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Community Email Communication

Last updated on Mar 04, 2024

Emails shared with faculty and staff are included below as a reference. These emails address timely topics of importance to the CCA community.

Email updates from the Office of the President.

Update: March 4, 2024

To: All Faculty, All Staff, All Students

From: President's Office

Subject: Upcoming inclusion and engagement opportunities

Greetings CCA, 

I’m writing to provide you with an update on a few important initiatives and opportunities throughout the college. Our community has expressed areas of need that continue to emerge, and we are establishing new ways to create spaces for dialogue, discourse, learning, and growing together as a community. Many thanks go to our Vice President of Diversity, Equity, Inclusions & Belonging, Tricia Brand, who has led much of the work to launch these initiatives for our community. 

Task Force on Expression, Community, & Policy Launch

On February 2, I shared the news about a new Task Force on Expression, Community, & Policy. The group’s first gathering was on Tuesday, February 27, with a diverse pool of staff, faculty, and student participants from across the college. The goal of this task force is to identify how we can support and clarify CCA’s policies and procedures as they relate to various forms of campus expression. We will continue to update the community as the Task Force progresses toward their objectives. The Task Force will present their recommendations to leadership in April.  

“Showing Up Together” Workshops for Faculty and Staff
For the last few months, CCA has been seeking opportunities to respond to the current need to provide educational and training opportunities for staff and faculty around sociocultural and socioreligious identities in a time of deep social and political conflict. In partnership with EquipInclusive, we are providing two virtual workshops led by Dr, Amer Ahmed and Dr. Imani Chapman. 

The first session will focus on addressing campus and community Islamophobia, followed by a second session addressing campus and community antisemitism. This is an important learning opportunity for our staff and faculty to expand our perspectives, and we will continue to seek ongoing training for the community. 

Additional opportunities for dialogue 

CCA leaders have begun holding listening sessions to provide opportunities for support, dialogue, and reflection. We also recognize that many of you may prefer to meet in smaller groups or individually. Provost Tammy Rae Carland, VP for DEIB Tricia Brand, and I are each welcoming members of the community to join us for individual office hours or check-ins. We ask that those who sign up to meet with us clearly indicate what they’d like to discuss in advance of our meeting together. Please see more details included below. 

Check-in with the President at Maker’s Cafe

Check-in with Provost Tammy Rae Carland (please email Mary Aymor-Thuku at

Office Hours with VP for DEIB Tricia Brand

Listening Tour continues

My onboarding process continues, which includes regular meetings with individuals and groups within the community. As part of his Listening Tour, a Faculty Learning Network has been established to provide me with a direct connection to a group of experienced CCA faculty who deeply understand the culture, history, and mission of the college. In April, a second All Community Assembly will be held in which I will share some reflections from the Listening Tour with you all. 

Community Listening and Progress Page on Portal

Following our inaugural All Community Assembly held in January, we are creating a Community Listening and Progress page to track issues and CCA’s progress toward each area of concern. We will soon share a link with the community to provide updates and transparency around these topics.

Thanks to those of you participating in these crucial conversations and opportunities. In these important times, it is our collective responsibility to learn how to be in community together as we build toward a better future. 

All the best, 

President David Howse

Update: January 25, 2024

To: All Faculty, All Staff, All Students

From: President's Office

Subject: Thank you for attending our inaugural All Community Assembly

Dear CCA Community,

I am so grateful to each of you who attended our inaugural All Community Assembly on Tuesday, January 23. It was wonderful to have the opportunity to come together as one CCA in the Nave, which I often think of as the heartbeat of our campus. 

For those of you who were not able to attend, here is a link to the Zoom recording of the meeting. We also sent out a Padlet board and asked for responses to two questions: What are you most proud of about CCA, and if you could change one thing about CCA to make it better, what would you do?  Additionally, I’ll include the two essential questions that have been on my mind of late: What’s to be done? And, what’s mine/ours/yours to do?

Thank you for your honesty and vulnerability in sharing your reflections and feedback, whether in person or online. I want you all to know that I heard each and every one of you and take your ideas and concerns very seriously. 

I reiterate the words of john powell of the Institute for Othering and Belonging at UC Berkeley: “the stories we tell create the future we inhabit.” As we lean into this next chapter of the college, let’s remain mindful of the impact our words and stories can have on our collective future. Information can flow in all kinds of directions, and a full knowing of the details may be elusive at times. My hope is that we can all commit to handling our conversations with care.  

Tuesday’s inaugural assembly was just the beginning of an ongoing dialogue with each of you. Linked here is an updated slide deck outlining my journey as your new president. In my first 60 days, where we are now, I am listening and learning. The All Community Assembly was an essential component of this phase. As we move toward the 120-day marker, I’d like to once again gather as a community to reflect and imagine our collective future. Please look out for a calendar invite coming soon for another gathering this spring. 

Once again, I am grateful for your participation and dedication to this incredible institution. As I articulated at the assembly, I am wholeheartedly invested in this journey and intend to move forward with the following set of guiding principles: empathy, accountability, integrity, continuous learning, and a little grace. 

