Titan Magazine Winter/Spring 2017

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W I N T E R / S P R I N G 2 0 17



TSU Revisited Calling it “our campus living room,” Cal State Fullerton President Mildred García helped unveil the expanded Titan Student Union in October after approximately two years of construction. An additional 27,000 square feet of space includes new meeting rooms, a revamped east patio plaza, and an atrium that traverses the grand staircase and all three floors of the student union, with skylights and floor-to-ceiling windows that let the outside in. The expansion also incorporates sustainable design features, such as highperformance glazing on windows, energy-efficient light fixtures and lighting controls, and water-conserving plumbing equipment.


EDITOR Sarah Muñoz


Over the past five years, I have proudly and publicly stated California State University, Fullerton’s aspiration to become the “model public comprehensive university of the nation.” As word of that lofty goal spread — as well as the remarkable progress we’ve made toward achieving it — many around the nation began asking me what, exactly, a “model public comprehensive university of the nation” looks like. It is a fair question, and while some might argue there is ambiguity to the answer, no one can contest that our recent achievements over the past four years — a 24 percent improvement in six-year graduation rates, the opportunity gap eliminated for transfer students and cut in half for first-time freshmen, a greater diversification of faculty and staff, and the conferral of more than 10,000 degrees to one graduating class for the first time in history — puts us in the conversation of answering it. But as we near our goal, we seek to show the nation what the model public comprehensive university looks like, not with numbers or statistics, but rather with the heartwarming and inspirational stories of the faculty, staff and students who make them happen. This issue of Titan magazine does exactly that — from the high notes and high-impact practices of our choral program that has both the lives and voices of its students soaring around the world, to the diversification of teachers and the mentorship of women leaders, which makes us a springboard for upward mobility and hope for an ever-changing nation and the diverse peoples who call it home. So next time somebody asks me what the model public comprehensive university of the nation looks like, I’ll proudly cite the stories within these pages, as well as countless others like them, that capture what it means to be a Titan. It has been and continues to be an amazing journey, and I am proud the nation is beginning to take notice. Sincerely,

Howard Chang ’00

EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Valerie Orleans ’80


CONTRIBUTORS Debra Cano Ramos ’84 Michael Mahi ’83 Pamela McLaren ’79 Cerise Valenzuela Metzger ’93 Lynn Penkingcarn ’05


PRODUCTION PLANNER Andrea Kelligrew ’99

PRESIDENT Dr. Mildred García



Titan is the magazine of California State University, Fullerton, published by University Advancement for alumni, friends and the University community. We welcome your observations, news and comments. University Operator 657-278-2011 Titan 657-278-2414 2600 Nutwood Avenue, Suite 850, Fullerton, CA 92831 TITANmagazine@fullerton.edu © 2017 California State University, Fullerton Nonprofit standard postage paid at Santa Ana, CA. Report address errors to uarecords@fullerton.edu or 657-278-7917.

Mildred García President California State University, Fullerton


Volume 16, Number 1

4 Forefront 10 Athletics 11 5 Questions: Marc Stein ‘91 22 Class Notes 29 Throwback


1 2 Front of the Class Cal State Fullerton’s College of Education is employing a range of strategies

to prepare teachers for the classroom and meet a growing demand.

14 A Woman Walks Into a Room...

... and just like that, there’s a shift in voice, influence and perception. According to

the 2016 Fortune 500 list, only 4 percent of CEOs are women. Titans like senior and CSUF Society of Women Engineers president Paulina Mendez, featured on the cover, are rewriting the script for women at the helm.

1 8 Behind the Music Through singular opportunities, top faculty and a few high-profile allies,

the School of Music’s choral program is hitting all the right notes.




Univision Moves In The new on-campus bureau of Univision Los Angeles now serves the Orange County and Inland Empire Hispanic community while providing Cal State Fullerton students with mentors, internship opportunities and other high-impact experiences with bilingual journalists in broadcast and digital news production. The partnership is a continuation of efforts by CSUF’s Latino Communications Initiative to boost students’ career development in the competitive multicultural media job market. CSUF’s student news programs “OC News” and “Al Día” now also have access to Univision’s news feed. The alliance makes it possible for the University to share campus presentations by visiting scholars, leaders, artists and journalists with local Univision viewers.

