Santa Clara University

FYI - Faculty and Staff Newsletter

fyi - News for the Campus Community

fyi is the official faculty-staff newsletter for the Santa Clara University community. It is designed to keep faculty and staff informed about campus news and information. It is compiled, written and published by the Office of Marketing and Communications.

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  •  Grand Reunion

    More than 2,000 Santa Clara University graduates returned to campus for Grand Reunion from Oct. 15 to Oct. 18. They participated in various activities to remember their years as young students, reconnect with their old classmates, and renew their commitment to their fellow Broncos and the University.

    Watch a slide show of Grand Reunion events.

  •  A Tribute to All Immigrants in the U.S.

    The Governor’s Office of the State of Jalisco, Mexico, honored Francisco Jiménez, the Fay Boyle Professor of Modern Languages and Literatures on Oct. 13. Government officials formally presented the new Jalisco government publication of Jiménez’s first two autobiographical novels in a single volume.

    “On this momentous occasion, I warmly welcome the officials from the Governor’s Office of the State of Jalisco, Mexico, as they honor Francisco Jiménez,” said Santa Clara University President Michael Engh, S.J. “I am grateful for the role that Professor Jiménez has played on our campus, not only as an internationally acclaimed author, but as a gifted teacher and scholar as well.”

    The government decided to publish the special edition “not only because of the literary value of the book, but because of the living testimony that it is for all the people,” according to the Minister of Culture of Jalisco, Jesús Alejandro Cravioto Lebrija, who wrote a preface to the new edition and is scheduled to be at the presentation. The publication, entitled Cajas de Cartón y Senderos Fronterizos, contains a special introduction by Emilio González Márquez, Governor of Jalisco, in which he lauds Jiménez’s struggles, hard work, and continuing success as an inspirational tale of hope for people on both sides of the border. Read more.

  •  Two Universities Form a Partnership for New Opportunities

    A newly signed agreement between Santa Clara University and a major Chinese university will open the door to new opportunities for students and faculty. On Aug. 31, Santa Clara President Michael Engh, S.J., signed a memorandum of understanding with Shanghai Jiao Tong University, which has 38,000 students and is home to one of China’s top-ranked engineering schools. One of its best-known alumni is former Chinese President Jiang Zemin.

    “When you’re in engineering, it is clear that there is a lot of action in two places outside of the U.S.: China and India,” said Godfrey Mungal, dean of Santa Clara’s School of Engineering.

    The seeds for the collaboration were sown in 2008, when a Santa Clara delegation visited Shanghai Jiao Tong University. Now that the arrangement has been made formal, the universities are busy working out the details.

    Santa Clara has proposed several possibilities. One is a faculty exchange. Another is a joint advising program for Ph.D. students, which would allow some doctoral candidates to study at both institutions. Finally, they hope to work out a student exchange, so both undergraduates and graduate students can study at the partner institution.

    “Signing the memorandum is the easy part,” Mungal said. “Finding out what works for both sides, that’s the more difficult part but also the more rewarding part.”

    Both schools have something to gain from the arrangement, in addition to learning about another culture.

    “They have exceptional research in a number of areas,” said Aleksandar I. Zecevic, professor of electrical engineering and associate dean for graduate studies at Santa Clara.

    Santa Clara can offer the Chinese faculty and students exposure to broad interdisciplinary courses covering topics such as engineering and ethics; the legal, social, and policy implications of engineering; and gender issues in engineering. Its location in Silicon Valley is also attractive, since many of its adjunct instructors work for Silicon Valley companies.

    “If there’s a hot topic out there, within six months we have a course in it,” Zecevic said.

    The collaboration will begin with the School of Engineering but may expand later to include other campus departments and schools.

  •  Weekend MBA Programs Eliminate Water Bottles

    Alex Paulin, director of Weekend and International MBA Programs, noticed garbage cans filled to the brim with plastic water bottles after weekend classes. The Executive and Weekend Accelerated MBA programs are all inclusive, meaning students receive meals and snacks during class, in addition to coffee and beverages (including bottled water). Many program participants were taking two or more water bottles at a time—drinking one with their meal and then saving the remaining for later. Not only was Paulin seeing the waste build up, but purchasing bottled water was becoming more and more expensive.

