The California State University (Cal State or CSU) is a public university system in California. With 23 campuses and eight off-campus centers enrolling 485,550 students with 55,909 faculty and staff, CSU is the largest four-year public university system in the United States. It is one of three public higher education systems in the state, with the other two being the University of California system and the California Community Colleges. The CSU System is incorporated as The Trustees of the California State University. The California State University system headquarters are in Long Beach, California.
The California State University system was created in 1960 under the California Master Plan for Higher Education, and it is a direct descendant of the California State Normal Schools chartered in 1857. With nearly 100,000 graduates annually, the CSU is the country’s greatest producer of bachelor’s degrees. The university system collectively sustains more than 150,000 jobs within the state, and its related expenditures reach more than $17 billion annually.
In the 2011–12 academic year, CSU awarded 52 percent of newly issued California teaching credentials, 47 percent of the state’s engineering degrees, 28 percent of the state’s information technology bachelor’s degrees, and it had more graduates in business (50 percent), agriculture (72 percent), communication studies, health (53 percent), education, and public administration (52 percent) than all other universities and colleges in California combined. Altogether, about half of the bachelor’s degrees, one-third of the master’s degrees, and nearly two percent of the doctoral degrees awarded annually in California are from the CSU.
Furthermore, the CSU system is one of the top U.S. producers of graduates who move on to earn their Ph.D. degrees in a related field. The CSU has a total of 17 AACSB accredited graduate business schools which is over twice as many as any other collegiate system. Since 1961, nearly three million alumni have received their bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degrees from the CSU system. CSU offers more than 1,800 degree programs in some 240 subject areas. In fall of 2015, 9,282 (or 39 percent) of CSU’s 24,405 faculty were tenured or on the tenure track.