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POSTED ON 09/19/18

CONCERN:: I am an alumnus to the Industrial Technology Department at Fresno State. I graduated in the early 2000s with both a BS and MS from that department and I am proud of my degree. I now have nephews who go to Fresno State and I suggested the IT department. However, it is disgraceful to hear that they believe it is a waste of time as most classes are online. Educational research has shown that online classes are not effective especially in a program like IT where students need to learn by doing. Additionally, I am appalled that the faculty insists on playing videos on a regular basis. Whatever happened to Fresno State’s model of "Learn by Doing"? I even recently went back through the halls of the department and it seems all they promote is online classes and the department seems to be really outdated. As an alumnus and supporter of Fresno State, I find this disturbing. I think this will cause a decrease in student attendance as most of them will find that the community college has better facilities and faculty.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your email. The department offers in-person, online and hybrid classes (lab face-to-face and lecture online). As you correctly point out, hands-on experience is very important for our students, and technical classes with a lab component are offered in-person only. Some courses without a lab, which have multiple sections in a single semester, will have both face-to-face online sections. For single-section courses, if the course is offered online one semester, it will be offered face-to-face the following semester. Online courses are offered because a significant number of our students are not able to take courses during normal hours, even with the number of classes we offer after 5 p.m. 

Relative to facilities, the program has been updating its equipment over the last few years. An example is a $600,000 state-of-art citrus packing line, gifted to the University by seven local companies, led by Bee Sweet Citrus. Another example is a set of Autonomous Ground Vehicles (AGV), drones, quad-copters and related support equipment obtained by one of our faculty members through a $500,000 grant. The department, in conjunction with the Lyles College of Engineering, accepted a $325,000 gift to create an Automation Academy. In all cases, the equipment is used in laboratory activities to benefit students.

The department also uses up-to-date specialized software such as Solid Works, Autocad, and Automation Studio in its labs and classes.

The department extends an invitation to you and your nephews to visit, see the labs, and further discuss your concerns. Please call 559-278-2145, 559-278-5231, or email the chair at aalexandrou@mail.fresnostate.edu to arrange an appointment. 


CONCERN:I've read a lot of material regarding Fresno State's mission of inclusion, diversity and equality, however, I feel that more needs to be done to balance the scales of equality especially when it comes to those conservative opinions. There's been a lot of talk about free speech and it's a great benefit, however, it comes with consequences. Enough has been said about that topic, therefore, I will move on with a suggestion for the President: start promoting the good work being done on campus by staff and faculty. The on-campus Ethics Center has compiled a pamphlet titled "The Civility Project" that lists 26 Virtues of Civility; I would encourage the President to start sending out this pamphlet to the campus community, students, faculty and staff. I end with one of the virtues listed in the pamphlet "Dignity: behave with self-respect; avoid belittling oneself and others".

RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion. The Ethics Center engages in important and timely work on our campus and in the community. Interim Provost Harper met recently with Professor Fiala to discuss additional ways for the campus to support the Ethics Center and to share its vital resources with the campus and community.


CONCERN: In the years past Fresno State would send computers to the warehouse when they have purchased new computers to refresh the labs. We knew that we could go to the warehouse to get new computers for maybe a faculty break room or a student worker desk to have back up computers without buying new ones. I remember even buying a few monitors and computers from auction. Now I understand that these perfectly fine older computers are be sold (without the hard drives I'm sure) for a pittance when we could utilize them on campus or for home use (when we purchase at auction.) Why the changes? Why outsource? How hard would it be to keep them for campus use or staff / faculty sale?

RESPONSE: I appreciate the time you took to share your concern. Fresno State uses its technology equipment in many ways, well beyond the traditional end-of-life warranty period. For example, faculty laptops that are replaced move to the tech-lending area on the second floor of the Henry Madden Library where students and faculty may borrow them. Staff computers that get refreshed will then get repurposed for other uses, such as shared/kiosk computers and computers for student employees. Damaged and broken computers remain in storage to be used for its spare parts until nothing usable remains. I encourage you to discuss these specific instances and your department, school or college needs with your IT Liaison, who can help facilitate a discussion to support other campus needs. For personal purchases, these must follow Fresno State policies and can be done through our Surplus Property Warehouse: http://www.fresnostate.edu/adminserv/purchasing/warehousepro/property/surplus.html.

 


CONCERN: A complaint made on the President’s Feedback page about an employee has been referred to the appropriate administrators.


CONCERN: While we appreciate seeing future bulldogs on our campus, is there a way to possibly not have tours during finals week? As mentioned by other students, the children are very abrupt/rude and distracting especially in the library which is our getaway to study for finals. I appreciate you taking this into consideration.

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this to our attention. Our two offices (Admissions and Recruitment & Outreach and Special Programs) responsible for providing campus tours do not offer any campus tours during finals week. If you know of any offices/programs who are providing tours during finals, please reach out to our offices (Admissions and Recruitment at 278.2048 or Outreach and Special Programs at 278.5374) so we can follow up accordingly.


CONCERN: Can we have flex hours and telecommute hours during the summer?

RESPONSE: Employees should consult with their supervisor or manager for possible options for an Alternative Work Schedule. Telecommuting work schedules are at the discretion of the manager and are based upon the operational needs of the department.


CONCERN: I am not going to complete the "Campus Direction" survey from Marts & Lundy as I am addressed incorrectly in the email as "Mrs. X." Other professors who received this email were addressed as "Dr. X" in their emails.

In principle this isn't a huge deal, but I have my PhD and I expect an email from the University President to address me as such. I'm especially bothered because the email also addresses me as "Mrs." -- and therefore is presumptuous on my marital status as well.

Whomever has designed this survey has not done their homework. If we want the workplace to be equitable for women, we need to avoid mistakes like this. This problem could have been easily avoided by addressing all of faculty as "Professor."

 

RESPONSE: Thank you for writing. The online survey was emailed to several members of our campus community, as well as alumni, friends and donors to invite feedback for our upcoming Fresno State Comprehensive Campaign.

We apologize that your prefix was incorrect. The faculty and staff information that is provided for our alumni/donor database does not include prefixes. Please contact Advancement Services at advhelp@csufresno.edu to update your information. We work diligently to keep the alumni/donor database updated, and welcome your support. 

 

CONCERN: I think it's great that Fresno State allows student groups on campus the opportunity to express their right to free speech, such as the pro-life chalk messages near the fountain. However, with this opportunity comes responsibility and tact. The chalk art was placed there in April and is still there to this day, in June. I believe there should be a time limit of when the chalk art can be displayed, such as a one- or two-week period. After that time frame, the student groups should be held responsible to remove their chalk art.

This should be applied to any and all opportunities of this nature. I was disappointed to see the chalk art on display during commencement season, as many families and visitors came to campus and saw the messages and inadvertently believed it represented the message of the University as a whole. I noticed the grounds crew doing a wonderful job of beatifying the campus right before commencement. I just wish the University thought to do the same for the chalk art, which at this point, is an eyesore - regardless of what the message stands for. Thank you.

RESPONSE: We are in the process of updating the University’s Time, Place and Manner Policy.  The draft policy includes the provision for chalking and addresses the duration chalk can remain before being removed. 


CONCERN: Nepotism - the practice among those with power or influence of favoring relatives or friends, especially by giving them jobs. Are we going to end up like the State Board of Equalization with a nepotism problem? It has become increasingly difficult and frustrating to work with people who are a relative of a Dean or related to someone in the same department. It is discouraging for those of us who work hard to try and move into better positions and then have to deal with attitudes by a team of relatives.

RESPONSE: As described in APM 303, the CSU Nepotism Policy (HR-2004-18) states “It is the policy of the California State University to seek for its administrators, instructional faculty, and support staff the most qualified candidates through appropriate search procedures preceding each appointment and promotion. There shall be no bars to the appointment of immediate family members in administrative, faculty or staff employment categories, in the same or different units or departments so long as the following standard is met: No CSU employee shall vote, make recommendations or in any way participate in decisions about any personnel matter which may directly affect the selection, appointment, evaluation, retention, tenure, compensation, promotion, termination, other employment status or interest of an immediate family...” 

Please contact Marylou Mendoza-Miller, Associate Vice President of Human Resources, at or Rudy Sanchez, Interim Associate Vice President for Faculty Affairs, to discuss your concerns. 


CONCERN: A concern about a faculty member was submitted to the President’s Feedback page. The matter has since been referred to the appropriate administrators for review.


CONCERN: The staff at Foundation auxiliary services do not properly communicate with Faculty. If a form is improperly filled out they do not contact the faculty, or make any effort to communicate. They simply hold onto the form for several weeks, and then send it back to the faculty with no instructions or other communication. This is unacceptable and disrespectful to faculty time.

RESPONSE: I am sorry you had this experience and appreciate you bringing this to our attention. In the future, you may contact Keith Kompsi, Director of Foundation Financial Services, at kkompsi@csufresno.edu or seek assistance from your department administrative assistant. 

 


CONCERN: A concern about the Smittcamp Family Honors College was submitted to the President’s Feedback page in late July. The concern focused primarily on the selection process and a perceived lack of transparency.

RESPONSE: The Smittcamp Family Honors College (SFHC) strives to create an inclusive, respectful and equitable environment in which academically talented and motivated young people in the Central Valley can pursue their academic dreams. Each year, reading teams of faculty, staff and current SFHC Scholars review the 500-600 completed applications (each team reviews a subset). Each team provides the Director with a ranked list of applicants (selects, high alternates, medium alternates) based on their assessment of the applicant’s high-school grades, test scores, essays, extracurricular activities, recommendations and demonstrated interest. Offers are extended based on that list.

From time to time, a Scholar might be placed on probation following a semester in which s/he did not meet the minimum cumulative GPA requirement (3.25 for the first two years and 3.50 for the last two). While such Scholars are on probation, their scholarship is kept current so as to give her/him a chance to raise their GPA. This strategy works more than 90% of the time. If a Scholar does not meet the minimum GPA requirement, s/he will be dismissed from SFHC.  Under no circumstances, does a dismissed student receive a scholarship.

The source of the scholarships has always been public and is updated annually. Please see:  https://www.fresnostate.edu/academics/honors/support/donors.html.

With the current level of donor support, we are able to fund only 50 new scholars per year.  Almost all of the 500-600 applicants who are reviewed annually are excellent students and have extensive lists of extracurricular activities. Unfortunately, as described above, the review process is highly competitive, and we cannot admit all of them.

A few additional facts may be of interest:

  • During the 2017-18 AY, Scholars performed more than 3,600 hours of community service at 70 local organizations.
  • Over the 20-year period since the inception of the program (1998-present), readers have evaluated 10,534 applications, of which 1,082 Scholars have been admitted (~10% admission rate; very competitive).
  • The majority of our Scholars have come from the four-county area including Fresno (625), Tulare (111), Kings (52) and Madera (52).
  • Over the same 20-year period, 840 Scholars have graduated, with a four-year graduation rate of 90%.
  • More than 55% of program alumni live in the Central Valley (Stockton to Bakersfield), and 70% live in California. All of our alumni are professionals who work in different fields (medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, law, engineering, teaching, etc.) or are entrepreneurs and own their own businesses. Regardless of their careers, they are leaders in their fields who contribute positively to the betterment of the communities they live in, including those right here in the Central Valley.

CONCERN: An article in today's Fresno State Campus News states "If you are new to the university, introduce yourself to the campus community through Campus News. Let us know who you are, where you came from, and why you chose to work at Fresno State. Send your info to campusnews@csufresno.edu and we will feature you in an upcoming issue." It would be nice if the campus reached out to new employees rather than vice versa.

RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion. University Communications, the office that manages the Campus News e-newsletter, will determine if they can identify and communicate directly with new employees.


CONCERN: Please go back to the old search option when utilizing the Fresno State web page. I receive 0 information on what I am looking for. What was the purpose of this?

RESPONSE: I appreciate that you have taken the time to send information about your experience with the new search feature on the Fresno State homepage. Unfortunately, we will not be able to go back to the previous search tool. During this summer, Google (the company) modified their search functionality, which led to the cancelation of the CSU-wide contract that was in place to provide the search functionality for the websites of all 23 CSU campuses and the Chancellor’s Office. Fresno State and the CSU necessitated a move to a new web search platform called SearchBlox. Similar to other new tools, the SearchBlox tool has just been put into place and will need to be fine-tuned over time, as the campus continues to use the search tool and provides feedback.

Please continue to provide feedback about any issues you have. You can reach our Fresno State Help Desk at 278.5000, http://fresnostate.edu/help/, or hdfeedback@csufresno.edu.

POSTED ON 06/20/18

CONCERN: The Student Affairs website was revamped recently and is now virtually unusable. Any useful information has been dumped into four meaningless buckets--Access, Engagement, Well-Being, and Success--with no rhyme or reason as to what goes where. The site is full of useless stock-photos, image carousels, and "Accordion" sliding menus that hide text and make it much more difficult to simply read the site and learn anything. Critical information has not been posted or is hard to find. I'm sitting here in April trying to find information about when Fall registration begins for students, and can't. On the other hand, there's a "Freshman Admissions" guide from two years ago that still references discontinued placement tests and CSU Mentor! Someone needs to take a pragmatic approach to redesigning this site that delivers critical information in a simple, direct manner.

RESPONSE: We appreciate your concern and appreciate you bringing this to our attention. We are conscious of the sheer amount of information that needs to be conveyed to our students, and we are very intentional and strategic about how we deliver that information. We will definitely make sure to look into the Fall registration issue, as well as the out-of-date Freshman Admissions guide. It is important for us to have updated information that is easy to navigate for the modern student.

The new website format was designed to prioritize the accessibility of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management information and resources. The buckets you mentioned, located at the top of the homepage for the Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, are intended to be a shortcut to key programs and services. However, the homepage has also been built out with a link to each department within the Division.

If you have any other suggestions or concerns, please direct them to Amanda Stewart (amstewart@csufresno.edu). Thank you.


CONCERN: Fresno State's social media depicts students goofing off and wasting time. It gives the impression that nothing serious goes on here. There's information about Vintage Days and sports, plus bragging about how much money people donate, but very little of substance that would indicate that we're considered a top research university in the nation, or that we offer academic opportunities that rival some of those provided by respected institutions. Neither Facebook nor Twitter nor any of the other social media channels represent the university well. Why aren't we doing a better job? We look foolish.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your concern about Fresno State's social media. We strive to tie our social media posts to points of the University’s Strategic Plan, including student success, community partnerships, preparing future leaders, improving the graduation rate, being a bold leader, the "3Ds," increasing engagement to build loyalty and philanthropy, and improving overall perception.

We also post about events like Vintage Days or corn sales because they bring people to campus, which is part of our standards, and they're big enough events to earn local media coverage.

In addition, we recently posted about the impact of alumni in transforming downtown Fresno, a local manufacturing summit for our community and the hands-on experience our Lyles College of Engineering offers, President Castro being awarded "President of the Year" by the Cal State Students Association, how city and regional planning majors are involved with an innovative master-planned community, and how the honorary doctorate was awarded to an alumnus whose work has impacted thousands of lives.

We hope this helps further clarify the type of stories we are posting on Fresno State's social media.


CONCERN: Why does the College of Health & Human Services continue to use the BETR financial system when it is touted as "antiquated" and very few colleges continue to use it? It is a very user unfriently program and if information is not entered exact to directions, it is useless. The college wants to reconcile against Data Warehouse. It is really a complete waste of time and duplicates much of what departments already do. Also, if they want to continue using this horrible system, then they need to provide training and support to departments who do not have staff that is a 'friend' or someone of color .. there is evidence of discrimination from the financial staff in the Dean's office and those who do not fit that description and have to rely on their support to learn the system are set up for failure! Someone needs to take a good look at the CHHS Dean's office for blatant show of favoritism and discrimination. I didn't want to bring this up on here as I plan to pursue that further, but please address the use of the BETR system. Thank you SO very much!

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concerns on the BETR financial system used in the College of Health and Human Services. In order to integrate financial information into the decision-making process, the BETR system has proven to be a useful tool for our staff and chairs to communicate financial needs to the Dean's Office. By design, this tool is updated regularly to remain current and it allows departments to get detailed financial information on a daily basis to aid departments in the reconciliation of their accounts. In addition, the BETR System has been requested for use in the Center for Faculty Excellence and the Career Development Center.

Training for using BETR is provided to college and department staff in group and individual formats. If additional training is needed, our fiscal office team can provide that training and support. Please contact the Dean's office for training needs on BETR with your team as needed.

As for your concern of favoritism and discrimination, Fresno State takes such situations seriously. We are committed to fair employment practices and fostering a work environment where all staff and faculty thrive. As such, we value your feedback and welcome a chance to discuss your concern further. Please contact Dean Hironaka-Juteau at 278-4004 or Human Resources at 278-2032 regarding any specific concerns.


CONCERN: Perhaps we could refrain from posting commercial advertisements on the Fresno State News or campus homepage? Although we have many Pink, Fleetwood Mac, or boxing fans....it might be good to remember we are a university, not an advertising vehicle for such events?

RESPONSE: The events that are promoted (not commercially advertised) on the University’s digital channels are hosted at the Save Mart Center, which is part of Fresno State. By encouraging our campus community members, alumni and neighbors to attend cultural, performing arts and music events, we continue to reinforce town-gown relations, which are at the heart of our efforts to establish even stronger ties between the University and its surrounding communities.


CONCERN: I have been working at Fresno State for 15 years and I have always been proud to work at the university. After yesterday's events it is the first time that I have truly been embarrassed. Professor Jarrar Randa made incredibly vile and horrible statements on twitter regarding the passing of Barbara Bush. A statement was put out by the university saying that she was representing herself and not the university. I understand that individuals have the right to say what they want whenever they want, but it is a understanding for employees is that you are always a representative of the university, regardless if you are at work or not. You should uphold the university's standards at all times, especially when on a public forum. It is a privilege to work at such a wonderful place, and she obviously has no respect for the university, any of her fellow employees or President Castro. She specifically called out President Castro and made a mockery of the university. She stated that she couldn't be fired, she used foul language and she made a horrible choice to belittle someone who has just passed. I understand that the university has to follow a process and there is a tenure process, but there has to be some recourse for these actions. I am truly embarrassed by this and I hope my faith in the university will again be restored.

RESPONSE: I appreciate and understand your concerns. I, too, was appalled by the reprehensible remarks that were made. However, regardless of the offensive nature of the tweets, Fresno State is bound as a public university to uphold the First Amendment. Private businesses can impose their own standards regarding employees’ speech. But Fresno State would be breaking the law if it punished or disciplined public employees for speech made in their capacity as private citizens.


CONCERN: As a student here at Fresno State, I have interacted with many different on-campus administrators and staff from different departments. There have been some helpful administrators/staff, but many who seem to not care about the students' needs. I have been sent from department to department with staff who seem to not know the answers or care to truly help me find the answer. I have been told several different answers by different people. In addition, some staff do not even direct students to the appropriate department or person of contact. Do they receive any annual training for professional development and communication improvement? Is there anything being done to help staff members provide better information to the students?

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing, and we are sorry to hear about your experience. Our faculty and staff take very seriously their role in helping to support our students and their academic experience.  However, we realize that we can always do better, and we do strive for a culture of strong customer service and timely follow up.

Yes, we do offer workshops on communication, customer service and navigating Fresno State. We are also investing in additional training for managers so they provide additional guidance and training with their staff. If you have specific confidential feedback you would like to share, please feel free to contact Human Resources.


CONCERN: Seek and out an implement widely the latest best practices in diversity and implicit bias training in every department and academic discipline, particularly as regards how to treat women. There is widespread sexism, gender discrimination and gender-based bullying of women that is going unaddressed, resulting in a culture of fear and intimidation. Along with the positive message of a priority placed on racial and ethnic diversity that the university is already sending, a priority of sending a clear message that sexual harassment and gender-based bullying will not be tolerated should also be sent. As things stand, women are freely degraded, bullied, slandered, defamed, and humiliated rather than uplifted, supported, respected, and treated fairly and equally. This needs to change.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concerns. Discrimination, harassment and bullying are not tolerated on our campus. Currently, all employees and students must complete an annual training on discrimination, harassment and retaliation. Please contact Jamie Pontus-Hogan, our campus Title IX Coordinator at jphogan@csufresno.edu or Marylou Mendoza-Miller, Associate Vice President of Human Resources/DHR Coordinator at maryloum@csufresno.edu to discuss your concerns or situations you have witnessed. Additional resources are available on our website at http://www.fresnostate.edu/adminserv/hr/title-ix/employees.html and states:

“Fresno State does not discriminate on the basis of sex, gender, gender identity, or sexual orientation in its employment practices, or in the education programs and activities it conducts in accordance with the Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, as well as Title VI and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  The University does not tolerate— and prohibits under CSU Executive Order 1096-the sexual discrimination of anyone on its campus and within the jurisdiction of the University by an employee.”


CONCERN: I am increasingly concerned with the ongoing harassment of pro-life students on the CSUF campus and the censorship of their university-sanctioned free speech displays by other students. The university has not taken a strong enough stance against this unacceptable behavior, which is why it continues. Students or faculty/staff responsible for trampling the free speech of others, however much they may disagree with the views expressed, must be held accountable. Students should feel safe to express themselves on their university campus. Students and staff need to understand the difference between spirited but civil discourse/disagreement and unacceptable harassment and censorship. Perhaps CSUF should implement a freshman course requirement that covers the U.S. constitution, as a preventative measure.

RESPONSE: Thank you for taking the time to express your concern. I agree with you that students should feel safe to express their perspectives on campus. A top priority of my administration is to ensure campus community members feel safe and protected from any form of harassment. We take each reported incident very seriously and often pursue with an investigation to ascertain the facts and hold people accountable, when warranted.


CONCERN: Is it possible to implement a corporate card system for authorized users who regularly purchase items for our departments? Some months, I find it difficult to financially balance department expenses and my personal expenses while waiting for reimbursement.

I know Foundation staff work tirelessly to ensure timely and accurate processing of all of our documents. If not a corporate card system, maybe hiring additional Foundation support staff would help. I’ve worked at other universities where corporate card systems worked well, but am open to other possible solutions. Thank you.

RESPONSE: Please discuss this matter directly with your supervisor to explore what alternatives might be available for the department to make purchases. The campus does provide a US Bank travel card for travel expenses as well as a Procurement Credit Card (ProCard) for allowable state-funded purchases. The Foundation’s typical timeframe for processing of reimbursements (once received with all approvals) is approximately 14 days.


CONCERN: I love Fresno State. I have worked here for the past couple of months and so far I think that there is a lot of good happening. However, I am involved with some of our LGBTQ+ groups on campus offered to faculty and staff, sometimes students, and it seems like there is a lack of support for this community in particular. I know that the CCGC is new and thriving, however, it seems with all the work that needs to be done it should definitely be its own entity and center. It doesn't really make sense to have it there anyway. Having their own space could maximize community and campus education around LGBQ+ and Trans Issues. This task alone is too much for a staff of ONE to complete. Most CSU's have their own Pride Center, and I feel that it would be best that we as an institution have conversations around this as a possibility. This way we can launch research into how many LGBTQ+ students we serve, what type of education is most needed/necessary, and provide intentional programming that will impact the student experience. Thank you for taking the time to read this, I hope this can encourage the campus to have conversations around these issues.

RESPONSE: Thank you for expressing your concern and we appreciate your involvement in and acknowledgment of the good things happening here at Fresno State. The Cross Cultural and Gender Center (CCGC) developed three years ago out of our former Women’s Resource Center and Central Valley Cultural Heritage Institute. One of the reasons for the shift was specifically the lack of intentional programming and services for our LGBTQ+ community. Hence LGBT+ Programs and Services was included as a part of the CCGC. Trans issues are also addressed through both our LGBTQ+ and Gender Programs and Services. As you may know, the CCGC provides inclusive programs and services for all groups on our campus through their Cross Cultural Programs and Services as well as targeted programs and services for some groups i.e. African American, American Indian, Asian Pacific Islander and Latino/a. One of our goals strives for is cross-cultural interaction among diverse groups. Having all of these program and service areas under one roof results in that. In addition, current space and resources do not allow for separate centers. On a system level, we continue to have the conversations regarding data collection that will give us more insight into our LGBTQ+ community so we can provide the best services. We agree there is more work to be done.


CONCERN: Last month's feedback was interesting. One was regarding dropping a formal search and simply give the position to an internal candidate the department prefers. Another was regarding the education dean search. Posting such questions indicate that faculty need to get training on academic policy. Such questions could also be answered by chairs easily, too.

RESPONSE: You make an excellent observation. Since, by design, we do not know who is submitting content to the President’s Feedback Page, we do not know if training or better communication would mitigate the issue. Search committees should certainly know and follow the appropriate policies and procedures. We also understand the need to provide more support to our academic department chairs. In the past year, the Center for Faculty Excellence and Faculty Affairs have encouraged deans to support new department-chair participation in systemwide new department chair training. This team has also published a Department Chairs’ Handbook, thanks to the work of former chair Jose Diaz. In conjunction with the Office for Organizational Excellence, the Center for Faculty Excellence and Faculty Affairs has developed a two-day “Principles of Supervision” workshop tailored for academic department chairs. We will be developing additional support for department chairs.


 

POSTED ON 04/30/18

CONCERN: I am a season ticket holder for basketball and a long-time donor to the Bulldog Foundation. I am disappointed to see so many more home Basketball game starting at 8PM. The number of games starting at 8 PM this year is more than in years past. There probably is a good reason. But despite my three attempts to call the Bulldog ticket office during normal office hours to find out I have not been able to talk to anyone. Just an automated message (frustrating). In my opinion these later start times are a problem for our youth, working adults and seniors. Starting an hour later than historically normal makes it too long of a night and is discouraging attendance. We sacrifice important student study time and sleep time on weeknights with all these 8PM games. I would not have reached out to your Feedback line with this if I could have reached someone with the Bulldog Ticket office. 

RESPONSE: Thank you for your long-time support of Fresno State Athletics. Our preferred start time for weeknight games is 7 p.m., however, the start time for our men's basketball games are determined through the Mountain West's television contracts with ESPN, CBS Sports Network and AT&T Sports Net. This past season, we had 3 of our 17 regular home men's basketball games designated as 8 p.m. start times, since they were broadcast on ESPNU or CBS Sports Network, and none of our 16 home women's basketball games started at 8 p.m. It is industry standard practice for major college basketball conferences to have start times set by the television contracts, which generate important revenue shared by each of the institutions in our conference. We are cognizant of the impact of having later start times on weeknights, and the weekend as well, and these concerns will be a factor in our upcoming negotiations with our television and digital broadcast opportunities in the future. 

Also, when calling 559-278-3647 (our Bulldog Ticket Office), from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.Monday-Friday, there is a brief message at the beginning and then prompts to press 1 or 2. Pressing 1 directs fans to our sales team and entering 2 directs customers to the ticket office or Bulldog Foundation. To reach the Bulldog Foundation directly, our BDF staff can be reached from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday at (559)278-7160.


CONCERN: Fresno State does a good job of trying to be inclusive of individuals from different ethnic, demographic and religious backgrounds. What appears to be lacking is an awareness of age discrimination in both the classroom as well as in faculty and staff hiring. I am aware of several situations in which age has created a barrier for student success and employment opportunities. Although age was never explicitly discussed in these situations, there were clearly suggestions that younger students and candidates were more beneficial to the university's success and thus should be given preference.

RESPONSE: Fresno State is committed to the principles of equal employment opportunity, affirmative action, nondiscrimination and providing access to programs, services, employment and educational opportunities. Please contact Human Resources at (559)278-2032 regarding any specific concerns.


CONCERN: Originally, this feedback page seemed like a good idea, but now I have found myself spending too much extra time I don't have, trying to respond to someone's half-cocked vent session. The majority of the time, the complainant shows their ignorance of the matter about which they are complaining and provides too little information for the appropriate department/individual to form a truly helpful, informative response.

There either needs to be a better system of "weeding out" the frivolous complaints, or this whole thing should be ditched. It just seems to be creating more work for already overworked staff.

RESPONSE: The Feedback Page was established to ensure that students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends have an anonymous way to share concerns and ask questions. Positive feedback is also appreciated. I believe this is an important way for the Cabinet and me to answer questions, dispel false rumors or address concerns whenever possible. We have also added an easy-to-use archive of prior questions and answers to reduce duplicate questions. There are many examples of positive change that have come about due to the feedback from our campus community. I appreciate the efforts from our Cabinet members and their staff in preparing responsive answers to the questions received.


CONCERN: Super Sunday, during the month of February (Black History Month), is highly offensive to me and, as an African American, insults my intelligence. What are you trying to say by assuming that you could possibly recruit young African Americans by visiting various predominately African American congregations? Young African Americans wanting to know about Fresno State can be found all over Fresno, not just in Baptist congregations! Also, why would the university and Chancellor disrupt people's day of worship just to increase their African American student population? Also, why isn't this done at any other time than Black History Month?

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback regarding this past February's Super Sunday presentation hosted on February 25th at nine Fresno-area African American churches. Dating back to 2005, the Super Sunday is a yearly event that local churches opt to participate in. Fresno State, along with a number of sister California State Universities (CSU's), have the African American Initiatives that speaks to the issues of engagement, student/parent preparation, admissions, retention and graduation for the AA student. Fresno State is committed to increasing the number of African American students on campus, as well as to presenting a positive learning experience to prospective students and their parents.   

Leading into Black History month, Fresno State hosts the annual Pastor's Breakfast in January (week prior to MLK weekend) where area pastors are provided updates on the African American statistics on post-secondary enrollment and graduation at our institution. I say this to address your concern regarding the accessibility of information about Fresno State in the African American community. It's not so much that the information can't be found, but the feedback that community members have engaged us with is that they welcome our presence to promote our transparency in addressing the low post-secondary going rates of local African American students in our area.  

Our Super Sunday presence was in no way intended to disrupt any religious worship experience as we made efforts prior to the Super Sunday event to prepare each congregation for our visit (e.g. meeting and on-going communication with each pastor and/or designee, promotional flyers, and social media coverage). Our presence was encouraged and approved by each respective pastor, and I hope that you have taken your concerns to them as well, so that feedback can be shared and discussed for them to consider for possible future visits.  

The Fresno State African American Initiative (AAI) will be operating on a year-round basis, and the Super Sunday event can be viewed as the "official" kick-off of our efforts in doing more in the African American community to not only engage and prepare students, but parents as well. Please be on the look-out for sister churches to host College Saturday Academies over the course of this coming summer and Fresno State Ambassadors being visible at community block parties hosted by Bringing Broken Neighborhoods Back to Life. We hope that the African American community sees us as their campus and that our efforts help provide a link to our campus where we welcome their presence. Thank you for your feedback. 

For more information about the Fresno State AAI, please feel free to reach out to Wendy Nelson, African American Initiative Coordinator, who coordinated this year's Super Sunday efforts.  Wendy can be reached at (559) 278-2038 or via email: wendyw@csufresno.edu


CONCERN: If a department already has an internal candidate they want to hire, can they not waste people’s time by opening up the application?

RESPONSE: Many components of our recruitment process are mandated by federal and state regulations, CSU collective-bargaining agreements, and CSU and University policies.The campus’s hiring practices allow for job openings to be available to qualified employees and, when indicated, off-campus applicants. We value professional development and encourage employees to pursue career-growth opportunities. At the same time, the University is committed to the principles of Equal Employment Opportunity and recruitment strategies that will attract a diverse workforce.


CONCERN: In response to your recent feedback regarding the reasons that "Born in the USA" is played at athletic events I would recommend you look at the lyrics of the song. The song is anything but a call for national pride and is actually a critique of United States policy at the time. In fact, President Reagan was actually told he couldn't use the song for his re-election campaign by Bruce Springsteen. (Note: There were two concerns submitted on this topic.)

RESPONSE: Thank you for the feedback and your concern related to this topic. The song will no longer be played at any athletic events moving forward in the recognition of military veterans. Thank you, and we appreciate your concern.


CONCERN: The Dean of the School of Education and Human Development (which includes Counseling) is retiring after many years, and there has been talk that the Associate Dean will simply take his place. While the Associate Dean is well-liked and respected, many feel it is inappropriate for a school and University to decide such things without conducting a national search for a new Dean. What assurances can the President’s Office give that the Dean position will merit a rigorous search where outside candidates are given proper and legitimate consideration?

RESPONSE: All deans’ searches are conducted per campus policy (e.g., APM 320) and practice. Every dean’s search is an open and national/international search. The search committee is created per campus policy and provides recommendations to the Provost (the President’s designee for academic dean searches). The Provost is the final decision-maker, in consultation with the president, regarding dean appointments. Given the timing of a dean’s retirement and the length of time it takes to conduct a national search, an interim appointment sometimes does occur. Be assured though that the University will cast a wide net to fill the permanent position.


CONCERN: MPP staff and Human Resources treatment of staff when we have concerns or issue with workload or management. I have several friends who are having issues with their supervisors/management, they have reached out for help from Human Resources and unfortunately are given very poor service and treatment as well. Most staff on campus are good people that sometimes fall on hard times or not happy in the position they are in because of the treatment of management. When they do speak up they are then punished by being made felt that they are not a team player or that there was no grounds for a dispute. I know you are a very busy person but if you could once in a while check up on HR and the disputes that go on, and insure that everyone is treated with respect and dignity. Thank you.

RESPONSE: The University cares about each member of our team. Please direct your specific concerns to the Associate Vice President of Human Resources, Marylou Mendoza-Miller at (559) 278-2032 or Vice President for Administration, Deborah Adishian-Astone at (559) 278-2083.  We also have an Employee Assistance Program available for all employees – for information on this program please call (559) 278-1655


 

POSTED ON 03/09/18

CONCERN: To College Administration: FSU is deplorable on Facebook and Twitter. What are you doing posting ads for Victoria's Secret? Are you getting kickbacks or something? Please put a stop to this.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback about our social media. We hear your concerns. While we do not actually post ads for Victoria's Secret, we do promote being a part of the PINK Collegiate Collection. We have only had one recent post on Facebook and Twitter, however, and it was in connection to holiday gifts, similar to what we do for other licensed products. (Please note that the @PINKFresnoState account is not connected to the University.)  This line is not about lingerie; it is about collegiate loungewear, and there are more than 100 participating colleges. Fresno State is one of the top-selling PINK schools, and one of the reasons we were chosen for the line is because we have so many students who are excited about the line and became student reps (their social media is separate from the University's, as well). Also, we receive 20% in royalties, which is higher than normal licensed products, and the funds do go to support student groups on campus. We hope this helps clarify the situation.


CONCERN: The university's social media need to be improved, particularly for live events. If you can't handle live events on time, then why have them at all? Pretending it's OK to be late is not working. If you can't even be on time, there's no point.

Best regards,
A Fresno State Alum

RESPONSE: Thank you for staying connected to your University and for tuning into our live broadcast with President Castro. We apologize for starting a few minutes late. As a public institution, we are required to abide by the First Amendment and make sure that what we post on social media is accessible to everyone. This means we must add live captions to the live video, and, at the time, we were working with a new system.


CONCERN: You need to be aware that the following site has problems:
http://www.fresnostatenews.com/

This site is not updated very often and it is hard to navigate. The scroll bars and search engine are hard to use. The information is often days old and unorganized. If this is really a news site, shouldn’t there be new information every day? If you click on the videos link, there appears to be only about one video per month. If you click on the press releases link, there are very few new stories. Sometimes days go by before there is even one new post. If this is no longer your news site, please take it down. If it is your news site, it is a very poor representation of Fresno State.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your note. We agree that the Fresno State news site could benefit from several improvements. As such, we are in the process of developing a newly designed website that will better tell the University’s many compelling stories while also being responsive to users’ needs. Our goal is to launch a new campus news website within the next several months.


CONCERN: I would like you to please look into a couple of positions which I think have been granted in a nepotistic and untrustworthy manner.

Regarding one specific person, no one in our division (University Advancement) knows what he does, and he’s not in any organizational chart.

Regarding another position, I do not remember this position ever being posted and accepting applications. Is it normal for Fresno State to grant director-level positions to people who work remotely?

I am very concerned with the lack of trust and accountability among administration. Staff are being told that budgets are tight without a clear idea of where the money goes. Good work is not rewarded because apparently HR is not concerned about the quality of the work people do.

RESPONSE: The specific positions mentioned are Foundation employees in the division of University Advancement (UA). State and Foundation searches have different requirements. The Foundation search process allows managers the flexibility and efficiency to make an offer when a known candidate is uniquely qualified with specific skills, experience, location, and/or availability. These were the circumstances for both of these qualified foundation candidates.

Except in rare instances when uniquely qualified Foundation candidates were known and available, University Advancement undertakes the full search process, and plans to continue doing so.

Both of these employees are located in Southern California and support Fresno State development fundraising efforts. The position centered in Los Angeles is part-time and concentrates on building relationships with alumni to increase support for our university across the LA basin. This position strives to increase alumni engagement by connecting passionate alumni to our President's Southern California Leadership Council. The Council raises money to grow scholarships for students that may transfer from the area to Fresno State. The second position dedicates 25% of its full-time employment to increasing alumni engagement in San Diego. The remaining balance of this staff person's time is working remotely to support our online fundraising activities, like Day of Giving and Crowdfunding (coming this spring).

These employees have been included on the University Advancement organizational chart, which can be found here.

I appreciate your concern regarding use of budget dollars and support of quality work, and I am glad you are aware of the priorities of our strategic plan.  I encourage employees to take specific concerns regarding budgets and human resources to your managers, who would welcome your questions, input, and ideas that support the University goals.


CONCERN: At football games, and now at the last basketball game, when veterans are introduced the sound system plays Bruce Springsteen's "Born in the USA". While I like that Springsteen and that song, a lot of our veterans, including many veterans who are Fresno State graduates, were not born in the US but still served honorably in our armed services.

I love the way the crowd always gives Vets a standing ovation but perhaps a different crowd rousing song could be chosen. Just a thought.

RESPONSE: Years ago, the song 'Born in the USA' was selected for the 'Hero Of The Game' honoring for no reason besides its catchy yet intense beat and the pride it instantly instills in its listeners when 'USA' can be heard loud through the speakers, ringing true to one's heart for the country they are fighting for, regardless of their origin of birth. 

Similar to our popular motto, 'Bulldog Born. Bulldog Bred', it doesn't mean you have to be born a Bulldog fan from birth, but rather that you have grown to love the Bulldogs and you feel pride in associating yourself with them.

The song was in no way intended to tell fans where a veteran was or was not born, but rather to invoke a sense of pride that we all share as we honor and thank those living in our local community who have selflessly fought for our freedoms. 


CONCERN: I used to work for state in the fall. I was hired in financial aid and I couldn’t keep my position because they really don’t care about people.

I was so excited to work there. It’s really sad that there are two supervisors that do nothing while counter staff, students and the counselors that meet with students do all the work.

That office is wasting money on two lead supervisors that I’m sure make a lot more than the rest of us did.

They are making the rest of Fresno State look bad.

RESPONSE: We regret to hear of your disappointment in your employment in the Financial Aid and Scholarships Office. The University does care about each member of our team. In Financial Aid, every member plays a vital role in performing many different functions of the office. Some positions have a great deal of contact with students, and others play a more behind-the-scenes role. Both are critical to serve the needs of the students.

We would be interested in more information to have a better understanding of your concerns.  Please feel free to reach out to the Director of Financial Aid and Scholarships.


CONCERN: Being much more transparent. Communication within departments and across campus vary vastly. Again, dress code for staff seems to be a concern as some "colleges" require one thing while others do not. Please point us to the appropriate dress code policy for staff!!!

RESPONSE: As a senior leadership team, we are all focused on ways to increase transparency and improve communications across campus and within individual departments. Please see the new strategic plan website where we post progress toward our strategic goals.

In addition, each semester, I hold an open forum for faculty and staff to voice questions and concerns. (The next one is Wednesday, March 14, from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. in North Gym 118.) We have also added new training and development opportunities for managers and leads to help support improved communications and performance standards.

Please note the University does not have a dress-code policy for staff in place. We expect managers and employees to apply appropriate judgement as to what is appropriate attire for our workplace.


CONCERN: In the wake of the tragedy at the Delta Sigma Phi fraternity, I am very disappointed that the University is not taking any disciplinary action to suspend the chapter. There are other incidents on college fraternities (and maybe some sororities) that involve events like these yet, some schools have taken immediate action to punish those who are in violation of laws. Why can't the University follow suit to enforce strict laws on fraternities and sororities?

RESPONSE: Allegations of misconduct by student organizations are investigated through our Student Organization Review process. The appropriate action is taken based on the findings of the investigation.


CONCERN: The University should start having campus police officers patrol school grounds to hand out citations against smokers, who are constantly ignoring the No Smoking Ordinance (Executive Order 1108). Since the CSU initiated the non-smoking policy at all of its campuses, it seems that many smokers continue to ignore the rule and refuse to comply with orders - especially on the Fresno State campus. As per the concern an anonymous person wrote (between Aug. 29-Dec. 8, 2017), I agree that we as a "community" are indeed insulted and attacked by none other than addicts that think that it's okay to ignore the policies that are already put into place, and act like that's not their problem. If Fresno State (and other CSU's) are trying to promote "clean air" to allow everyone to "breathe freely," how do you expect anyone to do that if people continue to disrespect that rule? How do you expect students (or faculty members) to remind those smokers as a courtesy that they cannot have any smoke or tobacco products on campus grounds?  

It's called a "courtesy" for a reason. There's no choice but to enforce citations to smokers who continue to ignore rules and aren't courteous of others. The ordinance is not as effective as it should be and there needs to be strict rules put into place.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. We are enforcing the new CSU systemwide smoking policy in the manner instructed by the Executive Order and consistent with other CSU campuses. Our primary focus is on education and awareness. Smoking- and tobacco-cessation programs are available for students, faculty and staff. A web page has been established for individuals to report non-compliance. We have a very active campus-wide Task Force that is continuing to identify opportunities for communication, and they are focused on “heat mapping” buildings and areas where individuals continue to smoke, and we are monitoring accordingly. Click here for more information. If you feel threatened or unsafe in any way, please contact Fresno State Police immediately at 559.278.8400


CONCERN: As a staff member, there are times where there does not seem to be an air of collaboration between various departments, and sometimes makes it hard to get my job done when others are reluctant to help, or even ignore emails! I feel awful when I have to have my supervisor reach out, and even then, we have no luck.

With that being said, is anything being looked into with regards to a comprehensive training program that encourages collaboration between departments? While I do truly appreciate your commitment to professional development at various levels, I feel as though this sort of training would help, regardless of who you serve. Thank you!

