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California State University System Archives

A guide to the California State University System Archives and related resources

California State University System Archives

Here you will find

  • Resources for locating collections and digital content in the CSU Archives
  • Basic information about the governance and the history of the CSU
  • Links to additional sources

California State University System Archives Digitization Project

Claudia Hampton, Robert T. Brophy, Glenn S. Dumke

Navigate to the Digital Collections →

The CSU System Archives Digitization Project began in spring 2017. In the first two years of the project the CSU Reports Collection, the CSU Public Affairs photograph collection, the CSU Oral History Project, the CSU Board of Trustees minutes and agendas, and the CSU Board of Trustees audio collections are being selected, digitized, and described from their paper and magnetic audio formats for inclusion in the digital project. 

The CSU System Archives Digitization Project is generously funded by The Office of the Chancellor.

About The CSU System Archives

The California State University System Archives was founded in 1979 with major collecting beginning in 1981. The CSU System Archives' collecting scope is limited to content of systemwide importance, often originating from executive and governing bodies including the Office of the Chancellor, the Academic Senate, the Board of Trustees, and other system offices and committees. Personal papers from chancellors of the system, including those of Glenn S. Dumke, chancellor during the formative years (1962-1982) of the system, are available in the System Archives. 

The materials types in the archives are largely textual in nature and relate to the operational activities of the system. There is also a public affairs photographic collection and an audio oral history collection conducted in the late 1970s and early 1980s by the CSU Archives Advisory Committee. These oral histories were recorded to capture the experiences of individuals involved in the early years of the System in the 1960s and 1970s. Additionally, there is an audio collection of recordings of the Board of Trustees meetings from 1962 to 1973.

Mission of The CSU System Archives

The mission of the CSU System Archives is to collect, preserve, and create access to materials relating to the formation and progress of the system. The mandate complements the efforts of individual campus archives to collect and preserve the historical content of their own campuses.

About the governance of the System

Board of Trustees

Navigate to the Board of Trustees page on the California State University website →

The Board of Trustees assumed responsibility for the California State Colleges on July 1, 1961. The governor, Edmund G. (Pat) Brown appointed the first sixteen members of the twenty-one member board. The remaining five members were ex officio officers. The System was formally established in 1960 by the Donahoe Higher Education Act. The Act established the Master Plan for Higher Education in California, including the Creation of a State College system. Up to July 1961, the State Colleges were governed by the California State Board of Education, Division of State Colleges and Teacher Education, at which time governance was transferred to the twenty-one member Board of Trustees and the System Chancellor. For the current reporting structure see the Board of Trustees page of the System's website.

Office of The Chancellor

Navigate to the Office of The Chancellor page on the California State University website →

The Office of the Chancellor is the headquarters of the CSU system. The administrative offices have changed and grown since the creation of the system headquarters. For more information about the current administrative officers, see the Office of The Chancellor administration pages of the System's website.

Faculty and student governance

The history and evolution of faculty and student governance can be followed in several of the CSU Archives collections. For more information about the current governing bodies see the links below.