Students and alumni of the University’s Applied Securities Analysis Program (ASAP) — many whose careers stemmed from their experience in the student investment management program — joined campus officials in the opening of the Titan Capital Management Center. A $1.5 million gift from Jeffrey Van Harte ’80, a business administration-finance alumnus and chairman and chief investment officer of Jackson Square Partners, underwrote the state-of-the-art investment center. His gift also funds the expansion of the ASAP fund that he helped create. “The Titan Capital Management Center is a classroom, as well as a business investment group meeting center and conference room. It’s a home for ASAP and will enhance Mihaylo College of Business and Economics, expanding the opportunity we offer students in experiential learning,” explained Morteza Rahmatian, the college’s interim dean. “It also enhances faculty teaching — and because of that, it will forever have a positive impact on student lives.”

NEW BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING, FOOD STUDIES PROGRAMS A new food studies minor, created with existing courses from the colleges of Humanities and Social Sciences, Health and Human Development, and Natural Sciences and Mathematics, is attracting students seeking careers in food tourism, health and geography. Its curriculum is complementary to various fields — from biology and nutrition to marketing. The College of Engineering and Computer Science is developing an undergraduate biomedical engineering program with a medical device emphasis. A $300,000 grant from the W. M. Keck Foundation will support the purchase of specialized lab equipment and curriculum development. The program will prepare students for careers as practicing engineers in the fields of biomedical engineering and assistive and rehabilitation technology to meet the demand in the quickly growing biomedical sector, particularly in Orange County and California. “The region lacks a broadly accessible and accredited undergraduate program with a medical device emphasis,” said Raman Unnikrishnan, professor of electrical engineering and the college’s former dean. “Our plans address this deficiency.” 4 I TITAN WINTER/SPRING 2017

Inside the new Titan Capital Management Center, made possible by a gift from Jeffrey Van Harte. “Vision plus collaboration equals progress,” he declared.

THERE’S AN APP FOR THAT Staying connected to CSUF has never been easier. Three new, free apps deliver information about the campus community to mobile devices. Each app — one for parents and families, another for friends and a third for alumni — offers calendars, campus news, event details, directions, giving opportunities, tours, dining options and more. Visit the Apple and Google app stores to download them.

Grammy Award-winners Doc Severinsen, left, and CSUF music professor Bill Cunliffe perform during the celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Clayes Performing Arts Center.

10 Years of Clayes “I’m not really getting any better, but I’m getting louder!” Famed trumpeter Doc Severinsen headlined the Joseph A. W. Clayes III Performing Arts Center’s 10th anniversary celebration in November, joining music professor Bill Cunliffe and the Fullerton Jazz Orchestra for a music-filled, hourlong performance in Meng Concert Hall. The event showcased the talent and scholarship of students of dance, theater, music, art design and technical production, and other disciplines within the College of the Arts through 15minute theater scenes, backstage tours, an art exhibition and the concert, all to commemorate the people who made the venue possible for the practice and academic success of CSUF students.

ALUMNI IN OFFICE Lou Correa ’80 (B.A. economics) was among more than 25 CSUF alumni elected or re-elected to public office on Nov. 8 to serve on school boards, in city government, and in the state and nation’s capitals. A former member of the California Senate, Correa now holds the state’s 46th Congressional District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

TITANS TOGETHER As part of its commitment to diversity, inclusion and equity, Cal State Fullerton has created the Titans Together website. This resource hub directly supports and builds upon the University’s progress toward decreasing its achievement gap, leveraging its diversity to prepare all students for a global society, and increasing faculty and staff diversity. Online resources include information on like-minded campus communities, University policies on discrimination and harassment, diversity workshops and campus maps of official safe-space areas. Visit together.fullerton.edu.



Students Headline ‘America’s Bandstand’ With “America’s Bandstand” as its theme, the 2016 edition of Concert Under the Stars raised nearly $1 million and welcomed about 4,000 University friends and supporters to campus in September as students from the College of the Arts — and one from the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics — came together to perform medleys from the Great American Songbook. Proceeds from the annual event support student scholarships and programs.

