I’m excited to join the vibrant community of San Diego State University. This campus has thrived at many levels over the last 121 years, and our future holds even more promise. 

As SDSU’s ninth president, I’m looking forward to working with staff, students, faculty, and our community partners and keeping our community well informed about our vision and plans every step of the way, starting now.


The First 100 Days

During my first hundred days in office, I’ll develop a transition team of about 20 to 25 individuals, including faculty, staff, students, alumni, and community members. They will help me develop key listening groups to provide insights from various vantage points. I also plan to meet and work closely with our entire faculty, both directly and through our deans, department chairs, and the University Senate. I have already met with many of our Associated Student leaders and am looking forward to a close and fully collaborative working relationship with each of them. I will listen to and learn from the insights of our students, faculty and staff, and their insights will continue to guide and shape the shared vision for the next plan for San Diego State University. This will not be a static strategic plan, but a living document that grows and changes as we do.


Focus on Self Assessment of Our Strengths and Opportunities

As a newcomer to San Diego State University, I'm impressed by the academic reputation of the institution. Clearly, this reputation is a reflection of our challenging doctoral programs, rich research portfolio and innovative veteran and entrepreneurial programs.

Moving forward, student success will continue to be a foundational force for all we do at San Diego State, an effort that will lift everyone higher, including faculty, staff, and the San Diego community.

I’m excited that San Diego State University has a long tradition of community engagement. The university is a place of knowledge, experience and impact. SDSU is one of the oldest institutions in California, with 400,000+ living alumni, and many more in the community who have a stake in its success and the success of its students. As we engage with our community supporters in joint initiatives that advance the welfare of the broader San Diego region, we will work diligently to create a campus environment supportive of our faculty and staff.

I'm very excited also about the opportunities for working with and stewarding our generous donors. They have dedicated time and resources to help build momentum for this institution. You can read more about my vision and enthusiasm for maintaining that momentum in the Philanthropy section of this site.


Binational and Global Opportunities

As a binational economist with more than three decades in higher education leadership roles, I know that we must expand our global reach in order to become a thriving university of the 21st century. This effort will require reframing both our relevance to society and our method of communicating SDSU’s goals and achievements to the community and to the world. We will rethink our approaches to research, teaching, and learning, and collectively determine the impact we wish to have.

I am very excited to seize opportunities readily available in this region. We can work closely with Mexican institutions and with the San Diego Chamber of Commerce to create pathways for understanding and cooperation, not only within the San Diego region but also binationally and globally. The opportunities are endless, especially as we consider the Mission Valley campus expansion plan, outlined in the Mission Valley section. I encourage you to read more about these specific subjects in the following sections of this website: Mission Valley, Binational/Global Impact, and Community Impact. My hope is that you will become a well informed partner. We need you!


Working Together We Can’t Fail

As I look at the future of San Diego State University, I believe that we are poised to produce world-class scholars who will help solve the world’s greatest challenges with breakthrough research and entrepreneurial innovation.

As I’ve said many times before, my own career path and success would have never been possible without California’s public education system. As I join SDSU, I am committed to fostering a culture that thrives at every level. I know that we can't fail if we work together—we will produce impressive global citizens, compassionate leaders and ethical innovators who benefit the San Diego community and the world at large.

I hope you are looking forward to the journey as much as I am.