September 21, 2023

Gearing up for Another Great Year

Dear Students and Alumni,

Happy New Year!

I hope all of you enjoyed your holidays and spending time with family and friends. Christmas is a very special time of year. I am blessed with three wonderful children who make sure we celebrate it to the full extent possible.

At CSU, each December, we hold a wonderful Christmas party for staff and faculty at the Orange Beach Event Center. At all of our staff/faculty events, different groups of staff will perform a skit that is always very funny. This year it was a performance of the “Rockettes” that included both male and female staffers. It was a performance I will always remember.

As I look forward to the exciting potential of 2015, I am also reflecting on some key things CSU has accomplished in 2014.

One of our early goals as a university in 2014 was to not just focus on our culture, but expand it to a focus on organizational health. Based on inspiration I received in reading “The Advantage” by Patrick Lencioni, we addressed issues of creating clarity, team building, communication and the priorities of the institution. CSU faculty and staff participated in various training workshops that proved to be very productive and thought-provoking. Organizational health will be an ongoing area of focus for me. I am fully committed to CSU always improving its family culture of caring and respect and it being a wonderful place to work and serve students.

Another thing we will continue to nurture and expand is our exceptional service to you, our students. Since the beginning of this university, we have believed that excellent customer service is a key part of our mission. Students choose CSU for the experience and it is our job at CSU is to continually focus on areas that we can further improve the experience of earning your degree. While there are plenty of choices of institutions offering online programs, it is our desire that none can match the experience CSU provides.

Going forward into 2015, we have an aggressive agenda and we are eager to accomplish a lot. We are planning to develop new course design strategies and standards to boost the course learning experience.

Furthermore, several departments will deploy strategies and technology to enhance faculty engagement with students. Similarly, we are working to improve the value of student communications and interactions.

With these strategies, CSU will continue to push the level of exceptional service we deliver. Helping us lead the charge as always will be our Outreach team members who travel to conferences, visit our many learning partners and interact directly with you. Please say hi to them at the Shot Show in Las Vegas Jan. 20-23 and the Piedmont Fire Expo in Winston-Salem, N.C., on Jan. 16-17. At the AGC Safety Committee Conference in San Diego, which winds down Friday, Jan. 16, representative Paul Radke gave two presentations. You can read more about Paul and the presentations here.

The CSU Outreach representatives, faculty, staff and I are so proud and humbled to meet and work with so many first-responders. In recognition of the recent National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day on Jan. 9, I would like to express my and all of CSU’s sincere appreciation for those who serve and protect. We have, and will always be, thankful for the sacrifices those in law enforcement and their families make to keep us safe and secure our rights. I salute you.

Lastly, as we gear up for 2015, I ask all students to please let your advisors and professors or any of us here know how we can make your learning experience at CSU better.

Thank you,

Robert Mayes