After spending over a year on the California State University, Stanislaus campus as interim president before being appointed to the official position in May, President Joseph Sheley’s formal investiture ceremony was held Friday morning in the presence of colleagues, friends, alumni, students, dignitaries, and community members.
President Sheley is officially the tenth president of CSU Stanislaus, one university of 23 that compose the largest four-year institution in the country. The investiture ceremony served as a symbol of the pursuit of knowledge, a tradition since the Middle Ages.
Sheley was awarded with a presidential medallion by CSU Chancellor Timothy White to be worn with formal academic regalia indicating his accomplishment.
“Here at CSU Stanislaus, President Sheley has immersed himself in the university’s traditions of diversity, inclusiveness and community engagement,” White said. “He is a wonderful ambassador for this university and its outstanding programs, small class sizes and hometown feel. And he is a compelling advocate for 21st-century skills — especially writing — which will continue to be a critical component of our graduates’ future success.”
With great power comes great responsibility, and Sheley has big plans for CSU Stanislaus and credits the university with unique opportunities based on its agricultural location and global impact.
“The Central Valley makes huge contributions to California’s economy even as we battle our own persistent challenges. Most of our students are from this region, and we want them, as graduates, to stay here and move the region forward,” said Sheley .
Sheley’s vision was largely supported by the array of speeches that preceded his investiture ceremony, with many colleagues advocating not only for Sheley’s intellect but also his integrity. Sheley has made forging relationships between the university and regional businesses a hallmark of his vision, noting the importance of a strong relationship between the university and the community.
Sheley cannot accomplish his goal of oneness between the community and university alone as he noted the importance of a collective effort at all levels to keep the university on an upwards climb.
“We are poised to pursue a signature vision. We are so close that I can see it. I can touch it. I have never been so confident of anything in my life: This vision of our one university, one community will be our legacy—if you will join me in its pursuit,” said Sheley.