    Through collaboration with Dining Services by Bon Appétit, Paulin came up with a cost-effective and environmentally-friendly solution. He ordered reusable, red stainless steel water bottles, emblazoned with the SCU logo. When students begin the Executive or Weekend Accelerated MBA programs, they receive a backpack and other SCU gear. The water bottle was simply included with these items, so all new students received one. They were told that plastic water bottles would no longer be provided and instead encouraged to bring the stainless steel bottle with them to refill at refreshment stations. Paper cups are provided in case someone forgets their bottle, but Paulin said that rarely happens. Read more.

  •  The Center for Science, Technology, and Society Launches Competition for Faculty and Students

    The Center for Science, Technology, and Society (CSTS) is launching a grant program for both faculty and students with awards up to $5,000 for faculty, up to $2,000 for individual student investigators, and up to $3,000 for student teams. The deadline for proposal submissions is Friday, Oct. 30.

    CSTS is inaugurating a competition for funding to support projects that are commensurate with its mission, “to understand and enable the innovative application of science and technology for global human benefit.”

    Examples of the areas of interest to the center include, but are not restricted to:

    • Investigation of the interfaces between science, technology, and society;
    • Research, development, or application of science and technology for social benefit with particular interest in sustainable, clean technologies.

    Jack Gilbert, professor and chair of the chemistry and biochemistry departments at SCU, as well as director of research initiatives at the center, and Craig Stephens, associate professor of biology and director of education at the center, established the grant program.

    Applicants should submit their applications to Erin Berkenmeier by 5 p.m. Friday, Oct. 30. Applications must be submitted in PDF format. Click here for more information and to download the application form.

  •  Educating the Whole Person on a Whole Level at Santa Clara University

    Santa Clara University takes its mission statement seriously when it comes to educating the whole person. Not only do competence, conscience, and compassion apply to its students, but the three Cs also apply to faculty and staff. That’s why the university’s human resources department offers 70 to 80 professional and personal workshops to the campus community throughout the year.

    The classes range from a variety of topics that address stress, communication, problem-solving skills, health, and self-improvement. You can learn how to manage people effectively or write the best business correspondence that gets the job done. Need help on interviewing for a job? No problem. Or how about putting the “happy” back in the holidays? There’s a class for that, too. And the best part – they’re free.

    Charlie Ambelang is the assistant director of HR for organizational learning and leadership development. He and Cheryl Johnson, a trainer for HR professional development programs, identify the classes that are needed on campus and sometimes even teach the workshops themselves.

    “We’re more than happy to have anyone from the university attend,” says Ambelang. “You can be in a managerial role and need some guidance or you can be a new employee, wanting to meet people. All faculty and staff are invited to our workshops.”

    Ambelang also encourages anyone facing issues at work or at home to sign up for the workshops. But he points out that just attending a class isn’t enough.

    “It’s not of any value to you until you practice your new skills. We really reinforce the fact that you have to apply the skills or you’re not going to get any benefit out of it,” he says.

    Click here for a list of classes offered this fall.

  •  President's Speaker Series - Globalization: Boon or Bane for Humanity?

    Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano ’79 will kick off the fourth annual President’s Speakers Series and the Grand Reunion on Thursday, Oct. 15.

    In her lecture, “Homeland Security in a Networked Age,” Napolitano will address the following questions: What is the role for the Department of Homeland Security in our networked, 21st century world? What kinds of threats should our country be prepared for? How can ordinary citizens become more involved in our national preparedness efforts?

    As secretary, Napolitano manages a department with 225,000 employees and a $55 billion budget whose mandate is clear: to keep America safe. In the early months of her tenure, she has traveled to Pakistan, Mexico, Ontario, and Ireland to drive security efforts in shipping, transportation, cyberspace, and border security.

    “Security cannot be the role of the Department of Homeland Security alone. Everybody has a role,” she says. “We cannot do it by ourselves.”

