CSUB president discusses plan for the future return to campus


Patrick Record

Photo of CSU Bakersfield President Dr. Lynnette Zelezny taken from CSU Chancellor’s Office media resources

Gisselle Gamez, Reporter

CSU Bakersfield’s President Zelezny started off the first Runner Walk & Talk of the spring 2021 semester on January 28 with an announcement regarding Calif. Gov. Gavin Newsom’s budget proposal for the CSU system. 

Due to the rise in the budget, tuition will not be rising. The Runner Walk & Talk is a virtual meeting where students and staff gather to discuss important issues and ask questions.  

CSUB remains on a hiring freeze due to the pandemic. President Zelezny also announced that the CSU has also received additional funding that will be used to provide the students of CSUB with another CARES Act grant. There is a team working on this already on this second CARES Act disbursement. 

“We expect that we’ll be able to get checks to you probably around the end of February,” Zelezny said. 

Face-to-face instruction is still set to resume for the fall 2021 semester according to the CSU system, and they are working closely with academic affairs on welcoming students back to campus in the safest way possible. Updates are to come. 

President Zelezny also announced that CSUB is applying for state certification to be a vaccine distribution site.  

“This requires a pretty in-depth state application. It requires special kinds of insurance and training from our staff,” Zelezny said. 

More details on that are to come as well. She encourages students to get vaccinated if possible.  

CSUB’s Associated Student Inc and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion will continue community conversations about social issues, injustices, and equity because of the students for thstudents via Zoom. The Kegley Ethics Institute will be hosting an event for Ibram X. Kendi, author of “How to Be an Anti-Racist,” in April.  

CSUB also welcomes a brand new cabinet member, Ronnie Gomez, a graduate from UC San Diego with a history degree, as well as a law degree from the University of Texas.  

ASI President, Vanessa Chicaiza also wanted students to know that ASI continues to be an essential service. It is still running and at the service of all CSUB students. Chicaiza also mentioned that ASI is taking students to fill in positions for vice president of campus life, director of student-athlete engagement, director of transfer students, and director of international relations.  

ASI elections will also be taking place soon. Applications open up on February 8th and will close on March 15th.  

“All of the students’ feedback, all of your voices are really heard and this guides our work as ASI throughout our advocacy that we going to be doing,” Chicaiza said. 

Chicaiza reminded students that their opinions matter as well, even during this distanced learning experience.  

Vernon Harper, CSU Bakersfield’s Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, cleared up that make-up in-person commencement ceremonies will still be happening in order to catch up on all of the missed ceremonies due to the pandemic, but there is no set date yet. The in-person commencement ceremony for Spring 2021 is still not absolute and could possibly be shelved for a later date.  

Hot Spots and laptop rentals are still available for students. Parking permits are now required, but the price has been reduced to $3 a day and $45 per semester. They can be purchased online or at the cashier’s office. Prices for a semester will lower as the semester progresses. Also, there is no penalty for students who have not fully paid off their tuition yet due to the pandemic.