FEEDBACK CONCERNS AND RESPONSES
Search for concerns and responses
Feedback received February 15 – April 7, 2019
Posted on 05/16/19
CONCERN: Improvement: How you address, or not addressing controversial individual(s) on our free speech area. I agree all persons have the right to say what they like, protected by the First Amendment. And I agree they should be allowed to speak freely. Stopping them would be a violation of free speech. However, you should not have to address them and send out a mass email to those who are "offended." It's pointless and a waste of time.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your perspective with me. Please note that the entire campus is open to free speech; there is no specifically designated area for free speech. Our campus community has many thousands of faculty, staff and students, and their awareness of the First Amendment is uneven. I have used occasional communications to the campus community to enhance educational awareness of what is and what is not free speech. In addition, we have sponsored campus forums on free speech that are intended to provide our community with an opportunity to discuss these issues in greater depth. There are also times when it is important for our campus to uphold free speech while also denouncing the content of speech that is inconsistent with our campus’ Principles of Community.
CONCERN: Other CSU's have figured out strategies to allot time for faculty to do research. Tenure-track faculty are expected to do research to be promoted to tenure, but aren't given units in their workload schedule to do so. How can the university expect us to be successful in something we're not allotted time to do?
RESPONSE: Faculty success in both teaching and research is critical to student success. Research and scholarship bring new knowledge to the classroom and offer opportunities for students to learn through experience in labs and in the community beyond the classroom. As one step toward helping faculty to succeed, the faculty collective bargaining agreement provides a reduced teaching load for the first two years of a tenure-track appointment to support faculty in establishing their programs of research, scholarship and/or creative activities that will help them to meet requirements for retention, tenure and promotion. In addition, the Office of Faculty Affairs is looking at current workload practices in departments around campus and on other CSU campuses to identify additional ways to support faculty success and to provide opportunities to help faculty achieve research and teaching goals.
CONCERN: Several concerns about the timing of Spring Break this year were submitted to the President’s Feedback page.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. Perhaps it is time to take another look at this issue. Some CSU campuses tie their break to the middle of the term, and others schedule it to coincide with the Cesar Chavez holiday. Our campus has historically scheduled Spring Break at the same time the local school districts do to aid faculty, staff and student parents. I recognize that the lunar-based calendar that determines Easter does cause some issues. I will discuss this matter with the Cabinet.
CONCERN: Dog Days needs to be revamped. It is currently catered to students around their late teens to very early twenties. As an older transfer student, there were many aspects of the day that were a complete waste of time (campus housing, safe sex talk, etc.). I felt much of the information given was unnecessary for anyone who is older than 25. I know other older students who felt the same way. Maybe consider having a separate Dog Days for transfer students over a certain age.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concerns about transfer students' needs for orientation. Some of the content of orientation, such as campus safety and sexual-assault prevention, are required for all California State University students by the Chancellor's Office. However, we recognize that not all students have the same needs or experiences. We will keep your suggestions in mind as we continue to explore ways to improve the program.
CONCERN: As a student about to graduate, I wish there were a way we (those who are graduating) could do something to honor a faculty/staff member beyond giving a stole. Since Fresno State is a registered arboretum, I would not mind having an area on campus where students can donate a certain amount for a bush or tree in a faculty/staff member's honor (e.g. $15/$25). Not only would it be an alternative option for students, it would help toward the beautification of our entire campus. If this became an option, I would want to be one of the first, if not the first, to donate. Thank you.
RESPONSE: I appreciate your thoughtfulness in wanting to recognize those who have supported you in your educational journey. Tree dedications can be made through the campus Arboretum Committee. Please contact Mike Mosinski, Interim Associate Director of Facilities Services, for more information (559.278.7198 or email@example.com).
CONCERN: The Food Pantry is an amazing free service for our students and is well needed for all of our students. However, our students are given expired food. Is it possible to give our students better choices?
RESPONSE: As orders and donations come through, the Student Cupboard staff reviews items carefully before placing them on the shelves to make sure that they are not past a “best by” or expiration date. Items that are past expiration or damaged are disposed of, while items past a “best by” date are donated or returned to the source where they came from. For any concerns, please contact program coordinator Jessica Medina at 559.278.0866 and/or stop by the Student Cupboard during open hours.
