Seawolves SPEAK: What do students hope to see in the new university president?

On July 1, Dr. Judy K. Sakaki will relinquish her position as vice president of student affairs at the University of California, Office of the President, and, for the first time, walk the campus of Sonoma State University as the official new President of University Affairs. Sakaki will be welcomed by the many who believe her experience will bring meaningful changes to this university. However, political science major, Erick Nunez-Aguilar believes, “she will also be received with the current antitrust sentiment present at Sonoma State.”

Sakaki will be the successor of current and longest serving president at Sonoma State, Ruben Armiñana, whose levels of popularity are low with students, faculty and staff and who even received a vote no-confidence from 73.4 percent of faculty in 2007. Armiñana has been heavily criticized for allegedly underfunding academic programs and overfunding the construction of buildings such as the Green Music Center. “Without a doubt Dr. Sakaki will have to work diligently to gain the trust of the Sonoma State community,” said Nunez-Aguilar.

Although there will be an open forum on Feb. 12 in the Student Center Ballroom for the Sonoma State campus to formally meet Dr. Sakaki, the Sonoma State STAR could not wait and decided to ask students for their opinions. What do you hope Dr. Judy K. Sakaki will bring to this university?

“I hope that with her experience at bigger schools, [Judy Sakaki] will be able to bring diversity and different ideas to our campus.”

- Stephanie Ramirez
Political science major
sophomore

I hope [Sakaki] will fight to open up more classes, especially for impacted majors like biochemistry.”

-Adrian Alvarado,
biochemistry major,
Junior

“I hope [Sakaki] will be considerate of our faculty and their needs, being a professor is not easy task and they deserve a lot more.”

- Audrey Hamblin,
Hutchins major,
junior

“I hope [Sakaki] will listen more to the students, and bring things students would like to see.”

- Bijan Shamai,
marketing major,
senior

“I hope the new president can take our needs into consideration such as advocating for a parking structure as well as more classes. With the current student population growth these demands will continue to be a recurring issue.”

- Lisa El Sao,
criminal justice major,
senior