RESPONSE: You raise an important point. While there are many examples of effective collaboration happening between individuals and departments, we regret to hear about your specific frustrations, and we acknowledge that this may be a problem within certain areas. As part of our Workplace Quality action plan, we are exploring additional trainings to improve collaboration, communication and collegiality. We are also in the process of engaging the campus in a conversation around Principles of Community that will help support our efforts to build a more collaborative environment.


CONCERN: To Pres. Castro: I noticed that you dodge concerns raised on the feedback page instead of actually trying to fix problems. For example, instead of actually addressing dangerous traffic and parking lot issues, you simply say, "we are sorry that you are experiencing this inconvenience" or "We will monitor accordingly." That's not even making any attempt at a reasonable process for addressing and fixing serious problems. It's just blowing smoke in our faces.

And instead of stopping the use of leaf blowers, you say, "the leaf blowers are a necessary tool." And instead of fixing bathrooms, you say, "It would not be prudent to invest significant fiscal resources to renovate these restrooms" or "Many restrooms on campus do not have hot water during non-heating months."

Even to students, you ignore financial concerns raised by an unreasonable policy for 24/7 computer access and say, "We also understand and empathize" while keeping the policy. If you are not really going to do anything but excuse yourself, why act as though you are?

RESPONSE: The philosophy of our feedback page is that every voice and every one matters. The Cabinet and I always listen carefully to different perspectives. In many cases, these perspectives influence our decisions. In other cases, there may be policies and regulations that prevent us from doing what is recommended. Sometimes, it is not practical to implement a suggestion due to cost or other reasons. As your President, I must make decisions that support the greater good of our university. I will continue to do this with input from diverse perspectives.


CONCERN: Hi the latest response to blackboard is concerning. I have contacted help desk, and they told me "Fresno state did not pay for higher tier support for blackboard platform", so the coverage of the support is ONLY computers, and NOT mobile devices. There hasn't been a iOS (apple mobile) update for almost a year. Blackboard on iPhones does NOT work. Also mobile version of any internet browser does NOT work on iPhone.

Please contact help desk to get a better understanding of the blackboard problem.

RESPONSE: Fresno State began support for the Bb (Blackboard) Mobile app began when it became available as part of the CSU contract several years ago. In 2015, Blackboard updated its mobile support to be based on the role at the university setting, resulting in the Bb Student app, and more recently the Bb Instructor app. In summer 2017, the word "student" was dropped from the name of the student app, and the icon changed. The Center for Faculty Excellence (CFE) updated its webpages immediately at the time of the change, located on the Blackboard "landing page" (blackboard.fresnostate.edu), the Bb login page, the Bb Mobile page (http://www.fresnostate.edu/academics/blackboard/bbmobile.html), and in the online Blackboard Student Orientation. The campus also sent communication out to the students.

The CFE Instructional Designers and the Academic Technology Resource Center also support tablet use of Blackboard, including the Bb app, and accessing Bb through Safari and Chrome browsers. The "disappearing panel" experienced by the user is not a defect but rather a feature to provide more screen area to course resources, for example. Panels can be brought back with a simple finger swipe. For users with laptops and desktops, the trackpad or mouse can also hide or expose the left panel. This is useful for professors showing a resource within Blackboard during class and needed more screen space, for example.

The Technology Services Help Center works with the Academic Technology Resource Center and CFE to support mobile and tablet use. Please refer to the webpages listed here or visit our teams to get support for your questions.


CONCERN: Why does the Athletic Corp contribute a flat rate towards employee insurance coverage regardless of the number of dependents covered, as opposed to using a more standard scaled contribution? An Athletic Corp employee with no dependents will likely be fully covered with no out of pocket contribution required. Conversely, because premiums are higher when more dependents are covered by the policy I am required to contribute nearly $1,000 each month out of pocket to ensure coverage for my spouse and children. It is almost as though I am being discriminated against for having a family. If the Athletic Corp moved from a flat rate to a tiered contribution this issue would be alleviated, and employees would pay a fair amount relative to the number of dependents in their respective families.

RESPONSE: We understand your concern. The Athletic Corporation (AC) contributes a flat monthly amount ($900) towards medical, dental and vision for all full-time AC employees. This is a common approach, especially for private employers. This monthly contribution covers the majority of cost for the employee only and, unfortunately, does not cover the cost for additional dependents. The Athletic Corporation is an auxiliary organization and fiscally cannot afford to increase the monthly employer contribution at this time. Employer contributions are reviewed periodically by the Athletic Corporation Board of Directors.


CONCERN: Thank you for replying to my concern of the building renovation program and the trust funds being swept to cover this. Having the actual funding for this clarified helps a lot. However, we are being told by our Dean's office that the Provost's office is specifically requesting this information to sweep our funding to cover this. Which tells me there is a few issues going on here. 1. This is correct and your office is unaware that this is happening. 2. This is incorrect and you are unaware that the Dean's office is telling us this in order for them to sweep our funds. I want to believe that there is a misunderstanding somewhere and not that the Provost's office or Dean's office is attempting to take money for other purposes then they are stating. I feel it would be beneficial for your office to look into this matter to ensure that directions are not being given to take department state trusts account funding when they should not be.

RESPONSE: Relative to trust funds, I have asked the provost to work with the deans to ensure that state trust funds are being used appropriately. The provost has asked each dean to account for state trust fund balances. My intent—and that of the provost—is not to sweep state trust fund balances but to make certain that such funds are not holding large reserves but are being used. Additionally, all state trust funds have agreements that stipulate for what they can be used.


CONCERN: The tech dock stations in classrooms are not easy to connect tech devices to the projection screen. 1) Faculty/Teachers have trouble or don't know how to connect. 2) The stations don't work or cables don't work.

There are too many occurrences where students are asked by teachers/faculty members if we know how to connect their laptop or tablet. As much as we are willing to help, I do not think it is fair for faculty to struggle so much to connect.

Often times the classroom is unavailable to arrive earlier for them to figure it out and it runs into class time to even try to figure it out. I have experienced teachers give up because they have to start class and can't afford to get behind with their lesson plan. I have asked new teachers if they get training or instructions on how to connect and they have said no. Whether or not if it is available online, or they did receive it with tons of other information when first being hired, there is a disconnect.

This is not just new faculty or based on the user, it is also the tech side. Furthermore, it is not a first day of class issue it is a constant issue. The station will work one day and not the next. The HDMI cable will work on some computers and not others. Sometimes the dock station won't send the cable to the projection (even though the computer picks up the cable). Sometimes the dock station doesn't pick up apple codes, or the dock camera switch doesn't work. Either way I don't think this should be a problem that faculty or anyone who uses rooms should have to deal with so much, especially when the university is trying to go digital.

Lastly, please don't tell me there is a number in each classroom to call for help or to visit a department for help. There have been times when it is during after-hours and no one is able to come into the room and they are unable to figure it out over the phone. I have also experienced a claim that it was fixed but have seen issues in the same classroom. I can give examples of which building, which room, which faculty but it is all over. If faculty cannot connect during the class time to use modern technology than that is a disservice from Fresno State.

One more thing, this is just a suggestion to make Fresno State better, I love being a student here and even getting this opportunity to express this issue. Go Dogs!

RESPONSE: I appreciate you taking the time to write and share your enthusiasm and love for being a Fresno State student and for expressing your suggestion. I will ask our Center for Faculty Excellence and our Technology Services division to look for ways to communicate training opportunities and support services more effectively.

Faculty receive a wide range of opportunities for learning how to utilize classroom technology. Technology training occurs for full-time faculty during their orientation process with support from Academic Affairs and Technology Services. Faculty also have ongoing opportunities to practice connecting their mobile devices (laptops, tablets, phones) during professional development training by the Center for Faculty Excellence and Classroom Video Services (CVS).

The DISCOVERe Hub and Helpdesk also provide technology support after hours by contacting 278-5000. The CVS desk (278-2674) offers in-person support until 5 p.m. and phone support until 7:30 p.m. After 7:30 p.m., we forward the CVS phone line to the DISCOVERe Hub.  CVS is also working to standardize all of the centrally-scheduled rooms over the next few years. Fresno State currently has 170 of 250 centrally-scheduled rooms at what we describe as the DISCOVERe standard. We also work with the schools and colleges to update non centrally-scheduled rooms to the same standard.


CONCERN: Stop spending so much time, effort, money and influence on athletics. The prestige of sport as a University aside has become an obsession that threatens to subsume the academics that should be the bedrock of an admired college.

I realize the athletic programs bring in funds that are partially used for other needs. I believe the energy used to attract donors to the football, baseball, and basketball programs ought to be matched in zeal and man-power to efforts to attract donors to specific academic endeavors. Where is the funding donated by chemical companies, mass media publishing, and industry giants towards specific academic programs?

If they exist at all, you do a poor job of advertising them. Do better.

RESPONSE: Thank you for voicing your concern. Academics and athletics rising together, not one at the sacrifice of the other, is a key component to fulfilling our mission to boldly educate and empower students for success. This is not uncommon in higher education, as universities across the country are realizing and leveraging the strength that comes with embracing both aspects of an institution. Our commitment is to all of our students, in providing them with the support needed to succeed in life. To attain this goal, University Advancement has strategically placed a Director of Development in every college, as well as other key areas across campus. In doing so, donors can align their passions with an area that connects most deeply to them and the entire University can benefit from overall community engagement.


CONCERN: Please note: On the President's Feedback Page, my concerns about the university violating First Amendment rights were not addressed. Other people's concerns were listed, but not mine. You deleted my message. Proving that you are doing exactly the opposite of what you claim. "We never delete or hide any comments..." you stated. This is untrue. You are deleting/hiding comments, and you are deleting specific concerns raised about it when they are submitted to the President's Feedback Page. You must be deleting numerous other concerns rather than posting them on the President's Feedback Page also. You'll probably delete this one instead of posting it, too.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your note, and please accept my apologies if your previous posted concern was inadvertently missed. Due to a transitional period among staff who help manage my feedback page, there was a lapse of about three months when we weren’t able to address in a timely manner the concerns that had been submitted. As such, we had a backlog of concerns, many of which we did address in mid-January. Due to the backlog, your specific concern may have been inadvertently overlooked, but certainly not purposefully deleted or hidden. Please resubmit it if you are still concerned about any specific campus matter.


POSTED ON 01/16/18

CONCERN: The Community Newsletter is always so dated. It only comes out through email every once in a while, so by the time I get it, most of it is already old. Or boring. It seems more like it's a "rah-rah" thing for students than for the community. If the purpose is to get me to give money to FS, I can tell you that you've failed, because the newsletter doesn't make me feel like FS cares about me at all or what I can do for the university.

RESPONSE: The Community E-Newsletter comes out monthly (the third Thursday of every month) and includes stories that are both time sensitive as well as evergreen. The goal of this publication is to highlight stories from the past month that share community partnerships, regional impact and events. We strive to highlight articles that are of interest to our alumni and friends, and will continue to review the analytics to better understand our audiences’ interests and improve the content. If you have story suggestions, please send them to fsnews@listserv.csufresno.edu


CONCERN: Saw the article in the Collegian about a space for Veterans. I've noticed that we have two ROTC program offices, Veterans Service and Veterans Education Program offices. Couldn't any of these consolidate their programs to make a Veterans Resource Center more efficient as well as pool staff support to make it cost effective? Just a thought.

RESPONSE: Over the past year we have brought in consultants and worked with our Director of Veterans Affairs at the Chancellor’s Office to improve the services we provide to our Veteran students. As you saw in The Collegian, we have moved our Veterans Services Office to a temporary space on campus that allows more space for students and is centrally located. While it is a long-term goal for this campus to have a Veterans Resource Center, we are working on improving the services we can provide with the space we currently have. The Veterans Services Office is the “main hub” for students to connect with the campus and receive resources for other services, such as the Veterans Education Program. We have already hired an additional staff member for the office and also named a Director of Veterans Services who will be taking the lead on the recommendations given to us by the consultants. We hope to have a more streamlined process to share with the campus community soon. If you have future concerns or would like to discuss in more detail, please contact the University Registrar/Director of Veterans Services, Laura Yager, at 559-278-2191. Thank you.


CONCERN: Our campus could benefit from a clear reporting system for students who have grievances. Several other university campuses utilize an ombudsman in such a role. Over the years of working in student services, I've counseled several students who've had legitimate concerns about the way they have been treated (and in some cases harassed) by faculty and/or staff members. Oftentimes, the students are uncomfortable reporting their grievance to the appropriate supervisor (ex. department chair, dean, MPP, etc.) for fear of retaliation. I'm sure some employees might fear students issuing a complaint for frivolous reasons. However, a properly trained ombudsman who is impartial and objective can properly investigate and suss out the truth of the situation while maintaining confidentiality.

RESPONSE: Students should feel free to contact the Dean of Students or Human Resources.  We try to resolve differences in the least disruptive, most respectable manner possible.


CONCERN: It's alarming that new faculty are so nakedly warned against living "South of Shaw" by existing faculty members and staff when offering advice (sometimes unsolicited) about where to live in town. It happened to me and it happened to others at the start of the new school year. This advice not only belies the underlying racism and segregation that have for so long afflicted this city and region, it also continues to criminalize and red-line some of the neighborhoods our students live and work in. It may be that faculty and staff are acting on what they perceive to be good intentions, which suggests that the university could do a better job of educating its faculty and staff on the historical and pernicious ways racist space and narratives get replicated.

RESPONSE: First, thank you for bringing this issue to my attention. Secondly, I am sorry to read that the perceptions of others were placed upon you as a new employee. While we cannot prevent people from having personal opinions, the notion that living anywhere “South of Shaw,” is somehow undesirable, is one that is most unfortunate. The City of Fresno has many wonderful neighborhoods including areas such as the Tower District and the historic Fresno High neighborhood. The University House is also located south of Shaw, and my family and I thoroughly enjoy our neighborhood. In addition, areas in Northwest Fresno both south of Shaw and west of Highway 99, are experiencing exciting housing and retail growth, which are providing additional options for new and existing residents. I welcome your specific thoughts on how the university might incorporate your ideas in our future “On Boarding” efforts to make new employee experiences more welcoming.


CONCERN: The way that you handled the "MLK Peace Garden" event was extremely poor. If you had not mass emailed the entire university, many people (including myself) would not have even known it occurred. You gave the prank more attention. Regardless, the "incident" was a harmless prank. It's wasn't an attack on any "core values of discovery, diversity and distinction". The fact that you felt the need to alert the entire university, police, and several """leaders""" is extremely laughable. You made a mountain out of a molehill. In the future, just take the stuff down and don't make a fuss about it.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your perspective with me. The incident that occurred in the Peace Garden was disrespectful to Dr. King and his legacy. I have no specific evidence to conclude that this disrespectful act was a prank. Dr. Kapoor, the founder of the Peace Garden, and I agreed that this was a teachable moment for our university and an opportunity to re-affirm why the Peace Garden exists and why it should be respected. The African Black Student Coalition, ASI Leadership and the Academic Senate Executive Committee were thankful for and in agreement with the actions we took on this matter. I hope this helps to clarify why this action was taken.


CONCERN: What is happening with the network slowdown? It's been like this since last Friday. Are we getting DDOS attacked?

RESPONSE: We apologize for the negative experience you had with the wireless network or network speed. We have not had any denial of service attacks on our campus network recently. I encourage you to reach out to our Help Desk (help.fresnostate.edu) the next time you experience poor network or internet performance.


CONCERN: Can you please regulate the amount of junk emails students are sent? We are spammed weekly, and it’s cluttering my inbox for important announcements.

RESPONSE: I appreciate your concern. Providing relevant and important information to our students, faculty, and staff is a priority for Fresno State, and this includes preventing unwanted external solicitation and phishing attempts. Our Fresno State technology systems automatically block a large number of junk email, spam, and phishing attempts from reaching our campus community from sources outside the university. Our University Advancement team has been looking at the various emails sent from internal Fresno State departments to define policy and best practices to help streamline effective communication to students, faculty, and staff.  We hope this collaborative effort will help us all be better communicators.


CONCERN: Vice President Adishian-Astone told The Collegian that financial incentive was not the chief motivator in Fresno State's decision to sell beer at football games. Since the university lost approximately $200,000 each season on beer sales since 2006, money had to be the key factor. Where is the money from the sales going, and why is the university trying to hide it?

RESPONSE: CSU Executive Order 1109, a California State University system-wide policy published in June, 2017 permits the sale of alcohol at university intercollegiate athletic events. An update to the university Alcohol Policy (G-04) was made as a result of EO 1109.  In implementing this policy, our commitment has remained on safety and maintaining a family-friendly atmosphere at athletic events. Concession operations are handled by a third-party provider (Pardini’s) and they remit commission revenue to the Athletic Department in accordance with their agreement. The income earned from concession commissions is included as a line item in the annual budget, which is available online here. We assure you the University is not hiding the income.


CONCERN: The last alumni magazine was sports, sports, and more sports. It makes it seem like all FSU cares about is sports. And it’s probably true.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. We understand that not everyone in our audience will be interested in a particular story or topic, so we try to address various interests from issue to issue. We also try to give readers the types of stories that they tell us they like best when we send out our reader surveys after each issue. In the 15-year history of Fresno State Magazine, this was only the second time a cover featured athletics. Our goal with this cover story was to go beyond sports to show the way three alumni who have risen to the highest level of pro sports are inspiring others in the region to dream big and aim high in whatever their chosen field of study may be. We also highlighted several former student-athletes who went pro in something other than sports. I have stated that one of Fresno State’s goals is for academics and athletics to rise together, and I hope that was conveyed in this issue with the story of the University’s No. 17 national ranking by Washington Monthly alongside the other content throughout the magazine.


CONCERN: Posting this comment here because they always seem to disappear from Fresno State's social media sites. You need to respect the First Amendment rights of those participating on your social media, not just state over and over: "We do value free speech." If you really value free speech, stop disrespecting people who share their opinions by not even listening to what they say, but just copying and pasting the same reply over and over. You say you value free speech, but you do not.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. Because we do value free speech, we never delete or remove any comments from Fresno State's social media. (If you have a specific example of this, please let us know, or if it was an account connected to Fresno State but not the actual institutional page, please let us know which page. Also, please note that Facebook recently switched to showing "Top Comments" by default, so perhaps your comment is still there, but you can't see it without switching to "All Comments.") 

Again, since we value free speech, we never tell people what to believe on social media; we let our community have the conversation instead. Therefore, we don't jump into a thread unless we need to correct misinformation. We apologize if this has come off as not listening to people in the past. We do share comments received on social media, but we respect your free speech by not telling you what to think, rather limiting ourselves to correcting misinformation.


CONCERN: Scheduling events on campus is a nightmare. Who is in charge of it? Scheduling is supposed to be, but I'm getting nowhere with them.

RESPONSE: While most campus events are scheduled the Scheduling Office (278-2491) other offices may be involved depending on the space requested. For example, the Student Involvement Office manages all student events, the Library manages all library rooms/spaces, the Kinesiology Department manages South Gym and the Music department manages Music Building rooms.  Some spaces are scheduled by one entity but managed by many (such as NG 118).  Please provide me with specific information about the space you wished to schedule and the event so we can work to improve our service.


CONCERN: I have worked on this campus for over 20 years and I see some troubling trends. Staff are not valued as evidenced by our lack of raises. As someone who has been on campus for quite a while, I have a hard time getting answers to questions from other offices. I often get incorrect answers and mistakes are frequent. This is due to the fact that there are so many new employees who do not know the campus or the job. It has made it difficult to do my job. I had planned to take a day off and couldn't because I had been trying to get an answer to a question from another office who did not respond to me after several e-mails. After having my Dean intervene, I received the answer, but too late for me to keep my plans. I will have to postpone my day off to come in and do the work that I could have gotten done earlier. This is frustrating since I am a dedicated hard working employee, and I can't even make ends meet. The bottom line is staff need raises.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. Staff compensation has been a priority for my cabinet and me. We have made progress to increase staff salaries. From 2014 to the start of fiscal year 2017, we have invested an additional $12 million in staff and faculty salary increases. Almost every new dollar that we have received from the state in the past four years has been used for faculty and staff compensation (salary and benefits).

We are also making a significant investment to onboard and train new and current employees.  However, if you are having a specific challenge with any colleagues or offices, please advise your immediate supervisor/manager. I am sorry that your plans were impacted by the lack of response from another colleague. If you have specific suggestions on training, please contact Organizational Excellence at 8-5330 we would love to know topics that would be helpful to share with our supervisors and new staff.


CONCERN: I am gravely concerned about President Trump's Proclamation dated September 24, 2017 severely restricting or banning travel to and from 8 countries. In particular, this ban creates an immense burden on members of our Fresno State community who are from these countries and are largely cut off from their family as well as prevented from being able to attend National Conferences by this executive order. In particular, our newest faculty, who are still working with temporary visas, are working tirelessly to educate the students of Fresno State in the classroom and through research opportunities, while dealing with immense uncertainty in their ability to legally remain in this country given the new, more stringent restrictions for permanent visas and no guarantee of temporary visa renewal. Furthermore, these talented academics have the ability to seek professorships in other countries where they would be treated more equitably. In either event, my department, Fresno State, and the entire education system would be negatively affected by the loss of these dedicated educators. In these uncertain times, I think it is necessary for the administration to reiterate its support for our faculty and students affected by this Executive Order and delineate how it intends to take action at the National level to protect our international faculty.

RESPONSE: Thank you for taking time to share your thoughtful and passionate concern. I agree with much of what you expressed in terms of our talented faculty who are experiencing serious concerns with recent proclamations and executive orders. As you may know, late last month, a federal appeals court ruled the latest version of President Trump’s travel ban policy should be partially blocked because the president appears to have exceeded his authority in issuing the directive.  However, this decision will have no immediate effect because of a temporary ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court back in December, which allows the Trump administration to fully implement the ban while it appeals a couple of earlier court injunctions against the policy.   

This is a very complex policy issue that is currently embroiled in several legal challenges. The potential impacts to our faculty and students is concerning to me as well. I am only aware of one instance so far in which a faculty member was in need of congressional intervention as they traveled to and from one of the listed countries. The university’s Office of Governmental Relations worked with one of our local congressional representatives on that case and, to date, we are not aware of any issues that have come up. Throughout the course of the year, I am in regular contact with our congressional officials discussing a variety of issues important to Fresno State. If any situations arise in the coming months that could have potential negative impacts on our faculty staff or students, my office will consult immediately with the appropriate legislative representatives to provide needed assistance. In the meantime, please know I share your concerns regarding not just this policy, but other national policies that could have serious implications to our students and staff. Thank you again for sharing your concerns. I hope you will let me know if other developments warrant my attention.


CONCERN: Execute policies in an effective manner. The non-smoking policy has no enforcement and no sanctions so smokers blatantly disregard it. The policy relies on the "community" to remind offenders about the policy. When we do this we are at best ignored and at worse attacked and insulted. These "community" members are selfish addicts who will only respond to academic sanctions or fines (their response). Faculty and students are exposed to smoke frequently, and it makes some of us physically sick yet we are expected to help students in close environments. If really want to breathe we need a better approach. Consider strongly enforcing smoke even if we allow non-smoking products for those who will not quit. As it exists, this policy is a joke (the smokers’ words and mine).

RESPONSE: Thank you for the feedback. We are enforcing the new systemwide smoking policy in the manner instructed by the Executive Order and consistent with other CSU campuses. Our primary focus is on education. Smoking and tobacco cessation programs are available for students, faculty, and staff. Your concern and support in ensuring a healthier environment is greatly appreciated. A web page has been established for individuals to report non-compliance. We have a very active campuswide Task Force that is continuing to identify opportunities for communication, and they are focused on “heat mapping” buildings and areas where individuals continue to smoke. We are monitoring accordingly. Click here for more information.


CONCERN: Most comments on your Facebook page never get a reply from Fresno State. If there is a reply, it is often 24 hours later (or more) and just the same reply being posted on every other comment. This does not inspire confidence in Fresno State at all.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your message. Fresno State is committed to being very responsive to messages and comments it receives on social media. In fact, we respond first thing in the morning, throughout the day, and during the evening. Our social media is always being monitored. As a rule, we allow people to express their opinions, even if we disagree, and only jump in to correct misinformation. This means sometimes all we can do is thank people for their comments and/or share the correct facts. Please be assured that customer service is a top priority for us, and we are always open to hearing suggestions on how to improve that.


CONCERN: You should be aware that on the Fresno State Facebook page, comments that offer a viewpoint contrary to the university's are frequently disappearing/hidden/removed. Given the recent controversy over the 1st Amendment, it is surprising that Fresno State would act this way. I hope you look into this and see that it stops. Thank you.

RESPONSE: As a publicly funded organization, Fresno State takes its commitment to upholding the First Amendment very seriously. We never delete or hide any comments on the institutional page, even ones that are off topic. In fact, there is not even a profanity filter for this reason. We do delete links to companies, since "commercialization" is allowed to be removed. We also coordinate with the many social media accounts connected to Fresno State and keep them informed that nothing is allowed to be removed. If you have a specific example of this happening on a page connected to Fresno State, please let us know, and we'll work with the administrators to make sure it doesn't happen again. Thank you.


CONCERN: Blackboard. There has been a known problem for months already, and mobile devices that connected to the latest version of blackboard CANNOT access the app.

The other issue of blackboard is trying to connect through mobile browser. The entire side panel of blackboard disappears once you go into a class. You cannot access documents if the left panel disappears. These are critical issues that NEEDS to be addressed. This is a well-known problem. Please contact even the help desk, and they will say Fresno State doesn't pay for mobile support for blackboard, so if it works then good, but if not tough luck. This is ridiculous. Why have A DiscoverE class if you are not going to support the mobile version of Blackboard.

RESPONSE: Please visit our Center for Faculty Excellence and our Academic Technology Resource Center (https://www.fresnostate.edu/academics/cfe/gethelp/bb-resource-center.html) to receive support and training on all of our Fresno State Blackboard resources, including mobile resources and the mobile app. There have been some changes to the Blackboard Mobile app over the past few years, and our support teams can help you learn about these new changes and how to best use the new app for your coursework. The example you mention with the side panel is a recent change to the mobile app experience to provide more screen space for instructors and students. The panel can be accessed with a finger swipe (mobile app) or a mouse or touchpad (desktop or laptop internet browser).


CONCERN: FS videos on YouTube have graphics that are hard to read on my iPhone. Please fix this. Thank you.

RESPONSE: The Fresno State YouTube channel includes videos produced by several entities at the University. Graphic sizes are left to the discretion of the video producers, however, all videos are fully captioned with a universal size determined by YouTube.


CONCERN: When is the University Budget Committee ever going to get around to making decisions that actually benefit faculty in their jobs and that support student success?

RESPONSE: The charge of the University Budget Committee is to “be the deliberative body of the faculty on budget and resource use as they affect the University  and including but  not  limited to instructional  budget, allocation of  faculty  positions,  allocation of space,  institutional  support  budget, the athletic  budget, facilities  planning and self­ support  programs. The Committee shall be responsible for recommending on all university budget decisions affecting instruction.” The committee met six (6) times during the Fall 2017 semester and its minutes are available on the Academic Senate website. If you have particular concerns, I encourage you to contact Dr. Robert Maldonado, who chairs the committee, or any of its members whose names are also on the senate website.


CONCERN: Does University Advancement put out the weekly e-newsletter? It certainly looks like it, because they give themselves priority on initiatives and announcements.

RESPONSE: Yes, University Advancement distributes, Campus News, the weekly campus e-newsletter and makes an effort to highlight all areas of campus. Any campus entity is able to submit announcements for the e-newsletter, and we welcome your content. Please e-mail April Schulthies at aprils@csufresno.edu. All information must be submitted by Friday at noon for the following week’s e-newsletter.


CONCERN: Your day of giving fund-raiser is completely tasteless. 24 hours of begging for money by saying that we have to feed the dog. Way to bring higher education to a new all-time low.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your feedback. While this was Fresno State’s first-ever Day of Giving fundraiser, this campaign model dates back to the CASE Foundation’s America’s Giving Challenge in 2007. Giving days have since been used by several universities and higher education institutions across the country. The focus of the campaign was on donors, not dollars, and it aimed to bring together the greater Bulldog community around pride for Fresno State. 


CONCERN: Over the last several years, it has been very encouraging to see how the faculty and administration cares for its students no matter what road has brought them to campus. Every person who comes to our campus has been treated with open arms and an uplifting spirit recognizing that we are all equal. We look to support everyone equally, and I think that is one of Fresno State's core strengths. We have seen steps taken to improve gender neutrality in restrooms on campus. This leads me to feel that all sexes will be treated equally. Faculty and staff were recently encouraged the 2017 Central California Women's Conference. It was a very encouraging and uplifting conference. It is my understanding that some departments funded the day for its faculty and staff to attend. How are the men on campus going to be supported in a similar fashion? What funds are being set aside to do the same for men on Fresno State's campus who would like to attend similar conferences? What about those who identify as non-cis normative?

RESPONSE: The Central California Women's Conference is open to anyone to attend, not just women. Campus departments may support attendance of faculty and staff at this conference or others with funding for registration fees through their departmental budget. If there are other off-campus professional development opportunities that you have an interest in attending, we recommend working with your immediate supervisor/MPP. In addition, the campus offers a wide array of trainings and programs for faculty and staff through Organizational Excellence and the Center for Faculty Excellence.


CONCERN: The Academic Testing Center (ATC) that hosts make-up tests for students changed its name over the summer, it seems. In doing so, the ATC website was shut down. There was no link or redirect to the newly named Bulldog Testing Center from the old ATC site to enable faculty to find out fall hours or other information. Also, at the start of the semester, the Fresno State google search did not pull up any links for ATC.

Beyond the name change, there were also unannounced protocol changes made to testing center over the summer requiring faculty to turn in assessments further in advance than in the past. While having deadlines is entirely understandable, it marks a significant change in procedure for the testing center.

It is very confusing why the university did not think to inform faculty of these changes. Also, important university web pages that faculty rely on to do their job that change need to link to the new page, or provide information on the changes underway.

It would be very helpful to have someone in charge of faculty communications involved in overseeing such changes in the future. Thank you.

RESPONSE: In February 2017, Testing Services underwent a major transformation and was split into two different centers. The Academic Testing Center (ATC) became the Bulldog Testing Center (BTC) and is now housed under Academic Affairs. The BTC continues to provide services for on-campus students to take full class and make-up examinations, academic assessments, the Constitution Exam, and the Calculus Readiness Test (CRT). The Office of Testing Services became Professional Examination Services and continues to be housed under Student Affairs. During this transition, new websites were created, which necessitated shutting down the existing website for a brief period while the new websites went live. A Faculty Advisory Board was created with representatives from each of the Colleges to ensure effective communication. In Fall 2017, updated information regarding the BTC was disseminated through the usual faculty channels. You may contact Bernadette Muscat with any questions or comments. 


CONCERN: As a non-Hispanic minority staff member, I hope you will explain some of your recent statements regarding diversity on this campus. You have recently written that Fresno State is "one of the most diverse universities in the nation" and that Fresno State is "more diverse...than at any time in its 107-year history". I don't believe that either statement is true.

Fresno State does not appear on any list of 'most diverse universities' in the country. Fresno State's own statistics show that this campus is actually less diverse than it was five years ago. The percentages of African American, Asian, Pacific Islander and White students in the student body have all decreased over that time period and the percentage of American Indian and multi-race students have remained unchanged. Repeatedly stating that this campus is 'very diverse' or 'more diverse' does not make it true.

If you are using the term 'diversity' to mean 'less white', which seems to be the new definition of 'diversity', I suppose your statements are accurate. If you are truly interested in seeing a wide representation of all ethnicities and racial groups, please explain how your claims of increased diversity are supported by the university's enrollment figures. I am interested in what you plan to do to ensure that currently 'underrepresented' groups are recruited and welcomed by this university to achieve the goal of developing a truly diverse student body.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your perspective with me. Diversity is one of the campus’ three institutional values, along with Distinction and Discovery. When I speak of diversity, I focus on the richness and broadness of it as we engage in our mission to boldly educate and empower students for success. Fresno State serves students from a wide range of income levels, ethnic and racial groups, and from communities throughout the Central Valley and beyond. It is a pride point for the university that we are both a Hispanic-Serving and an Asian American Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institution because few universities in the nation have this dual federal-designation. Increases in the Hispanic student population at Fresno State have occurred because of demographic changes in the Central Valley and throughout California. Also, the number of new African American students increased significantly this year, which is a very positive development. Our campus’s diversity is represented by the talents, backgrounds and perspectives of our students, faculty and staff. This is a significant asset as we prepare the next generation of leaders for our nation and world.


CONCERN: We have come up against the classroom renovation program trying to take funds that were earned by each department to supplement what little we get for our general fund each year. These funds are used for student conference attendance, planning fundraisers, deposit accounts for students’ fees to pay for their trips, to continue to support self-sustaining programs and many more things that we just do not receive the funding for otherwise. We have not had a department budget increase in over 7 years even though our department has grown substantially over this time. Taking these funds because someone in an office that never has anything to with the activities and opportunities afforded our students by this money is presumptuous and not helping our students in the long run. Having to justify this over and over again (we've literally done this 4 times in the last 6 months, the first time taking over 2 weeks to gather all the data) is an inefficient use of our time. Our classrooms desperately need renovations, but there are more appropriate avenues to fund this, say not throwing extravagant catered meal meetings so often. Or taking the time to research outside grant funding if we are going to be transparent about it. Our departments get very little money as it is, please do not take what little we manage to scrape up for ourselves.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. Please know that the investment in modernizing our aged classrooms will not reduce or take away budget allocations that support our academic departments. The fund source for both phases of these critical facility improvement projects is from campus and Academic Affairs reserves (not from student fees ​or self​-support programs). 


CONCERN: The carpool program is a great idea, however, the majority of the time both carpoolers do not work in the same building and cannot exit the vehicle together. Therefore, the incentive for us to carpool together does not work because we end up parking in the regular parking lot due to lack of carpool lots or we do not use the carpool program at all.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback and for supporting our carpool program. Asking carpool partners to arrive and park together is currently our only means to verify compliance. We are in the process of evaluating the carpool program to look for more efficient verification methods. If you have specific suggestions, please send them to our Parking and Transportation Manager, Derek Brantley. We recognize we have an opportunity to improve our current program.


CONCERN: The bookstore should offer more things, from clothing to cups to key rings and everything across the board, which do not have a bulldog on them, in word and picture. The mascot is fun and important for branding. But I have found shopping difficult when looking for just Fresno State or for the seal on objects.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. If you have any specific requests or would like to place a custom order, please contact Kim Spencer at the Kennel Bookstore at kspencer@csufresno.edu


 

POSTED ON 09/14/17

CONCERN: Two suggestions for improvements to make Fresno State even better are (1) putting a system in place so students are able to receive graded assignments back in a timely manner and (2) making it to where final grades are shown as percentages and not as letter grades.

If professors had to abide by something in the syllabus, making it to where they would have to hand back graded assignments by a reasonable time frame, this would help students with subsequent assignments. It would subsequently help, because they now are able to see how the professor grades, and use their feedback to improve upon their writing.

Next, there is how final grades look, which are represented sometimes as just letter grades, and as far as I have seen, with pluses and minuses also. Instead, showing the actual percentage for final grades is a better option. After all, why should a student just have a B as a letter grade, if they actually received closer to an 88%, but it still just shows up as a B. Sure that is why the pluses and minuses are for, but some professors do not enter final grades like that. The solution needs to be uniform across campus, with either professors entering grades with pluses or minuses, or just with the actual percentages. "

RESPONSE: Recognizing that timely feedback is important to effective learning, faculty strive to turn around graded assignments as quickly as possible. The type of assignment determines the length of time it takes to effectively evaluate an assignment and provide feedback. Faculty can use the grading scale they find most appropriate for a given assignment. End of term grades must adhere to the university grading standard which requires letter grades (no pluses or minuses and no percentages).


CONCERN: I am concerned that Professor Thatcher is not facing disciplinary action for illegally harassing students and attempting to censor their free speech. Taking no steps to address this professor's behavior sends the message to students that they are not protected or supported by their campus administration, despite what the U.S. Constitution has to say. Anti-free speech attitudes and behaviors espoused on college campuses are a disturbing trend. What measures will Fresno State be taking in regards to Gregory Thatcher?

RESPONSE: This personnel matter is under review. Any steps taken after the review is complete will be consistent with campus and CSU system policies, the CSU Collective Bargaining Agreement with the California Faculty Association, and the First Amendment Rights of all who were involved.


CONCERN: "I strongly urge you to move ahead with appointing one of the four professors your search team identified. Do not give in to pressure from right-wing and/or Pro-Israel extremists who consider all Palestinians as ""terrorists."

On our campus, Professor Rabab Abudlhadi has been threatened and slandered with vicious posters and dishonest criticism by the same people who are attacking the Edward Said candidates.

Many of these critics are Jewish, but they do not speak for the Jewish community. My organization Jewish Voice for Peace, supports academic freedom and equal rights for Palestinian students and faculty. That is the way to peace, progress, and Justice in Israel/Palestine and in California. "

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your opinion with me. I assure you that no campus official was under pressure from any individual or group to cancel the search for this position which was conducted last year. That search was cancelled because it did not follow our campus' policies and procedures. We have learned lessons from this experience so this does not happen again during future faculty searches. A new search for this important faculty position will be conducted during the upcoming academic year. Those who applied for the position last year are encouraged to apply again.


CONCERN: "The President should join the more than 80 Universities across the countries who have committed to making the Paris Climate agreement a reality, despite the foolish withdrawal from the agreement by the White House. Will President Castro commit Fresno State? http://secondnature.org/grand-coalition-statement-paris-agreement/"

RESPONSE: CSU Chancellor Tim White, on behalf of the 23 campuses, has endorsed the "We Are Still In" campaign. This campaign focuses on the importances of fighting climate change and supporting environmental sustainability. I support this effort.


COMMENTS RE: MAISCHACK TERMINATION (Administration)

RESPONSE: Thank you for expressing your concerns. Dr. Lars Maischak, Fresno State History lecturer, will not be teaching this fall. In accordance with California State University, Fresno’s contractual obligation, Dr. Maischak has been assigned to convert two courses to an online format which meets his unit requirement per the faculty collective bargaining unit agreement. These courses will adhere to California State University’s Quality of Online Learning and Teaching Standards. This assignment ends in December 2017, while his contract runs through May 2018.


CONCERN: I didn't receive the alumni magazine this month. Does Fresno State even put out an alumni magazine anymore?

RESPONSE: The Fresno State Magazine is mailed two times per academic year. The magazine is annually mailed in November and in the spring. This year we tested sending the magazine in June to capitalize on graduation and to celebrate student success. Thank you for noticing the delay. That must mean that you find the magazine of value. Unfortunately, the timeline between graduation and sending the magazine was tighter than expected so the opportunity to share in-depth student success stories was not fully realized. The University Communications team is revisiting the timing of these two mailings. If you are not consistently receiving the magazine, please call 278.2795.


CONCERN: Why can’t the Alumni House put out their Fresno State magazine on time? It’s really a testament to incompetence.

RESPONSE: The Fresno State Magazine has consistently been sent in November and April for years. In FY 16/17, University Communications tested sending the magazine in June instead of April to capitalize on graduation and to celebrate student success. Thank you for noticing the delay. That must mean that you find the magazine of value. Unfortunately, the timeline between graduation and sending the magazine was tighter than expected so the opportunity to share in-depth student success stories was not fully realized. The University Communications team is revisiting the timing of these two mailings for this academic year. 


 

POSTED ON 06/15/17

CONCERN: (5 similar) Professor Thatcher should be severely reprimanded for his actions regarding the pro-life chalk incident. He should be terminated. It would be a chance for Fresno State to make a statement so profound that Free Speech includes all opinions, races, creeds and beliefs.

RESPONSE: We are conducting an investigation of this serious matter and will determine what steps are appropriate according to CSU system and campus policies.

With respect to the larger issue of free speech, the campus has made it clear that the students who were chalking messages during this incident were fully within their free speech rights to do so. As President, I will continue to speak publicly about the importance of free speech and our campus actions in this area will be continue to be consistent with the First Amendment.


CONCERN: Increasing diversity on campus has, in my opinion, hurt the university. A few years ago, an email was sent out explaining that President Castro was going to intentionally admit more Hispanic students to better represent the population of Fresno, which doesn't make it more diverse ... it makes the school a majority Hispanic. Also in doing this, he denied admission to people of other ethnic origins to meet his agenda. People should get into college based upon abilities, not color of their skin or the language they speak.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your note. Fresno State is one of the most diverse universities in the nation. This is a pride point for our university because the next generation of leaders should reflect the overall diversity of our region and state. It is also vitally important that our students listen to and learn from each other as they shape their own perspectives about issues.

Fresno State admits its students based on academic preparation, including grade point average and standardized test scores. The ethnicity or race of a student is not considered in admission to Fresno State. It is true that the number of Latino students has increased, but that can be attributed to the growing number of Latino students graduating from high schools and community colleges who meet our campus' admissions requirements. In fact, this has happened while Fresno State has increased its admissions standards to the highest in its 106-year history. The great news for the Central Valley is that students from all backgrounds are coming to us with stronger academic preparation than ever before and they are graduating with a high quality education faster than ever.

On my first day in office in August 2013, I promised to be President for everyone. I will continue to serve every student from all backgrounds in the same way through my final day as President.


CONCERN: (3 similar) I was disappointed with the President's message about making Fresno State -- including sports arenas, Save Mart Center, Auxiliary -- a total smoke-free campus. It is just one more right that is being taken away from someone. Smoking on campus should not be abolished. Instead, a single designated smoking area should be placed in a low-traffic area on campus.

You said in Campus News from May 8, 2017: “I believe this change in (smoking) policy will result in a healthier campus environment for all.” I suggest to be more consistent you should remove from campus all vending machines because we all know that sugar kills as much as nicotine. Additionally you can ban from campus all junk food and serve for lunch only fruits and vegetables.

RESPONSE: I understand your concern. Chancellor White recently established a CSU system-wide policy that prohibits smoking in all CSU facilities, including those at Fresno State. I support this new policy because of the significant negative impact that smoking has on others near the person who is smoking, especially young children and the elderly. I support a healthy campus environment for everyone. This fall, a campus task force will make recommendations to me regarding the most effective way to implement this new policy. Please stay tuned for more details.


CONCERN: The Summer Arts program appears to have reserved the main South Gym (SG 109) exclusively for 23 consecutive days in July (July 5-27). During that time, no other groups will be able to use the gym. Can the Summer Arts Program use the gym in a way that will allow other groups to have some access to the gym? Or can they move their activity to a more appropriate location?

