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HSU Set to Receive 884-acre Forest

November 14, 2018 - 3:07pm
Humboldt State University is on the verge of receiving an 884-acre forest near campus, which will be used for research and field experiences. The effort is possible due to a generous donation from R.H. Emmerson & Son LLC, as well as major grants from state and federal agencies.

The plan received a positive review today by the CSU Board of Trustees.

The forest is along Jacoby Creek about eight miles and a 25-minute drive from campus. It borders sections of Arcata’s Jacoby Creek Forest, which is part of the larger community forest, and it encompasses a large portion of the Jacoby Creek watershed. The City of Arcata will also add 83 acres to its portion of the forest.

The view from Fickle Hill Road looking into the Jacoby Creek Forest.
The area includes extensive stands of second-growth Redwoods as well as old-growth Cedar. It is important habitat for a variety of species including northern spotted owl, bald eagle, Pacific fisher, and red-legged frog, and it is important for the health of downstream species including coho salmon and chinook. Once HSU receives the property, it will be permanently protected from conversion to any non-forestry uses.

“This is a big moment for Humboldt State University,” said HSU President Lisa Rossbacher. “The new forestland will provide amazing opportunities for our students, while also helping to protect an important watershed. I’m so thankful for everyone who has been involved in making it happen, especially R.H. Emmerson & Son for making a partial donation of the land, and the staff in the City of Arcata.”

Specific academic programs at HSU that are expected to utilize the forest include Geology, Fisheries, Environmental Sciences and Management, Wildlife, Native American Studies, Anthropology, Forestry, Soils, and Recreation Management, among others. The availability of the forest is also expected to help numerous programs better compete for grants and contracts.

After it is formally transferred to HSU, the forestland will be jointly managed through a cooperative agreement with the City of Arcata, which will include sharing fire roads, forest data and monitoring, scientific studies, and public access. Oversight at HSU will be through its College of Natural Resources & Sciences, with support from a Faculty Advisory Committee and a Community Advisory Committee. A tenured faculty member will be designated as the Forest Director.

The new combined forestland owned and protected by Arcata and HSU will cover more than 2,273 contiguous acres of the Jacoby Creek watershed.

Efforts to obtain the land have been underway since 2012, with leadership by the City of Arcata. The City was concerned the land could end up fragmented and converted to non-forest use and negatively affect nearby forestland it has owned since 1944, but it was unable to seek direct ownership of the entire tract of land due to acreage limits on its state forest management permit. HSU faculty were involved in conceiving of the plan for University ownership, as well as assessing the property to determine its value to academic programs.

“I couldn’t be happier about the addition of 83 key acres to the Jacoby Creek Forest,” said Arcata Mayor Sofia Pereira. “The new HSU public forest buffers our City forest from future potentially incompatible uses, and this project gives the City and HSU the opportunity to work as a team on forest management in the upper Jacoby Creek watershed. Preserving our natural resources is so important, and I think this project is a big win for local forest conservation.”

Old growth western red cedar on the newly acquired forest.
The complex process for acquiring the land involves a partial donation from the private landowner and purchase utilizing a number of grants, including final funding the City expects from the California Wildlife Conservation Board. The City will then grant the property to the University, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2018 or in early 2019.

The property is valued at approximately $6.2 million. Funding includes California Fish & Wildlife Prop 1 for $1,754,000; a pending grant from the Wildlife Conservation Board for $1,725,000; Calfire Climate Investment Fund for $800,000; California Resources Agency for $229,000; and USFWS for $44,000.

The remaining amount, approximately $1.7 million, is a donation from R.H. Emmerson & Son LLC, which currently owns the property.

Maintenance costs for the forest are expected to be minimal. Eventually, the University expects to develop a sustainable harvest plan, which will generate revenue for not only maintenance but for research and projects at the site. Students will be employed to work on projects like wildlife inventory, water quality monitoring, and harvest plans.

Children’s Book About Tsunami Boat Translated into Spanish

November 9, 2018 - 10:59am
"The Extraordinary Voyage of Kamome: A Tsunami Boat Comes Home" is a true story about students in two countries who formed a connection through a natural disaster and a boat. With the help of HSU students, the bilingual English-Japanese children’s book has been translated into Spanish. “El Viaje Extraordinario de Kamome: Una Lanchita Sobreviviente Regresa a Casa” is now available through HSU Digital Commons and Amazon.
Humboldt State University Press recently published “El Viaje Extraordinario de Kamome: Una Lanchita Sobreviviente Regresa a Casa.”

“The Extraordinary Voyage of Kamome: A Tsunami Boat Comes Home“is a heartwarming true story about students in two countries who formed a connection through a natural disaster and a boat. The bilingual English-Japanese children’s book became the inaugural publication of Humboldt State University Press in 2015.

With the help of HSU students and the campus community, a Spanish-Japanese edition, “El Viaje Extraordinario de Kamome: Una Lanchita Sobreviviente Regresa a Casa,” has just been released and is available through HSU Digital Commons and Amazon.

Written by HSU Geology Professor Emeritus Lori Dengler and Amya Miller and illustrated by Amy Uyeki, the book is meant to start a conversation about earthquake preparedness in families internationally.

<< For more background and updates go to >>

The book recounts the journey of a small boat swept into the ocean after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan. It drifted across the Pacific until reaching the shores of Crescent City in Northern California two years later.

A small barnacle-encrusted boat (left) — debris from the 2011 tsunami — washed ashore in Crescent City in 2013. A group of high school students cleaned and returned it to a Japanese high school

Dengler helped confirm the vessel belonged to Takata High School in Rikuzentaka, one of several cities destroyed by the tsunami. With the assistance of Miller, the Special Assistant to the mayor of Rikuzentakata at the time, Del Norte County high school students cleaned and returned the boat to the high school in Japan, beginning a process that has resulted in four student exchanges between the schools. In April 2018, a Sister City relationship between Rikuzentakata and Crescent City was formalized.

German, Swedish, and Russian versions will be published in the future, and two Native language translations — Tolowa and Yurok – are currently under discussion. Proceeds from sales of the books are all used to support the student exchange program and to promote tsunami education and awareness.

All five languages stem from countries and tribal lands in Oregon and California that have been or can be affected by earthquakes and tsunamis.

HSU students, World Languages & Cultures Professor Rosamel Benevides-Garb, HSU’s Department of Geology, and friends of Dengler, Miller, and Uyeki have come together to make these translations possible.

The Swedish translation of the book was completed by Claire Schenke, who is a friend of Uyeki. The German translation was completed by Horst Rademacher, a lecturer at UC Berkeley, and the Russian translation was done by Elena Suliemani, a tsunami modeler at the University of Alaska.

The translations were done as part of a volunteering process for everyone involved.

“It’s been so gratifying, and everybody has been willing to help out. It has been a special experience and continues to be,” says Dengler.

The Spanish translation began as a project by Hector Flores (‘17, Geology). As an undergraduate, he completed a certificate in the Spanish Translation program, interned for the Redwood Coast Tsunami Work Group, and provided Spanish translations of a tsunami brochure, “Viviendo Sobre Tierra Instable” (Living on Shaky Ground). He received the 2015 HSU “Excellence in Community Service” award for his efforts.

Under the supervision of Benevides-Garb, 11 students in his Spanish translation and interpretation class assessed and edited the Flores translation.

Benavides-Garb, who reviewed the book and is currently the associate dean of the College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences, says the process provided students real-world translation experience.

“An amazing work has been generated at HSU, and it’s a strong academic component generated with a global vision. Participation by students has given professional experience in return through this process,” he says. “Two communities engaged and got to know each other, and something that was a tragic event became a blessing. Professor Dengler has managed to do this by educating a larger population about natural disasters.”

The Japanese, English, and Spanish audio versions are available at

Chancellor White’s Statement on Thousand Oaks Shooting

November 8, 2018 - 4:21pm

California State University Chancellor Timothy P. White issued the following statement:

“All of us in the California State University extend our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of those whose loved ones were lost or injured at the Borderline Bar and Grill on Wednesday evening. Such tragic and senseless violence breaks our hearts and calls us to redouble our resolve and effort to work together for a real solution. And at the same time, we thank and commend the courage and skill of the first responders.

Many CSU campuses are providing counseling services for students, faculty, and staff; in addition, I am asking all members of the CSU family to reach out to those in need – both those who are affected by this tragedy and those who are struggling with issues that demand our attention. We can and must be the beacon of hope and help during this tragic time.”

Housing Liaison Aims to Help Students Avoid Homelessness

November 6, 2018 - 12:06pm
To help alleviate homelessness among students, who face a housing shortage and other barriers, Humboldt State has created a new position: an off-campus housing liaison. It’s the first position of its kind at the University and in the 23-campus California State University system.

Social Work graduate student Chant’e Catt, who experienced homelessness when she first transferred to Humboldt State, was hired to help students learn about housing rights, how to be a good tenant, and more. She has worked with more than 300 students since HSU established the position in January 2018.

Creation of this role is one of several measures designed to address housing and food challenges for students. The University now provides short-term emergency housing in residence halls and emergency scholarships to help students facing homelessness afford rental deposits and other needs. HSU also offers services under the HSU Oh SNAP! Student Food Programs.

