Public Affairs

California State University Campuses Receive $120,000 for Pilot
Programs in Higher Education

Educational leaders on three California campuses will develop and implement new plans to prepare students for 21st century challenges

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Erik Fallis, California State University, (562) 951-4800,
(562) 477-7317

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(December 23, 2008) – The Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) announced that California State University (CSU) campuses in Sacramento, San José, and Chico will each receive $40,000 to enhance and study cutting-edge educational programs.

“As the largest state university system in the nation, we take great pride in being a leader in exploring novel ways to meet the needs of California’s democracy, society and economy,” said Ken O’Donnell, CSU associate dean of academic program planning. “Our campuses are on the cutting edge of innovation when it comes to teaching and learning. This national funding will be put to good use in enhancing programs throughout the state.”

  • California State University, Sacramento will redesign its general education program to prepare students successfully for the global, civic, and economic challenges that all Americans now face.

  • San José State University will launch and study the success of a new educational program designed to ease the transition of community college students into the state university system.

  • California State University, Chico will study the impacts of the campus’ groundbreaking service learning program on overall student learning and educational outcomes.

These three pilot programs are part of the AAC&U’s Give Students a Compass project which works with institutions in three large state systems of higher education: the CSU, the Oregon University system and the University of Wisconsin system.

Nationally, $360,000 will be awarded with funding provided in part by the Carnegie Corporation of New York and State Farm Companies Foundation.

Give Students a Compass is part of AAC&U’s larger initiative, Liberal Education and America’s Promise: Excellence for Everyone as a Nation Goes to College (LEAP).  LEAP is an initiative that champions the value of a liberal education—for individual students and for a nation dependent on economic creativity and democratic vitality.


About the California State University
The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 450,000 students and 46,000 faculty and staff. Since the system was created in 1961, it has awarded nearly 2.5 million degrees, about 90,000 annually. Its mission is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever-changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California.

About the Association of American Colleges and Universities
The Association of American Colleges and Universities is the leading national association concerned with the quality, vitality, and public standing of undergraduate liberal education. Its members are committed to extending the advantages of a liberal education to all students, regardless of academic specialization or intended career. Founded in 1915, AAC&U now comprises more than 1,150 accredited public and private colleges and universities of every type and size.

AAC&U functions as a catalyst and facilitator, forging links among presidents, administrators, and faculty members who are engaged in institutional and curricular planning. Its mission is to reinforce the collective commitment to liberal education at both the national and local levels and to help individual institutions keep the quality of student learning at the core of their work as they evolve to meet new economic and social challenges.