RESPONSE: The top priority for rooms during the summer is given to Continuing and Global Education summer-session courses that bear university credits and to Summer Arts courses hosted on campus. Under an MOU signed by the Chancellor and President Castro, specific spaces are allocated to Summer Arts. Because of major construction in both North and South Gyms this summer, the space guaranteed to Summer Arts is not available. The campus department to which SG 109 is assigned (Kinesiology) worked out an alternative for Summer Arts to use this space knowing that no one else could use it because of the extensive use by Summer Arts students and faculty We anticipate that this is a one-time room change due to construction, and next summer we will return to the normal schedule for this space.


CONCERN: Managers should encourage employees to take breaks. Sometimes I feel like I can't take a break because no one else is doing it and breaks are not talked about in the office. I want to know that it is not frowned upon to take 15-minute breaks twice a day.

RESPONSE: We will be sure to remind managers about encouraging staff to take their breaks. It is important to have the opportunity to step away from your work during the work day. If you have more specific policy related questions, please feel free to contact university Human Resources at 559. 278.2032. Specific concerns or ideas should also be discussed directly with your supervisor/manager


 

POSTED ON 05/08/17

CONCERN (by 141 writers): Lars Maischak should be immediately dismissed from Fresno State and not allowed to teach or lecture in the California education again, permanently. His comments on his Twitter account about Trump are a complete disgrace and totally unacceptable.

RESPONSE: I understand your concern. Dr. Maischak's comments on his Twitter account do not in any way reflect the values of our university. We have cooperated fully with all law enforcement authorities. This matter is under review by the university. While the review continues, Dr. Maischak has received, at his request and in accordance to the collective bargaining agreement with the California Faculty Association (CFA), a paid leave of absence for the duration of the Spring 2017 semester while he conducts research off campus in his field of study.  Dr. Maischak currently has a contract with the university to be a lecturer through the 2017-18 academic year.  As a lecturer, he is represented by the CFA.

I have urged a continued campus-wide discussion about what is and what is not free speech and what are appropriate uses of social media by students, faculty, staff, and administrators.


CONCERN: I recently read a response from the chancellor about immigration law. I was disappointed in your response. I have read the chancellor’s letter carefully and as far as I can understand, the chancellor indeed won't allow CSUs to follow federal law regarding people who are not here legally. There are laws in this country for a reason and just because the chancellor doesn't like the law doesn't mean you can just not follow the law.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern.  I assure you that the Chancellor and I agree that Fresno State will continue to follow the law as it relates to immigration and other areas.  Our statements on immigration make it clear that we will do all that we can within the law to support the success of all Fresno State students.  I am President for all Fresno State students and will remain committed to this guiding principle throughout my service at the university.


CONCERN: Instead of having a "sanctuary school," why doesn't Fresno State offer classes so that illegal immigrants can become U.S. citizens? Wouldn't that be more helpful to all?

RESPONSE: Fresno State is not a "sanctuary school."  Our mission is to "boldly educate and empower students for success."  We will continue to support the success of all Fresno State students while we follow the law as it relates to immigration and other areas.

Through our Maddy Institute, Fresno State has proudly sponsored a Citizenship Academy as well as ceremonies for newly naturalized United States citizens. For more information about this program, please see http://www.maddyinstitute.com/citizen-participation/citizenship-academy/.


CONCERN: I've heard that my management gave gifts for a new staff member similar to my classification. It would be nice to see consistency with that because now I am feeling like I wasn't good enough to receive anything.

RESPONSE: We believe on-boarding of new faculty and staff is important and we have a Creativity and Innovation for Excellence (CAIFE) Team that is charged with reviewing and recommending improvements to Fresno State's on boarding process. The goal is to develop a consistent “Welcome to Fresno State” experience. One element of that program that is being considered is providing a welcome basket for new employees from the Kennel Bookstore. Some managers have begun to pilot this idea for recent new hires. The plan is to formalize this in the near future so all new employees will receive a welcome basket on their first day of work on campus.


CONCERN: Over the last semester, I am afraid that there is not a clear vision for the tablet program. Some of my professors said they were frustrated because they were not properly trained on how to use them for class and they reverted to using textbooks and handouts. My professors also said it was too hard to teach when students have different devices in the classroom… it is like us all having different textbooks. I heard there was a decision to go with one hardware but not sure what happened to that.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. We value your feedback, as we are continuously improving the DISCOVERe program. All faculty members who are part of the DISCOVERe mobile technology program have access to ongoing professional development opportunities through the Center for Faculty Excellence. The center utilizes a support team of instructional designers, DISCOVERe faculty fellows and experts in course redesign with technology. The campus DISCOVERe committee, which includes students and faculty, continues to explore ways to enhance and expand the support available to faculty members. Also, all faculty members have access to our Academic Technology Resource Center that provides direct support to faculty members committed to uploading accessible and affordable course materials into Blackboard, our campus learning management system.


CONCERN: I am in the library quite often and I love doing my school work at the DISCOVERe Hub. I have gotten help many times from the guides there. They provide a level of customer service that I do not get very often from many businesses, or even different areas of campus; it is truly an enjoyable experience. However, I have learned recently that one of the guides that often helped me graduated and no longer works there. I asked a few more questions and found out that no matter how good and professional they are, there are no positions above the student position. I have friends that have had student positions on campus and get part/full time positions after graduation. Why doesn't the DISCOVERe Hub offer that?

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback and praise about a DISCOVERe guide and the positive experiences you received at the Hub. Our DISCOVERe Hub is part of our overall Technology Services division, which offers temporary and permanent positions, based on the needs of the division. Technology Services has hired a number of recent Fresno State graduates over the past couple of years.


CONCERN: Regarding the Workplace Quality Survey, it was described as an anonymous survey, but some of the questions at the end certainly could be used to determine who submitted it. I hope this information will be handled with tact and discretion, especially if honesty is valued in future surveys. Thank you for your continued consideration of all employees.

RESPONSE: The Workplace Quality Survey was confidential. We selected ModernThink, a neutral third party, to administer the survey and assist with maintaining the anonymity of employee responses. ModernThink will analyze the survey results for factors such as key themes, patterns and trends. Fresno State will not be given any information that would enable us to trace answers back to a specific person - even if they are part of a small demographic group. All feedback will certainly be handled with tact and discretion and will be used to help improve our workplace. Watch for open forums next fall where we will share the overall results of the survey.


CONCERN: Why do we allow non-exempt employees to "skip lunches" to make up time? Employees who are continually late for work (10-15 minutes daily) and do not have vacation time seem to feel that they can just skip their lunch two or three times a week to make up time they are away from the office on personal appointments. I don't understand it nor do I feel that it's fair to those of use that are here on time and use our sick leave and vacation to cover our time away. Why are managers so afraid to address such behavior?

RESPONSE: Please refer any employment policy related questions to Human Resources, 278.2032. Specific concerns can also be discussed with your supervisor/manager.


CONCERN: It would be great if President Castro could provide leadership training to deans, chairs and any staff who oversee other employees. I really appreciate the leadership that Dr. Castro provides; however, when our immediate supervisors are not leading their staff in the same positive manner, it creates bad morale within a department, school, office, etc. More training for our leaders is essential in keeping staff happy with their positions.

RESPONSE: Over the past two years, we have made significant efforts to increase and improve training and development opportunities for all employees. We have focused particular attention to the need for more training for managers, supervisors and department chairs and have invested significantly to increase the number and type of trainings as well as other technical HR resources. Over the past 18 months we have delivered dedicated sessions for managers on the following topics: leading and sustaining change; courage, vulnerability and resilience; human resource nuts and bolts; leadership interventions; unconscious bias; generational diversity; managing difficult conversations; collegiality; conflict resolution; and systems awareness. We are planning a two-day Principles of Supervision Workshop this summer and will repeat this session next fall and spring. We are also in the process of developing a new leadership development program, which will launch in fall 2017.


 

POSTED ON 03/30/17

CONCERN: There is a need for signs to inform students that in order for you to use an individual study room in the Library, you need to reserve it. Hang it on each door. It is tiring when you reserve the room only to find rude people occupying it.

RESPONSE: Library Administration was unaware that this was a problem but will certainly consider providing additional signage in the study rooms. We appreciate your feedback. 


CONCERN: I am disappointed that the testing center is not coming back. With the new system there is no way to have a whole class take an exam. This was a very valuable resource. I caught a student cheating this semester and I am sure he was one of many. The testing center was great at eliminating cheating.

RESPONSE:  Thank you for sharing your concern with me. I suggest that you speak with your department chair and dean to identify strategies to provide support to you during exams in classrooms.


CONCERN: Can the graduation information such as times of the individual college ceremonies and the specific requirements such as ticket limits and walk through procedures be posted at the beginning of the semester?

RESPONSE: Information about college/school/affinity ceremonies is announced as soon as the schedule is finalized. This usually happens during early February to assure the information is accurate.


CONCERN: I am irritated with this way of voicing concern. I may not get my concern addressed. And even if I do, I will have to continually come back to this site to see if someone answered my concern. This does not seem to be an effective way to voice concerns. We should be able to email President Castro directly. Even if that means an assistant reads and responds to his email. I would like a response back and not have to waste my valuable time coming back to this site to see if my concern has been addressed.

RESPONSE: Thank you. I send an email to all faculty, staff and students when new Feedback is posted, approximately every six to eight weeks. In addition, you may email me via the “Email Us” link in the footer of my webpage.


CONCERN: Stick to education for students, not trying to corrupt them.

RESPONSE: Fresno State's mission is "To boldly educate and empower students for success." Our actions will continue to be consistent with our mission and values.


CONCERN: Discovery, DIVERSITY, Distinction. If we are to value diversity it should be in all areas of this institution.

RESPONSE:  I agree. If you have suggestions for how we can be more effective in this area, please share them with us.


CONCERN: I'm concerned with my workplace environment. I just heard something unsettling. As I passed by a Hispanic student on his cell phone, I overheard him very loudly say, "Yeah, white people are stupid," followed by a chuckle. How am I supposed to take this as a staff member? It is not my job to instruct students on etiquette and behavior but I was considerably offended by this remark. This kind of thinking is not something I would welcome or should be exposed in the workplace. I like to think that Fresno State is a diverse and inclusive environment. Should we not expect the same from all students?

RESPONSE: The behavior that you describe by this student is concerning and unacceptable.As a campus community, I believe it is important for us to share our concerns with each other in a respectful way.Our role as faculty and staff is to provide guidance to our students as they prepare to be the next generation of leaders in our Valley and beyond.


CONCERN: The link below is to a petition opposing the recent Executive Order by U.S. President Trump limiting entry into the United States for nationals of seven majority-Muslim countries. The petition specifically highlights the likely effects on academic communities, while also pointing out the ways in which we are connected to other worldwide communities, both large and small. If you agree, sign this petition. https://notoimmigrationban.com/

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing this with us. I expressed my view on the recent Executive Order. You may view it here.


CONCERN: President Castro, please tell me that you did not call President Trump’s moratorium on immigration from seven countries a ban on Muslims. It is not a ban on Muslims or the Muslim religion. It is a temporary ban from the countries that former President Obama's own people listed as terrorist supporters. It is the duty of every university president to uphold the laws of the land regardless of whether or not you support that specific law. If you tell me that you or Fresno State will become a sanctuary university, then I and many others will be leaving the Red Wave and will not support any university activities.

RESPONSE: As University president, I am obligated to uphold the laws of our state and nation.I stand with and support every student, faculty, and staff member at Fresno State.Our mission is "to boldly educate and empower students for success."Our actions will continue to be consistent with our mission and values.


CONCERN: I do not believe you have the right to make the Fresno State campus a "sanctuary university" for undocumented students. You are to assist law enforcement and follow the law. You do not help education or the community by making this unlawful stand. Students who commit crimes should be held accountable. Your job as an educator is to facilitate learning.

RESPONSE: As University president, I am obligated to uphold the laws of our state and nation. I stand with and support every student, faculty, and staff member at Fresno State. Our mission is "to boldly educate and empower students for success." Our actions will continue to be consistent with our mission and values. We have recently sponsored campus forums on free speech and civil rights for our students, faculty and staff. Additional forums will take place in the future.


CONCERN: When the women’s basketball team goes out of state to play a game, who pays for the Learjet that is provided for them? Do all sports teams have the opportunity to use a Learjet for out-of-state games? Who pays for their jet?

RESPONSE: First and foremost, we do our best to schedule team travel around two factors: team safety and the least amount of lost time in the classroom. Our women’s basketball program did travel twice this season via charter plane. These two trips were paid for with philanthropic dollars. We have several donors who feel that keeping student-athletes in class as much as possible helps the overall experience for our team. The rest of the travel is within the team’s normal travel budget and includes commercial flights and bus trips.


CONCERN: I have the Health Care Reimbursement account that I contribute to along with the ASI Flex Benefits card. My account shows that I have signed up for a Dependent Care Account, even though my paperwork shows that I signed up for the Health Care account. On 1/19/17 I called HR and was told this happened to several employees and that they have no idea when this will be corrected. As of today 1/25/17 it still has not been corrected. Obviously HR knew of this error, why did they not notify the affected employees?

RESPONSE: We apologize for the inconvenience and the miscommunication. This error occurred at the State Controller’s Office, not by the University, and has since been reversed and corrected. If you continue to experience issues with this matter, please contact Juanita Aguilar, benefits manager, at 278.5336.


 

POSTED ON 02/09/17

CONCERN: I am disgusted to work for a university with a Chancellor who clearly stated in his open letter that he will require CSU employees to violate federal law. He stated that the CSU will defy federal immigration holds, holds that are intended for people who should be deported due to criminal history.What part of "law enforcement" does the Chancellor not understand?

RESPONSE:Thank you for sharing your concern with me.You have misinterpreted the Chancellor's open letter.He does not require CSU employees to violate federal law.In fact, his messages have been clear that we are to follow the law while focusing on the safety of all students.


CONCERN: I have specified a substantial charitable gift in my trust that is to be given to California State University - Fresno, Ornamental Horticulture Department. Although it is not necessary to notify you, I have looked at the University website to try to locate an office for Legacy or Planned Giving, but have not found one. I am certain that many fellow alumni are similarly interested in planned giving, and it would be assuring to have an easy point of contact through a Development / Legacy / Planned Giving Department or similar.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion and your legacy gift to the Ornamental Horticulture Department. I know the department will be delighted to receive your generosity in the future. As you may know, many donors choose to notify us of their estate plans to ensure that we can fulfill their gift intentions. That assurance is a relief to donors and to Fresno State. To learn more, please go to our planned giving site at: https://fresnostate.giftlegacy.com/or call Liz Garvin, director of Planned Giving, at 278.4038. She is a wonderful resource and confidential partner in helping you fulfill your dreams.


CONCERN: Responding to the feedback and response on 1/4/17 requesting the return of printed catalogs: I understand that it's impractical to print catalogs, but would it be possible to improve the PDF versions? Since the changeover to the catalog website, the newer PDF archived catalogs appear to just be compilations of text from the catalog website with minimal organization, no academic calendar, no table of contents, etc. It's very difficult to use or reference these archives when they have no organization. A better-curated PDF that uses the structure of the older, printed versions would be a great help.

RESPONSE: Our online catalog allows real-time updates and corrections. It benefits students by providing the latest information on new courses and new programs which a print catalog is not able to provide. However, we realize that a PDF or print catalog still has its value. We have plans to produce a user-friendly PDF catalog (like an old print catalog) each May when the online catalog publishes its annual edition. We will also arrange with a printing service to provide bound copies of the catalog for customers who prefer a print copy (with a fee for printing and shipping).


CONCERN: In the summer months and during intersession, the university could possibly save money byshutting campus down an additional day. There is no need to cool or heat all of the campus for such a small percentage of students on campus. This would be a model for CSU-wide adoption, energy and cost savings. Full time employees could move to four days a week (M-Th) at 10 hours per day. Save energy, give employees an additional day off and save the state some money.

RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion. We always appreciate hearing about ideas that could further our commitment to energy savings and sustainability. Some CSU campuses do operate on such a schedule during the summer months; however, availability of student services needs to be taken into consideration. In addition, changing work hours will require consultation with the bargaining units.


CONCERN: Information about alleged nepotism.

RESPONSE: Thank you. We will look into the information you provided.


CONCERN: The room scheduling system is an excellent resource with the pictures of rooms, intuitive design, etc. However, a huge flaw is that the system allows the booking of rooms we can't actually book – for example Library rooms and North Gym. It would be appreciated and more efficient if rooms are listed for when they are actually available, with their stipulations built in to that time frame.

RESPONSE: The availability of reservable rooms is easily accessible on 25Live and can be accessed without even signing in. Navigate to 25Live and click on the “Availability” tab on the far right side of the page. (https://25live.collegenet.com/csufresno/#home_availability[4]]). For details about a particular room, including restrictions on use of the space, users will need to sign in using their Fresno State credentials and click on the room in question. For additional help please contact any department scheduling staff, as they have been trained in the use of 25Live.

Per established protocol, spaces in the Henry Madden Library are managed by the Library staff. The North Gym 118 is not currently set up to be reserved by student organizations or off-campus groups, as a chargeback is incurred for set-up services and the use of an AV technician when required. Student organizations on campus are required to submit their event requests through Student Involvement, to allow for verification of the student organization requesting the use of a space on campus.


 

POSTED ON 01/04/17

CONCERN: Commit to full transparency by the Fresno State Foundation. The response to the previous questioner about the Fresno State Foundation appeared to have avoided the actual questions in the initial feedback. Who are these people entrusted with all that money, why should we trust them and where is the money invested? Doesn't the community have a right to know--especially contributors? Why is only a portion of the fund in socially responsible funds? Also, hasn't Goldman Sachs been found to have a record of questionable investment policies? How can a member of the Fresno State community find out where and how all of the $126 million is invested?

RESPONSE: The Fresno State Foundation manages approximately $126 million of endowed assets. Our 33-person board of governors includes 32 community members who have experience in various industry sectors and bring a diverse perspective and business experience to the board. The endowment has oversight by an Investment Committee and the Foundation’s Investment Advisor is Goldman Sachs, which was selected through a competitive process. Most recently the Foundation updated its Investment Policy Statement (IPS) to include a new ESG fund. In addition, the board recently approved investing up to $3 million from an existing target allocation for Private Equity into an Impact Private Equity Managers fund. University officials attended a workshop hosted by the Intentional Endowments Network along with other CSU and UC colleagues and the progress that our Foundation has made in these areas is definitely in line or ahead of other higher education institutional foundations. For more information on the Fresno State Foundation, a list of the Board of Governors, the Foundation policies, Annual report and Audited Financial Statements please visit the Foundation website.


CONCERN: As a parent, I'm a little concerned hearing that an email was sent to students following the election. I would hope Fresno State is presenting sound choices to the students for them to make their own intelligent decisions, and that Fresno State is not trying to shape the young minds to a certain administrator’s ways of thinking.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. I assure you that Fresno State does not take a position on elections. Our campus embraces free speech from all perspectives. I wrote our students after the national election because some of them were experiencing stress and fear due to comments made during a heated campaign. Many of our undocumented students and Muslim students have expressed concerns to me personally. I want all of our students, including your son or daughter, to know that we have counseling services available throughout the year - whenever.


CONCERN: President Castro has drafted an excellent letter in responding to the election: "At Fresno State, we value diversity of thought and are committed to fostering an inclusive climate where everyone and every voice matters." I think an important index of the diversity of thought is what percentage of faculty and staff voted for one particular party or ideology. If over 75% of our members are voting one way or another, like many elite universities did in this election, we need to think hard about the effectiveness of our so-called diversity.

REPONSE: I agree with you that a public university, like Fresno State, must support freedom of speech. We hire our faculty and staff based on their educational background and professional experiences. Their political views are not considered in our hiring process. We are fortunate to recruit talented faculty and staff from throughout the nation and world.


CONCERN: Have you considered allowing staff to work summer hours (7 a.m. to 3:30 or 4 p.m.) during school recesses, such as Thanksgiving break, spring break and Christmas break? It seems like it would make sense, and give us all a break!

RESPONSE: Thank you for the idea! I will discuss it with the Cabinet.


 

CLASSES/COURSES

POSTED ON 09/19/18

CONCERN: Can Training Enrollment In PeopleSoft be linked to Google Calendar once an individual signs up for a course? This would be very help to remember what course you sign up for and a time saver!

RESPONSE: Thank you for that suggestion. We are excited to share that in October we will be launching a new employee learning portal, CSU Learn, which will be our one-stop for compliance, online and on-campus training. This will replace Peoplesoft, which is currently used for training registration. Watch for more information on this in the coming weeks.

We are not certain at this time whether we will be able to link registrations immediately to your Google Calendar, but we will work towards that goal. In the meantime, if you register for a class through People Soft, you can add to your Google calendar by clicking hereselect the class, and copy to “my calendar” to have the class time copied to your Google calendar.

Please call Organizational Excellence at 278.5330 if you have any questions. 


CONCERN: If Fresno State is starting to require every student to create an academic plan through MyDegreePlan then there need to be steps taken to make sure the software actually works. The system will sometimes crash over five times in a row when even trying to edit a plan, and then will crash again when the verify button is pushed. Also, a number of the unit totals for courses are wrong as it seems to default to the "max" amount of units (e.g. CRIM 131, a 1 unit course, defaults to 3 units)

RESPONSE: The My Degree Plan and Degree Progress Report tools are supplied by nationally-known vendors and are used by many other higher-education campuses in the CSU and in North America. The tools have been used to create more than 10,000 plans since the beginning of 2018, and continues to be used heavily to help students create plans and roadmaps with a clear path to graduation.

With regards to the issue you have observed with CRIM 131, we understand this to be a known limitation with courses that are offered with variable units, and we recommend that you build individual sections for schedule of classes a few semesters in advance. If you continue to have issues using the systems, please do not hesitate to reach out to the Office of the University Registrar at 278.2191.


CONCERN: Can you have someone look over the catalog descriptions or encourage departments to proofread their own courses? There are a number of simple typos in the course descriptions (e.g. ASAM 138 has at least five), and simply copying and pasting them into a word processor shows a bunch of red lines for errors.

RESPONSE: Thank you for identifying these problems. The ones you pointed out in ASAM 138 have been corrected:  http://www.fresnostate.edu/catalog/search/index.html?search=asam+138&x=0&y=0 and the department is reviewing the rest of their courses. Departments proof catalog copy annually.


POSTED ON 06/20/18

CONCERN: As a Kines major and someone who is in the south gym for a majority of my day, I believe adding an EzH20 dispenser would benefit everyone who comes to the south gym. There are various amounts of activity classes that take place including kickboxing, karate, basketball, dance, and volleyball that all students who participate would benefit from being able to easily obtain water. If the water lines running through the building permits installation them it is understandable. Just something I believe would help the area tremendously.

RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion.  We will review the feasibility of adding a water- filtration station as part of the North Gym/South Gym Modernization project.


CONCERN: I noticed that the Calculus 3 classes for Fall 2018 are all four-day-a-week classes. This is particularly stressful for commuting students such as myself. Is it possible that Fresno State could arrange maybe a three-day-a-week schedule for some of these classes instead?

RESPONSE:  The mathematics department has studied student success and found that the amount and technical nature of the material in all calculus courses make it difficult for students to grasp in a three-day per week schedule.  The four-day schedule allows the material to be broken into smaller parts so that students can concentrate better on learning without feeling rushed. In fact, the new calculus redesign is extending time on task by including a lab component for Calculus I and II.  Since MATH75, 76 and 77 are lower-division classes, commuting students can take calculus in nearby community colleges and transfer those to Fresno State.  This may be the best option for you.


 

POSTED ON 04/30/18

CONCERN: As a student, I have felt that quite a few of my courses have not offered me interactive and engaging ways of participating in my courses. In a place where technology is constantly advancing, I feel that we as students should be able to have access to up-to-date software that is being used in the work field rather than technology that may become obsolete. Sometimes it feels like I as a student did not obtain the knowledge or experience as I would have liked to in a course. Is there a way to obtain or create some sort of sandbox of tools that students and faculty can have access to in order to be interactive and engaged in what they're learning?

RESPONSE: Thank you for taking the time to write to share your feedback. The campus has negotiated reduced-cost access for students to a number of software programs. Additionally, department/college computer laboratories provide access to additional tools. One of the goals of our DISCOVERe program is to help prepare our students with the necessary technology skills for the workplace. I encourage you to share your thoughts with your department chair or dean, who can work with our Chief Information Officer.


CONCERN: Every semester students are asked to do evaluations for their courses. However, once the course has been completed we no longer know whether our comments or concerns were even heard. I have seen my fellow peers quickly rush through the evaluations because they don't feel like the evaluations even matter. I have also had a professor not give an evaluation because it didn't matter to the person. It seems like some courses disregard the voices of the students and continue with the same lecture or materials. I would like to know about the changes made to courses, whether it is a course from the previous semester or a course I'll be taking this upcoming semester, so I know that changes were made to help the future students succeed. It could be an email stating the changes that were made to a course to students who left the feedback and another email for students who are enrolled in the course at the beginning of the semester. I would like to know your thoughts on this.

RESPONSE: Student ratings of instruction are an important aspect of evaluating teaching effectiveness on our campus. Each department has its own policy regarding how frequently each instructor administers student ratings of instruction. Additionally, each department has its own minimum standard related to student ratings of instruction. How individual instructors take action based on student ratings of instruction, varies widely across the campus. A best practice is for each faculty member to inform students how the course has evolved over time based, in part, on student ratings of instruction. However, this is not required of any faculty member.

Department Chairs in each department review all student ratings of instruction, including all comments, and consult with faculty about possible areas of strength and opportunities for enhancement.


CONCERN: The University should consider moving the thesis deadlines for graduate students to much latter in the semester. The current system is unrealistic for a student in the sciences to complete their thesis by the mid-semester deadline. The result is that grad students pay fees just so they can have a few extra weeks to complete their thesis. This is unjust and unfair.

RESPONSE: In fact, the University has taken action on this very issue.  The deadline for thesis submission has been moved to later in the semester to accommodate thesis completion for a greater number of graduate students.  The deadline is 11 days later this Spring than it was last, with plans to make it even later in upcoming semesters.  In addition, a lower-cost option was added, effective Spring 2018, for students who complete all thesis requirements by the final day of instruction in a given semester.   With this option, student can enroll in a reduced cost ($350) zero-unit course (through Continuing and Global Education) in the subsequent semester, and still comply with the CSU's continuous enrollment policy for graduate students.


 

POSTED ON 03/09/18

CONCERN: I have found that many upper division courses are hard to obtain, thus increasing the length of time a student must attend Fresno State to graduate. Some statistics even show that it is taking 6 years to graduate a 4 year university. What is being done by Fresno State to offer more sections for upper division students so they can graduate in 4 years?

RESPONSE: In the past three years, Fresno State has steadily increased offerings of sections of upper division courses. In a few areas, the demand is not yet fully met, and the University is limiting the number of students accepted in those areas.

We are also systematically and strategically implementing measures that will help. Students are being asked to complete My Degree Plan, which will provide us with information on how many sections of courses are needed.

We also have a 4-year scholar program that offers priority registration, individualized advising, and other benefits (for those who keep good standing in the program).

For individual needs of certain upper division courses, students are advised to consult with their advisor and academic department.


CONCERN: The Fresno State catalog online is showing an error on this course:

CI 161. Content Area Methods and Materials in Secondary Teaching

Prerequisites: CI 152 AND CI 159 or concurrent enrollment; admission to the Single Subject Credential Program or teaching experience. Planning, delivering, and assessing content-specific instruction; academic and common core standards; identifying specific standards that require literacy strategies. (Instructional materials fee for Single Subject - Art Methods and Materials enrollees, $10)

Units: 3, Repeatable up to 999 units
Course Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Can I really take this course and receive 999 units of credit?

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this to my attention. These courses can be taken/repeated without limit, and there is a default of 999 in the database. We have notified the department to revise the repeatable limit.


CONCERN: Please help! Would you list the days & times on classes in the class schedule. It is not helpful to have TBA listed. And then generic classroom. How am I supposed to plan my schedule when the class schedule doesn't have the info I need?

RESPONSE: Because class schedules are made well in advance of the semester, departments do not always know who will be teaching or when they will be available. However, they want students to know that the classes will be taught. That said, I can see that without a specific time, that information is not very valuable. We will work with our departments to reduce the number of courses for which complete information is not available. Since the fall schedule is already completed, please check with the department where the course is offered for more complete information.


CONCERN: The search for classes site is not very easy to use. Courses are hard to find and missing important information. The keyword search doesn't really seem to work well at all.

RESPONSE: There are additional search criteria available that may assist you in narrowing your search. Click on the Additional Search Criteria, and you are able to search by time, day, instructor and course keywords, among other things.


CONCERN: I have an issue with the general physics classes. There's only two classes for each of them every semester, and they're either extremely early in the morning, or very late at night. There's nothing in between. Please consider adding more classes for these, or at least make the times a little bit more suitable to those of us that have to commute.

RESPONSE: You are probably referring to Physics 2A, which had only an early morning and an evening section this semester. Given the demands on space, the department must use rooms from early in the morning to late at night. The department is planning to open an additional section of Physics 2A in Fall 2018 and is searching for a classroom that would enable them to offer the section in the afternoon.


 

POSTED ON 01/16/18

CONCERN: I would like to see some changes in the general education program. As a transfer student who completed his lower division general education at a city college, I was surprised to know that there was upper division general education requirements. I thought the requirements were absurd because I entered Fresno State motivated to dive into my major courses and not have to be bombarded with additional time consuming courses.

I would like to see Fresno State, and the CSUs in general, reduce the number of general education requirements for both lower and upper divisions. I believe a meaningful education comes from choice and not obligation. With fewer general education requirements, students can graduate sooner because they are not bogged down by or failing courses that have little to no relation to their major and career goals. However, most importantly, students are able to focus on their major courses, early on in their college career. Students won't have to battle a full two years (or more) before taking the majority of their major courses.

RESPONSE: General Education's scope of courses and number of course units have been defined by the faculty in the CSU and are codified in the California Code of Regulations (Title 5). The Chancellor's Office has issued executive orders (the most recent is EO 1100 issued this past summer) to make certain that campus policies follow the law and promote student progress to degree. Per Title 5 and EO 1100, the maximum total number of GE units is 49, of which 9 are upper division. All community college transfer students are required to complete 9 units of upper division GE on a CSU campus.


CONCERN: Could you put a link to the building/class location abbreviations on the class search page? I finally found it somewhere else after looking forever, but it needs to be on the class search page itself.

RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion. This has been done.


CONCERN: I'm having a problem with the schedule of courses not being up in time to plan my classes. It never seems to be available or working right. It needs to be working all the time, or I can't get the classes I need to finish my degree. I wish someone at CSUF cared about what really happens when a student runs into problems with the online schedule all the time. Thank you.

RESPONSE: The schedule of classes is published usually one week prior to the course wish list being made available. This schedule is the work of all academic departments and programs, Scheduling Office and other offices. If one department’s schedule is not final, the schedule of classes cannot be published. It is a concerted effort each semester to release the class schedule in a timely fashion, and the schedule is always published before the wish list is available. 


CONCERN: It would be really awesome if Fresno State would offer a Degree in Law.

RESPONSE: California State University campuses are not able to offer law degrees under the state education code.


CONCERN: I was wondering what can be done for Staff who are also students in regards to Tech Lending. I recently tried to borrow a camcorder for my Management 110 class and was told as staff that is not something we are able to borrow. My only other recourse was to change my status from Staff to Student, but then I would lose my staff privileges. Is there no way to be listed as both or allow for exceptions when staff is also a student?

RESPONSE: We apologize for the inconvenience you have experienced. The policy you mentioned is accurate, and as a staff member who is also a student, you are asked to choose one category to be recognized in the system. I encourage you to speak with your professor, who may have ideas about how to best receive the resources you need for your coursework.


 

POSTED ON 09/14/17

CONCERN: The writing center's message says they are closed until the fall. Shouldn't it be open for summer session as well? If it is strictly an issue of cost, shouldn't Continuing & Global Education be funding student success (including writing center support) and not just space & personnel?

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this to our attention. We will assess the need for summer writing support and determine a course of action.


CONCERN: As a campus, we need better assessment of incoming transfer students from our local community colleges. After first noticing deficiencies of transfers students, I am began to conduct surveys of my lecture courses and the background of the students enrolled. Students who took introductory science and math courses and then have transferred to Fresno State are missing foundational concepts. Time is having to be taken away from students who are prepared in order to remediate these transfer students in mid and upper division courses. We have continued to pass the problem up in our own departments. How can we filter out students from other schools before allowing them in our classrooms?

RESPONSE: Lynnette - Incoming transfer students are admitted on the basis of their performance in their community college courses and are not required to take an assessment test. The university articulation officer works with community colleges and other institutions to identify courses that students wish to transfer to Fresno State. The articulation officer then works with departments to identify equivalency of these courses with Fresno State courses. Thus, academic units control which courses can be used by transfer students. Departments can work with other institutions to help them change the incoming course so that it better meets campus expectations. Please let your department chair or department curriculum committee know of your concerns so that changes can be made.


CONCERNS: I am writing in regards to my concerns with the inaccuracies of the catalog. There have been changes submitted to the catalog (some from 3+ years ago) that have still yet to be implemented. I am concerned that students and faculty are receiving the wrong information. Links do not work, some courses are listed as repeatable up to 999 units, the course PDF buttons do not work, there are countless (and frankly, blatantly obvious) spelling errors, the 17-18 catalog was "uploaded" before it was final (it ended up still being the 16-17 catalog with the year as 17-18 shown), and there are inconsistencies across the board. The language is poor and unclear, and courses and programs are listed that have not been active for years. I've looked everywhere for your 2017-2018 PDF catalog, and I can't find it. Will you have it ready before the next semester? Most colleges have theirs ready before summer.

RESPONSE: The 2017-18 catalog was published in the first week of June. There was a short time lag between when the 2017-18 catalog title appeared and the 2017-18 catalog content uploaded (less than 24 hours). Because a large portion of the catalog is auto-fed from PeopleSoft (PS), the time lag represented time PS takes to feed data to the online catalog. We realized this may have created confusion for readers who happen to check the catalog during that narrow time window, and will make sure next year we eliminate this time lag.

The online catalog was initially copied from the print catalog. We correct errors whenever they are discovered and reported. Program requirement and courses in the catalog must go through curriculum review and approval. This content belongs to the academic unit that offers the courses and the unit is responsible for error correction. The catalog office sends out a proof request for such corrections to all departments/units annually. The proof request for the 2017-18 catalog was sent out in November of 2016 with reminders in January and February 2017. Besides this annual check-up, whenever an error is reported by an academic unit, the catalog office corrects it. However, if the mistake to be corrected requires curriculum review, the university curriculum committee must be involved. The catalog office welcomes reports of specific mistakes and errors and will work with all campus community constituents to improve our catalog.


POSTED ON 06/15/17

CONCERN: Fresno State has long had an excellent Enology program, as well as a functioning commercial winery - both of which were the envy of other CSUs. But over the years things have changed. There have recently been a number of retirements and resignations from key positions, which the administration has been scrambling to fill. Meanwhile, some classes are currently staffed by graduate students and industry professionals on a temporary basis. So far, this has worked reasonably well. Still, this is not a desirable long-term solution. A problem with funding has a solution that is staring everyone in the enology and viticulture programs in the face: Make more money by making more wine! The winery currently has a great deal of unused capacity.

The Department of Enology and Viticulture needs to find a way back to the days when it was a magnet for students and professors. To do that requires leadership, vision and empowerment.

RESPONSE: Over the years, the viticulture and enology program at Fresno State has grown to be internationally recognized and to be in high demand by those seeking a degree in enology and viticulture. The program has also grown in size, and as a result, the needs have changed. The University is committed to making certain that the program has the best possible leadership as well as faculty and staff going forward. We believe we have been moving steadily in that direction. Our winery produces outstanding wines and we are fortunate to have the ability to sell the wines we produce. However, the purpose of the winery is to provide a hands-on learning experience for our students, not to become a large production commercial winery that competes with our industry partners and supporters. We know that the steps taken during this time of transition are what will best serve the students and prepare them for their careers in the wine and grape industry.


CONCERNS ABOUT CLASS AVAILABILITY: (1) I am currently a senior. During registration week, I was unable to add specific classes to my fall semester. I am on the right track to graduate, yet I need to Ling132 and Comm 114 in order to finish. I have already emailed the professors and they denied getting me a permission number. Is there any way you can open up more classes? I've talked to a few liberal studies major and they are also struggling to get the classes they need.

(2) I think Fresno State needs to focus on opening more classes for science majors. I am starting my fifth year and this is because the school offered one class time for essential classes! As a biology major, I wasn't able to take intro biology until my third year on campus, after requesting to be added to the class for two years at the biology department office. I nearly gave up. Also, priority registration is unfair to people starting their fifth year and still cannot classes they need to graduate.

(3) I would like to see more class sessions offered. For example, Coun. 201, a multicultural class with a class size of only 20 students and three sessions per semester, makes it hard for graduate students to secure a spot in the courses, knowing that so many counseling related majors all require this course.

RESPONSE: The campus is working diligently to provide sufficient courses to meet student needs. This coming year, students will be asked to use My Degree Plan, which will allow them to identify the semesters in which they wish to enroll in particular courses. This will provide departments with an estimate of the number of seats needed for each class each semester. Priority registration has been changed and going forward, students who are closer to graduation will have a better chance of getting the courses they need to graduate.


 

POSTED ON 05/08/17

CONCERN - Thank you Dr. Castro for listening to my concern (when you were on KMJ) about all the exams prospective teachers have to take to just qualify for the program. As I mentioned, students with bachelor’s degrees must pass the CBEST, which I believe should be an entrance requirement, but then also pass at least three CSET tests just to get in the program. This apparently was recently changed from having to pass one of the exams, along with 45 hours of observation in public school classrooms. With drastic teacher shortages in our state and area, many districts are hiring unqualified people anyway and putting them in intern programs. It seems we should be making it easier for students who have already proved their academic ability through the obtaining of their degree, especially those who are Fresno State graduates.

RESPONSE: The requirements you mention are all required by the California Commission for Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) and/or the CSU Chancellor's Office. The GPA requirement is set by the CSU and the CCTC. The CCTC requires CBEST for admission to a teacher prep program and the CSET in order to be credentialed. There are different CSETs for different credentials.

A CSU executive order, issued by the Chancellor, requires that all three multiple subject CSETs be passed prior to admission to a credential program. A campus may excuse up to 15% of students from having all three to enroll, this is usually used for interns and short-term teachers of record who are working full time in charge of a classroom already. A graduate who has completed an academic major in the field they wish to test is waived from the CSET. This applies to fields like agriculture, social science, math, physics, kinesiology, etc. There is currently no waiver for the CSET Multiple Subjects. That version covers the content taught by Multiple Subject Teachers, not cover material taught in the credential program.

To be credentialed, a candidate must also pass the RICA test over the teaching of reading. Additionally, to be credentialed in California a candidate must pass all parts of a high stakes Teacher Performance Assessment. This costs approximately $300 to take, but at Fresno State, where we administer the Fresno Assessment of Student Teachers (FAST), which is free. Fresno State is the ONLY university in California without a cost to the Teacher Performance Assessment. Every teacher candidate except those at Fresno State has to pay Pearson, Inc. to score their TPA, since only FAST and two Pearson Instruments are approved.

Our faculty agree with you wholeheartedly with your questioning on why students must prove academic ability when they already have a college degree. It makes sense if one is teaching in a field where a degree was not earned but no sense for one’s own major.

The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, the only such accreditor, has proposed standards that would require SAT/GRE scores in the upper 33 percentile plus four nationally normed multiple choice tests plus a nationally normed TPA for graduates to become teachers. Faculty at Fresno State have led the fight against the tests and the test scores. We do not know the future, however. The testing companies hold tremendous sway even though they present almost no evidence of the validity of the tests in predicting who will be a good teacher.

Fresno State has no extra requirements beyond what is mandated by the CTC and the CSU Chancellor's Office.


CONCERN: What is Fresno State doing to provide more paid research opportunities for students? I am an undergraduate student, I do not receive financial aid, my parents do not pay a dime for my education, I work over 40 hours a week to support myself and take out student loans. Particularly for science majors, how are students in my position supposed to support themselves and do research if the research is not paid? I do not have time or energy to do free research on top of course work and my jobs. Paid research opportunities are hard to find, especially in my department. Completing off-campus research during the summer is one option but typically, the research is short term and the funding as well. It is not enough. To make students more competitive for master’s programs undergraduate research is a must. Student athletes are provided with funding because it is understood that they are unable to have off-campus jobs to support themselves when they are going to practice and completing course work. I have heard they also get housing, tutoring and meal plans. Why does the university not also appear to make this effort for students who would like to do research? Why are sports more important than academics in this university?

RESPONSE: Fresno State provides undergraduate students two funding opportunities for research: the Undergraduate Research Grant and the IRA research funding (Instructionally Related Activities). The first is funded by the university, and the second is funded by student fees. Both grants will be open to all students (full- and part-time) beginning with the 2017-18 academic year. Besides these two funding sources, students are encouraged to work with their faculty for possible assistantships, which may be available. To get details and apply for the Undergraduate Research Grant or the IRA research funding, visit:

http://fresnostate.edu/academics/offices/undergraduate/research.html

http://fresnostateasi.org/business-office/instructionally-related-activities/

 

CONCERN: Geomatics Engineering needs some attention. Fresno State is one of the leading universities in geomatics it was the third nationwide in a research done in Canada 10 years ago and 10th worldwide. Why don’t you ask U.S. ranking to look into geomatics engineering major and start a recognition process for the major?

RESPONSE: Thank you for this suggestion. We are proud of the legacy of our Geomatics Engineering program and the accomplishments of our faculty and students. We will continue to work with our community and industry partners and professional organizations to increase the visibility and recognition that the program deserves.


CONCERN: I've been trying to get into my biology courses for over a year now and I can't get into them. I need these specific classes and now I won't be able to graduate on time.

RESPONSE: Please contact your adviser.


 

POSTED ON 03/30/17

CONCERN: Access to computers is a concern. I teach several courses and need two to three weeks of computer lab time with programs like Adobe Photoshop and iMovie. As is, I cannot address these needs for my students. My department does not have an adequate computer lab for the number of students I teach in these courses and I cannot schedule to use any other computer labs on campus. Both I and my department administrator have tried unsuccessfully. There is no availability. This is an issue that severely effects my ability to teach my students skills that they need upon graduation. My recommendation is to outfit several rolling computer labs that can be checked out by instructors, as they do in many high schools across the nation. These labs would have 25-30 laptops with appropriate software that could be scheduled and delivered to classrooms around campus. 

RESPONSE: Fresno State leaders deeply care about student success and have invested significant amounts of resources to purchasing new equipment for Art and Design. If the current allocation of available scheduled time is not sufficient for your classes, please discuss this issue with your dean, as together you can explore what other venues might be available.