CONCERN: I love the beautiful park-like atmosphere that Facilities has cultivated on the Fresno State campus, including the variety of unique trees. I especially love the native plant garden in front of Science II. I’d like to see more of these water-wise and native plant gardens around campus along with possible plant variety signs. We are missing out on the opportunity to educate our community and neighbors about the beauty and resilience of our California natives. Perhaps horticulture students, or the Sustainability Club could be leveraged to expand and augment the Science II garden.
RESPONSE: Thank you for your appreciation of our campus landscape and arboretum. Our grounds team collaborates with horticulture students on several landscape projects incorporating drought-tolerant and native plants each semester. We incorporate drought-tolerant and native plants in many of the landscapes as new buildings are completed and when existing buildings are renovated. The Student Health and Counseling Center is a recent example. You may also want to visit the Allergy-Free Garden where we have installed plant-identification tags on many of the plants to help educate visitors. We will expand the use of plant-identification tags in other gardens across campus in the future. A great example of a native plant garden is located at the Henry Madden Library. The native plants in this garden are harvested several times each year to use in the weaving of baskets by members of the Table Mountain Rancheria. Finally, the Grounds Department is currently in the early planning stage for a collaborative project with Sustainability Club students to expand the water-wise garden at Science II.
CONCERN: It would be wonderful if Fresno State could provide a Community Garden for faculty, staff and our neighbors somewhere on campus. It would provide a venue for community engagement, provide fresh foods for the Student Cupboard and increase awareness of organic gardening and self-sustainability.
RESPONSE: Thank you for your interest and suggestion. Facilities Management is currently working with faculty from the Kremen School of Education and Human Development to plan and develop a community-education garden on campus. The primary focus will be to serve the needs in training teachers and developing curricular activities. They also have a vision to create a community-garden coalition where members of the campus and community could have assigned plots within the garden. Additionally, the group is exploring a partnership with the Student Cupboard. Stay tuned for further updates through Campus News, the e-newsletter for faculty and staff.
CONCERN: Hate speech is not free speech! If you think the stuff that those people "preaching" their religion on the Free Speech platform all day aren't terrorists then you need to open your eyes! Christianity is a religion that is supposed to encompass love, acceptance and helping your fellow person, but what these people are "preaching" is hate! They should not be allowed on campus. They should never be allowed on campus. Fresno State is an inclusive and safe campus but this is the opposite of that. President Castro, you claim that it's OK because it's free speech but you are wrong and if you wish to fix these issues happening (students feeling unsafe, students getting visibly upset) then you will ban those people and people like them from coming on campus. I feel unsafe, I feel upset, I am being filmed without my consent. And yet you find nothing wrong with this. (This concern was edited down to about 150 words to expedite the review of all submitted items and to render more user-friendly for readers.)
RESPONSE: Thank you for your feedback. As stated in our current Interim Time, Place and Manner policy, “Universities cannot restrict free expression solely because it causes offense or discomfort. At the same time, all members of the Fresno State community should recognize that freedom of expression includes respecting the dignity of others and acknowledging the right of others to express their opinions.” The policy also states: “Fresno State will maintain control of its grounds and facilities in a manner that will not censor communication based on its content. In exercising content neutrality, the university will not necessarily sanction or condone the messages that are being declared or the methods of communication used, but will recognize the right to express those messages.”
The April 9, 2019 email to the Campus Community noted that video and voice recordings are generally permitted in public spaces, such as campus outdoor areas, where there is not a reasonable expectation of privacy as defined by California law. However, recording someone after they have refused consent and expressed an intent to have a private discussion could constitute a violation of California law. If you are approached in a public space and do not want to be recorded, you are encouraged to refrain from engaging with the person(s) recording and to walk away from the situation.
