President Whitmore's First 100 Days

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Supporting Student Success

Thursday, October 2, 2008

President Whitmore with South Campus Grounds Manager Raul Bueno, Gardener Joaquin Villarreal, Groundsworker Carlos Moreno, Heavy Equipment Operator Juan Alcaraz
The South Campus grounds crew with President Whitmore after they taught him to trim the turf in Spartan Stadium. President, South Campus Grounds Manager Raul Bueno, Gardener Joaquin Villarreal, Groundsworker Carlos Moreno, Heavy Equipment Operator Juan Alcaraz. Photo: Robert Bain, SJSU Photographic Services.

While I must admit that I was skeptical about how useful creating a blog about my early days as president of San José State would be, I thought it would be worth experimenting with as a tool for communicating with the many constituents of this vast university. From my vantage point, the blog was very useful. Here are some things that I learned and tried to communicate:

I met dozens of employees who take enormous pride in their work. From the coffee counter, to the mail delivery route, to the library archives, to the police patrol, to the football stadium grounds keepers, SJSU's people strive for excellence. These employees take extra care to provide the best service possible because they love the university and take great pride in knowing that they make a difference in the lives of our students every day.

I found that the blog was a way to communicate the complexity and diversity of the university. San José State has all the elements of a small city of some 38,000 students and employees. We employ workers from every profession and craft: lawyers, plumbers, mechanics, accountants, law officers, librarians, scholars, teachers, grounds keepers, cooks, computer technicians, counselors, graphic designers and many more. All of these people labor day in and day out to create an environment that helps support each student's success, both inside and outside the classroom. I learned that highly dedicated and skilled employees, dedicated to excellence, proud of their association with a great university, is what made SJSU the kind of university it is today. We have a very bright future, indeed.

Finally, I hope the blog helped the university community understand the many roles of a university president, the great diversity of constituents that make up a thriving university, and a bit about me and my family. We are proud to be Spartans and look forward to our first Homecoming and to the remainder of this exciting year.

- President Jon Whitmore

President Whitmore with South Campus Grounds Manager Raul Bueno, Gardener Joaquin Villarreal, Groundsworker Carlos Moreno, Heavy Equipment Operator Juan Alcaraz
Heavy Equipment Operator Juan Alcaraz and South Campus Grounds Manager Raul Bueno show President Whitmore the machines they use to maintain SJSU's playing fields. Photo: Robert Bain, SJSU Photographic Services.

Last Blog Entry, Spartans!

Thank you for reading the president's blog, which had more than 14,000 page views. This project was produced by the Office of the President, Division of University Advancement and Department of Academic Technology. We would like to extend a special thanks to Presidential Aide Zaynna Fakhreddine, University Photographer Robert Bain and Web Application Developer Harish Chakravarthy. Web Content Editor Jody Ulate and Media Relations Director Pat Lopes Harris coordinated and posted material. Please send us your feedback.