In a recent statewide study commissioned by the California State University Chancellor’s Office, Social Work Professor Jennifer Maguire and CSU Long Beach Social Work Professor Rashida Crutchfield found troubling rates of housing insecurity among CSU students. At Humboldt State, 19 percent of students reported being housing insecure at least once in the last 12 months.

Catt was one of those students, and lived homeless for 16 weeks during her first semester at HSU, along with her young daughter, partner, and dog. Based on her experience, she co-founded the Homeless Student Advocate Alliance (HSAA), a student club that advocated and supported student housing. As a result of the club’s work, the housing liaison position was created and Catt was hired to fill the position.

In a report Catt prepared earlier this year for Housing & Residence Life, she identifies barriers student face, including: a shortage of housing due to the local and student populations, marijuana grow houses, and vacation rentals; racial inequality and discrimination faced by students of color; access to a co-signer; and the difficulty of touring and securing housing for students not currently in the area.

Students who get help arrive at her office in many ways: from the recommendation of campus offices like C.A.R.E., C.A.P.S., word of mouth, the HSAA, and more.

When someone reaches out, Catt begins by talking with them so they understand the local housing market and unique difficulties students face. She also sends them an intake survey, which helps her understand their particular situation. Do they have pets? Do they have enough money for a deposit?

She’ll then provide students a variety of resources depending on their needs: books and resources for renter’s rights, recommendations for lawyers on tenant issues, mentorship on applications, and advice on how to be a good tenant a good roommate, and more.

Catt also maintains a list of current housing availabilities. In her advocacy work and role at HSU, she’s developed many contacts in the community, including landlords. “Community members tend to call me with a lot of resources,” she says.

Catt also conducts outtake surveys, asking students to share how much she was able to assist, and if the student’s issues were solved. These responses have helped her and Housing determine ways to improve their services.

In addition to her day-to-day work, Catt is working with three other Social Work graduate students, the Office of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, Equity Arcata, HSU Housing, and the cities of Arcata and Eureka to develop an education program for landlords and tenants. If successful, the program will focus on equitable practices, rights and responsibilities of tenants and landlords, and more.

“The off-campus housing liaison is a good town-and-gown position,” Catt says. “The biggest issues between students and landlords began because of a lack of communication between entities. There was a lot of fingers pointing and no one taking action.”

Community education is another key to the local housing shortage. HSU and College of the Redwoods hosted a community housing summit this year to build awareness and empathy, and to support existing programs and services. Equity Arcata, an effort of the University, City of Arcata, and local businesses to address equity and inclusion issues, is a hub for local stakeholders to prioritize affordable housing.

The University is pairing homeless awareness with an overall focus on student wellbeing, supported by student wellbeing ambassadors and an interactive online map to guide students toward mental and physical health and academic success. Students can also find guidance for signing up for various types of insurance, including Medi-Cal.

Two upcoming events will highlight student housing insecurity:

The Humboldt County Homeless College Student Photovoice Project explored resiliency among local college students who experienced being homeless while attending college in Humboldt County. In collaboration with Professor Pam Bowers from Social Work, eight HSU students took photos and shared stories related to their experiences over the 2017-18 academic year. A gallery event highlights these stories and photos with the primary goal to honor student experiences, and the challenges faced in our rural community related to housing, and seek solutions through action research.

The gallery will be available throughout the month of November in the SBS building lounge.

Chant’e Catt and Masters of Social Work coordinators Kate Harris, Sonya Woody, and Ashley Bradshaw will host a Town Hall Discussion on Tuesday, Nov. 30 from 11 a.m. -1 p.m. in the Great Hall. The topic will be development of a Tenant and Landlord Education Program. The public is invited to learn about the program and give feedback. Please RSVP by Nov. 16 at 5 p.m. at or 707.826.5509.

For information about off-campus housing resources or to reach the off-campus housing liaison, visit the Living Off Campus website.

A Pathway to Better Health Care for Native Americans

November 1, 2018 - 11:00am
Humboldt State University has partnered with the University of Illinois to encourage and support students who study medicine to return to their rural communities and address the health care needs of Native Americans and their communities.

The Rural Medical Education (RMED) Program, located on the University of Illinois Rockford campus, identifies and recruits candidates from rural areas who intend to return to their home communities or serve similar communities. RMED students complete a Rural Health Professions curriculum along with the traditional medical curriculum. This prepares students with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes required to be effective rural health professionals. The RMED program has a 70 percent success rate, the second highest success rate in the country for placing medical doctors in rural communities.

The Native American Pathways Program, the new partnership between HSU and University of Illinois, provides a clear pathway to the medical profession, including four years of education at HSU in preparation for medical school, four years of medical school at the University of Illinois RMED Program, and assistance in finding residency education positions in the Arcata/Eureka area. Up to two students will be selected to participate in the Pathway program each year.

Students recommended under Pathways programs have a 95 percent acceptance rate at RMED. Admitted students pay in-state tuition, and receive individual advising for pursuing grants and scholarships to support completion of the four-year medical degree.

Students at any stage in their college career can apply for the Pathways program. But in the first round of applications ending March 1, 2019, HSU’s College of Natural Resources & Sciences will be seeking third-year students on track to graduate in 2020.

The Native American Pathways Program seeks Native American and non-Native American students. If you are interested in learning more about HSU pre-medical programs, please contact HSU Pre-Medical Advisor and Professor Jianmin Zhong at To apply for the Native American Pathways Program, call the College of Natural Resources & Sciences Dean’s Office at 707.826.3256.

NCAA, Defense Department Expand Concussion Study with $22.5M in New Funding

October 31, 2018 - 6:11am
Athletes at Humboldt State University to continue participation The world's most comprehensive concussion study is being dramatically expanded with an infusion of nearly $22.5 million in new funding from the U.S. Department of Defense and the NCAA to examine the impacts of head injuries over several years.

The NCAA-DOD Concussion Assessment, Research and Education Consortium, known as the CARE Consortium, was established as part of the broader NCAA-DOD Grand Alliance in 2014, with the goals of understanding how concussions affect the brain and identifying ways to improve diagnosis, treatment and prevention.

Led by Indiana University School of Medicine, the University of Michigan and the Medical College of Wisconsin, in collaboration with the Uniformed Services University, the study has collected data on more than 39,000 student-athletes and cadets at 30 colleges and military service academies — including more than 3,300 who have experienced concussions. This represents the largest sample of concussions ever researched in a single study.

The initial phase of the study — made possible by a joint NCAA-Department of Defense grant of $30 million — focused on the acute effects of concussions by evaluating concussed participants with a sequence of clinical and advanced research tests in the immediate hours, days and weeks after the injury, and comparing the results with baseline tests administered at the start of the study.

The new phase will include comprehensive testing of the participants when they leave college and up to four years after their collegiate sports or service academy career has ended. This expanded approach will enable researchers to study the intermediate and cumulative effects of concussion and repetitive head impact exposure. Importantly, researchers hope to differentiate between the effects of concussion, repetitive head impact, and sports participation with no history of either concussion or repetitive head impact exposure.

“We have gathered important information about the short-term effects of concussions over the past few years, but there is still a lot we do not understand about how our brains respond to different types of impact over time,” said Dr. Thomas W. McAllister, chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Indiana University School of Medicine and the leader of the study’s administrative and operations center. “By comparing these groups across multiple years, we think we can parse out the effects of concussions, versus repetitive head impacts, versus normal life at university. This is critical for us to make informed decisions that protect our athletes, members of the military and other members of our communities.”

The evaluations will include clinical tests to assess attributes such as balance and memory but also will probe changes to participants’ psychological health to determine what role, if any, concussions and repetitive head impacts may have on depression, anxiety and emotional control. Researchers also will continue to conduct advanced research tests, including genetic analysis, brain imaging and blood tests to measure biomarkers associated with inflammation and nervous system dysfunction. It is conceivable that the advanced research tests will help identify genes and other objective markers that render an athlete or cadet more or less susceptible to concussion or injury from repetitive head impacts.

The NCAA is providing $12.5 million in funding over two years for the second stage of research. The Department of Defense approved a two-year grant of nearly $10 million.

Humboldt State University’s North Coast Concussion Program (NCCP) is among the institutions with athletes who are participating in the study.

“Some of the biggest challenges related to concussion injuries is knowing the best ways to prevent and diagnose them, and how best to manage recovery,” says Justus Ortega, a Kinesiology professor and director of NCCP. “One the most important aspects of this phase of research is that the data will help us find the best approaches to concussion assessment, management, and prevention.”

Starting in 2014, HSU researchers conducted baseline and post-injury monitoring – up to six months after injury – of neurocognitive, motor control, and behavioral data in about 400 HSU athletes from all sports. In this next phase of research, the NCCP received a $248,000 grant to test 225 HSU athletes and to support 14 students who will assist Ortega administer baseline and post-injury tests, analyze data, and develop peer-reviewed research papers.

“This new phase of funding represents a critical extension to the original study goals, allowing us to take an unprecedented look at cumulative and persistent effects of concussion and repetitive head impact exposure,” said Dr. Brian Hainline, NCAA chief medical officer. “What we learn from this research will advance the science of traumatic brain injury and improve our understanding of how to best support the health and well-being of student-athletes, not only during their collegiate athletics experience but beyond.”