CONCERN: I am a junior majoring in Business Administration, so I spend most of my time in the business building (which is beautiful and usually well kept). However, this semester I have a class in the Social Science building, and I've noticed that the entire building is unkempt and sort of older-looking (holes in the ceiling of my class). The restrooms in the second floor, especially, are usually quite dirty and they look out of date. It's very disheartening to see this because the rest of (what I've seen of) our campus is beautiful.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. Our custodial services team does proactively walk and check our restrooms on a regular basis. Please do let us know via twitter @fsfacilities or call 559.278.2373. The Social Sciences building is one of our older structures, and minor upgrades are planned as part of our priority deferred-maintenance projects scheduled for next academic year.
CONCERN: I find it cumbersome to annually report (using paper process) to my medical insurer the fact that I (and my dependents) still do not have additional health care insurance coverage other than that I receive by being a Fresno State employee. I understand why this process is necessary, from the primary insurance provider's point of view, but what is particularly odd is 1) that this is a paper process, and 2) that we (employees) have to pay postage to return the forms to the insurance company (Anthem), despite that it is in their financial best interest to conduct this annual survey. Thus, they should bear the cost of this process. It would be fantastic if HR could negotiate either to have Anthem provide postage-paid return envelopes or to administer this as an online process for future years.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. The annual questionnaire is required for Anthem Blue Cross PPO insurance carrier. Our Benefits team has reached out to the carrier to inquire about the possibility of providing a postage-paid return envelope. Please know that you also have the option to call Anthem Blue Cross PPO at 877.737.7776 to provide them with the questionnaire responses.
CONCERN: In all the years I've had classes in Room PB 103, I feel like there needs to be some
minor fixes that should be made:
1. There's a hole in the ceiling that has been left open for who knows how long? It's an eyesore and creates a bit of a concern - with the likelihood that other students may be exposed to asbestos or other unknown substances. Not sure if there will be repairs made any time soon?
2. I would like to suggest that Room PB 104 should be renamed to PB 103 because it doesn't exist. When you walk in to PB 104, it's still technically PB 103; it's just the same classroom that's just wider and has two doors.
RESPONSE: Thank you for letting us know about these rooms. Our Facilities Operations team has fixed the ceiling tile in PB 103, and the PB 104 room signage will be removed or replaced with correct numbering.
CONCERN: I would suggest two major revisions or oversights. Enforce a no cell phone policy for employees while driving Fresno State vehicles as I was almost hit this afternoon by a plant ops employee talking on their phone while driving a Fresno State vehicle. Second, do away with carpool parking passes regardless of who they're issued to. In most instances, only one individual exits the car possessing one of special passes, and it's frustrating for the rest of us that have to follow the rules because we're honest.
RESPONSE: Thank you for reporting this incident. All employees within the Division of Administration and Finance were reminded in April to comply with the California Vehicle Code when driving state vehicles.
The campus police department will issue citations when they see violations.
Employees utilizing a carpool-parking pass are eligible if two or more faculty/staff commute to work together. Employees are encouraged to update their carpool eligibility regularly, and our parking staff actively monitor and ensure user compliance of this program.
CONCERN: In the Ag Building, I believe Room 109 (newly remodeled), something needs to be done with the blower fans in the heater/ac in the classroom. They are extremely noisy, and it makes it very difficult for me to understand my professor, especially when I struggle to understand him when it is quiet (English is not his first language), and I am somewhat hearing impaired after a career as a heavy equipment/diesel mechanic. When the room is empty it is almost 50 decibels by itself.
RESPONSE: The HVAC unit was not replaced as part of the AG 109 renovation. We will evaluate the feasibility of replacing it this summer.
CONCERN: Is it possible to allow the department of Viticulture and Enology to serve student-produced beer during Vintage Days to help supplement the educational opportunities of the student body of this department? Kind of like a fundraiser? How about an organization with the proper non-profit verification such as the local San Joaquin Worthogs Homebrew Club? Does a given vendor already own Fresno State beer sales and distribution?
RESPONSE: Thank you for writing. Dining Services has exclusive rights for alcohol sales on campus. Alcohol served at the Vintage Days beer and wine garden is an event sponsored in coordination with Dining Services. Beer is secured from various vendors, and wine is secured from the Department of Viticulture and Enology's Fresno State Winery.
