University considers college restructuring to save costs

The University Planning Advisory Council (UPAC) -- tasked in December 2009 with considering budget proposals related to academic affairs, imminent budget matters and ways in which the University might be restructured and streamlined to make better use of the funds available to the campus -- submitted recommendations in January.

A photo of the SF State sign

The council's report and recommendations are available for review at

On Feb. 4, 2011, President Corrigan announced that he and Provost Rosser have accepted the vast majority of UPAC’s work and are moving forward with most of the recommendations.

Fourteen of the council's cost-saving recommendations are already in progress, addressing not only academic issues, but the exploration of such administrative matters as lease agreements, equipment procurement and equipment sharing.  Details on the recommendations can be found in the report and President Corrigan's e-mail to faculty and staff discussing his responses can be found at:

One recommendation -- described by President Corrigan as "the broadest and most challenging of UPAC’s recommendations" -- is to reorganize the University's academic programs from an eight-college structure. While the president and provost accepted the general concept of the recommendation, they determined that further discussion and review is needed. 

Toward that end, they asked the Academic Senate to conduct a referendum on three organizational alternatives: the six-college structure as proposed by UPAC; and two proposals that have six colleges plus a free-standing graduate school of education, but offer different departmental configurations within colleges.

Faculty voting on the referendum began Feb. 11 and will conclude on Feb. 22.

Voting is limited to faculty members, who were notified of their eligibility by e-mail. Comments on the three alternatives in the referendum are welcome from the entire University community. 

To review the alternatives and provide feedback, visit   This page will accept feedback through Friday, Feb. 25. 

President Corrigan expressed deep appreciation to UPAC for its work, and stated his hope is "to preserve both SF State jobs and the high quality education that is both our mission and our pride."

San Francisco State, as with all public higher education in California, has experienced steady declines in state support over recent years.  Despite its ranking by the Delta Cost Project and Ed Trust as one of the 20 most efficient university campuses in terms of campus spending per student, the campus must nonetheless find ways to preserve educational excellence within more limited means.

-- Ellen Griffin