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Feature Stories

CSULB President Possibly Headed to Louisiana State

From Issue: Volume XXI - Number 6

By Terri Carbaugh

F. King Alexander

California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) President F. King Alexander has been recommended by a presidential search committee at Louisiana State University (LSU) to become the next president of LSU.

This recommendation was presented to the LSU Board of Supervisors Monday. The board received the recommendation but took no action. Board members are expected to consider Alexander’s candidacy at a special meeting on Wednesday, March 27.

Alexander began his duties as president at CSULB in 2006. Under his leadership, the university has improved its graduation rates to the highest levels in school history, and that in turn has led to the largest numbers of graduating students in the university’s history, peaking at nearly 9,000.

Alexander’s legacy at CSULB includes a strengthening of the city’s Long Beach Education Partnership with the establishment of the Long Beach College Promise, a joint effort with the Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD) and Long Beach City College (LBCC). The College Promise has served Long Beach area students and families by guaranteeing a seat in college in spite of the fact CSULB has been faced with turning away thousands of eligible students.

Since its creation in 2008, the College Promise has been recognized as a model for the state and nation with several California communities –Fresno, Inland Empire, Los Angeles, Sacramento and San Francisco.

During the depths of the California recession, Alexander persevered in securing capital funding and constructed three significant building projects on campus, including its $110 million, state-of-the-art Hall of Science to help fill the state’s future STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) employment needs. The science building is the largest capital building project in CSULB’s history and, at the time of its opening, was the largest building project in the California State University (CSU) system.

Alexander elevated the campus’ recognition as one of the nation’s best values in public higher education and has added to its reputation as a top college destination in the country as its application total from freshman and transfer students topped 82,000 this past fall.

He significantly increased CSULB research and external funding capacity and support. He oversaw a reorganization of the university’s institutional advancement and public relations office.

The university’s private philanthropic giving has set institutional records and currently is in the midst of a first “Capital Campaign,” where more than $200 million has already been raised, resulting in a doubling of the university’s endowment.