Update from the President April 3, 2019

April 3, 2019

Dear Campus Community Members,

Happy April! Spring is the season of new beginnings, transformation and growth. Despite this week’s rain, we know that spring is out there. We’ve seen it in the blossoms that have been plentiful on campus in recent weeks and the wildflowers and greenery that are blanketing the surrounding hills. I hope you have had a chance to get out and revel in the beauty of our region. It’s certainly something to enjoy. Here are some other reasons to celebrate.

The Seawolf Commitment to Sustainability

As I shared in my March message, Sonoma State will host the 14th Annual Sustainable Enterprise Conference on Friday, April 5. More than 300 local leaders from throughout the North Bay are scheduled to attend, and I will sign the landmark Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitment on behalf of our university. Please join us at the signing ceremony at 8:30 a.m. Because rain is expected, the signing has been moved indoors to the ballrooms on the third floor of the Student Center. 

I also encourage you to attend one of our Center for Environmental Inquiry’s “Dig into Nature” natural history hikes, which are scheduled to take place through June. These offer the opportunity to learn more about our university’s 4,200 acres of beautiful wildland preserves. The work that our center undertakes forms the core of our Seawolf commitment to the values and practices of sustainability. To learn more, please visit the Center for Environmental Inquiry website.

Seawolf Advocacy in Sacramento and Washington, D.C.

Sonoma State hit the road last month with stops in Sacramento and Washington, D.C. On March 7, two SSU student leaders, two staff and the Statewide CSU Academic Senate president and I joined with the CSU delegation to meet with legislative leaders in Sacramento as part of CSU Advocacy Day. We shared the remarkable contributions that our university makes to the state, our progress on the Graduation Initiative, encouraged adoption of the governor’s proposed CSU budget and discussed maintenance/facilities needs on campus.

On March 12, at the invitation of Congressman Mike Thompson, who represents our campus and region, I traveled to Washington, D.C., to testify on behalf of victims of natural disasters before a House Ways and Means committee hearing on tax policies. I recounted the experiences I and many other members of our community shared during the 2017 North Bay fires and spoke about the importance of tax relief for disaster victims

And just last week, I returned to Washington, D.C. for Hill Day, along with AS President Carley Chatterley and Statewide CSU Academic Senate President Catherine Nelson. Our day included meetings with Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Rep. Mike Thompson and others, and a Women’s History Month reception at the Capitol with Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The reception was held in honor of NASA women mathematicians whose contributions to the U.S. space program were featured in the movie “Hidden Figures.” Family members of these women were in attendance during this moving tribute inside Statuary Hall in front of a statue of Rosa Parks. I also had the opportunity to meet some of our very own Sonoma State alumni at CSU receptions in D.C. and New York City. Our graduates are doing amazing things and attribute much of their success to the education that they received at Sonoma State.

Seawolf Student Milestones

Congratulations to CSU Student Trustee – and Sonoma State Senior – Emily Hinton for her recognition as a “Woman of the Year” by the California Legislature last month. Emily was nominated by Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis and was recognized in a ceremony on the floor of the Senate and Assembly. Congrats, Emily!

The Green Music Center: Big Announcements

On April 9, the Green Music Center will announce its Summer 2019 Season. The Summer Season will feature a wide range of amazing performers – including more than 13 events at Weill Hall + Lawn from July through September – indoor and outdoor seating and a variety of dining options. Tickets go on sale to the general public on April 18.

And on May 7, the GMC will announce its 2019-20 season. Exceptional performances from internationally renowned dancers, classical musicians, jazz and world music artists will take place from late September through April in Weill and Schroeder Halls. Many of these performers also will interact with students and our North Bay community members through residency activities. Subscriptions go on sale to the general public on May 21. 

Remember that students receive 50 percent off the regular single ticket price (and $10 lawn tickets during the Summer Season) with the promo code SSUSTUDENT and Sonoma State faculty and staff members receive 25 percent off the regular single ticket price with promo code SSUFACSTAFF. Discounts are limited to two tickets per performance. Please visit The Green Music Center’s website for more information. 

Important Dates Ahead

  • April 13, 2019 – Seawolf Decision Day

Prospective Sonoma State students and their families will visit our campus on Saturday, April 13. Thank you to all who will help us welcome and assist our newest students.

  • May 18-19, 2019 – Sonoma State Commencement ceremonies

I’m so proud of all that you have achieved and all that we have accomplished together so far this semester. Happy Springtime!

With gratitude, 

Judy K. Sakaki signature

Judy K. Sakaki