Message to Faculty and Staff on Systemwide Impaction

December 5, 2008

As many of you know, California State University Chancellor Charles B. Reed has declared systemwide impaction. As a result, the CSU will restrict enrollment for the first time in history. Why is this move necessary? For several years, the CSU has provided access to more students while funding and resources from the state have remained static, and in some years, declined.

Our campus is in its second academic year of enrollment exceeding our budgeted allocations from the CSU. Providing instruction, advising and other services for more students while receiving less funding reduces the quality of the academic experience. As a result, I have declared our campus impacted, and decided that we must reduce enrollment.

Declaring impaction is a very difficult decision. Accessibility is the CSU's historic mission, and it is with deep regret that we ask applicants to consider alternatives to San Jose State. My hope and expectation is that this is a temporary situation.

As we set out to reduce enrollment, we will utilize strategies that will be new and complex to many of us. I need your help to consistently communicate the information below to applicants, students and their families. Please also remind applicants and students to monitor their MySJSU accounts for updates on their individual situations.

Because impaction is new to our campus, our enrollment management team is still finalizing procedural details. Soon I will appoint an enrollment advisory group, with members from the campus and the community, to advise us on enrollment matters, both now and in future years. We will keep you fully informed as we work through the impaction process. Meanwhile, if you have questions, please contact the individuals listed at the end of this message.


The domestic undergraduate application deadline for students enrolling in fall 2009 was November 30, 2008. This included applications from first-time freshmen and upper-division transfers. International applications are due April 1, 2009, and graduate applications are due on various dates.

Under the impaction guidelines, we will admit all fully eligible applicants, both freshmen and transfers, from our local area, which is Santa Clara County. California residents applying from outside the local area may be admitted on a space-available basis using supplemental admission criteria.

For fall 2009, no lower-division transfers or second-baccalaureate applicants, regardless of major, can be admitted, per directives from the chancellor's office. Applicants were advised of this possibility in early November and letters are being sent to them confirming this decision.

Posted deadlines for applicants and admitted students will be strictly enforced. Failure to comply will result in rescinding the application or admission.

Please keep in mind that students unable to attend SJSU have a number of alternatives. Many of our sister campuses, including CSU East Bay and CSU Monterey Bay, are still accepting applications from first-time freshmen and upper-division transfer students.

The provost, in consultation with the deans, will determine how impaction will affect graduate admissions. Our enrollment management team will provide more information on this topic when details are finalized.

Get more information on how impaction will affect applicants.

Continuing Students

CSU impaction guidelines give continuing students in good standing priority over incoming students. However, continuing students will be affected by our need to reduce enrollment. We will encourage students to complete their degrees in a timely manner. We will also closely monitor students on academic probation. More information will be forthcoming.

If You Have Questions

If you have questions or suggestions, please contact any of the following individuals:

  • Colleen Brown, Interim Associate Vice President for Enrollment and Academic Services
  • Robert Cooper, Associate Vice President for Undergraduate Studies
  • Pamela Stacks, Associate Vice President for Graduate Studies and Research
  • Veril Phillips, Vice President for Student Affairs
  • William Nance, Vice Provost for Academic Budgets and Planning

President Jon Whitmore