Cal State Fullerton President Fram Virjee has been recognized by the Orange County Business Journal as a local leader making a positive difference during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The journal’s annual “OC 50” typically highlights the region’s most influential business leaders, but this year’s list focuses on those who have stood out in their response to the novel coronavirus crisis.
Under Virjee’s leadership, nearly 45,000 students, faculty and staff transitioned to virtual learning and telecommuting within days. The university supplied essential workers with personal protective equipment and other employees and students with the technology they needed to function remotely. Now CSUF is in the process of distributing more than $41 million in aid from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
“It’s breathtaking,” said Virjee of the rapid pivot. “Nearly 40,000 students going on virtual instruction, 3,500 faculty moving heaven and earth to continue teaching, nearly 6,000 employees telecommuting … We have done amazing things in the face of incredible adversity.”
Virjee put people first in all decisions and communicated regularly with the Titan family. Throughout this period of uncertainty, he pushed to maintain campus traditions — even donning an orange suit for the online University Awards celebration.
While virtually celebrating the 2020 graduates now, Virjee also provides a vision of hope — promising an in-person commencement ceremony in the future.