2017: ‘WORLD AT A CROSSROADS’ FOR ECONOMICS Before an audience of roughly 800, Cal State Fullerton economists Mira Farka and Anil Puri emphasized that the common thread permeating 2016’s “wildly unlikely events” was “a deep sense of resentment, anger and frustration with the status quo” despite gains made during the current recovery. The two spoke at the University’s annual Economic Forecast, “World at a Crossroads: Navigating Risks in Pursuit of an Ideal Climate,” in November. Puri, interim provost and vice president for academic affairs, pointed to examples of stress throughout 2016: concerns about China’s economy, worries about financial volatility and the Fed rate, the collapse in commodity prices and the presidential election. “Uncertainty and confusion seem rampant these days,” he noted. Job growth has occurred in high- and low-income sectors, Farka noted, but has been weak for middle-income occupations. Part of this is due to the loss of manufacturing positions. Farka and Puri predicted that the outlook for the U.S. economy will continue in an uneven, below-trend expansion. Consumer spending should continue to do the heavy lifting, buoyed by ongoing job growth, higher home values and better prospects for income and wages.


A $300,000 gift from a local patron of the arts is expanding the College of the Arts’ glass program with a state-of-the-art studio, an enhanced curriculum and guest artists. The glass concentration is being reinvigorated through a multiphase upgrade that will include a redesign of the studio to provide more space for students to work, as well as new, energy-efficient equipment that will allow students to properly heat, then cool the glass. The gift, says Hiromi Takizawa ’05 ’07 (B.A., M.A. art), assistant professor of art and glass program coordinator, “provides a creative learning environment that opens up opportunities for students to experiment and conduct research as we nurture these young artists to become innovative thinkers and creative problem solvers.”

Hiromi Takizawa

CHARTING SUCCESS Kicking off the fall semester, Cal State Fullerton President Mildred García welcomed more than 60 new tenure-track faculty members and lecturers to the Titan family during convocation. She also shared with the campus community that the University has eliminated the achievement gap for transfer students while cutting it in half for first-time freshmen. During a reception at El Dorado Ranch, the president also celebrated the work of the University’s 10 Student Success Teams in increasing student persistence and graduation rates.






Titan Fund Call Center student callers, including supervisor Rachael Stickles, foster relationships and build connections in support of Titan Fund.

Giving Back Through Titan Fund Hundreds of students spanning a slew of majors have worked for the phonathon program known as the Titan Fund Call Center over the past decade. Titan Fund shares information about campus advancements, programs and initiatives while raising funds for the University’s greatest needs; money raised supports each of the eight colleges, as well as academic programs, scholarships, Titan Athletics and the Pollak Library. With her brand-new diploma in hand, sociology alumna Rachael Stickles is looking back with pride at her role as supervisor of the call center: HOW IT WORKS “We call alumni, parents and friends of Cal State Fullerton, talk to them about how they feel about the University and let them know that there are ways they can give back to programs they care about.”



To learn more, visit giving.fullerton.edu.

FAVORITE PART OF THE JOB “Talking to alumni. You hear a lot of interesting stories and learn what they’re doing now. We get to talk to so many people who are grateful and thankful to Cal State Fullerton, and you get to see what kind of things they care about. “Also, just seeing how much money we raise and where it’s going is great. You don’t think about it when you are talking to an individual person, but when you see how much it is when you add it up — and where it’s going — that’s really impactful.” A MEMORABLE CALL “After a great conversation, a prospect told a student caller, ‘I’ll give $100 to my college and $100 to your college.’ Which is so cool, and also special for the student caller. “In the three years that I have worked here, 99 percent of the calls I’ve had have been positive. A lot of them end that way — you make a really great connection with someone and they will give more, or show an interest in what we are doing as students. “As a caller, you get to learn so much more about the University — how it works and the different resources that are available to students. We get to feel like we are making a big impact not only to students like ourselves, but to future ones.”


Strength in Numbers


As the student population grows at Cal State Fullerton, so does its alumni network. Leading the way to strengthen campus, alumni and community relations is the 2016-17 CSUF Alumni Association Board of Directors. Officers are: PRESIDENT Michael Bader, J.D., MBA, CPA ’79 (B.A. business administration-accounting) PAST PRESIDENT Dung Vu ’04 (B.A. business administration-finance) PRESIDENT ELECT Vanessa Acuña ’02, ’03 (B.A. liberal studies, multiple subject credential,

M.S. education-educational administration)




M.A. mathematics)

VICE PRESIDENT, FINANCE Mark Krikorian ’79 (B.A. business administration-accounting) VICE PRESIDENT, PROGRAMS Sylvia Contreras ’96 (B.A. communications-advertising) VICE PRESIDENT, STUDENT ALUMNI ENGAGEMENT Brateil Aghasi ’05 (B.A. sociology

and women’s studies)

To become a board member in 2017-18, visit alumni.fullerton.edu/aboutus/applicants for information about the nomination and application process.




