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Fresno State University

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Fresno State University

California State University, Fresno
Motto Lucem Accipe Ut Reddas (Latin)
Motto in English Receive the light that you may give it forth.
Established 1911
Type Public
Endowment US$129.5 million (2012)[1]
President Joseph I. Castro
Academic staff 1,194
Students 22,565[2]
Location Fresno, California, United States
Campus Urban, 327 acres (132 ha)[3] and 1,011 acres (409 ha) University Farm
Colors Cardinal and Blue         
Athletics 19 varsity teams
NCAA Division I
Fresno State Bulldogs[4]
Mascot Bulldog
Affiliations California State University Mountain West Conference (NCAA Div. 1)

California State University, Fresno (Fresno State) is a public comprehensive university and part of the 23 campus California State University system.[5] It is located at the northeast edge of Fresno, California. The university has a total enrollment of 22,565 students including undergraduate, graduate, and post-baccalaureate students.

Fresno State has a selective admission rate of 58%. The university offers 95 Bachelor's degrees, 51 Master's degrees, 7 Doctoral degrees, and 20 different teaching credentials.[6][7]

The campus sits at the foot of the Sierra Nevada mountain range in the San Joaquin Valley. The city of Fresno is the fifth largest city in California. The university is within an hour's drive of many mountain and lake resorts and within a three-hour drive of both Los Angeles and San Francisco. Yosemite National Park is only 58 miles from campus.

The university's unique facilities include on-campus raisin and wine grape vineyards and a commercial winery, where student-made wines have won over 300 awards since 1997.[8][9] Fresno State is one of only a few universities world-wide that have an on-campus planetarium, operated by the Physics Department. Members of Fresno State's nationally ranked Top 10 Equestrian Team have the option of housing their horses on campus, next to indoor and outdoor arenas. Fresno State boasts a newly opened state-of-the-art Student Recreation Center and one of the biggest libraries in the California State University system.


Fresno State was founded as the Fresno State Normal School in 1911 with Charles Lourie McLane as its first president.[10] The original campus was what is now Fresno City College. In 1921, Fresno State Normal School became Fresno State Teachers College, and in 1934 it was renamed Fresno State College and adapted its official fight song "Fight! Varsity."[10] Fresno Junior College, now FCC, moved onto the campus with Fresno State in 1921 and the two institutions shared the campus until 1948, when the FCC moved to another location.[11] The first graduate degrees, in English and Education, were granted in 1949. In 1954, the 70-member Fresno State College Orchestra became the Fresno Philharmonic Orchestra.[10]

In 1956, Fresno State moved its campus to its present location in the northeast part of the city, and FCC bought the old campus and moved back in.[11] Fresno State College became a charter institution of the California State University System in 1961. In 1972 the name was officially changed to California State University, Fresno.[10]


The greater campus extends from Bulldog Stadium on the west boundary to the Save Mart Center and the under-construction Campus Pointe and Highway 168 on the east side. Vineyards and orchards designate the northern boundary of the campus, while Shaw Avenue designates the southern edge.

The 388 acres (157 ha) main campus features more than 46 traditional and modern buildings. An additional 34 structures are on the 1,011 acre University [3]

Fresno State operates the first university-based commercial winery in the United States.[12]

Henry Madden Library

Main article: Henry Madden Library

The Henry Madden Library is the main resource for recorded knowledge and information supporting the teaching, research, and service functions of Fresno State. Because of its size and depth, it is an important community and regional resource and a key part of institution's role as a regional university.

The library recently underwent a $105 million renovation that was completed February 2009. The library held its grand opening on February 19, 2009 and is now home to a variety of book collections. The library houses 1,000,000 books in its 327,920 sq ft (30,465 m2).[13] The library is home to the largest installation of compact shelving on any single floor in the United States. The shelves amount to over 20 miles (32 km) in length.[13] It is currently the third largest library in the CSU system (in terms of square footage), and among the top ten largest in the CSU system based on the number of volumes. It also is the largest academic building on the Fresno State campus.[13] The five-story building features seating areas for almost 4,000 people, group study rooms, wireless access and a Starbucks.[14]

The Table Mountain Tribe, which runs Table Mountain Casino north of Fresno, donated $10 million to this project. The library features Native American elements in its architecture. The expanded and remodeled library is among the largest libraries in the 23-campus California State University system and is the largest academic library in the Central Valley.

Public computers are available that run either the Mac or PC operating systems. Student, faculty and staff have access to over 200 wireless laptops, a media production lab for editing digital video and audio

and an instruction and collaboration center (Studio 2) for teaching information literacy skills. Reference assistance can be accessed by telephone, e-mail, instant messaging, text messaging, and in-person in the Library.[14]

The Henry Madden Library features a number of special collections such as the Arne Nixon Center, a research center for the study of children's and young adult literature, and the Central Valley Political Archive.[15]

Michael Gorman, the former dean of the Library, was the President of the American Library Association in 2005-2006. Peter McDonald is the current Dean.


