Chancellor's Recent Speeches

Remarks by Dr. Charles B. Reed
Chancellor, California State University
Auxiliary Organizations Association
Palm Springs, CA
January 9, 2005

Thank you for inviting me here again this evening. I was thrilled to be able to get out to the desert where it’s always sunny and it doesn’t ever rain…

I want to take this opportunity to thank you for all you do. We have made great improvements in the management and operations of our auxiliary organizations.

For instance, we have come a long way in our debt management program.
In the last three years, we have issued $675.5 million through our state revenue bond program.

We are also managing our risks more wisely. And we are more accountable to the public and the Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees has much more confidence in our operations.

I am proud of how far we have come since I first spoke at this meeting six years ago.

You and I know about the massive impact that our campuses and auxiliaries have on our communities.

But we now have tangible proof that the work we do has a massive impact across the state of California.

In November, the CSU released a report showing how the entire university system dramatically affects the economic, social, intellectual and cultural life of our state.
This is the first time anyone has conducted a systemwide impact analysis of this magnitude. The results show that:

  • The CSU provides a four-fold return on investment: For every $1 the state invests in the CSU, the CSU generates $4.41 in spending. This means that the CSU more than pays for itself. Few other public entities can make that claim.

  • CSU-related expenditures – including auxiliaries – create over $13 billion annually in economic activity and support more than 200,000 jobs in the state.

  • When you take into account the impact that our 1.7 million alumni have on California, we have a $53 billion impact.

  • The CSU provides the majority of the skilled professional workers that are critical to the state’s knowledge-based industries such as agriculture, engineering, business, technology, media, and computer science.

    The CSU graduates more students in these fields than all other California universities and colleges combined.

  • The CSU is a leader in educating a diverse population: More than half of all undergraduate degrees granted to Latino, African American and Native American students in California were awarded by the CSU in 2002/03.

  • The CSU improves local communities and residents' quality of life: CSU students contribute 30 million hours a year to community service activities including education and health projects.

Why is this study important? Because it means that every day, your work contributes to making California’s communities stronger and its workforce more competitive.

Each one of us affiliated with the CSU plays a role in helping shape California’s future and its future success through our work at the CSU.

Ever since I came to California seven years ago, I have felt that Californians undervalue the vital importance of the CSU system and its campuses.

These results clearly show that the CSU is the university that is working for California.
The CSU has a great story to tell and I hope you can all help us tell that story.

You can read more about the report on our web site at www.calstate.edu. I hope that you will read it and share it with family and friends and colleagues throughout the year.

Communications Plan

This impact study is the beginning of a long-term communications campaign in which we will ask the entire CSU family—students, faculty, staff, alumni and all of our employees—to help us spread the word that the CSU is working for California.

As part of this communications plan, we are holding a series of events around the state.
These events will feature the CSU’s role in key industries for California.

The first event, which will focus on the CSU’s contributions to agriculture, will be held at Fresno State on February 4. It will be a half-day program that will involve approximately 200 of the most influential people in California’s agriculture industry.

You will hear more about the other events in areas such as biotechnology and life sciences as we schedule them throughout the year.

Budget

One last item I want to spend a few minutes talking about is our budget.

For the past three years I have come here, I have had to deliver bad news.

Tomorrow at 1 p.m. we will find out whether or not we are going to hear some good news for a change. That’s when the governor will release his budget for the year ahead.
Right now we are hoping and assuming the governor will fully fund the compact for higher education.

The compact is the agreement that the governor made last year with the CSU and the UC system to give us predictable funding increases from 2005/06 through 2010/11. We took a lot of criticism and heat for agreeing to that compact, but I believe it is one of the best decisions I’ve made.

Based on the compact, the CSU has submitted a budget plan that addresses long-range goals to meet demand for access, pay competitive wages, offer financial aid, and improve facilities and equipment.

We hope that the compact funding can help us recover – quickly – the more than $500 million that we lost over the past three years due to the state budget crisis.

For 2005/06, we have requested about $200 million in new revenue for the CSU.

The new revenue includes enrollment growth funding to reverse a trend of two years of lowered enrollments and budget cuts.

Our request also calls for a 3 percent increase for general operations, including mandatory costs and long-term needs that have not been funded over the past three years.

You will hear the full details on the budget tomorrow from Richard West.

Over the next several months we will be working with the governor, his administration, and legislative leaders to make the case for the CSU, and ensure that our university receives its fair share of state resources. I hope you will help us support the governor’s budget and hold the line on cuts.

And I hope that by this time next year I will be able to come here with more good news on the budget.

I want to close by thanking you for all that you do to help our universities be the best they can be. I am looking forward to a very positive, constructive new year. And I hope you will continue to help the CSU work for California.

Thank you very much.


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