Vision & Visionaries, recognizing alumni and community honorees

New York Showcase & Reception

Night of the Pachyderm

MARCH 10 & 11 Dinner With 12 Titans

Alumni Receptions DC and NY

APRIL 4 & 6

To learn more, visit alumni.fullerton.edu.


AUGUST 4-12 Alumni trip to France DECEMBER 2 10th Annual Homecoming

President Mildred García was appointed chair-elect of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) board in November and will serve as chair in 2018. Her leadership with AASCU includes serving on its board of directors, chairing the Committee on International Education, and serving as a Millennium Leadership Initiative mentor and chair of the MLI Executive Steering Committee. President García also was honored in November with the Region VI President’s Award from NASPA — Student Affairs Educators in Higher Education, the leading association for the advancement, health and sustainability of student life on campus through its support of student affairs staff and programs. The recognition is bestowed upon a college or university president who has advanced the quality of student life on campus by supporting student affairs staff and programs. In October, García became one of 25 leaders in higher education recognized as “Hispanic Leaders and Role Models in Higher Education.” Her selection, made by Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education, reflects her standing among peers across the nation.

A Grateful Campus Bids Farewell Jewel Plummer Cobb was a transformative presence on campus and in higher education. A scientist, cancer researcher and educator, she served as Cal State Fullerton’s third president from October 1981 to August 1990. Cobb was also the first AfricanAmerican woman to lead a major university in the West Coast. “President Cobb recognized the importance of equitable access to higher education long before it was part of the national conversation,” says CSUF President Mildred García. “She worked tirelessly and collaboratively across all divisions and colleges to not only enhance existing programs for disadvantaged students, but also create new ones that provided funding for grants and fellowships for underrepresented, low-income and first-generation students.” Cobb is remembered for many accomplishments on- and off-campus, including a few firsts for Cal State Fullerton. She established the University’s first endowed professorship and helped create some of CSUF’s first student and faculty exchange agreements with universities around the world. She was also successful in securing funds to construct many of the buildings and centers that now make up the heart of the University, including the Engineering and Computer Science buildings, the Ruby Gerontology Center and a satellite campus in Mission Viejo. She also negotiated an agreement with the Marriott Corp. and the City of Fullerton to lease campus land for a hotel, which provided the funding for the University’s sports complex. This was the first partnership of its kind for a public university. During her tenure as president, Cobb also pushed for state legislation that allowed the University to sell bonds to build its first residence halls, which now bear her name. This accomplishment was of particular significance to her. The granddaughter of a freed slave and the daughter of college graduates — a doctor and a

schoolteacher — Cobb left the University of Michigan when she found out that black students were segregated into one dormitory. “The primary intellectual interchange occurs in the classrooms and the laboratory, but education doesn’t get turned off like a water faucet when the student leaves the classroom,” she told the Los Angeles Times in 1991. “What happens after the student leaves the classroom is important; living in on-campus housing plays no small part in making enjoyable the student’s academic year.” Cobb transferred to Talladega College in Alabama, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in biology, then received her master’s degree and doctorate in cell physiology from New York University. She then embarked on an impressive career as a faculty member at the University of Illinois, Sarah Lawrence College and New York University. Later, while continuing to teach and conduct research, she launched her administrative career at Connecticut College and Rutgers University before arriving at Cal State Fullerton. “... She provided balance between tradition and innovation, balance between efficiency and warmth, balance between town and gown,” said professor emeritus

of sociology John W. Bedell during her retirement dinner. “Yet, at all times she has kept the needs of the students our reason for being first and foremost in the minds of all of us who are part of the ‘Fullerton Family.’” Cobb died Jan. 1 at the age of 92 after serving thousands of students over her lifetime. Titans continue to build upon her inspirational legacy of leadership and far-reaching vision. To donate to the Jewel Plummer Cobb Scholarship Endowment, visit giving.fullerton.edu.