    The lecture begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Mayer Theatre. General admission tickets are $25 each; tickets for faculty, staff, and members of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute are $20 each; and SCU student tickets are free, but student seats are limited.

    For more information or to order tickets, visit the President’s Speaker Series Web site.

  •  Grand Reunion for More Than 1,000 SCU Alumni

    More than 1,000 Santa Clara University alumni from all over the country are expected to flock to the Silicon Valley campus in two weeks, taking part in Santa Clara University’s Grand Reunion weekend.

    In all, more than 1,500 alumni, family, and friends are expected to attend the three-day event, being held on the SCU campus from October 15 to 18, 2009. While the university has held annual reunions since its founding in 1851, this is only the fourth time in recent history the university has tried to gather 10 classes at once for the celebration. 

    Attendees are invited to participate in back-to-back courses, events, or parties over the span of the weekend. Already proving to be popular are a career-oriented workshop on How to Navigate a Difficult Job Market; Prof. Fred Parrella’s course Will Love and Marriage Survive in a Postmodern World; various class parties, and a 5K Bronco run/walk. There will also be a homecoming picnic; campus, residence hall, and library tours; a golf tournament; sporting events; networking opportunities; and more. Read more.

    Click here for more information on the Grand Reunion.

  •  New Undergraduate Students by the Numbers

    The students are here, their suitcases unpacked, and they’re well underway with their studies. This year, some 1,100 freshmen and 245 transfer students joined Santa Clara University.

    Amid a tumultuous year for college enrollments across the country, a record number of freshman students applied to Santa Clara University again this past year: 10,226, or nearly 100 more applicants than the year before.

    Given the global economic challenges, SCU also experienced an 11 percent increase in prospective students filing for financial aid. The university was able to award $10.5 million in SCU funded scholarships and grants to 69 percent of the freshmen students enrolling this fall. This SCU aid, combined with other federal, state, gifts, student loans, and work opportunities, totaled just over $19.4 million, making it possible to provide financial assistance to 80 percent of the class of 2013.

    Snapshot of the Class of 2013
    Male 48.1%
    Female 51.9%

    Asian/Pacific Islander 16.1%
    Black 4.6%
    Caucasian 38.1%
    Hispanic 15.2%
    Multiethnic 8.8%
    Native American 0.3%
    Unknown 17.0%

    Where’s home?
    California 57.0%
    Out-of-state 40.5%
    International 1.9%

    Watch a slideshow of Welcome Weekend.

  •  Ceremonial Groundbreaking for the Paul L. Locatelli, S.J., Student Activity Center

    Santa Clara University broke ground on a new building that will be the hub for student groups and activities on Sept. 28 in Kerr Alumni Park, located between the Leavey Center and Buckshaw Stadium.

    The new building will be called the Paul L. Locatelli, S.J., Student Activity Center to honor Chancellor Locatelli, S.J., the former president of SCU (1988-2008) who made it a goal to establish a place for students to gather.

    Last year, in a gesture to honor the departing president, Mary Mathews-Stevens ’84 and husband, Mark, a partner in the Silicon Valley venture capital firm Sequoia Capital, donated $7 million for the future Paul L. Locatelli, S.J., Student Activity Center.

    A longtime goal of Locatelli, the new student center was “a perfect project to support given my deep involvement with student government, sports, and other student activities while I was an undergraduate at SCU,” said Mary Mathews-Stevens. She has served on SCU’s Board of Fellows since 2001.

    The gift comes at a time when the growing global economic crisis is beginning to affect U.S. colleges and universities. Acknowledging that, Mark Stevens said, “We see our donation as a long-term investment in the quality of student life at Santa Clara.”

    The plan for the center includes a two-story student building and a single-story athletic building, which will house the locker rooms for Santa Clara’s soccer teams. There will be office spaces for the Center for Student Leadership, Santa Clara Community Action Program, Associated Students, and the Activities Programming Board.

    Construction will be complete in June of 2010.

