CALEXICO — When students return to the San Diego State University Imperial Valley campus in fall 2021, they will have the option to enroll in a greater variety of degree programs, according to a press release.

Students will also have the opportunity to enjoy a campus that has undergone noticeable remodeling and refurbishment in anticipation of its expanding role in the Imperial Valley, to include campus facilities in Calexico and Brawley being repainted in the SDSU color scheme.

The added offerings and student support services follow three years of increased investment across SDSU Imperial Valley.

“Over the last 12 months, and amid the pandemic, SDSU Imperial Valley has been laying a foundation to better serve the needs of our students and expand our role as the Valley’s only public, four-year university,” said Dean Gregorio A. Ponce.

Among the additions coming to SDSU Imperial Valley this fall are:

  • New four-year Liberal Studies B.A. degree for freshmen
  • New B.A. in Math degree for transfer students
  • New graduate program in Homeland Security
  • Multiple new degree opportunities being offered in partnership with SDSU's Global Campus, for working adults who need a flexible path to complete a Bachelor of Science degree in business or in childhood development    
  • The hiring of four new tenure-track faculty members
  • The addition of five new full-time staff members to the Student Affairs team
  • The addition of a new administrative position, the assistant director of Facilities Services
  • The hiring of a full-time enrollment services coordinator

The dramatic one-year addition of programs, services, staff, and faculty is due in large part to the continued commitment of SDSU President Adela de la Torre and SDSU Imperial Valley Dean Gregorio A. Ponce to meet the community's growing needs.

Additional efforts are underway to further enhance the academic offerings at SDSU Imperial Valley and expand the services students receive.

Associate Dean for Academics Mark Wheeler is enthusiastic about the four faculty positions being filled and the caliber of the candidates being considered. The positions are a full-time, tenure-track librarian, a criminal justice professor, an English and comparative literature professor specializing in Chicanx literature, and a public administration professor. 

The librarian, who will replace a position that was part-time in previous years, will be a tremendous asset for faculty and student research in the Valley, according to Wheeler.

“I look forward to the librarian collaborating with partners all across the border, including with universities in Mexico, to build out our special collections and become a true asset for scholarship and service across the region,” Wheeler said.

Student Affairs is adding positions dedicated specifically to assist students with financial aid; career and veteran services; academic advising, student retention; and Campus Assistance, Response Engagement and Support (CARES) advising.

“Previously, our staff had to wear many hats,” Ponce said. “These new positions allow us, for the first time, to have staff focused on a full-time basis on priority student needs. These changes will really enhance the way we can serve our students.” 

“These additional support services are just the beginning,” said Interim Dean of Students Henry Villegas.

“SDSU’s strategic plan includes a commitment to ensuring an excellent and consistent student experience across all campus locations, with specific investments in SDSU Imperial Valley,” Villegas said. “I am confident that what we’ve done this year will dramatically enhance the student experience, and provide us a stronger foundation for student well-being, engagement, leadership development and personal and professional growth for many years to come.”

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