CONCERN: We need more equipment for food science labs. This program is growing and the resources are not. In my food micro class, only about three of the six microscopes actually work, and we have one scale for over 20 people.

RESPONSE: The department recognizes lab needs and has been steadily improving the Food Science Lab’s capacity. New equipment added to the laboratory over the past two years includes a micro-centrifuge, a platform shaker, a lab blender, a water bath, two votex mixers, two hot plates, two environmental chambers, three automatic pipettors and an 8x4 white board for instruction. There are plans to replace an old refrigerator, two colony counters and address the equipment needs you cite during the coming summer. The department is developing plans for lab remodels to take advantage of additional funding support that might be identified in the future.


CONCERN: I have been hearing from students in the computer science program that many do not understand the lectures because professors assume people are already equipped with the basic knowledge. This is including introductory courses. I also heard that some professors just quickly solve the problems but do not walk students through them step by step to show how to solve them. Asking for help doesn’t seem to work either because they direct you to research on your own. It is frustrating to know that professors in that area don't seem to care about their students. These students want to learn but professors don’t seem to be teaching in an effective way.

RESPONSE: We understand that some students face challenges in introductory computer science courses such as CSci 40, 41 and 60. The department has worked with faculty to improve student learning during the past three years. Efforts include Supplemental Instruction in all introductory courses, using the DiscoverE tablet program in CSci 40 (one section) and CSci 41, Project Learning approaches in CSci 40 and CSci 41, as well as adopting an online interactive textbook for CSci 40. Instructors have also been encouraged and supported in implementing coding quizzes and coding exams to enhance student learning. Students are encouraged to take advantage of professor and teaching associate office hours (over five hours), lab sessions (two  hours) and supplemental instruction sessions (2-3 hours). For issues with specific class sections, please contact the chair of the department, Dr. Ming Li at mingli@csufresno.edu or 278.4792.


CONCERN: As a graduate student, I was unhappy to find this on the syllabus of a class this semester: “You are not allowed to use laptops or tablets in this class. They are distracting." The same professor told us he/she did not want us reading digitized version of our textbooks, but only hard copy books, as he/she didn't believe people who read digital versions learn as well.

Fresno State has invested in great technology to help us stay organized, keep track of notes and references and save money with digital versions of texts. Professors should not be able to arbitrarily ban useful technology in the classroom, nor to dictate which format we have to use as texts. I happen to do very well with digital textbooks in Kindle format, and I feel using them should be my choice. Isn't this part of the DISCOVERe program?

RESPONSE: A faculty member is able to determine the types of technology that can or cannot be used in a classroom. In some circumstances, faculty may require a tablet for DISCOVERe, a laptop and/or access to a particular software package as part of course requirements. In other situations, a faculty member may find that the use of technology (e.g., laptops, tablets, cell phones and the like) is distracting to the learning environment and may request that students do not use them during the class period. Regarding textbooks, faculty may request a particular format for a textbook, but it is the student's decision to select the text in the format that he/she learns best and meets their individual budget. 


 

POSTED ON 01/04/17

CONCERNS ABOUT CLASS AVAILABILITY:%nbsp;(1) We need more Crim 102 and 112 classes. These classes are prerequisites and are only offered twice this upcoming spring 2017.

RESPONSE: To clarify, Crim 102 and 112 are not prerequisites for any Criminology course. They are co-requisites to an internship. For spring 2017, the Criminology department added sections for incoming transfer students. The department is also considering declaring impaction to improve access to courses.

(2) Currently, the Psychology Department is only offering two courses in Area D of the required courses (both of these classes were filled up by the second day of registration). I, along with many other Psychology students, can no longer graduate next semester. It is not fair to students who are diligently trying to finish their degree in a timely matter.

REVISED RESPONSE (1-6-17): Thank you for bringing this concern to our attention.  The courses offered for spring in Psychology's Area D did fill up quickly, so the Psychology Department took corrective action in early December, and added three additional Area D courses for spring, creating 80 additional seats.  Graduating seniors should be able to find a class that meets their needs.

(3) Hire more instructors Make sure there are enough classes or enough seats in classes for the Fresno State student population and for highly impacted classes for upper GE and major courses. Students are not able to graduate on time due to the non-availability of courses. The instructor-to-student ratio is not balanced at all.

RESPONSE: We hired 69 new faculty last year and added 245 class sections last semester. We will continue to prioritize to maximize timely graduation.

(4) Class registration should consider academic standing for appointment dates. I take 12 units every semester and 3 or 4 units in the summer because of work. I maintain a 4.0, but it's becoming increasingly more difficult getting the classes I need.

RESPONSE: With the passage of SB 412, conversations about registration priority are underway. The legislation requires that the CSU establish priority registration for students who commit to and stay on course to graduate in four years (two for transfer students). We are also discussing prioritizing registration for those who have the fewest number of degree applicable units remaining.

(5) CONCERN: I am going into my final semester and I cannot register for my MI upper GE section. The class is Anthro 105w and it is the only W class offered for that MI section of upper GE. I have contacted all advisors and professors and have received zero helpful responses or adjustments to my issue. I always pay my student fees in a timely manner and have even stepped up my GPA from a 2.9 when transferred to 3.5 now. I have done everything possible to be a good student and to do my duty, but now I need your end of the bargain. Something needs to be done.

RESPONSE: Students have multiple options to meet the MI and Upper Division Writing requirements. The two ANTH courses (105W and 116W) are always in high demand but they are not your only option. As of November 30, 22 sections of upper division writing courses and 50 sections of MI courses still had seats remaining. The Center for Faculty Excellence is working with faculty this spring to develop new and improve existing upper division writing courses.


CONCERN: Classes shouldn't be longer than one hour, especially for those with learning disabilities who have shorter attention spans. You can't cram a bunch of information all at once and expect us to focus for two or three hours straight, then try to retain that information. We are not sponges; that is not how we properly learn. Also, certain classes shouldn't be offered only at one specific time -- night classes for example. There should be options for each class. Hire more professors and or add more sections.

RESPONSE: You’d be a great fit for our redesigned courses, which feature short lectures online and active classroom learning. Many instructors across the disciplines have redesigned their courses for improved student learning. We’ve also prioritized hiring additional professors and adding course sections. We hired 69 new faculty last year, and added 245 new class sections to meet student needs.


 

FACILITIES

POSTED ON 09/19/18

CONCERN: I appreciate all the work, updating lights, resurfacing of Bulldog Lane and Millbrook as it has made a tremendous difference. I was wondering though why the corner fence on Millbrook and Bulldog Lane to the ponding basin wasn't part of the work. It is an eye sore for that corner of campus as many people drive by that road just as much as the other campus roads. Thought it would have been repaired when the bushes came out. Hope it is in the plans in the near future to be addressed. Thanks.

RESPONSE: Thank you for writing. We are currently in the process of getting quotes for new fencing.


CONCERN: We need a place (website page) that shows all of our work orders and their statuses. Currently, we have to keep track of our own work orders and call the appropriate department, to see what the status is. This is ineffective and inefficient. Personally, I have started to keep track of my own, in a spreadsheet, but I still have to call to get an update on the status. This could all be automated, since the departments keep track of the status, internally, already.

RESPONSE: We agree and hope to have a better more efficient system in place shortly. Facilities Management is currently evaluating Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS) platforms for the ability to provide online access tracking and status access to work orders.


CONCERN: A concern about the renovation of Classroom 109 in Science II was submitted to the President’s Feedback page in late July. The concern focused primarily on the need for classrooms that facilitate evidence-based educational practices, including project-based learning (PBL).

RESPONSE: We are aware of the concerns expressed regarding the redesign of Room 109 in Science II, but please know there was extensive consultation and communication with the College of Science and Mathematics and the Provost's Office. The decision was made to proceed with the modernization and redesign of the centrally scheduled classroom in order to maximize the number of students that can be served. That said, we are focused on trying to identify an alternative space that can support similar project-based learning opportunities.


CONCERN: Can Fresno State start a composting program for the campus? Other schools are implementing programs in the state, and I think it would be a fantastic way to help reduce our landfill as a campus community. Some UC campuses, for example, provide these bins with their regular garbage receptacles so they are widely accessible.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion and commitment to sustainability. Facilities Management recycles green waste, and Dining Services provides separate receptacles for on-site food-waste separation. Additionally, Agricultural Operations currently composts all livestock waste from the various animal units. There is also a Food Recovery Network and a Sustainability Club (both are recognized student organizations), and I encourage you to reach out to them to see if you could help in any way. Please contact Tommy Esqueda, Associate Vice President for Water and Sustainability, regarding additional sustainability efforts.


CONCERN: Can the university go back to delivering mailing 2 times a day?

RESPONSE: Mail delivery once a day is the most efficient schedule given limited resources.  Please contact Mail Services (278.2941) to identify options for you to pick up or drop off any time-sensitive mail.   


CONCERN: I'm wondering (as not only a current staff member and alumna) why we are wasting water resources? I left the Science 2 building this evening at 8:45 with the sprinklers running, which would be fine, but half the sprinklers are aimed at the fence on the west side and the other half are aimed at the sidewalk? For a school who was built on Agriculture, I think your office would be a little more concerned with the waste of resources.

RESPONSE: We are very mindful of our water resources and appreciate your help in pointing this out. We have forwarded your concern to Facilities Operations to address. You can report broken sprinklers or other issues at any time by contacting Facilities Management directly at 278.2373.


NOTE: Facilities and custodial work orders should be submitted via our online form found here and not through the Feedback page.

POSTED ON 06/20/18

CONCERN: The amount of confusion as to our building spaces and their names is really frustrating, especially for visitors and for people who do not use specific buildings frequently. Would be nice if the name of the building itself was visible on the outside from all directions: North, South, East, West. Also would appreciate having the name of the building on the same plaque on each classroom and office door. For example, if an office or classroom number is 200, then the building code would also be on the same plaque as MCL 200, PHS 200, FFS 200, SS 200, EW 200, etc. Many buildings have the same room number, and students are needlessly waiting in the wrong building by the right number simply because we are not "labeled" effectively and accurately. This enhancement will alleviate a lot of confusion for our campus community. Thank you!

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. Currently, signage is located on at least one or more exterior entries to each building. If there is a specific building(s) of concern, please email Tinnah Medina, Associate Vice President for Facilities Management (tinnahcm@csufresno.edu). Room signage is updated as needed to accommodate interior room modifications and ADA.  It has been a standard campus practice to only include the room number and department name (if applicable) for our interior signage. Changing out all interior building signage to add the building abbreviation is not a cost-effective solution. As you may have noticed, we have made a significant investment in improved campus wayfinding and parking signage. Our next phase is to add building-identification signage near major building entry similar to the one for the University Center that also includes the names of departments housed within that building.


CONCERN: The restrooms in Science I are absolutely terrible- at least on the men’s sides. The majority of the doors do not have hangers for jackets/backpacks, only the first floor is handicap accessible, and the stalls are terrible unmaintained and honestly disgusting. The second floor men’s room recently had a major overflow and has been damaged for over a month now and still stinks from the overflow. Are there any plans to renovate the restrooms in Science I to an acceptable level? They're honestly in really bad condition and overdue for some repairs.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing. These restroom facilities are heavily utilized throughout the day. We have expanded custodial services to ensure multiple cleanings per day. Currently, there are no plans to renovate these restrooms. However, we will evaluate based on other Deferred Maintenance project priorities.

Facilities Management staff inspected the drains and piping of the second-floor restrooms and did not detect any water or odor issues. They will continue to monitor it. They will also be working over the summer months to fix the minor issues in these restrooms and add hangers on the doors.


 

POSTED ON 04/30/18

CONCERN: Every time I wait for the elevators in the Haak Center, I envision much more for the weedy garden bed on the balcony (outside the President's office). It seems like a great space with a lot of potential: perhaps a project for our amazing plant-science students; a place to grow fresh produce to be donated to the Student Cupboard; a pollinator garden; or maybe a space for growing native plants for seed saving (perhaps to be sold at the Farm Market?). Given the prime location, it could be a showcase for visitors to the Haak Center of the talents of our students, faculty, and staff, and an example of our campus values.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your innovative thinking! The Henry Madden Library rooftop garden suffered during the drought and never fully recovered. Facilities Operations is currently working collaboratively with several departments on a plan to refresh and upgrade the garden. A professor in the Plant Science Department and several of his students are developing a new design and planting plan that will utilize drought-tolerant plants. The planting will be performed by an ornamental horticulture class with the help of the Fresno State Grounds Team. Every semester, this class will be involved in new planting projects around campus to upgrade and beautify our campus landscape.


CONCERN: Please reduce the amount of live music near the USU. It is extremely disruptive and obnoxious.

RESPONSE: In an effort to build a vibrant, involved, engaged campus with sense of belonging, various campus-life experiences are scheduled for all students. This helps students hear local and student bands that are up and coming, and have events for our students with which they connect. In addition to live music, there are also cultural performances, dances, and DJ’s, which highlight other aspects of student life. The USU is cognizant of not disrupting classes and schedules the performances between the 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. lunch hour and will continue to be sensitive to this issue as to not be disruptive or obnoxious, as you state. Thank you for your feedback.


CONCERN: We need help with restrooms. It is difficult to find clean restroom opportunities, especially between class periods. I know it would be difficult to suggest renovating existing buildings, so one suggestion is to build new, smaller restroom "centers" that can serve parts of the campus and take pressure off existing facilities. Another suggestion is to make some restrooms, maybe upper floors near offices, accessible by staff/faculty cards only. Exhaust fans would be welcome too! 

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. Our custodial staff members are working to add additional mid-day cleanings to high-use restrooms. Please call the Facilities Work Control Center (278-2373) if you notice any restrooms need to be cleaned.


CONCERN: Can you please add microwaves and water-refill stations in all buildings? Many students can't run to the food court to heat up their food when they have back-to-back classes in buildings that are far away, like the Science 2 Building.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. In addition to the microwaves located in the lower floor of the University Student Union, a microwave has been added in the Kremen School of Education (lower level). Water-refill stations are installed in a number of buildings and can be found in the locations below:

  • Engineering East 1st floor 
  • Kremen Education Building 1st floor main lobby
  • Madden Library 2nd floor (next to Starbucks)
  • McLane Hall 1st floor breezeway 
  • North Gym (West of main entrance)
  • Peters Business UBC Lobby (west of stairway)
  • Professional/Human Services 1st floor (South entrance)
  • Satellite Student Union
  • Science 1 1st floor main lobby (Southside)
  • Science 2 1st floor (A wing near elevator)
  • Social Science 1st floor (East entrance)
  • Student Recreation Center
  • University Courtyard Atrium
  • University Student Union

We are currently installing water-refill stations in the following locations:

  • Joyal 1st floor (East hallway)
  • Joyal 2nd floor (South hallway)

CONCERN: Over the past two years I have been a student here, I often see the same problem at the beginning of a class as instructors experience technical issues with their Powerpoint or other presentations. The solution is easy: Install identical, dedicated computers in every classroom on campus that are connected permanently to the overhead projectors and have all the necessary software to play all the common presentation formats. The instructors would bring a thumb drive with their material on it to class and plug it into the room's computer. Such a computer wouldn't have to be very fancy for that purpose. You might even be able to get Michael Dell or Bill Gates to donate them. They can certainly afford to, it would be good PR for them. Win-win all around!

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestions. In the past, our classrooms included dedicated computers connected directly to projectors for faculty. This approach had merits and challenges. We shifted our efforts toward providing standardized technology in classrooms, a faculty laptop program, and a faculty laptop loaner service. With the Center of Faculty Excellence providing faculty training, combined with business hours and after-hours technical support for our faculty in the classrooms, this approach has been more successful overall.


CONCERN: There seem to be very few recycle bins on campus. I believe the addition of a few, specifically near the Student Union and the library, would very useful.

RESPONSE: The campus is committed to sustainable practices and partners with a waste-removal company that sorts campus waste at its facility. Recycled waste products can be placed in any of the bins around campus. Facilities Management will review the areas you mentioned to ensure there is an adequate supply of bins.


 

POSTED ON 03/09/18

CONCERN: The television monitor on the West wing of the student union is so small that you have to sit under it and look straight up to read the captions. If you sit at any of the tables it is hard to read because you’re so far away the captions are small. All I want for Christmas is a bigger TV monitor in the student union.

RESPONSE: The USU staff will explore different television options/prices and discuss them with the USU Board.


CONCERN: The bus stop outside the library was removed and orange cones were placed by the uneven pavement. Orange cones are not a permanent solution but that's all that was done, and more than sufficient time has passed for this to be handled properly. Why is it still like this? I'm sure everyone would like to see either (1) the bus stop restored or (2) the pavement made even and the orange cones removed. Thank you!

RESPONSE: The shelter outside of the library was destroyed in an accident and has been removed. The orange cones were placed in the area to alert pedestrians of uneven pavement that is going to be replaced. That parking lot (P31) is not designed to accommodate bus traffic and currently there are no plans to replace the structure. We have asked Facilities Management staff to replace the pavement as soon as weather permits. Thank you for your concern and your patience.


CONCERN: May we please have the postal center back? It's really crazy trying to find a post office during the lunch time and have time to wait in line.

RESPONSE: Within the Information Center, the campus community can purchase stamps, envelopes and padded envelopes. There is also a mail-drop that is picked up daily. Additionally, there are new Amazon lockers for all faculty, staff and students to utilize at their convenience.


CONCERN: I suggest that Fresno State considers establishing a "Mini Student Union" at Campus Point. This will provide a place for students to socialize in a fun area of the campus. I feel many students would utilize this facility after they have patronized the local businesses. It may create more business at Campus Point.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. There are actually plans for Auxiliary Services to open a Bulldog Business Center/C-Store at Campus Pointe, to be operated by our Kennel Bookstore team… Stay tuned for more updates on timing of opening! Estimated opening Spring/Summer 2019.


CONCERN: The music department building is also in much needed repair and renovation. Several classrooms have tiles in the floor missing and walls that are falling off. Sound systems and classroom technology is far outdated and in need to replacement. I am sure there is a long list of repairs and renovations that the university has to make over the next several years. It would just be wonderful if there were a timeline as to when students can expect to see these improvements made.

RESPONSE: Thank you, we agree that the classrooms in the Music Building as well as many other academic buildings are in need of modernization and updating. Over the next two years, the campus will invest over $10 million in classroom-modernization projects. The priority classrooms were identified based upon utilization and capacity. We have a large backlog and will continue to address as funding becomes available. The scope of these modernization projects (Conley Art 101 is a good example!) includes the upgrade of all classroom technologies, which is led by our Technology Services team in consultation with Academic Affairs.


CONCERN: I commute from Hanford every day in a Fiat 500, a car that solely runs on electricity. By the time I arrive at Fresno State, I have less than 10% battery life left, or approximately 14 miles. It takes me about 50 miles to get home. My issue is that I see people abusing these Fiat chargers every single day. It has gotten to the point that i have to arrive to school by 7am to be able to plug in and charge up my car. While I have extreme appreciation for these free chargers, they NEED to be better regulated. The sign states that the max charge is 4 hours, but I have seen very few vehicles follow that rule. I make sure that once my car has hit 100% charge, I move it to make space for another person to plug in. I never stay above the 4 hour limit out of respect to the other drivers. With that said, there are multiple Fiats that will stay on the charger for well over 4 hours, the stated time limit. I have taken photos of these cars and I will gladly submit them for further inspection. All that I ask is that either we get officers monitoring these machines so that they can’t be abused by users, or add a few more Fiat EV chargers. With the expanding electric car market, 3-4 chargers just won't cut it, especially if it is un-regulated. Thank you for your time and I hope this issue will be resolved immediately because I don't enjoy coming to school then having to worry about being able to get a charging spot just so I can make it home after my classes.

RESPONSE: Thanks for sharing your concern. We are aware of the heavy demand on the existing vehicle-charging stations. Our Traffic Operations team has recently enhanced enforcement of the EV charging spaces. Any vehicle parked in a space designated for electric vehicles must be connected and charging at all times. Parking permits are not currently required at EV Charging Stations; however, vehicles are required to comply with posted time restrictions. We are hopeful this enforcement will enhance the availability of our EV spaces. We are also considering a policy change that would require users to have a Fresno State parking permit. The charging stations were made possible with funding from a grant from the California Energy Commission. We are pleased to see the increased demand and usage, and we are exploring the possibility of adding another charging station possibly on the west end of campus in the future.


CONCERN: I would like to suggest that we might add one more bike barn on the northeast side of campus near the Science buildings. I would also like to bring the lack of cover for when it rains or even when it is really hot over all bike lock areas. Riding your bike home with a drenched seat is a really uncomfortable situation. For me I have to ride 3 miles home, and if it rained at all the seat absorbs the water and remains soaked for a long time after. Coverings would also protect our bikes from getting really hot during the warmer months, which allows a more comfortable ride for those of us with bicycles. Rain and direct sunlight can also damage different parts of bikes, so if at all possible I'd like to see some sort of covering over bike lock stations. Thank you for considering this.

RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion and for riding your bike to campus. We will evaluate the feasibility or adding an additional bike barn in this area of campus.


CONCERN: To care about all the classes that are being held in the S. gym! This part of the campus has been severely neglected! I don't think 133, 134, 135, or 136 have ever been touched since they were built!

RESPONSE: A major upgrade to North and South Gyms is currently underway that will increase the utilization of many of these areas. The utilization of non-centrally scheduled classrooms is managed by the School/College. Centrally-scheduled classrooms are managed centrally by Academic Affairs.


 

POSTED ON 01/16/18

CONCERN: I worked at Fresno State's Autism Center while I attended the university. It was a valuable resource not only to students seeking careers with the wonderful population, but to the community and families around the Central Valley. It saddens me that it has closed. I hope Fresno State is working to bring up such a fantastic way to connect with and serve the community.

RESPONSE: We also were sad to see the closure of the Autism Center at Fresno State. Both children and student workers benefited from this program. Unfortunately, consistent difficulties recruiting and retaining the appropriate number and type of staff members necessary to properly work with the children led us to discontinue services. Although the Autism Center was designed to provide services for children ages 2-5, we do continue to provide services for individuals with autism spectrum disorder ages 6 and up through our Focused Behavioral Services program. This program has been operating since 2009 and continues to provide an increasing number of training, education, and research opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students at Fresno State. 


CONCERN: The cross walk lines at Keats and Maple are very faded. Could we get them repainted? Cars need a better reminder that they should go through that intersection carefully. During 8 am and 5 pm, some people race through the intersection to see if they can squeeze through the pedestrians.

RESPONSE: Thank for you calling this to our attention. We have asked our Parking and Transportation manager to evaluate the condition of the crosswalk paint and repaint, if deemed necessary. Flashing stop signs have been installed in the intersection as an enhanced safety precaution.


CONCERN: The peters building has AC on when it’s freezing outside. I understand this is a common problem, but it’s affecting my learning because I am not comfortable. It’s incredibly hard to concentrate when I am shivering. At the very least please put the heaters on in the mornings.

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this to our attention, and we regret this inconvenience. Our Facilities Operations team works hard to keep our buildings warm in winter and cool during the summer and maintain a comfortable learning environment year round for all students. Specific concerns about a building being too warm or cold should be submitted via our online customer service form (found here).


CONCERN: Why is one of your professors still teaching there after his actions against free speech and the way he acted to your students?

RESPONSE: The University is handling this issue within the parameters of its personnel policies.


CONCERN: There are fleas all over campus. I hear from students and staff who are being bitten in various areas. Is there anything we can do about the cat problem? If we can't re-home them can we at least put flea killer on them?

RESPONSE: In September, we had an issue with fleas around a few buildings that were attributed to an opossum. Appropriate spraying of these areas occurred, and we have not had any reported incidents since that time. The cat problem has historically been a challenge, and we continue to discourage feeding these feral cats.


CONCERN: There's a lost opportunity in not allowing members of the campus community separate between recycling, composting, and landfill waste. I understand that the campus has all its waste sorted of-site, however this does nothing to help students and others learn from having to make decisions about where the trash they help produce goes. There's a didactic function that goes along with deciding whether this goes in this bin or that one. In allowing members of the campus community to make these decisions Fresno State could foster more responsible behavior off campus. If you go to movie theaters, restaurants, and sports venues around Fresno you'll realize that people throw away recyclables with abandon. Could it be that they assume that this venue or location is also doing off-site sorting? Perhaps our mission could extend to forming ethical and responsible students beyond the borders of campus. We can do this, in part, by making recycling a more conscientious process on campus.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback and for your commitment to sustainability and helping to prepare our students to be responsible members of the community. Our campus waste reduction, diversion and education efforts are significant and include:

  • Partnership with Industrial Waste and Salvage which sorts campus waste at its Fresno Materials Recovery Facility.
  • Partnership with the California Conservation Corp. to provide beverage container recycling inside buildings and at large campus events and gatherings such as all athletic events.
  • Decreasing the amount of paper used by increasing the availability of web-based services.
  • Composting farm waste and exploring expansions into food service waste composting.
  • Mulching and reuse of green waste.
  • Participation in the State Agency Buy Recycled Campaign.

Building in recycling requirements for construction and remodeling projects.


CONCERN: Last spring, I suggested that the concrete curb holding back the bark in the roundabout at Barstow and Chestnut be repaired as some large chunks of concrete and completely gone. You indicated that the city would be notified but nothing has been done. Is there a time frame where they will repair the broken chunks that are missing or perhaps redo the entire circle?

RESPONSE: We will request another update from the City of Fresno and, if not feasible, we will have the campus handle the repair. 


CONCERN: I was wondering why is the gate near the Homan Hall closed? It is the gate on frontage road I believe. I think it would be much safer for students if they kept it open. I live at the dorms and sometimes I want to drive to the library or to the recreation center but I feel unsafe going through cedar. Keeping the gate open would help and be safer for residents. I think many of us are concern with our safety and we hear many crimes that happen on the street cedar. I try avoiding that street but I can't because in order to get to P27 you have to go through cedar. A helpful solution would be to keep that gate open.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. The parking lot gate at Homan Hall is closed for security reasons. Closing the gate intentionally forces vehicles and pedestrians to enter and exit from a single entrance, which greatly enhances security. The gate can be opened during emergency situations and special events. 


CONCERN: The agriculture units have student-housing spaces that could use updating. The students who live at these units spend hours and hours putting in work and effort to make sure our departments and farms are representing Fresno State well. Our animals’ health and well-being is our top priority, and we take very good care of them. Some of the living spaces for the units are simply one bedroom, no kitchen, and no laundry area. Students pay rent to work and live at the units. I would like to see a plan to update these living spaces and make them easier to live in. Not having access to a kitchen or laundry is difficult as a student going to school full time and working part time. I do not know that the living areas were updated or looked into over the years, but I hope they can be in the near future. Thank you.

RESPONSE: Thank you. We are working with the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology to explore improvements to these student living quarters. These living areas are provided as a benefit to students who work on the farm laboratory.


CONCERN: The Joyal building houses over a hundred employees and there are many offices that do not have water to help keep us hydrated throughout the day. We have numerous student service programs in our office as well and again, when students come in, there are some offices that are not equipped to offer them water to keep them hydrated. In working with remodeling different buildings and offices, has it been considered to install water filling stations in the building?

Another repair that is desperately needed is repair to our elevator. The elevator walls are covered with a red padding that gives a scary, asylum feel. It can cause people to feel extremely anxious.

RESPONSE: We will explore installing a water-filling station. The campus has a long list of deferred maintenance priorities, which includes upgrading of elevators depending upon age and condition of equipment. We will look into updating the aesthetics of the elevator. The interior corridors have been recently painted, and new graphics have made a significant improvement.


CONCERN: I very much appreciate the fact that Fresno State offers electric car charging stations. There are a large number of us on campus that drive electric cars. However, there are far too few of them to accommodate the number of cars on campus - both faculty/staff and student. At any given point during the day, the stations are all in use (except the Nissan chargers, which don't get used much). I would really like to request that the University look into getting more charging stations - it's the way of the future. You could double the number you have now and they would still all be in use. It would also be really nice to have some kind of cover over them, ideally maybe solar panels, if that's a possibility? The other issue is that a lot of non-campus people use these stations, and take them away from campus users. Is there a way to limit some chargers just for people on campus? There's one man who lives close to campus who owns two electric cars, and is constantly using the stations, often with both cars at the same time. He has no campus connection at all. It would be really nice to have more options for the large number of electric cars owned by campus users. Maybe more stations in another part of campus?

RESPONSE: We are aware of the heavy demand on the existing vehicle charging stations, but currently there are no plans to add an additional location. The charging stations were made possible with funding from a grant from the California Energy Commission. We are pleased to see the demand and usage. 

We recognize that use of the charging stations may be used by the public as well, and we are exploring solutions to this challenge.


CONCERN: Science Building is again too cold to work in - like every fall. My office has been below 65 degrees for 2 weeks, and is often 60-62 degrees. I cannot bring myself to use space heaters because I find it offensive to spend energy to cool a building way down just to heat it back up again. Please find more sustainable solutions than space heaters. And no, I don't want a space heater until then.

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this to our attention and we regret this inconvenience. Many of our buildings have aged HVAC equipment, which impacts our ability to properly control room temperatures. Specific concerns about a building being too warm or cold should be submitted via our online customer service form (found here).


CONCERN: Our labs in engineering need significant improvement, but I’d like to see a student Center or mini mart go into Campus Point. The mini mart could contain basic food and hygiene products and the student center would also include scantrons school supplies. I live just off campus but don’t own a car so having a market at campus point would make getting most of my basic groceries each week significantly easier. Finally, have you considered bring Panera Bread to Campus Point? Another great food option would be Noodles and Company. Both are great and would provide cheap eats to students and families in the area. Keep up the great work!

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. There are actually plans for Auxiliary Services to open a Bulldog Business Center/C-Store at Campus Pointe to be operated by our Kennel Bookstore…Stay tuned for more updates on timing of opening!


CONCERN: With night time temperatures approaching 40 degrees - can we please have hot water in the McLane Hall restrooms to wash our hands? For years, the hot water is available around November 1st and it's now November 15th. We are cold!

RESPONSE: The provision of hot water is tied to when we turn on the heat for our buildings. Many restrooms on campus do not have hot water during non-heating months. We apologize that we cannot provide in every restroom. If there are specific maintenance items that need to be addressed, please submit the Facilities online customer service form found here. We are also exploring launching an online app to report maintenance concerns.


CONCERN: The restrooms at the Lab School are in very poor shape and have been that way since I have been here, 18 years. In the past 18 years, couldn't there been money allocated to upgrade this restrooms. One of these days maybe you could stop by and check them out.

RESPONSE: The Lab School is actually a temporary building that calls to be demolished as part of our campus master plan. It would not be prudent to invest significant fiscal resources to renovate these restrooms; however, if there are specific maintenance items that need to be addressed, we will, of course, address as necessary. We will review with our Facilities Operations staff.


 

POSTED ON 09/14/17

CONCERN: The stairwells in the library are a fire hazard because they are not kept open during the library's public hours. Especially in a power outage, this is a serious safety issue that is being ignored.

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this to our attention. The stairwell doors remain open during the Library’s operating hours. These doors are fire-rated, which means they will automatically close during a fire which can help contain a fire and keep it from spreading. The doors will automatically close if the building has a power outage, and must also be closed during fire-testing. Even if a door is closed, it will remain unlocked and can be pushed open. If you have a specific concern, please feel free to contact Richard Smith at 278.1100 .


CONCERNS: University Courtyard – (1) I was charged $75 for “moderate cleaning” after I checked out for summer, without clarifying what exactly that moderate cleaning was. I have lived in the dorms before and am familiar with the check out process; I left my room exactly how it was supposed to. They have been unresponsive and difficult when I’ve tried to inquire about these charges. (2) Recently, it was reported the Fresno State has the least expensive dorms in California. However, University Courtyard is STILL not worth the price. The food in the dining hall is subpar and the buildings and furniture are in dire need of upgrading. Even when we request things to be fixed, University Courtyard is slow to respond, if they even respond at all. Please look into how University Courtyard is being run.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. University Courtyard strives to provide exceptional customer service for all residents. Each year, they continue to update/replace room furnishings. The listing of fees/fines is included both online and in the University Courtyard handbook which is provided to every resident. However, if you have a specific request in regard to the cleaning charge, please contact the Director of Housing, Erin Boele, at 559.278.2345, option 5 or eboele@csufresno.edu.


IDEA: An opportunity for service to our campus community - purchase several inexpensive 'EZ Reacher' tools (https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B0057X8AKC/ref=yo_ii_img?ie=UTF8&psc=1) and small trash bags for picking up trash and make them available for free checkout in the Student Union at the bowling alley or the information counter with an ID card. This could be promoted to clubs, sororities, fraternities, departments and offices as a quick and easy service opportunity. It could be given the name 'Bulldog Beautification' or some other catchy name. It could make it 'cool' to pick up trash and keep our campus clean."

RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion. Our grounds and custodial teams strive to keep our campus clean, however, if there is an issue that requires immediate attention, please notify the Work Control Center at 278.2373.


 

POSTED ON 06/15/17

CONCERN: As a student who frequents the "quiet section" of the library, I believe it should be easier to report individuals who do not follow the rules (loud and extended conversations). Currently, the only option is to report the issue to staff at the main desk, who then investigate the situation. For many students, having a quiet, distraction-free environment is essential when reading and studying.

RESPONSE: Thank you for letting us know about your concern. It is an ongoing challenge to keep the quiet areas of the library free of noise. As you mentioned, you can report the problem to the public safety assistants (PSAs) on the first floor of the library either in person or by calling them at 278.1038. We also have PSAs who walk around the building and enforce the noise restrictions. The library takes your concerns very seriously and will explore additional ways to keep our designated quiet areas free of distraction.


CONCERN: I could not find a way to rate our campus catering online. The quality and service has not been good recently.

RESPONSE: We regret that your experience with Catering was not up to your standards. University Dining Services is committed to providing our campus with exceptional menu offerings, service and hospitality. Although we do not have an online rating system, we always want to know how we can improve. Please contact our Catering Manager, Megan Sarantos, at mesarantos@csufresno.edu or 559.278.4545. We also have a feedback page in which you can submit comments, please visit: http://www.auxiliary.com/diningservices/comments/index.html.


CONCERN: Please fix University Courtyard. Right now it feels like I am paying too much for below mediocre living conditions.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern.  University Courtyard strives to provide an affordable all-inclusive room and board program. In fact, our housing rates were just ranked as the lowest cost and one of the best values when compared to other campuses in the CSU and UC system. If you have specific concerns or recommendations, please contact Erin Boele, director of housing, at eboele@csufresno.edu or 278.2677.


CONCERN: Provide additional bookstore hours multiple weekends prior to the end of the semester. Master's Projects students are not able to have their projects bound on the weekend, when working adults are available to travel to the University. I was not aware of this limitation until a student of mine tried to have her project bound the first weekend of May and found that the bookstore services were not available.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. The Kennel Bookstore’s operating hours during the semester are Monday-Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is open on select Saturdays during the semester, typically when there are special events on campus i.e. home football games, Vintage Days, Graduation Ceremonies, Preview Days and at the start of each semester. We will evaluate if it would be cost effective to extend operating hours to accommodate end of semester events/activities.


CONCERN: The desks in many Fresno State classrooms are very small. Throughout my college career, I have often had to put something on my lap (notes, book) because there was not enough room on the desk.

RESPONSE: We understand your concern; however, classroom space is a limited resource. In order to maximize the allowable room capacity and seat count, the campus uses a standard sized desk. However, as we modernize more of our centrally scheduled classroom facilities we are adding chairs with larger desktops as well as reconfiguring some rooms with tables and chairs that provide for a more flexible setup and encourage more group discussion. The standard desk (tablet armchair) that we currently have allows us to accommodate more students given the room capacity requirements.


CONCERN: I am disappointed that requests for repairs were acknowledged yet never completed, nor given a reason why they were not. I submitted a request for repair of chairs in Hall 191, Engineering East. It is almost impossible for me to sit through a two-hour, 50-minute lecture in those miserably uncomfortable chairs. The seating across the campus is pretty poor. I admit that I have a disability so may be more sensitive, but my classmates all squirm and complain as well.

RESPONSE: Our Facilities Management team repaired three damaged chairs on 4/18/17 and the desktops were adjusted on 4/17/17. We are also hoping to replace the seating in this lecture room as well as many others over the next three years.


CONCERN: The concrete curb that circles the planted area in the roundabout at Barstow and Chestnut Avenues needs to be redone. It's breaking up in places and is an eyesore when you drive onto campus.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. Our Facilities Management team will work with the City of Fresno to get this curb repaired.


 

POSTED ON 05/08/17

CONCERN: The Henry Madden Library needs to open earlier. It opens at 7:45 on most weekdays. Unfortunately, there is always a huge crowd of students waiting to get inside. I'm sure modifying the hours by having the library open 45 minutes earlier would be beneficial to many students.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your recommendation with us. We take many factors into consideration, especially gate count data of people entering the building, when determining the library’s hours of opening. Also, please understand that every hour we add to our hours of operation carries significant costs, so increased hours may necessitate cuts in other areas. It is always therefore a balance of many factors. We will certainly keep this in mind for the future discussions on our hours of operations.


CONCERN: The men's restroom located on the third floor in the Food and Science building is in definite need of mirrors. A good spot to put them would be over the vanities/sinks since there is room.

RESPONSE: Wewill submit a request to Facilities Management.


CONCERN: The electric car charging facility is wonderful - once again, marks our campus as a unique campus with special leadership attributes. The campus students, faculty and staff who use this facility will really appreciate if this is limited to only us and not outsiders. Inclusiveness is great, however, with a limited number of charging stations available often the Fresno State folks don't get to charge their cars since the stations are occupied by outsiders. The list includes sales clerks from dealerships who sometimes come with multiple cars to charge at Fresno State!

RESPONSE: Thank you for you feedback. Our Traffic Operations team has recently increased enforcement of the Electric Vehicle (EV) charging spaces. Any vehicle parked in a space designated for electric vehicles must be connected and charging at all times. Parking permits are not required at EV Charging Stations. However, vehicles are required to comply with posted time restrictions. We are hopeful the increased enforcement will enhance the availability of our EV spaces.


CONCERN: The Science 1 building is aging. However, it is also where we accomplish much of our Chemistry and Biology research and teaching. These rely on critical infrastructure such as electricity and water. Thank you for the improvements to the building's electrical supply! This has calmed the nerves of many who rely on refrigeration and sensitive analytical instruments to accomplish their work.

We now need to look at the dependability of our water purification system. The water distillation units on the roof are several decades old. They periodically malfunction and leak through the ceiling into the main chemistry stockroom. More importantly, when they do break down, teaching and research in the building can come to a halt.

Several locations on campus have state-of-the art reverse osmosis (RO) systems installed and maintained by a local water purification company, Evoqua Water Technologies. These include Viticulture and Enology, the Department of Justice Crime Lab and the new Jordan Agricultural Research Center. The cost to replace our aging distillation system will be approximately $20,000. As part of your commitment to infrastructure improvements, I ask that you work with members of your facilities management team to assure that this system is installed.

RESPONSE: We are currently replacing the failing distilled water with a new reverse osmosis system. Your patience has been greatly appreciated.


CONCERN: Please stop having facilities/construction employees do loud work while classes are in session nearby. This is particularly bad in the older buildings such as McLane Hall where the sound insulation isn't the best. Between summer, weekends and breaks, it should be possible to do this type of work in a way that doesn't disturb classes.

RESPONSE: We understand your concern; however, not all construction and major repairs can be completed after hours, or on weekends and semester breaks. Please know that our Facilities management team goes to great lengths to minimize the noise and inconvenience created by major repairs and construction. Scheduling work to be performed when classes are in session is only done as a last resort due to issues such as time constraints, nature of the work or an emergency.


CONCERN: I came here for Preview Day with my niece (it was awesome!) and attended a session in the SSU. Is it feasible to update the chairs in there? They were so uncomfortable. A lot of other parents and students were complaining that some of the seats didn’t have much cushion support.

RESPONSE: It is nice to hear that you enjoyed our Preview Day. We apologize that the seating was uncomfortable for you and the others who attended the event. We will explore the feasibility of replacing these chairs in the future.


CONCERN: Upon driving up to the Satellite Student Union, the four large garbage bins distract from the beauty of the campus. I notice this heading south on Maple (from Barstow) before turning onto Matoian Way. Because we hold so many functions, especially the graduations, it is an eyesore to our visitors.

RESPONSE: We agree these bins are unsightly. As part of our parking lot renovation program this is an area we hope to improve in the near future, including constructing a trash enclosure area that is more aesthetically pleasing.


 CONCERN: Recently the track and field facility was renewed. It was long overdue. While I appreciate the efforts done in the last year, I believe that there is a lot more work to be done. Some upgrades are stands (maybe something similar to tennis), storage rooms, restrooms, a fence outside the track, a grand entrance with an honor wall and some team and equipment needs such as benches. The infield is not complete yet. Is there a time line on moving forward with any of these items? Is there a vision on this facility for the immediate future? Thank you in advance.

RESPONSE: The original track and field project was a renovation to upgrade the facility to high-level practice facility for our student-athletes. The program will continue to use Veterans Memorial Stadium for all competitions.  Our long-term facility plan includes further upgrades to the facility. Due to the timing of the track completion, it was too rainy for our Grounds team to seed the infield area at that time. The infield will be completed starting June 1 and is expected to be ready by the start of the new semester (duration 8-10 weeks). We will be grading, leveling, incorporating soil amendments and planting new grass. The irrigation system is already installed and the controller has recently been upgraded.


 

POSTED ON 03/30/17

CONCERN: Please give us public Wi-Fi.

RESPONSE: We provide wireless internet for everyone, including visitors to our campus. Fresno State believes in providing helpful technology services to its campus community and the general Fresno community, especially in providing wireless internet services. Please visit this page for more information: http://fresnostate.edu/help/fac-staff/internet/index.html. Visitors to our campus can register for a one-day guest wireless account.


CONCERN: Simple upgrades to the restrooms in the USU would be very beneficial. The restrooms are constantly running out of toilet paper and hand towels.

RESPONSE: Thank you for letting us know. We will ask our USU custodial staff to focus more attention on the cleanliness of the restroom facilities and ensuring paper supplies are always stocked.In the future, please submit facilities and custodial work orders via our online form found here.


CONCERN: The new paint and signage in the Joyal Administration Building looks great. My concern is that the building was painted and updated with new signage two or three years ago and rumor was it was a pretty expensive project. Is painting and updating signage in the Joyal Administration every 2 1/2 years a good use of University funds? Was the new update privately funded? While the updates are great, they were far from necessary.

