Inside Cal State Long Beach

My series on the university as a source of public good continues with a focus on the good work our faculty, staff and students do off campus to serve the region. In addition to teaching, working and studying, many in our campus community take on special projects, develop innovative initiatives and volunteer their services in the region. I’m especially proud of that! Each of the projects below (and many more) can be found on our new website

Safer and Better Solutions: Our engineering professors developed a software tool for the Long Beach Water Department that automates video inspection of its hundreds of miles of sewer lines. Previously, employees had to manually view the video in search of defects or needed repairs. Now, the software scans the video images to detect problems, with a 90 percent accuracy rate.

The smart road sensor, under development by a team from electrical engineering, will more efficiently control vehicle traffic and collect transportation data. An area for testing the smart sensors has been set up on Bellflower Boulevard. The new sensors are small, inexpensive, can be deployed anywhere, and will run for years without additional power. The smart sensors are being eyed as a replacement for decades-old inductive loop systems, which are large, expensive, and require a power source.

Marketing and Business Planning: The Marketing and Business Center (MBC) has a two-fold purpose. It creates networking, career development, internship and scholarship opportunities for students, and, since 2016, has offered regional small- and medium-sized businesses professional marketing services managed by CBA business students and supervised by marketing faculty. In summer 2018, MBC hosted a digital marketing workshop for 27 local small businesses and organized four Lunch & Learn events in spring 2018.

Education and Well-being: Students from teacher education, marriage and family therapy, school counseling, school psychology, school librarian, and school administrator programs offer thousands of hours of service in K-12 settings every year under faculty supervision. Our students are also involved in the American Reads and America Counts programs that tutor hundreds of local students.

Another important service from our College of Education is the Long Beach Trauma Recovery Center. The center seeks to improve the daily lives of people affected by crime and violence through evidence-based trauma treatment and case management for victims and their families in both individual and group therapy settings

The College of Education partners with Long Beach Unified School District’s Adult Community Transition Program to improve community safety, mobility, integration; self-advocacy and self-determination; communication and social skills; vocational education/employment; and independent living and functional academics for 30 LBUSD students with disabilities aged 18-22 years.

Students and faculty involved with our Center for Latino Community Health have worked in the community to prevent HIV/AIDS and childhood obesity, and promote youth empowerment, nutrition education, perinatal and maternal child health, and Latino educational success.

Health on Wheels (HOW) is a unique partnership between Cal State Long Beach's School of Nursing, the city of Norwalk and the Norwalk-La Mirada Unified School District. It is a school-based mobile pediatric clinic that provides free health care and dental services to the uninsured and underinsured children in the Norwalk-La Mirada school district.

The Colleges of Liberal Arts and Professional and International Education offer select Ethnic Studies courses to high school students. These dual-enrollment courses give high school students valuable credits for both high school and college — for free.

The Center for Community Engagement recruits faculty and students to volunteer in community agencies including AIDS Service Center, AmeriCorps, Boys and Girls Clubs of Carson, Casa Youth Shelter, Center for Asian Americans United for Self-Empowerment (CAUSE), CoachArt, Community Action Partnership, Community Development Commission, FoodFinders, Habitat for Humanity, Long Beach BLAST, and many more.

Dr. Jane Close Conoley is president of Cal State Long Beach.

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