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Don Coryell (left) and Charles W. Hostler will receive their degrees in separate ceremonies May 21 and 22. Don Coryell (left) and Charles W. Hostler will receive their degrees in separate ceremonies May 21 and 22.

Coryell, Hostler to Receive Honorary Doctorates from SDSU

Both recipients will be honored during commencement exercises in May.
By Gina Jacobs

As head coach, Don Coryell led San Diego State University’s most successful era of football and helped launch the university into the national spotlight. As a U.S. Ambassador, Charles W. Hostler worked to bring peace to one of the most troubled regions of the world.

In honor of their service and accomplishments, Coryell and Hostler will receive honorary doctorate degrees from San Diego State University at commencement ceremonies this May.  

Coryell, who served as San Diego State’s head football coach for 12 seasons, brought unparalleled success to SDSU’s athletics program.  

“Through his years as a coach and educator, Don Coryell exemplified the meaning of leadership, determination, discipline, passion, innovation and spirit to his players, SDSU, the community and nation,” said SDSU President Stephen L. Weber. “This honorary doctorate reflects our great admiration, respect and gratitude for his many contributions to the university and the greater community.”

Don Coryell coached Aztecs to three national titles

Coryell, a member of the College Football Hall of Fame, led San Diego State to two undisputed national championships and shared a third title. Following his career at San Diego State, Coryell went on to enjoy great success as a head coach in the National Football League for 13 seasons, reaching the playoffs six times and winning five division titles. He ended his coaching tenure as the only person to win at least 100 games at both the collegiate level and in the National Football League.

"Don Coryell is a true Aztec treasure and we are honored to have the opportunity to award him with this honorary degree,” said Joyce Gattas, dean of the College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts.  

Ambassador Hostler has been at the center of world affairs since WWII

Ambassador Charles W. Hostler will also be recognized with an honorary doctorate degree. Hostler served as ambassador from the U.S. to the State of Bahrain from 1989-1993. He has also served as deputy assistant secretary for International Commerce and director of the Bureau of International Commerce in the Department of Commerce. Currently, he is the honorary Consul General of the Kingdom of Bahrain, a position he has held since 1993.

“A skilled diplomat, humanitarian and educator, Charles Hostler was at center of world affairs from WWII to the Iraq War,” said Weber. “He is a true leader who has been incredibly generous with both his time and knowledge to help our students learn how to build a more peaceful future.”

Prior to his ambassadorship, Hostler served in the Army Air Force and was later awarded a Purple Heart for a wound he received in action during World War II.

In honor of Hostler, SDSU’s Institute on World Affairs was renamed the Hostler Institute on World Affairs in 2004.

“Charles Hostler has been, and still is, a tireless global traveler and citizen of the world,” said Paul Wong, dean of SDSU’s College of Arts and Letters. “We are thrilled to recognize his life-long commitment to cultural understanding and world peace with this honorary doctorate degree.”

Ceremonies to take place May 21 and 22

The CSU Board of Trustees approved both honorary degrees at its most recent meeting. Both honorary degrees will be conferred during SDSU’s formal commencement ceremonies May 21–23, 2010.

Coryell will receive his honorary degree during the Professional Studies and Fine Arts ceremony at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 22. Hostler will receive his honorary degree during the College of Arts and Letters ceremony at 4 p.m on Friday, May 21.