San Marcos,
17:27 PM

New Academic Year Opens with 17,000 Students

By Eric Breier

The fall semester at Cal State San Marcos kicks off Monday with more than a dozen new faculty, several new programs and 17,000 students.

President Karen Haynes, the senior president in the California State University system, opened the 2018-19 academic year with her 15th CSUSM Convocation address on Thursday, Aug. 23.

Speaking to hundreds of CSUSM faculty and staff members, she highlighted recent University achievements and set the tone for the new school year.

“CSUSM is a special place. It’s not just a campus, not just a workplace, not just any university – it’s a home,” Haynes said. “For the majority of us, our work is not just a job but a calling. A calling to higher education, to solve society’s most pressing issues, to promote wellness and prosperity in our communities, and to empower students to embrace the rich and infinite possibilities that lay before them.”

Among CSUSM’s students this fall are nearly 2,500 freshmen and more than 2,000 transfer students. All enrollment figures are considered preliminary, with final totals determined after the end of the fourth week of classes.


New faculty, staff and programs

Emiliano Ayala began his appointment as dean of the College of Education, Health and Human Services in July. Ayala has served in the CSU for more than 17 years as a faculty member and a department chair, as well as in various administrative leadership positions. He came to CSUSM from Sonoma State, where he served as director of assessment and accreditation in the School of Education.

The University’s much-anticipated engineering program launches this fall with software engineering. CSUSM will add electrical engineering in fall 2019, pending final approval from the CSU Chancellor’s Office.

A stackable certificate program in EngiBeering, which explores the science and engineering behind brewing craft beer, also begins this academic year through Extended Learning.


Technology Learning Center

The University has transformed its main open computer lab, Kellogg 2000, into the new Technology Learning Center (TLC). This updated space in Kellogg Library addressed student feedback and concerns gathered from more than 550 voluntary responses that expressed a strong interest in seeing the lab upgraded with new technology and new work spaces.

The TLC project included a full remodel of the room, new furniture and new computers with large monitors. The updated design replaces the prior high-density layout with an open, efficient and flexible space that features individual technology pods, large collaborative work spaces, ergonomic and innovative seating, and curved and height-adjustable tables.

The TLC is available to CSUSM students 24 hours a day, five days a week.


Extended Learning building

Construction continues on CSUSM’s new Extended Learning building. Part of a public-private partnership, the project includes a 135,000-square-foot, six-story building, an accompanying 709-space parking garage and a pedestrian bridge over Barham Drive. The project is expected to be completed in time for the fall 2019 semester.


Weeks of Welcome

The annual Weeks of Welcome starts Aug. 24 and runs through Sept. 9. It includes dozens of free events to welcome students back to campus.

See the Weeks of Welcome calendar for a complete schedule.


20th anniversary of athletics

A year after completing the transition to NCAA Division II, the CSUSM Department of Athletics has another reason to celebrate as it marks its 20th anniversary in 2018-19.

Beginning with six sports in 1998 – men’s and women's golf, men's and women's cross country and men's and women's track and field – the program has grown to include 13 teams.


Summer snippets

Media Contact

Eric Breier, Public Affairs Specialist | Office: 760-750-7314