In addition to expanding the scope of the study, the CARE Consortium is adding a representative from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences to its research team. Dr. Paul F. Pasquina is a retired Army colonel, professor and chair of the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine and director of the Center for Rehabilitation Sciences Research. His role with the CARE Consortium is to promote and facilitate the involvement of the four military service academies in the consortium.

“Optimizing the health and performance of our warfighters is paramount to enhancing the readiness and lethality of the force,” Terry M. Rauch, acting deputy assistant secretary of defense (Health Readiness Policy and Oversight), said regarding the Department of Defense’s participation in the study. “Traumatic brain injuries are a major readiness concern as our warfighters are particularly susceptible to these injuries during combat and training. The department is leading efforts in research to better understand how to prevent, diagnose and treat TBIs across the range of military operations. However, much more work needs to be done, and this partnership with the NCAA and participating academic institutions provides valuable evidence to optimize the health and performance of our warfighters.”

Other study leaders include:
• Steven Broglio, professor of kinesiology and director of the Michigan Concussion Center at the University of Michigan. Broglio leads the longitudinal clinical study core, which oversees all clinical aspects of the study.
• Michael McCrea, professor of neurosurgery and co-director of the Center for Neurotrauma Research at the Medical College of Wisconsin. McCrea leads the advanced research core, which includes head impact sensor technologies, advanced neuroimaging and biological markers that include detailed genetic testing.
• Indiana University School of Medicine, under the direction of McAllister, which provides regulatory and fiduciary oversight, as well as biostatistics and data management, neuroimaging, bioinformatics, biomarkers/biospecimen management, and other support resources for the consortium. Indiana University School of Medicine partners with the Datalys Center and QuesGen Systems in this effort.

Already, the CARE Consortium has generated information related to important topics such as the impact of removing student-athletes from play after a concussion; the influence of age at the time of first concussion; sleep and concussion recovery; and tools and tests used to assess concussions. A list of the scientific publications resulting from the CARE Consortium study may be found on the NCAA Sport Science Institute website.

Zero Waste Conference Coming to Humboldt State

October 26, 2018 - 11:41am
Humboldt State’s 2018 Zero Waste Conference will feature a week of food, workshops, speakers, documentaries, panels and more, seeking to “Redefine Waste in an Age of Capitalism.”

The conference, which runs Monday, Nov. 5 through Friday, Nov. 9, will open with a banquet and keynote address from keynote speaker Tedd Ward, Director of the Del Norte Solid Waste Management Authority. Ward has promoted the creation of jobs from discards and environmental design, ending welfare for wasting, and zero waste for the last two dozen years.

Other topics include homesteading, deconstructing a “cheap society,” composting, the current state of recycling, bicycle learning, and sustainability.

The Zero Waste Conference is a convention for engaged citizens looking to create active change in waste and consumption practices, hosted by HSU’s Waste-Reduction & Resource Awareness Program (WRRAP). The conference provides the opportunity for students, professors, scientists, activists, and community members to come together and exchange ideas, experience, and expertise.

Through various keynote speakers, workshops, forums, film screenings, and performances, the conference aims to fuse power and people to promote a comprehensive and inclusive zero waste approach. With an emphasis on upstream waste prevention, it promotes resource recovery and conservation, and ultimately minimize landfill-bound waste. Prepare yourself to be challenged, excited, and inspired!

For more information, visit the WRRAP website.

Zero Waste Conference series of events:

Monday | November 5
Bagel Brunch and Mindfulness, 10 a.m.–noon, Nelson Hall East 106
Join us for a free brunch sponsored by Los Bagels, followed by mindfulness meditation and discussion on how to create space and time for yourself in a society that equates time to money.

Zero Waste Banquet, 6 p.m., Kate Buchanan Room
Join us for a free zero waste meal catered by Eureka Natural Foods. Vegetarian and vegan options will be available.

Tedd Ward: The Waste We Want, 6:30 p.m. Kate Buchanan Room
Discard recovery relies on training our communities to waste responsibly. We need to avoid stumbling over what is actually handed to us as we take steps to get what we really want. Tedd Ward has promoted the creation of jobs from discards and environmental design, ending welfare for wasting, and zero waste for the last two dozen years.

Tuesday | November 6
Trash Talk & Walk, noon-2 p.m., meet at the UC Quad at noon and again at 1 p.m.
Trash Talk is a way to get students on campus thinking about waste and the trash that is littered around campus, while also being a space for concerned students to share general ideas about creating any sort of institutional change on campus.

Homesteading with Nick Perdue, 3-4:30 p.m., CCAT
In this talk, Nick Perdue, Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography, will present his creation of a site map for his homestead that helps identify the spaces within his yard for growth, and visualize a regenerative and resilient design. The goal is to change the flow of materials within the homestead. He will talk about the creation of the map, how to use it, and what a map means within the context of designing such a system.

Speakers & Panel: Quantity over Quality? Deconstructing a “Cheap” Society, 6-7:30 p.m., Founders Hall East 118
This interdisciplinary speaker series and panel features a discussion between HSU professors and students. It will break down the idea of cheapness and what this means within the context of globalized capitalism. A variety of perspectives will be presented, ranging from economics to geography, followed by an interactive conversation with the audience. Presenters include: Laura Johnson, HSU Geography instructor; Will Fisher, HSU Economics instructor; John Meyer, HSU Political Science Professor and Department Chair; and Brittany Panela, Environmental Studies student (Appropriate Technology).

Wednesday | November 7
Composting Workshop, 3-5 p.m., CCAT
Join the WRRAP Compost Team for a breakdown on how the life cycle of compost works (using yummy edible materials, pretzel rods, Oreo crumbles, gummy candy, chocolate pudding). Also learn more about the process of the campus wide composting system, explaining step by step of how our team reduces food waste. Then learn how to do it yourself with making a compost bag for your personal composting needs at your home!

Panel: The Current State of Recycling: Local and Global Perspectives, 4-5 p.m. Gist Hall 225
This panel discussion brings together experts in the fields of recycling and zero waste to shed light on the current state of recycling. Attendees can share in the discourse on the global and local issues shaping the recycling industry, on what materials are currently recyclable, and what steps we must take to see a future without waste.
Panelists include Tedd Ward, Director of the Del Norte Solid Waste Management Authority; Emily Benvie, Environmental Programs Manager for the City of Arcata; Sintana Vergara, Professor in Environmental Resources Engineering; Julie Stewart, Secretary for Humboldt Surfrider; Sarai Lucarelli, Zero Waste Humboldt Board Member; Megan Tolbert, HSU Grounds & Recycling Coordinator; and Maureen Hart, Environmental Consultant. The moderator is Morgan King, HSU Climate Action Analyst.

Documentary screening and discussion: Albatross, 6 p.m., Science B 133
Albatross (97 minutes) is a powerfully moving love story that brings viewers together into a shared space of connection and reverence. On one of the remotest islands on our planet, tens of thousands of baby albatrosses lie dead on the ground, their bodies filled with plastic. Returning to the island over several years, the Albatross team witnessed the cycles of life and death of these birds as a multi-layered metaphor for our times. The viewer will experience stunning juxtapositions of beauty and horror, destruction and renewal, grief and joy, birth and death, coming out the other side with their heart broken open and their worldview shifted. Stepping outside the stylistic templates of traditional environmental or documentary films, Albatross takes viewers on a guided tour into the depths of their own spirits, delivering a profound message of reverence and love that is already reaching an audience of millions of people around the world.

Thursday | November 8
Bicycle Learning Center Workshop and Discussion, 5-6 p.m., CCAT
People choose to cycle for many reasons. Some enjoy the health benefits, or emotional satisfaction. Some cycle because they have no other transportation, or to protest automobiles, and many other reasons. Regardless, cycling in an automobile dominated world indeed reduces waste, from petrol to rubber— bicycles are far less resource intensive than cars. Accordingly, cycling far less relies on a resource-exploitive capitalistic economy that we currently live in. Instead, the action of bicycling empowers individuals and promotes self-reliance. Join Bicycle Learning Center mechanics as we discuss these topics regarding cycling as action to reduce resources, waste, and reliance on capitalism.

Keynote: Sustainability Approached by CSU Chico’s Associated Students, 6:30-7:30 p.m., Founders Hall 118
Join Maggie Scarpa and Jared Geiser as they talk about the efforts they have taken within Chico State’s Associated Students to move towards zero waste.

Friday | November 9
Clothing Swap, noon-3 p.m., CCAT
Join us for a clothing swap in conjunction with CCAT’s Volunteer Friday. All clothes are free, and you do not need to bring clothes to take clothes!

Tinker Time, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., UC Quad
A series of hands-on, interactive, DIY, and zero waste activities all day on the UC Quad, hosted by The Sanctuary, the BLC, CCAT, Cooperation Humboldt, and more!

HSU Initiatives Support Record Graduation Rates

October 23, 2018 - 11:23am
HSU’s Class of 2018 broke new records, with graduation rates for first-time and transfer students hitting all-time highs. The progress was thanks in part to several initiatives designed to support student success.