CONCERN: President Castro, if there was a safety issue, a threat against an employee
or department, would the campus tell us? Last month Technology Services had a department meeting and one person talked for
15 minutes on the campus hating Technology Services staff for Duo and other stuff.
He said that campus was out to get us and our staff and that we should check under
our cars before we turn them on. Is that true? I hope not.
I watched the news and see all the shootings and I worry. This month, there was a police incident in front of McKee Fisk. Today, in the free speech are the anti-abortionist and religious preachers are in people’s faces.
I don't think the free speech area is a safe place anymore. If there was a threat to TS or campus I think we should be told. If there’s not a threat, I don't think jokes about violence or bombs is funny at all.
RESPONSE: Safety for our campus community is a top priority. Any threat should be reported immediately to 559.278.8400 so that officers can quickly assess it. Should there be a serious and continuing threat to the campus, you will be notified through one or more of the campus emergency notification methods as outlined on the webpage for Public Safety. Please contact the Manager of Emergency Operations, Amy Luna, at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions about campus safety.
CONCERN: The transit buses were a nice addition, however I think it's time to re-evaluate them as they have problems. They are large, struggle turning corners, slow, cause traffic congestion, spew chocking black exhaust which stinks, and are very loud. I would like to offer a vision of what this transit system could look like: Imagine a SF-style trolley car on wheels where people are able to easily hop on and off without swiping their ID. These would be smaller than the current bus offering both seating and standing room, more maneuverable, electric (if practical), open to be boarded on all sides, anyone is allowed to ride (think general public using them during events), and could become an iconic image of Fresno State if designed right. I would propose opening up a design/paint scheme contest to all with the goal to have a trolley-car design scheme scream pride for Fresno State!
RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. Our Traffic and Parking team will consider this as we plan for future contracts for transit vehicles.
CONCERN: Please improve the lighting along the pathway from the Library to the Science II building. I walked there at night to get to my car and it was completely dark and felt unsafe. Thanks.
RESPONSE: Your safety is a priority for us. The Police Department has staff available to provide a safety escort. Please call 559.278.8400 to request a Safety Escort. For additional information, please contact Amy Luna, Campus Emergency Preparedness Manager, at email@example.com or 559.278.6875. We have invested significantly to add LED exterior lighting campus-wide, including parking lots and pedestrian walkways.
CONCERN: Are there plans to do something about the stray cat problem on campus? There are areas on campus where the smell is getting overwhelming and I fear it is becoming unhealthy. Can we also discourage employees from feeding the cats?
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. Please contact Facilities Services at 559.278.2373 to report the specific areas of campus where you have experienced the smell. Our team will address the problem by cleaning up the area.
CONCERN: Dr. Castro, thank you for your response to the author who shared concern about the Pregnancy Care Center mobile unit on our campus. It seems fair that equal time should be given to respond to misinformation that was contained in that item. In fact, the PCC mobile unit provides medical services that are not provided by the health center, thus expanding services to our students. All services provided by PCC are free, including, but not limited to pregnancy screening, ultrasound and counseling on resources available to women who may be pregnant or who are post-abortive. Although PCC does not refer women to abortion, they do offer counseling for other options/resources and will answer questions about abortion. I invite the author of the item, as well as anyone who is curious, to stop in and get answers to their questions about the services offered through PCC from the Pregnancy Care Center.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your feedback.
CONCERN: It's time for a multi-story parking area. There are too many cars spread around campus and that view needs to be replaced with more green areas.
RESPONSE: We have considered the construction of a parking garage, but given they are very costly to build and would result in a significant increase in student parking permit fees, this is not a viable option at this time.
CONCERN: The wording of many questions on the workplace quality survey are clearly written to get responses that the university administration seeks. A number of questions center on the topic of "does the university and/or leadership support "diversity?" The one thing missing is asking if we actually support the intrusion of race in nearly all university policies, practices, and decisions. There is good evidence from psychology & social science fields that the never-ending focus on race on university campuses serves to increase racial divides. Many of us are worn out by this constant focus on race and supposed "diversity" which is a joke since the campus is less diverse now than it was ten years ago when looking at the numbers of Black/African-American, Asian, Native American and other non-Hispanic students. Let's get back to focusing on students and staff as people and stop trying to label and sub-label everyone. The workplace survey does nothing to seek real answers in this area. It apparently only seeks to affirm the views of the university administration. (This concern was edited down to about 150 words to expedite the review of all submitted items and to render more user-friendly for readers.)
