University of California, San Diego

October 2, 1995
In this first opportunity to address you in my new role, let me say that it is my sincere pleasure to serve as your Interim Chancellor. I appreciate your support and pledge to uphold the standards of excellence long held at UCSD. I have been approached by many concerned faculty, staff, and students about the resolutions adopted by The Regents of the University of California which prohibit considerations of race, color, ethnicity or gender in admissions, employment and contracting decisions. Because there is concern and discussion on this issue throughout the campus, I would like to address it at this time.
Although I did not welcome The Regents' decision on this matter, it does present us with both a challenge and an opportunity to rethink our diversity efforts. Despite our past affirmative action efforts, UCSD is far from being the diverse community we all desire. Our challenge is to create such a community and ensure that all people of California have equal opportunity to participate in the University as students, faculty, and staff.
One such approach has been initiated by the Office of the President which recently established three task forces charged with reviewing and recommending policies for student admissions, faculty and staff employment, and business contracting. The UC Admissions Task Force has until the end of next year to complete its task. Meanwhile UCSD has begun discussions on the revision of admissions criteria and strategies to increase diversity in our student body. Key to these discussions will be the Academic Senate Committee on Admissions. Many innovative programs are being considered and some projects already have been initiated to improve our outreach efforts. Clearly our priority is to reach out to the primary and secondary schools to foster student preparation for success in the University. I encourage each of you to support this effort and participate to whatever extent possible.
Vice Chancellor Relyea has already written you concerning the issue of faculty and staff employment and business contracting. In large measure, UCSD's substantial research contracts, and the positions which those contracts fund, are regulated by federal laws which supersede actions by The Regents. For this reason, we do not anticipate major changes in our employment and contracting procedures. However, we do need to enhance our outreach and diversity efforts to ensure compliance with both federal requirements and The Regents resolutions. The UC task forces established to review faculty and staff employment and business contracting are expected to make recommendations by mid-October regarding implementation of The Regents decision and furthering diversity goals. Our campus will have the opportunity to respond to those recommendations at that time.
Among the many goals and objectives for UCSD is a faculty, staff, and student body representative of the public we serve. I am committed to working with you towards fulfilling this critically important goal.
Marjorie C. Caserio
Interim Chancellor