  •  Ethnic Studies: 40 Years and Counting

    The 2009-10 academic year marks a watershed moment for the ethnic studies program at Santa Clara University—its 40th Anniversary! Through the incredible passion and vision of past students, faculty, administrators, and staff at Santa Clara University amidst the student movements of the late 1960s, so began the birth of Ethnic Studies programs across the nation. During the time, student activities challenged existing racial formalisms in higher education and the campus was home to a microcosm of the civil rights, women’s rights, and anti-war movements of the time. Read more.

    Click here for a list of events celebrating the 40th anniversary of Santa Clara University’s ethnic studies program.

  •  Get Your Seasonal Flu Shot

    If you still need to get your flu shots, there will be a second seasonal flu vaccine clinic in Parlor B of the Benson Center on Tuesday, Oct. 13 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The cost is $25, and you can pay with cash, check, or if you’re a student, you can charge it to your account. Talk with your health care provider about whether you should be vaccinated for seasonal flu.

    If you are at a higher risk for flu complications from 2009 H1N1 flu, you should consider getting the H1N1 vaccine from your medical provider when it becomes available. For more detailed information about priority groups for vaccination, visit the CDC Web site

    At this point in time, Cowell Student Health Center will not be providing H1N1 vaccine to faculty and staff due to limited supply of the vaccine, but it will consider it in the future if supplies increase. Check Cowell’s Web site for updates on the H1N1 flu.

    Santa Clara University’s human resources department will allow staff who have exhausted their sick leave to borrow up to five additional days during this academic year specifically for H1N1 flu-related absences.

  •  Awards Presented at the College of Arts and Sciences Fall Convocation

    The Nancy Keil Service Excellence Award - Jan Davis, Philosophy
    In recognition of having established a well-deserved reputation for sustained excellence and initiative in providing technical or administrative support service, and for consistently approaching one’s responsibilities with a professionalism that demonstrates dedication to the welfare of students and others and that leads by example.

    Dr. David E. Logothetti Teaching Award - Laurie Poe, Mathematics and Computer Science
    In recognition of having established among colleagues and students a well-deserved reputation for an energetic, engaging, and effective teaching style, and having demonstrated the ability to motivate other teachers and learners.

    Professor Joseph Bayma, S.J., Scholarship Award - Russell Skowronek, Anthropology
    In recognition of having established among colleagues and students a well-deserved reputation for productive, meaningful, and rigorous scholarly or creative work, and for having demonstrated the ability to motivate other scholars or artists, teachers, and learners.

    Dr. John B. Drahmann Advising Award - Philip Kesten, Physics
    In recognition of having established among colleagues and students a well-deserved reputation for extraordinary dedication to student welfare through wise, informed, effective, and caring counsel, and having demonstrated the ability to motivate other teachers and learners.

    Bernard Hubbard, S.J., Creative Collaboration Award - The Department of Psychology
    In recognition of having established a well-deserved reputation for excellence in educating students by including them in professional research projects or creative activity, thereby transcending traditional teaching models to reach the heart of the research and creative process and, in this collaboration, for having inspired other scholars and artists.

    See pictures from the award ceremony.

  •  Offices on the Move

    Double check where you’re going before heading out to your meeting, or you might find yourself doing a lot of walking around campus. Several departments moved to new offices this summer. Check out the list below, and if you’re near any of the new offices, stop by and say hello.

    International Programs – 755 Franklin St.
    Northern California Innocence Project – 900 Lafayette St.
    Office of Marketing and Communications – Loyola Hall
    Pastoral Ministries – Kenna Hall
    Reading Center – Loyola Hall
    School of Education and Counseling Psychology – Loyola Hall
    School of Law – Bannan Hall
    School of Law Departments – Benson Center
    School of Law Remote Book Storage – 900 Lafayette St.
    Transportation and Parking Office for Students – next door to Campus Safety Services

    Watch a slideshow of OMC’s move.

  •  The de Saisset Museum Offers Eclectic Mix of Landscapes, Prints, and Sculptures This Fall

    The de Saisset Museum at Santa Clara University presents three collections from September 26 to December 4: Art of Richard Mayhew: Journey’s End, A Sense of Place: Location/Inspiration, and The Eclectic Eye: Works from a Private Collection.