According to preliminary data, HSU’s four-year graduation rate for first-time freshmen has increased from 14.5 percent in 2015 to 21.9 percent in 2018 (a 51 percent increase). The six-year graduation rate for first-time freshmen has increased from 45.6 percent in 2015 to 51.8 percent in 2018 (a 14 percent increase). The two-year graduation rate for transfer students has increased from 26.3 percent in 2015 to 37.8 percent in 2018 (a 44 percent increase).

HSU’s success reflects efforts under the California State University system’s Graduation Initiative 2025. The goals of this system-wide initiative are to increase graduation rates while reducing opportunity gaps for traditionally underrepresented students, first-generation students, and Pell recipients.

“We invested strategically in academic and social resources—two factors that can affect students’ success at Humboldt State,” says Interim Vice Provost Rock Braithwaite.

To address retention and graduation, the University has undertaken several efforts.

This has included hiring more tenure-line faculty. Over the last three years, 32 tenure-track faculty have been hired, and the student-faculty ratio has dropped from 22:1 to 20:1. Starting this year, HSU plans to hire 20 new faculty members thanks to more than $1.5 million of funding from GI 2025 and the University, according to Provost Alex Enyedi.

In addition, students were offered more sections of courses that are repeated often, have low rates of success, or are in high demand. GI 2025 funds helped lower costs for summer bottleneck courses students needed to graduate.

The University also focused on: conducting a course audit and alert campaign for students on the cusp of graduation; reducing the number of students on academic probation through academic advising and peer mentoring; contacting students who are nearing graduation and encouraged them to enroll and finish; improving student orientation and increasing student and family engagement.

“We’ve made progress, and there’s more to be done. We’re actively working to improve students’ experience at all stages of their college career so they can stay on track for graduation,” says Braithwaite.

He says that future efforts to address retention and graduation at HSU include:

Enhancing first-year experiences through learning communities such as the Klamath Connection, which is intended to increase social and academic support mechanisms that facilitate retention.

Improving student support through the peer mentoring program known as Retention through Academic Mentoring Program (RAMP),

Diversity and equity training for faculty, staff, and administrators through collaborative partnerships between Office of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion and Center for Teaching and Learning.

Providing more Supplemental Instruction sections, which are paired with STEM courses.

For more information about GI 2025 and enrollment planning, visit HSU’s GI 2025 website and the Strategic Enrollment Management website.

20th Annual Campus Dialogue on Race

October 18, 2018 - 4:41pm
From a discussion on cultural appropriation to a workshop on data-informed conversations of diversity, equity, and inclusion, Humboldt State’s 20th annual Campus and Community Dialogue on Race (CDOR), starting Saturday, Oct. 27, is a weeklong series of programs on racial justice and its intersections with oppression and resistance.

CDOR started in 1998, spurred by President Bill Clinton’s Initiative on Race. Over the years, HSU has committed to creating safe spaces for this dialogue, which provides an opportunity for students, faculty, staff, and the community to experience workshops, keynote speakers, poster sessions, panel discussions, and conversations exploring race.

The program’s mission is to promote and facilitate social and environmental change by engaging a diverse range of individuals, communities, and viewpoints to explore the impact of racism and its intersections with all forms of oppression.

The keynote speaker is Denice Frohman, an award-winning queer Latinx poet, educator, and performer. Born and raised in New York City, she is a CantoMundo Fellow, Women of the World Poetry Slam Champion, 2014 National Association of Latino Arts & Cultures Fund for the Arts grant recipient, 2013 Hispanic Choice Award winner, and 2012 Leeway Transformation Award recipient. Her work has been commissioned by ESPN and Twitter and appears in Women of Resistance: Poems for a new Feminism, Nepantla: An Anthology for Queer Poets of Color, The Acentos Review, Winter Tangerine, and more. Her poems have gone viral with over 7.5 million views online and have been featured on Upworthy, Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, mitú, and Refinery29.

This event is supported and coordinated by HSU students, staff, and faculty, as well as: Associated Students, Departments of Critical Race, Gender, & Sexuality Studies, English, Social Work, and Sociology, Cultural Centers for Academic Excellence, Division of Student Affairs, Housing, HSI-STEM, MultiCultural Center, Office of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, Office of Student Life, University Library, Equity Alliance of the North Coast, and Arcata Main Street.

Here are a few highlights. For the full list of events and details, see the Events Calendar.

Saturday, Oct. 27

Diversity Day at Farmers Market
9 a.m. – 1 p.m., Arcata Plaza
WE ARE YOUR COMMUNITY is a poster campaign created by masters in Social Work students Erin Youngblood-Smith and Amy Mathieson with the aim of bridging the gap between the local community and students of color. The project seeks to help people in Humboldt County better understand the experiences of students of color on and off campus. There will be tabling by a variety of local and campus organizations on the Plaza during farmers market to engage with the community on the subject of diversity.

Monday, Oct. 29

Kick off on the Quad!
11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Stop by the Quad to pick up Campus Dialogue On Race event schedules and to hear about upcoming workshops!

Cultural Appropriation VS. Appreciation Workshop
11 – 11:50 a.m., Goodwin Forum (Nelson Hall East 102)
Presenters will highlight the realities and experiences of cultural appropriation that have been witnessed throughout our lives. They will discuss the effects of appropriation within our personal stories and narrative because there is never just one story.
Presenters: Tania Cubas & Deema Hindawi, Women’s Resource Center & MultiCultural Center

Featured Speaker Raina León
Poetry Readings/Q & As and Workshops
Raina León is an Associate Professor of the Single Subject Credential Program – English at Saint Mary’s College of California. She is currently a teaching artist in residence at the Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco, and is part of College of the Redwood’s Visiting Writers Series. She will host two readings followed by Q&A;sessions and generative creative writing prompts.

·“Say Her Name!”: Poetry of Witness and Resistance
2– 3 p.m., Goodwin Forum (Nelson Hall East 102)
Poet and educator Raina J. León will offer a short selection of poetry generated from a place of witness and resistance in these times of increased tumult, marginalization, and violence against people of color.

·Love and Happiness as Revolution
3 – 4 p.m., Goodwin Forum (Nelson Hall East 102)
Raina J. León will offer a short selection of poetry that focuses on joy, life, and birth as a political act. She will read new poems, offer a Q&A;, and then provide generative writing prompts that focus on generational joy, lineage, and legacy.

Loving the Skin I’m In: My Story
3:30 – 4:30 p.m., Nelson Hall East Room 106
Sixth-grade African-American student Sadie Shelmire will share her experience as a student of color in the Arcata School District. She will give advice to local teachers and administrators on how they can be more welcoming, supportive, and inclusive.
Presenters: Sadie Makayla-Tiye Shelmire, 6th grader, Sunnybrae Middle School &
Tay D. Triggs, HSU administrator

Keynote Speaker Denice Frohman
5 – 6:30 p.m., Kate Buchanan Room
Existencia es Resistencia – Existence is Resistance
Denice Frohman is an award-winning poet, educator, performer, and speaker (bio above).

Tuesday, Oct. 30
Embodied Liberation: Somatic Tools for Metabolizing White Fragility Workshop
10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., Goodwin Forum (Nelson Hall East 102)
Presenters will draw from the studies and writing of Resmaa Menakem, Robin DiAngelo and Generative Somatics (body-centered healing) to provide tools for white bodies to metabolize their false sense of fragility around race-related topics.
Presenters: Shanti Belaustegui Pockell and Samantha Stone

A Sense of Belonging – Obstacles Hindering Latinx Students in College Campuses
4 – 5 p.m., Library Fishbowl (Room 209)
Talk about the Mexican American/Latinx/Hispanic experience in the United States and how it ties to the obstacles one faces in the community and at home.
Presenters: Abdel Amador, HSU Residential Life

Wednesday, Oct. 31

Pedagogy of the Unwoke Workshop 10 a.m. – Noon, Goodwin Forum (Nelson Hall East 102) This participatory workshop will provide ideas to enter conversations about racial injustice without blame, shame or guilt. We will also explore how to use restorative approaches to address structural racism in interpersonal interactions. Presenters: Ron White and Iva Dubyak, Humboldt Area Foundation

Disrupting Bias 101 Workshop
Noon – 2 p.m., TBD (off-campus location to be confirmed)
This workshop will address the first two of four dimensions of racism defined as internalized, interpersonal, institutional, and structural (or systemic). Participants will learn common language used to discuss racial equity, and examine how living in a culture dominated by messages of white superiority impacts how we see ourselves and how we consciously and unconsciously see and interact with others.
Presenters: Cori Jara, Lead Case Manager, McKinleyville Family Resource Center; Meridith Oram, Community Development Specialist, Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, HSU

Thursday, Nov. 1

Data Informed Conversation of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Workshop 1 – 2 p.m., Goodwin Forum (Nelson Hall East 102) This presentation will highlight the importance of data-informed conversations of diversity, equity, and inclusion. By exploring the historical context of diversity data collection and original intent, we can unlock the mysteries of why institutions collect diversity data in the way that they do and how modern behavioral researchers can use those data to better understand their institution. Presenter: Michael Le, Office of Institutional Effectiveness

Featured Speaker Workshop with Rev. Alvin Herring
3 – 4 p.m., Kate Buchanan Room
Alvin Herring will host a community organizing workshop. Herring is the Executive Director of Faith in Action, formerly PICO National Network, an international network of 39 federations and local groups in 21 states and 3 countries.