We continue…


President Howse

Update: January 16, 2024

To: All Faculty, All Staff, All Students

From: President's Office

Subject: Happy new year from President Howse

Dear CCA Staff, Faculty, and Students, 

As we embark on a new semester, marking my first full semester as your president, I extend my sincere thanks to each of you for being integral members of the CCA community. Approaching my 50-day milestone later this week, I remain grateful for the warm reception I've received and am deeply honored to serve as your president.  

These initial weeks have been rich with experiences. I've had the privilege of visiting classes, immersing myself in the vibrant academic atmosphere that defines CCA, and meeting so many of you. As I reflect on these early interactions, I look forward to the days ahead, anticipating more opportunities to be of service to you and to contribute to our collective future as members of the CCA community.

If you’re interested in learning more about my personal interests and experience, vision for CCA, and our growing connections to the San Francisco Bay Area community, I hope you’ll watch this new video interview filmed and edited by Film student Tariq Stone, and produced by our Marketing & Communications team.   

In December, we sent out an invitation for our All Community Assembly on Tuesday, January 23 from 11 am to noon. I hope you will be able to join us in person for the gathering in the Nave as we come together as one CCA.

I am very much looking forward to the year ahead, most notably the exciting completion of Double Ground, the centerpiece of our expanded campus in San Francisco. I want to recognize all of the hard work of our staff and the generous contributions of our donors who have helped us achieve this multi-year vision. I also recognize and honor your patience as we continue to make this important transition. Please stay tuned for more information about the official opening and subsequent programming this fall. 

This spring, we also welcome a new dean of Humanities & Sciences — Jacqueline Francis, previously the chair of Graduate Visual and Critical Studies and professor of our History of Art and Visual Culture program. TT Takemoto will transition from their role as dean into the new interim director of Faculty Development and DEIB Academic Initiatives role. Thank you to Jacqueline and TT for all that you do for CCA!

On a more poignant note, I extend my heartfelt condolences to the community and those close to our beloved colleague Peter Simensky, who passed away at the end of last year. Though I didn’t have the privilege of knowing Peter personally, I've come to understand his profound presence on campus and in the art world and the enduring legacy that he leaves us. The community is managing a range of emotions, and it is heartening to witness members of the CCA community coming together to provide support. Art in America included a beautiful tribute about Peter if you’d like to read it here.

We continue to navigate through so much as students, educators, and humans, and yet I am steadfast in my strong belief that despite the challenges and confusion that exists in the world, this is a time of great promise and possibility for CCA. In recognizing the impacts of the world’s events on our community and the need to come together with new tools and opportunities to work more collaboratively, we’re partnering with local and national experts to grow our capacity for dialogue and resilience in challenging times and will share more details as these plans come together. 

As we embark on this new semester, I wish to share three essential words that have been on my mind: curiosity, courage, and kindness. Cultivate curiosity as it sparks creativity. Foster courage, for innovation thrives in brave hearts. Embrace kindness, a powerful foundation for strengthening connections. At CCA, our diverse tapestry of ideas makes this campus such a special place. Let's embrace the enduring spirit of Martin Luther King Jr.'s beloved community, cherishing the ideals of connection across differences. 

I hope to see you at the All Community Assembly on January 23! Here’s to a semester filled with inspiration and growth.


President David Howse

Update: December 20, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff, All Students

From: President's Office

Subject: News about Chair Peter Simensky

Dear CCA Community,

It is with a heavy heart that we deliver the news of the passing of Peter Simensky, beloved faculty member and chair of our Graduate Fine Arts program. 

Peter joined the CCA community in January 2019 as an associate professor and chair of the Sculpture, Individualized, and Community Arts Programs and was awarded tenure in 2022. He became the chair of Graduate Fine Arts in fall 2022. Dedicated to arts education, Peter taught at numerous colleges and universities before joining the CCA faculty, including chairing the MFA in Visual Studies at Pacific Northwest College of Art in Portland, Oregon.

Those who worked closely with Peter have always been deeply impressed with his commitment to teaching and his evolving pedagogies. He held his students in high regard and created a space for mutual respect and learning in the classroom and the studio. Peter made an effort to understand students’ personal goals and guide them in the most helpful direction.

Outside of the classroom, Peter was an extremely talented and accomplished transdisciplinary artist. Much like his teaching style, his studio practice was engaging and inclusive. His work was playful and political, he used radio frequency, color, form and social practice to activate audiences and communities. During his career, Peter received a variety of prestigious awards including a Warhol Foundation Precipice Grant, a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, and residencies at MacDowell Colony and Skowhegan. 

Peter was deeply involved at the college and was happy to participate in panels and events. Within the Graduate Fine Arts program, he was an active member of the Graduate Advisory Committee and frequently participated in graduate Advancement and Thesis Reviews, as well as graduate Admissions and Accepted/Admitted Students Days. He also participated in CCA’s Decolonial School (2020-21), and the Lorraine O'Grady Reading Group at the Wattis (2021).