RESPONSE: The Workplace Quality Survey results help us better understand faculty and staff perceptions of their work environment. The results from the baseline 2017 survey identified our strengths as well as areas that required our attention. The majority of the questions utilized in the survey are standardized questions used by hundreds of universities across the country. The questions are designed to gauge opinions and needs of faculty and staff in several areas of workplace quality. The 2019 survey, coordinated by the Workplace Quality Taskforce, included some additional questions specific to Fresno State. Results of the survey will be shared with the campus community in the fall in open forums and online. We encourage you to attend one of the forums to share your specific concern. More information on the survey can be found here.
CONCERN: During a recent visit, I was shocked to see how bad the Ag Science building looked. There are large areas (several feet in some cases) where the paint has fallen off the building. The building is an embarrassment and needs to be repaired and painted. It is unfortunate that prospective students see the poor condition of the Jordan College's headquarters. The building should reflect the quality programs housed in it, which is definitely not the case.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. The Agriculture Sciences building is one of our oldest buildings. We are planning to comprehensively repaint the facility and have prioritized this project as one of our priority deferred-maintenance projects.
CONCERN: I would like to suggest the addition of a sidewalk in between lots P23 and P24 on San Ramon. Currently, there is a roughly 6-foot wide section of dirt off the East side of San Ramon with Pine trees in it, which is my suggested spot. Most students tend not to walk on the west sidewalk when coming from the student parking lot at Barstow. Instead, they end up walking through the parking lot and it creates a dangerous environment. I know that the sidewalk goes around but that's a further distance to travel and the student choose the parking lot to go towards North Gym, SS, library, etc. I've seen a few near misses over the year but recently I saw a student get hit (mildly, he was fine) and I think it is time for the pine trees that block our view to go and a little concrete in its place to create a path for students to walk to get them out of a parking lot. (This concern was edited down to about 150 words to expedite the review of all submitted items and to render more user-friendly for readers.)
RESPONSE:Thank you for your input. Our Facilities Team is currently reviewing a redesign of parking lot P23 with an emphasis on improving the pedestrian pathways and traffic interactions from Barstow Avenue to San Ramon Avenue and south along Campus Drive. Please note the repaving of Campus Drive is scheduled for this summer. Several alternatives for improving sidewalk paths are being considered. While the location suggested is being considered, the existing trees in this median provide much needed shade and contribute to the Campus Arboretum. In the meantime, our grounds team will inspect the trees and prune as needed to ensure visibility.
CONCERN: I recently took Fresno State's work quality survey, and I can't help but feel that the survey isn't getting the whole picture of what it's like to be a faculty member here. We're told our work is valued and that our quality of work life is important, but how can that be the case when as faculty members, we have few options on campus to eat lunch/decompress/socialize with our colleagues? I'm forced to eat my lunch at my desk, which guarantees that I'm always responding to emails, and in some cases seeing students if they walk in. We need some sort of faculty lounge to allow us to step away from our desks so that we can truly have a dedicated lunch hour. This may seem minor, but what are we really saying to faculty if their only option to eat lunch is at their desk where they work? The lack of faculty lounge/dining areas sends the message that we should work at all times without taking much-needed breaks that are vital for our health.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. Over the years, the concept of a faculty club/lounge has been discussed, and we used to have a University Restaurant that was not financially sustainable. We agree that it is important for our employees to have a space where they can eat lunch or take a break. We have a number of retail dining concepts in the University Student Union, University Center and the Satellite Student Union. There are also a number of dining options at Campus Pointe, and our campus shuttle picks up and drops off at that location, as well. We recognize that we have limited options currently, but our New Student Union will have additional campus retail dining options along with additional interior and exterior seating areas. During the cooler months, there are also a number of outdoor seating areas near and around many of our campus buildings.