2018 Distinguished Alumni Speaker
Eliberto “Eddie” Ramos: “Life and Work Alterations: The Journey from Gang Culture to Inmate Advocate”
4 – 6 p.m., Goodwin Forum (Nelson Hall East 102)
Eliberto “Eddie” Ramos (‘99, Sociology) is a Psychiatric Social Worker for Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health Court Linkage Program within superior courts. He also worked for the R.M. Pyles Boys Camp, a wilderness camp promoting leadership and character development for low-income, disadvantaged boys. Ramos, who attended the camp as a youth, is now on the board of directors. Following the talk will be a Q& Asession and a meet & greet with snacks and refreshments.

Featured Speaker Presentation with Rev. Alvin Herring
5 – 6 p.m., Kate Buchanan Room
Rev. Alvin Herring worked as the Director of Racial Equity and Community Engagement for the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, the fifth largest foundation in the world. While serving in this role, he advanced racial justice by ensuring groups leading racial justice work had resources to propel their campaigns and initiatives. Rev. Herring is the Executive Director of Faith in Action, formerly PICO National Network.

Friday, Nov. 2

Issues in ADPI Communities Workshop
11 a.m. – 1 p.m., Goodwin Forum (Nelson Hall East 102)
Presented by the Asian Desi Pacific Islander Collective (ADPIC), this workshop discusses issues facing Asian, Desi, and Pacific Islander (ADPI) community and students, specifically underrepresented and marginalized populations, addressing institutional changes to advance the success and voices of these people.

5 – 8 p.m., Kate Buchanan Room
In Spike Lee’s new film based on real events, Ron Stallworth, an African-American police officer in Colorado, successfully infiltrates the local Ku Klux Klan. A discussion will be facilitated by Ramona Bell, Department of Critical Race, Gender, & Sexuality Studies (CRGS). This event is sponsored by the Office of Student Life.
Presenter: CRGS Professor Ramona Bell

Dia de los Muertos Dance
7 p.m. – Midnight, Arcata Veterans Hall, 1425 J Street, Arcata
Latinx Center for Academic Excellent presents the first annual dance event! All ages welcome! $8 in advance, $10 at the door. Food available for purchase. Proceeds from food and ticket sales will help fund LCAE’s future events and cultural graduation in May 2019.
For more information,, or call 707.826.4530

HSU, CSU System Graduation Rates Reach All-time Highs

October 18, 2018 - 11:47am
Efforts to support students through the Graduation Initiative 2025 have led to record levels of student achievement at Humboldt State University.

A report released by the California State University system on Oct. 17 shows that Humboldt State has made good progress on five out of the six key measures for the initiative. Another measure shows limited improvement.

Statewide in the CSU system, graduation rates for first-time freshmen and transfer students reached all-time highs and equity gaps between students from historically underserved communities and other students narrowed.

“Ensuring the success of every student continues to be foundational to the work underway at every California State University campus,” says CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White. “I am extremely proud of the remarkable efforts and commitment from students, faculty and staff to achieve these gains. The CSU continues to be the key to a bright future for California and for those who earn high-quality college degrees here. These data demonstrate that sustained investment in the CSU is producing good results, and with additional financial support from the state, we can maintain this positive trajectory for students.”

The preliminary data released for Humboldt State show that since the launch of Graduation Initiative 2025:
· The four-year graduation rate for first-time freshmen has increased from 14.5 percent in 2015 to 21.9 percent in 2018 (a 51 percent increase). That is an all-time high for HSU.
· The six-year graduation rate for first-time freshmen has increased from 45.6 percent in 2015 to 51.8 percent in 2018 (a 14 percent increase).
· The two-year graduation rate for transfer students has increased from 26.3 percent in 2015 to 37.8 percent in 2018 (a 44 percent increase).
· The four-year graduation rate for transfer students has increased from 68.5 percent in 2015 to 75.4 percent in 2018 (a 10 percent increase).

Additionally, the 2018 graduation rates indicate some progress on closing persistent equity gaps at Humboldt State:
· The graduation rate gap between Pell-eligible students and their peers narrowed from 13.4 percent in 2017 to 10.3 percent in 2018 (a 23 percent decrease).
· However, the six-year graduation rate gap between underrepresented students of color and their peers increased from 10.6 percent in 2017 to 13.7 percent in 2018 (a 29 percent increase). While the graduation rates for underrepresented students of color increased at HSU, graduation rates for other students increased at an even higher rate, increasing the gap.

The preliminary data released for the whole CSU system shows that since the launch of Graduation Initiative 2025:
· The four-year graduation rate for first-time freshmen has increased from 19.2 percent in 2015 to 25.4 percent in 2018 (a 32 percent increase).
· The six-year graduation rate for first-time freshmen has increased from 57 percent in 2015 to 61.1 percent in 2018 (a 7 percent increase).
· The two-year graduation rate for transfer students has increased from 30.5 percent in 2015 to 37.6 percent in 2018 (a 23 percent increase).
· The four-year graduation rate for transfer students has increased from 72.9 percent in 2015 to 77 percent in 2018 (a 6 percent increase).

Additionally, the 2018 graduation rates indicate that the CSU system has begun to close persistent equity gaps:
· The six-year graduation rate gap between underrepresented students of color and their peers narrowed from 12.2 percent in 2017 to 10.5 percent in 2018 (a 14 percent decrease).
· The graduation rate gap between Pell-eligible students and their peers narrowed from 10.6 percent in 2017 to 9.5 percent in 2018 (a 10 percent decrease).

In 2018, CSU students earned a total of 105,431 bachelor’s degrees, representing an all-time high. The equity gaps are smaller than the previous year while the system is also enrolling a greater percentage of underrepresented and Pell eligible students.

The CSU has prioritized student success, investing in additional faculty, advisors and course sections, and allocating resources to proven student and academic support programs. Last year, CSU campuses added 4,300 new course sections opening 90,000 additional seats for students.

Graduation Initiative 2025 is a CSU initiative to ensure that all students have the opportunity to be successful and graduate according to their personal goals, positively impacting their future and producing additional graduates to power California and the nation.

For more information about Graduation Initiative 2025, visit the CSU website. A fact sheet is available here (pdf).

About the California State University

The California State University is the largest system of four-year higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, 50,800 faculty and staff and 484,000 students. Half of the CSU’s students transfer from California community colleges. Created in 1960, the mission of the CSU is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever-changing needs of California. With its commitment to quality, opportunity, and student success, the CSU is renowned for superb teaching, innovative research, and producing job-ready graduates. Each year, the CSU awards more than 110,000 degrees. One in every 20 Americans holding a college degree is a graduate of the CSU system and the CSU has 3.4 million alumni.

Humboldt State Named Among the Greenest in the Nation

October 16, 2018 - 2:05pm
Humboldt State University is once again rated among the most environmentally responsible colleges by the Princeton Review, an education services company, in partnership with the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education and ecoAmerica.

Humboldt State University.

HSU has been listed as a Green College several times, most recently in 2016.

The Princeton Review’s Guide to 399 Green Colleges is designed to aid prospective college students and their families in researching institutions that demonstrate a commitment to sustainability through academic offerings, campus policies, initiatives, activities and career preparation for students.

Franek noted that college applicants and their parents are increasingly concerned about the environment and sustainability issues. Among nearly 11,000 teens and parents, The Princeton Review surveyed earlier this year for its 2018 “College Hopes & Worries Survey,” 63 percent overall said having information about a college’s commitment to the environment would influence their decision to apply to or attend the school. The full survey report is available here.

As a long-time green campus, Humboldt State incorporates sustainability across a broad series of academic and service learning disciplines, coupled with many student volunteer programs. In its 2015 Strategic Plan, HSU calls for the University community to “Serve as effective stewards of the natural and built environment and the university’s resources with a focus on sustainability.”
Other campus sustainability efforts highlight student ingenuity, like the student-led Campus Center for Appropriate Technology and the Humboldt Energy Independence Fund, which supports student-designed energy-efficiency upgrades across campus.

Humboldt State University also recently received a Gold Rating in STARS—Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System—a nationwide program that evaluates an institution’s programs and practices in sustainability. The University also completed a Climate Action Plan, a document designed to guide the University’s efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions.

A full list of Green Colleges is available at

For more information visit HSU’s sustainability page.

HSU Presents Evil Dead The Musical

October 12, 2018 - 9:58am
HSU’s Theatre, Film and Dance Department presents Evil Dead The Musical, a splattery horror-comedy opening Friday, Oct. 26.

The Canadian rock musical stage play, with book and lyrics by George Reinblatt and music by Frank Cipolla, Christopher Bond, Melissa Morris and George Reinblatt, is based on the Evil Dead film series. Originally adapted in 2003, it instantly became a hit and eventually moved on to an off-Broadway run in 2006. Many regional productions of the show have been performed all over the world. Critics praised the show and one critic for The New York Times said the musical “wants to be the next The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and it just may succeed.”

From left: Elizabeth Whittemore as Cheryl, William English III as Ash, Shawn Wagner as Linda.
The hilarious script follows five hormonal college students who go to an abandoned cabin in the woods for a short vacation. They discover a 13th-century book of the dead, accidentally play an audiotape of demon-summoning words, and are soon being possessed, one at a time, by evil forces. It’s all up to Ash (a housewares employee turned demon-killing hero) and his trusty chainsaw to save the day. Limbs are dismembered. Blood flies. (It’s the only show with a “Splatter Zone”—a section of the audience that gets covered in fake blood!) Demons tell bad jokes … and all to music.

