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Semester Conversion

To the Campus Community:

The CSU system has decided its 23 campuses will follow a semester calendar. We are among six campuses that will convert from quarters to semesters.

At its heart, this change will be a gift to future generations. The benefits of conversion are very clear, especially in supporting our student success initiatives. The semester system allows for more in-depth projects, richer learning experiences, and closer relationships between faculty and students. A semester calendar better aligns us with other colleges and universities. Virtually all community colleges are on semesters, enabling students to more easily transfer course credits and complete their degree.

Students can also take advantage of more summer internships and research experiences. Faculty will find more sabbatical and academic opportunities. Finally, collaboration is greatly augmented. It will be easier to share programs with other CSU campuses and partner in grants, research, and academic initiatives. 

Transitioning to semesters is a lengthy and intensive process. We will collaborate across departments and divisions to identify steps, and determine the budget required for each task. This involves anticipating the needs of our current students, prospective students, faculty, and staff. We will then adjust our curriculum, train staff, and convert our programs and processes. Most important, we will advise each of our students. We pledge that each student who meets with an advisor and creates an Individual Academic Plan should suffer no loss in academic credit or progress to degree.

For years, our university has discussed the merits of conversion. In fact, several years ago, an ad hoc committee recommended conversion to a semester calendar because of its benefits. However, the Academic Senate expressed concern over the expense and recommended against it. Now that the Chancellor's Office is covering most of the cost of conversion, we are well positioned to make this change.

Conversion to semesters will demand the engagement of everyone in the Cal Poly Pomona community, including faculty, staff and student leaders serving in the semester conversion steering committee and subcommittees. With our extensive planning and thoughtful collaboration, I expect that our transition will be the best effort in the CSU.

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