RESPONSE: Depending upon office changes/relocations it is sometimes necessary to update the building signage. However, the existing signage has been there for a number of years – since 2009. The new signage and branding project is providing our students with the ability to easily navigate the location of various offices located in the building. In addition, the modular signage system will help mitigate costs in the event of future office relocations. The signage and graphics update was not funded privately. The estimated cost is $33,000. Painting of walls and new baseboard is being done by Plant Operations as part of normal maintenance.


CONCERN: The response on 2/9/17 about the 25Live system did not address my concern. I will try to articulate better. There are rooms in the Library that we as departments are not allowed to book during the semester for various events. They are for instructional purposes and I have been told “no” on numerous occasions with the message that "the Library rooms are reserved during the semester for other things" -- yet it still shows they are available on the calendar. If this is standard, they should not be viewed as “available” on the calendar.

In regards to the NG118, I try to book for the open spot and am then am told “no” because of take down and setup time. This is fine, however, they need to account for that in the availability listed, as each one is different and we need to know exactly when it is available.     

RESPONSE: Library Administration understands that meeting space on campus is limited and will do our best to accommodate requests in accordance with our policies. We have one computer lab that is reserved for information literacy instruction for four months each year (September, October, February and March). Our librarians conduct hundreds of information literacy instruction sessions each year and this is the only remaining classroom with computers that we can use for those efforts. Unfortunately, if it is made unavailable in 25Live, individuals will not be able to book the room for the other eight months of the year. If you have any further questions, please contact the library's associate dean, Amanda Dinscore. 

The procedure for using NG 118 (given on 25Live website), requires a two-hour window for take-down and set-up. If you have any questions or think your event would require less time, please call the Scheduling office directly.


 

POSTED ON 02/09/17

CONCERN: I love the Fresno State logo signs at the Maple/Shaw and Cedar/Barstow entrances! I think it would be cool to have the logo created in plants/flowers as a focal point somewhere on campus. I'm sure it would be a much-used photo spot during Commencement.

RESPONSE: Nice idea! We will share with our fantastic grounds team. Please keep in mind something like this would require additional cost to maintain.


CONCERN: The business building looks quite dirty with its old white paint on the outside of the building. And the rough surface manages to trap a lot of dirt and grime. What about sprucing it up with a nice desert paint color? It sure would make the building pop compared to what it looks like now.   

RESPONSE: Thank you, we agree given that the building was built in 1988. The campus has invested $20 million to address our deferred maintenance backlog and the priorities included modernization of labs and classrooms, ADA path of travel improvements, new roofs and HVAC system upgrades and elevator equipment replacement. We have a lot more work to do, but the good news is that we are making real progress towards reducing this backlog.


CONCERN: The women's restroom on the main floor of the Kremen Education Building usually is considerably not clean by the afternoon/evening and pretty much never smells decent in the afternoon/evening.

RESPONSE: Thank you. We will ask our custodial team to pay closer attention to this area. In the future, please submit facilities and custodial work orders via our online form found here. We are also exploring an online app to report such maintenance concerns.


 

POSTED ON 01/04/17

CONCERN: Provide classrooms for philosophy classes that are either in the same building as the department or nearby. The trek back and forth to Family and Food Science (for classes) to the Music Building (to offices) is exhausting and demoralizing.

RESPONSE: Space is a scarce resource on campus. In the best of all possible worlds, the campus would be organized in a fashion where major courses and faculty offices would be in the same location. Programmatic changes, differential program growth, and changes in student enrollments all make it challenging for every program to have the same “home” for faculty, students, and course offerings. We’ll continue to try to improve our campus infrastructure, facilities and layout.


CONCERN: Last semester, I was enrolled as a graduate student, taking 9 units – which I understood to be full time - and was denied entry into the Rec Center using my ID card. I had to pay $10 to be a guest so that my friend and I could play racquetball. Can't my fees pay for me to use the Rec Center? Furthermore, will there be any more racquetball courts built that the public might use, like the ones that were previously attached to the North Gym?

RESPONSE: It is hard to determine what happened in this situation without knowing your specific fee-paying status. Access to the Student Recreation Center for all students is determined by payment of the Student Body Center Fee. Not all graduate programs include that USU/SRC fee. Any student who has a question on their eligibility may contact the Rec Center for more information. There are no current plans for additional public racquetball courts on campus. However, currently the racquetball courts at the Student Recreation Center are available to members on a walk-in basis if reservation have not been made. Reservations are offered as a courtesy.


CONCERN: Is there a phone number that students or staff may call to report overwatering on campus? There are sprinklers on campus that become broken, or just water the sidewalk more than the grass itself, and there is not always an employee around to report this to.

RESPONSE: Yes, please call 278.2373 to report water leaks around campus including sprinklers, faucets or toilets. Our grounds and facilities crews maintain over 36,000 sprinklers to irrigate our 1,400-acre campus and they appreciate when these issues are identified and reported.


CONCERN: The first floor women's restroom in the Peters Building needs some work - stall doors, sink, paper towel dispensers. Since this restroom is used by conference participants, it would be nice to see a restroom that doesn't look so shabby.

RESPONSE: Thank you for notifying us. We have reported the issues to our facilities and custodial management and asked that they be addressed. In the future, you can submit specific work orders using our online customer service form (found here). We will add this restroom to our priority list of projects as additional deferred maintenance funding is available.


CONCERN: As a Library employee, I know there are many doors in the Library to special departments that are very heavy, close automatically and don't have any automatic way of opening. There is no way they can be ADA compliant. It takes a great deal of effort for special needs students (and many regular adults) to open and get through these doors. As an example, all the doors leading in to Music and Media on the third floor are this way. What can be done to make them more accessible?

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. If there are specific doors you have noticed that are difficult to open, please contact Richard Smith (rismith@csufresno.edu) so he can work with Facilities Management staff to evaluate.


 

POSTED ON 11/3/16

CONCERN: Please use funds to improve the Art Department. The building is old and cramped, ceilings leak, and the tools, supplies and equipment are very old and outdated.

RESPONSE: Over the next two years we are investing $20 million in deferred maintenance work across campus. The Conley Art Building has been the beneficiary of over $2.7 million of improvements this year, including modernization of Conley Art 101, new heating/air conditioning, new roof, renovated restrooms, ADA path of travel improvements and new elevator to meet ADA requirements.


CONCERN: Why aren't lockers available for commuters who consider the University our second home until classes are over for the day? Lockers are available for students who are in the athletic or music programs. It's something that I, as a Child Development major, could use.

RESPONSE: Thank you for this suggestion. We will share with our Student Involvement colleagues to see if there is an opportunity to install within the existing University Student Union. Also, the proposed new student union might provide another opportunity.


CONCERN: The University should invest in having motion activated bathroom faucets and toilet flushes.

RESPONSE: Our priority now is to address the backlog of deferred maintenance issues across campus. As restrooms are upgraded we will consider these features.


CONCERN: Regarding ATMs: (1) We should have a Chase bank ATM on campus. A lot of students have Chase because there aren’t any annual fees or late fees, or overdraft fees. (2) There should be multiple EECU and Golden 1 ATMs across campus so that it is convenient for students.

RESPONSE: Thank you for this suggestion. Chase Bank has not expressed interest in installing an ATM on campus. Please be advised that there is a new EECU ATM at Campus Pointe.


CONCERN: This University needs to find a way to remodel the Science 1 building and Engineering buildings for better quality labs and offices for faculty. The University needs to make a bond so the state can give state funds to remodel these buildings.

RESPONSE: We are investing $20 million over the next two years to address our deferred maintenance backlog around the campus. One of the priorities for investment is modernization of labs and classrooms. A statewide bond act requires approval by the Legislature and Governor.


CONCERN: Would it be possible to install some sort of shelving or table so that we can place items like coffee cups or water bottles there while using the restrooms?

RESPONSE: Several of the restrooms across campus already have this feature. Please submit this request via our online work order system and make clear which building and which restroom you are referring to and we will assess the feasibility. Click here to submit. We are in the process of investing in a backlog of deferred maintenance work and have had to prioritize our campus needs.


CONCERN: Can you guys please apply WD-40 on the doors? Students that are coming late to class distract the class with a very annoying screech sound coming from the door.

RESPONSE: We will forward to our Facilities Management team. It would be helpful if you could let us know if there is a specific door that is causing the disruption. This is best submitted via our online work order system. Click here to submit.


CONCERN: The lights in the Library appear to be on 24 hours a day. I work in the Library, and I have come in to campus late at night when we're closed to pick things up, and every single light in the building has been on. This includes weekends, holidays, hours when we're closed

RESPONSE: The lighting panel is currently down on the first floor and half of the second floor so the lights are on bypass which means they stay on 24/7. We are working on a solution. The other half of the second floor and floors three and four are operating normally, which means the lights go off at 1 or 2 a.m. and come back on at 5 a.m.


CONCERN: Recent re-paving of the Joyal Administration Building's parking lot resulted in a change to the driveway approach to the loading dock. The driveway now has different elevation heights instead of one smooth surface. A Plant Operations painter had to highlight the area with cautionary coats of yellow and red paint. Employees have tripped before and after the paint application.

RESPONSE: Thanks for bringing this to our attention. We will look at this to address this safety concern.


CONCERN: I am a graduate student of speech-language pathology. Our speech clinic that serves people from the local community is located on the second floor of the Professional Human Services building. Construction going on around our building during our summer clinic session made it difficult for our clients, many of whom are handicapped, to access our building. Additionally, none of the restrooms in our building has diaper changing tables. This is a change that wouldn't be costly or time consuming and would be greatly appreciated by all.

RESPONSE: We regret the construction was so disruptive. Thanks for your patience as the improvements are necessary in order to make our outdoor campus environment more accessible and usable. We will explore adding a diaper changing table in one of the restrooms in PHS. Thank you for your suggestion as we are continually striving to ensure we are providing a family friendly environment.


 

POSTED ON 8/25/16

CONCERN: Walking across lawn on campus, I see a man spreading chemicals on the grass. With the bee colonies and bats dying these days, could we use environmentally safe herbicides?

RESPONSE:  Fresno State is deeply committed to role-modeling responsible environmental practices in all that we do to maintain and operate our grounds and facilities.  Typically we fertilize the lawns three to four times per year with a nitrogen based fertilizer. Also we spray various products at times to control specific weeds that grow in the lawns. We do not apply any chemicals that are harmful to the bee population. We are especially sensitive to this issue given our proximity to the farm and our crops that rely on bees for pollination. Neither bats, other small mammals nor birds of any type are harmed by the products we use. Also, as one of our measures to conserve water during the drought, we apply a product to "open up" the soils so water gets to the root zone in compacted areas and another product is applied that helps the soil retain moisture in the root zone for the lawn.


CONCERN: We recently experienced a power outage in the Library in which the elevators ceased functioning. An employee who is handicapped had no way of reaching the ground floor. What is being done to assure handicapped employees of safe and reliable access to their offices and their cars when the elevators are down?

RESPONSE: We are terribly sorry to hear about this. The power did go out unexpectedly and impacted a portion of the Library for approximately 50 minutes.  However, other building elevators continued to be operational during the outage and access was available at all times during the outage.  In the future, if there is an emergency that of this sort where a person with a disability needs assistance, our Public Safety team can be called upon for help.


CONCERN: I noticed the old blue signs that say "J.E. O'Neill Park" are starting to look a little shabby - especially when compared to the new wayfinding signs. Are there any plans to do any new signs for O'Neill Park?

RESPONSE: We are exploring the opportunity to do a major upgrade and enhancement of J.E. O’Neill Park and new signage would be part of this plan.  However, in the interim, we can replace the existing signage.


CONCERN: The sidewalk between Conley Art and the Joyal parking lot has sprinklers that are still running at 6:45 a.m. Some of us like to get here early to make our coffee and open the doors for our students at 7 a.m. sharp. I suggest that they be turned off by at least 6:30 a.m.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. Recently, we installed a master irrigation controller that has helped to remotely identify leaks, broken sprinklers and overwatering. Our grounds team manages over 36,000 sprinklers to irrigate our 327-acre main campus and does its best to schedule watering to minimize disruption to students, staff and faculty.


CONCERN: I, along with multiple program heads, oversee summer residential programs on campus. With the heat reaching past 100 degrees during the lunch and dinner hour, our students eating at the Residence Dining Hall are having to wait in line stretching to the outside heat. It would be nice if they had shade.

RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion.


CONCERN: The Joyal north lobby women's bathroom is disgusting. It needs to be thoroughly cleaned every day. We see a lot of students on a regular basis. The janitor often goes in flushes, fills dispenser, takes out garbage and they call it good. Thorough scrubbing is needed.

RESPONSE: Thank you for letting us know.  We have asked our custodial team to check the restrooms more often.  We encourage all employees to use the online customer service request form maintenance requests. For emergency or urgent repairs such as flooding, leaks, broken windows, rooms too hot or cold, power outages, elevator issues or other problems which pose an immediate health, safety, or security risk, please call the Work Control Center at 278.2373.


CONCERN: Cross collaboration projects between the Jordan College and Lyles Engineering College, especially in the water arena, is needed. The UCs do this well. We can learn a thing or two and try to become a little more research orientated since Fresno State is so important to the southern San Joaquin Valley.

RESPONSE: The University is focusing on collaborative research across campus and water is one of our key areas with several collaborative water research projects currently underway. The latest edition of the Fresno State magazine highlighted a major research project between the Lyles College and the California Water Institute dealing with water desalination. A scan of ongoing collaborative research projects involving researchers from the Jordan and Lyles Colleges found six water related projects funded at $850,000. There is also collaboration in the area of Unmanned Aerial Systems where we have two dedicated labs – one in each of the colleges – that are used jointly.  As you point out, Fresno State is an important resource to the San Joaquin Valley and our newly restructured California Water Institute is designed to be the front door to the campus for water-related research and educational efforts.  We invite interested parties to contact the director of the institute, Dr. David Zoldoske at 559.298.2066 or  davidzo@csufresno.edu.


 

POSTED ON 6/29/16

CONCERN: Add changing tables into all the handicap restroom stalls, and if not all, at least the ones in the Library – men's and women's. Mothers and fathers should not have to change their child on a table or a counter. We especially should not have to leave and go to a different building in order to change our children. You've made gender inclusive bathrooms, so why not parent inclusive?

RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion. We will look into the feasibility of providing changing stations in high traffic buildings, including the Library. We do have them in some buildings currently.


CONCERN: Regarding faucets and sinks: the restrooms on the first, second and third floors on the west side of the Madden Library (toward the Laptop Lending center, the Blackboard center and the Media Center) only dispense hot water. There is no cold water in the faucet system/piping, even after adjusting the faucet levers. It is so hot that hands cannot be washed. It has been like this since the beginning of the semester and there is no sign around the faucets regarding the issue. The hot water can severely cause burns in sensitive people.

RESPONSE: Thank you for reporting this. We have informed the Library maintenance coordinator. Please contact Plant Operations at 278.2374 if the problem has not been resolved.


CONCERN: Why did the men's restroom on the third floor of the library become an all-gender restroom? When men are using the urinals and a woman walks in is it is very uncomfortable and disconcerting. I was slightly ashamed when three women walked in and I was standing at the urinal. I don't know these women and they were as embarrassed as I was. Please change this back to a men's restroom.

RESPONSE: This conversion was part of our commitment to a safe campus that supports and values all members of our community. The majority of our gender neutral restrooms are single stall and lock from the inside. We regret the embarrassing situation and will see what we can do to address this space. The gender inclusive restroom on the third floor of the library is the only multi-stall gender neutral restroom we have on campus. We will explore adding floor to ceiling stalls around each toilet and removal of urinals so that all users are comfortable.


CONCERN: Why are you modifying multiple campus restrooms to accommodate transsexuals? They make up less than 1 percent of the student population, yet you are making concessions for them at the expense of the vast majority. Do you have to share a bathroom with a transsexual? I bet not. Your time and energy could be better spent taking care of the majority populations on campus, instead of pandering to the loud minority and special interest groups.

RESPONSE: Fresno State strives to create and sustain a safe and inclusive campus environment that supports and values all members of our diverse campus community. National studies have shown that transgender students have expressed concern with harassment and emotional distress when using gendered restrooms. On our campus, we currently have five gender inclusive restroom locations (http://www.fresnostate.edu/president/pchre/across/neutral.html). We will be changing the signage for additional single-stall restrooms this summer that lock from the inside.


CONCERN: You responded previously to a concern about hot water in Joyal. Would you also kindly provide a small under-counter hot water heater for the women's restroom on the third floor of the Peters Business Building? I work on the third floor but often go to the second floor restroom because it contains one small under-counter hot water heater.

RESPONSE: Yes, we will identify if this is feasible, and if so, will have one installed in each women’s restroom in the Peters Business Building. It may not be completed until the sometime during the fall 2016 semester due to other priority projects already underway.


CONCERN: As of April 20 the water fountain near Taco Bell is broken. I have fixed it temporarily but it needs a permanent fix.

RESPONSE: Yes our Facilities Management team is aware. There may need to be a large investment soon to continue to operate this fountain. Stay tuned…it is definitely an important campus landmark with lots of important campus history.


CONCERN:Can you provide more charging stations at tables? Technology is changing, and most people are using laptops or tablets.

RESPONSE: Yes, we agree and when there are opportunities through renovation and modernization projects, we are adding more charging stations at tables.


 

POSTED ON 5/9/16

CONCERNS: Regarding all-gender restrooms. (1) I have a safety concern. A number of restrooms on campus have been converted to "all gender." If campus must have unisex bathrooms, please add new restrooms. Don't convert them, thus taking away existing restrooms from those who use them. Design unisex bathrooms to lock from the inside. Those unisex bathrooms that supposedly lock now often jam, so that they cannot be locked. This puts people at risk for sexual assault. Again, if you must have unisex restrooms, clearly mark them as unisex ("all gender" is meaningless), design them to be unisex and make them safe for use. They are not safe now, and they have not been designed to be. (2) I appreciate the University efforts at campus equality and inclusion. However I have a question regarding the placement of the "all-gender" restrooms. How were these locations decided upon and why were some men/ladies restrooms converted and their counterpart restroom was left the same, i.e. a ladies room turned into an all-gender restroom and the men's room 10 feet way left as a men's restroom. We need better locations for all-gender restrooms and the campus should be asked for input on those locations.

RESPONSE: Fresno State strives to create and sustain a safe campus environment that supports and values all members of our community. One aspect of creating a supportive environment is providing safe, accessible and convenient restroom facilities. There are currently five gender neutral restrooms available across campus. (http://www.fresnostate.edu/president/pchre/across/neutral.html) If there is a specific restroom door that jams or cannot be locked please report this to facilities management (http://cwweb.ad.csufresno.edu/AiMCSR) and we will have it fixed. We are working with the Cross Cultural and Gender Center to identify additional single-stall restrooms that can be identified as Gender Inclusive in an effort to provide additional locations in various campus buildings. For more information about our gender programs and services please contact ccgcgender@csufresno.edu.


 

POSTED ON 4/04/16

CONCERN: The hand dryers in the restrooms should be banned, especially those in the library. Research showed that the noise hand dryers make can lead to hearing loss.

RESPONSE: This option is preferred as part of our commitment to sustainability. We will have our Risk Manager evaluate noise level.


CONCERN: We need real toilet paper. What we have now is so cheap it breaks.

RESPONSE: Thank you for feedback. We will check with Procurement, as we may be required to purchase off of a system-wide CSU contract.


CONCERN: I would like to ask if the Joyal building could get hot water in the restrooms. Also, we are appreciative of the break room that was recently set up for the building, but there is an instant hot water heater under the sink that has never worked since it was installed. I have put in several work orders and nothing has been done. I don't think it's sanitary to have no hot water in either of these places.

RESPONSE: Thank you for reporting. We will have Plant Operations evaluate and repair the one in the break room. We will explore the feasibility and cost to add small under-counter hot water heaters in the men's and women's restrooms. Having hot water is restrooms is not a code requirement, but we understand many people prefer it.


CONCERN: Many classrooms show available in PeopleSoft but then turn out to be unavailable. Finding a classroom is much more difficult than before.

RESPONSE: We may not be clear about your comment. PeopleSoft is not the correct application to use to find available space on campus. One needs to go to 25Live at https://25live.collegenet.com/ to check any space on campus and its availability. PeopleSoft only captures academic events. 25Live captures all events – academic and non-academic.


 

POSTED ON 1/29/16

CONCERN: It would be fabulous to have heat in the Conley Art Building restrooms. Our students have the experience more like using an outside bathroom in a park (with the lack of heat and warm water to wash their hands) and not a premier college experience. After speaking with Plant Operations, I learned that when the building was built, heating was not included. Does this mean that we can never have heat? I have traveled to other buildings at times in the winter, when it is really cold, to just wash my hands in hot water and not freeze my tush off.

RESPONSE: We have good news! Thanks to funding support from President Castro, we will be investing approximately $20 million in deferred maintenance projects over the next two years. One of the priority projects is to replace the heating/ventilation/air conditioning units in the entire Conley Art Building. This is a project that will take some time but the investment is over $1 million to fix the existing antiquated system. Heat is on the way!


 

FACULTY

POSTED ON 09/19/18

CONCERN: There seems like an abuse of power in the professor community, and it gets worst each year. These past years the professors started to put this "If there is any discrepancy in any exam grade, you will have one week after the exam grade is posted on Blackboard to argue or question the given grade. After this date, this grade is essentially set in stone, after which you will have no more recourse. This also includes any future attempts to make-up or alter this grade after the fact." It gets worse by professors replacing the word "exam" with "assignment". This statement is not helpful for the student at all. Most professors will side with their opinion most of the time even though they were incorrect on the exam, so to get a dean to look into this issue will be over one week, and in that case the student is SOL. Instructors should not be allowed this type of power to make an irreversible grade when in fact the professor has made the mistake on the exam or assignment. Please fix this issue because it’s only getting worse for students.

RESPONSE: The University’s Policy and Procedure for Assigning grades (APM 242) notes that “Faculty members’ rights and responsibility to evaluate their students’ academic performance are some of the most strongly held values in the University. Faculty are accorded much latitude and freedom in setting standards, establishing expectations, evaluating performance, and assigning grades.” The University requires faculty to clearly identify “the weighting of assignments and examinations as well as the criteria for assigning grades, and the grading scale, identification of all requirements and due dates for course completion and eligibility for a final passing grade” in the syllabus (See APM 241). Additionally, APM 242 spells out the process for changing a grade, and contains the Policy and Procedures for Reviewing and Appealing an Assigned Grade, which provides students with direction on how to appeal any grade.


POSTED ON 06/20/18

CONCERN: I understand that it's OK for some courses not to have final exams. But shouldn't it be a procedure for faculty who decide not to give final exams to submit a request (with justification) and get approved by the chair and the dean?

RESPONSE: Yes. You are correct. APM 339 provides the mechanism for faculty to follow in order to not meet with their students during the assigned final-exam period. The policy does indicate that “any exceptions must receive written approval of the department chair and dean.” Additionally, APM 339 reads, “The general nature of the examination or final class meeting should be described in the course syllabus.”


CONCERN: Dear President Castro, I am writing to you as an academic. I am a Professor in Sociology at the University of California, San Diego. I want to express my support for Professor Randa Jarrar and my very strong hope that you and Fresno State University will support her academic freedom and resist the pressure from the right-wing mob that has been raised to a level of hysteria by Fox News. In these difficult political times, it is very important that universities are protected as places where unpopular and controversial views can be expressed. This sometimes does mean being 'disrespectful' toward figures of authority. That is part of the function of the intellectual in society and it is healthy for a democratic society. It is an important part of free speech and academic freedom. Professor Jarrar is a highly accomplished writer, intellectual, and teacher. The university exists to foster and protect creative, intelligent, and yes sometimes unpopular people (because they do not think like the mob) like Professor Jarrar. You should be proud to have a gifted and creative person like this on your faculty. I hope that you do right by her and protect her from the mob. This is your responsibility as President of the University.

RESPONSE: I appreciate you taking the time to write your support for Professor Jarrar. Even though I made it clear from the onset that I found the timing and tone of her tweets to be offensive and undermining our campus values of civil dialogue, I am also cognizant of the law that protects the private speech of public university employees.


CONCERN: As a faculty member, I hold class on the university-published finals day for my courses. More and more, I get complaints from students about this because, as they tell me, other faculty hold their finals on the last day of class, not during the scheduled time during finals week. There is a policy that faculty are to hold class during finals week, but it is clearly not upheld. I value using all of my instructional days and am beginning to resent that this “policy” is widely ignored by many faculty. Students don’t see that I value instruction, they see me as the “mean professor” who makes them come to class during a week that is purposely designed to wrap up the semester. How are you holding faculty accountable for this part of their teaching responsibility?

RESPONSE: First, thank you for adhering to the campus’ established policy (APM 339) and fulfilling your teaching responsibility. Each semester, the Provost’s Office sends a reminder to all faculty about the policy stipulation that faculty must meet with their students during the assigned final exam time. We encourage faculty to hold each other accountable for adhering to policies, and best practices, that are virtually impossible to monitor and “enforce” at the University level. The Workplace Quality Survey administered in Spring 2017 indicated that one of the areas we, as a campus, need to address is holding people accountable. I welcome any suggestions you have that may help us address your specific concern.


 

POSTED ON 04/30/18

CONCERN: Do we not hire professors who know how to teach minority students? English is my second language, and I often feel rejected by both white and brown professors. Are no one taught how to teach when they are studying their doctorates? How is the university training professors and TAs how to teach?

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. The University is deeply interested in selecting faculty who are able to teach all of our students. 

During the hiring process for tenure-track faculty, search committees are strongly encouraged to ensure faculty candidates understand the mission of Fresno State and the composition of our student population. All faculty candidates are required to articulate in their cover letters (initial application to a faculty position) a commitment to working with a diverse student population and faculty. Beginning next year, this statement of commitment to working with a diverse campus community will be separated from the overall cover letter. Secondly, at both the phone interview and on-campus interview stages, faculty candidates must articulate how they will work with a diverse student body. Virtually all tenure-track faculty on-campus search visits include a teaching demonstration. In this process, candidates give a brief teaching demonstration and student input is gathered. 

For tenure-track faculty positions, the University recruits from programs offering a terminal degree in the targeted discipline (e.g., public health, psychology, management, electrical engineering, music). In most cases, that means a doctoral degree, in some cases, the master’s degree is the terminal degree. Unfortunately, many doctoral (and master’s) programs do not “teach” possible faculty members how to teach. Beginning with New Faculty Orientation, the Center for Faculty Excellence offers faculty support to learn or enhance their teaching skills. This includes culturally responsive pedagogy. New Faculty Orientation is required for all new tenure-track faculty. All other faculty may take advantage of the extensive support provided by the Center for Faculty Excellence. 

Teaching Assistants receive different kinds of training. Many TAs, who are instructors of record, are required to take pedagogy or teaching courses. These experiences are designed to prepare TAs to be effective instructors. Currently, this training is provided by specific departments. The University is exploring the potential of providing training opportunities to all graduate students, including current TAs, who wish to develop their teaching skills. This skillset may be a value added to our graduate students who may want to apply to doctoral programs, apply for community college faculty positions, or simply for their own skill development. 


 

POSTED ON 03/09/18

CONCERN: I strongly suggest the department chair from the Department of Linguistics or other departments contact Dr. Steven Skelton, Communicative Sciences and Deaf Studies Department chair in advance when they make an arrangement with a presenter regarding ASL and Deaf Studies-related topics. It will give our department an opportunity to schedule with two sign language interpreters and provide full access to Deaf faculty members who want to attend and watch the presentation. Also, our Deaf Studies major students need to have the same privilege to watch and learn something regarding to ASL and Deaf Studies research-related topics.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your note. We have addressed this with the appropriate parties.


 

POSTED ON 01/16/18

CONCERN: Since your office admitted that a history professor’s contract goes until May of 2018 and you gave him a current assignment of converting his class to an online one. One could say that Fresno State reacted but did not deliver a consequence for behavior such as this from faculty. Fresno State may be seen as weak for not taking action to terminate this professor for his radical and hateful comments about a large percentage of this country including students at Fresno State who could have been taking his class. This behavior has made students with beliefs that differ from his feel that Fresno State is not offering a positive and inclusive learning environment. So unless things are done (such as firing him), some students will feel excluded and not included in a school that seems to talk about either diversity or sports. Please address the issue rather than facilitating this type of behavior for faculty by letting his contract run out and doing nothing.

RESPONSE: Fresno State understands the deep concerns that have been shared as a result of personal comments made by the professor. The University is taking this matter very seriously and handling it in accordance with applicable law, policy and the requirements of the faculty collective bargaining unit agreement.


CONCERN: Why is one of your professors still teaching there after his actions against free speech and the way he acted to your students?

RESPONSE: The University is handling this issue within the parameters of its personnel policies.


CONCERN: Professors need to improve their skills in better helping out students. There are those who are rude towards their students and nothing is done. I have had a bad experience with one professor who insulted me during class. Nothing was done against his behavior. Another professor is negative and feel his method is not helping out good enough. There are students who are high achievers and instructors feel intimidated this should honestly stop. The student has to be the bigger person. Instead of the professors helping students grow, why bring them down from their accomplishments?

RESPONSE: We take seriously our responsibility to provide students with an effective learning environment and are committed to the success of all of our students in the classroom. We encourage faculty to take advantage of professional development opportunities, and our Center for Faculty Excellence offers a number of faculty learning communities and programs that assist faculty in further developing their skills. Students should feel safe about speaking with the department chair when they have concerns. If the chair is the faculty member in question, then please contact the dean’s office.  


 

POSTED ON 09/14/17

CONCERN: Fresno State is taken advantage of by part-time lecturers. Our department relies on a high number of part-time lecturers who split their time teaching between Reedley College, Clovis Community College and Fresno City College. Fresno State has more and easily accessible resources for these lecturers use in their classrooms than at other campuses. Often times, I find these colleagues using the resources of Fresno State to make copies, coordinate off-campus committee work and take office hours for our students to grade and consult non-Fresno State student work instead. These part-time faculty know they are needed and our department higher ups are afraid to act out of fear of losing this needed part time help. We need more full-time lecturers and tenure track faculty because they are committed to us and not a number of departments elsewhere.

RESPONSE: The campus is actively working to increase the percentage of tenure track faculty. At the same time, we are grateful for the work performed by our part-time faculty and full time lecturers. I would hope that the use of Fresno State resources by part-time faculty to support their other jobs is a rare occurrence. I would expect that any of our department chairs would act to end such practices when they become aware of them. Please let your department chair know of your concerns. You may also share your concerns with Rudy Sanchez in the Office of Faculty Affairs.


 

POSTED ON 06/15/17

CONCERN: I am a new faculty member and really like the emails and communications received. The one area I may suggest for improvement is to ensure all professors take attendance and stick to the program policies. I had two students who were upset because I was monitoring their attendance in my course and went directly to the chair to express concern over this.

RESPONSE: We are aware that some programs have attendance policies and enforcement of those policies must be addressed by the program. The university policy which spells out student and faculty responsibilities is APM 232. A student’s first responsibility is to attend class and learn. The University expects students to attend all classes for which they are enrolled. Instructors may establish specific attendance regulations and make-up work policies governing their classes and must provide them to their students at the beginning of the semester.


CONCERN: So many students in the master’s counseling programs are stressing over professors rather than the work. Some are even scared to speak up because they fear retaliation on their papers. I had a professor last semester who picked on students and even made them cry. It was really intimidating to go to the class.

Another professor has a reputation of retaliation when we asked about our grades. I have reported this to my advisor, but nothing is done. If I had known this would be my education at a master's level, I would have gone elsewhere. There are so many students with the same thought, but fear to speak up.

RESPONSE: The Kremen School of Education and the Department of Counselor Education and Rehabilitation are aware of the concerns and have engaged in purposeful interventions on an ongoing basis at multiple levels. Those offices have provided support for students who have wished to come forward with their concerns.

In response to the second concern, fear of retaliation, the department chair has dealt with it decisively.


CONCERN: I am very frustrated with a professor who comes 20 minutes late every time we have class, which is only Monday and Wednesday. She has never been on time to this class and a lot of the students aren't doing so well in the class. I do not appreciate this.

RESPONSE: Please contact the department chair of the faculty member. If you need help identifying the chair of the faculty member, please contact the Vice Provost at 278.2636.


 

POSTED ON 05/08/17

CONCERN: As a faculty member who evaluates scholarship applications as part of my departmental service, I am very dissatisfied with the single "university scholarship application" students must use to apply for all campus scholarships. There are too many questions, most of them are irrelevant for most scholarships, and the evaluators do not have the ability to add questions more relevant to scholarships they are evaluating. Because applying for 15 scholarships simultaneously is so easy, many students apply for scholarships for which they are not actually qualified, adding to the enormous pool of people we have to sort through. Making a different scholarship application for each scholarship, although it seems like more work, would actually be much more efficient, for both the students and the evaluators. Each application could be concise and supply more useful information, asking questions that allow the student to best represent themselves and allow the evaluator to easily pinpoint quantitative and qualitative criteria to rank applicants. The result would be scholarships awarded to the most deserving students, better implementing the intent of the original donor.

RESPONSE: The Fresno State general scholarship application follows national best practice and is designed to simplify the application process for students. There are approximately 12 questions each student must answer. The application is designed to provide the scholarship committee reviewer with résumé style content of each applicant. Two of these questions require the student to provide additional information about themselves in a personal statement and a career objective statement. Once the scholarship application is submitted, this information becomes the student’s primary profile for all the scholarship opportunities he/she qualifies for.

After the scholarship application is submitted, the applicant may automatically qualify for certain scholarships simply based on their academic record. When additional information is required from the applicant to determine their eligibility, the student is recommended to consider applying for certain scholarships. Those scholarships have unique qualifications that require the student to answer certain questions in order to qualify for those scholarships. The scholarship requirements used to determine an applicant’s eligibility are based on the donor’s minimum criteria. It is important to note that it is illegal for Fresno State to change the minimum scholarship requirements a donor has defined by adding additional questions a committee feels are more relevant for their program. Departments are encouraged to contact the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships for help with strategies on managing the reviewing and ranking of applicants.


CONCERN: There are professors who don't use the technology offered in classrooms to better present information. Some professors’ writing on the board is so bad it's hard to read.

RESPONSE: Please share your concerns with the department chair or the associate dean of the college in which the course is taught. They can encourage faculty to take advantage of professional development opportunities offered through The Center for Faculty Excellence. The center provides holistic support to faculty with a core support team of instructional designers, faculty-driven learning communities, DISCOVERe faculty fellows, course redesign with technology and other faculty-driven activities. Many of these professional development opportunities occur both during the fall and spring semesters, as well as during the summer. Faculty are subject matter experts in their disciplines. However, they may choose to use more traditional means of instruction including whiteboards or document cameras.


CONCERN: Professors are teaching their own opinions and refuse to teach a neutral way of a subject to allow the students to generate their opinions of the subject. I have seen professors in many of my classes ask students if they have any questions with their backs to the students and then continue to move on as students have their hands raised. This usually goes on for the first week or two then students just give up and don't even try to ask questions.

RESPONSE: Faculty are hired based on their training and expertise in their discipline. This expertise has been honed through years of study and research. Faculty not only share what they have learned about a particular subject but also the “way of knowing” in that subject. Ideally, they would also structure assignments that provide students with opportunities to study the subject, apply what they have learned, and use critical thinking skills in coming to their own conclusions. If this is not happening in your course, I encourage you to meet with the department chair and share your concerns. If your faculty member is the chair, you can contact the Associate Dean in the college in which the department is housed.


CONCERN: Dr. Castro needs to look into students' complains about some faculty. The departments are not listening to students and they treat situations personally, not professionally. Yes, we are students but we are parents, husbands and wives, family members, employees in other companies … you name it. Life can be easier if we make it easier. We can be educated without being overloaded.

RESPONSE: Thank you for the feedback. I am sorry to hear of your experience. Your success as a student is very important to me and your college. The dean and associate dean of the college you provided will address your specific concerns with the department and your broader concerns with the entire faculty in the college. It is our goal to provide a supportive learning environment for all our students. I encourage you to continue to share your thoughts with your dean and associate dean.


CONCERN: Most of the government offices are improving their work by having certified management, like project management. Why don't we see that in our departments? A Ph.D. qualifies for technicality but doesn't qualify for teaching or managing. Why don’t we let professionals from other majors lead different majors for diversity of change? Why don’t we make a development unit for each section for technical professionals to improve their own sections?

RESPONSE: Faculty are hired based on their training and expertise in their discipline. This expertise has been honed through years of study and research. Faculty not only share what they have learned about a particular subject but also the “way of knowing” in that subject. The Center for Faculty Excellence provides holistic support to faculty with a core support team of instructional designers, faculty-driven learning communities, DISCOVERe faculty fellows, course redesign with technology and other faculty-driven activities to help them improve their teaching. Additionally, the university invests significant time and effort to provide professional development opportunities for all faculty and staff through its LEAD program https://www.fresnostate.edu/adminserv/learning/learn/.


 

POSTED ON 03/30/17

CONCERN: I feel as though many tenured faculty do their best to schedule classes and office hours on Tuesday/Thursday. The problem is that when students have classes during the T/TH time slots, office hours cannot be met. I understand the faculty like to condense their work days, but it helps to have a diverse selection of classes and office hours throughout the five-day work week.

I have an immense respect for faculty but sometimes trying to get extra help can be difficult because of this trend, and student success will probably increase if teacher immediacy is increased.

RESPONSE: Department chairs schedule courseswithin a set of constraints including room availability, faculty availability, number of courses the department needs to offer to meet student demand and the funding available to hire part-time faculty. Student demand is slightly higher for courses on TTh than on MWF and for courses scheduled from 9 a.m.-2 p.m.than early morning, late afternoon, or evening. Rooms are completely scheduled at the high demand times. Faculty may schedule their own office hours so long as they meet the required minimums. (see the policy at http://www.fresnostate.edu/academics/facultyaffairs/documents/338.pdf). If you have concerns about a particular faculty member’s office hours, please consult with the faculty to see how they might work with you.


 

POSTED ON 02/09/17

CONCERN: I've been at Fresno State for a few years now and in the past I have had some phenomenal teachers. This year I was blasted with narrow mindedness left and right. I had a teacher who made it clear that we were to accept her point of view or we could leave. I had to take this class to graduate. Frequently in this course some opinions were seen as fact. Very little about this course was objective. I care a great deal about my education and this class made me dread school frequently during the semester.

RESPONSE: I invite you to contact Provost Zelezny at 278.2636 directly with specific information about the course so she can follow up with you.


CONCERN: With the passing of Vince Petrucci, I fear that his legacy is in jeopardy. The department is in flux and in need of direction. Most recently, the Vince Petrucci Library, actually no more than a reading room, lost its librarian. Go to UC Davis and investigate for yourself their wine library collection. See for yourself the influx of money from KJ, Mondavi & Anheuser Busch and their research facilities. Note that UC Davis has now been granted the opportunity to sell their wines in the open marketplace. Fresno State Viticulture & Enology needs to be dynamic. Perhaps they can be the "go to" university for the Sierra Foothills wineries to count on as UCD has Napa, Sonoma and points north locked up, Cal Poly SLO has the Central Coast. We need to establish a presence in an area that does more than raisins and box wine.

RESPONSE: The work done by the late Professor Vincent E. Petrucci is indeed remarkable and transformational for Fresno State and the Central Valley. His legacy is not in jeopardy as several initiatives are already underway to assure that Fresno State will always recognize Professor Petrucci's contributions. Two endowments in Professor Petrucci's name are in place and continue to grow with support from the University. The Vincent E. Petrucci Library, while it does not have a librarian at this time, is being carefully stewarded by the Jordan College and the Henry Madden Library. Ms. Britt Foster, the former Petrucci Librarian, continues to provide service to the department as the STEM librarian. Our Viticulture and Enology Industry Advisory Board, with members from the breadth of the wine and grape industry (including members representing the largest wine makers in California) are extremely supportive and providing invaluable assistance to the department through this transition. I invite you to stay tuned as the Vincent E. Petrucci Legacy grows and thrives!


 

POSTED ON 01/04/17

CONCERN: I have been reading many of the forums from professors. I know there are many awesome professionals working at all of our state colleges. However, as a union representative for 20 years, I have only but one problem. That problem is the continued tenure of those teachers, who have no business in the classroom. Any instructor who continues to receive poor and awful ratings by more than 90% of their students, represents a problem. I have read many comments from faculty, not only from Fresno State, but also from many CSU's. I do understand the need to have qualified, educated professionals in our classrooms. However, as a veteran of 20 years in union negotiations, I have one problem. The problem is the continued tenure of professors who receive poor and awful reviews from peers, and mostly from students.

I think the union system is fine for salaries and benefits. However, I think that a teacher who receives continued awful reviews specifically from more than 90% of the students, needs progressive discipline, as well as retirement or non-renewal of contract."


RESPONSE: Faculty are required to provide opportunities for student input on their performance. Additionally, the university requires periodic peer review of faculty. When such reviews surface concerns, these are discussed with the faculty member and, where appropriate, progressive discipline is undertaken.


CONCERN: For the past several years I have served on various faculty hiring committees, and have been appalled at the lack of speed with which Faculty Affairs processes the materials submitted to them. In order to hire the best candidates for open positions, we need to remember that hiring is very much a seasonal endeavor. It is difficult to compete with comparable schools for the same candidates if we don't publicize our positions until months after they do. We simply cannot have Faculty Affairs shooting us in the foot by taking 6-8 weeks to turn around the materials submitted to them by search committees.

RESPONSE: We recognize that the number of searches conducted this past year put a strain on resources in the Office of Faculty Affairs. Changes are being made to remedy this.


CONCERN: In the spring 2016 semester, I was taking a History 12 class and the professor announced that we would not be covering feminism. The fact that professors at Fresno State are not educating the students about feminism is actually quite alarming to me. The second thing that makes me even more concerned, is that about half the women I talk to, even on campus, say, "oh, I am not a feminist" because they mistakenly believe that feminism is about promoting only females. This is something they should have been educated on. This needs to be addressed. I understand you can't micromanage everything in the college at once, and were probably very unaware of the situation. Thank you for your time.

RESPONSE: As you noted, History 12 is a survey course that covers a broad swath of United States history – 1877 to the present – and inevitably instructors cannot touch on everything that took place or emerged in that period. The vast majority of the approximately 20 sections of History 12 that the Department of History offers each semester do indeed cover both feminism and the women’s rights movement. In addition, each year we teach at least eight sections of History 101 (Women in History), an upper-division GE class that goes into these topics in even greater depth. It is also worth noting that the Department of History has five tenured faculty members who specialize and regularly teach courses in women’s history.


 

POSTED ON 11/3/16

CONCERN: Allow lecturers and other non-tenured faculty to pay for their parking passes using payroll deductions. Currently, only tenured faculty are allowed to have the cost of parking passes deducted from their monthly pay.

