Dear Colleagues and Students:

I try not to use these campuswide e-mails to promote events or other news more appropriately covered by Today@ColoradoState — but I did want to draw your attention to a couple of items NOT related to the budget that I think are important for the campus community this spring.

CSU President’s Commission on Women and Gender Equity

The CSU President’s Commission on Women and Gender Equity just completed its first campus climate survey since 1996, and the full survey is up on the Commission’s website. This relatively informal survey was conducted using the same model used in 1996, for comparison purposes; the goal for the future is to conduct a more formalized survey on a more routine basis. Even so, at a time when we are persistently concerned about providing competitive salaries and benefits to faculty and staff, these survey results are a welcome reminder that we actually have made quite a bit of progress on a lot of fronts over the last 15 years. Responses from faculty, staff, and students across the board indicated a much more positive perception of our institutional handling of issues related to equity, safety, and overall campus climate.

While the survey numbers show marked improvement, they also indicate that we continue to share concerns about balancing family, work, and school commitments; ensuring equity in salaries and raises; and providing access to child care. These are all issues we take seriously and have been working to address through such efforts as the improved benefits offered through our Commitment to Campus, led by VP for University Operations Amy Parsons. And while overall feelings about campus safety have improved, safety will always be a high priority for the university, and we consistently seek out ways we can do better. I encourage all of you to look the Commission’s findings and continue to share your ideas on how we can continue to build a safer, healthier, and more equitable campus for all members of our community.

Autism Spectrum Disorders Symposium

Along the same lines, I wanted to reiterate what Rick Miranda and Blanche Hughes mentioned in their note to faculty and staff last week. CSU will be hosting a free, universitywide symposium March 23-24 to help prepare our campus community to work successfully with students who have Autism Spectrum Disorders. The second day of the symposium is specifically targeted at CSU faculty and staff and focuses on issues impacting learning and the classroom. This is our first, universitywide program focused on the needs of this growing segment of our student population, and our hope is that it will serve as the basis for ongoing planning and discussion. Please participate if you can.

Men’s and Women’s Basketball Teams

Last but not least, I want to thank and congratulate our men’s and women’s basketball teams on their memorable seasons — a result of a lot of hard work and commitment on the part of our coaches and student athletes. The energy and excitement from students and fans has been a big part of their success, as it is for all our teams. So let’s keep that support going as the men’s team heads to the Mountain West Conference tournament this week, looking to extend their outstanding season.

That’s it for now — have a great week. (And for those of you who really do want an update on the budget, Provost Miranda will be sending out information on the proposed draft budget later this week.)


Dr. Tony Frank