On the heels of my three-year anniversary as president of Chico State, I reflect on all we have accomplished together—and there is much to celebrate.
During my tenure, we have strengthened commitments to honesty, integrity, transparency, and free speech. We have renewed our dedication to shared governance and are working together to enhance the University. And, we have increased opportunities for students to share perspectives and challenges through a variety of events, including the Tipping Point Student Success Summit, the Conversation Couch, the Safety Summit, and many other interactions.
With student success at the heart of all we do, we have identified opportunities to renew our focus and underscored the role everyone on campus has in supporting it—from the professor in the classroom and those serving the Basic Needs Project to staffing in the Student Health Center and those leading the expansion of advising, tutoring, and anchoring of student success centers into the colleges and the residence halls. We established centers to support our diverse identities and create a sense of belonging and place, leading students to find their communities at the STAR Center, Dream Center, and Tribal Center.
The vice presidents and I have increased opportunities to be accessible and present at celebratory events such as move-in day and more difficult times like the weeks following the Camp Fire and other crises. With spirited encouragement from the vice president for University Advancement, we took our philanthropic culture of caring to new heights, and students regularly come out in huge numbers to give back and help others.
In the community, we have experienced improvements in our town-gown relationship, especially in rural communities, and with local tribes, area school districts, law enforcement, first responders, and public works. As a campus and community, we came together to rewrite our University’s strategic plan and campus master plan. Together, we understand that engaged partnerships focused on meaningful initiatives contribute to our collective health and well-being.
At Chico State, we hold ourselves to high standards of accountability and accuracy. As a public institution, we are accountable to our community and committed to answering any and all questions we can. Ethics and respect will always set the foundation for our interactions and responses. I will continue to be forthcoming and open about any challenge the University faces, from fluctuations in enrollment to housing impacts on hiring. I also embrace opportunities to share the remarkable work on this campus by our students, faculty, and staff.
We are defined by our values and our interactions. As we pursue our new vision to “be known as a preeminent university solving the unprecedented challenges of the 21st century,” I look forward to writing our continued story with you.