Students present new website to increase faculty access at AS meeting

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Students present new website to increase faculty access at AS meeting

Arman Aivazian, marketing team leader for the CSUN META+Lab, during a 2015 AS meeting  Photo credit: Yvonne Zimmerman

Arman Aivazian, marketing team leader for the CSUN META+Lab, during a 2015 AS meeting Photo credit: Yvonne Zimmerman

Arman Aivazian, marketing team leader for the CSUN META+Lab, during a 2015 AS meeting Photo credit: Yvonne Zimmerman

Arman Aivazian, marketing team leader for the CSUN META+Lab, during a 2015 AS meeting Photo credit: Yvonne Zimmerman

Yvonne Zimmerman

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A new web program increasing the visibility of CSUN faculty and their accomplishments will make it easier for the campus community to get to know faculty members, a Matador Emerging Technology and Arts representative told AS members Monday.

Arman Aivazian is the marketing team leader for META+Lab, a team of CSUN students guided by faculty and staff to create web programs for their clients. Aivazian gave a special presentation at the AS meeting to raise awareness for the new faculty app that complies CSUN faculty members’ research, affiliations, personal stories and teaching interests.

“I really envision a large library of all these experiences that anyone — whether you are thinking about CSUN for the first time or you are a student here or you just want to learn more — you can just tap right into this, and it really helps promote the campus and the people within the campus,” Aivazian said.

Aivazian, one of two representatives speaking on behalf of their organizations at the meeting, promoted the project to attendees and said that similar presentations are critical to raising awareness around campus and encouraging the campus community to use the program.

Faculty stories, the first function of the website, presents short bios of faculty members from departments around campus, with quick facts, personal background, education history and reasons why they enjoy working at CSUN.

“Being one of the biggest CSUs … it can kind of get hard to maintain that feeling of community sometimes, especially when you consider we are a computer school,” Aivazian said. “So the idea behind faculty stories is to reboot that, bring that back to life, to bring that community feeling back on campus.”

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Arman Aivazian, marketing team leader for the CSUN META+Lab, speaks to AS members about the highlights of the new faculty app. Photo credit: Yvonne Zimmerman

The faculty app also contains a faculty research section that will be released soon, which will help connect faculty members to collaborate on research projects and define research interests.

Find faculty, the third function, allows users to search any CSUN faculty member by name or department in order to find their contact information, research interests, current classes and syllabi – information Aivazian said was difficult to find consolidated and up-to-date elsewhere. This database has all information already in the CSUN website in one place and allows faculty to edit the information.

Aivazian showed attendees examples of the information that was out of date in the current CSUN directory — information that faculty members cannot edit, making the new system critical for relevant material.

The website’s design is similar to that of the CSUN page designs, and the 3.0 version will be released soon.

AS Faculty Advisor Dr. Veda Ward, said that AS has a role in promoting the new program, since AS supports academic endeavors of the CSUN community.

“The variety of issues that AS deals with go into all types of academic programs… also AS has a role, I think, in supporting new faculty who come here, because a lot of the faculty members now are from diverse or underrepresented groups, and AS are the leaders who actually represent those constituents,” said Ward.

Although Ward noted there is some hesitation in making material electronic because it lessens the degree of personal contact between faculty and students, she said that a quick, updated website will be important in facilitating the conversation between both groups.

In a separate presentation, Linn Dahlman, project coordinator for the CSUN START Program, spoke about raising awareness with AS about the organization’s services to many students on campus.

START offers alcohol awareness video with chat sessions for students, in which they can participate at school on Mondays or online during the week. The goal of the program is to protect students against alcohol abuse.

START also provides rapid oral HIV testing for students in Monterey Hall and collaborates with organizations such as the USU and student housing.

Sevag Alexanian, AS vice president, said that having both presenters speak at the meeting begins the first step in raising awareness of services, and the MIND screens and other creative ways to discuss those services will continue to be explored in the future.

Other meeting highlights:

· AS approved a resolution to purchase new orange trees to be planted in the orange grove to honor AS Lifetime Award recipients

· Jia Guan was appointed as Elections Committee member

· Ashley Allen was appointed to the Finance Committee for the College of Health and Human Development

· Amber Spillman was appointed to the Finance Committee for the College of Arts, Media and Communication

· Jared Nassaney was appointed as Associate Justice

· AS approved the constitutions of Cinema Club and Korean Student Unified Networking (KSUN)