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Capital University News, California State University, Sacramento

January 25, 2005

President: Name, academics, budget on spring agenda

Sacramento State President Alexander Gonzalez said last week that the University would seek a formal name change from the CSU Board of Trustees in March.

The announcement was made during Gonzalez’ spring address to the campus community in the University Union Ballroom. The half-hour talk also touched on the campus’ budget situation, progress on the University’s Destination 2010 initiative, and facilities news.

Gonzalez said he would ask the Board of Trustees to change the name of the University to “Sacramento State University,” with the two acceptable nicknames being “Sacramento State” and “Sac State.” It is an endorsement of the recommendation made by the campus branding committee, which had looked at the results of surveys and focus groups of both the campus and the community.

The 18-member committee – with student, faculty, staff and community representation – is chaired by communication studies professor Barbara O’Connor. The group suggested a name scheme that fit with the general preference of thousands of survey respondents, had precedent among other CSU campuses and had historical roots – the campus was originally called “Sacramento State College.”

The change must be approved by the CSU Board of Trustees before it is official, and before it should be regularly used by campus units.

Along with the proposed name change, the President said, the campus will be developing a consistent brand with a look that is easily recognizable on and off campus. There will be a new campus mark, or logo, as well as guidelines for print and electronic communications so that all campus units are clearly part of the larger University.

“This is the sort of thing that large organizations must do,” Gonzalez said. “Many experts today talk about the ‘cluttered media environment’ – and an integrated, common look is one way to break through that clutter and make sure people get our message.”

Gonzalez also talked about the University’s evolving Destination 2010 initiative, which seeks to make Sacramento State a destination campus for the West and a flagship campus of the CSU system. Plans include new, apartment-style residence halls, a state-of-the-art arena and wellness center, energized student programs and a boost in scholarships.

Gonzalez said talks have begun about how to align the University’s academic program with Destination 2010, and that an overall campus action plan is nearly complete.

He also reiterated the initiative’s over-arching goals: 1) Foster excellent academic and student programs, 2) Build a welcoming campus, 3) Create a dynamic physical environment, and 4) Develop community support. “My continuing promise to all of you is that I will work tirelessly to make them happen, and my entire administration will work to create the type of campus that allows all of you to succeed,” he said.

As for the next budget year, Gonzalez said the news appears to be positive. The governor, he said, had recognized that “As an investment, the CSU is certainly a very good one for California,” and had proposed a budget in keeping with the Compact he made with the CSU last year.

The governor’s budget calls for a 4.4 percent budget increase, following three years of budget cuts. Included in that is 2.5 percent for enrollment growth and a 3.5 percent compensation increase for faculty and staff.

He noted that the budget proposal is now with the State Legislature, and negotiations over a final budget often extend into the new fiscal year, which begins in July.

On facilities, Gonzalez said the campus was moving forward on a number of fronts.

He said an architect should be chosen for the Recreation, Wellness and Events Center by March, and that construction should begin on the oft-delayed third parking structure near Hornet Stadium in either April or June.

The Academic Information Resource Center near the University Library should be done by March or April, he said. And a new Bookstore should be under construction near the University Union sometime in the fall semester. New signage, designed by faculty and students in the College of Arts and Letters, should be installed in the next couple years.

Other ideas, many of which came out of his discussions with the campus community, are in the formative stage, Gonzalez said. These include a faculty/staff daycare facility at the site of the former California Youth Authority site south of Highway 50, a hotel/conference center, expanded eateries, and additional student housing options.

Early in his talk, Gonzalez also acknowledged the recent passing of numerous people who had dedicated their careers to the University, including “Dean of Deans” William Sullivan, communication studies professor Leah Vande Berg, retired music professor Gene Savage, retired physics professor Homer Ibser, and retired social work professor Sol Spector.

Gonzalez also spoke of Congressman Robert Matsui, who recently passed away, calling him “a great friend of this University, as well as a great advocate for this region.” And he offered the University’s sympathy for those affected by the recent devastating tsunami.

He also thanked the University community in general for their work on behalf of students, adding “I want to remind you that we’re all engaged in a great educational enterprise – offering opportunity and helping prepare tomorrow’s leaders. We should all be very proud of what we do.”


California State University, Sacramento • Public Affairs
6000 J Street • Sacramento, CA 95819-6026 • (916) 278-6156 •
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California State University, Sacramento • Public Affairs
6000 J Street • Sacramento, CA 95819-6026 • (916) 278-6156 •