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Office of the President Monthly Update

A Year of Excellence

Dear Students, Faculty, Staff and Friends:

This month marked my first anniversary as president of Cleveland State University, so I want to begin by thanking each and every one of you for making our first year together so memorable. All of us can look back with great pride on our achievements over the past 12 months. Among the highlights:

  • Our innovative partnerships with Cuyahoga Community College and Lorain County Community College are streamlining pathways for more students to earn a four-year degree from CSU.
  • The initial response to the University’s new Parker Hannifin Living and Learning Community has been overwhelmingly positive. We’ve extended scholarship offers to 30 Cleveland Metropolitan School District graduates that will cover room and board at CSU for two years, while the Say Yes Cleveland initiative takes care of their tuition.
  • Our Cleveland State Global initiative is helping us recruit top international students and ensure their success through graduation.

Spring 2019 Commencement

Empowering all students to succeed at CSU remains a cornerstone of our mission — and our graduates are our greatest success stories. I had the honor of shaking hands with nearly 2,000 of them at Spring Commencement. Congratulations to the Class of 2019!

In the coming days and weeks, a full slate of Orientation sessions will bring a steady stream of incoming freshmen, transfer students, graduate students and international students to campus. I know you’ll make these newest members of our Viking family feel right at home.

The forward momentum at the University is also resonating in the community at large and generating vital support from generous donors:

Radiance 2019 Celebration

  • Our ninth annual Radiance: CSU Realizing the Promise gala raised more than $2 million — a new record! — for student success initiatives at CSU. During the festivities, Sullivan-Deckard Scholar MaryAnn Dowdell spoke powerfully about the experience of students who have aged out of the foster system. The University also awarded the President’s Medal to Jenniffer and Daryl Deckard and Barbara and Frank Sullivan, who have been instrumental in our efforts to improve educational opportunity for former foster youth.

Char and Chuck Fowler Gift Announcement

In closing, let me reiterate how deeply grateful I am for all we’ve been able to accomplish to date — and I couldn’t be more excited about what the future holds as we move forward together. With our new Mission Statement, Vision Statement and Statement of Strategic Priorities to guide us, I truly believe CSU’s best days lie ahead.

Have a wonderful summer!


Harlan M. Sands, J.D., M.B.A.
Cleveland State University

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