There is so much to share about Peter’s personal and professional accomplishments. Peter was such a treasured member of our community, an amazing artist, educator, friend, and colleague. He will be deeply missed. We are extremely saddened to share this news with you and hope you will not hesitate to access any of the resources below should you wish to do so. 

Our heartfelt condolences go out to Peter’s family, friends, and colleagues during this time. This is a profound loss for us all. May his spirit continue to inspire us in collective work here at CCA.


President David C. Howse

Provost Tammy Rae Carland

Counseling and support services for staff and faculty

The Claremont Employee Assistance Program (800-834-3773) provides benefit-eligible employees with support for a variety of challenges, including support with grief and loss. The service offers up to five free counseling sessions per incident per year, as well as multiple online resources. 

Counseling and support services for students

CCA’s Counseling and Psychological Services

  • Will be open and available for consultation and referrals until end of day Friday, December 22nd, 2023. Students who would like to be immediately connected with counseling services are encouraged to review the options available to you based on your current location.
  • Will reopen at 9:00 am Monday, January 8th, 2024. 

While CCA’s Counseling and Psychological Services is closed, support is still accessible for those who may need assistance.

  • Emergency: In the case of an emergency please call 911 or go to your closest emergency room.
  • Urgent Crisis Assistance (24/7): If you need to speak with someone immediately for a non-emergency urgent matter that requires immediate assistance please call our mental health crisis hotline at 415 551 9344. 
  • Additional Support: For additional Mental Health Resources and Hotlines please visit our Resources and Hotlines Portal Page

Update: December 1, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff, All Students

From: Provost's Office

Subject: Remembering Stephen Goldstine

Dear CCA Community,

I’m writing today with the sad news that former CCA professor Stephen Goldstine has passed away. We wish to share our deepest condolences with his family, friends, and colleagues during this difficult time. 

Stephen served as the Dennis Leon Professor of Graduate Studies at CCA from 1987 to 2002.  Many who have shared reflections about his time at the college agreed that he single-handedly “built the program one individual at a time” by engaging deeply with his students and colleagues. Stephen also served as the former president of SFAI from 1977 to 1986. 

It is clear upon speaking with several of his close colleagues and friends that Stephen made a lasting impact on his students and fellow faculty members. Many of his students have said that he is the reason they attended the college. He was extremely warm and engaging, listening to individuals’ interests with intent and offering words of encouragement to those who shared their passions with him. He truly believed in each of his students and supported their growth as they pursued their craft. 

Stephen was one of the first faculty members to welcome me to CCA and I will always cherish the day-long personal tour he gave me of all his favorite San Francisco inspirations. He was a kind and generous colleague who brought students and faculty together with connection and collaboration at the core of all his work. 

As we mourn the loss of such a wonderful educator, leader, colleague, and friend, it is wonderful to reflect on the warm memories and tremendous impact that Stephen made on the CCA community and beyond. We have included a few reflections below. 


Tammy Rae Carland, Provost

"Stephen Goldstine was the reason I chose to attend CCA's MFA program. A polymath with many talents, he knew both how to keep students' curiosity afloat and help assuage our fears. You always left his side and counsel with two more books to read, an introduction to a new friend, and an insight into a topic that you had never considered before. Any new idea I would come to him with -- whether it be wanting to study architecture, playwriting or needing to take time off from school -- he welcomed with aplomb. I'm forever grateful to have had an educator like Stephen help me through the vulnerable time of becoming an artist."  – Alexandra Grant, MFA Painting/Drawing 2000

“I am very saddened by Stephen's passing. Stephen was a giving and inspiring individual. He championed his students. He made us feel at home and safe in our artistic choices. I was blessed to have known him and lucky to sit down at a meal and spur about politics and life. There was only one of his kind and he will be missed by many.” — Rosalyn Myles, Graduate Student 1995

“Thirty years ago this amazing man looked up from his desk and smiled when he saw me (having never met me before) and said, "Hello, Kate!" as if I were an old friend. I had just driven across the country to visit CCAC. Little did I know how many doors he would open and just how much my life was about to change. Thank you, Stephen. I am forever grateful.” – Kate Randall, MFA Ceramics 1995

“He was so incredibly supportive and encouraging. At one point he said to me: ‘If there were Naomie Kremer futures for sale I would buy them.’ In the guestbook for my MFA show, which was in 1993, Stephen wrote: ‘So beautiful, it makes you cry.’ I was so moved by his response.” — Naomie Kremer, MFA Painting/Drawing 1993

Update: November 17, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff, All Students

From: Provost's Office

Subject: CCA policy reminder

Dear CCA students, faculty, and staff, 

On October 26, we sent an email reminding our community about the communications and dialogue policies that the college has in place addressing flyers, social media, and other outlets. The core message was that posts must not engage “in controversial or provoking conversations” that are distressing because they can cause harm to members of our community.