WHAT A YEAR IT WAS. In 2015-16, Titan Athletics scored records on and off the field, illustrating the determination of the student-athletes, coaches and fans of Cal State Fullerton’s athletics programs. Four teams (baseball, softball, women’s soccer and men’s soccer) won Big West Conference championships in 2015-16 — the most conference champion teams since the 1986-87 season. Track and field, cross country and women’s tennis all had their most successful seasons in school history, while the dance team won its 15th Universal Dance Association national championship. Titans have been equally impressive in the classroom and in the community. Men’s basketball’s Kennedy Esume and women’s soccer’s Morgan Batcheller were named 2015-16 Big West Conference Scholar-Athletes of the Year. Seventy-seven student-athletes earned degrees spanning 22 majors — an increase of 10 percent from a year ago, with six graduating with honors. Fifty-four student-athletes received either Big West or Mountain Pacific Sports Federation All-Academic awards. Titan student-athletes completed 1,482 hours of community service, engaging with youth throughout the region, especially in Orange County. They promoted reading in local elementary schools through the Titan Tales program and volunteered with such organizations as CHOC Children’s, Coast to Coast Foundation, Santa Ana Boys and Girls Club, and Love Fullerton. They also provided free clinics for the Challenger Baseball League and Soccer for Hope. 10 I TITAN WINTER/SPRING 2017

Fundraising and sponsorship efforts to support student-athletes broke records as more than $1.4 million was raised during the 201516 school year. In the last 40 months, Athletics has raised more than $4 million. Additionally, cash sponsorships increased by $50,000 to $271,000. Corporate sponsorships in the last four years have increased nearly 20 percent each year. Increased funding from a variety of sources helped support the campaign for upgrading facilities. As part of the Student Success Initiative, Athletics added state-of-the-art LED lighting to the east and west intramural fields, and in a collaborative effort between Athletics and the divisions of Student Affairs and Administration & Finance, Titan Stadium received a face-lift that included 11 large-format graphics and dimensional LED signage. Upgraded facilities and winning sports programs have translated into increased ticket sales. Titan Athletics marketing has been leading an effort that has resulted in student attendance increasing nearly 1,200 percent — from just 1,200 student visitors in 2012-13 to more than 14,000 this past year. So what’s in store for this year? Fall sports have already wrapped up their seasons, and winter and spring sports are either underway or getting ready to start the 2016-17 campaigns. And if last year is any indicator, it should be another one for the record books. MICHAEL MAHI

Noah Graham (Getty Photos/Golden State Warriors)


MEET THE PRESS MARC STEIN ’91 (B.A. communications) is known for Titan mentions in his tweets and for his work as a senior NBA reporter for ESPN. He proudly dons CSUF gear often, even at the 2016 Summer Olympics while covering Team USA basketball in Rio de Janeiro for the network. “I love my school dearly and have always taken great pride in what a journalism factory it was in the ’70s and ’80s,” says the 2006 Distinguished Alumnus Award recipient. We caught up with the three-time Olympic reporter at the start of his 15th season covering the NBA for ESPN. WHAT WAS MOST EXCITING ABOUT COVERING TEAM USA BASKETBALL AT THE 2016 OLYMPICS?

I absolutely love international basketball — love the people, love seeing how much representing one’s country means to these players, love how passionate crowds can get. The competition exceeded all expectations and featured ex-Titan scoring machine Josh Akognon as a member of Team Nigeria. Josh and I had a couple of nice visits in Rio; it meant a lot to both of us to be repping our school in Brazil. WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO GO INTO SPORTS JOURNALISM?

I legitimately knew from the age of 9 exactly what I wanted to be if I wasn’t going to make it as a professional athlete. Once I turned 13, my plan got even clearer: I was determined to make the professional tennis tour as a traveling reporter if I couldn’t make it with my racket. I realized that dream by starting out as a tennis writer before moving to the NBA beat halfway through the 1993-94 season. HOW DID CSUF PREPARE YOU FOR YOUR CAREER?

We were a very proud Daily Titan staff that insisted on taking no wire copy and almost exclusively covering events on campus or related in some way to CSUF. Because so many Daily Titan staffers worked professionally at real newspapers on the side — especially sports writers — it was a very competitive environment. We all pushed each other to produce the best possible school newspaper.


My relationship with then-Daily Titan adviser Jay Berman dates to a high school journalism camp I attended when I was 16. He was one of the leading instructors at that camp, and has been one of the strongest journalistic influences in my life. To this day, I still have his voice in my head. Rick Pullen, then the dean of the College of Communications, recognized my hunger and ambition at an early age and, instead of trying to rein all that in, encouraged me to aim high and did everything he could to put me in positions to succeed. I love them both dearly. WHAT SKILLS DO YOU CONSIDER ESSENTIAL FOR TODAY’S COLLEGE OF COMMUNICATIONS GRADUATE?

