Besides former alumni, SDSU prez Elliot Hirshman has in mind bagging at least one personhood from the National Academy of Sciences.
  • Besides former alumni, SDSU prez Elliot Hirshman has in mind bagging at least one personhood from the National Academy of Sciences.
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They don’t know it yet, but thousands who graduated from San Diego State University are regarded by campus fundraisers as “lost.” To hit up the missing, the school has been combing through “thousands of digital files from 1986-2014,” according to the March minutes of SDSU’s Campanile Foundation. Even drop-outs are desirable from a rainmaking standpoint, the fundraisers say. “They found 2000 lost alumni and over 60,000 lost attendees.” Casting the net further still, “another project they are working on is to build Affinity Groups related to any of the activities the students were engaged in when they were here. They processed 3624 registration cards from the marching band, and of those 1324 are new to the database.”

The cash will likely come in handy; Campanile must come up with $2.5 million that president Elliot Hirshman insists is required to land a yet-to-be identified high-dollar professor. “There is a need to recruit a faculty member who is a member of the National Academy of Sciences to help our leading faculty become members of the National Academy,” board member Terry Atkinson explained. “President Hirshman mentioned that we have some great faculty members that cannot get into the academy without having someone in the academy nominate them.”

Adds the account, “President Hirshman concluded that this is just one of the initiatives we have planned to brand The Campanile Foundation. When you go to certain universities like Yale, you hear ‘Vanderbilt Hall,’ ‘Vanderbilt Endowed Chair,’ or ‘Vanderbilt Scholars.’ For us, The Campanile Foundation is going to be that branding. In the long run, we will pursue other ideas such as the ‘The Campanile Foundation Visiting Artist,’ or ‘The Campanile Foundation Coach.’ There is no timeline yet but there are possibilities for more opportunities, like the Campanile Foundation Endowed Chair.”

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Comments

monaghan May 6, 2015 @ 5:08 p.m.

I always thought admission to the National Academy of Sciences depended on a person's producing a body of superb work over time, not on a who-do-you-know fraternity-style-thumbs-up. Maybe those "great faculty members" at San Diego State who don't get inducted into the National Academy on their own should just keep on keepin' on being "great" but not olympian.

Also, maybe President Hirshman is confused about profs' proper roles at the state college level: to focus on teaching more than research. It's a different deal up at UCSD, for example, where profs often teach only one class in a semester, because they are supposed to be busy thinking, researching and writing, lest they perish.

It is true that much of San Diego's political lifeblood flows through SDSU, but in science, not so much. And Campanile Foundation "branding?" I'm not sure what that advertising jargon means in this instance.

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Visduh May 7, 2015 @ 9:02 p.m.

I possess an advanced degree from SDSU. For the first few years the school that I had attended kept in touch with me. After that, nothing. It seemed that as far as an alumni association was concerned, they had one that failed in the 70's or early 80's. Then they came along and created a group called "alumni and associates", meaning anyone could join, but few did, and that failed. Then in more recent years the administration has managed to reestablish an alumni association, and it enjoys some successes. But I'd guess that SDSU has failed to keep current on upwards of a million alum in the county and in surrounding areas. Then, other than the football and hoops programs, it doesn't really offer its alums much in the way of connection. When have I heard of any sort of outreach that says "welcome back?" Never. When I received that degree over forty years ago, I was ripe for making a real connection. But the university missed every opportunity to keep me connected, and now, well, fuhgeddabouddit!

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