The production is directed by Associate Professor Rae Robison, who loves horror—the first book she read in a single weekend (at age 10) was Stephen King’s Carrie.

“I’m a sucker for a good scare,” she says. “But I also love comedy and the Evil Dead movies have a terrific combination of both. They’re campy, hilarious, not-clean, not-family-friendly fun.

“What is this play about? It’s about laughing for about two hours and seeing an amazing group of actors and designers knocking your socks off. There is literally no reason to do this other than a really entertaining evening where you laugh, gasp, and love every minute in the theater.”

Evil Dead The Musical has doo-wop, tangos, and bits of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller”. Fans of horror will love how many Deadites get killed in so many ways (thanks to fight choreographer Caroline McFarland).

The production includes adult language, lots of killing of the undead, and enough blood to warrant the purchase of rain ponchos for audience members in the first rows.

The production includes 14 cast members who “are just pouring their hearts into this,” Robison says. “Not to mention the stage designers and technicians who are so stoked about this show and what we’re creating.” Scenic design is by Raymond Gutierrez, costume design by Rae Robison, sound design by Kai Lassen, lighting design by Percival Ferrugia, properties design by Emma Lubin and make-up design by Amy Beltran. Musical Director is Camille Borrowdale and the production will be stage managed by Grady Moore.

Evil Dead The Musical, opens Friday, Oct. 26 at 7:30 p.m., and is the first fully staged production of the 2018-19 Season at HSU. The run continues Oct. 27, Nov. 1, 2, 3 at 7:30 p.m. in the Gist Hall Theatre on campus. There will be two matinee performances beginning at 2 p.m. on Sundays, Oct. 28 and Nov. 4. General admission is $15. Students and seniors are $10. Not intended for children. Lot parking is free on weekends. For tickets, please call 707.826.3928 or visit the Center Arts website. For more information, call 707.826.3566.

From left: Shawn Wagner as Linda, Elizabeth Whittemore as Cheryl (above), William English III as Ash.

25th Annual Indigenous Peoples Week at HSU

October 5, 2018 - 11:56am

Humboldt State University American Indian faculty, staff, and students will host the 25th Annual Indigenous Peoples Week October 8-12. HSU events and activities are focused on Indigenous issues, ideologies, and methods.

“Sing Our Rivers Red” is a traveling earring exhibit at the Goudi’ni Gallery aimed at raising awareness of missing and murdered indigenous women — an issue highlighted during Indigenous Peoples Week.

Indigenous Peoples Week challenges the idea that Christopher Columbus “discovered” America and a reminder of the atrocities and injustices against Natives of the Americas. HSU’s effort to find an alternative celebration to Columbus Day across the California State University system has been part of a nationwide movement. In 1992, Berkeley, California, became the first U.S. city to celebrate Indigenous People’s Day instead of Columbus Day. As of 2017, nearly 60 cities across the country have embraced Indigenous Peoples Day, according to Time.

Monday, Oct. 8

Noon, UC Quad
IPW Kickoff

3:30 – 4:30 p.m., Goudi’ni Gallery
Honoring Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women
Indigenous students, faculty, staff will be wearing red

5 – 7 p.m., Native Forum (BSS 162)
“Finding Dawn” screening and discussion
Acclaimed Métis filmmaker Christine Welsh puts a human face on a national tragedy – the epidemic of missing or murdered Indigenous women in Canada. Discussion led by Native American Studies faculty.

Tuesday, Oct. 9

10 a.m., KRFH (105 FM)
Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women student panel discussion

3 – 5 p.m., Native Forum (BSS 162)
“More Than a Word” documentary and discussion
This documentary analyzes the Washington, D.C., football team and their use of the derogatory term R*dskins. Using interviews from both those in favor of changing the name and those against, “More Than A Word” presents a deeper analysis of the many issues surrounding the team’s name. It also examines the history of Native American cultural appropriation. Discussion led by ITEPP staff.

Wednesday, Oct. 10

10 a.m. – 1 p.m., Goudi’ni Gallery
“Sing Our Rivers Red” Sewing Circle
The Sing Our Rivers Red (SORR) is a traveling earring exhibit aimed at bringing awareness to the epidemic of missing and murdered indigenous women and colonial gender-based violence in the United States and Canada. SORR events strive to raise consciousness, unite ideas, and demand action for Indigenous women, girls, Two Spirit people who have been murdered or gone missing, tortured, raped, trafficked, and assaulted, and who have not had the proper attention or justice. Participants will have an opportunity to sew donated earrings onto a blanket for the next phase of this traveling exhibit.

Noon – 1 p.m., Brero House 93
Indian Teacher and Educational Personnel Program (ITEPP) Open House

5 – 6 p.m., Native Forum (BSS 162)
Native American Rangelands
Guest lecture by Delane Atcitty, Director Indian Nations Conservation Alliance

Thursday, Oct. 11
1 – 4 p.m., Goudi’ni Gallery
“Sing Our Rivers Red” Sewing Circle (description above)

4 – 5:30 p.m., Native Forum (BSS 162)
Dancing on Tears: Tribal Resilience
Discussion with Vincent Feliz, Kishan Lara-Cooper (Child Development), and Ellen Colegrove (Child Development)

5:30 – 7:30 p.m., Native Forum (BSS 162)
“The Eagle and the Condor”
Film screening and discussion with Rain Marshall, J.D.

7 p.m., KHSU
“Thursday Night Talk – Race Beat”

Friday, Oct. 12

Noon – 1 p.m., Walter Warren House #38
Indian Natural Resources, Science & Engineering Program (INRSEP) Open House

12:30 – 1:30 p.m., Goudi’ni Gallery
Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women
Database and mapping with Allie Hostler and Annita Luchessi

$300K Grant to Support HSU Sexualized Violence Prevention Efforts

October 5, 2018 - 9:40am

HSU was recently awarded a $300,000 Department of Justice grant to continue supporting the student-led CHECK IT movement and other award-winning efforts to prevent and respond to incidents of sexualized violence.

First year students in HSU’s new learning community, Students for Violence Prevention, share a common interest in non-violence and social justice. The program grew out of CheckIT, which promotes campus consent culture and bystander intervention.

HSU was one of 57 campuses selected by the DOJ to receive a total of $18 million in violence prevention funding. The grant marks a continuation of funding awarded in 2012 and 2015 that allowed the University to continue and expand its programs.

As part of the new round of funding and recognition for its efforts, HSU has been asked to present at national trainings about off-campus partnerships and creating a campus community dedicated to consent and violence prevention.

<<Related Stories: Campus Residence Halls Promote Consent Culture | White House Honors CHECK IT Student | Violence Prevention Recognized as Model >>

The latest grant will focus on several areas:
• Supporting survivors of sexual assault, intimate partner violence, and stalking
• Increasing options for accountability for survivors
• Engaging a diverse community in the work of HSU’s Sexual Assault Prevention Committee
• Increasing the capacity of HSU students to intervene when they witness potential moments of harm
• Mentoring a core group of male leaders of fraternities and sports teams to model consent-centered behavior and position themselves as active bystanders to disrupt harm
• Increasing the capacity of community members to recognize victim blaming and acts of retaliation
• Developing and implementing a transition plan to sustain the work on campus beyond the life of the grant.

The previous round of grant funding helped support innovations in HSU’s sexual violence prevention programs, led by CHECK IT.

Launched in 2014 by students from across the University, CHECK IT empowers students to challenge and disrupt harm happening in communities when they witness potential moments of sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking. It provides the campus community with multiple tools for intervening in ways that are realistic and match people’s unique personalities, identities, and communication styles.
CHECK IT was recognized by the White House in 2016 for its accomplishments as a student-led violence prevention group.

HSU became one of the nation’s first universities to have residence halls dedicated to preventing sexualized violence and supporting survivors and their allies. Last year, a campus living community was launched, making HSU one of the nation’s first universities to have residence halls dedicated to preventing sexualized violence and supporting survivors and their allies.

This fall, a new learning community called Students for Violence Prevention offers first-year students from multiple disciplines interested in non-violence and social justice an opportunity to learn together. Learning communities improve students’ sense of belonging and community, and studies show they help improve retention and academic success.

The grant will also help HSU continue its history of partnering with community agencies that are focused on supporting survivors of sexual assault, intimate partner violence, and stalking. Collaborations like this bring expertise and resources to the campus community.

HSU will receive $300,000 over three years and will work closely with the North Coast Rape Crisis Team, the Arcata Police Department, and the Humboldt County District Attorney’s office. The program supports activities that develop campus-based coordinated responses that include health providers, housing officials, administrators, student leaders, UPD, Greek Council, athletics, student clubs, Associated Students, the Title IX coordinator, the Office of Student Conduct, and the new Campus Advocate Team.

Campus and Local Resources
• The North Coast Rape Crisis Team 24-Hour hotline: 707.445.2881.
• The Humboldt Domestic Violence Services 24-hour hotline: 707.443.6042.
• Stop Rape: Response and Prevention

Where We Sit and How Often We Sit There: Student Software Shows Library Seating Patterns

October 4, 2018 - 9:22am

Behind recent changes and renovations in the HSU Library have been stacks on stacks of data.