To date, CCA leadership’s approach to the application of these policies has generally been hands-off, relying on our community to be thoughtful, respectful, and responsible as we engage with each other, whether in the digital space or on our campus. Until recent events, we felt this approach worked well within our community.  

Now, however, due to the heightened tensions and our learning and creative community with diverse perspectives, a different approach to policy compliance is needed. With respect to our dialogue and expressions of perspective, we must align with our campus policies in order to ensure a safe and supportive learning and working environment for all. CCA will therefore be carefully monitoring and enforcing our policies as they apply to posters, flyers, social media accounts, and other campus-wide statements, whether made by faculty, staff, or students. If anyone has questions about these policies, the October 26 email (linked above) provides the information needed. We encourage those who manage CCA sub-brand social media accounts or distribute flyers or posters on campus to ensure that existing social posts, flyers, or posters follow these policies. If they do not align with policy, we ask that you reflect on the impact of these messages on our community and choose to delete or remove them to align with CCA’s policies.

Moving forward, if you believe that one of these policies has been violated by a CCA sub-brand account or on campus, please submit this complaint form

Additionally, under the leadership of Tricia Brand, the Office of the Vice President of DEIB has agreed to convene a small task force to take a deeper look at expression on campus, emergent practices, and how it intersects with college policy. More information to come soon. 

At the core of our mission, CCA is a place of creative and participatory action. As difficult as it may be, we must both support freedom of expression and diversity of thought, as well as ensure a sense of belonging and safety to all members of our community. Though we may have good intentions, our words and actions are causing harm to others—even if we believe firmly in what we say. 


Tammy Rae Carland, Provost

George Luis Sedano, Vice President, Student Affairs

Maira Lazdins, Vice President, Human Resources

Update: October 26, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff, All Students

From: Provost's Office

Subject: Community note on communications & dialogue policies

Dear CCA Community, 

Following up on President Beal’s message from October 10, we want to acknowledge that the heaviness and grief many of us feel about what is happening in the Middle East continues unabated. Indeed, for many of us, those feelings only increase as we watch the constant flood of news. We also want to acknowledge that some in our community have experienced personal losses, affecting family, friends, or communities they know, and we extend our deepest sympathies. If you are in need of support during this time, please see the CCA resources available at the end of this communication.

We also want to pick up on and amplify another part of Steve’s message: that how these events affect people may not always be visible to each of us. Which means that we have, in these emotionally fraught times, an even greater obligation to pay attention to the policies that guide the discourse in our community. What we say or do may cause harm to a friend, peer, or colleague, even if that harm is not immediately apparent.

There are a few different policies of which everyone should be aware, but we want to highlight these:

  • Posting flyers on campus: our policy notes, among other things, that:
    • “Posted material must clearly indicate the name of the sponsoring person or organization, date of the event/deadline and contact information. Materials that do not identify the sponsoring person or organization or the date of the event will be removed.” Posters or flyers promoting a viewpoint that are unattached to a specific sponsoring person or organization are not permitted.
    • Posters and flyers must also “abide by all college policies that include but are not limited to the student code of conduct, collective bargaining agreements, staff handbook and faculty handbook.” These additional policy and handbook documents address acceptable speech on campus, and there is additional information about this below.
  • Posting to CCA-affiliated (aka “sub-brand”) social media accounts: our policy notes, among other things, that:
    • Posts must not engage “in controversial or provoking conversations within social media.”
    • “Content should be reviewed by another full-time employee before it is published.”
    • And that CCA’s Marketing & Communications team must have the credentials on file to access and manage the account.

Lastly, with respect to our dialogue and expressions of perspective more broadly, we want to note an important part of the Faculty Handbook, because both the language and the underlying point applies to our community more broadly—especially in challenging times such as these. The language, from section 3.A., says:

The college respects every faculty member’s right to freedom of research and expression. The college expects faculty members to behave ethically in their roles, to be courteous in controversy and to announce their status as scholars or citizens when not appearing as spokespersons of the college.

We have bolded one specific element because it is particularly relevant to the way we approach each other and the respectful process we must all follow, recognizing that our words and actions can cause harm to others—even if we believe firmly in what we say. CCA’s Student Handbook and Staff Handbook include similar admonitions. For example, the Student Handbook “Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Unlawful Harassment & Retaliation” notes that:

Harassment is unlawful even if it does not include intent to harm, is not directed at a specific target, or does not involve repeated incidents. … A single incident, if sufficiently severe, can create a hostile environment.

Policies such as these exist just for moments like this: when situations on or off campus prompt unusual behavior. We want to remind everyone to please review and follow these policies to ensure that our campus community is inclusive and welcoming.

Below is the list of resources that we referenced above. We hope that you will not hesitate to utlize these services if you are in need of support. 

