Outstanding Aztecs Are Everywhere!

presidentThe school year begins with the Convocation Ceremony. During his remarks, President Eliot Hirshman noted many achievements from the past year. Here are some of the ones he named, all of which prove that there are too many Outstanding Aztecs to name. The full text of President Hirshman’s speech can be found at http://newscenter. sdsu.edu/ootp/

  • “SDSU’s six-year graduation rate was a record 74 percent, and our transfer graduation rate was 86 percent. This extraordinary progress reflects the concerted efforts of thousands of faculty and staff across the entire university.
  • In the past year, a record number of students studied abroad, participated in internships and the Aztec Mentor Program, presented their original research at our Student Research Symposium and enrolled in the Susan and Stephen Weber Honors
  • Especially exciting developments occurred in our entrepreneurship programs which were ranked in the top 25 by “Forbes” and by “Fortune” magazine. A $5.1 million gift from the Zahn family allowed us to establish the Zahn Innovation Plat- form and award the inaugural Irwin Zahn Spirit of Innovation Prize to graduating senior Austin
  • International programs – ranked 15th in the nation – continued to support student achievement.
  • Traveling far in the past year were Ellison Grove, who interned at the State Department; Stephanie Castillo, a biology major who carried out original research at the Smithsonian; and journalism major Quinn Owen, who interned for George Stephanopoulos at ABC News in New
  • Research and creative endeavors brought special distinction to the university. We received $130 million in external funding – almost 10 percent more than the prior year. (CHHS is the leading college for grant and contract )
  • Efforts to eradicate health disparities in our communities received special recognition. (This effort is lead by faculty at the Graduate School of Public )
  • The Comprehensive Cancer Center received $13 million to fight cancer in un- derserved communities, and our interdisciplinary team, led by Suchi Ayala, Associate Dean for Research at CHHS, received a $10 million endowment from the National Institutes of Health.
  • 127,000 members of our community attended nearly 300 arts events on our campus and our SDSU Downtown mega-concert sold out Copley Symphony Hall.
  • The unprecedented success in athletics continues – five Mountain West championships, including men’s basketball and football playing in its sixth consecutive bowl game.
  • In the ninth year of the campaign, our extraordinarily alumni, community supporters, faculty, staff and students donated a record $107 million to The Campaign total now stands at $775
  • SDSU received a record 83,000 applications this year, and our 5,000-strong freshman class has an average GPA of 7.
  • The Education Trust recognized us as one of only 26 universities in the country that have increased graduation rates for students in all ethnic and racial backgrounds, and “Forbes” magazine rated us 16th in the nation for providing the best value in a quality education.

Many, many outstanding Aztecs are working very hard to make SDSU more distinguished every year.


Congratulations Dr. Tom Packard on the 2016 Faculty Monty Award

dr. packardThe San Diego State University Alumni Association recently announced the Awards for Outstanding Faculty Contributions to the University, more commonly known as the “Faculty Monty”. Each year, the group honors one outstanding faculty member from each of the University’s colleges and awardees are recognized at the All-University Convocation.

Dr. Tom Packard is a Professor Emeritus in the School of Social Work. He earned his DSW at UCLA and both his MSW and BA from SDSU, making him both a faculty member and an alumnus. Professor Packard teaches administration and social policy courses in the school, and conducts research and consultation projects through the Academy for Professional Excellence.  He also serves as the advisor for the MSW/MPH program.

For over 25 years he was an organization development consultant specializing in human service and government organizations, including 6 1/2 years in the City of San Diego’s Organization Effectiveness Program, which he managed for 1 1/2 years. He has consulted with organizations ranging in size from 10,000 to 5 employees. He has published articles on his consulting projects and the results of his research in the areas of organizational change, leadership, organizational effectiveness, and the quality of working life. His current research focus is organizational change tactics used in human service organizations. He has coauthored Management of Human Service Programs and Managing the Challenges in Human Service Organizations: A Casebook.