RESPONSE: We have explored this in the past, but there are some limitations due to our payroll processes. We will explore if other CSU campuses are able to accommodate this.


CONCERN: My request for a publication fee of $400 for publication of two peer-review journal papers based on my research conducted at Fresno State was denied by my dean. Every college should have a fund set aside similar to the fund for research travel or professional development for faculty/staff for publication fee for the publications of peer-review papers in the journals instead of getting it only from faculty member’s return indirect and/or research travel fund.

RESPONSE: College/school support of faculty research is determined by the individual college/school. Most colleges/schools have a faculty committee that has this within their purview. I encourage you to work with the relevant committee in your college/school on this issue.


CONCERN: Dr. Castro mentioned that Fresno State hired 69 faculty members this year. As a search chair last year, I experienced the incredible amount of work needed to hire one faculty member. As we continue to hire more faculty, the next logical step would be faculty retention efforts. One potential avenue to encourage retention would be incentivizing early tenure. In keeping the Be Bold vision, Fresno State would benefit from a more aggressive plan for early tenure to retain outstanding faculty at Fresno State.

RESPONSE: I am grateful to all of our campus and community members who assisted in recruiting the largest cohort of tenure-track faculty in a very long time to our campus. I am also heartened by the incredible diversity of this cohort of faculty. The retention of tenure-track faculty is highlighted in our new strategic plan. The current process and criteria for early tenure is part of the Academic Policy Manual. I support the consultative process and should the Academic Senate determine that this is a priority, the administration will participate in the conversation.


CONCERN: I find it unfair for a professor to curve the class in a bad way, making it more difficult to pass. 74% is a low C? 73% is a D? It's unfair when working in groups that are lacking in team power.

RESPONSE: Faculty are genuinely concerned about student learning and are careful to create a course that facilitates learning in a manner that they believe is appropriate for their discipline. Assessment of learning is usually unique to a course. The 90/80/70/60 traditional split is neither a mandate nor a guideline, it is a tradition followed by faculty at some universities. Individual effort in courses with group projects is uniquely difficult to assess. For example, in a course with 40 percent of the grade determined by group projects and attendance, an individual could fail every exam (earn less than 50%) show up for class, choose to not participate in any of the group work and depending on the group and its willingness to let the particular student slide, receive a C in the course. In such a course, it would not only be unfair to students who studied and did the work required to earn a passing grade, it would make it difficult for students who do not learn the material to be successful in future courses. If you are concerned about the grading methodology used in a particular course, I encourage you to discuss it with the faculty member.


CONCERN: I, along with my fellow lecturers, lost half my classes (and half my income) three days before school started because 20 percent of the first-year writing courses were cut and classes had to be reassigned. We are half way through week two [at this writing] and we are still all teaching without contracts, showing our continued commitment to Fresno State. What changes are you going to make in the future to show commitment to your lecturers and prevent such negligence affecting our lives so severely in the future?

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this concern to my attention. There are a number of offices that need to coordinate in order to process temporary faculty contracts. We are aware that there were some challenges this fall. The appropriate offices are currently working to avoid this problem in the future.


CONCERN: Like many faculty members at Fresno State, I participate in various initiatives and professional development activities. Some of these activities offer a stipend. It's a wonderful surprise to receive an unannounced check or direct deposit stub some months later! The problem is that these stubs provide no specific information about where the money came from or to which activity it corresponded. It would be so much easier to keep track of stipends paid (and other monies owed by the University) if relevant information were included on pay stubs, rather than only the internal accounting codes that nobody seems able to decipher.

RESPONSE: Thank you for raising this issue. We will review the process for additional pay to find ways to improve the paper flow and feedback to the faculty, departments and colleges.


 

POSTED ON 8/25/16

CONCERN: I would like you to bring back the University testing center. As a faculty member, it is a major problem not having it available. I know that I had students cheating during finals. It would be beneficial for the students, too. They can have more time at the University testing center and they are not so physically close.

RESPONSE:  Thank you for expressing your opinion.  I have listened carefully to all views on this topic and I want you to know that virtually everyone I hear from is relieved that we have paused on the prior use of the university testing center.  I would suggest that you work with your department chair and Dean to identify a suitable testing space and proctors, if necessary, to help address your concerns about the risks of cheating.  Recently, I charged a task force to provide advice regarding how to improve testing services in the future.  The report was shared with me this summer. I am working closely with the Provost and Vice President for Student Affairs to review the report's recommendations and determine our next steps.


CONCERN: Cross collaboration projects between the Jordan College and Lyles Engineering College, especially in the water arena, is needed. The UCs do this well. We can learn a thing or two and try to become a little more research orientated since Fresno State is so important to the southern San Joaquin Valley.

RESPONSE: The University is focusing on collaborative research across campus and water is one of our key areas with several collaborative water research projects currently underway. The latest edition of the Fresno State magazine highlighted a major research project between the Lyles College and the California Water Institute dealing with water desalination. A scan of ongoing collaborative research projects involving researchers from the Jordan and Lyles Colleges found six water related projects funded at $850,000. There is also collaboration in the area of Unmanned Aerial Systems where we have two dedicated labs – one in each of the colleges – that are used jointly.  As you point out, Fresno State is an important resource to the San Joaquin Valley and our newly restructured California Water Institute is designed to be the front door to the campus for water-related research and educational efforts.  We invite interested parties to contact the director of the institute, Dr. David Zoldoske at 559.298.2066 or  davidzo@csufresno.edu.


 

POSTED ON 6/29/16

CONCERN: I know you can do better for faculty evaluations. How the evaluations are set up right now is terrible. There are zero incentives to give honest answers, and there are more consequences by giving negative feedback. Please use email to do evaluations or have at least a cover page to hide the answers.

RESPONSE: The purpose of an assessment is to help faculty and programs improve. We recognize the need for a comprehensive faculty evaluation system -- including input from both students and faculty colleagues. Currently IDEA, a student rating instrument, is used as a part of the overall faculty evaluation system and appears to be your focus. It measures a student’s learning experience in a particular course and provides a mechanism for students to provide feedback that may be used to improve the teaching and learning. The University is currently assessing the value of IDEA. In fall 2016, a working group will be formed to discuss assessment needs, identify and review other alternatives and select potential vendors. We invite faculty to participate on this process and welcome your input in identifying and developing best practices in faculty evaluation.


 

POSTED ON 4/4/16

CONCERN: There should be some programs or assistance to help faculty spouses with job searches, including on-campus jobs. The living cost in Fresno makes it difficult for a family with only one income source. It also helps improve faculty retention.

RESPONSE: The Office of Faculty Affairs is actively exploring options to help with faculty spouse/partner job searches.


CONCERN: Fresno State needs to do a better job of making sure that professors are doing all they can to help students achieve success. Do not provide professors with raises until they begin to show a real passion for teaching. There are too many professors and staff that only show up for a paycheck, specifically, in the chemistry department.

RESPONSE: Teaching is a high priority at Fresno State and teaching experience and ability is the most important factor we consider in our hiring and retention decisions for faculty. All faculty are regularly evaluated on their teaching, including through student ratings of instruction and through peer evaluations. However, that doesn't mean that there aren't occasionally problems. If you have concerns about a particular faculty member, please bring this to the attention of the department chair.


 

POSTED ON 1/29/2016

CONCERN: As tenure/tenure-track faculty, especially junior faculty, we are required to engage in research, apply for (and obtain) grants, present at conferences, and publish in top journals in our field. For many of us, the reason we were hired is precisely because we are good at research and contribute to the body of knowledge in our discipline. Research is a requirement for us to both obtain and keep our position at Fresno State, yet, there is no time allocated in our workload in the APM for research. We teach a 4-4 and we have service requirements, and those are both accounted for in the APM, yet we also have the requirement of research and publication and the University does not officially recognize this in the APM, nor allocate any of our normal time to this endeavor. If Fresno State wants to continue to carve out a path as an emerging research university, shouldn't they encourage research by officially allocating a portion of t/t faculty time toward this endeavor? Are there any plans to move toward a 3-3 teaching load?

RESPONSE: The University provides support in the form of reassigned time for new tenure track faculty for several semesters to assist them in getting their research and scholarship activities underway. Research, scholarly and creative activity support in the amount of $700,000 to $800,000 annually has been provided to the colleges/schools which use their own processes to determine how that funding is allocated. The hope is that faculty will be able to use these dollars to develop ongoing funded research programs. Additionally, the Office of Research & Sponsored Programs (http://www.fresnostate.edu/academics/grants/ ) provides support to faculty pursuing external grants, which often include funding for reassigned time. The office helped with awards totaling over $38 million during the 2014-15 year. Any changes in teaching loads would be negotiated by the Chancellor’s office with the California Faculty Association.


CONCERN: As one of Fresno State’s alumni, I encouraged my son to attend Fresno State for his undergraduate work. I received a quality education that provided me the basis for a rewarding career. My son is NOT receiving a similar education. One of my biggest concerns is the lack of professionalism on the part of his instructors. He is in his third year at Fresno State and every semester his teachers cancel many of the class sessions. It is common for him to have as many as 5-7 sessions cancelled for one class! I feel he is not receiving the instruction that we pay for. I am also very tired of the syllabus rhetoric. Often the teachers change their minds and shift assignments at will. He has had teachers that never refer to the syllabus and others who never mention tests in class because “they are on the syllabus.” If you really want the students to look at and follow the syllabus, then your professors need to be following them as well. Finally, I find staff referring to my son in class as a “dumbass" as totally unprofessional. His current history professor has used this term more than once. If your staff wishes to be respected, they need to show some respect themselves.

RESPONSE: The University expects faculty to maintain high standards of professional behavior both in and outside the classroom. (See the policy on faculty rights and responsibilities at http://www.fresnostate.edu/academics/facultyaffairs/documents/apm/336.pdf .) The issues you raise are troubling violations of this policy. Please contact Dr. Xuanning Fu, dean of Undergraduate Studies, at 559.278.4468, so we can follow up.

FOOD

POSTED ON 09/19/18

CONCERN: What exactly is Fresno states position on food safety? How does it maintain a safety program when anyone is allowed on the campus farm, at any time, with animals (dogs)? How has FSMA Food Safety Modernization Act been implemented on your farm? If FSMA has been implemented then who is in charge of compliance? I read through the president’s commission on ag and it only mentions dissemination of food safety information. Are there any food safety classes? Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions. Go Dogs.

RESPONSE: Fresno State’s position on food safety is that it is a critical part of the academic curriculum in several programs, and it is a high priority for both the campus foodservice operations and the University Agricultural Laboratory (farm). In the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology, the Department of Food Science and Nutrition integrates food safety into most all of the food science courses offered. The department offers FSM 60 Food Safety for Foodservice Professionals and FSC178 - Food Laws, Regulations, Inspection, and Grading. In the latter course, FSMA certification training in "Preventive Controls for Human Food" is included. Also, HACCP certification training taught by Dr. Erin Dormedy has been provided annually through the San Joaquin Section of IFT to industry attendees as well as our students. The Departments of Animal Sciences and Agricultural Education and Viticulture and Enology also integrate food safety into the curricula for their meat science and enology courses. A new course, ASCI 175 - Ag Food Safety Systems explores food safety systems from farm to fork. Students successfully completing the course are eligible to become HACCP certified. The Institute for Food and Agriculture, also part of the Jordan College, offers food safety training to industry employees and is expanding to include Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) courses as well. On the farm, we have the same food-safety requirements as any other farm in the state.  The farm staff are required to attend produce safety training and are responsible for the food safety-related aspects of crops grown in each unit. The farm also follows all mandated testing, inspections and reporting.

Being situated in the city, people often come to the farm with their pets but have no knowledge of the risk that their animals pose. Animals are a food-safety concern on all farms whether the animals are domesticated or wild. The farm follows food safety guidelines by inspecting fields during the season and prior to harvest. Results of these inspections are used to make risk-based decisions on what can or cannot be harvested. The Farm Manager and the Office of the Dean for the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology are responsible for ensuring compliance with FSMA on the farm.


CONCERN: When I put on an event the last thing I am thinking about is to tweet that there is left over food. Usually I don't even have my phone. Would like to recommend that catering give the event organizer a handout at the event that they can fill out and give back to the serving staff acknowledging that they are ready to have a Tweet go out to the students. This way food doesn't go wasted and it is one less thing that the busy event organizer doesn't have to try and fit in at the end of the event.

RESPONSE: Thank you. A lot of events do not have catering wait-staff in attendance, so we ask that you call 278-FOOD and advise as to the event location and when students can begin coming in. A notification will then occur through the Catered Cupboard app. Catering contracts include the phone number and instructions for “Catered Cupboard” and some event coordinators include notification to the Catered Cupboard on their event check-off list. Information on the Catered Cupboard can be found at http://www.fresnostate.edu/studentaffairs/foodsecurity/catered-cupboard.html.


CONCERN: I've noticed that some offices buy snacks to hand out to students. It seems very costly when you are buying from Save Mart or Smart and Final. I don't know if it would be feasible, but can departments who are feeding students regularly get snacks from the Food Pantry? The Food Pantry could ask the departments who use the services to track what they are giving so that the numbers will count toward the statistics that they keep.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. Unfortunately, we are not able to take our limited supplies/budget and spend them across campus. Also, most of the foods we give out at the Student Cupboard are in larger servings/sizes, not likely suitable as snacks. We appreciate your concern and suggestion.


POSTED ON 06/20/18

CONCERN: I was disappointed when the Food Court and Kennel Bookstore were closed for Spring Break. What about those of us who are working that week and we want a snack, drink or food? 

Some of us don't have the time to go off campus to get a bite to eat, some of us forget to bring our lunch and some don't want to leave campus. I feel that at least one or two of our venues at the Food Court should be open for our convenience as well. The bookstore should definitely be open.

Also, what ever happened to the suggestion of the campus working summer hours during Spring Break? Someone suggested it last year sometime and the response was it would be looked into.

RESPONSE: Dining Services always has at least one retail dining option during spring and summer breaks. The Kennel Bookstore was open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. during Spring Break, and Starbucks was also open. Historically, the volume of transactions that week is very low due to student and employee schedules. Information on campus dining hours of operation during breaks can be found on University Dining Services’ website http://www.auxiliary.com/diningservices/hours.html. Don’t forget that Campus Pointe has a number of local dining options that are open as well during these times.

Thank you for the follow-up question related to campus employees working summer hours over the spring break. It was determined that this schedule prior to the end of semester may be problematic in serving the operational needs of our campus community. However, supervisors/managers have the option during that week to allow for some level of schedule flexibility provided each office has at least minimal coverage during our regular operating hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.


 

POSTED ON 04/30/18

CONCERN: Fresno State catering is wonderful, but I'm hoping some of the rules can be evaluated. If you order anything from catering, the leftovers are disposed of after 2 hours, regardless of what it is. Catering will not let us keep anything including bread, cracker, cookies and other dry goods. I understand that you cannot keep perishable goods for food-safety issues, but it seems wasteful to throw out the dry goods within 2 hours. It seems that especially on our campus where a huge emphasis is being placed on food security, wasting food seems inappropriate.

RESPONSE: I appreciate your concern for food waste. Our catering department must adhere to strict County Health Department regulations, which state that food can only be left out for two hours; after that, the potential for food-borne illnesses increases significantly. 

Additionally, once the food has been out on a buffet line, it is no longer eligible for donation to outside entities. We do encourage event coordinators to call the Catered Cupboard 30 minutes before their event ends so that a notification can be sent to students letting them know food is available. 

Information on the Catered Cupboard can be found at http://www.fresnostate.edu/studentaffairs/foodsecurity/catered-cupboard.html 


CONCERN: There needs to be better and healthier selection of food items on the Bulldog Bites food truck. I suggest you fill the empty display shelves with ready-to-eat sandwiches, salads and/or boxed lunches so people can grab and go. There also needs to be an additional third worker during the lunch hour to expedite orders. With one person as the cashier and the other cooking, it really increases the wait time.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. We have a number of healthy grab-n-go items at our Paws-N-Go locations. We continue to increase the number of healthy menu items in our campus dining concepts. In the fall 2018 semester, The Bucket will be adding a new Healthy Menu. If you have a specific dietary restriction and would like more information about any of the menu items offered at our various campus dining concepts, please contact Megan Sarantos in University Dining Services at 278.4345 or via email msarantos@csufresno.edu.


 

POSTED ON 03/09/18

CONCERN: I am concerned for all students who use the student cupboard. I and many other students have discovered our food to be expired, open or even to contain bugs (dead and/or alive). I recently obtained a box of biscuit mix and upon opening it discovered a few live bugs crawling around in it and on further inspection I found the shells of many dead weevils. I almost missed seeing the weevil shells due to their color matching that of the mix. After posting about it on Facebook several other students expressed similar situations including the mac and cheese, rice a roni, spaghetti and rice. Thank you for reviewing this and trying to figure out a solution to this.

RESPONSE: As orders and donations come through, the Student Cupboard staff carefully review items before they go out onto the shelves to make sure that they are not past an expiration date. Items that are past expiration or are damaged are thrown out. We also regularly check the stock on the shelves to make sure it can be distributed. We do have items on our shelves that are past a best-by date, but the Coordinator has checked with the manufacturer of these items to make sure they are still safe for consumption. Most items may be used up to 6 months past a best by date, and others can go as much as 2-3 years past a best-by date (ex: spices, pasta, rice, etc.). One item that is never allowed on the shelves past a best-by date (per food safety) is baby food, so the staff carefully mark and check these items on a very regular basis to make sure they do not go out. For anyone who experiences food they believe to be spoiled or related issues, please contact program coordinator, Jessica Medina, at 559-278-0866 and/or stop by the Student Cupboard during open hours.


CONCERN: University Catering -- It would be wonderful if they could begin putting labels on the food they deliver. Many community member, faculty & staff have dietary restrictions and the information would be extremely helpful.

On another note, their plates (large hard plastic) are very hard to fit through the Satellite Student Union trash cans. If the trash cans cannot be replaced, catering should consider paper plates or bringing a big trash when catering to events in the Satellite Student Union.

RESPONSE: Thank you. University Catering strives to accommodate special dietary requests for employees and community visitors, and we label these accordingly (gluten free, vegetarian, etc.). Regarding the trash cans at the SSU, we will work with Student Affairs and the Student Involvement staff to ensure that the receptacles are large enough to accommodate the trash.


 

POSTED ON 01/16/18

CONCERN: As a graduate student in the Kremen School of Education, a majority of our classes run from 4PM to 6:50PM then 7PM to 9:50PM. Many of my fellow classmates have classes back to back so we rely on the snack bar down in the atrium. I noticed it closes at 6PM, and many of us want to buy food before another long class. Can you please look into extending the hours for that specific snack bar to 7PM? or 7:30PM? We would greatly appreciate it.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. Our campus retail dining operations are self-sustaining operations and the operating hours for our operations are based upon demand and financially being able to at least break-even due to food and labor costs. However, we will evaluate the current operating hours for this location to see if any adjustments can be made.


CONCERN: Can we make sure that the dining options at Fresno State (especially subway) do not use the same knife to cut sandwiches? I have a really bad food allergy to seafood and had a really bad reaction while eating one of the sandwiches. Cross contamination can kill someone!

RESPONSE: Thank you and we will most certainly remind all of our dining employees to use proper food handling and safety practices. All of our dining supervisors are ServSafe trained.


 

POSTED ON 01/04/17

CONCERN: I don't get why the Fresno State Library does not let us eat on the tables in certain areas. I was eating a burrito and was told to move down to the second floor or put away my food.

RESPONSE: After we opened the Library with an "eat anywhere" policy in place, we got repeated complaints from studying students about how disruptive the smells of cooked food were in all corners of the library. Given our job is to provide the most inviting and proper atmosphere to study for the most number of students, and given the number of complaints about cooked food we received over several years, we have restricted all prepared food to the second floor. We also found our custodians could not keep up with cleaning 8 acres of building where every corner was filled with food trash.


CONCERN: Being a biology graduate student, I spend most of my time in the laboratory. We need to have more vegetarian (vegan) options in the food court so that we do not have to go off-campus for vegetarian food.

RESPONSE: We endeavor to offer a variety of menu items at our various retail dining concepts. Bulldog Express has a stop at Campus Pointe which also offers a number of additional dining options. We agree that we need to continue to evaluate the opportunity to add more vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free menu items, but in some cases we are limited by the national franchises (i.e. Panda Express, Subway, Taco Bell, etc.). If you have a particular menu item suggestion, please email Ms. Debbie Guill, Dining Services manager, at debbieg@csufresno.edu


CONCERN: There should be gluten-free options in campus food.

RESPONSE: We continue to increase the number of healthy menu items including gluten-free options. If you have a specific dietary restriction and would like more information about any of the menu items offered at our various retail concepts, please contact Ms. Debbie Guill at University Dining Services at 278.3904.


 

POSTED ON 11/3/16

CONCERN: It would be nice to add a couple of more food places to eat at the USU. A hamburger joint would be nice, and maybe some sushi.

RESPONSE: We are always exploring alternative dining options and expect to have a national burger concept shortly at Campus Pointe. However, don’t forget about the great burgers available at The Bucket!


 

POSTED ON 6/29/2016

CONCERN: Provide food at a low cost. Currently Taco Bell is the only service that has a dollar menu.

RESPONSE: There are several affordable retail dining options across campus. Please know we strive to keep our prices affordable while at the same time our Dining Services operation is required to be self-supporting and with minimum wage and food cost increases, we cannot absorb those increases and continue to increase in new facilities and new food concepts.


 

POSTED ON 4/4/2016

CONCERN: Catered Cupboard seems to be an amazing idea, however, nobody I've spoken with knows how it is implemented or even if it is up and running. Why is Fresno State advertising a service for students that is not being implemented? What is holding Catering back from implementing Catered Cupboard?

RESPONSE: The Catered Cupboard has pushed out several notifications for after-event guests since officially launching in October. Although we have been experiencing technical difficulties for iPhone users receiving notifications, we are currently working with IT and the app company to find a resolution. In the meantime, we continue to push notifications for Android users, as well as send notifications for events through our Twitter account.


 

POSTED ON 1/29/2016

CONCERN: Fresno State needs to make fresh, healthy food as affordable and accessible as the soda pop it sells! Has anyone considered bringing refrigerated vending machines to campus? These vending machines can contain dairy products, vegetables and fruits (produced on campus) and could be placed in every building at this university. This would make it much easier for students/faculty/staff to make healthy food choices. Walking across campus to the Food Court or Paws-N-Go market is often not an option for students for many reasons, including not enough time between classes, breaks for three-hour classes are often only 10 minutes or less, and hours of operation for these locations are limited.

RESPONSE: Great suggestion. We have the ability with our current vending contractor Canteen to bring in vending machines that offer healthy and fresh food items. Please know we also sell fresh fruit in the USU Snack Bar which is located in the center of campus and which is open late in the evening. If there is a particular building vendor you would like us to replace, please contact University Dining Services at 559.278.3904.

PARKING

POSTED ON 09/19/18

CONCERN: I want to express my concern about parking tickets. I am a staff member here at Fresno State and recently received a parking ticket because my monthly pass was not visible. I understand that it was my error, my pass was in my center console (on the weekends I remove my pass from my mirror). My concern is that the ticket is $50, where a monthly pass is only $15 and a day pass is $3. If the traffic officer had enough time to take 5 pictures of my vehicle and upload them into his/her system, don't they have enough time to call the number on file for the license plate. I was a 2 minute walk away and could have easily shown that the pass was in my car. Additionally, I park in the same spot every day and have a unique vehicle, the officer obviously knew I owned a parking pass.

RESPONSE: Fresno State operates a pay-and-display parking permitting system. Because parking permits are transferable between vehicles, they are not directly tied to specific license plates. Citations may be appealed at www.pticket.com/fresnostate as we recognize that situations such as this may occur unintentionally. It is recommended that you also include a copy of your permit with your appeal.


CONCERN: Last month I submitted a question that was answered and I was hoping to get some follow up. The question was about parking and options for staff who have alternate work schedules. The response was that there is additional parking available at the Save Mart Center North Lot and there is a drop off/pick up for the Bulldog Express shuttle. My follow up question is, the shuttle stops pick ups/drop offs at 10pm and the staff in my area will need a shuttle at midnight or 12:30am. So this won't be an option. Any other options?

RESPONSE: I appreciate the clarification of your concern. Employees can call 278.8400 to request a safety escort to accompany them to their destination. There is not enough demand to warrant operation of Bulldog Express shuttles after 10 p.m.


CONCERN: We need more electric car charging stations. The ones we have area full, most of the time during normal working hours (when school is in session). The next stations should be on the North side of campus, near Science II, preferably (in my opinion).

RESPONSE: We recognize demand has increased for our Electric Vehicle Charging (EVC) stations. We are currently pursuing funding opportunities to add more EVC stations and evaluating potential locations on the west side of campus.


CONCERN: Overnight parking, on campus, seems like it could be done better. Some of our students go on camping trips and have to make arrangements to park on the opposite side of the campus (in dorm parking), or pay for a special overnight permit. Having another overnight parking lot would be ideal, specifically, one on the North side of campus, near Science II.

RESPONSE: Overnight parking for active permit holders is authorized in parking lot P27 (Dorm lot) due to the Police Department's ability to safeguard vehicles during overnight hours.     


CONCERN: There needs to be some kind of warning or cheaper parking ticket for first time offenses, or a way to prove that you have a permit but forgot it. As a college student, I don't have a lot of money to be throwing away. I had to use another car over the weekend, forgot my permit in that car, and on the first day of finals week got slapped with a $50 ticket. If I was stupid enough to park in plain sight without a permit, I probably deserve that ticket. But I was obviously not trying to get out of using a permit, and I could have easily spent $3 on a day pass had I remembered that. The price I had to pay for simply forgetting a little green piece of plastic is ridiculous and the system needs changing.

RESPONSE: Fresno State operates a pay-and-display parking permitting system. Because parking permits are transferable between vehicles, they are not directly tied to specific license plates. Citations may be appealed at www.pticket.com/fresnostate as we recognize that situations such as this may occur unintentionally. Please include evidence of your paid parking permit with your appeal.


POSTED ON 06/20/18

CONCERN: Parking at Fresno State is challenging most days. If you have an alternate work schedule, it's near impossible to find parking and makes it difficult to park on campus and be on time to your job (you end up being 10 minutes later or 30-40 minutes early, which is not ideal). My suggestion is to let employees purchase parking spaces as deans can do. I would be willing to pay monthly or per semester an increased fee to guarantee that I will have a parking space when coming to work. I know this is already done for deans, but I was hoping a similar program can be done with staff. Please help make parking at work easier!

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern and suggestion. Our campus parking lots and roadways serve more than 3,000 employees and nearly 25,000 students. At this time, the option to purchase reserved parking permits is limited to the President’s Cabinet and our School/College Deans due to their position requirements. We encourage employee carpooling, and there is also additional parking available at the Save Mart Center North Lot that has a convenient drop off/pick up location for our Bulldog Express shuttle.


CONCERN: The parking lot in front of Education Building should be improved. Some cars parked more than 30 minutes and some parked in the middle of a big space. Lines should be drawn. It's also annoying to see big pickups parked in the small lot, making it difficult for other cars to move quickly.

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this to our attention. This area gets congested at peak times. Our Director of Parking and Transportation will review possible options for adding lane lines in the 30-minute parking area. Parking is enforced on a regular basis, including those vehicles not complying with 30-minute parking or if they have not parked within parking lines.


 

POSTED ON 04/30/18

CONCERN: The shuttle system is awesome! One suggestion that I really hope you will consider, which I believe will make the lives of a number of students much easier, is to include one more bus stop for the shuttle that is near the Science I or Science II buildings. Almost all students will attend at least one class at Fresno State for either their major (math, business, chemistry, biology, nursing, the natural sciences, etc.) or general education in the following buildings: Craig's School of Business, Science I, or Science II. While I appreciate the shuttle system for simply existing, I really think many students will benefit from having a bus stop near one of these buildings.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. Our Traffic Operations staff will review the feasibility of adding an additional stop. Our goal is to maintain 20-minute wait times.


CONCERN: The other day, I have returned to work from doctor’s appointment around 10 a.m. I was driving around parking lots 30 and 31 for over 30 minutes trying to find a space to park. I was lucky that day because someone finally left and I got the spot. However, another 4 cars were still driving in circles while I was walking back to the office. This situation happens all the time. We can’t go on the lunch break or to appointments around noon because the parking is packed when we come back and it’s impossible to find a space. Are there any plans to improve this situation? Any plans to build a multilevel parking or maybe expand the parking to the unused amphitheater space?

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern, I know it is frustrating to have to wait for parking to become available. Our campus parking lots and roadways serve more than 3,000 employees and nearly 25,000 students, and there are certain times of day when we do experience congestion. We encourage employee carpooling and there is also additional parking available at the SaveMart Center lot with free connections to campus using the Bulldog Express.


 

POSTED ON 03/09/18

CONCERN: I suggest removing the two "Communications Only" parking stalls in the Keats lot if the P.D. cannot be fair in the enforcement of them. Finding an available parking spot is always a problem at certain times of the day. Apparently traffic enforcement also thinks it's an ethical practice to fine a media/communications employee $40 for having approval (and a valid parking pass displayed) to park in that area but our managers get away with parking there - sometimes all day - with no consequence. I was told "a special pass also needs to be displayed in conjunction with a regular parking pass" but nobody in Communications has heard of such a thing in the 12 years I have worked here. I also asked traffic enforcement to see what this pass looks like and who is responsible for providing them but nobody can provide me with an answer.

If those stalls are purposely reserved for ONLY the media (KSEE, KMPH, etc) then I strongly suggest the wording be changed to "MEDIA ONLY" and the color should be different than the rest of the signs.

RESPONSE: I appreciate your feedback on this matter. The two parking stalls in the Keats parking lot, designated for Communications Only, are specifically reserved for members of approved media outlets who call University Communications ahead of time to reserve a spot for a specific amount of time on any given day. We will aim to change the wording on the signage so that it is more specific and accurate.


CONCERN: The parking ticket appeal process is broken. If a person physically visits the office, the person is told repeatedly to appeal online. But, the online appeal process does not work. The links lead nowhere.

RESPONSE: Individuals who have received a parking citation have the right to appeal the citation under a three-step process outlined by the California Vehicle Code Section 40215. Citations may be appealed online at www.pticket.com/fresnostate or in person at the Traffic Operations front counter. We recommend waiting 48 hours before contesting a citation online. We have not had any confirmed system outages.


 

POSTED ON 01/16/18

CONCERN: While I understand that parking on this campus is an issue. Why are there so many parking coupon codes being used in particular, in the restricted parking lots. Today alone, as I was trying to find a parking space in P23 the noticed 9 coupon codes. I also notice that students are parking in the restricted with Faculty/Staff yellow permits and coupon codes. Seems like abuse of the system to me....

RESPONSE: Coupon codes are offered by departments as a convenience for guests to campus. Fees are paid by the division hosting the visitor. Suspected coupon code misuse should be reported to Traffic Operations at 8-2950


CONCERN: I drive the same car to work every single day, and park in the same lot, every day. I pay a high fee every single month to do so. It is thus preposterous that - if I happen to forget the tag on one day, or if it falls off my mirror because it is flimsy, or if I take it down to clean the car and fail to put it back up - I am fined an unreasonable amount of money. Parking operations has my license plate number. If, while writing me up, they can take a picture of the license plate number, and take pics at three angles on my parking spot, AND take a pic of the interior of the car, then they can sure run the license plate through a database and note that I have faithfully paid my parking dues for 15 years.

While I recognize the importance of displaying some outward sign of having paid my parking dues, I don't think it's particularly fair to have a zero-tolerance policy, especially for faculty members. If the license plate for the car receiving the ticket is registered, then a minor fine or warning should be given. The ONLY thing I can conclude from the process as it stands is that the parking fines are set up to be revenue-generating, which is clearly unethical.

RESPONSE: Our current parking enforcement technology does not have the capability to verify paid parking by license plate. We are exploring this in the near future. Fresno State continues to offer one of the lowest parking fees for faculty, staff and students in the CSU. Our procedures for contesting parking violations are in accordance with California Vehicle Code, Section 40215.


CONCERN: It is difficult to imagine a more frustratingly designed parking lot than just east of the Kremen building. At 5 pm, three separate streams of traffic are funneled toward a single exit. Outgoing traffic slows to a crawl as drivers from each "stream" struggle to determine whose turn it is. The situation is both dangerous and induces road rage -- can we expect drivers to be good natured enough to wait their turn and not turn into one another?

The parking lot exits onto Keats, which is backed up with dozens of cars trying to turn onto an equally backed up Maple. Often, only one car can exit the parking lot per minute. This is a travesty. Not to mention there are still cars attempting to enter the parking lot (presumably for 5:30 classes) who have literally nowhere they can go in the parking lot, as it's full of motionless cars who can't leave. And, of course, there are many pedestrians in the parking lot and crosswalk.

It all adds up to a giant mess. My suggestion is for President Castro to park his car in this lot and try leaving at 5 to 5:15 for one week. If he can stand it, bravo. If not, please look for solutions. It shouldn't take 30 minutes to leave campus.

RESPONSE: Thanks for your feedback, and we are sorry that you are experiencing this inconvenience. The reality is that heavy traffic at 5 p.m. is a challenge across campus and is not specific to any particular parking area. Our campus, parking lots and roadways serve more than 3,000 employees and nearly 25,000 students, and there are certain times of day when we do experience congestion. We provide traffic control personnel at 5 p.m. to help manage the flow. However, staffing all impacted intersections is not feasible. “Road rage” incidents should be reported to the Fresno State Police Department at 8-8400.


CONCERN: Parking in some Staff/Yellow lots should be changed from 6 PM to 5 PM. Night classes typically begin at 6 pm - those who have a class beginning at that time wouldn't be able to get to their classes on time.

RESPONSE: In Fall 2016, we changed the time that students can park in yellow (faculty/staff) lots from 7 p.m. to 6 p.m. This change came after analysis of the parking stall availability in all staff lots between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. Please know there was significant consultation with students, faculty and staff as well as meetings with applicable bargaining units. At this time, changing back to 5 p.m. is not feasible.


CONCERN: Again today, November 2, I see a young lady park and get out of her car in P23. I asked her if she was a student, she said yes. So I asked her how she got a coupon code for restricted parking. She informed me that her instructor gives them to his students. Isn't this an abuse of the coupon code usage? So now this student doesn't even pay to park, the department does! We as faculty and staff are made to pay for our parking. This has become so frustrating when as faculty and staff we are now hunting for parking spaces only to see students continue to gain access to the restricted parking lots. Why is this allowed?

RESPONSE: Coupon codes are intended for campus visitors. Without specific details, it is difficult for us to solve this problem as codes are given to every department on campus to use for guests and visitors to use when they come to campus for meetings, events, etc.


CONCERN: I am a staff member on campus, and I usually park in yellow lots K or L. I have been frequently concerned about the students' lack of regard for their own safety in parking lots. I make a concerted effort to drive approx. 3 miles per hour in the lot as students "pop out" from between parked cars and wander into traffic in the lots. In addition, they walk in lines through the lots blocking any attempt for drivers to pass and park. As a result, one has to roll silently behind the walking students until they make it across the entire lot, despite the fact that there is a sidewalk approx. 4 feet away. In addition, students frequently walk directly behind drivers as they are slowly backing out. It is honestly frightening and anxiety provoking as the thought of actually hitting and injuring a student is a reality due to this behavior. I am not sure that anything could actually be done to enforce parking lot rules and etiquette but I just want to bring up this ongoing safety issue. Thank you very much for all you do and thank you for your time.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your concern and commitment to safety. We will monitor accordingly. 


 

POSTED ON 09/14/17

CONCERN: In Parking Lot 17 (between the Agricultural Science and McLane Hall buildings), there are a number of carpool spaces that go unused every day. This lot always has the regular faculty/staff spaces filled, even in the summer. Is there a way that we can reduce the number of employee carpool spaces, to make room for more regular faculty/staff spaces that will actually be used?

RESPONSE: In an effort to encourage employee carpooling, these spaces were placed in parking lot P17 due to the proximity to the center of campus. These spaces have had a positive impact on the carpool program. As posted, these spaces are open to those with yellow permits after 5 p.m. each day.


 

POSTED ON 06/15/17

CONCERN: The metered parking on Maple Avenue off Barstow needs to be reconsidered. When oversized vehicles (especially large SUVs and extended cab pickup trucks) are parked there, it forces vehicles to cross over the midline in order to safely pass by. If two such vehicles are lined up on opposite sides, it turns Maple Avenue into a one-lane road. I know metered parking is limited on campus, but these vehicles are causing a safety hazard.

RESPONSE: Yes, our parking operations team is aware of this impact and will continue to take necessary action to ensure safety in the area. We may want to convert these stalls to compact in addition to placing reminders asking that oversized vehicles not park in these stalls.


 

POSTED ON 05/08/17

CONCERN: The Maple and San Ramon faculty/staff parking lot badly needs motorcycle parking slots properly labeled.

RESPONSE: Thank you. This issue has been recently resolved. The motorcycle parking area was repainted.


CONCERN: I am new to Fresno State and love my second semester as a Bulldog. With everything we pay to go to school, why do we have to pay to park? Why is it just not part of tuition? Does the college not own the parking lots? We don't pay for space we use in the library or in the Student Union. Why is parking different?

RESPONSE: According to Title V (Article 7, Section 42200) of the California Code of Regulation, the University must charge for parking. The Fresno State parking program receives no state funding – it is required to be self-supporting from parking fee revenues. Revenue collected from the sale of parking permits is used to cover annual operations, maintenance, construction costs and debt on existing parking lots and access roads.


 

POSTED ON 03/30/17

CONCERN: Love the idea of Bulldog Express, but is there a way we can add a stop near Kremen? Maybe at the roundabout of Maple and Shaw? I want to use the Save Mart Center parking, but my last class is in Kremen and most graduate students have class till 9:50 p.m. The closest stop is at the North Gym.

RESPONSE: Thank you for the recommendation. Traffic Operations staff are currently evaluating locations for a Bulldog Express stop on the south end of campus.


CONCERN: I am a staff member who parks in Lot 16 on a daily basis. I go to my car a couple of times a day, and I always see parking infractions in this lot. I see cars with student placards parked in this staff lot, cars with staff placards parked in the motorcycle lanes and cars without handicapped placards parked in handicapped parking spots. Can we get heavier parking enforcement in that lot?

RESPONSE: Traffic Operations recently determined the motorcycle parking in Lot P16 was painted incorrectly. The stall markings were recently corrected. Parking enforcement staff routinely monitor P16 as a part of their daily assignments.


CONCERN: Are there any plans to expend the parking behind the Library near the Amphitheater? It is impossible to take a break around noon and find a parking space after 12:45. Many times employees don’t take lunch breaks just because they don't want to endlessly drive around the lot and not find a place to park.

RESPONSE: The Campus Master Planincludes a parking structure on the current site of parking lots P30 and P31. However, parking structures are very costly to build and would increase parking permit costs for students. As such, we continue to identify opportunities where we can add parking stalls to existing lots and we offer alternative transportation programs such as Bulldog Express (our campus shuttle) and free area bus passes (FAX, V-Line, etc.). For more information, please visit http://fresnostate.edu/adminserv/police/transportation/bus/index.html


CONCERNS: Bold New U: (1) There is definitely not enough parking to accommodate the number of students attending Fresno State. Before we begin to think about a "Bold New" Student Union, we need to have the parking for students to spend time in there. I missed an important lab after driving for 40 minutes looking for a spot. I ended up going home.

(2) I believe that the students, faculty and staff would be much better served by a parking solution rather than another building. The current Student Union building serves its purpose quite well. There are many areas in which the facilities on campus could be improved such as parking or fixing the chairs in the Engineering East Building. With limited funds and fees increasing, I submit some improvements to the existing infrastructure should take priority.

RESPONSES: (1) Thank you for your feedback on the Bold New U.

(2)The Campus Master Planincludes a parking structure on the current site of parking lots P30 and P31. However, parking structures are very costly to build and would increase parking permit costs for students. As such, we continue to identify opportunities where we can add parking stalls to existing lots and we offer alternative transportation programs such as Bulldog Express (our campus shuttle) and free area bus passes (FAX, V-Line, etc.). For more information, please visit http://fresnostate.edu/adminserv/police/transportation/bus/index.html


CONCERN: I suggest two improvements: (1) The money that will be appropriated to build a new USU building would be better used to expand the campus day care for the student parents who are not able now to enroll their children because of its limited size. (2) Parking permits could be sold for the entire school year, fall through spring, with a discount.

RESPONSE: 

(1)  We recognize there is a need for additional child care services for students, faculty and staff. We are working with our Programs for Children Board to explore expansion options that would help to meet increased demand, given the quality of our child care program that is in partnership with our academic programs.

(2) Thank you for the suggestion regarding being able to purchase annual parking permits at a reduced rate. We will explore further, if feasible.


CONCERN: Please build a diagonal bridge from the Save Mart Center parking lot corner to the parking permit machine across the street. I understand this is costly, but as more students park at the Save Mart Center the intersection gets very packed. From the Save Mart Center to get to the campus, students have to go through three crossings (within 50 feet).

RESPONSE: Unfortunately this not a cost-effective approach.


CONCERN: The fact that instructional student assistants on campus are not able to purchase yellow permits is increasingly frustrating. ISAs can work up to 20 hours a week, and if they are in 15 semester units, they are on campus a minimum of 35 hours a week. I think it is a huge disservice to students who work on campus. At the very least, ISAs could receive a stipend to discount parking passes, lest they want to find employment elsewhere.

RESPONSE: Unfortunately, we are not able to offer instructional student assistants yellow permits, given limited number of yellow parking stalls for faculty and staff. However, in a recent agreement with the bargaining units, it was agreed that students can park in the yellow lots beginning at 6 p.m. on weekdays given availability of yellow stalls after that time of day for faculty and staff. Also, don’t forget about taking advantage of the Bulldog Express and the Campus Escort service for transportation alternatives to your parked vehicle.


 

POSTED ON 02/09/17

CONCERN: There should be a dollar bill and coin slot option on all daily parking dispensers. Not everyone has a credit or debit card to purchase a daily parking pass.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. We transitioned our dispensers over a year ago given limited usage of cash option. You can still pay cash for a daily parking pass by visiting the Parking Office on Barstow Avenue. You can also access PayByPhone on the Fresno State App to purchase a daily permit.


CONCERN: As a student employee, I work 20 hours on campus throughout the year and much more in the summer. I know getting a yellow pass is not feasible during the school year. But, I've been wanting an option where we could purchase summer passes that are allowed in yellow spots. Even though there are summer classes there are tons of staff parking spaces available. Is there any way where we could get a discount parking summer permit or even a yellow pass for the summer?

