Friday, May 14, 2021

$433 Million Proposed for HSU Polytechnic

Posted By on Fri, May 14, 2021 at 12:54 PM

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During today's revised budget proposal presentation, Gov. Gavin Newsom said he's proposing $433 million for Humboldt State University's transformation into California State University's third polytechnic university.

“I am a big supporter of Cal Polys. We have two; we want to create a third. And that’s the significant investment: $433 million,” Newsom said. “We’ve been working with the Board of Trustees — the incredible new leader at the CSU — about this opportunity to revitalize the economy in Northern California around Humboldt State, and to look at this opportunity to have a third polytechnic campus.”

State Sen. Mike McGuire and Assemblymember Jim Wood were quick to celebrate the news via Twitter this morning.
"There's $433M in [California Governor] Newsom's May Revise budget for a third #polytechnic campus for [Humboldt State University]. So exciting and proud of the hard work #HSU is doing to make it happen!" Wood wrote in a tweet.
"Today’s major announcement — investing over $400 million — to help transition Humboldt State into California’s third polytechnic university is a game changer for the campus, our regional economy and the greater North Coast community," McGuire tweeted.

HSU has begun work on a self-study report to detail the changes it would make to become a fully functioning polytechnic university to present to the CSU Chancellor's Office by September. If approved by new CSU Chancellor Joseph Castro, HSU President Tom Jackson would then formally request a polytechnic consideration from the CSU Board of Trustees by next spring.

In a recent virtual visit to HSU, Castro said he was excited about the prospect of HSU becoming the system's third polytechnic university.

"Chancellor White invited me to a meeting with President Jackson during the transition, so I had a chance to learn more about it, as well, and I am excited by the idea," Castro said during the virtual meeting. "I learned more today about some of the details and we have a self-study coming to the chancellor's office and that will be reviewed and, if all goes well, we’ll present it to the board of trustees for approval."

In a release, HSU writes "The governor’s proposal would support its conversion to a polytechnic by funding new academic programs, additional support for students including housing and basic needs, new facilities, technology throughout the curriculum and expanded broadband."

Read HSU's full release below.

Governor Proposes Funding to Transform Humboldt State

California Governor Gavin Newsom has proposed a transformational investment in support of Humboldt State University’s efforts to become the state’s third polytechnic university.

In his May Budget Revise, released today, Gov. Newsom included significant new funding for the effort. It will now go to the Legislature for consideration, along with the other proposed updates and modifications to his original budget. The CSU Board of Trustees will review the proposal at a future meeting.

Combining all budget proposals from January through May, Gov. Newsom has proposed an increase of $514.9 million in recurring funding that will substantially align with the funding priorities expressed in the CSU Board of Trustees’ budget request for 2021-22. Additionally, the Governor’s proposals would provide a one-time allocation of $325 million, of which $150 million is federal funds, for critical infrastructure, maintenance, and renovation projects.

Governor Newsom also proposed an additional allocation of $433 million in one-time investment and $25 million ongoing funds to advance the transition of Humboldt State University into the state’s third polytechnic university. And he proposed $25 million for the construction of a national Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) “Equity Innovation Hub” to innovate education pathways to inspire belonging in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) at CSU Northridge.

The Governor’s proposal would support HSU’s conversion to a polytechnic by funding new academic programs, additional support for students including housing and basic needs, new facilities, technology throughout the curriculum, and expanded broadband. Funding will also help HSU maintain and strengthen its focus on inclusive educational access and success as it works to eliminate equity gaps and raise graduation rates as part of the CSU’s Graduation Initiative 2025.

Demand throughout California is very strong for the programs and hands-on experiences offered by polytechnic schools. The two other polytechnic universities in the CSU—at San Luis Obispo and Pomona—are beyond capacity, and a third polytechnic will improve opportunities for students seeking majors in these areas. Humboldt State’s plans for becoming a polytechnic build on its strong foundation in the liberal arts and long-standing commitment to sustainability and social justice, and will infuse traditional ecological knowledge, renewable energy, and more.

HSU President Tom Jackson, Jr. said: “We are deeply grateful to Governor Newsom for seeing the potential in our polytechnic efforts, and for all the support of our planning efforts from CSU Chancellor Joseph I. Castro and his team. The Governor’s proposal opens amazing new opportunities for the students, many of whom are the first in their family to attend college. We are in a position to help meet the needs in the North Coast region and California for a diverse, highly educated workforce in science, technology, engineering, and math.”

Governor Newsom’s May Revision Summary

More about HSU’s self-study on becoming a polytechnic

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Iridian Casarez

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Iridian Casarez is a staff writer at the North Coast Journal.

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