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Fall Classes Begin

New Degree Programs and More Await Students

August 25, 2009

By Paula Selleck

Students starting fall semester classes this week at Cal State Fullerton will find two new degree programs added to the range of learning opportunities that can position future graduates for professional success.

The new offerings include a master of biotechnology and bachelor of science in athletic training for an overall total of 105 degree programs offered by the university.

In addition, students will be able to target their courses of study in these new directions:
• minor in environmental biology
• minor in cell and molecular biology
• minor in Islamic studies
• concentration in nurse educator
• concentration in risk management and insurance (B.A and M.B.A. programs)
• joint emphasis in accounting and information systems
• certificate in writing and teaching

“We are not about to let the reductions in state funding hamper our resolve to continue giving students a quality education in traditional, as well as emerging fields,” said CSUF President Milton A. Gordon. “We must continue looking ahead to the future that our students will be molding with the skills and knowledge we can offer them.”

Gordon will greet campus and community members at the university's annual "Concert Under the Stars" Sept. 11 and deliver his 20th CSUF Convocation address Sept. 15.

Despite statewide budget reductions limiting the number of new students admitted to the university, “the faculty remain committed to providing a high-quality education and broadening the curriculum to meet the needs of students,” said Ephraim Smith, vice president for academic affairs. “We’re drawing on existing courses, as well as introducing new ones to offer these focused programs.”

Meanwhile, outside funding from grants, foundations and donors enables the university to pursue research and curriculum-development efforts that wouldn’t be possible otherwise. The master of biotechnology, a professional science master's degree, is one such example. Foundation funding fueled the development of this new degree program, which incorporates business practices, as well as science in the curriculum.

Expanded research efforts also are under way in the arenas of math and science education, health and wellness — all aided by Congressional appropriations.

“Opportunities for federal support of university projects are expanding as the campus pursues appropriate federal investment from our members of Congress,” said Owen Holmes, associate vice president for public affairs and government relations. “Faculty members are aggressively pursuing a variety of opportunities to conduct research in areas that further our academic mission, benefit the region and contribute to its growth.”

Joining the faculty this fall are more than 40 newcomers, who will be fanning out across the university's eight colleges and the Pollak Library.

Faculty members will be adjusting their teaching plans to accommodate mandated furloughs that will curtail university operations on some days and close the campus on others during the 2009-10 academic year. This is a direct result of massive budget cuts to the California State University system. The 23-campus CSU is receiving almost $600 million less from the state for the 2009-10 school year than it received a decade ago, even though the CSU is educating approximately 100,000 more students. In July, CSU trustees raised student fees as part of of an overall budget action plan.

The university’s budget information page includes a section for students on frequently asked questions, a furlough calendar and related information for campus and community members.

Media Contacts:
Paula Selleck, Public Affairs, 657-278-4856 or
Christopher Bugbee, Public Affairs, 657-278-8487 or


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