College of Health and Social Sciences

students practicing medical procedures on a dummyThe College of Health & Social Sciences develops students' abilities to make a significant, meaningful impact on their communities and society. Through classroom learning and practical experience, they receive professional preparation in a variety of fields promoting health, well-being and quality of life.

The College is comprised of a wide range of departments, programs and schools with a shared commitment to equity and social justice. Students from our college can be found all over San Francisco — in schools, hospitals, social service agencies, government agencies, corporations and other settings — translating knowledge into action to improve lives on multiple fronts. For example, our students work in health screening clinics making sure children and the elderly have access to flu shots, they work with the formerly incarcerated to help them re-enter society and they put together makeshift workout centers in parks where families can exercise for free.

Faculty members at the College push the boundaries. Their research is rooted in a belief in the potential of scholarship to right a wrong. They engage in on-campus and community-based service that effects positive health, social change, intellectual growth and increased quality of life. In their teaching, they strive to cultivate environments committed to deep and meaningful learning experiences.

The College of Health and Social Sciences is home to more than 300 faculty and staff members, including 121 tenure-track faculty and more than 4,000 students in departments ranging from nursing to recreation, parks and tourism.

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Dean, College of Health and Social Sciences, Dr. Alvin Alvarez

alvin alvarezAlvin Alvarez was appointed dean of the College of Health & Social Sciences in December 2015. He has been an SF State faculty member since 1997 and was previously the interim dean.

Dean Alvarez has been a national leader in ensuring individuals from underrepresented backgrounds have a voice in the health and social science fields, and leads the College's efforts to develop a diverse, talented and critically thinking student body. His academic work is focused on Asian-Americans, racial identity and the psychological impact of racism.

Alvarez received bachelor's degrees in psychology and biological sciences from the University of California, Irvine, and received his master's degree and doctorate in counseling psychology from the University of Maryland.