Placer satellite campus takes important steps toward becoming a reality
June 15, 2023
An unprecedented public-private partnership that will pave the way for a campus to serve students in one of California's fastest-growing regions continues to gain momentum.
Construction on the Sacramento State Placer Center, which will extend the University's reach into the growing region east of the capital, could begin within five years. The center is a joint endeavor among Sac State, Sierra College, Placer County, and Roseville-based developer Taylor Builders.
"This will be a place of innovation, a place that is transformative, where our students will be able to call home," Sacramento State President Robert S. Nelsen said.
The University is already putting those characteristics into practice, even well in advance of Placer Center becoming a full reality. The Carlsen Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship is partnering with Western Placer Waste Management Authority, which operates a landfill less than a mile from the site, to co-sponsor a pitch competition seeking new businesses and technologies that will turn trash into marketable goods.
Placer Center, along the Highway 65 corridor north of Roseville, will sit on 301 acres of land donated by the late Eli Broad, a businessman, philanthropist and former CSU trustee. The property is part of Taylor Builders' 2,213-acre Placer One master-planned community.
When it opens, the center will include an extension of Sierra College, one of the University's largest feeder schools.
At the October 2022 groundbreaking ceremony for Placer One infrastructure, Sierra College President Willy Duncan said 40% of his students transfer to Sac State, making it the No. 1 transfer institution for the Rocklin community college.
Between 3,000 and 5,000 current Sac State students commute from Placer County, Duncan said. The educational option Placer Center will provide is consequential.
"If you're a student that's struggling, you're on the margins, and have to work full time or have a family at home, it's so easy to say, 'I can't do that, yet. I don't have the money or the resources,' " Duncan said during the infrastructure groundbreaking.
"So, getting this right here in our community, to me, is what will make a huge difference to so many of our students."
During the initial phase, Placer Center will serve about 1,500 full-time students, ultimately growing to 12,000 within 15 years of opening. The master plan also calls for a conference center and performing arts center.