CONCERN: I am a current student at Fresno State pursing my teaching credential within the Kremen School of Education and Human Development. One professor was one of the first teachers to teach me about "color blindness" in a 2015 Teaching Fellows Saturday Academy seminar. Because of him and his work, I am a better educator for all my future students. Sad to see him leave such a critical and fine establishment. Thank you for always standing by and supporting your staff. Appreciate the listening ears and conscious efforts for the greater good of the Central Valley.
RESPONSE: Thank you for your kind words. Our faculty are the backbone of the institution and help our students make life-changing discoveries. I wish you the very best in your studies and profession.
CONCERN: It seems many people are thinking to suggest to replace the Deans of one college at the earliest. The current Deans are not the most qualified professionals. There are outstanding and experienced administrators and professionals out there who could do Deans' job in Fresno State best. The current Deans are simply serving as the placeholders or working as a rubber stamp and constantly creating serious animosity among faculty, staff, other administrators and even with the students. The people in the entire Dean's cabinet (means to say the Department Chairs) are also less qualified (of course they have PhDs).
RESPONSE: Our deans and chairs are all well qualified for their positions both by training and experience. They have been appointed based on demonstrated professional excellence in their disciplines; service to the department, college and University; and leadership ability. For the most part, they provide visionary leadership and reduce friction as they move their departments/colleges/schools forward in support of the University’s Strategic Plan. If you have specific examples where this is not occurring, please bring them to the attention of the provost.
CONCERN: Are there plans to widen Barstow to four lanes? Traffic is out of control. I know the price tag would be large but consider small less expensive options year by year, for example: Year one, widen Barstow west-bound to two lanes in front of O'Neill Park and the horse unit. Land is available sitting empty. Year two, add an additional east-bound lane between Chestnut and Willow. Year three, add an additional west-bound lane between Willow and Chestnut. Year four, add an additional roundabout at Maple/Barstow. Year five, add an additional roundabout at Woodrow/Barstow. Etc.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. As part of the Barstow Avenue summer 2019 re-paving project, we will be implementing traffic-calming and pedestrian-safety improvements between Cedar and Maple Avenues. Due to the lack of right-of-way, there are currently no plans to widen Barstow Avenue between Maple and Willow Avenues or the provision of additional roundabouts.
CONCERN: I am in doctoral program here and I just found out from someone I know who is finishing an online doctoral program at Fresno State (with another Cal State) that they don't charge their students doc tuition ($6,000 or more) for one of their summers. Instead they make it look like the class was taken in the fall so they don't have to pay for the class in the summer when they take it. Not only that, they have the same Fresno State (social work) faculty as we do who taught the same course (org theory). So they get to spread out their classes more without having to pay for it -- which we don't get to do. It's hard work finishing a doctoral degree while working full-time - we don't think it is fair that some programs get to spread it out more without paying more.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing this concern. Adjustments have been made to ensure equity across the programs with respect to the number of semesters in each program. Effective Fall 2019, students in both cohorts (CODEL and DPELFS) will begin their courses in the fall semester. Students in each program will pay the same for 8 semesters of tuition and fees. Both programs provide a high-quality doctoral experience while boasting one of the lowest overall costs for EdD programs in the United States.
CONCERN: As a faculty member, I am seriously concerned about how exams are run at Fresno State. Exams are commonly conducted in classrooms. Conducting exams in this manner is incredibly problematic, especially for larger classes where seats are beside each other and it is not possible to move between students' seats. Further, I believe many faculty do not check students' IDs as part of their exam administration. I believe all exams should be run through the Testing Center to ensure students are who they say they are and testing experiences are similar for students in all scenarios. Has the university any longer term plans to expand the Testing Center and realize these goals? Other universities I have worked at administer their exams in larger halls to ensure all students can be sufficiently monitored when taking exams and that adequate protocols are strictly and consistently followed.
RESPONSE: The Testing Center is available for faculty who have very large classes to address the concerns you raise. If you have difficulties scheduling exams, please contact Vice Provost Dennis Nef at 559.278.2636 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
CONCERN: A concern submitted to the President’s Feedback page about an employee has been referred to the appropriate administrators.