RESPONSE: Unfortunately, we are not able to sell student assistants yellow permits. We do discount student permits in the summer to $44.


 

POSTED ON 01/04/17

Parking passes that resulted in $50 tickets: (1) temporary paper voucher must have fallen off the dashboard. (2) Plastic permit hook isn’t effective and pass fell off.

RESPONSE: We recognize the challenges of a temporary and hanging parking permits. As such, our future plan is to implement new software that will provide the ability to check license plate numbers to ensure a permit has been issued for that vehicle in the event that a permit is not shown. There is a process to appeal tickets (click here for instructions and the form) but unfortunately it is unlikely these tickets can be dismissed since the citation was for failure to display your permit. Please know we are addressing as we recognize the inconvenience and frustration, but our current system is limited and does not give us this functionality.


CONCERN: I am in the EMBA program on Saturdays and there has to be a better way for parking for us during the football games and Save Mart Center events. Connecting us via our student ID or permission through an email should grant us parking in front of Craig School of Business. I realize this doesn’t happen every week but there should be a better way to improvise.

RESPONSE: We regret the unfortunate situation that occurred earlier this fall when a home football game coincided with a large event in the Save Mart Center. We realize this was a terrible inconvenience for our EMBA students and we sincerely apologize that we had not communicated properly or made appropriate parking accommodations for you and your classmates. We have made arrangements to avoid this inconvenience in the future. Please know that we immediately communicated with the faculty and EMBA Director after this situation occurred and acknowledged there needed to be enhanced communication and coordination.


CONCERN: Can you please send a communication to the administration at University High School to tell the parents or family members not to park on the red zone on Matoian Way as they wait for their students. The partially block the road and create a situation that can be hazardous.

RESPONSE: Yes, we have asked the UHS administration to send a reminder to their parents and students at University High School reminding them to not park in the red zones.


 

POSTED ON 11/3/16

CONCERN: This is a follow up to the question regarding 20-minute (free) disabled parking. The question was not in regards to disabled parking for enrolled students or current employees. It was in reference to visitors who are disabled and there are no free timed parking spaces for them. If you have 20-minute free parking for able-bodied people, shouldn't you also have 20-minute free accessible parking for disabled people? And as mentioned in the response, the 20-minute slots and metered parking are not accessible. If a disabled visitor comes to campus, they are required to purchase a parking permit to park in the disabled (accessible) parking spots even if it's only for a few minutes.

RESPONSE: We do offer free parking for disabled visitors. Disabled visitors can stop by the Traffic Operations for a free day permit OR they can just display a valid placard or plate and utilize parking meters, timed zones or any other parking stall on campus. We do not have specific timed/loading zones for disabled visitors because they are free to parking anywhere at no cost (unless it is for a special ticketed event such as an event at the Save Mart Center or an athletic event). This courtesy is authorized by Education Code 67301(b).


CONCERN: I suggest a change to the parking system to make the color-coded parking pass signs useful, rather than misleading and penalty-inducing. Waiting to cross traffic and turn into the VERC parking lot, I noted that the sign next to the VERC parking lot displayed a yellow band under the lot name P19. Looking to my right, however, I saw that the lot across the street from VERC also showed a yellow band under the lot name (P18). In the yellow band were the words "Yellow. PERMIT REQUIRED." My faculty/staff permit in my car is yellow, so I took this as a sign I could park at VERC.

When I came back to my car there was a parking ticket for $50 that stated "No valid permit displayed." I walked up to the parking sign at the edge of the lot. While the color-coded permit band was the same color as the one across the street, I now read with shock that the band contained the word GOLD, not yellow.

I imagine that color-coded parking is used to help members of the Fresno State community easily know where they are able to park on campus. However, having a Gold and a Yellow parking lot defeats this goal.

RESPONSE: You are correct, this is not ideal. The only gold lot on campus is located in P19. We agree with your observation.


CONCERN: As a returning student and alumnus, I'd like to provide some perspective to faculty complaining about the potential of students parking in staff lots earlier than 7 p.m. As recently as the late 1980s/early 1990s, staff lots were opened to students at 5 p.m. Then-President Dr. Harold Haak was implementing a robust night program. In addition, there were grave concerns about student safety at night in 1986. I was unaware that faculty paid less for parking than students. If they want prime parking they should be charged accordingly.

RESP0NSE: Thanks for this feedback. There was a meet and confer process with CSUEU and CFA bargaining units and agreement was reached that students can park in the yellow lots beginning at 6 p.m. on weekdays given availability of yellow stalls after that time of day for faculty and staff.


CONCERN: I've noticed problems with parking. (1) The machines to buy daily parking passes only take credit cards. (2) I couldn't use the parking meters during a four-hour training because the meters have two-hour limits. I would like to see the day ticket dispensers take cash, or give student employees codes for free passes for training and meetings during summer and breaks.

RESPONSE: Sorry for the frustration with the dispensers. We did make a switch to these machines last year to only accept credit or debit cards. All departments have coupon codes that can be used at their discretion.


CONCERN: Is it possible to get some of the staff/faculty parking spaces in Lot 0 widened? The spaces are really narrow and my car has been dinged on numerous occasions even if both cars are in their correct spot. I understand it could cause us to lose some spaces, but there is usually room.

RESPONSE: Sorry to hear about your dinged vehicle. The parking spaces in lot P16 (formerly called Lot O) are slightly smaller than other spaces on campus. However, adjusting the size of these spaces would cause a loss of faculty/staff parking stall inventory. We should be able to address the reduction of any stalls after additional faculty/staff parking stalls are added as a part of the P1 lot renovation.


 

POSTED ON 8/25/2016

CONCERN: As a long-time staff member on campus it is very upsetting to get a parking citation. I chose the decal to hang on the rear view mirror. From time to time, it slides under the window shield (in the summer) and/or I simply forget to hang it. Since a parking citation is $50 and is recorded with the DMV, is there a way to verify that the car I drive to work has paid its monthly fees and not issue a citation?

RESPONSE: We recognize the challenges of a hanging parking permit.  As such, our plan this year is to implement new software that will provide the ability to check license plate numbers to ensure a permit has been issued for that vehicle in the event that a permit is not shown. This will be a major service improvement.


 

POSTED ON 6/29/2016

CONCERN: Why aren't there free 30-minute disabled parking spots? All the disabled parking stalls require a Fresno State parking pass in addition to the disabled placard or license plate. Parking passes are not required of those who park in the other 30-minute parking stalls. Those free 30-minute stalls are not accessible.

RESPONSE: In accordance with Title 5, CCR 42200 (c), campus parking regulations do not permit complimentary parking for matriculating students or employees who display valid disabled placards or license plates. Employees and students must display a valid parking permit along with DMV issued placards or license plates in all Fresno State parking spaces. We do offer a number of areas with metered parking and 20-minute loading zones but those stalls are not designated as disabled parking stalls.


CONCERN: What can we do about the trees that drop sticky stuff on vehicles? The back parking lot at Joyal has a lot of those trees and there are a few at Lot P17 by the McLane building.

RESPONSE: Sorry about this inconvenience. The honeydew dripping on the sidewalks and cars is caused by aphids and other insects infesting the trees. Our grounds department is monitoring the landscape for pest presence and treating the trees in the locations in question to get the pest problem under control.


CONCERN: As a recent graduate (2014) and a current staff member, it is frustrating to see the constant complaints about student parking. As a former student who took night classes, I understand that parking away from your class is not always ideal, but Fresno State does offer services to transport you to your car. It is irritating to me to see that students want to park in faculty spots at 5 p.m. There are many people who would be put out if the time of student parking was moved to an earlier time. It is unfair to the staff and faculty who have worked hard for their positions to not be able to park because a student is parked there. It is one of the perks of being a faculty or staff member and it should be kept this way.

RESPONSE: Thank you and we understand and respect your position. Please be advised that we have been in discussions with representatives from the bargaining units regarding the ability to allow students to access faculty/staff parking lots earlier than 7 p.m. We have reached agreement with CSUEU and discussions are continuing with CFA in an effort to reach mutual agreement so as not to negatively impact faculty and staff. Also, please be aware that our students pay more than faculty and staff to park on campus and it is difficult to explain to students when they see many open spaces in these lots after 5 p.m. We will continue to ensure our entire campus community is supported with adequate parking facilities and services.


CONCERN: The south curb of P24 (north of the North Gym) needs to be painted red immediately. For years we have been told the curb will be changed from a loading zone to a red, yet it never happens - even when the entire curb was rebuilt following the construction of the pool. It is a very dangerous area. There is not enough room for vehicles in opposing directions to pass each other and people step out in front of moving vehicles with no warning. With limited visibility, approaching vehicles often get boxed in while students park in the untimed "Loading Zone" for hours at a time. There is no signage to tell drivers which direction to go on the narrow one-way aisles. There is a loading zone located on the side of the North Gym at the turnaround. It's even worse when buses are loading in that space - there's no room to safely turn into aisles. It's a complete mess that would be solved by $5 and 10 minutes of painting.

RESPONSE: Thank you for the feedback. We are aware of this safety concern and the curb will be painted this summer.


 

POSTED ON 5/9/2016

CONCERN: Non-handicapped individuals are parking in the handicap parking spaces located on Maple Mall near Peters Business in order to utilize the parking ticket dispenser. For those of us who have a handicap placard this is unacceptable. My suggestion is that the dispenser be moved to another location.

RESPONSE: Thank you for pointing this out. We have moved the dispenser.


CONCERN: A writer recently expressed concern about needing cameras in the parking lots to view cars being damaged and for safety. The answer was that “We have cameras on campus in various locations and in some parking lots. In the future, please report the accident to the campus police department so that they can investigate further.” Here is my story: My vehicle was parked three stalls in from the Peters Business Building when it was hit. I filed a report with campus police. I asked to review the video footage but was told the cameras were not working.

RESPONSE: Thank you for reporting this. We check all cameras regularly to make sure they are functioning properly. It could have been that the camera was not pointing to your vehicle at the specific moment the accident.


 

POSTED ON 4/4/2016

CONCERN: Fresno State needs to make better parking areas or possibly put more cameras in place in the parking lots. I say this because my car bumper was hit while parked, and whoever hit my car last year did not leave a note. It would be nice to know that there are more cameras in parking lots or possibly more traffic operations that patrol each parking lot if something does happen to a student's car. Cameras could also help students be reassured when walking to their cars.

RESPONSE: We are sorry to hear about the damage to your vehicle. We have cameras on campus in various locations and in some parking lots. In the future, please report the accident to the campus police department so that they can investigate further.


CONCERN: I think it would be helpful to allow students who work on campus to purchase faculty/staff parking passes. I, as a student assistant, receive faculty/staff emails because of my job. I should be able to get the same parking benefits.

RESPONSE: Unfortunately we are not able to offer student assistants yellow permits, given limited number of yellow parking stalls for faculty and staff. However, we are working with the employee unions to move up the current 7 p.m. restriction to allow students to park in faculty/staff lots at an earlier time.


CONCERN: Non-handicapped individuals are parking in the handicap parking spaces located on Maple Mall near Peters Business in order to utilize the parking ticket dispenser. For those of us who have a handicap placard this is unacceptable. My suggestion is that the dispenser be moved to another location.

RESPONSE: Thank you for pointing this out. We have moved the dispenser.


CONCERN: We need additional parking permit machines.

RESPONSE: Please send specific suggestions to Derek Brantley at dbrantley@csufresno.edu.

CONCERN: I think the parking fee is too high at the Save Mart Center. It makes absolutely no sense to charge more for parking than the price of admission. One suggestion is to have some type of validation system for shoppers at Campus Pointe or surrounding businesses.

RESPONSE: The parking fee of $10 has not increased in many years and is comparable with the parking fee charged at the downtown convention center. The Save Mart Center is required to be a self-supporting operation and parking revenues help to support the debt service and operating costs. We do allow students to park in these lots during the daytime at no additional cost, which is a huge benefit to the University since these parking lots were not built with state funds. Regarding validation, Campus Pointe and Save Mart Center are two separate venues and so unfortunately that would not be practical.


CONCERN: Faculty parking lots are not open to students early enough in the day.

RESPONSE: We are working with our employee unions to negotiate an earlier time and hopefully we will be able to implement this change starting with the fall 2016 semester.


CONCERN: Need improved bike racks in the Engineering West area.

RESPONSE: We will evaluate the existing bike rack area and replace with new ones if feasible.


 

POSTED ON 1/29/2016

CONCERN: More police presence in the south parking (Shaw) lot for night courses. I have yet to see a police vehicle or police officer when I leave the building and walk through the parking lot at night. Also, better lighting and more police deterrents placed in the parking lots. Deterrents play a role in making potential criminals aware that they are being filmed and crimes will not go unnoticed.

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this concern/observation to our attention. Our University police officers make regular patrols throughout the entire campus 24-7. Also, all of our exterior lighting has been upgraded with LED lights, which has made a big difference in the lighting level at night. Please utilize the Escort Service by calling University Police Dispatch at 559.278.8400 if you would like assistance in getting from your classroom to your vehicle during the evening hours.

SAFETY

POSTED ON 06/20/18

CONCERN: At the beginning of the semester, I fractured my foot while crossing N. Campus Drive. This road is incredibly broken and uneven and has resulted in more than one person rolling their ankle and, in my case, sustaining serious injury. Additionally, I experienced more problems with this road while recovering from my fracture and using a knee walker. The road is so broken where the crosswalks lead to the North Gym that I could not maneuver the walker along the crosswalks without risking re-injuring myself. These crosswalks are absolutely not accessible to people using wheeled assistance. Are there any plans to repair this road?

RESPONSE: I am very sorry to hear of your injury. Many of our campus roads are in need of major repair.  This summer we are replacing Barton Avenue, and Barstow Avenue repaving will happen next summer along with Campus Drive. If you have not already done so, please be sure to report your injury to our Risk Manager, Lisa Kao (lisak@csufresno.edu).


 

POSTED ON 04/30/18

CONCERN: Is there a way to put a pay phone somewhere on campus? There are many community members who need to use phones on a regular basis, and there is no pay phone even close to campus. It would be well used and appreciated by many on campus.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. AT&T no longer supports pay phones on our campus. In cases of an emergency, there are emergency phones located throughout the campus. There are several apps you can install on your computer that will allow you to make phone calls using the internet. Please contact our IT Help Desk for information on these applications.


CONCERN: I am a faculty member, went to the Fresno State Campus police to report a simple assault that had happened right off campus. I told the assistant at the front the desk what happened because this person asked. I waited for a while and then I had to repeat it again to the officer who did not seem to care. The officer seemed dismissive, and I felt like I was bothering them with my incident. I didn't appreciate it at all.

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this to our attention. I know this was a concerning incident for you, and I apologize for the experience. Please know that I have forwarded this concern to our Chief of Police, David Huerta.


 

POSTED ON 03/09/18

CONCERN: Safety Issue - There is an open pit outside the University Center that should be covered. It has been left there like this (unsafe) for months and months. Please fix it.

RESPONSE: Thank you for letting us know. The open pit you are referring to was necessary for the utility infrastructure improvement project that included upgrading of our underground natural gas lines. The space was safely barricaded while the work was underway. The pit will be closed in the very near term. We appreciate your attention to this situation. If in the future, you notice a perceived unsafe situation, please report immediately to the Office of Environmental Health and Safety and Risk Management (8-7422).


CONCERN: SAFETY ISSUE: One of the elevators in the south end of the library is down and has been for some time. Apparently, someone decided that sticking a library location sign in front of it solves the problem. It doesn't solve the problem. The elevator needs to be fixed. It is a safety hazard to leave it like that.

RESPONSE: Currently, all elevators in the Madden Library are operational. We upgraded the Library (north) elevators approximately two years ago. We did have some follow up issues, which have since been addressed. Elevator issues can be reported directly to Facilities Management via their online work order system found here.


CONCERN: This is a follow-up question in regards to installing median barriers along Shaw Avenue - from Cedar to Chestnut Avenues - to ensure the safety of pedestrians by using a crosswalk and not jaywalking, which was published on 3/30/2017. As you noted, the University has asked the City of Fresno to look into the feasibility of doing this, but nothing has been done. Pedestrians still continue to jaywalk on Shaw even if the no jaywalking signs are posted. And there is not a lot of police presence in the area from the Fresno Police Department to assess the situation. Is there a time frame where the City will install those median barriers? And will the University work closely with Fresno P.D. and campus police monitor the situation and issue citations to those violating the law?

You also mentioned the University is currently working on some Public Service Announcement videos to help educate the campus community on the dangers of jaywalking. Is there also a time frame on when the campus community could view those videos?

RESPONSE: The Fresno State Police Department strongly encourages those crossing Shaw Avenue to use designated crosswalks. Shaw Avenue is under the jurisdiction of the City of Fresno. We have expressed our concerns about the median to the appropriate colleagues at the City of Fresno.  We will continue to voice this concern. We are also working on upgrading the signal at Shaw and Maple to include a dedicated left-turn arrow to mitigate the vehicle/pedestrian conflict.  Safety is always a high priority.  A distracted-walker video is available on the Fresno State Police Department web page and on the Student Health and Wellness site.


CONCERN: There are areas on campus designated as “wheels off” zones; however, the signs are very small and students constantly ignore them. It does not appear anyone is trying to enforce the wheels off zones. This is particularly problematic in the area between USU and Taco Bell. I have almost been hit numerous times by skateboarders. Could you PLEASE do something about the skateboarding and bike riding in high traffic walking areas? Someone is going to get hurt!

RESPONSE: We do have a campus “wheels off” policy for certain high-traffic pedestrian areas. We send out periodic reminders to our campus community. You can also share any specific safety-related concerns with Shirley Staton, (sstaton@csufresno.edu) Chair of the University’s Occupational, Safety, and Wellness Committee. This committee is very proactive and advocates for helping to identify and resolve potential campus-safety issues.


CONCERN: I find it common for professors to say an excuse of "Fire code cannot accept more than ____ students" Only to find out later that it was a lied to. Can you put in every classroom the maximum number of people that can be in each classroom?

RESPONSE: As a CSU, we are required to comply with the California Building Code. Rooms that have an occupant load of 50 or more are required to have two exits, and we are required to be compliant.  We appreciate your cooperation in not exceeding the posted maximum occupancy.  We could be cited and fined for non-compliance by the State Fire Marshal.


 

POSTED ON 01/16/18

CONCERN: Prohibiting smoking on campus is a step in the right direction for improving air quality, but nothing has been done about the leaf blowers.

Leaf blowers blow into the air many particulates, including dirt, dust, pesticides, fertilizers, mold, and more, causing a wide variety of adverse health effects. The noise factor is nothing compared to the air quality impairment and health risk.

Finding a more environmentally safe way to keep our grounds clean would show that the campus is proactive in seeking the safety and health of students, staff, and faculty, as well as visitors to the university.

Please put a stop to the use of leaf blowers on campus.

RESPONSE: Thank you for this suggestion. Our grounds team manages more than 1,400 acres of property, and the leaf blowers are a necessary tool for our landscape maintenance. That said, our grounds team does try to use this equipment during non-peak hours. 


CONCERN: As I was walking from the parking lot to the building today, a student was driving at least 30 miles per hour and came within a foot of hitting me. This is a daily occurrence for not only staff and faculty but students as well. Would you please install speed bumps on the east side of the Peters Business Building (as speed bumps used to be there)? A better option would be to add a grass area in the roadway from Matoian to San Ramon streets.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion and commitment to safety. We have reported this concern to the appropriate police personnel. Speed bumps create other issues such as air quality, but we will evaluate other possible solutions that would slow down the vehicle speed.


CONCERN: Free transportation from Visalia to Fresno via the Vline transit system is a wonderful service provided for Fresno State students. However, a huge safety issue has emerged over the last year or two. Due to the large number of Fresno State students riding the bus there are often times that students are forced to stand due to lack of seat availability and the transit system's lack of concern for the safety of those that have to stand from Visalia to Fresno or Fresno back to Visalia. Is it possible to put some pressure on the Vline system to provide additional buses so that we are not putting the lives of students at risk or to run the buses more frequently?

RESPONSE: Thank you for reporting this. The V-Line shuttle is operated by Visalia Transit and Fresno State through its alternative transportation program (ATP) which covers the cost for students, faculty and staff. We will share your concern with our partners at the City of Visalia. Specific customer concerns can be submitted online at http://www.visaliatransit.com


CONCERN: There are courses on campus that have enrollment totals above the listed capacity for the rooms in which they are taught. Is this a violation of the fire code?

RESPONSE: Thank you. Yes, University Risk Management, in coordination with Facilities Management and Academic Affairs, is exploring how to ensure that classes are not being overenrolled beyond the approved room capacity per fire code requirements.


 

POSTED ON 05/08/17

CONCERN: When entering or leaving the campus from Maple Avenue, I notice that students, faculty and visitors are often jaywalking to get to the Kremen building from Lot P1 (or the other way around) instead of using the crosswalks. In some cases, they are so distracted with their electronic devices while jaywalking that they don't acknowledge a car is approaching them. Is there a way to enforce a rule for everyone to use the crosswalks?

RESPONSE: Although the California Vehicle Code prohibits jaywalking, it continues to be an issue around the campus community. Our Fresno State Police Department is currently working on some Public Service Announcement videos to help educate the campus community on the dangers of jaywalking.


 

POSTED ON 03/30/17

CONCERN: The University needs to implement a strict regulation on pedestrians jaywalking along Shaw Avenue by working with the city of Fresno to install median barriers from Cedar Avenue all the way to Chestnut Avenue. As you may recall, a student was struck and killed while attempting to cross Shaw in late 2013. Many pedestrians are continuing to jaywalk in front of oncoming traffic, both day and night. There are “no jaywalking” signs posted on the medians, but many people are constantly ignoring those warning signs.

RESPONSE: Although California Vehicle Code prohibits jaywalking, it continues to be an issue around the campus community. The Fresno State Police Department is currently working on some Public Service Announcement videos to help educate the campus community on the dangers of jaywalking. The University has requested that the City of Fresno explore the feasibility, as this is city property.


CONCERN: There needs to be security in the parking lots to ensure the students’ safety. I park in Lot 27 and there have been assaults in and near there. I have not seen any campus security or police patrolling throughout this semester or the one before. Too many times have I seen security in groups laughing and joking around. Yes, I am sure that security and the Fresno police department do an amazing job, but it would help if there were more assistance and more patrolling.

RESPONSE: Parking Lot 27 is regularly patrolled by the Fresno State Police Department. Crime statistics do not indicate any reported incidents occurring in that area. If at any time you feel unsafe, please use our safety escort service by calling 278.8400 or locate an emergency phone to request a safety escort officer. We are evaluating the lighting levels in all parking lots and recently did a “night walk” to identify some areas where lighting can be added/enhanced.


 

POSTED ON 02/09/17

CONCERN: I am a freshman. I would like to share with you some of my thoughts and ideas that I believe could help make Fresno State a safer university. I suggest you consider the selling of pepper sprays at the Kennel Bookstore. My second idea is adding self-defense classes to the general education catalog as a course option. The third and last idea I have is the increase of police patrol. Additional patrols from police officers both day and night can help reduce the crime rate and fear of students who walk to and from their vehicles, especially at night when the parking lots are a lot darker and emptier.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestions. Our Public Safety Department is implementing several measures to improve campus safety, including hiring additional officers and mobilizing additional resources. Our police department is patrolling our campus 24-7. We do offer self-defense classes and active shooter trainings (Seconds 2 Survive). For more information and to register please contact the Public Safety department at 278.8400. Also, the campus Police Department provides safety escorts upon request to accompany individuals to their destinations on campus. The Kennel Bookstore is not able to sell pepper spray at this time.


CONCERN: There are quite a number of emergency poles around campus that are non-operational. Is there a plan to replace them soon?

RESPONSE: All the emergency phones (blue poles) are all operational now. We recently completed a refurbishment project which involved updating all of the phones, servicing and replacing phone components, replacing lighting with LED lights, and they were repainted to make the emergency phones more visible.

All campus emergency phones are tested monthly. As a reminder, in case of emergency, you can use your cell phone and dial 9-1-1


CONCERN: Where is the campus's gun-free zone border? I understand that the property where Campus Pointe was built is owned by the University so is that a gun-free zone? If I live in the Palazzo Apartments is it illegal for me to bring my weapon to my home? If I have a CCW am I legally able to carry at the Maya Cinemas, Farm Market, etc.

RESPONSE: Campus Pointe is located on property owned by the State/CSU. Additional clarification on this matter has been requested from CSU Office of General Counsel.


CONCERN: The lights underneath the solar panels in Lot P2 need to be upgraded to energy efficient LED lights to ensure students, staff and sometimes Save Mart Center attendees are parked in a well-lit area, and they can safely get to and from their vehicles. The lot is very dim. Most of the rows are unlit in some areas due the fluorescent light bulbs being out. And the big spotlights located at the ends of each pole don't seem to work.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. We will work with our facilities team to make sure the lights are operational and we will explore the feasibility and timing of converting the lights under the solar panel to LED as we have with our entire campus exterior lighting.


CONCERN: I work during the day and most of my classes are held at night in the Kremen Education Building. I find myself feeling very uneasy and not safe when I leave the building and walk to my car, which typically is in the P2 Lot. There are barely any lights outside the Kremen Building, and hardly any parking lights in the faculty parking near Maple Avenue. Is it possible for more lights to be added in this area?

RESPONSE: This concern was reported last fall and we immediately installed two mobile light towers to the area to improve lighting. Those light towers are still there and operating. We also have asked the grounds team to trim the trees that may have been obstructing some of the lights.


CONCERN: I am hoping that individual lanes (similar to this one https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/dc/78/f6/dc78f6f7215de23a07a860245e9ba507.jpg ) for pedestrians and people on wheels can be established to decrease the human congestion and possibility of collisions. It can be a challenge getting to class with people and bikes, skateboards, etc. all mixed together and going in different directions.

An answer to a similar to my question referenced this link http://fresnostate.edu/adminserv/police/documents/AlternativeTransportationPlan.pdf. In time I hope to read all 122 pages, but for now I would like to know if this plan includes the possibility of making the lanes mentioned before.

RESPONSE: Yes, we are familiar with these strategies. However, in some areas of campus we do not have the physical space to create separate lanes. Please be advised that we recently installed signage denoting “wheels off” areas in order to protect a safe path of travel for pedestrians. Please know that our Campus Planning and Occupational Health, Safety and Wellness Committees both have ongoing discussions on how we can continue to communicate the importance of safety for our campus community.


 

POSTED ON 01/04/17

CONCERN: With the increase in vehicles being broken into, a colleague suggested that campus police assign individuals to ride bicycles on campus to monitor the parking lots. I understand that there are budgetary issues but there needs to be funding put aside for this. Perhaps volunteers from the ROTC program could be assigned to do this as credit. An increase in visible security would definitely help. Another issue is that there does not seem to be notifications sent out to the campus community regarding vehicle break ins. However, there are many notifications when there is an off-campus issue.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. Our Public Safety Department is implementing several measures to improve campus safety, including hiring new officers and mobilizing additional resources.


CONCERN: There have been three reported incidents in one month to the police department of theft among the Arts and Humanities departments. I believe that we are being targeted. Most of the incidents happen during the weekend when there is minimal traffic. Each time a theft has occurred an estimate of $3,000 in value has been stolen out of the departments. Not only do we have to replace the equipment we also have to repair the damage to the building doors/locks. Our department is trying to move forward to secure our facility with security cameras, but we are having difficulties getting responses back in regards to the proper set-up. Something has to be done when a pattern is noticed.

RESPONSE: Our Public Safety and Facilities teams are committed to security for all those on campus including our University facilities and assets. Last year we implemented a new policy on key and access issuance in order to improve security and regulate access to University facilities. Most recently we have been working directly with the Music and Theatre Arts Department to rekey many of the rooms that have experienced recent break-ins (had not been rekeyed for many years) and we have also installed card key access for enhanced security after hours. Our Public Safety staff is also exploring the installation of video monitoring cameras.


CONCERN: I have been in several near-collisions with skateboarders while walking around campus. I see signs posted in some areas prohibiting skateboarding but have noticed that it is largely ignored. I also witnessed a collision between a skateboarder and a walker in the prohibited area in front of the library. I'm seriously concerned about being hurt.

RESPONSE: These types of collisions are very concerning. We do have a campus “wheels off” policy for certain high-traffic pedestrian areas. We have sent a reminder to our Public Safety, Traffic Operations and Environmental Health and Safety staff to help enforce safety measures for pedestrians and reinforce our wheels off policy. You can also share any specific safety-related concerns with Shirley Staton, (sstaton@csufresno.edu) chair of the University’s Occupational, Safety, and Wellness Committee. This committee is very proactive and advocates for helping to identify and resolve potential campus safety issues.


CONCERN: In October, I was in the Professional Human Services Building taking an exam in my introductory to American Sign Language course when an auditory alarm for fire went off. There was no strobing/flashing light alarm. The professor is deaf and didn't understand what his students were struggling to sign to him. Luckily, there were other ASL teachers in the building who eventually came in and signed him what was taking place. What if a Deaf or Hard of Hearing person was in that room alone and a hearing person wasn't there to inform them about the alarm? I found this whole ordeal to be fairly irksome and unsettling.

RESPONSE: Thank you for bringing this to our attention. Providing safe and accessible facilities for our students, faculty and staff is very important. We will ask the President's Committee on Disability and Access to work with Facilities Management staff to evaluate and implement a solution.

STUDENTS

POSTED ON 09/19/18

CONCERN: Students should be able to study in the library from 7:45 am-12:00 am the week (and weekend) before finals.

RESPONSE: The ASI president has informed me that she will be working with the Dean of the Library on this issue early in the fall 2018 semester.


CONCERN: With respect to the fact that this is the first summer semester that it is offering financial aid to students, I want to know what is being done about the current state of Summer Financial Aid. I have a resource that should for all intents and purposes be made available to me. But because of Fresno State's summer fee structure, where students are being made to pay out of pocket before receiving financial aid I am essentially locked out of not only some very important summer classes but I am effectively being denied access to Financial aid I am otherwise entitled to. What is the purpose of having this available to me, if I have to have the money up front regardless?

RESPONSE: There were some challenges with financial-aid disbursement this past summer. For summer term, we encourage students with financial-aid expectations to enroll as soon as possible and submit the financial aid request form. You may follow up on the status of your award by contacting the Financial Aid Office directly. If you need help with registration, you are still welcome to contact the Office of Continuing and Global Education.


POSTED ON 06/20/18

CONCERN: The Department of Social Work Education is a mess and is floundering. Us students are not happy and do not feel supported by admin and some in the department. We are stressed out and cry due to the workload. This was even before they only accepted 45 students for the MSW program when they have capacity for 60. That is not ok. They are intervening with people's lives by not letting them continue their education, when they have room for 15 more students. The GRE needs to be revoked as a requirement for all grad programs. They have proven to be racially biased towards white people. We are supposed to be a Hispanic-Serving Institution. How is that serving its students? The DSWE's excuse is that applicants did not perform well on the GRE, how can BSW students expect to perform well on a test not meant for them to excel at? You need to intervene. There are so many problems within the DSWE. Do something. Please.

RESPONSE: The Department of Social Work Education (SWE) is working with its admissions committee and students to understand the concerns regarding graduate admissions. This review process will allow the department to make any needed adjustments to graduate admissions in the future. In terms of capacity, the department admissions committee selected the students to be admitted based on criteria that have been used in the past. It is important to note that the program capacity is based on resources to teach the courses required, and class size considerations. The capacity of "60" students is not a target or ceiling. As for the GRE, the admissions committee and faculty in SWE have reviewed the GRE requirement and are making recommendations for the future. We encourage students to work with faculty to help find solutions to their concerns. The SWE graduate program continues to be a very popular major. While not all students can be admitted, we do strive to meet the labor-market requirements by providing a quality graduate education. Please contact the department chair, Dr. Martha Vungkhanching at 278-3992 if you would like to discuss your concern further.


CONCERN: (A concern regarding a teaching assistant was reported. Details have been omitted from President’s Feedback page to protect the teaching assistant’s privacy.)

RESPONSE: All of our classes are spaces where the respectful exploration and discussion of ideas are paramount. The dean has discussed this with the TA Coordinator who spoke to the TA in question in order to ensure that students are respected and allowed to represent themselves and their own beliefs.  We take all student evaluations seriously and hope that students express clearly both teaching strengths and areas needing improvement.


 

POSTED ON 04/30/18

CONCERN: I have noticed that the Fresno State Health Paws posts about suicide prevention, which is definitely something that needs to be talked about. However, they consistently say this is a "100% preventable". I don't feel this is a considerate, compassionate, and more importantly accurate thing to say, let alone promote. My daughter’s friend lost her father last Christmas to suicide. He was an Iraq veteran suffering from PTSD. They will always suffer the pain of this and I know that unfortunately the family all blames themselves for not seeing it, not doing more. This of course is something we as loved ones constantly try to help them see is in no way their fault, sometimes, it just happens. The work the department is trying to do on suicide prevention is great, but the families who have suffered a tragedy like this need to be considered in the message they send out. I would suggest the removal of it being "100% preventable" from all of their messages, postings or otherwise.

RESPONSE: Thank you for expressing your concern related to the marketing of our QPR -Suicide Prevention Trainings. We appreciate your point that this is a strong statement that could be triggering to some people. We will work with our marketing team to try to create better language that conveys our message of: Question. Persuade. Refer. (QPR) 


CONCERN: I see as time has moved on that getting health/counseling appointments at Fresno State is virtually impossible. The wait time is now 1-2 months in order to get an appointment for either. At this point in time, I would get a counseling appointment by the end of the semester... That is a problem as most students cannot even get health/counseling appointments more than once. Please hire more Doctors / counselors.

RESPONSE: University student counseling services around the country have been impacted by increasing demands for mental-health services, however, we are proud of the fact that in the past two years, we have never had more than a two-week wait time for new counseling appointments, and often less. Also, students in crisis can always be seen within one hour when the Student Health and Counseling center is open. Sometimes it is difficult for students to find appointments that fit in their desired time frames, and that may cause a student to be scheduled out a little further, but we also have Let's Talk available Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Kremen 399, where students can walk-in and meet briefly with a counselor without an appointment, as well as several groups and classes that can be utilized for support between appointments.  

In addition, we are one of the few universities that does not have counseling session limits, meaning that students can be seen in counseling as many times as needed throughout their years at Fresno State. We have hired a new counselor and a clinical case manager in the past year, and will consider more positions if needed in the future. Thank you for your feedback.


CONCERN: I have two internships at Fresno State. For one of the internships, I did not get compensated for the hours I worked although I was supposed to get a $1,000 stipend at the end of each semester. With whom should I speak? 

RESPONSE: Please contact the internship coordinator who assisted you with your internship placement or the department chair of your major. If you are uncertain whom to contact, please feel free to email Mary Willis, Campus Internship Coordinator at mwillis@csufresno.edu for further assistance.


CONCERN: The Cross Cultural and Gender Center is a mess. Please investigate. I encountered staff and/or students bickering in public. I can’t tell who is a student and who is staff because everyone is sitting around in front of their laptops. Where is the room for Muslims? Where is the room for international students? How do we get notified about their services and events? The area is so confusing.

RESPONSE: Everyone is welcome to engage in open and sometimes spirited, but always respectful, conversations on a variety of topics. Please feel free to join us for our discussions or group and individual study. Services and events can be found a number of ways such as, CCGC webpage located at fresnostate.edu/studentaffairs/ccgc/. Facebook and Twitter is another source of information as well as fliers distributed for upcoming events. 

We have rooms designated for a number of Fresno State groups and an International Office in Joyal. With limited space, we have no rooms for religious groups, but we welcome all to use our common space in the Cross Cultural and Gender Center for meetings or conversation. Several years ago we also championed a meditation room in the library, plus rooms are available across campus or in the University Student Union for all students to meet. Thank you for feedback. 


 

POSTED ON 03/09/18

CONCERN: The Fresno State Bulldog Marching Band received its current uniforms in the summer of 2009 under the tenure of Dr. Welty. The uniforms were a very generous gift, and a much needed improvement over the previous set which were a thick wool blend that did not breathe well during the hot fall months. The current uniforms, while serving the band well, have become quite worn and are starting to fall apart. On average, a university band program's uniforms last roughly 8-10 years, which is where our uniforms are now with nine seasons (2009-2017). It would be wonderful if the university could outfit our program with new uniforms and give us a fresh look for the upcoming fall. It would be great to welcome the new era of Fresno State football with a new era and look for the band program to support our team as "the soundtrack to the red wave."

RESPONSE: Our new band uniforms will be ordered and custom designed later this year and will be ready for Summer 2019.  I look forward to seeing our talented band members in their new uniforms!


CONCERN: Graduate Assistants who work and serve the university programs should be allowed to have a yellow staff parking pass, as we serve the university in a similar manner and are treated as staff by our departments.

RESPONSE: Unfortunately, we are not able to offer graduate assistants yellow permits, given limited number of yellow parking stalls for faculty and staff. In the Fall 2016, we changed the time that students/visitors can park in faculty/staff lots from 7 p.m. to 6 p.m.


CONCERN: I think Fresno State can do a better job at promoting mental health services. The well-being of students mental health needs must be a priority. Students need to know that mental health services are available to all students who may be experiencing a need and information on where and how they can access services. The negative stigma associated with seeking out mental health care services may prevent many students from making efforts to seek out needed services. I see advertising on a wide range of topics all around the campus but very few informing students that it is perfectly fine to seek out mental health services and that we as a university are here to help. We need to double our efforts, year round, to ensure that students know where and how to access mental health services. We are in need of a year round advertising campaign informing students about mental health care services and how to access these services. We can and must do a better job informing students about services offered at the Health Clinic, specifically Mental Health Services.

RESPONSE: We are always working to find new and better ways to get the word out to students about our mental health services, and though it seems to be improving based on increasing numbers of students utilizing these services, we realize, especially in the wake of recent tragedies, that we still have room to grow.

We recently hired a new Director of Wellness Services, and she, along with her team, is working hard to implement new campaigns that will reach as many students as possible. Of course, the best marketing for mental health services is word-of-mouth from other students, so we have also been working closely with our Student Health Advisory Committee, Peer Ambassadors of Wellness, and ASI to focus on breaking down the stigma of seeking help.


CONCERN: As a student in the credential program my classes are from 4:00-6:50 and 7:00-9:50. I bring my dinner with me and to my surprise there isn't a microwave in the whole building for students to use. I had to walk to the USU just to heat up my food. I think it would be a great to add the microwave near the snack bar on the bottom floor. Please and thank you.

RESPONSE: Yes, we will work with the Kremen School of Education Dean’s Office to coordinate finding a location for a microwave. Thank you!


 

POSTED ON 01/16/18

CONCERN: Currently students in the MS in Counseling, Student Affairs and College Counseling option are having issues getting hired at Fresno State. Many of us are interns in college-level advising centers (or the University Advising Center), but are unable to get hired in advising roles due to HR policies. Our advisors/supervisors are also getting frustrated because they are unable to hire the people they have spent months training to essentially handle the same work as a Student Service Professional II (SSP2). However, the requirements for SSP2 are two years of experience (or one year and a Master’s Degree), and HR isn't counting our internship experience. We are often already in the exact roles that we are applying for, we are just trying to be classified as full-time and get paid for our contributions. These internship hours are required by our graduate program, but I have gotten the sense that advising centers are now feeling hesitant to take interns because they aren't even able to keep them once they are finally trained to handle the job. And why should they train someone for six months, just to lose them and have to train a new intern or SSP2? There have also been many job searches called off as "failed searches" because the interns cannot get through even for an interview, so centers would rather just keep these interns on in their current roles instead of hiring someone new. Additionally, the people getting through HR often have no experience in higher education, and instead come from K-12 or industry. Please let us know if there is any recourse we have with HR that will allow advising centers to either view all applicants or request that interns be allowed to count their experience towards the requirements of the job.

RESPONSE: Thank you for raising this concern. CSU’s classification standards for the Student Services Professional (SSP) classification provides four levels in the series (SSP I A/B, SSP II, SSP III, and SSP IV) based upon classification factors and minimum qualifications. The Human Resources Department is reviewing our recruitment and selection processes to leverage the valuable experience that is gained through internships while ensuring alignment within the classification standards. Thank you for the important service you provide to our campus in your role.


CONCERN: I heard that FS has a policy requiring all students to have 24/7 access to a computer or other kind of device. Some of us are struggling just to get anything to eat and cannot afford to pay for any of the expensive devices out there. Plus, it costs a lot to pay for the web service. Don't you care about us students at all? It seems really strange that you would acknowledge food insecurity and provide a student cupboard, but on the other hand demand that we provide ourselves with expensive laptops, computers, ipads. Please consider what you are doing.

RESPONSE: Thank you for writing with your concern. Our Fresno State General Catalog (http://fresnostate.edu/catalog/academic-regulations/) does state the requirement for students to have access to a computer for coursework. We also understand and empathize with the needs of our students, especially when it comes to health and welfare of our students. We offer services from the Fresno State Student Cupboard to any student with a student identification card. For computer-related services, we offer a wide range of software for free or at reduced rates, free student access to computers in various locations around campus, and a free laptop lending program at our library. DISCOVERe students have access to a free iPad lending program at the DISCOVERe hub. Regarding student financial aid, students have a books and supplies portion of financial aid that can be allocated toward a computer. A student can also request a cost-of-attendance adjustment for the purchase of a computer. For more information about financial aid options, please contact the Fresno State financial aid office (http://www.fresnostate.edu/studentaffairs/financialaid/). 


 

POSTED ON 09/14/17

CONCERN: Your 6/15/17 feedback response to the question about "diversity" and changing racial demographics is incomplete. You stated the number of Latino students has increased, but that can be attributed to the growing number of Latino students graduating from high schools and community colleges who meet our campus' admissions requirements."

While the demographics in our local area continue to change, Fresno State also gives admission preference to students from predominantly Hispanic high schools in distant areas, including Monterey, San Luis Obispo, and Santa Barbara counties. These high schools are all in ""local areas of admission"" for other CSU campuses yet Fresno State gives these students admission preference to our campus as well. This advantage is only granted to students from certain high schools in these far-flung areas, however. The only similarity among the favored schools is that they have a very high percentage of Hispanic students. Most of these outlying high schools are the least racially diverse (by a true definition of diversity) and poorest performing academically in their counties. I have not found another impacted CSU campus that grants admission preference to geographically distant high school students.

Why does Fresno State grant admission preference in these distant counties only to certain high schools that meet a certain racial profile? If Fresno State is trying to attract the best students why would it grant preference to students from the academically weakest schools? If Fresno State is really interested in ""diversity"" why not grant admission preference to high schools that are truly diverse?