Fresno State was the first of all 23 CSU campuses to offer an individual-campus doctorate.[12]

In the 2014 edition of America's Best Colleges, U.S. News & World Report ranks Fresno State 5th in public regional universities in California, 8th in public regional universities in the West (all the western states from Hawaii and Alaska to Texas and Oklahoma), and 36th in all regional universities, both public and private, in the West (all the western states from Hawaii and Alaska to Texas and Oklahoma.[16]

U.S. News & World Report ranks Fresno State's graduate program in Rehabilitation Counseling #13 in the entire nation.[7]

At the graduate level, Fresno State also boasts the following nationally ranked programs: part-time MBA, Physical Therapy, Nursing, Speech-Language Pathology, and Social Work.[6]

The Princeton Review ranks Fresno State's Sid Craig School of Business MBA Program #45 in the nation.[8][9] The GMAT score for students in this program averages in the top 30 percentile nationwide.[8] [17]

In Washington Monthly Magazine's "National Master's Universities Rankings for 2013," Fresno State is ranked #15 in the nation. This places Fresno State the third-ranked university in the state of California.[10]

In Forbes Magazine's "America's Best Colleges List for 2013," Fresno State is ranked in the top 44% of universities nationwide at #366. This places Fresno State 6th out of the 23 California State University campuses.[5]

In 2013, ranked Fresno State in the top 22% of universities nationwide in its "Overall College Return on Investment Rankings" at #335 out of 1,511 universities.[18]

Fall Freshman Statistics[19][20][21][22][23]

  2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007
Freshman Applicants 17,255 16,242 15,483 14,559 14,025 14,537 13,444
Admits 9,444 9,352 8,140 10,090 10,196 9,249
 % Admitted 58.14 60.40 55.91 71.94 70.13 68.79
Enrolled 3,139 2,925 2,700 2,765 2,821 2,644
Average GPA 3.30 3.33 3.34 3.28 3.27 3.25
Average SAT Composite 930 929 945 945 933 924
*SAT out of 1600 points
*2013 is preliminary



Fresno State is accredited by the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. The Lyles College of Engineering is ABET accredited. The Craig School of Business is AACSB accredited.

National rankings

  • In 2014, U.S. News & World Report ranks Fresno State 5th in top public regional universities in California[16]
  • In 2014, U.S. News & Wold Report ranks Fresno State 8th in top public regional universities in the West.[16]
  • In 2014, U.S. News & Wold Report ranks Fresno State 36th in top regional universities, both public and private, in the West.[16]
  • U.S. News & World Report ranks Fresno State's graduate program in Rehabilitation Counseling 13th in the entire nation.[24]
  • Washington Monthly magazine ranked Fresno State 10th "America's Top 50 Master's Universities" in 2012[25]
  • In 2013, Forbes Magazine ranked Fresno State top 44% of universities in the nation at #359.[5]
  • In 2013, U.S. News & World Report ranked Fresno State's Rehabilitation Counseling program 13th in the entire nation[24]
  • In 2013, Washington Monthly Magazine ranked Fresno State 15th in the nation in the "Master's Universities Rankings" with an overall score of 85 out of 100.[26]
  • The Princeton Review ranks Fresno State's MBA program 45th in the nation[7][17]
  • In 2013, ranked Fresno State top 22% in the nation at #335 out of 1,511 universities in its Overall College Return on Investment Rankings [18]

Schools and colleges

  • Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology.
  • College of Arts and Humanities
  • Craig School of Business
  • Kremen School of Education and Human Development
  • Lyles College of Engineering
  • College of Health and Human Services
  • College of Science and Mathematics
  • College of Social Sciences
  • Division of Continuing and Global Education

Smittcamp Family Honors College

Considered one of the strongest academic programs of its kind in the West,[27] The Smittcamp Family Honors College is a program providing top high school graduates from around the country and the world a fully paid President's Scholarship, room and board, as well as other amenities for the duration of their studies.

Admission to the Smittcamp Family Honors College is highly competitive and candidates must exceed one or more of the following: have a minimum 3.8 GPA, rank in the top 10% of their high school graduating class, have a combined SAT score of 1800 or an average ACT English and Mathematics score of 27.[28]

Smittcamp Honors Scholars must also complete rigorous academic and community service requirements. International study abroad programs are available. Smittcamp Honors College students receive priority registration for all courses, regular interaction with the university president, and special honors recognition at commencement.[29] The Honors College is named after longtime campus friends and philanthropists Earl and Muriel Smittcamp.

Student life


The Office of Student Activities and Leadership Development provides services, programs and co-curricular educational activities that give students the opportunity to develop skills and expand their knowledge.

