2019 CSUPERB Leadership Award – Michael A. Goldman - (photo: Biotech Symp – Leadership Award)
Left to Right: Soraya M. Coley (President, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona), Michael A. Goldman (San Francisco State University), Katherine McReynolds (California State University, Sacramento & Chair, CSUPERB Faculty Consensus Group).
On Jan. 5, Professor of Biology Michael Goldman was recognized for his exemplary contributions to biotechnology programs in the CSU system with two separate awards. He is this year’s sole recipient of the 2019 Andreoli Faculty Service Award, and is only the third recipient of the CSUPERB Leadership Award in the program’s history, granted to him “in recognition of his dedication to and steady leadership of the CSUPERB community, ushering in an era of growth for the organization,” the selection committee wrote.
Goldman has a long history with CSUPERB (the California State University Program for Education and Research in Biotechnology). Chosen to represent SF State in the program’s Faculty Consensus Group in 2003, he was elected to the group’s Strategic Planning Council two years later and in 2010 became the chair, a position he held for eight years. He stepped down as chair in 2018, but that hasn’t stopped him from continuing to serve on the Strategic Planning Council.
Asked what accomplishments he’s proud of during his years leading the group, Goldman has a distinctly student-oriented focus. “We’ve been able to be pretty influential in pushing new ways of learning science such as active learning,” he said, as well as pushing an interdisciplinary focus by broadening representation in CSUPERB beyond biology and biochemistry departments. “I also think that we’ve been able to build a better focus on what industry needs from us,” creating opportunities for students and for funding.
Goldman has also been instrumental to advancing biotechnology programs at SF State. He launched and continues to help organize the annual Personalized Medicine Conference, which brings together over 140 scientists, professionals, educators and students each year. The conference, organized together with the City of South San Francisco, is now in its 12th year.
Part of the motivation for launching the conference, Goldman says, was to create connections and opportunities for SF State students in the biotechnology industry. “South San Francisco has the highest concentration of life science research companies anywhere,” he explained. SF State, just down the road, is a potential talent pool for those companies. “I kind of figure us as the university for South San Francisco,” he said.
And along with SF State Professor of Biology Lily Chen, Goldman established the Professional Science Master’s program at SF State in 2008. The program prepares students for the biomedical workforce, combining industry internships with training in the life sciences and workplace skills.
The Andreoli Award selection committee praised Goldman’s commitment to creating opportunities for students in biotechnology. “Through his committee work and program governance, he has contributed greatly to the effectiveness of CSUPERB in positively impacting biotechnology programs and providing access to underrepresented and nontraditional students,” they wrote.