The answer cannot be that Fresno State has historical ties to the favored schools; the university's self-designation as impacted should do away with ties based only on past practices. Lowering the percentage of all racial/ethnic groups except one in the student body does not make us more diverse.

RESPONSE: Fresno State's 25,000 student body is more diverse and more academically well prepared than at any time in its 107-year history. We have increased our admissions requirements in recent years because we do not have adequate resources from the State to accommodate all academically-eligible students from inside and outside of the Central Valley. In doing so, we continue to review agreements that have been in place for many years with high schools outside of the Valley. These agreements resulted from strong relationships between those high schools and Fresno State faculty and administration in our schools and colleges, including the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology. This has helped to ensure that students from areas of the state that do not have access to uniquely strong programs (including agriculture) have an opportunity to enroll at Fresno State if they meet our admissions requirements. The significant enrollment of Latino students at those high schools is not the reason for us maintaining these agreement. In fact, most high schools in California now have significant enrollments of Latino students because of demographic trends. Similar agreements like ours exist between many other CSU campuses and high schools outside of their region. For example, many CSU campuses in Northern California have agreements of this kind with high schools in the Los Angeles area. The current state of admissions -- with so many talented and diverse students -- who want to come to Fresno State requires us to continue reviewing our policies and procedures to make sure they are fair to all academically-eligible students.


 

POSTED ON 06/15/17

CONCERN: Fresno State should take a look at the dance team. I was discriminated against three times in trying out and not making the team. It seems the director wants all the dancers to have the same skin color and hair. That is not diversity, and minorities will look at that team and not want to try out because they will feel intimidated by the white dancers.

RESPONSE: First and foremost, thank you for you your time, passion and concerns. Members of the athletic staff will have discussions with the spirit team coaching staff and their advisor.


 

POSTED ON 05/08/17

CONCERN: I would like to see a major expo aligned with the New Student Convocation. It is nice to have a celebration of new students, but it could be more productive if they have a chance to meet with representatives from their major departments, find out how to seek advising, learn of any materials they might need, etc. If a student isn't certain about his/her declared major, seeing what is available right at the start will help with making the decision earlier. Maybe it's possible to have some tables set up in the lobby of the Save Mart Center that students can visit between the convocation and the party. Advising sheets, road maps and program information can be available there.

RESPONSE: Thank you for the suggestion. We have done this in the past and invited all to participate in a fair-like atmosphere. We will do more to increase participation levels from academic departments. If you have specific ideas, please contact Vice President Frank Lamas.


CONCERN: I am amazed at the number of students who have no idea that we have the Student Cupboard. You should try working on advertising it. Also, it's so far from other points on campus. I believe if there were additional, smaller locations, more students would be aware of it. The food pantry could be on “wheels” -- one of those carts filled with food that does not need to be kept cold and be at a certain location at a certain time. This gives students access and it brings awareness.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your concern. We have promoted the Cupboard and advertised in a variety of ways across the campus starting with orientation, but we are open to your additional ideas. Unfortunately, we are not able to do your meals on wheels idea for a variety of regulatory, staffing and budgetary issues.


CONCERN: I am a student who lives in Visalia. If there were more classes offered at the Visalia Campus that would be awesome, because driving back and forth is not easy. Also when I have assignments to do with fellow students it’s hard to accomplish them when most if not all my colleagues live in Fresno or in the area. Also, most events happen on the Fresno campus at night -- again when I'm not in Fresno or on campus. Sometimes professors assign these events as extra credit and I would love to be able to participate, but again it’s impossible sometimes. So maybe just awareness about this issue, maybe offer more events in Visalia, so it’s easy to acquire extra credit.

RESPONSE: We are aware of the journey our South Valley students make to campus. We have partnered with the city of Visalia’s V-Line to provide bus transportation between campus and Visalia. As you note, we have partnered with College of Sequoias and now have the Fresno State Visalia Campus on the south edge of that campus (1945 W. Meadow Lane). Our goal is to provide commuter students more on-site GE courses; select undergraduate degrees for upper division transfer students; and graduate degrees.

We are launching the Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Business Administration for upper-division transfer students in August 2017. We are also taking applications this fall semester for the Blended Liberal Studies/Multiple Subject Teaching Credential that will begin fall of 2018. We are diligent in our efforts to add more upper division GE courses for fall of 2017 and thereafter. Please continue checking our website at http://fresnostate.edu/cge/visalia/  for updates.

We also have online platforms available to students to work on group projects or assignments from off campus. You may want to consider visiting the DISCOVERe Hub in the library for available options. When it comes to extra credit for classes, you will find faculty to be very understanding and accommodating. You may want to look at the events and activities offered at College of the Sequoias, West Hills College-Lemoore or Porterville College and ask your professors to consider these as extra credit for the class.


CONCERN: I am very disappointed in this university. My fiancé, who is also a student, has been harassed multiple times by employees about her support dog. She has had problems in the library multiple times, and from other buildings around campus, even when she just needs to use the bathroom. In fact, she doesn't even feel comfortable going into the library anymore due to this problem. However when I am with her and the support dog, no one ever says anything and she feel like she is bring targeted.

RESPONSE: In order to protect everyone’s safety, the library must ensure that all animals that enter the building are designated as guide or service animals as required by the campus Policy on the Use of University Building and Grounds. If an animal is not clearly marked as a service animal, our Public Safety Assistants must inquire about its status. If you’d like, you can always visit the library’s Circulation desk and inform a Public Safety Assistant (PSA) of your situation when you enter the building with your animal.


STUDENTS CONCERN: I am a student parent at Fresno state. I cannot always get a sitter for my child when I have to be at the college. There is currently no place where my child can have fun and run around safely. I know I speak for a lot of student parents who cannot get into the childcare program at Fresno State - we would like a place to let our children run around and play safely, preferably indoors because of the chance of bad weather. I believe that if there is enough room to build a new Union, there can be enough room to build a reasonably sized children's play place. I am prepared to market this idea to the community and begin private funding for this, if necessary.

Another suggestion is to place Koala Care changing stations in ALL bathrooms - male and female. It is inexpensive and it is a great need for single parents, especially single fathers.

RESPONSE: We recognize there is a need for additional childcare services for students, faculty and staff. Currently we have play areas available only within our licensed childcare sites. There are no plans at this time to create any outdoor play areas for young children. We have changing stations in the restrooms in our Satellite Student Union, but recognize we need to add more, especially in buildings like the Library and the University Student Union.


CONCERN: Free or discounted on-campus daycare would be amazing.

RESPONSE: Childcare services are provided free for most students but we are not able to provide a discount for faculty and staff. Our childcare centers are required to be self-supporting and the fees paid help to ensure a quality childcare program that is accredited and certified.

 

POSTED ON 03/30/17

CONCERN: As a third-year international student here, I feel like the international students don't have a voice at Fresno State. We pay more tuition but we are not represented in the student government. We hope that we can have an international student senator at large to represent our needs in the student government and so that we may have greater influence and opportunity to help both the nation and international students.

RESPONSE: Student government is the purview of the student body and I encourage students to contact them directly with concerns. We have forwarded this concern to the president of Associated Students Inc.


CONCERN: I was shocked, saddened and appalled at the Feb. 8 ASI meeting. The 15-plus minutes of public comments of why there should be a senator for diversity, inclusion and equity was followed by uneducated views from some of the ASI senators. My suggestion is that these senators should be open to having hearings where students can ask them questions on why they are fit for the position. Not a lot of students vote because there is a lack of connection between the student body and ASI. Fresno State's logo includes “diversity,” but it was clear on Feb. 8 that people who held these positions seemed to care more about their agenda than advocating for students.

RESPONSE: Student government is the purview of the student body and I encourage students to contact them directly with concerns. We have forwarded this concern to the president of Associated Students Inc.


CONCERN: I am a proud parent and staff member at Fresno State. Can we perhaps start a new tradition with 2017 Graduation Ceremonies to recognize / acknowledge the parents and their adult children who are graduating from this fine university?

RESPONSE: Thank you for this suggestion. I will discuss it with the Cabinet.


CONCERN: My nephew is in English 167 and English 114 and there are students in these classes who do not have the necessary books (in the second week of classes) because they are not available in the bookstore or online. Why are students waiting for these books? The professors have ordered these books (twice) and still no books. Students without this course material are beginning the semester already stressed.

RESPONSE: Our Kennel Bookstore does its best to ensure that we have enough book titles based on student enrollment, but we will share the concern with our bookstore staff.


CONCERN: I am disturbed but not surprised to see the blatant political bias of the campus newspaper. Whatever happened to unbiased, balanced reporting?

RESPONSE: The Collegian is a student-financed and student-run news organization that, while advised by faculty and staff, cannot be directed in terms of opinion or content. The student-staff is protected by free speech guarantees at both the state and federal level.  The Collegian welcomes responses such as letters to the editor.


CONCERN: How can our faculty, staff and the Fresno community support Fresno State international students during this time? I'm especially concerned about those who may not be able to travel back to their countries over the holiday breaks, either because of the current ban or concerns about future actions. Will University housing be opened over holidays for these students? Would it be possible to build connections with local families so these students have a local "adopted" family to spend time with during breaks?

RESPONSE: Your compassionate care for international students during this period of uncertainties is greatly appreciated. The impact affects not only students from the identified countries but also those who have families or friends in those countries. Others might fear that their countries will later be identified. Also, some students feel the general loss of the confidence of welcome as foreigners in the U.S.

In order to support international students, sensitivity and compassion is important. Some may welcome the opportunities to have someone hear their feelings while others prefer to have their private space honored. It may serve international students well if faculty and staff show genuine welcome and support to them as they would have regardless of the present situation. University Courtyard is open over all holiday breaks for those students living there. An attempt will be made to accommodate students needing housing on an emergency basis based on space availability. Students needing housing over the summer can all be accommodated on campus as well. International students have been provided information about local communities that are available to provide support.


CONCERN: To help students remember when they can seek immediate assistance, I propose a campus-wide Walk-in Wednesday. The Career Development Center, University Advising Center, College of Social Science Advising Center and the College of Arts and Humanities Advising Center already have this in place. Since this is crossing lines within Student Affairs and Academic, it would be great to have a campus initiative to offer all day walk-ins throughout student-focused services to promote services available and show a collaborative effort to student success.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. Vice President Lamas and Provost Zelezny will discuss this proposal with their teams. Most, if not all, of our student affairs and enrollment offices already have walk-in hours or it is easy to schedule an appointment within a short time. You are correct, student success is our No. 1 priority and we work collaboratively across the divisions to make that happen

POSTED ON 02/09/17

CONCERN: I suggest that to enhance the football culture on campus students should have free admission to all sports games with access using just their student Bulldog card. I know this will make more students come to the games and have a deeper Bulldog spirit.

RESPONSE: Currently football is the only athletic activity that requires a student to purchase a ticket ($15 single game, $60 season ticket) and these tickets can be downloaded to their mobile device and or card. All other sporting events are free, by just showing your student ID. We have eliminated the paper ticket for students. We have had and will continue to talk with the student body on the value of the ticket and pricing, along with discussions with our senior staff and chief financial officer to better understand the financial impact to our budget. Hope to see you at the men’s basketball game on Feb. 18 as we try to set the all-time student attendance record!


CONCERN: I a student in a master's degree program. I believe that it is an issue that Fresno State does not give plus and minus grades. Graduates applying to other programs after their state college career is over already are competing with people who may be the beneficiaries of generous or even inflated grading. My opinion is, lack of plus and minus grades likely encourages instructors to grade students down rather than up. The institution may be trying to maintain its quality and standing, but this is not the way to do it, to follow a grading policy which harms otherwise qualified students in their ability to move on to programs at other institutions.

RESPONSE: The topic of grading systems has been researched and debated extensively across college campuses in the U.S. as well as here at Fresno State. There are advantages and disadvantages to both the letter grade only and the plus/minus grading systems. While not everyone agrees, the research is clear. The impact of a plus/minus grading has negligible impact on students’ GPAs and acceptance rates into graduate school. While the issue re-emerges periodically, to date, our faculty have consistently expressed their wishes to stay with our current grading system, citing that the disadvantages outweigh the advantages.


CONCERN: As a concerned college student I am writing to you today about the high and rising costs of college tuition fees.I and others attend college to have the best future as possible and to better ourselves as well.Even though college can be challenging at times, that is what keeps me motivated to finish.It would be greatly appreciated if you took this issue into consideration.

RESPONSE: I share your concern about the increased cost of higher education across the United States.Fortunately, the CSU system is one of the most affordable university systems in the nation.Fresno State currently charges the lowest tuition and fees of any campus in the CSU system.Due to support from the state and federal governments as well as private support, we provided $230 million in student financial aid in 2015-16.About 80% of this aid was in the form of grants and scholarships.The average loan indebtedness for a Fresno State graduate is $18,000, which is substantially less than the $30,000 average debt level for university graduates across the nation.You can be helpful in this area by urging your elected state legislators to fund the CSU system at levels that enable us to keep tuition and fees affordable.


CONCERN: Need better staff, more interaction between students and better use of materials by professors.

RESPONSE:Over the past four years, we have added faculty and staff members to enhance student success.Our ability to hire more faculty and staff is contingent upon additional state funding.We have invested more funding for faculty professional development, which has led many of them to re-design their courses using more affordable materials of comparable or better quality.For example, the DISCOVERe Program has led to greater engagement between faculty and students and a 70 percent lower cost for books and related course materials.We will continue to utilize innovative practices to enhance teaching and learning.


CONCERN: If the students vote No on the new USU in March, do we have a commitment from administration to not move forward and/or to not raise tuition to include additional money slated for a new USU? Will the administration respect the students’ wishes that now is not the right time for a new USU and attempt to raise additional funds to lessen the impact on future students for a future build?

RESPONSE: Fresno State students are empowered to determine the fate of the proposed new student union during the upcoming election in March. The fee needed to build the new union would not be charged until the project is completed.If the new union is not supported by a majority of those students who vote in the upcoming election, I will seek input from the ASI leadership and others on campus to determine whether it should be placed on the ballot for consideration during a future election.I will not impose a fee for this project without a majority of those students who vote to approve it in a campus election.


CONCERN: Fresno State has miscommunicated with me multiple times. I was dropped from my courses on Dec 7, 2016. Yes, my fault; I didn't have a chance to pay on time. I did not get a chance to re-enroll into my courses for spring 2017 and may not get to graduate in May 2017 because of the staff's lack of accurate information.

RESPONSE: Fee payment deadlines are posted on the semester calendar and it indicates students will be dropped for non-payment. You can find the spring 2017 calendar here: http://fresnostate.edu/studentaffairs/classschedule/calendars/2017spring.html. If you have questions about how to re-enroll into classes after being dropped from classes, you can contact the Admissions and Records office at: 278.2261 or stop by the Student Services Center located in the Joyal North Lobby. If you have difficulty in the future, contact our financial aid or accounting office to see if we can help you prior to the payment deadlines.


CONCERN: Fresno State could improve its International Student Program. I live in Graves Hall and have spoken with several of the students and have discovered they were completely lost when they arrived at Fresno State. Their welcoming ceremony taught them basics of the University (I.e.: where the food courts are located and where the Health Center is.); however, the students were completely unaware of where to receive help with their academics, such as advisory centers.

RESPONSE: All new incoming international students are required to attend international student orientation, which provides an overview of university resources, as well as an afternoon of general advising and college-specific advising. New students are informed upon their arrival of the college where their major is located in and connected to the appropriate advising team during the advising sessions. The International Student Services and Programs (ISSP) office has received increased support from college advising centers which provide advisors on-site during the orientation's advising session to assist students in registering. This session helps new students identify the centers they need to visit throughout the semester to receive advising specific to their major, general education, or Fresno State degree requirements. If international students are ever in doubt as to which advising center to visit, ISSP is happy to provide contact information. ISSP is located in Joyal 256 on the 2nd floor and open from 8 am to 5 pm.


CONCERN: The server for the Health Center was down multiple times last semester. This interferes with making appointments as well as receiving test results. When will the servers be updated so that this does not happen again or as frequently as it has?

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. The Student Health and Counseling Center strives to provide convenient and efficient services to our students. This included upgrading our electronic medical system this past fall semester. During this transition, we did experience a short delay with the portal, but fortunately we were able to resolve the issue quickly. We would be happy to address any specific issues you may have experienced. Please feel free to contact the Student Health and Counseling Center Administration.


CONCERN: In the last version of Feedback a Psychology major asked a very important question about course offerings in Area D. The answer given on the Feedback page completely missed the point the student was making.

RESPONSE: Thank you for this follow up. Immediately after the Feedback was published, we heard from the chair of the Psychology Department and updated the response to the student’s concern as follows: “The courses offered for spring in Psychology's Area D did fill up quickly, so the Psychology Department took corrective action in early December, and added three additional Area D courses for spring, creating 80 additional seats. Graduating seniors should be able to find a class that meets their needs.”


 

POSTED ON 01/04/17

CONCERN: After one year as a student, I found out today that students may utilize confidential medical services on campus. All sounds great, until you have the need for services. Then, after sitting on hold two times for an excess of 10 minutes each call, someone finally answers the telephone. Also, one cannot see a nurse or anyone in the medical staff without a medical history. The medical history questionnaire is not only very unclear, but also impossible for me to complete because I don’t have access to information required. Therefore, I am unable to receive an appointment without that unclear, unnecessary form filled out. Is all of this accurate?

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. Your comments provide us an opportunity to improve our service delivery. Your experience is not typical of how our online scheduling functions and as such, we are very interested in working with you to research what happened. Please reach out to the Student Health and Counseling Center Administrative office at 278.6715 and reference your comment. We can then schedule some time to work with you to determine what is going wrong and work to find a remedy.


CONCERN: As someone who works almost exclusively with first-time freshmen, I am increasingly concerned about students’ lack of preparedness after attending Dog Days. Entire classes claim to have not been introduced to Blackboard, Safe Assign, Eduroam, The Student Cupboard, etc. Rather, from their accounts, Dog Days mainly focuses on "No Means No" and alcohol awareness. While I think these are important to impress upon incoming students, I am concerned that Dog Days is failing to prepare them for the actual course work. What is being taught at Dog Days, and how can we improve this program so that incoming students are ready and able to succeed at Fresno State?

RESPONSE: Thank you for your concerns regarding DOG DAYS: New Student Orientation to our attention. The primary purpose of DOG DAYS is to help new students transition into the University. It is jam-packed with important information that is delivered in several formats. An online pre-orientation is required of all students prior to DOG DAYS on-site attendance. Here students are introduced to basic campus technology and links are provided for deeper exploration. The BARK Book, a new student publication, includes step-by-step information on how to use Blackboard and GradesFirst. Students are also introduced and encouraged to use campus resources including the Student Cupboard. We are always looking for ways to improve the orientation experience and will consider your suggestions.

TRAFFIC

POSTED ON 09/19/18

CONCERN: It would be helpful to receive notifications when high-school graduation ceremonies are taking place in the Save Mart Center, as this affects employees leaving campus. With Barton Avenue being closed, there is additional traffic leaving to the east of campus and trying to exit as others are trying to enter. In addition, it would be nice if the traffic patterns could be the same for all events...this year, certain gates/intersections were open on one day during the graduation period but closed/blocked on the next day. How does one plan ahead when you don't know which routes will be open or closed?

RESPONSE: We regret the inconvenience you may have experienced while we reconstructed Barton Avenue. The Barton Avenue repaving project has now been completed and normal traffic flow has resumed. Traffic-advisory notifications are sent when planned events are expected to significantly alter standard commute routes. Using the same traffic pattern for all events is not feasible. Several factors such as event location, day, time and attendance influence event traffic plans.


POSTED ON 06/20/18

CONCERN: The Fresno State Carpool program needs to be audited on at least an annual basis to ensure participants still qualify to participate. As we all know, parking on campus is expensive and available spots are very hard to find for faculty, staff and students. Employees who have been part of this program for many years no longer qualify for this program, however, they still participate in the program and park in in the preferred carpool parking spaces. 

We as employees should be held to a higher standard and not continue to participate in programs that we are no longer eligible for. An audit of the program would hopefully help to remind our employees of the criteria and free up carpool spots for those that really qualify.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your concern and observation. Our carpool program is one of many alternative-transportation initiatives. Employees are encouraged to update their carpool eligibility regularly, and our Parking staff actively monitor and ensure user compliance of this program.


 

POSTED ON 04/30/18

CONCERN: Perhaps the third time is the charm. The concrete circle at Barstow and Chestnut is still falling apart with large chunks of concrete missing or broken. You indicated that you would notify the city, and if they didn’t do it you would have the university do it. It’s an eyesore. And I would like to know why the fencing at O’Neill Park uses poles that weren’t designed for a chain link fence. I assume the fencing is temporary and the university would re-construct the fence with proper poles. If one comes in from the west to the university, one wouldn’t see how the east side entrance looks coming in on Barstow, which needs to be improved.

RESPONSE: I am pleased to let you know that the City of Fresno repaired the roundabout in early April. The fencing at O’Neill Park is a temporary structure as we develop a more expansive improvement plan for the park.


CONCERN: The shuttle system is awesome! One suggestion that I really hope you will consider, which I believe will make the lives of a number of students much easier, is to include one more bus stop for the shuttle that is near the Science I or Science II buildings. Almost all students will attend at least one class at Fresno State for either their major (math, business, chemistry, biology, nursing, the natural sciences, etc.) or general education in the following buildings: Craig's School of Business, Science I, or Science II. While I appreciate the shuttle system for simply existing, I really think many students will benefit from having a bus stop near one of these buildings.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. Our Traffic Operations staff will review the feasibility of adding an additional stop. Our goal is to maintain 20-minute wait times.


 

POSTED ON 01/16/18

CONCERN: I was walking by the V-Line bus stop in front of Joyal and noticed that there were students trying to get some shade behind the bushes while they were waiting. Then I started thinking about when it rains, there isn't anything there for them to stand under. Hoping the V-Line gets enough use that a shelter could be installed for the shade and rain protection.

Also, that sidewalk is too narrow. Bikes and pedestrians don't fit together. Wish we had bike paths on campus.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your concern. Ridership on the V-line bus continues to grow, and we are mindful of this need. In fact, we are working to add shelters to some of our Bulldog Express stops.


CONCERN: Can you please figure out an option for making a left turn out of Lot O? You can't see the cars driving south on Maple Avenue because of all the parked cars in the outer student lots. You have to creep out past the view of the cars, cross your fingers, and hope you don't get side-swiped! Perhaps a mirror at the stop sign that allows drivers to see if cars are coming south on Maple Ave. Right now, it's an accident just waiting to happen!

RESPONSE: Thank you for reporting this. We have asked Traffic Operations to evaluate this issue and to recommend any improvements.


CONCERN: This semester the gridlock on the South side of campus has been terrible at 5 pm. Any chance that Backer could be opened up at Shaw as an exit point? Between Woodrow and Maple there isn't any traffic because everyone is trying to get out on Woodrow to East Shaw or Maple to West Shaw. It has taken me 20 minutes to get off campus after work. My concern is that if we had an emergency is this what we will have to go through to exit campus on the South side.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback, and we are sorry that you are experiencing this inconvenience. The reality is that we have heavy traffic (egress) at 5 p.m., and it is a challenge across campus and is not specific to any particular area. Our parking lots and roadways serve more than 3,000 employees and nearly 25,000 students and there are certain peak times when we experience congestion. We deploy traffic control personnel at 5 p.m. to help manage traffic flow on campus roads. The Fresno State Police Department maintains the capability to control traffic signals if we were faced with an emergency situations. Backer Avenue was closed many years ago due to traffic concerns expressed by the City of Fresno.  


 

POSTED ON 06/15/17

CONCERN: It would be good to have a bus from Kingsburg to Fresno State and back, or make a pickup stop at Kingsburg from the Visalia V-Line.

RESPONSE: That is a great idea. Operational decisions regarding the V-Line bus route are made by our partners at the City of Visalia. We will be sure to share your suggestion with them.


CONCERN: It would be ideal if the university would hire more support staff to tend to important administrative issues required to help the university run smoothly. There are many areas where this is needed. For example, faculty reimbursements are consistently delayed and lost, requiring faculty to follow up for months to ensure paperwork is being processed.

RESPONSE: We are always mindful of opportunities where we can streamline current university business processes. We are currently in the process of evaluating our Accounts Payable processes and have identified some short-term and long-term solutions. The recommendation from the CAIFE team that has been working on this business process this past year is to implement an online work flow system that allows for electronic approvals and eliminates paper being moved around for approval.  In addition, this new workflow system would allow for the end-user to track the status of their reimbursement.


CONCERN: I believe there should be greater efforts in maximizing the pedestrian experience both on and off campus. There is a great disconnect between the university and the walkability of Shaw Avenue, with narrow sidewalks, a lack of bicycle lanes and a lack of trees to serve as a buffer between pedestrians and the high volume traffic along Shaw. As a former FAX rider, my personal safety as both a walker and a bicyclist were constantly at risk upon crossing near Shaw and Cedar.

RESPONSE: Fresno State is committed to working with the City of Fresno to identify opportunities where we can improve our pedestrian walkways as well as our bicycle paths. We will share this concern with our partners at the City of Fresno in an upcoming meeting with them to discuss improvement of the street lighting along Bulldog Lane and Millbrook avenues.


CONCERN: Please add the option to add screenshots or jpg as supporting documentation.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. We will consider this as a potential enhancement for the President's Feedback page in the future.


CONCERN: The most important improvement we can make in the digital age is updating and renovating our Fresno State website to be more appealing for both newcomers and students. Many of us have problems finding the most accurate and recent information about careers and degrees.

RESPONSE: We are starting discussions about the next version of the Fresno State website. We will be asking students to participate in discussions to help us shape the future version of the website.


 

POSTED ON 05/08/17

CONCERN: The student bus shuttle is great but it only travels through the north side of campus and into the student living complexes. The problem is the south end of school near Shaw Avenue has many buildings and classes that are far from any of the bus stops offered today. At least two more stops -- one by the Kremen building and one near the library or by the laboratory classes -- would be great. Also, it would be great if students could take at least one nonstudent with them on the buses since there are times students bring along a friend who attends another school to study or participate in events.

RESPONSE: Traffic Operations staff are currently evaluating locations for a Bulldog Express stop on the south end of campus. Due to the fund source that is providing this service and CSU insurance requirements, at this time only students, faculty, and staff are permitted to travel on the Bulldog Express.


CONCERN: I love the Fresno State shuttle, and am grateful for its services. However, the schedule only gives times for when it starts in the morning and closes at night. In order to figure out when it arrives at stops between these timeframes, I have to continuously add 15 minutes until I get to the time I need. I have missed the shuttle, and class, as a result. Can a full schedule for the day, and for every stop, be made? Also, what is the point of having seat belts if wearing them is not enforced?

RESPONSE: A printable route map and schedule is available on the Traffic Operations website, https://www.fresnostate.edu/adminserv/police/transportation/bus/shuttle.html . The National Highway Safety Administration does not require the use of seat belts on transit buses such as those used to operate the Bulldog Express. Bulldog Express buses are equipped with seat belts and posted signage encourages riders to use them.


CONCERN: I'd like to see more cooperation with the city transit system to make it more useable for our students. Many universities have a central hub where buses traveling different directions can be accessed, meaning multiple routes are making the university a destination, if not the end of a line.

RESPONSE: Fresno State collaborates with multiple local transit agencies. Employees and students can ride FAX and Clovis Transit buses free, anytime, by swiping their Bulldog Card. The University has also partnered with the City of Visalia to provide transit service from Visalia to our campus. Operating seven days per week, the V-Line bus stops at the Maple Avenue turnaround near Keats Avenue. For additional information on new sustainable transportation options for students and employees, please visit: http://www.fresnostate.edu/adminserv/police/transportation/bus/index.html.


CONCERN: I believe Traffic Operations should provide warning tickets before issuing parking citations. The parking officers should run the license plate of each vehicle that does not have a parking pass visible to make sure that vehicle does have a parking pass issued to before citing. If the license plate indicates they have a parking pass issued to that vehicle but is not visible, I feel parking officers should issue a warning citation first rather than a $50 citation. If multiple warning citations have been issued but individuals still fail to provide proof of parking pass, then it will be ideal to issue a parking citation.

RESPONSE: We recognize the inconvenience and frustration, but our current system is limited and does not give us this functionality. Our future plan is to implement new software that will provide the ability to check license plate numbers to ensure a permit has been issued for that vehicle in the event that a permit is not displayed.


 

POSTED ON 01/04/17

CONCERN: I've noticed along Millbrook and East Bulldog Lane several students driving really fast and recklessly. Many students who ride the campus shuttle cross the street and have almost gotten hit by oncoming cars, many of which are from the sororities/frat houses. A crosswalk or visible posted speed limit signs would be a big help! Or even stop signs on the shuttle. Maybe Fresno State can team up with the city of Fresno to make this happen and prevent an accident.

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing this concern. We always want to know how we can ensure the safety of our students and pedestrians. This area around our campus is actually under the jurisdictional authority of Fresno Police Department, but we will also alert our University Police Department officers to monitor as well.


CONCERN: One day while trying to exit out of the dorm parking lot, I jumped in a long line of cars, extending almost all the way back toward the Shaw side of the parking lot. After being there for about 10 minutes and moving only a few car lengths forward, a security guard drove by on the sidewalk, southbound, waving cars to follow him. He opened up a gate for us that led to (I believe) Barton Avenue, near the Health Center. Why isn't this gate open at all times? Traffic into, and especially out of, the dorm parking lot is a nightmare!

RESPONSE: The gate you reference is kept closed for security reasons. On occasion, Traffic Operations staff will open that gate to mitigate traffic.


CONCERN: The Bulldog Express shuttles are greatly appreciated by students, and widely used. However, having only one stop that is feasibly close to classes (by the North Gym) makes it tougher on students when the buses are no longer on schedule. While I understand that safety is a concern regarding the stops over on the west end of campus, I still feel that having two stops -- the stadium stop and the athletic department stop -- could benefit those coming from the Greek houses, rather than three stops in a very short distance of each other. May I suggest a stop over by the Science buildings? It would benefit students with classes in a large number of buildings, including Science I & II, Peters and the Craig Business. A possible stop to consider would be next to the vineyards of the Enology Department on Barstow next to Science II, which is already regulated by crossing guards. If stop numbers are to be kept, then perhaps consider placing the schedule on a 20-minute route, rather than 15.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion.


CONCERN: I have noticed that none of the women's restrooms on campus seem to have dispensers for feminine hygiene products. The only place on campus where these products are available is the Student Health Center, which is inconvenient. I think installing these machines in restrooms would be a real benefit for faculty, staff and students.

RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion.


CONCERN: Every year in fall before the heating is switched on for the winter season, the Science I Building is an even more hostile work environment for a few weeks: my office is 60 to 63 degrees, my classroom is well below 65 degrees. The course I teach in runs for three hours and is a writing class, requiring students to type a lot. After 30 minutes, everybody's fingers are just too numb to type.  I invite you to set your thermostat to 62 degrees for a week in your offices to share our experience. I personally find those work conditions unacceptable. Science I has (1) insufficient maintenance, with problems unfixed for years: broken locks on bathroom stalls; extremely filthy stair cases, walls, doors, hand rails (caked in decades of hand grease); (2) poor management: no running hot water from March to October while the heating is off; no room-by-room temperature control in offices and classrooms (just maximum cooling in the summer, maximum heating in the winter).

RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing this concern. We have reported the issues noted to our facilities and custodial management and asked that they be addressed. In the future, you can submit specific work orders using our online customer service form (found here). As you may know, we are investing $20 million over the next two years to address our deferred maintenance backlog around the campus, so knowing about this situation is very helpful as we prioritize future project priorities.


 

POSTED ON 11/3/16

CONCERN: Any day now there is going to be a major accident in P31. Apparently it is not clear to most people that traffic in that lot should flow in a certain direction. I often see people going the wrong way at high rates of speed. Something needs to be done before someone gets hurt. Perhaps better signage at the end of each row? Or perhaps repainting the arrows on the ground might help. It is a very dangerous parking lot.

RESPONSE: Thank you. We share your concern and have advised our public safety staff to take note of this concern since this is more of a traffic enforcement issue. We will be repainting the one-way arrows and have also placed an order to replace the existing one-way signage in the lot.


CONCERN: The shuttle buses purchased a great investment but may be a bit too big. Our public transportation is hardly utilized and we might not have as many students taking advantage of this service.

RESPONSE: Ridership on the shuttle has gone up considerably and there are many times when the seats are filled. We continue to develop ways to decrease demand for on-campus parking.


CONCERN: The road between Science 1 and Science 2 has a sign that is clearly marked no stopping, and yet every day I seem to get stuck behind people who are dropping students off. Is there a way to add a lane for drop off in that area since people seem to be too lazy to drop off in P6 nearby?

RESPONSE: We will look into adding a drop off lane. In the meanwhile we will alert traffic operations to monitor this area.


 

POSTED ON 8/25/16

CONCERN: I have noticed more than once this week, golf cart drivers going very fast on the sidewalk when people are present – even when there was no traffic on the street and no reason the golf cart needed to use the sidewalk. I think it is time for a refresher on safely driving golf carts on campus.

RESPONSE: Thank you for calling this to our attention.  Safety is always a priority.  Please report any incidents immediately to Public Safety including if possible the department name on the golf cart. Golf carts are used by many University departments for a variety of purposes including transporting disabled students, delivering mail and supplies and providing catering services. Employees who are authorized to drive these carts are required to complete a driving authorization process, pass a defensive driving fundamental course and abide by all applicable vehicle laws. Employees misusing University vehicles are subject to disciplinary action. We encourage all managers who authorize use of golf carts to review safety standards and appropriate pathways for use with employees or students who are authorized to drive.


 

POSTED ON 6/29/2016

CONCERN: Two words: speed bumps. Too often have I seen drivers speed through our campus both on streets and in parking lots. Many drivers don't even stop at stop signs or crosswalks opting to blame anyone or anything that comes in their way. Speed bumps would help force irresponsible drivers to slow down and help protect pedestrians from harm. I know the university can't do anything to keep bad drivers off the road but it can at least do something to force them to stop driving at such dangerous speeds.

RESPONSE: We agree and have identified locations for speed bumps and rumble strips. Our plan is to install them upon completion of roadwork following our electrical infrastructure project (fall 2016). Please be advised that campus speed limit signs were recently updated and 11 solar-powered flashing stop signs have been installed at high-traffic intersections.


CONCERN: Please build the bridge for the students to cross at every stop sign. It is dangerous to cross.

RESPONSE: Unfortunately this not a cost effective approach and bridges need to be ADA accessible. We have our Public Safety and parking officers monitor traffic in order to ensure a safe environment for all pedestrians and vehicles.


CONCERN: There have been several construction/heavy machinery vehicles driving on campus over the past several months, working on our infrastructure upgrades, which is great for the entire campus community. However, within the past month, I witnessed two near-misses with large bulldozers and students who obviously had their headphone volume set too loud to hear the large tractors as they drove through campus. I am surprised these large machinery operators don't have escorts guiding them as they drive on campus, especially during class changes.

RESPONSE: Thank you for reporting this. We have advised our campus construction safety and project team and will ensure that there are precautions in place when needing to have large machinery navigate areas where pedestrians are walking.


CONCERN: The three-way stop located in front of the Alumni House and Lot P2 (solar panels parking lot) need to be modified. There should be at least two "right lane must turn right" signs installed. Additionally, the arrows that have worn off over the years need to be repainted on the road. Perhaps the solid yellow lines should also be replaced with broken yellow lines to allow lane changes. I’ve noticed that many drivers are making a bad habit of turning left from the right side of the lane. I was nearly involved in an accident three times during the fall semester by those different drivers and witnessed a student encounter the same situation.

RESPONSE: Thank you for this suggestion. This issue was recently discussed and is a priority on our parking project maintenance list. It will be fixed this summer.


CONCERN: Every day I notice that people are driving faster and faster on Keats from Maple to Campus Drive. When the New Science Building was opened they striped off the street between the Old and New Science buildings for pedestrian crossing. I believe that if they did the same thing between Education and Music it might deter drivers from speeding through that section.

RESPONSE: Thank you. We have advised University Police of this safety concern, The current campus master plan envisions a pedestrian pathway (no vehicle traffic) along Keats Avenue between Maple and Campus Drive similar to the area south of the Engineering East building along San Ramon Avenue. In the meantime, we will ensure the pedestrian crossings are well marked and identifiable.


 

POSTED ON 5/9/2016

CONCERN: Regarding parking: (1) As a staff member it is quite frustrating to struggle with finding parking in the designated faculty/staff parking lots, especially after lunch. Why are students being issued the yellow restricted parking passes? I have approached several students when I see them because it is very obvious that they are not faculty or staff. They don't want to say how they get the yellow passes. Is there any truth to the rumor that Smittcamp Family Honors College students and student-athletes are afforded restricted parking privileges?

RESPONSE: The only students issued faculty/staff parking permits (yellow) are those in bargaining unit 11-- Academic Student Employees (Graduate and Teaching Assistants). This is per the collective bargaining agreement. In the past, Smittcamp Honors students were provided with faculty/staff parking permits, but that practice was changed several years ago.

(2) This is in response to a concern posted on 01/29/16 regarding student use of faculty parking. As bargaining units consider changes in parking rules for yellow faculty/staff parking spots, please keep in mind that many classes are held after 5 p.m. Many faculty members, including tenure-track and adjunct faculty, have obligations that keep them from arriving to teach prior to 5 p.m. Without the current restrictions of 7 p.m., it would be nearly impossible for these faculty members to find reasonable parking. Please forward these concerns when bargaining units meet to discuss any changes to faculty/staff parking restrictions. Faculty have worked hard to earn their degrees and their positions; they should not have to fight hard for parking spaces in order to fulfill their teaching obligations.

RESPONSE:  We have been in discussions with representatives from CFA regarding the ability to allow students to access faculty/staff parking lots earlier than 7 p.m. CSUEU has agreed to 5:30 p.m.; and discussions are continuing with CFA in an effort to reach agreement.

(3) Parking is way too expensive. I literally have to use my month’s grocery money the month I buy my pass.

RESPONSE:  Fresno State has one of the lowest parking rates in the entire CSU system. We offer a number of transportation options for our students and employees who do not wish to purchase a parking permit. These include bikeway access, the Bulldog Express (our new campus shuttle) and free area bus passes (FAX, V-Line, etc.). For more information, please visit http://fresnostate.edu/adminserv/police/transportation/bus/index.html .

(4) There are many comments on parking and students using restricted parking. I witnessed students getting out of a car while I circled for parking spot as a staff member. I asked the students if in fact they were students, faculty or staff. They said students. I asked how it is they were parking in the restricted faculty/staff parking. They responded that their grandpa used to teach here so they use his emeritus parking pass. I phoned parking and gave the license plate of the car and was told by a staff member that anyone can give their parking pass to someone else to use. She told me that I could sell my pass if I wanted and so long as I didn't report it stolen it could be used by whoever I give it to. Frustrated with the comments, I mentioned that the website states that parking passes are "Nontransferable.” Now I was told "non-transferable" was left up to interpretation! Why is this being allowed and why are we training staff to encourage unlawful behavior?

RESPONSE: We regret that our parking staff provided misinformation and we have corrected this. Emeriti passes are not to be transferred and are not valid for resale. A citation should have been issued. Thank you for bringing this to our attention.

(5) I am repeatedly infuriated with Fresno State's parking. I understand that our campus is impacted, and thus we have limited parking, but I would like to additionally address "faculty" vs. "student" parking. Student parking is not only impacted, but distant from the center of campus, which poses several safety concerns. As both a student (with night classes) and an employee, I am bewildered that you would then change the validity of student passes in faculty lots from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.! There are plenty of open spots for faculty AND students in these lots after 7 p.m., and I now feel both angered and unsafe on this campus.

RESPONSE: We understand and apologize for this frustration. As such, we have been working closely with the student leadership this past year to work toward changing the time when student permits would be allowed to park in faculty/staff parking stalls to earlier than 7 p.m., not later. We have agreement from one bargaining unit to allow access at 5:30 p.m. and we have one more bargaining unit (CFA) that we need to reach agreement with. Our goal is to communicate this new policy in the 2016-17 academic year. In the meanwhile, please don’t forget about Bulldog Express and the Campus Escort service.

(6) Need to have parking available for parents to park and drop off their children to the child care in Family and Food Science Building. There is no parking due to new painted red lines for the large buses.

RESPONSE: We are working with the child care center staff in the Family and Food Science Building to address this issue. We agree that two spots are not sufficient to meet the needs of parents dropping and picking up children. Given this, we have provided parents parking permits to load and unload children safely in other areas. If you are a parent of a child that attends the PFC site at the FFS building and you have not received your permit please contact Derek Brantley in Traffic Operations (dbrantley@csufresno.edu; 278.6709).


CONCERN: regarding carts on campus: (1) It is concerning to see that there are so many carts being driven on this campus. Even more so to see the drivers of these carts texting while they're driving. I almost got hit by one when I was crossing the street and the young girl driving it thought it was funny. She didn't even stop at the stop sign. (2)I had to wait at a crosswalk today for not one but two traffic officer driven golf carts who did not yield to the stop sign or the pedestrian waiting to cross - they just went on through! From my office window, I notice this on a consistent basis. Shouldn't the officers have to abide by the rules as well?

RESPONSE: Thank you for calling this to our attention. We have reported this concern to Public Safety. Golf carts are used by a number of University departments for a number of business purposes including transporting disabled students, delivering mail and supplies and providing University catering. Employees who are authorized to drive these carts are required to complete a driving authorization process, pass a defensive driving fundamental course and abide by all applicable vehicle laws. Employees misusing University vehicles are subject to disciplinary action.


 

POSTED ON 4/4/2016

CONCERN: Are there plans to make the crosswalk on Barstow near the Enology Building safer for students? My suggestion would be for the crosswalk sign to light up (like those around the stop signs) when a student either pushes a button or starts to cross the street. Making it easier for drivers to see students during the day and especially at night would make it easier, and quicker when walking from the main campus to the Enology Unit.

RESPONSE: Yes, there are plans to address this safety concerning. In fact, this will be completed as a part of the Barstow bikeways project during summer 2016.


CONCERN: What can be done to slow down the skateboarders who zoom around and have little regard for walking students who may get in their way? Would it be advantageous for Fresno State to have a separate roadway for walkers and all others using different modes of transportation. I think there would be fewer collisions and walkers would not have to dodge long-borders and scooters from class to class.

RESPONSE: Our active transportation plan outlines a number of strategies to allow the University to better accommodate active and healthy transportation modes for the entire campus community to move to and around campus. The plan recommends separating wheeled devices and pedestrians in some areas, bike lanes in others and the widening of many shared use paths. For more information please visit. http://www.fresnostate.edu/adminserv/police/documents/AlternativeTransportationPlan.pdf