Friends of the College

margaret schmidtWhy is Chico State Special?

Remember those hot summer days while attending Chico State? What did you and your friends do to stay cool in the Chico heat? Was it a relaxing swim at One Mile or an ice cream cone at Shuberts? These Chico activities are some of my favorite memories during the time I attended Chico State from 1979-1982. As an alumna, and now the parent of a Chico State student, I know these memories are treasures of what makes Chico State special.

I’m now in my third year working with the incredible staff and faculty within the College of Natural Sciences and can personally attest that they are also what make Chico State an outstanding institution.  Our staff and faculty work very hard to bring their very best each day to the classroom so our students receive a high quality education. They are what make Chico State special as well. Read more (will link to below.)

As alumni of the College, I suspect you have a special memory of a certain faculty member who mentored you through a difficult course or helped you understand a new concept in math or science. We have had several alumni honor their faculty members this past year by contributing financial gifts to begin undergraduate research award programs. Dr. Donald Alger (Chemistry), Dr. David Ball (Chemistry) and Dr. Faye Johnson (Nutrition) are three faculty members who have award programs developed in their honor. I hope you will consider starting an award or scholarship program to honor a special faculty member that made a difference in your life.

We continue to focus on developing excellent undergraduate research programs in each area of the college: Biological Sciences, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Geological and Environmental Sciences, Mathematics and Statistics, Nursing, Nutrition and Food Sciences, Physics, and Science Education. Your annual fund gifts are often used to purchase chemicals and supplies and fund travel expenses so our students can present their research at national conferences. The opportunity to participate in real world research projects and possibly publish a research paper as an undergraduate cements our student’s choice to pursue a career in the natural sciences. This is just another example of what makes Chico State special.

Our centers -- Center for Nutrition and Activity Promotion, Center for Water and the Environment, Clinical Simulation Center, and Center for Math and Science Education -- extend themselves as vital resources to our local communities and act as research centers for our faculty and students. The faculty, staff and students who work in these centers continue to excel in their disciplines and have become specialists in their industries.

Our alumni are also what make Chico State special. They, along with our corporate partners, enabled our college to surpass its fundraising goal in FY2013 and raise over $1.5M in gifts to provide equipment, scholarships, and support across the many departments and centers within our college. These gifts will have a far-reaching impact on our faculty and students. Ultimately – our very special alumni are intricately woven into the fabric that makes Chico State special.

If you are interested in participating by providing support to our college or a specific department or center, please contact me directly at 530.898.3478 or

 Thank you for your continued support – and hope to see you at our Alumni Reunion on October 11-12, 2013!

Margaret Schmidt

Director of Advancement