Winter Quarter Update

To: Campus Community

From: Chancellor Blumenthal

Happy New Year and welcome to Winter Quarter 2010. I hope that your break was restful and that you return to campus ready to resume your roles in UCSC's teaching, learning, research, and public service endeavors.

I am greatly encouraged by Governor Schwarzenegger's statement on Wednesday in support of substantially increased funding for higher education in California. His proposal to invest significantly more in higher education than in prisons would reverse a devastating trend in UC and CSU funding and reflects a return to the values that shaped California's history of innovation. Of course, the budget process in California is complex, and significant challenges remain, but I welcome the governor's strong endorsement of the value of higher education to the people of California.

In the short term, however, the state must contend with a budget shortfall of approximately $20 billion. We will learn more in the next few days about how the governor intends to address that deficit, and I promise to keep you apprised of developments and how those developments will affect us at UCSC.

At this time, I must also announce that David Kliger has decided to step down from his post as Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor, effective June 30, 2010. As my closest colleague, Dave has been an invaluable asset to me for more than three years. He has provided truly exceptional service to the campus as Campus Provost/EVC for nearly five years, as Dean for 15 years, and before that as both Divisional Senate Chair and Department Chair. I will miss his candor, his wisdom, and his tireless dedication to UC Santa Cruz. After consulting with the Senate leadership, I have decided to begin an immediate search for Dave's replacement.

There is much work to do, and Dave will continue, with my full support, to oversee the 2010-2011 budget-planning process. I am grateful that we will benefit from Dave's leadership this winter and spring, because even as we anticipate greater state support for the university in coming years, there is little doubt that difficult decisions will have to be made in the next few months. As we move forward, we must focus on the university's core mission of teaching, research, and public service. With fewer dollars in our base budget, it is critical that we allocate them wisely. As I mentioned, we will update you on new developments as they occur, and I encourage you to share your thoughts with me. As always, feel free to write me at

Finally, let us not lose sight of the many reasons we have to feel proud of our campus. Last month, four undergraduates attended the international climate-change talks in Copenhagen, and our Stevenson College/Philosophy Department ethics team won the California Regional Ethics Bowl, setting the stage for them to compete nationally this spring. Just this week, campus astronomers announced the discovery of the most distant galaxies ever seen. Our biologists have helped pioneer marine-reserve policies that are now being used as a model in other parts of the world. And thanks to the generous support of its many fans, Shakespeare Santa Cruz will be back this summer with a robust lineup of three shows exploring the theme of love.

The optimistic spirit of UC Santa Cruz is alive and well, and as you head into a busy quarter, I encourage you to reflect on what you know and love about the campus. What first drew you to UCSC? What captivates you today? As you reconnect with that pride, I encourage you to have a conversation about UCSC with a friend, a neighbor, a relative, or a colleague. The story of UCSC is long and worthy. And there is so much more to come!