CCA Resources

Office of Student Belonging & Inclusion

Office of the Vice President of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

Counseling and Psychological Services

Claremont EAP


Tammy Rae Carland, Provost

George Luis Sedano, Vice President, Student Affairs

Maira Lazdins, Vice President, Human Resources

Update: October 25, 2023

To: All Students, All Staff, All Faculty

From: Lorna Meyer Calas, CCA Chair of the Board of Trustees

Subject: Meet CCA’s New President, David C. Howse

Please find below an important message from Lorna Meyer Calas, Chair of the CCA Board of Trustees.

Dear CCA Community, 

Following an extensive nine-month search process, we are thrilled to announce that David C. Howse (he/him/his) has been selected as CCA’s 10th president!

President-Elect Howse comes to CCA from Emerson College in Boston, MA, where he has worked since 2015 as Vice President in Emerson’s Office of the Arts, as the Executive Director of ArtsEmerson, and also serves as Special Advisor to the President; prior to that, he was the Executive Director of Boston Children’s Chorus. As David wraps up his time in Boston, we’re pleased to share that he will begin his role at CCA on December 1.

Through his work at Emerson and in the city of Boston, David is a widely recognized figure in the arts and culture community, acknowledged for his dedication to nurturing and advancing arts and culture. He has demonstrated his strengths in collaborating with an array of institutional stakeholders and managing complex projects, while also championing the strategic priorities of inclusion and belonging that are central to our vision, too. He is deeply committed to community engagement, and his professional and personal experiences make him the ideal person to further CCA’s mission at this important moment of transition and growth.

You may spot David around campus today, as he is here in person for a variety of engagements and meetings. There are two hosted community-wide opportunities to meet David this week, and several more to come in the future. Invitations will be shared today:

  • Say “hello” via Zoom today, Wednesday, October 25 at 2:30 pm (invite to follow)
  • Meet David in person in the Nave on Thursday, October 26 from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm (invite to follow). Light refreshments will be provided. 

I want to especially thank the CCA Search Committee for their hard work and dedication to this process over the past several months. After a thoughtful and rigorous process, David clearly emerged as our top choice and we are pleased that he has accepted the position.

Please join me in welcoming David to the CCA Community!


Lorna Meyer Calas

Chair of the CCA Board of Trustees

Update: October 17, 2023

To: All Staff, All Faculty, All Students

From: Lorna Meyer Calas, Chair of the CCA Board of Trustees

Subject: Details About CCA's Acting President

Please find below an important update from Lorna Meyer Calas, Chair of the CCA Board of Trustees.

Dear CCA Community, 

On behalf of the Board of Trustees, I am pleased to announce that Provost Tammy Rae Carland has been appointed as CCA’s Acting President, effective November 1, 2023, as President Steve Beal concludes his tenure on October 31 and we await the appointment of our next president. Her many years of experience as Provost and her dedication to CCA made her the clear choice for this appointment. 

Tammy Rae will serve as Acting President until the new president begins their tenure. Consistent with the role of an “acting” president, Tammy Rae will also continue to serve as Provost during this time. As mentioned in our last update, the search is nearing completion and we expect to announce our new president to the community in the coming weeks!

Please join me in congratulating and thanking Tammy Rae for taking on this crucial role during a time of transition for the college. 


Lorna Meyer Calas

Chair of the CCA Board of Trustees

Update: October 10, 2023

To: All Students, All Staff, All Faculty

From: President's Office

Subject: Statement of support and resources

Dear CCA Community, 

We all feel a lot of heaviness and grief about the horrific and devastating events that unfolded over the weekend in Israel and Gaza. We are especially concerned for those who fear for the welfare and safety of loved ones, those who’ve already lost loved ones to terror, and everyone whose safety is under threat because of their culture, their faith, and their hope for peace.

CCA is a diverse and increasingly interconnected learning community. Faculty may be struggling with how to address this moment in their classrooms and studios. Students may be experiencing anxiety in a violent and uncertain world. In times of political crisis and war, we may be seeking spaces to grieve, to understand, and to find comfort in community. We recognize that although our college is small, those who are affected may not always be visible. However, we share in the collective pain of this moment and want to ensure that the community is aware of resources that are always available to you, should you choose to reach out. 

Office of Student Belonging & Inclusion

Office of the Vice President of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

Counseling and Psychological Services

Claremont EAP

CCA Havurah - faculty, staff, and students email to join

The safety of our community is of utmost importance, and we encourage you to reach out to the Public Safety office should you feel any sort of concern or threat. They can be reached at 415-703-9512. If you or a friend need urgent assistance, please contact CCA’s Mental Health Crisis Hotline at 415-551-9344.

As this current crisis continues to unfold, please be compassionate with one another and take care of yourselves. 


Stephen Beal

CCA President 

Update: October 4, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff, All Students

From: VP of HR

Subject: An update on CCA’s COVID Vaccination Policy

Dear CCA, 

We are writing to share an important update about CCA’s COVID-19 vaccination policy. 

As of January 2024, the college’s COVID-19 vaccination requirement will change from required to “strongly recommended” for all staff, faculty, and students. The safety of our community is of utmost importance, and we encourage individuals to use their best judgment as we continue to navigate the impacts of COVID. For the latest information and recommendations, we suggest that you continue to review the CDC website.