Versatility is crucial. This is the digital age, so you have to be adept at producing all kinds of content. Embrace every new social media tool that comes along, because you never know which is the one that will change the landscape quickly. I encourage any student serious about a media career to try everything: Daily Titan, TV, radio, you name it. CERISE VALENZUELA METZGER

“I always try to help CSUF students who reach out to me,” said Marc Stein ‘91, seen here interviewing Golden State star Draymond Green for ESPN’s “SportsCenter” during the 2016 NBA playoffs.


FRONT OF THE CLASS Tackling the Teacher Shortage


IN HIGH SCHOOL, Mark Bibian’s literature teacher, Mrs. Johnston, inspired him to consider a career in teaching. Bibian recalls reading Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein,” a novel from 1818. “She encouraged us to view the world differently and relate it to events that were current,” says the Cal State Fullerton junior. “I want to show my students what makes literature timeless and relevant, just as Mrs. Johnston did for me in my adolescence. Her passion for literature was reflected in the way she taught it to her students.” In his sophomore year of college, Bibian became an English major and committed to becoming a high school English teacher. Today, he is on an academic pathway to earn his bachelor’s degree, while also taking the prerequisites for the University’s single subject credential program in English. Completing the prerequisite courses will enable Bibian to gain competency in the subject matter and transition into the one-year teacher preparation program after he graduates. By becoming a teacher, Bibian also will help address the shortage of teachers needed for California’s classrooms. The state — and nation — are facing a teacher shortage, mainly due to the recession, severe school district budget cuts, teacher layoffs and retirements. School districts statewide projected the need to hire more than 22,000 teachers in 2016-17, yet only about 15,000 new teaching credentials were issued, according to the California Department of Education. “At Cal State Fullerton, we’re taking the approach of not just filling the need for more teachers,” says Lisa Kirtman, dean of the College of Education. “We want to make sure these teaching positions are filled with strong, qualified teachers — educators who are prepared to be excellent teachers, who believe in just, equitable and inclusive education, and who are skilled in integrating technology in the classroom.”

ADDRESSING THE SHORTAGE To tackle this workforce gap and recruit and prepare quality pre-K through 12thgrade teachers, the College of Education is deploying a range of strategies and innovative programs. These include strengthening recruitment efforts to high school and undergraduate students; promoting a clear academic path to teacher preparation programs; offering professional development workshops to boost teacher retention; providing student-teacher mentorship opportunities; and increasing the number of underrepresented students in the teaching profession. “We’re trying to identify students earlier in the pipeline — even before they come to Cal State Fullerton — to remove barriers to becoming a teacher,” says Aimee Nelson, director of the Center for Careers in Teaching. “The pathway to the teaching profession is unique in California, so we must connect students early with support and guidance.” Typically, teacher candidates in California must first earn a bachelor’s degree and then enter a postbaccalaureate teacher preparation program — often a five- to seven-year process — to teach at the elementary, middle school and high school levels. To address the challenges facing teacher recruitment and retention, the Center for Careers in Teaching conducts routine outreach and recruitment efforts at local high schools and community college campuses. “This approach gives students a more detailed picture of the teaching profession and the time to make decisions about their future career path,” Nelson says. It also provides incoming freshmen and undergraduates with information about prerequisites they need to complete for a seamless transition into one of the University’s teacher preparation programs. A new mentorship program also pairs undergraduates across all majors with local veteran educators so students can

“Having my own classroom is a dream come true. CSUF’s credential program taught me how to set up a meaningful, interactive classroom environment to meet the needs of all students, and also prepared me to be a flexible, inclusive educator who can teach in each of the academic content areas.” — Caitlyn Bos ‘15, ‘16 (B.A. communication studies, multiple subject credential program), left. Bos landed her first teaching position in fall 2016 at Mariposa Elementary School in Brea.

gain insight and exposure to classroom teaching before entering a credential program. Finding ways to help students prepare and pay for the state tests required to enter a teaching credential program and offering financial aid options also are some of the solutions the college is exploring to help recruit future teachers, notes Kirtman. Additionally, the dean has started her own personal recruitment efforts by giving informal presentations to campus student clubs and organizations. “I want undergraduates to know about the great rewards in teaching,” she explains.