CONCERN: Recently, ROTC has been training in the park over in our ag area in the late afternoons (it may have been happening longer, but I've only noticed it this semester.) They seem to frequently train with military rifles, hopefully facsimiles, but that's not apparent as we drive by. The training time often corresponds with heavy traffic on Barstow, including stopped traffic adjacent to the park. A number of times I have been waiting in traffic while students in uniforms with rifles lay on the ground with the guns pointed at the line of cars. It is uncomfortable and unnerving to be in that situation. Growing up in a rural family of hunters, I learned to never point a gun at anyone, so having multiple guns (even models) focused on my car during my drive home is upsetting. Is there somewhere else they could train?
RESPONSE: The Fresno State Army ROTC is committed to providing quality education and developing future leaders at Fresno State and maintaining a positive relationship with the University and community. The ROTC currently coordinates all labs with the Fresno State Police Department and never trains with actual weapons on campus. To address your concern, the realistic rubber facsimiles/props the ROTC uses will be painted neon-orange, and the program will display large signs during all labs to reinforce this message.
CONCERN: The hiring practices and policies at Fresno State aren't being used right especially in my department, Tech Services. For the past several years Tech Services has pre-selected hires. Please investigate Tech Services and review the hiring policies used. This isn't fair or right.
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. All departments are required to comply with campus recruitment procedures as documented on our Human Resources website. Also, each search committee includes a trained EEOD (Equal Employment Opportunity Designee) to ensure fair hiring practices. If you would like to provide additional details regarding specific recruitments that you believe have not followed University procedures, please contact Associate Vice President for Human Resources, Marylou Mendoza-Miller at 559.278.2032 directly to discuss your concerns.
CONCERN: Take away the two-step verification process. This is ridiculous for staff and faculty. Are you going to pay for my phone bill if I select to call for the verification? Will you pay for my space that I need to get on my phone now that I have to download another app on my phone?
RESPONSE: Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback. Fresno State and the California State University system are continually looking for ways to better support students and employees, and information security and privacy are currently topics of concern at the forefront of national headlines. The California Information Practices Act and the 2016 California Data Breach Report provide strong incentive and guidance toward integrating multi-factor authentication (e.g. DUO @ Fresno State) for online accounts that contain sensitive personal information, to reduce risk to the CSU and our students, faculty and staff. Regarding your concern about the use of your personal cell phone, our Technology Services team offers a number of options for the second form of authentication, including a small “token” keychain device that works without a cellular phone or internet connection and can be used anywhere in the world. You may inquire about options by calling 559.278.5000, emailing email@example.com, or visiting McKee Fisk Room 137 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. during non-holiday weekdays.
I also invite you to discuss these questions, or any others, with our campus Information Security Officer Dr. Rafael Villegas at firstname.lastname@example.org, or our campus Chief Information Officer Orlando Leon at email@example.com.
CONCERN: Has any thought been given to allowing staff members use the tech lending services in the library, with regard to tablets? By no means do I want them taken away from students and faculty who truly need them, but to explore a short-term use by staff. A suggestion would be a three-day period (prep the day before, use for the day of, and the day after to return). For some areas, the use of a tablet, in lieu of a computer, may make a huge difference, especially for those areas who are unable to purchase it themselves, or do not have a personal device. This comes from a case where the use of a tablet was going to be astronomically easier, but did not have the access to a newer model. Either way, your consideration is appreciated!
RESPONSE: Thank you for your suggestion. The Library Tech Lending service supports students and faculty. We will consider the possibility of a technology-lending service for staff, as well.
CONCERN: I wanted to discuss my fear that Fresno State will get left behind in the technological field when it comes to devices and services on campus. When my first semester began I was so excited to have a DISCOVERe iPad class.I’m sad to say that what I thought was a cutting-edge university would be slowed to a snail’s pace as the iPad classes have not improved in years, Apple Pay is still hit or miss when paying for food, I put my student ID card on my iPhone, I can’t print from my own laptop or iPad, and even simple stuff like wireless charging pads in the tables around the library and USU are nowhere to be seen.Please don’t let the iPad classroom die, and please embrace technology on campus again, like you did my first semester. I want to see Fresno State be a leader in technology, not a follower. (This concern was edited down to about 150 words to expedite the review of all submitted items and to render more user-friendly for readers.)
