CSUSB’s First Day of Classes for the 2015-2016 School Year Kicks Off Its 50th Anniversary

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By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley) – Thursday, Sept. 24, not only is the first day of classes for the 2015-2016 academic year Cal State San Bernardino, but it also marks the 50th Anniversary of the university opening its doors to students.

The campus will feature 150 events throughout the school year to commemorate its birthday, which was launched earlier this week on Sept. 21, when CSUSB President Tomás D. Morales delivered the university’s annual Convocation address to students, faculty, staff and special guests.

“For more than 2,100 faculty and staff colleagues, as well as our alumni community, this will be a year full of special events, academic lectures and conferences, a Homecoming celebration, and the debut of campus treasures, such as the new Legacy Fountain unveiled last night (Sunday, Sept. 20),” Morales said.

“The theme for the 50th anniversary is ‘Celebrating Our Past and Transforming Our Future.’ As we begin a full day of activities, this is also a time to reflect on how far we’ve come, as well as look into the future,” Morales said. “It’s no secret that I am incredibly passionate about the success of our students. But let me be clear – student success does not happen without a stellar community of faculty and staff. I have worked at many campuses, and I would argue that we have among the best educators in the country. Each of you has every reason to be proud.”

When the university first opened its doors in 1965, 293 students were enrolled. On Thursday, the university will set a number of records, including the largest incoming freshman class – 3,004 –  in Cal State San Bernardino history, along with another record-breaking year for total enrollment – 19,498 – which is predicted to continue to climb to about 19,800 as more students enroll for fall classes.

New and returning students, along with faculty, staff and visitors entering campus, will see two of the university’s newest additions to welcome them, a new blue monument sign with the university’s name and a state-of-the-art message board featuring images and video about events on campus.

The university has also unveiled its Legacy of Leadership Fountain in the Physical Education Courtyard, which features life-size statues of Cal State San Bernardino’s first three presidents –John F. Pfau, Anthony Evans and Albert K. Karnig sitting around the fountain.

Each president faces toward a different part of the campus that has a profound accomplishment during each presidency. Pfau, the university’s founding president, faces toward the Pfau Library, one of the university’s signature buildings, which was constructed during his tenure; Evans faces Coussoulis Arena, which was built during his tenure as CSUSB’s second president; and Karnig faces toward the College of Education building, which was built during his tenure as the university’s third president.

Along with celebrating its past, CSUSB is also taking the lead in advanced technology to help its students. In July, CSUSB became the first university to offer wireless charging platforms on campus allowing students to charge their mobile phones so they can stay connected to the information and learning resources they need while on the go.

The new school year will also see the university’s commitment to increasing its number of tenure-track faculty. Since 2013, the university has hired 97 new tenure-track faculty.

“This is a university committed to a learning environment where our faculty and staff reflect the great diversity of our students and the regions we serve. I am proud to say that 47 percent of our new fall 2015 tenure-track faculty come from diverse backgrounds and cultures,” Morales said during Convocation. “While we still have significant room for growth, I am proud of our progress in this area as we aspire to increase the total number of faculty, staff and management from traditionally underrepresented communities.”

On Sept. 20, about 1,000 returning students and 500 new freshmen moved in to the university’s Serrano Village and Arrowhead Village on campus, as well as into University Village, an apartment-style complex across the street on Northpark Boulevard, kicking off the

Coyote Week of Welcome, featuring a host of activities to help students settle in before the first day of classes.

Set in the foothills of the beautiful San Bernardino Mountains, CSUSB is a preeminent center of intellectual and cultural activity in inland Southern California. Celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2015, CSUSB graduates about 4,000 students annually.

For more information about Cal State San Bernardino, contact the university’s Office of Strategic Communication at (909) 537-5007 and visit news.csusb.edu.

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