Greek life is active at Fresno State. 8.3% of men are in fraternities and 5.5% of women are in sororities.[30] The most established fraternities are clustered in The Row, adjacent to Sorority Row. Student Activities & Leadership Development is charged with advising the four Greek Councils at Fresno State: the Interfraternity Council (IFC), the Panhellenic Association (PHA), the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC), and the United Sorority & Fraternity Council (USFC). Councils are provided support in the areas of programming, council management, leadership development, membership recruitment, policy interpretation, scholastic achievement, and public relations.[31]

The Kappa chapter of Phrateres, a non-exclusive, non-profit social-service club, was installed here in 1936. Between 1924 and 1967, 23 chapters of Phrateres were installed in universities across North America.

Clubs and organizations

Student clubs and organizations are groups that have been recognized by the university. Clubs and organizations can be based on academic, cultural, recreational, religious or other special interests. These groups are required to apply for recognition to receive support from the university.[32]

Associated Students, Inc. (ASI)

ASI is the recognized student body government at Fresno State. Through ASI, students participate in the governance of the university through fostering awareness of student opinions on campus issues and assisting in the protection of student rights.[33] Twenty students are elected each year. There are three executives who include a President, Vice President and a Vice President of Finance, nine at-large senators and eight college senators. Those elected serve annual terms from June 1 to May 31.[34]

ASI provides funding for student-related projects on campus. Sponsored Activities Funding provides supplemental event funding for recognized student clubs and organizations. The Instructionally Related Activity (IRA) fund provides funding for activities and laboratory experiences that are partially sponsored by an academic program, discipline, or department. Grants provide financial support for graduate and undergraduate student research, projects, and other scholarly endeavors in all academic disciplines.[33]

Student Recreation Center

In February 2006 the Student Recreation Center opened. Construction costs were paid for and operating funds are derived from a semester student-use fee. While an Association entity, the Student Recreation Center is under the direction of the Division of Student Affairs. The Student Recreation Center is adjacent to the Save Mart Center arena.[35]

Any student who has paid the USU student-use fee in the current semester is eligible to use the Recreation Center. Faculty and staff may join at a monthly rate. This facility is not available to the general public.

The center has four full-size basketball courts, a dance studio, a 1/8 mile (200 m) indoor running track, locker rooms, 2 racquetball courts, aerobic equipment, and weight-lifting machines. Services include personal training, group fitness classes, towel service and personal lockers.[35]

Intramural sports are very popular among students. Sports typically offered are basketball, softball, soccer, water polo, tennis, flag football, table tennis, kickball, dodgeball and racquetball.

Student housing - University Courtyard

Home to 1,100 students, University Courtyard consists of nine housing communities of both suite and community style living. Fresno State's classrooms, library, computer lab, student activities, athletic facilities, theater, Save Mart Center, Student Recreation Center and health center are all within walking distance of the residence halls.

University Courtyard offers a computer lab and an outdoor swimming pool. The Courtyard has lighted parking, an electronic room and hall lock system, gated bicycle racks and campus escorts. During the fall and spring, all halls have

live-in staff available 24 hours/7 days a week.[36]


In 2012, Fresno State was placed 19th out of the 25 most dangerous college campuses in America by the Business Insider with more than 400 property crimes for the prior reported year, 2011. The vast majority of these crimes were non-violent in nature.[37]


Main article: Fresno State Bulldogs

Fresno State is a member of the Mountain West Conference. The university's 18 varsity sports teams are known as the Bulldogs, and the school's colors are cardinal red and blue. Fresno State has made several runs at NCAA tournaments in basketball, soccer, tennis, baseball, softball, and volleyball. The Bulldogs compete as a NCAA Division I school.

The Bulldogs have earned the following NCAA Division I National Championships:

  • NCAA Division I National Champions, baseball, in 2008
  • NCAA Division I National Champions, softball, in 1998.

The Mountain West Conference is currently in the process of evaluation as a potential automatic-qualifier BCS conference in football.


FresnoStateNews is an online source of information about current events affecting Fresno State students, faculty and staff. The site provides an archive of news articles, videos and photos, as well as links to major resources on campus.[38]

The FresnoState Magazine is published twice per year from the Office of University Communications. It is both a print and online publication that features current events at Fresno State, Alumni Association events and alumni achievements.[39]

The Collegian is the campus student-run newspaper. It is published during the fall and spring semesters on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The online edition features video, podcasts and photo galleries.[40]


Two branches of the military are represented on campus at Fresno State: Army and Air Force.

Notable Fresno State alumni

A large number of notable Fresno State alumni have served in state and federal positions, become major athletes, or found their mark in business and media, including Joy Covey, the original CFO of


External links

  • Official University website
  • Official Athletics website

Template:Colleges and universities in California


Coordinates: 36°48′48″N 119°45′00″W / 36.81333°N 119.75000°W / 36.81333; -119.75000

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