DIVERSITY IN THE CLASSROOM Another pressing issue facing education is the lack of diversity in the profession, Kirtman adds. Cal State Fullerton is one of 10 U.S. institutions participating in the Black & Hispanic/Latino Male Teachers Initiative, part of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education’s “Networked Improvement Community” aimed at improving the nation’s schools. The center’s goal is to recruit 25 percent more black and Hispanic men in the University’s teacher credential programs by fall 2017. “With the number of students of color in California and Orange County schools continuing to grow, we need to focus on recruiting and preparing a diverse teaching force,” says Nelson. “This, in turn, can inspire and draw more underrepresented students into teaching careers.” Through this effort, underrepresented students like Bibian are receiving mentorship from black and Hispanic teachers in local classrooms to foster professional networks in school communities, as well as deepen their commitment to enter the teaching workforce. “As a child, I noticed there weren’t very many males in the field of teaching — and in particular, there were not many Latino males,” adds Bibian, who is of Mexican descent. “It felt almost like an obligation for me to step up and enter the profession so students will actually have a teacher who looks like them.” Equally as important, Bibian adds, “As a teacher, I want to have the same positive impact in the lives of my students as my teachers did on mine.” DEBRA CANO RAMOS CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, FULLERTON I 13


FOR SCREENWRITER Rosanne Welch, the ripple effect of being the woman in the room begins like this: “The doctor walks in …” “All I have to do is write She says… and they have to hire a female. That’s how powerful it is to have a female voice in a room,” says the lecturer of cinema and television arts. Female leaders are trending — on TV. And, much like in real life, it’s taken decades to rewrite the script, says Welch. We need more women writers in the room and more female role models at the helm, at the corporate table, in the judge’s chair, in political office — and not just on TV, she says. “We do know that it’s highly influential,” she says of TV. “We need to kind of know something’s real and then we highlight those

“It is not surprising that women are in a position to rise to the highest levels of politics,” says Stephen Stambough, professor of political science. Women have been increasingly successful at the senate and gubernatorial levels, in addition to other areas of leadership, such as business and the military, he adds. “The success of [more] women at these levels leads to women’s success at higher levels, including the presidency.” In the business world, the most success is gained through interdependent teams of people working together toward a common goal, says Julie Miller-Phipps ’83 (B.A. sociology), president of Kaiser Foundation Hospitals and Health Plan in Southern California and a past chair of the Cal State

of Women Engineers president Paulina Mendez say an early support system is crucial for female students seeking careers in male-dominated fields. Pairing young women studying engineering with a mentoring upper-division student and a working professional increases her chance of staying in the program, she adds. “But it isn’t enough to have a professional mentor. We need to support each other as women, as students, to build our own success story,” says Mendez. “I don’t necessarily need to meet the mentor who’s building an empire, but I need to meet the woman who can share the tools she uses to succeed. All that helps me find my voice to help the women entering now as freshmen.”


WOMEN AT THE HELM existences in TV, and the public sees it more often, and then it becomes more real.” Women have led for generations in the United Kingdom, France, Norway and Germany, and multiple countries empower women to participate in leadership roles using quotas requiring governing bodies to have at least a minimum percentage of female representation. Yet 2016 was the first year a woman won the presidential nomination for a major party in the United States. And female representation in local and legislative politics has been slow to grow. “We’ve been late in terms of gender equality, in policy, even in politics,” says Donna Nicol, associate professor of women and gender studies. “We’ve been late to get these policies in place, written and conceived. People don’t start to move toward equality for women without a mandate. The lack of mandate has allowed these narrow ideas to harden over time.”

Fullerton Philanthropic Foundation Board of Governors. Studies in sociology at CSUF taught her foundational team dynamics and prepared Miller-Phipps to “read” a room for what might not be said aloud, she says. Investing in her team and holding them accountable builds strength, too. “Most people will rise or fall to the level you expect of them. Because most of what is accomplished by the president is done by others once they understand the vision and strategy, coaching, mentoring and teaching where I can — and then letting them do the jobs they were hired to do — are key,” she says.

