Brian's Corner

By now most of the country has heard of the college admission bribery scandal allegedly spearheaded by William Singer. All of the worst stereotypes of college admission played out as coaches were bribed, essays professionally written, non-athletes became varsity stars, and helicopter parents (oftentimes celebrities) leveraged their wealth to ensure their privileged children were admitted to Ivy /highly selective schools.

As a non-admissions administrator, I’ve never fully understood all of the many steps in selecting a new class of freshmen. I can’t explain the various factors involved in considering the credentials of each prospective student. What I am confident about, however, is that our process at Cleveland State is above board, and is focused on student success -- from day one through to graduation.

In this issue of Viking Pride, you will learn about some exciting new initiatives and partnerships recently introduced by President Harlan Sands that positively impact current students, and will impact thousands more in years to come. Our region will be a better place as more young people succeed in their academic and post-college careers. And these new initiatives are just the start of exciting times to come.

In recent months, we’ve hosted a number of alumni events featuring President Sands. Our most recent event took place in Phoenix where we doubled the size of crowd we typically attracted – 100-plus proud Viking alumni. The president provides introductory remarks at each alumni reception and then accepts questions from the crowd. Judging from the quality and quantity of questions, our alumni are clearly interested in seeing CSU further advance. We appreciate their participation at these gatherings and look forward to many more (including Washington, D.C. next week) in the near future.

When asked “how can we help,” we remind alumni that there are many ways to give back to CSU. Yes, gift support is acceptable. I won’t lie. But it’s one of many ways you can contribute. As you read through this issue, I encourage you to think more fully about ways you can connect and contribute to CSU. Mentor a first-generation student. Hire an intern, or hire a graduate to work at your firm. Encourage prospective college-age students in your family and in your network to apply to CSU. Join an alumni chapter or attend an alumni event. Offer to share your expertise in a classroom setting. Make a gift to support a program important to you that helps today’s students succeed.

The college admission scandal led by Singer brought out some of the worst in higher education. Commit to CSU, and help us bring out the best.

Brian Breittholz,
Executive Director, CSU Alumni Association
Assistant Vice President, Alumni Affairs