Dear SDSU Family,
I would like to convey my hope for the health and safety of you and your family and
offer my heartfelt gratitude for your continued support of San Diego State University.
Surely, we are all living in extraordinary and disruptive times. Every day is a marathon
— not a sprint — as we work to ensure the best possible outcome for every student
and for our university.
As we look to summer and fall, I am determined to conquer the many challenges our
university faces and to emerge from this ordeal with an even stronger SDSU.
When it became apparent that the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) was going to
have lasting and devastating impacts around the world, including in our regional community,
SDSU immediately activated our emergency response team. This group began daily meetings,
which continue to today — morning, afternoon, and night. The goal is to create an
action plan by which we handle daily challenges while planning for the future.
With such a large and complex organization that, in many ways, mirrors a city, we
had to consider everything: the overall safety and well-being of our faculty, students
and staff, our students abroad, classes, research, clinical and community services,
housing, and so much more. We also began and continue to coordinate with county and
state partners and our California State University system. We had no idea the scope
or the timeframe in those early days, but we set into motion a plan that brings me
such pride and appreciation. We were able to quickly and effectively: move classes
and student support services into virtual spaces, including counseling and advising;
modify lab instruction; move events, trainings and research online; implement a plan
for all summer courses to be online; and launch a fundraising campaign for students
with the greatest financial needs — all within a matter of about two months.
Our management team and our decision-making have remained nimble, agile, and determined;
(not unlike our incredible Men’s Basketball team from not so very long ago!).
Further driven by the community of care that marks SDSU, our students, faculty, staff,
alumni, and supporters have also come together to support our students and one another
in creative and innovative ways. The examples are overwhelming:
||Instructional faculty have enjoyed weeks of immersive training, and more sessions
are being held to ensure that they are offering quality instruction and student support through virtual modalities.
||Hundreds of people on and off campus have contributed to our students who are experiencing
emergencies, and the fundraising campaign is ongoing as the outpouring of support continues.
||Our truly heroic alumni and faculty from our College of Health and Human Services
are at the front lines addressing COVID-19 and public health.
||To help ensure that students are linked to career opportunities in this fluid environment, SDSU Career Services is offering virtual workshops, advice, and also internship and career opportunities.
Many want to know when our students, faculty, and staff will be able to come together
again and in person. While we do not yet have an answer, we are doing everything possible
to return to some sense of normalcy.
I want to close by expressing my gratitude to you for your continued patience and
understanding. Your support and partnership are much needed and meaningful as we persist
in navigating this difficult time together. This pandemic shall pass, and when it
does, we will return to San Diego State University and to each other with an even
greater appreciation for what our wonderful community represents.