Chancellor's Recent Speeches

Auxiliary Organizations Association Annual Conference
Monterey, CA

Good evening, and thank you for inviting me to speak here tonight. I hope that all of you had an enjoyable, relaxing holiday. And I hope that you're as anxious as I am to get started on a new year - or a new millennium, if you want to call it that - with lots of exciting opportunities ahead.

When Steven Bloom invited me to speak at this meeting, I was struck by something he said in his letter. He told me that the "Odyssey" theme of this year's conference represented auxiliaries' "journey into the future." He said that this group wanted to hear me talk about where the system is going and how we can work together - because, as he put it, the auxiliaries' success "depends entirely on how well our journey is aligned with the CSU's."

I want to thank him for saying that, and I want him to know that the feeling is mutual. The better we work together, the more we can accomplish as a system.

Part I: Performance/Cooperation Over Past Year

I want to begin by sharing just a few highlights from the past year. All in all, 2000 was a great year for the California State University:

  • In the 2000/01 budget, the CSU received a $333.7 million general fund increase, our largest increase ever. Over the last three years, we have received budget increases totaling $834 million.

  • The CSU reached a four-year partnership agreement with Gov. Davis that will provide us with stable funding increases and additional investments in our priority areas.

  • Tidal Wave II brought our Fall 2000 enrollment to roughly 370,000 students. This represents our second-highest enrollment ever and our sixth straight year of enrollment increases.

  • State policymakers established a Cal Grant entitlement program, which will provide financial aid opportunities for thousands of hard-working, low-income students. It will reward both need and merit, and it will eventually grow to a $1.2 billion dollar program. This program represents a financial aid landmark and makes California a model for the nation.

  • The CSU continues to be one of the most diverse higher education institutions in the country, with minority enrollment at 53 percent. Eight CSU institutions are among the nation's top 20 universities in terms of baccalaureate degrees awarded to minorities.

  • The CSU continues to prepare more graduates in business, engineering, agriculture, communications, health, education, and public administration than all other public and private California colleges and universities combined.

  • The CSU continues to prepare nearly 60 percent of California's teachers.

  • Last summer the CSU teamed up with the University of California to provide professional development in reading, math, and technology for about 70,000 California teachers.

  • The CSU continues to support K-12 schools and students. Last year, we distributed 80,000 college-preparation posters to high schools and middle schools around the state. These posters help students and their parents understand what it takes to go to a college or a university.

  • Over the past year, CSU faculty have been recognized with grants and awards from such organizations as the National Science Foundation, the Fulbright Program, and the White House.

In short, we are doing some great things in this system. This is a system on the move. But we have to keep that momentum going. And all of you and your organizations are an important part of that momentum.

I want to take this opportunity to thank you for all of your hard work and cooperation over the past year.

Last January, I talked about some of the changes I would like to see in the auxiliaries and in your relationship with the CSU. I'm glad that so many of you took those words to heart. I'm also pleased that you found more ways to work closely with the CSU. For example:

  1. Investments: Last year, I spent some time talking about auxiliary investments - specifically, our new fixed income investment pools for state funds and the equity investment program. I also asked our auxiliaries to continue to be prudent with their investment strategies. I appreciate that so many of you have paid close attention to this issue.

  2. Collective Bargaining: Over the past year, we have had to deal with collective bargaining issues, notably the Wildman Bill (AB 1935). The Auxiliary Organizations Association's efforts in responding to AB 1935 and developing the guidelines that the university is using to respond to the survey demonstrates how we can be successful working together. This is an area where your cooperation is extremely helpful and much appreciated.

Part II: Issues on the Horizon

In the same spirit of communication and cooperation, I want to spend a few minutes talking about some of the issues that we foresee on the horizon:

  1. Continued growth for the CSU: As I mentioned earlier, the Tidal Wave II enrollment surge continues to be one of the biggest issues facing the CSU. We're expecting an increase of about 130,000 students over the next 10 years, which will bring our student population to roughly a half-million students. That's about 11,000 to 13,000 new students each year. We're going to need to make room for them by operating during more hours of the day, more days of the week, and more days of the year.