While mask-wearing is not required, masks are recommended in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and the flu. If you choose to wear a mask on campus, they are available at the Public Safety desk. 

Reporting COVID-19 positive cases

Despite the change in the vaccination requirement, CCA is still required to report and track positive COVID cases. Please continue to use this form to self-report a positive case. You should receive a confirmation email with initial instructions upon your submission. You may also email Begin quarantine or isolation if appropriate, as soon as possible (you can determine if you should quarantine or isolate based on the protocols outlined here). You will be contacted by a member of our team who will collect information from you, guide you on your next steps, and alert anyone who may need to be notified. 

Especially as we enter the winter season, be considerate of those around you if you are experiencing any cold symptoms. Please stay home if you are feeling sick so that we can continue to keep our community safe and healthy. 

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the COVID Response team at

Take care, 

Maira Lazdins, VP Human Resources

Update: June 28, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff, All Students

From: President's Office

Subject: CCA’s position on the Supreme Court’s pending affirmative action ruling

Date: June 28, 2023

Dear CCA Community,

Many of you may be following the Supreme Court’s pending decision regarding whether and to what extent race may be factored into admissions decisions for both private and public colleges, widely known as affirmative action. The SCOTUS has twice upheld the merit of racial considerations in admissions in the past 20 years, and we anticipate that the specific ruling on the Students for Fair Admissions case will impact the use of race and ethnicity in college admissions. 

We at CCA know that a culturally diverse and inclusive campus is integral to academic excellence. We firmly believe in providing educational opportunities for students from diverse backgrounds and perspectives, and regardless of the final decision and the legal challenges to educational equity practices that may follow the SCOTUS ruling, our values remain the same. 

We are a community of artists, designers, writers, and architects with the vision to lead cultural change. CCA cultivates ideas and impact, educating students as change-makers through purposeful practice, and our focus on diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging is at the heart of what we do.  It ensures everyone has an opportunity to thrive. At CCA, students discover their voice, learn from peers and mentors, refine their skills, and completely reinvent themselves – all of which wouldn’t be possible without a welcoming and inclusive environment that seeks diverse perspectives.  

You may have questions and concerns about what the pending decision means for our community, and we hope to provide you with some clarification. Regardless of the decision, there will be no change to CCA’s undergraduate or graduate admissions policies. Our practice has always used a holistic review of each applicant to the college; we do not use specific data points to determine admissions. Each individual applicant file is comprehensively reviewed by our admissions counselors or designated graduate program faculty. Next, the applicant is reviewed for admission based on that comprehensive recommendation. 

We continue our commitment to understanding each applicant’s work, their unique and individual experiences, and their future potential contributions to the CCA community, and the world, as determining factors in their admissions to the college. Improving access and opportunities for underrepresented groups is essential and vitally enriching for everyone. We will continue working toward our goals to increase diversity among our students, staff, faculty, and trustees; to develop a pedagogy and curriculum that reflects social and cultural diversity; and build a campus community that supports and values diversity.

As the decision unfolds, we will be following closely and will continue to stay in communication with the CCA community. 


Steve Beal, President and CEO

Dr. Scott Cline, Senior Vice President of Enrollment Management & Auxiliary Services

Tricia Brand, Vice President of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging

Update: May 3, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff

From: Human Resources

Subject: Information regarding staff reductions this week

Date: May 3, 2023

Dear CCA Staff and Faculty, 

We’d like to share more details regarding the impacted departments as part of the staff reorganization. Yesterday, staff whose positions were affected by eliminations were notified and those individuals met with their teams and managers to discuss transition plans. In order to provide clarity around department changes, we felt that it was important for the CCA community to know where reductions have been made across the college. 

Below is a list of divisions and departments that were impacted by the reduction notices sent yesterday. 

  • Academic Affairs
  • Student Affairs 
  • Technology Services 
  • Advancement
  • Instructional Services 
  • Operations

In total, seventeen layoff notices were sent and this represents less than 7% of our current staff. As a result of department reorganizations, the college is creating new positions and has several vacancies already posted. We are encouraging affected staff members to apply for these new opportunities. 

In order to address the college’s budget gap and achieve a balanced budget, we have also eliminated a significant number of vacant positions. We understand that this will have an impact on our remaining staff and that it affects the reorganizations of our divisions. We recognize the importance of sharing more detailed information about department reorganizations, and in the next few weeks, we will begin outlining the reprioritization of department workloads once teams discuss their priorities together. 

Please note – we are canceling the All Staff meeting this Thursday, May 4, and instead are encouraging teams to gather with each other. It’s an important time for teams to connect and to begin having conversations with managers as our new structure and working relationships take shape. The next All Staff meeting will resume on June 1. 

We have scheduled meetings with the Union to begin negotiations on May 3, 10, and 12. We continue to follow the protocols of the CBA (Collective Bargaining Agreement) as we follow this process through. 