To calculate how (and how often) people used space, library staff manually tallied data based on reams of surveys filled out by students and examined stacks of floor and furniture maps.

Seeking help to streamline the process, Library Dean Cyril Oberlander and Information Technology Services compiled a team in 2017, hiring Computer Science majors Sam Alston, Eric Mott, and Ben Miller. In one semester, they launched SpaceUse, open source software designed to record and seating information on a tablet and quickly produce reports on the data.

Miller and Mott are trying to expand its use among other institutions. They also hope to commercialize the software and expand its features.

Miller says the experience provided insight on business operations and how customers use a facility, as well as programming experience. “The project gave me the abilities and confidence to deliver a project that back in February I couldn’t have imagined. The big surprise to me was how relevant this data is for the library to operate to its full potential and grow.”

When Oberlander began to envision changes to the library, expanding open spaces and creating a more inclusive and welcoming space, he knew he’d need data to guide the process. Since 2015, the library has been conducting space use surveys, walking all three floors of the library, observing where people are sitting, the type of furniture and space they’re in, and whether they were studying on their own or collaboratively.

These seating use surveys helped determine what types of furniture made the most sense in certain parts of the library: They discovered, for example, that couches in the Library Café were used as infrequently as the microfilm readers, so they were replaced with much more popular café tables. But those surveys were paper-intensive and time consuming, and comparing the results was arduous.

Now with SpaceUse, users can upload floor plans for any building and designate areas and rooms they’d like to survey. Then, they can place furniture on the plan, noting its shape, how many seats it has, and other features. As a surveyor walks around the Library, they can note how many people are using each piece of furniture on the plan, and even indicate where furniture has been moved to reveal patterns of preference – data that informs design decisions.

Oberlander says the software has made it much faster to survey seating—between 10 and 30 minutes, now, and surveyors are gathering more specific data. Students and staff surveyors are excited to use the software to conduct the surveys, as well as, while the recording function has improved efficiency, it’s the results that count.

“The reporting function is the bread and butter of this software,” Miller says. Users can select a survey from any point in time, and see an average population, percentage peaks, and more for any area or piece of furniture. They can also compare to other points in time. This has given Oberlander the ability to quickly adapt spaces for students’ needs. “How we shape the library space focuses on how students learn best and we now have a clear picture of where we can enhance their learning environment,” he says.

President Rossbacher to Retire From CSU

October 1, 2018 - 10:50am

Lisa A. Rossbacher, who has served as President of Humboldt State University since 2014, announced today that she will retire from the California State University system after the 2018-19 academic year.

In a message to the HSU community, President Rossbacher said that she had enjoyed serving as president, but the timing was right to move to the next stage of her career. She had discussed her plans over the summer with CSU Chancellor Timothy White.

“This was not an easy decision, as I very much enjoy being part of this campus community,” she wrote. “I am inspired each day by our amazing students and by the commitment of our faculty and staff.”

President Rossbacher also used her message to highlight some areas of recent success for the University, including: a sustainable budget, improved graduation rates, investment in student support programs, efforts related to diversity and equity, and additional tenure-line faculty positions.

CSU Chancellor Timothy White praised President Rossbacher for her commitment and achievements at HSU.

“While working in one of the CSU’s most unique environments, President Rossbacher’s long-standing commitment to improving student success was always apparent,” White said. “She has led the campus to steady growth in graduation rates, and I am pleased to say that Humboldt State is graduating students at record numbers. Her leadership of a campus-wide collaborative effort also resulted in recent reaccreditation from the WASC Senior College and University Commission. To eliminate a persistent structural deficit in the campus budget, she made difficult but necessary decisions in order to put HSU on a solid path. I commend and thank President Rossbacher for her leadership at HSU, her previous service as a member of the faculty and administration at Cal Poly Pomona, and her dedication to the CSU mission.”

The CSU will soon launch a national search for President Rossbacher’s successor. Under university policy, the chairman of the CSU Trustees, Adam Day, and Chancellor Timothy White will select a committee made up of various campus stakeholders who will be publicly announced at a later date. Campus and community input will be sought in an open forum held on campus.

During the remainder of 2018-19, President Rossbacher says she will focus on goals she outlined during her Fall Welcome. These include the ongoing initiatives related to student success, strengthening a welcoming and supportive community for HSU’s growing diversity, achieving a balanced budget, and addressing the recommendations from the recent review by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.

During her time at HSU, President Rossbacher has focused on promoting student success, developing a sustainable budget, and aligning programs with the core mission of the University. She led development of the 2015-20 strategic plan, which includes four overriding goals: (1) supporting student success, (2) developing a welcoming and safe environment for diverse populations, (3) expanding partnerships with local communities, and (4) being a good steward of resources, including fiscal, physical, and intellectual resources.

President Rossbacher has been actively engaged in the Equity Alliance of the North Coast and Equity Arcata, both of which bring together multiple stakeholders to create a community that is welcoming and supportive of diversity and inclusion. She also re-instituted the University’s Native American Advisory Council and this year began serving as the presidential liaison to the CSU’s Native American Initiative.

Some successes during her presidency include:

Four-year graduation rates at HSU reached an all-time high of 21 percent, while six-year graduation rates increased to 52 percent.

<li>HSU’s accreditation was reaffirmed for an eight-year period by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.</li>

<li>A sustainable budget plan was developed and the University is on track to have a balanced budget for the 2019-20 academic year. This is a reversal from four years ago, when the University had been running deficits and was on the verge of exhausting its operating reserve fund. A modest operating reserve fund and capital reserve fund have now been created. Under new CSU guidelines, campuses are expected to build capital reserves so that they can contribute funds to build new facilities.</li>

<li>Significant investments were made in new tenure-line faculty, and the student-to-faculty ratio has gone from 22:1 to 20:1.</li>

<li>Important investments were made in student support programs, including the Cultural Centers for Academic Excellence, the RAMP student mentor program, advising, and mental health programs.</li>

<li>New place-based learning communities were created to support students in the sciences and natural resources. Based on initial success in persistence and other factors, new learning communities have recently launched for other students, including those who are undecided on a major.</li>

<li>New grants for research and sponsored programs reached over $23 million annually. HSU researchers are currently leading hundreds of grant-funded projects with a total value of more than $86 million.</li>

<li>HSU earned a gold rating for its sustainability efforts from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, highlighting the University’s role as a higher education leader in sustainability.</li>

<li>Faculty and students from HSU provided statewide leadership in conducting research, making policy recommendations, and implementing local programs to address student food and housing insecurity.</li>

President Rossbacher is the seventh president of Humboldt State University. She came to HSU after serving as president of Southern Polytechnic State University in Georgia, and had previously served as a faculty member and administrator at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, Whittier College, and Dickinson College. She was the first woman geologist to become a university president in North America.

President Rossbacher graduated from Dickinson College with a degree in Geology, received master’s degrees from the State University of New York at Binghamton (now Binghamton University) and Princeton University, and earned her Ph.D. in Geological and Geophysical Sciences at Princeton University. She has authored books on geology, science, and the media. Her research interests focus on the role of water and water ice on the planet Mars, and in 1984, she was a finalist in NASA’s astronaut selection process.

HSU Celebrates 30 Years of the Patricia D. &amp; William B. Smullin Scholarship

September 28, 2018 - 4:14pm

Since 1988, the Patricia D. & William B. Smullin Scholarship has supported talented HSU students from North Coast high schools who embody a creative and innovative spirit.

The scholarship was created with a gift of $100,000 from William Smullin. During the past three decades, it has provided almost $650,000 to HSU students, allowing them to focus on earning their college degrees. The scholarship has provided 206 awards to 110 students, 32 of whom have received support for all four years. The scholarship provides about 10 awards annually at an average of $5,000 per student, a significant boost for talented scholars pursuing their dreams.

In celebration of the Smullin Scholarship’s 30th anniversary, current and former recipients shared their thoughts about how it shaped their careers and their plans for the future.

The Smullin Scholarship allowed me to pay for so many of the necessary expenses that come with gaining a higher education. I studied hard, got a degree in cellular and molecular biology with a minor in chemistry. I continued my education at the UCLA School of Dentistry and graduated at the top of my class. I came back to Arcata, and now own one of the largest dental practices in the county. If it hadn’t been for the Smullin Scholarship, I wouldn’t be where I am today—thank you so much!

Dr. Trish Barsanti (‘03, Biology and Chemistry)

_Graduating college has been a dream of mine ever since I was little. The Smullin Scholarship has allowed me to earn a college degree in computer science and a minor in applied mathematics at Humboldt State University. I am truly thankful for the Smullin family and their support in my schooling at Humboldt State. _

Andrew Kime (‘17, Computer Science)

Thank you for awarding me the Smullin Scholarship. I am beyond grateful for your extreme generosity. I am entering my fourth year at HSU and am double majoring in elementary education and mathematics. I am going to become a teacher because of my pure love of learning and helping others. I cannot wait for the day when I have a classroom of my own, filled with students of my own. The Smullin Scholarship helps make this possible for me.

