California State University, Fresno - University Journal
September 2014 Vol. 18 No. 1

In This Issue:
President's Column
Coming soon
Feature story


University Journal

President's Column


As I settle into my second year as president of Fresno State, I am confident we will accomplish new and impressive achievements as a campus.

As I affirmed in my State of Fresno State address at our Faculty and Staff Fall Assembly, we enjoyed a stellar year in 2013-14. Some highlights include:

  • We secured $31 million in funds from the CSU Chancellor's Office to upgrade Fresno State's aging electrical infrastructure. This major project, which replaces infrastructure installed in the 1950s, will be completed in 2016.
  • DISCOVERe tablet program, one of several new strategies to improve student success, was launched with over 1,200 students and 33 faculty.
  • My new Commission on the Future of Agriculture, which included campus and industry leaders, has been working hard. We’ve begun implementing several of its recommendations to further strengthen the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology.
  • We completed one of our most successful fundraising years -- $43 million in private support from individuals, businesses and foundations, 60% more than in 2012-13.
  • We hired a new provost, vice president for student affairs and vice president for university advancement. Dr. Lynnette Zelezny, Dr. Frank Lamas and Ms. Paula Castadio, respectively, have the skills, passion and commitment to help take Fresno State to new heights of success.

I know that faculty and staff salaries lagged during the Great Recession and there is pent-up demand for action. We plan to implement a salary equity program this year and I support multiyear CSU salary agreements with unions to address compensation issues.  I am pleased the CSU and the CSUEU have reached a tentative agreement on a multi-year successor contract.

Building upon our strong, successful, innovative and bold work in the last year, I see great days ahead for Fresno State. I invite you to join me in this effort. If you do, I believe that our future will be very bright.





Coming soon – a new employee newsletter for the campus community

A new faculty-staff newsletter will be developed this fall by University Communications using feedback from a campus survey and recommendations from a volunteer committee. The current monthly newsletter, University Journal, will be retired and a new publication with a fresh design and content will replace it. A name for the publication has not been determined, and suggestions are welcome. See more.


Feature Story

Ayotte and the Academic Senate: providing guidance and supervision
The Academic Senate has a new chair as of May 2014, when Kevin Ayotte was elected to the position by his fellow senators. He previously served for two years as the vice chair. "There is no payment for service as chair of the Academic Senate, but I do receive assigned time to release from teaching two courses each semester to run the Senate and represent it at many, many meetings," he said. See more.



OhlssonKeyboard Concerts presents pianist Garrick Ohlsson Sept. 7
Garrick Ohlsson perform works by Beethoven, Schubert, and Scriabin at 3 p.m., Sept. 7 in the Concert Hall. Garrick Ohlsson attained legendary status in 1970 when he became the first and only American to earn the Gold Medal in the International Chopin Competition in Warsaw. General admission is $25, seniors $18, and students $5. For reservations and other information, call 278.2337.


Health presentations available
The Health Promotion and Wellness Services Department at Fresno State's Student Health Center, in conjunction with on and off campus partners, offers a series of health promotion presentations through "Health P.A.W.S. Presents..." Whether you have a scheduled absence and need to locate a guest presenter or you simply want to bring a particular topic to the attention of your students, consider submitting a request for a 45-60 minute presentation. Click on the following link to learn more:


Barlow Der Mugrdechian and Sergio La Porta
(Armenian Studies) led a 17-day Armenian Summer Study Program, May 26-June 11, for nine students. The group visited historic Armenian churches, museums, art exhibits and met with students from Yerevan State University. They learned about Armenian art, architecture, music, and history while on the trip, enrolling in a three-unit course, Armenian Studies 120T-Armenia Today.


Collegian and yearbooks online
The Collegian and Fresno State yearbooks have been digitized and are now online on the library's website. This was a long-term project that archived publications dating back to 1911, when Fresno State published its first annual yearbook, The Prospect. Printed copies of the yearbooks are also available for check out from the main stacks of the Henry Madden Library.


Faculty bibliography online
The Fresno State Faculty Bibliography, a service provided by the Henry Madden Library, provides digital access to published research. The collection is the result of a relatively new initiative the library has taken on in conjunction with the Provost's Office. The University Archives continues to collect paper copies of professors' articles and books submitted to the library. This summer, library student assistants completed a project to print out the articles online to include in the faculty authors collection in the archives. Next the library will be asking professors for any works they may have that are not available online. Unpublished materials, such as white papers, artwork, and other materials created by members of the campus community can be deposited in the Campus Institutional Repository (currently under development).


Professor Emeritus Wymond Walter Eckhardt dies at 84
Wymond Walter Eckhardt Jr., professor emeritus, passed away June 23 at his home in Solvang at the age of 84 after a battle with cancer. Former director of the Instructional Media Center, he retired from Fresno State in 1990. Eckhardt began his career as an elementary school teacher and bus driver at Round Valley School in the Owen’s Valley in California and continued as an instructor at Los Angeles State University in the Biology Department. During the summers, Eckhardt served as a United States National Park Service Ranger.



Community Service Opportunities Fair Wednesday, Sept. 3
The Richter Center for Community Engagement and Service-Learning will present the 22nd Annual “Community Service Opportunities Fair” Wednesday, Sept. 3 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the grass area in front of the Kennel Bookstore. The event is designed to provide students, staff, and faculty with an opportunity to gain information on dozens of community benefit organizations and hundreds of community service-learning opportunities.

More than 70 agencies will be present to share information about volunteer opportunities in our community. Those attending the fair will be able to personally meet with agencies to learn more about the services they provide and the volunteer opportunities they have available.

For more information contact the Jan and Bud Richter Center for Community Engagement and Service-Learning at 278.7079 or


GarzaBlood and Marrow Registry Drive
to honor noted alumnus Justin Garza

Fresno State is teaming up with the Central California Blood Center and Be The Match to rally behind noted Fresno State Alum Justin Garza during a 3-day blood drive and marrow registry event. The entire Fresno State community including faculty, staff, students, administrators, and alumni are being called upon to make this a record-breaking event. The drive takes place Tuesday, Sept. 16 from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the University Dining Hall and continues on Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 17 and 18 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at three campus bloodmobile locations:  University Student Union, Kremen Education Building, and Maple Mall at the end of the rose garden.  See more.




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For the academic calendar, see the catalog. Find additional calendars through Academic Affairs.
A listing of season stage performances is available through Theatre Arts and music performances through the Music Department.



The University Journal is the Fresno State employee newsletter published online by the Office of University Communications the first day of each month – or the weekday closest to the first – from September through May. The deadline for submissions to the newsletter is 10 days prior to the first of each month. Please e-mail submissions to You may include digital photos, video clips or audio clips that are publishable online. Phone messages, PDFs, faxes, and printed hard copies will not be accepted.
President, Joseph I. Castro
Vice President for University Advancement, Paula Castadio
The University Journal is published by the Office of University Communications.
For more information,