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A magazine from California State University, Chico -- On-line Edition  
Summer 2007
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  Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi and Paul Zingg
Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi and Paul Zingg

Celebrating Partnerships

One of the genuine pleasures of summer is the opportunity for leisure reading. Even this summer, when there seemed little relief from the tasks of developing budget, enrollment, and furlough plans, I devoured a good-sized reading list, including two wonderful books about partnerships.

The first, The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein, is a fictional account of the bond between a man and his dog. It is an uplifting story of love and hope and loyalty that enables both to find meaning in their lives and the courage to face extraordinary challenges. You do not have to be a dog lover to enjoy this novel and its magical lead characters.

The second, Caddy for Life by John Feinstein, is the story of the 30-year friendship between golfer Tom Watson and his caddy, Bruce Edwards. Again, loyalty and virtue are the themes that embrace a life-affirming journey between these men, especially in their last season together when Edwards was battling the deteriorating effects of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

So, with partnerships on my mind, I was pleased to note the focus of this issue of Chico Statements, which is all about partnerships.

The Wildcat Recreation Center is a partnership of vision. For more than a mutual recognition by the Associated Students and the University administration of the need for such a facility to support the health and well-being of our students, the center has the potential to transform campus life through its physical location on our southwest corner and to strengthen the appeal of Chico State for generations of students to come. It is a partnership generated by trust and marked with high expectations.

The expedition to Papua New Guinea by our adjunct professor and alum John Lane and two faculty colleagues is a partnership of discovery. Finding strength through the connection of their disciplines and a passion for fieldwork, they enabled the success of this joint expedition and provided for their students important lessons in how knowledge is advanced through teamwork and trust.

The feature on Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi underscores a partnership of pride that her alma mater feels in her achievements. Identified recently by Forbes magazine as among the 100 most powerful women in the world, Sheikha Lubna was presented with an honorary doctorate at our spring 2009 Commencement. We recognized not only her accomplishments as minister of foreign trade for the United Arab Emirates, but also her profound commitment to women’s issues globally.

Partnerships take many forms and serve many purposes. Essentially, they are an alliance of trust and effort to achieve common goals. A university depends on partnerships to succeed, and it is good to begin our academic year celebrating those we have and pursuing those we need.

—Paul J. Zingg, President