RESPONSE: Thank you for taking the time to write. I appreciate your concern, and I am encouraged that you are passionate about how technology can positively influence Fresno State and our students. Please be assured that Chief Information Officer Orlando Leon and his team are considering constantly how to implement and use technology appropriately to support teaching, learning, research, operations and the student experience at Fresno State. CIO Leon and the campus technology innovation team are testing various technologies, such as augmented reality, virtual reality, mixed/extended reality, artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, blockchain, Google workflows, maker and innovation spaces, and other cutting-edge technology to enhance various experiences on campus.
It sounds like you have some fascinating ideas. I encourage you to reach out to the Fresno State Technology Innovation team with your ideas. The team has a large group of students working on a variety of technology innovation initiatives.
CONCERN: Has any administrator walked on the road between Keats and the amphitheater lately? It has lots of cracks and potholes and is extremely dangerous. When it rains, it’s even worse. I’m sure it’s expensive to fix, but it’s a huge liability that can’t be ignored.
RESPONSE: Providing a safe environment for our campus community is always a top priority. This year, we will continue to make improvements to sidewalks and roads. The potholes on the road referred to in your concern were repaired in early February. This roadway will also be addressed as part of the site work for the New Student Union.
CONCERN: Can we do something with the block wall along Cedar and Bulldog Way? That wall is blank and could be used for campus branding using vinyl wraps to keep content fresh and up to date or if we find a donor, that would be a great place for an electronic bulletin board with announcements and advertisements. But it's wasted just being a blank block wall.
RESPONSE: Thank you for your idea. We have recently upgraded the lighting and enclosed
the inset areas for pedestrian safety at night. We will evaluate options and opportunities for
use of this wall.
CONCERN: I am very concerned about how Tech Services hires people. We are told that personality and fit are important. That doesn't sound right to many of us in the department because it doesn't seem fair or a good way to pick people for positions. It makes it sound like the managers have to like the applicant instead of by degree or experience. I just got my degree because I was told I needed one to move up, but then my department said the position did not require a degree after all. That is not fair. Lots of us feel the change was to allow a particular person to apply because our department has a history of it by calling it a temporary. This isn't the first time either. It is messing up morale. I hope you take the time to look into the hiring and job posting for our department. (This concern was edited down to about 150 words to expedite the review of all submitted items and to render more user-friendly for readers.)
RESPONSE: Thank you for sharing your concern. All departments are required to comply with campus recruitment procedures as documented on our Human Resources website. Selection criteria that the search committees and hiring managers use to evaluate candidates includes applicable educational background and experience as well as knowledge, skills and abilities as referenced in the position description / job announcement. If you would like to provide specific information in regards to a recent recruitment, please contact Associate Vice President for Human Resources Marylou Mendoza-Miller at 559.278.2032 directly to discuss your concerns.
CONCERN: Per the Jan. 2019 feedback comment regarding use of leaf blowers on campus, since we are devoting much attention to health of our community, perhaps we should reconsider a ban of use on our campus. Many communities in California have (or are about to) implemented such ordinances to reduce noise, dust, and greenhouse gas emissions from such gasoline powered equipment.We appreciate clean walkways, but a few leaves, grass blades etc. are not a significant issue. Perhaps resume the effort to use electric-powered blowers where absolutely necessary?Since we now have a VP for Water and "Sustainability" it might be good to be a role model for such?
RESPONSE: Facilities Services is evaluating some of the new generation electric/battery operated grounds-maintenance equipment. Much of the previous equipment was not robust enough to handle the demands of the daily operations on campus. We agree that we need to do our part to reduce noise and air pollution. In the meantime, we have adjusted our work flow to be more efficient at maintaining the building grounds and sidewalks to reduce the duration of these impacts to our campus community.