Academic Year End Message from the Provost

May 21, 2020

Dear Faculty and Academic Affairs Staff,

As this most unusual of unusual academic years is coming to an official close, I am writing to express my heartfelt gratitude to you.

Together, as an academic community, we have weathered power shutoffs, smoke, fire, and a pandemic. And all of that was just in the last ten months!

In spite of these emergencies and the very real threats to our campus and our well-being, we have delivered on our shared commitment to serve our students and provide high-quality, accessible education.

Once again we have shown that we are a community of educators capable of rising above any challenge that might be thrown our way.

Since I came to Sonoma State three years ago, we have navigated a truly unprecedented series of crises and emergencies. While I think we all could have done with a few fewer (!) emergencies, I am proud that we have continued to evolve in our resilience, always finding new ways to address whatever natural or human-made disaster we face. 

COVID-19 will continue to impact our community, our university, and, indeed, our world, over the next year and beyond. I also know that Sonoma State faculty and staff have built a strong foundation that will serve the institution well through this period of uncertainty.

As you can see from the Academic Affairs 2019-20 Accomplishments, we are making real progress on our strategic priorities in service to student success, academic excellence, leadership cultivation, and transformative impact. These efforts are making an impact on our students, faculty, staff, and the broader community in ways that are both inspiring and meaningful.

I want to thank each and every person in Academic Affairs for making it possible for us to move SSU’s Strategic Plan forward in service to our students, faculty, staff, alumni, and greater community. Together, we are indeed building our future.

As we face the fiscal and public health challenges of COVID-19, I know that the future will be bright at SSU because we have a clear set of values and priorities. Many real challenges lie ahead, but we have values, goals, and a shared vision to guide us. 

I wish you a restful, peaceful, and, most of all, healthful summer.

Thank you for helping us all be #SonomaStrong.


In gratitude,


Lisa Vollendorf, Provost