    Continued growth for the CSU means continued growth and expanded opportunities for auxiliaries. In particular, year-round operations should provide many new opportunities for service.

  2. Audits: Our Board of Trustees remains interested in accountability, and it will continue to look at audits of auxiliaries. As I discussed last year, the state auditor believes that the campus has a fiduciary role with regard to all activities carried out the in the name of the CSU. The public does not know the difference between the university and the auxiliary when they hear about university expenditures. They see them as one and the same - and I hold our presidents accountable for that. It is in the interest of our students and the CSU mission - as well as good business practice - to ensure that our performance measures up to our standards. So I thank you for your continued cooperation on this issue.

  3. Donor Names: I'm sure many of you have been following the situation at Fresno State, where a Superior Court judge has just ruled for the public release of the names of donors to the Save Mart Center. We will be appealing that decision.

    I want you to know that in Florida we had some of the most liberal open-record laws in the nation. But we were able to get an exemption for our donors. I believe if we could do that in Florida, we could do it anywhere. We have some models that we think can pass the test.

  4. Land Use: Our Board of Trustees and the Governor have raised the issue of how we use land for entrepreneurial projects. While these projects are important, we need to be aware that these questions are being asked.

    Are we using the lands entrusted to us by the state appropriately, to meet our most important needs?

    Is an Internet switching center the best use of state land?

    Do we need a separate classroom building to meet the needs of extended education students?

    Is a stand-alone official building for the campus foundation the best use of our limited land?

    Over the past few years, we have actively promoted public-private partnerships. Now we have to take stock and make sure we're entering into the right partnerships. We need to ensure that our partnerships add value to our academic enterprise.

    We will also be looking at our total debt capacity structure - not debt in isolation of the total.

  5. Call for Greater Accountability: An overall theme that we are seeing in Sacramento is a greater emphasis on accountability for our universities. In fact, when the CSU signed the partnership agreement with Gov. Davis, accountability measures were a key component. All of the issues I have mentioned, along with the Wildman bill, point to the fact that Sacramento is looking at our auxiliaries very carefully. This is a sign that we need to hold ourselves to the highest possible standards of accountability.

    I thank you for your efforts thus far and I urge you to remember that this is a top priority in Sacramento.

  6. Ten Percent: All CSU presidents are expected to generate at least 10 percent of their general fund budget in fund-raising. In order to build a "margin of excellence," we need to move beyond what is expected. I believe the difference between being good and being great lies in this kind of challenge. If we're going to excel, it won't be a matter of what we receive from the state. It will grow out of what we can do for ourselves.

Part III: Unity for the CSU

Finally, as I told this group last year, and as I have told many other CSU groups over the past year, we are a part of a massive, diverse institution that is spread out over many miles. The only way we can carry out our mission is if we have a sense of purpose and unity.

This means that we can't compare ourselves to other institutions like the UC. We have to stop these comparisons, stop wishing we were more like another institution. We are not the UC. We have our own unique mission and it is our job to carry out that mission, not anyone else's.

When some people hear me say that, they ask me why the CSU is pursuing an effort to offer an education doctorate degree.

My answer to that is, we're not trying to act like the UC and we're not trying to compete with the UC. We're trying to satisfy the statewide demand for an accessible, affordable route to an education doctorate.

We believe that we can use our vast experience in teacher preparation to help people - especially working teachers - who are unable to attend a UC campus full-time or cannot afford to attend a private university.

When I say we need to work with purpose and unity, it also means that we need to stop thinking of "us" versus "them" within the CSU. We need to work as a team. That means students, faculty, staff, administrators - and auxiliary organizations as well.

And finally, it means that we need to be positive about what we do and why we are doing it.

I believe that our auxiliary organizations help us build pride in the CSU better than just about any other group, and I encourage you to keep up that positive spirit.

I look forward to another good year of cooperation and collaboration with all of you and your organizations.

And I hope we can continue this successful "journey" together, because the CSU is one of the best universities in America.

Thank you very much. I will be happy to take any questions you have.

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