A.S. update: CSU funding, winter intersession, campus safety week


Samantha Bonpensiero

Members of the A.S. University Council at a September meeting.

by Sofia Bert, Senior Staff Writer

On March 21, the Associated Students University Council met for their bi-weekly meeting to discuss the California State University’s funding from the state government, possible winter courses and campus safety week.

CSU funding

In January, California Gov. Jerry Brown released his 2019 budget proposal, which calls for giving the CSU system $92 million — less than half of the $263 million the system requested.

While the state’s final budget may look significantly different, the current proposal would leave the CSU with a large deficit.

“The deficit of $171 million would be devastating to the CSU,” university senate designee Cezar Ornatowski said. “Just for your information, the  CSU’s basic operating cost for heating, cooling and electricity is at $61 million.”

The CSU chancellor has been looking at ways to handle the deficit, Ornatowski said.

Some of the  possible solutions include raising tuition, reducing programs and services or cutting the number of students accepted to CSU campuses. The CSU currently accepts the  top 44 percent of high school graduates, Ornatowski said, though the system is only mandated to take the top 33 percent of high school graduates.

No action has taken place yet.

The University Senate is debating a moratorium on creating new general education courses amid the ongoing budget uncertainty, A.S. College of Education representative Matt Blutinger said.

About half of CSU campuses have enacted a similar moratoriums, Blutinger said.

Winter intersession

The College of Extended Studies is proposing a “winter intersession” of courses during winter break to go into effect in January 2019.

SDSU had a winter intersession program in the early 2000s but the program ended due to a change in the academic calendar, Casey Rothenberg, executive director of Extended Studies programs, said.

Their new plan is based off of Sonoma State’s winter intersession program where courses are offered over a two-week period and mostly are offered online.

The winter intersession would be fully funded through student fees and there would be a four unit maximum for course load, Rothenberg said.

Campus safety week

The week after students return from spring break, SDSU will be having its first Campus Safety Week.

The week’s themes are:

  • Transportation safety – Monday
  • Alcohol and drug awareness – Tuesday
  • Self-defense – Wednesday
  • Mental health – Thursday
  • Let’s talk safety – Friday

Multiple events regarding personal and campus safety will take place throughout the week.

Some of the events include an alcohol and drug abuse panel from 7:30 to 9 p.m. in the Conrad Prebys Aztec Student Union on Tuesday, April 3, a self-defense instruction course  from 2 – 3 p.m. on the ENS field on Wednesday, April 4, and a guided meditation from 12 – 1 p.m. in Montezuma Hall on Thursday, April 5.

Upcoming Events

The Professional Studies and Fine Arts College Council is hosting its Lend a Hand campaign for homeless students and community members until April 23. They are accepting donations of clothes, non-jewelry accessories and shoes. Donations can be dropped off in PSFA room 212.

The College of Sciences and the College of Engineering will be collaborating to host an A.S. open forum on April 2 from 2 – 6 p.m. in the Pride suite.

The College of Engineering will be hosting a ping-pong tournament in honor of their late dean, Morteza “Monte” Mehrabadi, on from 12 – 2 p.m. on April 12 on the EIS courtyard.