It’s a difficult week that is deeply impacting our campus community. We know that we all will continue to support one another as we move forward. As a reminder, we have a Stress Debriefing Session scheduled on May 5 at 11am. Please reach out to to RSVP. You may also want to revisit the health and wellness resources on our Portal and we will continue to update the FAQ on the Portal as a living resource. 

Take care, 

Maira Lazdins, VP HR

Update: April 28 2023

To: All Staff

From: The President's Office

Subject: Details regarding layoff notifications

Date: April 28, 2023

Dear CCA Staff, 

In Tuesday’s email communication, I mentioned that we would provide more details regarding the notification date for staff reductions this week. Through this process, we have been focused on providing information and answers to our community as soon as possible, given the many complexities that come with reductions and resulting organizational redesign. 

Next week, on Tuesday, May 2 at 9:30 am, we will send a direct communication to staff whose positions are impacted by the reductions. Those staff will be given information regarding severance and other resources to help them prepare for the transition. Shortly afterward, we will send out an all staff email confirming that impacted staff have been notified. Managers and HR will meet with individuals impacted to provide support and answer questions. Those individuals will be provided with a clear timeline and end date for their position. We will share a list of impacted departments and positions with all staff and faculty following this notification next week. 

On Thursday, May 4 at 11 am, we will have an all staff meeting for the community to ask questions and to provide any clarification on the process and next steps. There will also be two stress debriefing sessions provided by Claremont EAP on Wednesday, May 3 from 11 am to 1 pm in Room 103 in 1111 8th Street, and on Friday, May 5 from 11 am to 1 pm via Zoom. Details can be viewed on the Spring 2023 Communications portal page. 

As we communicate these decisions, next week, in particular, will be a challenging time for our staff. Please remember to hold space for one another as we move through this transition as a community. 

Thank you,

Steve Beal, President 

Maira Lazdins, VP HR

Update: April 25, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff

From: The President's Office

Subject: Follow-up to the Budget Information Session on 4/20

Date: April 25, 2023

Dear CCA Staff and Faculty, 

Thanks to those of you who joined us for the budget information session held last Thursday, April 20. As we navigate this process, we appreciate your continued engagement, questions, thoughts, and concerns. 

Some follow-up items

As a follow-up to some of the questions raised during the meeting, I wanted to point to a few specific items that were discussed. Please continue to reference the FAQ on the Portal for more updates. 

During this week’s faculty senate meeting, we will share results from a compensation study of ranked faculty salaries, including a disaggregated view of the entire faculty salaries budget broken down by budget categories and faculty classifications. 

We continue to add information to the FAQ related to CCA’s finances, based on both earlier questions and new questions that arose during the information session. This data continues to guide CCA’s decision-making.

Yesterday, I sent an email to all students to let them know that we’re taking important steps in order to achieve a balanced budget. I included a link to our Portal FAQ for those seeking additional information. If anyone receives questions from students that they do not feel comfortable or equipped to answer, please check in with your managers so that we can best address their concerns. 

What’s happening this week 

This week, CCA leadership will be finalizing the restructuring plans for departments, including rethinking and clarifying priorities and workloads. Late this week we will share more specific information regarding notification of impacted positions. 

Our HR department continues to communicate with the union to coordinate meetings to discuss the aspects of the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) that are related to these changes and specific questions raised by members of the union. 

Thanks to all of you again. 

Take care, 

Steve Beal 

Update: April 18, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff

From: The President's Office

Subject: An update regarding CCA budget reductions

Date: April 18, 2023

Dear CCA Staff and Faculty,

As a follow-up to our initial communication about budget reductions that was shared on March 29, I am writing with some more information regarding our progress and next steps.

Process update

Today, our HR department connected with our union representatives at SEIU Local 1021 to provide notice about bargaining unit departments that will be impacted by the staff reductions. We are in the process of scheduling meetings to discuss the aspects of the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) that are related to these changes. It’s important to note that positions will be impacted across the college, including both union and non-union employees at all levels.

Our leadership team is also conducting an impact analysis report of the recommended positions. This workforce analysis helps to minimize disproportionate impact on groups represented within our staff distribution across race, ethnicity, gender, seniority, age, and education level.

We are working with an anticipated layoff date between May 22 and June 2 to allow for the required bargaining period with the union as outlined in the CBA, and plan to provide notification of affected positions in advance of that date. We will share more specific information as it is confirmed.

Guiding facts

We realize that there has been a lot of information to process over the past several weeks, and we appreciate the questions that have come in. We continue to keep the FAQ page up-to-date with as much information as possible as a resource for the community. We also wish to highlight the following points:

  • We expect layoffs to impact approximately 8% of currently filled staff positions
  • We have 255 staff positions currently filled, including both permanent full-time and part-time staff
  • Financial Aid for students is approximately $24 million dollars from CCA’s gross annual budget for FY23.
  • After Financial Aid, the total net annual budget for CCA is $73 million dollars:
    • Staff salaries and benefits make up 36% of the FY23 net annual operating budget and equate to approximately $27 million dollars.
    • Faculty salaries and benefits make up 33% of the FY23 net annual operating budget and equate to approximately $23 million dollars.
    • CCA’s current debt is $32 million and our interest expense is 1.5% of the FY23 operating budget.

