Sonoma State University has updated its 2004 economic impact study on the Sonoma County Equine Industry.

The report by the Center for Regional Economic Analysis (CREA) unveils a $613 million dollar industry that supports over 7,700 jobs, and provides almost $11 million in annual local tax revenues for Sonoma County governments from direct spending on equine ownership totaling $464 million. 

The industry includes training and boarding facilities, veterinarian services and apparel retailers, feed stores and events.

There are also ripple effects on Sonoma County that add to the equine industry's local economic footprint, says CREA director Robert Eyler.  

UPDATE: Read all the Convocation speeches at 

Read the Press Democrat's report on Convocation: 


Poised to become a showcase for innovation and a model for a 21st century public university, Sonoma State University welcomes the largest number of students in its history to the Rohnert Park campus as classes begin on Aug. 19 for the fall 2014 semester. 

More than 9250 students are enrolled for the Fall 2014 term, topping last fall's enrollment record of 9120, reports Sean Johnson, Director of Institutional Research. Johnson expects the figure to rise near or above the 9300 level by the University's fall census date in September. 
The largest freshman class - 1850 students - is also arriving on campus as well as approximately 800 transfer students. Primarily living in the residence halls, the freshmen arrive for Move-In weekend this Saturday and Sunday to begin their college career. To make their transition to college life easier, the University has arranged a series of Seawolf Welcome Week activities through the end of September. The schedule can be found at

bachchoir.pngDetails of the Schroeder Hall Grand Opening Weekend at Sonoma State University's Green Music Center have been announced, including ticket information for the free community weekend on Saturday, Aug. 23 and Sunday, Aug. 24. The weekend of free events includes more than 100 artists in ten concerts.

Admission is free to the weekend concerts, but advance tickets are required. Tickets are available to the public beginning Tuesday, Aug. 12 at 10 a.m. and can be reserved in person at the SSU Box Office, online at, or over the phone at 866.955.6040. A limited quantity of tickets will be held for walk-up sales on-site for the free community weekend on August 23-24.

Funding for Instructionally-Related Activities IRA) at SSU have been announced for the 2014-15 year.

The Instructionally Related Activity fee was enacted by the CSU Board of Trustees in 1983 to provide funding for "activities and laboratory experiences that are partially sponsored by an academic discipline or department and which are, in the judgment of the President, integrally related to the function of instructional offerings. 

SSU students currently pay a fee of $436 to support IRA programs. Before recommending support from the President, the Fee Advisory Committee (composed of six students and four faculty/staff members) determines a program's eligibility. 

Projects being supported for this academic year include the following:

ADVENTURE PROGRAMS - a low ropes course designed to provide experiential, out-of-class learning opportunities where both participants and student staff become better connected through the use of adventure activities focused on leadership, communication, problem solving, teamwork, and trust. ($7,800)

Shot at Burning Man 2012, this documentary helps defy the stereotypes of Burning Man, by following the unlikely adventure of two 60-year-old parents for their first burn.

The Sonoma Film Institute announces its fall slate of screenings, ranging from lively documentaries to international features and rarely shown classic cinema.

The season kicks off with the Winner of the Audience Award at the Sonoma International Film Festival, Taking My Parents to Burning Man (8/22, 24), in which first time filmmaker, 22-year-old Bryant 'Spry Bry' Boesen, follows his family's journey to the annual festival in the Nevada desert.

trio.gifU.S. Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-5), a member of the bipartisan TRIO Caucus, today announced a $325,000 U.S. Department of Education grant for Sonoma State University's (SSU) TRIO program.

SSU's programs include Upward Bound in Lake County, Academic Talent Search and Math Excellence Through Education Opportunity and Rigor (METEOR). More about these programs can be found at

olliplace.jpegWallace Stegner writes "...the knowledge of place comes from working in it in all weathers, making a living from it, suffering from its catastrophes..."

In her meditations on the Poetics of Place, Eudora Welty adds "...feelings are bound up in place, and in art, from time to time, place undoubtedly works upon genius..."

From architectural regionalism to the notion of terroir, many human values and cultural identities are rooted in the idea of "place."

This summer, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at SSU has been exploring "place" in Sonoma County through its art, history, landscape, food and wine as curators, writers, vintners, naturalists, scholars, artists, chefs and historians led talks and tours both on the SSU campus and in the surrounding communities. More than 200 have joined in the experience with 20 percent new to OLLI.

llcupwardbound.jpgThe entire Upward Bound senior class, from both Upper Lake and Lower Lake High Schools, have worked a long, hard four years of high school to achieve their goal of graduating and enrolling in college. While the Lake County Upward Bound program celebrates its sixth year of success, the nation celebrates the program's 50th anniversary.

"Achieving educational equity in this country is still worth fighting for," said program director Shannon Smith. "There is no other social program I can think of that can pull a family out of poverty in one generation, the way that helping a young person get a college degree can do."

Upward Bound students are required to maintain a 3.0 GPA, and cannot to receive less than a C in any core class. They are also encouraged to take Honors and Advanced Placement classes, perform community service, join clubs and sports, and serve as leaders in their school.

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