:

Lisa Cardoza was appointed the new chief of staff in the Office of the President. She was previously associate vice president for Governmental Relations at the newly established University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, as well as chief of staff and governmental relations officer at the University of Texas-Pan American.

Frank Li was named assistant vice president for International Programs and Global Engagement. Before coming to Sac State, Li served as chief international officer and director of the Office of International Education at CSU Chico.

Alan Honeycutt is the new associate vice president for Human Resources. He was previously with National University, where he served as chief human resources officer.

Cely Smart is the new special assistant to the Office of the President. In her new role, she will serve as the communications lead for President Nelsen.

Music gets a new name

The semester is starting off on a high note for Sac State’s newly named School of Music.

“School of Music is a customary designation in the United States for comprehensive music programs like ours,” says Ernie Hills, chair of the School of Music, pointing to their degree offerings of a liberal arts degree (bachelor of arts), a professional degree (bachelor of music) and a graduate degree (master of music.) “The name change was granted by the campus in recognition of the hard work of our faculty.”

The new designation became official during the spring semester and will be reflected in new branding and the formation of a Friends of Music association for the School’s supporters.

“We are very pleased the University has recognized us,” Hills says. “We will continue to serve Sac State students and the community with strong academic programs and more than 200 public concerts each year.”

The school’s many acclaimed ensembles and groups include the Sacramento State Jazz Singers, perennial recipients of DownBeat magazine’s student music awards, and the world-traveling Sac State Choirs.

For a schedule of School of Music’s fall events, such as the world-renowned Festival of New American Music, visit

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