    Richard Mayhew, who claims both African-American and Native American ancestry, is one of America’s greatest landscape painters. His love of land and nature comes from his childhood years living close to nature and hearing his Native American grandmother speak of the sacred bond that ties us all to the earth. Mayhew also taught at Brooklyn Museum Art School, the Art Students League, Smith College, Pennsylvania State University, and San Jose State University. His exhibition at the de Saisset Museum is part of a chronological retrospective of his 40-year career. The Museum of African Diaspora in San Francisco will feature his early work. The de Saisset will show work from the mid-70s to mid-90s, while the Museum of Art and History in Santa Cruz will display his most recent compositions.

    A Sense of Place includes oil paintings, watercolors, prints, and collage from artists William Keith, Henrietta Shore, Nathan Oliveira, Yvonne Jacquette, Gregory Edwards, David Huffman, and Weston Teruya. The focus of the works is on landscapes that have a specific reference point.

    The Eclectic Eye comes from an anonymous private collection that reflects a broad range of interests rather than one movement or time period in art history. It includes the cartoon parodies of Roy Lichtenstein and the print of the Campbell soup can by Andy Warhol. Also represented are prints by the surrealist René Magritte, a chessboard by Man Ray, and a number of examples of Op Art by Bridget Riley and others. In addition to contemporary art, several small but intricately formed pre-Columbian sculptures will be on view. Works from a number of artists who lived/worked in the San Francisco Bay area are also included such as Sam Francis, Carrie Abramovitz, Matt Kahn, and Peter Silten. Read more.

  •  Mighty Broncos: Making a Difference

    Whether you’re a serious athlete or a first-time swimmer, anyone can join Mighty Broncos, a team of Santa Clara University faculty, staff, friends, and family who train and compete together to raise money for cancer research. Every year, they compete in 5Ks, 10Ks, and even triathlons. Their biggest event took place Sept. 12-13, a time when most of the campus community was gearing up for the new academic year. The Mighty Broncos donned their wetsuits and laced their sneakers for the Pacific Grove Triathlon, which supports the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS).

    Amara Brook, psychology assistant professor, and her teammate from San Jose State University, took first place in the overall Olympic Relay and placed first in their class by over 10 minutes. Diane Barrera finished a strong sprint, placing second in her class. The other participants were:

    Phyllis Brown (English)
    Michelle Burnham (English)
    Ron Danielson (Information Services)
    Jonna Delgado (Human Resources)
    Barbara Fraser (Dramaturgy, Directing, History, Theatre, and Dance)
    Debbie Hirsch (EEO and Diversity)
    Jill Pellettieri (Spanish and Modern Languages and Literature)
    Jim Rowan (Information Technology)

    The team raised over $8,000 for LLS this year. They say they participate in this annual event in honor of those who are battling blood cancers. This year’s honoree is Leslie Zenner, a 2007 Santa Clara alumna who suffers from non-Hodgkin lymphoma. She is still going through chemotherapy to fight the disease.

    Mighty Broncos is looking for more faculty and staff to join the cause. They say even if you don’t know how to swim, you can still join the team. They say they do it, because it makes them feel good knowing that they could be helping to stop leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin lymphoma and myeloma from taking more lives. They also want to remind faculty and staff that it doesn’t take much to make a difference.

    “Some people don’t want to donate $5—that’s a Starbucks! It makes you wonder who’s going to pay for all the medical research,” says Hirsch.

    “I understand how everyone is going through tough economic times, but we’re just asking people to give-up one movie or a cup of coffee, because every dollar counts,” says Delagado.

    If you’re interested in learning more about Mighty Broncos, contact Debbie Hirsch at 408-554-4113 or via e-mail at

    Watch a slideshow of the Mighty Broncos at the Pacific Grove Triathlon.

  •  Santa Clara University Students Heading to Washington, D.C. for Solar Decathlon

    The solar panels are up, the kitchen cabinets are in, and the doors are open to the ultimate energy-efficient, solar-powered house built by students from Santa Clara University and California College of the Arts. Now, they’re off to compete in the U.S. Department of Energy’s 2009 Solar Decathlon in Washington, D.C., Oct. 8–16.