Opportunities for engagement and support

We are committed to sharing as much information as is available throughout this process, as well as creating more spaces for dialogue and discussion. I hope you can join us for our next Town Hall meeting this Thursday, April 20 from 11 am to 12 pm where the leadership team will provide more detail around college finances, student enrollment, and the FY24 budget. We will also share process updates, and allot time for Q&A.

In addition to the Town Hall, a follow-up supervisor session will soon be scheduled to capture additional considerations for budget managers. Stress Debriefing sessions will also be held each week through a counselor from Claremont EAP. These are optional sessions with the first hour focused on group support; the second hour can be used for individual meetings with the clinician. Please view the portal page for opportunities to participate in a session.

Next steps

I recognize that as we navigate this difficult reality for the college, it is also happening in the midst of a very busy time of year as we celebrate the many accomplishments of our students, faculty, and staff. The work we do together in the coming weeks will strengthen CCA’s financial position and our ability to deliver on our mission, and your dedication to our students during this critical time for the college is appreciated.


Steve Beal

Update: March 29, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff

From: The President's Office

Subject: Important Message From the President

Date: March 29, 2023

I am writing to share an important update on CCA and work we must do in the coming weeks to ensure a vibrant future for our college. While our long-term outlook is strong, we are not insulated from the current pressures being felt across all of higher education. Nationwide, colleges have seen enrollment declines due to a long-anticipated drop in the college-going population, which has been compounded by pandemic-related enrollment and financial challenges. New student interest and enrollment is healthy, but our recovery from the pandemic has been slower than anticipated and today CCA’s student body is nearly 20% smaller than before the pandemic.

Because CCA’s annual budget is heavily dependent upon tuition, decreased enrollment means decreased revenue. We need to adjust our budget now to reflect this new reality to ensure a balanced budget for the coming year that allows us to continue to meet our educational mission.

Aligning Our Budget with Current Enrollment
During the pandemic crisis we relied on college reserves for support but that is no longer possible. To achieve balance in our budget for the coming year, we must reduce CCA’s total expenses by 10%. The Budget Office will be reaching out to budget managers today with guidance on the reductions that must be made to their operating budgets. This information will be followed by information sessions to provide those managers with support as they build budgets for the coming year. These reductions will not be easy, but they are essential. They also will not fully close the budget gap.

To balance the college budget, CCA will need to reduce the size of our staff to reflect the current size of our college. These reductions will not impact faculty, as the size of our faculty is adjusted in line with enrollment each semester.

Rethinking and Reinventing our Work
To support this effort, Human Resources has started to work closely with division leadership to identify opportunities to rethink and restructure their approach to their particular plans, and to re-prioritize their work, which may include reducing workload to align with lower levels of staffing.

Over the next several weeks, we must think differently about how we staff and fund our educational mission. As a newly unified, residential campus anticipating the opening of a dynamic new facility in Double Ground, our budget and staffing models need to support an evolving model of education at CCA - one that serves today’s and tomorrow’s students as we pursue our mission to “shape culture and society through the practice and critical study of art, architecture, design, and writing”.

Coming Together and the Work Ahead
We recognize that these reductions will be felt by our entire community, and that CCA has experienced a great deal of change in recent years. The coming weeks will be a time for us to care for each other, not just as CCA employees but as colleagues and friends. We will honor the contract of collective bargaining for our union-represented staff as college leadership works with SEIU Local 1021.

We will move forward with thoughtfulness, urgency, and compassion, as we must complete our work by the beginning of the next fiscal year (July 1). We expect that the process of identifying the staff positions to be eliminated will take place over the next 45 days. I will share an update on our progress in mid-April, at which point we will have identified the affected departments and job families, and we’ll be reaching out to SEIU Local 1021. We are hoping to share outcomes of these reductions in May as they impact specific positions.

It is important that we gather as a community to process this news and discuss the work ahead. The leadership team will host a staff and faculty town hall tomorrow at 11 am PDT to provide an overview of the process ahead and open the floor for questions. Please feel free to also submit questions in advance anonymously using this form, which will be available as a resource going forward. This meeting will be followed by sessions for managers to provide them with information and resources. We recognize that this announcement will generate many questions so we have created a Portal page for the full community to access, where we will post updates and maintain an FAQ area, which we have started and will add to as questions arise.

Focusing on Our Mission, Our Students

Over the past several years, together we have laid the foundation for a strong future for CCA, and I remain deeply optimistic about that future. We have hard work to do, balancing our budget while focusing on the quality of education - the excellence - that our students, faculty, alumni, and community expect of CCA.

Thank you for what you do for our students, particularly at such a critical time for our college. The work we do together in the coming weeks will strengthen CCA’s financial position and our ability to deliver on our mission for today and tomorrow.

Steve Beal