President's Blog

The poet John Donne

My own “legacy of poetry” and its enduring significance

With SJSU’s week-long Legacy of Poetry 2021 celebration kicking off soon, I recently began to reflect on my own deep affection for poetry and its relevance in today’s world.

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Emancipatory learning approach helping students "reap the full benefit of an empowering education"

March 23, 2021

Recently I had the opportunity to offer welcome remarks at the kickoff event for our Lurie College of Education's new Emancipatory Education Speaker Series, which focuses on a "post-COVID-19 education system." What an important and timely initiative!

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Campus master plan could reshape the physical spaces at SJSU for years to come

March 8, 2021

Before the pandemic hit early last year and turned all of our lives topsy-turvy, some readers might recall that I had been taking a deep dive into our Transformation 2030 strategic plan. In particular, I had written blog posts about four of the five goals laid out in Transformation 2030. I am happy now to address Goal #5, the final goal from Transformation 2030 —“Renew and Rebuild”—and, in particular, a cornerstone of that goal: the campus master planning process that now is in its early stages.

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Institutional values help elevate SJSU’s “Most Transformative” ranking

February 23, 2021

Last August, we were delighted to learn that Money magazine had ranked San José State University the “Most Transformative University” in the nation. It is a distinction that makes us all very proud, of course. But what does it truly mean for SJSU to be the “most transformative” university?

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Welcome to Spring 2021 Semester!

January 27, 2021

Welcome to spring semester—and to a long-awaited 2021. I hope you had a restful and enjoyable holiday season. Despite the realities of the ongoing public health and economic crisis as well as the recent stresses on our democracy that we all witnessed in recent weeks, we press on with our educational mission. It is gratifying, in fact, to know that so many students are continuing—or just beginning—their higher education journeys here at San José State.

President Papazian Fall 2020 Holiday

Celebrating SJSU's Fall 2020 Graduates While Looking Ahead To The Holidays

December 17, 2020

As we near the end of a difficult 2020, we have two end-of-year occasions—fall graduation and our extended holiday break—to which we can look forward. Each offers us a welcome respite from the challenges we have faced these past nine months.

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Gratitude and best wishes for a safe, restful and healthy long weekend

November 23, 2020

In the midst of so many challenges—including the new COVID-19 restrictions announced by the State of California last week—we now have an opportunity to refresh and recharge over the upcoming holiday break. For many of us, the long weekend is a time for reflection, connection and for giving thanks for what we have.

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An Historic Election Draws to a Close

November 7, 2020

Today, November 7, 2020, is an historic day for the United States and for the democratic principles we hold dear. In addition to electing the nation's 46th president, Joseph R. Biden, Jr., we will now have - for the very first time - a woman holding the second highest office in the land. Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, is, of course, a Californian and Bay Area native, and her Jamaican and Asian Indian ancestry symbolizes the rich diversity and possibilities of our nation.

SJSU student voters

Post-election reflections

November 4, 2020

The current election cycle, which has not yet quite concluded as of this writing, has generated a mixed array of emotions for many of us. With more than 100 million votes cast even before Nov. 3, the overall turnout for these elections will likely equal or surpass any others in our nation's history. Even more impressive, perhaps, is the number of first-time and young voters who cast a vote or were active at the local level. Adjusting so well in the midst of a global pandemic demonstrates the power of our democracy.

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"What the Eyes Don't See" a compelling, though sobering, campus reading selection for our times.

October 15, 2020

It was a real treat for me to join a recent Zoom webinar to discuss this semester’s campus reading program selection, What the Eyes Don’t See, by Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha. Dr. Mona is a pediatrician, public health advocate and immigrant who practices in Flint, Michigan. Her book brilliantly shines a spotlight on the water crisis there, revealing how children were exposed to dangerous levels of lead.