    Cranes arrived on Sept. 14 to lift the 800-square-foot house off its temporary foundation. Crews then moved the house, broken into three modules, onto three flatbed trucks. The trucks are leaving campus Sept. 15 and will travel nearly 3,000 miles to the nation’s capital where the students will reassemble the house on the National Mall next to 19 other student-built homes.

    The students unveiled the house to the public and conducted tours during a send-off celebration that was held on Sept. 1. Solar Decathlon Director Richard King, Santa Clara Mayor Patricia Mahan, and Applied Materials President and CEO Mike Splinter were among the distinguished guests attending the event.

    President Michael Engh, S.J., highlighted how Santa Clara students’ work is helping to achieving a more just and sustainable future.

    “The team has worked to design a zero energy home that produces as much as energy as it needs from renewable resources, such as the sun, while designing an exterior landscape that uses and stores rain water and recycles the home’s own gray water,” said Engh.

    Some of the other features in and around the house include:

    • Radiant heating and cooling
    • Krypton and Argon gas-filled, triple- and double-paned glass windows and doors
    • Bamboo paneling and cabinetry
    • Reclaimed wood siding, floors, and deck
    • iPhone-controlled monitoring system

    Santa Clara University and California College of the Arts are the only schools from the Golden State and the entire West Coast involved in the Solar Decathlon. The students will be competing against college/university teams from the U.S., Canada, Germany, Puerto Rico, and Spain.

    Watch SCU students and their solar house on ABC.

    Watch SCU students and their solar house live on CBS.

    Watch SCU students and their solar house on NBC.

    Watch a slide show of SCU students disassembling solar house and cranes moving it onto the flatbed trucks.

    Watch a video profiling some of the SCU students who built the house.

    Watch a time lapse video showing the entire construction of the house.

    Watch a slide show of the send-off celebration that took place on Sept. 1.

    Follow Refract House on Facebook.

    Follow Refract House on Twitter.

  •  Accolades from U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review

    In its annual ranking, “America’s Best Colleges 2010,” U.S. News & World Report highlighted Santa Clara University as one of a group of 80 colleges and universities known for a strong commitment to teaching undergraduates.

    Santa Clara University was also featured in a section titled “Top Up-and-Coming- Schools” as part of a group of higher education institutions that have recently made striking improvements or innovations.

    In addition, for the 20th consecutive year, Santa Clara was ranked second overall among 115 master’s universities in the West. SCU’s average undergraduate graduation rate—85 percent—was the second highest in the country among all national master’s level universities. SCU’s School of Engineering was ranked #19 among U.S. engineering schools, where the highest degree awarded is a bachelor’s or master’s. Read more.

    The Princeton Review named Santa Clara University as one of the country’s best institutions for undergraduate education in the new 2010 edition of its annual guidebook, “The Best 371 Colleges.”

    Only about 15 percent of America’s 2,500 four-year colleges and two Canadian colleges are profiled in the book. It includes detailed profiles of the colleges with school rating scores in eight categories, plus ranking lists of top 20 schools in 62 categories based on The Princeton Review’s surveys of students attending the colleges.

    Student comments about Santa Clara University included praise of the school’s small size, which “fosters an excellent community and strong access to and interaction with faculty,” and recognition that “professional placement in the Bay Area is extraordinary.” Students also cited science, business, and engineering as the school’s academic fortes, along with great athletic facilities and career services. Read more.

  •  Santa Clara University's First Year Law School Students Diverse, Academically Strong

    The largest pool of applicants since 2004 has yielded an academically strong and ethnically diverse class of first-year law students at Santa Clara University School of Law.

    This year’s 247 full-time and 80 part-time students come from 31 U.S. states and nine countries including China, India, and South Korea. They attended 139 different undergraduate schools, and 39 of them already have advanced degrees -- including 13 Ph.D.s.

    The incoming class is a bit younger than in prior years: The full-time students have a median age of 24, down from 25 two years ago, while part-timers - who tend to be working professionals - have a median age of 27, down from 29 three years ago. Read more.

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