Corabelle Esmailian (‘19, Liberal Studies and Mathematics)

I am very grateful to the Smullin Family for believing in me, my future, and my education. The next step for me is earning my master’s in finance from UC Irvine. Once I refine my skills, I plan to return to Humboldt County to offer financial advising to our close-knit community.

Kayla Davenport (‘18, Economics)

The scholarship has played an important part in getting me to where I am now. It helped me focus on my classes at HSU. I’m currently pursuing a Ph.D. at Ohio State University. I hope to run a research program studying viral diseases that impact important global crops, thus helping to increase food security in the U.S. and other countries.

Brian Hodge (‘14, Botany and Biology)

Thank you, Smullin Family for making it possible for me to attend college. Your scholarship has been one of the highest honors I have ever received and I’m so thankful for you. With your help, I have been able to study the major of my dreams, business administration, with an emphasis in management—something I’m truly passionate about. I would not be where I stand today if it wasn’t for you.

Johali Lopez (‘19, Business Administration)

_I am sincerely grateful for having been a recipient of the Smullin scholarship. I obtained a bachelor’s degree in psychology in 2016 and graduated this May with a master’s degree in psychology (developmental psychopathology emphasis) from Humboldt State University. As a low-income, first-generation college student the scholarship helped immensely with the financial burden of higher education. _

Irene Gonzalez-Herrera (‘16, Psychology)

The Patricia D. & William B. Smullin Foundation, which has been in operation since 1990, seeks to help educate the people of Northern California and Southern Oregon through gifts to higher education and to contribute to their health through gifts to service providers of food, housing, and other health related needs. In addition to the Smullin Scholarship, the foundation gave $400,000 to the HSU School of Business in 2012 to develop 150 paid internships for business majors.

If you have questions about the Smullin Scholarship, or if you would like to learn about other ways to support HSU students, you can visit, email the Office of Philanthropy at, or call 707.826.5200.

Grants Provide Millions for HSU Research and Support Student Success

September 28, 2018 - 10:50am

Humboldt State faculty, staff, and student researchers were awarded $23 million in new grant funding administered and secured by HSU’s Sponsored Programs Foundation (SPF) last year.

During the 2017-18 fiscal year HSU received 183 new awards, totaling $23.4 million. SPF currently manages 491 active projects with a total award value of $86.4 million.

Grant-funded projects currently underway include:

• $300K from the Department of Justice to continue funding HSU’s Check-It program
• $1 million from the California Department of Fish & Wildlife to perform cultural resource fields surveys in numerous locations throughout the state
• $5 Million award from the California Energy Commission to design and install a renewable energy microgrid at the Arcata Airport.

The Schatz Energy research Center at Humboldt State received a $5 million grant for a microgrid at Humboldt County’s regional airport. SPF is distributing over $1.2 million this month to faculty, staff, and departments, based on their grant activity. The purpose is to provide funding that can be applied to further research and student success at HSU. These funds will be used by faculty and staff researchers to expand opportunities for students to participate in undergraduate research, help identify and pursue potential sources of research grants, engage in scholarly and creative activity, and develop their research facilities.

The funds help to support the research goals outlined in HSU’s strategic plan, which include developing a campus-wide focus on externally funded research and to foster supportive collaborations for grant writing and research. Past distributions were made in prior years, but this is the largest allocation in SPF’s history at Humboldt State University.

“Together we have built a research foundation that has achieved success by growing research opportunities and increasing the revenue and indirect distribution back to campus. At Sponsored Programs, we are proud to be part of the HSU Research Community,” says Kacie Flynn, Interim Executive Director, SPF.

SPF also administered $2.3 million in grant scholarships and stipends to HSU Students, and $1.1 million in faculty and student travel last year.
Through administered funds, SPF provided more than 1,000 job opportunities in Humboldt County last year. More than 300 students benefited from the hands-on learning experience of research while receiving a steady income, while staff and faculty earned additional pay while conducting studies in their field.

Some other examples of current programs administered through SPF include the CalSWEC grant for the Department of Social Work’s child welfare program; the TRiO grants that provide pathways to college for underrepresented high school students; and the Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) STEM grant, which supports Hispanic and low-income students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields.

*About Sponsored Programs Foundation:*

SPF is a non-profit auxiliary of the University, and it exists to administer externally funded grants and submit proposals to funding agencies on behalf of HSU.

Campus Safety Bulletin: Suspicious Individual

September 24, 2018 - 4:31pm

The University Police Department is advising the Humboldt State University community to be on the alert for a suspicious individual.

In May 2018, 22-year-old Jesus Alonso, who is not an HSU student, is suspected of being involved in an armed robbery during an illegal drug sale on campus. A criminal investigation by University Police was conducted and forwarded to the Humboldt County District Attorney’s Office for review. However, criminal charges against Alonso were not filed, based primarily on a lack of admissible evidence.

Last seen on campus Saturday night, he was asked to leave and has been warned that he is not allowed on campus. Alonso may also be armed and is known to carry a rifle underneath an outer garment, or in a bag.

He is described as 6 feet, 2 inches, 180 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. He was last seen driving a white 2016 Honda Accord with a California license plate of 7SFF594.

If you see or encounter Alonso on campus, please contact University Police immediately by dialing 911, calling (707) 826-5555 or extension 5555 from any campus phone.

Safety tips from University Police:

• Keep a safe distance from vehicles with occupants unknown to you.
• If an unknown individual talks to you, do not hesitate to walk away or call for assistance.
• Be aware of your surroundings at all times, on and off campus.
• Immediately report any suspicious persons or activities to University Police.

You may contact University Police at (707) 826-5555 or extension 5555 from any campus phone. In case of emergency, dial 911.

Five-time Grammy Nominated Pianist Ursula Oppens to Perform at HSU

September 21, 2018 - 4:13pm

Humboldt State University’s Department of Music is presenting a special solo piano recital featuring the legendary American pianist Ursula Oppens on Friday, Sept. 28, at 8 p.m. in Fulkerson Recital Hall. Her performance is part of a three-day residency at HSU, where she’ll work with students and offer a free public piano master class on Sept. 27, noon – 2 p.m. in Fulkerson Recital Hall.

“She is one of the most important living pianists in the world,” says Professor of Music Daniela Mineva. “This is a dream come true Humboldt State students.”

A five-time Grammy Award nominee, Oppens is a Distinguished Professor of Music at Brooklyn College, the CUNY Graduate Center, and on the faculty of
Mannes College/The New School. She has performed as a soloist with many of the world’s great orchestras, including the New York, Los Angeles, and London philharmonic orchestras, and the Boston, Chicago, and San Francisco symphony orchestras.

Oppens is known for championing adventurous contemporary American piano music. “It is probably safe to say that no single performer has done more for the cause of American piano music than Ursula Oppens,” wrote The Washington Post.

A legend among American pianists, she is widely admired for her original and perceptive readings of new music and her interpretations of the standard repertoire. No other artist alive today has commissioned and premiered more new works for the piano that have entered the permanent repertoire.

A prolific and critically acclaimed recording artist, Oppens most recently released a new recording of Frederic Rzewski’s “The People United Will Never Be Defeated,” nominated for a Grammy in 2016, and “Piano Songs,” a collaboration with Meredith

Earlier Grammy nominations were for “Winging It: Piano Music of John Corigliano”; “Oppens Plays Carter,” a recording of the complete piano works of Elliott Carter for Cedille Records (also was named a “Best of the Year” selection by The New York Times long-time music critic Allan Kozinn); “Piano Music of Our Time,” featuring compositions by John Adams, Carter, Julius Hemphill, and Conlon Nancarrow for the Music and Arts label; and her cult classic “The People United Will Never Be Defeated” by Frederic Rzewski on Vanguard. Oppens recently added to her extensive discography a two-piano CD for Cedille Records devoted to Visions de l’Amen of Oliver Messiaen and Debussy’s En blanc et noir performed with pianist Jerome Lowenthal.

At the start 2017-18 season, Oppens will present the New York premiere of Laura Kaminsky’s “Fantasy” for solo piano at the Bargemusic Labor Day Festival celebrating women composers and musicians. She will appear at Hayden’s Ferry Chamber Music Series in Arizona, where she will be joined by pianist Jerome Lowenthal and cellist Evan Drachman, in a program inspired by William Kapell, the great American pianist killed in a plane crash in 1953 at age 31 on his way back from a concert tour of Australia.

Oppens will travel to Bowling Green State University for the 7th Annual David Dubois Piano Competition to perform Mozart’s Concerto for Two Pianos with pianist Phillip Moll, as well as various two-piano selections by Schumann, Poulenc, Lutoslawski and two short new solo works by Samuel Adler. Her season concludes with engagements at Humboldt State University, University of Washington, and Oberlin Conservatory.

Ursula Oppens

— Solo Piano Recital
Friday, Sept. 28, 8 p.m. at Fulkerson Recital Hall. Tickets are $10 for general admission, $5 for seniors and children, and $5 for HSU students with ID.
Repertoire includes works by Stravinsky, Rachmaninoff, and Scriabin, as well as pieces written for Oppens by American-born composers Carter, Corigliano, and Nancarrow.

— Piano Master Class
September 27, noon – 2 p.m. in Fulkerson Recital Hall
Free and open to the public