2003-205 University Catalog spacer
California State University, ChicoTable of ContentsSearchDegreesCoursesScheduleHome spacer

Welcome From the President

Manuel A. Esteban Photo Dear Students:

The Chancellor of the California State University system asked each CSU President to think deeply about what makes our individual campuses distinct from the rest. Because I believe passionately about this outstanding university, I had a difficult time in trimming the list. The list I ultimately came up with very probably include most of the reasons why you decided to enroll here.

First, we are proud of the residential nature of our campus. The university's setting in Chico, the only true classic college town in California, sets it apart not only from other CSU campuses but from every other college in the state as well. CSU, Chico is a picturesque campus with creekside bridges and pathways, loads of trees, grass, and flowers, and beautiful Mediterranean-style buildings. The beauty, charm, and safety make it easy for us to be a community of learners.

Second, we have a deep commitment to student success and to the training of leaders. CSU, Chico's graduation rate consistently ranks among the highest in the CSU (your parents will particularly like this fact), and our award-winning career planning and placement office finds our students are among the most heavily recruited on the West Coast by top corporations. For the sixth consecutive year, our civil engineering students won the Mid-Pacific Region Steel Bridge competition and then finished in the top 5% in national competition. The Orion, our student newspaper, was just named Newspaper of the Year from the Associated Collegiate Press for the second straight year (and fourth time in five years) and received the first place award for general excellence from the California Newspaper Publishers Association. Our Model United Nations team, representing the United States, received a Distinguished Delegation award during the annual conference in New York with 200 international delegations.

Third, we are a leader in distance and online education and the use of new educational technologies to create high-quality learning environments. CSU, Chico was the first campus in the CSU to try distance education--26 years ago, in fact. We now offer more than 100 distance courses annually, with five undergraduate degree completion programs and one master's degree via the Internet. For more than 20 years, we have also maintained satellite technology for receiving and transmitting programs throughout the world, currently delivering coursework live each semester to Japan. But for those not yet comfortable with the high-tech environment, our faculty do just fine in the traditional manner of teaching--and they have dozens of "outstanding" awards to prove it.

As your education is our most important endeavor, our focus on the creation of a high-quality and caring learning/academic environment is crucial. Unlike larger, less "personal" universities, our class sizes are small with a high degree of one-on-one time between student and professor. In spite of the rigorous and demanding curriculum, we consistently have one of the highest retention rates and one of the highest graduation rates in the CSU. So we not only want to make sure you graduate, but we also want to make sure you learn while you're here. Our student advising program has won national awards, and CSU, Chico professors have received the Outstanding Adviser Award from the National Academic Advising Association for five of the last six years. We take your education seriously and we want you to succeed, so we make sure we're here to help if you need advice on which classes to take or what major is best for you or if you happen to have trouble with one of your classes.

As you can see, CSU, Chico has much to be proud of and many things you can become involved in if you so desire. I wish you a fun and productive career.

Manuel A. Esteban Signature