BUILDING STUDENT SUCCESS Women in leadership mentoring, classes, programs and research have an interdisciplinary reach at Cal State Fullerton. Titan leaders like senior and CSUF Society

“I believe most women leaders that I have known ask better questions, build stronger, more committed teams and make better decisions because we understand how to consider the rational and emotional sides of issues,” Miller-Phipps says. At the curriculum core are Nicol’s course on women in leadership offered by the Department of Women and Gender Studies and the Women’s Leadership Program led by Mihaylo College of Business and Economics management professor Goli Sadri and program director Joanna Moore. Nicol requires her students to examine whether gender influences the current political climate and the economy’s migration of jobs, and how those factors affect students’ personal finances. Her students also draft executive summaries to local legislators in support of the students’ assigned fictitious bills on issues often limited by labels as “women’s issues.” The projects CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, FULLERTON I 15

courageous leadership among young women within higher education who possess the skills necessary to move discourse forward on some of our most challenging social issues.


“A female leader? I want the same things in her that I want to see from a male leader,” says student Analía Cabral, right. “I want them to be thinking about how to make their community better and focus on the people, not on self-gain.” Above: Goli Sadri, professor of management, and Julie Miller-Phipps, president of Kaiser Foundation Hospitals and Health Plan in Southern California.

increase the students’ awareness of those politicians and their records on such issues as education costs, child care, equal pay and paid family leave, she says. “Women represent half the workforce, but only 4 percent of the top or CEO positions,” says Sadri. “Something is impeding their progress.” That “something” is a bit of a labyrinth: a combination of skills women lack, decisions they make, prejudice and unconscious bias, and societal expectations, she says. The program, now in its second year, challenges 40 young women to recognize those challenges and develop their skills in four pillars of leadership: character, competence, context and communication. Talks with industry professionals are designed to help them develop skills in resilience, negotiation, advocacy, finding the correct balance between assertiveness and aggressiveness, and competencies


necessary for leadership, mentorship and networking. “Women and men are part of the same solution,” says Moore, the program’s director. “Even though we are still trying to gain more women in top CEO positions, it’s not going to happen by having some magical quota, and women don’t want that anyway. They want to earn that position.” This year the BOLD Women’s Leadership Network is launching a two-year beta program supporting 60 BOLD Scholars on four university campuses, including Cal State Fullerton. Established by the Pussycat Foundation in the spirit of longtime Cosmopolitan editor Helen Gurley Brown, the network is an intergenerational initiative across four institutions of higher education led by women presidents that have demonstrated their commitment to collaboration, innovation, diversity and inclusion. The BOLD Network is focused on developing

Natalie Fousekis, professor of history and director of the Center for Oral and Public History, launched the Women, Politics and Activism project in 2013 to record the experiences of 300 female leaders in five years. “The project is to understand the unique perspective that women bring to civic life,” Fousekis says. “Faced with the reality of no women on the Los Angeles City Council in 2013, I asked ‘How can we provide more models for young women so that they decide to get involved in public life?’ “Hopefully their stories will expose — not just to our students, but to high school students and young women — the models of leadership.” Analía Cabral, a senior majoring in art and history, is one of 60 students recording and transcribing audio and video interviews with female leaders ranging in age from 25 to nearly 100. The collection will become a public and searchable database by the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage in 2019. “A lot of these women — especially the women of color — even though they did not always succeed in running for office, they succeeded in showing that they were doing enough and helping in their communities,” says Cabral. The experience shaped how she’ll teach her high school history class one day, Cabral adds. Lessons will include more about women who changed history, and she will focus on the history her students want to learn — about their own communities and cultures. She will encourage them to create their own oral history projects and ethnographies, too. “Women’s histories aren’t really recorded in the history books, especially in the K through 12 system,” says Cabral. “Women are hardly even mentioned until college, and even then it’s only when you’re taking women’s studies or ethnic studies courses. “Students think history is only in the books and that it’s not what’s happening now. It is what’s happening now. Today.” CERISE VALENZUELA METZGER

Leading From Within Making her mark as a leader firmly committed to equity and inclusion at Cal State Fullerton, President Mildred García reflects on her journey to becoming the 11th female president — and the first Latina president — in the California State University system. WHAT WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE LIKE AS A WOMAN COMING UP THROUGH THE RANKS?

In my journey from first-generation college student to the first Latina president in the largest system of higher education in the country, there have been and continue to be glass ceilings — from the high school counselor who said I “wasn’t college material” to a former colleague who told me I was aiming “too high” in pursuing a doctorate. This is an everyday reality for girls, women, people of color and low-income students who dare to dream beyond what society expects of them, compounding our collective responsibility to mentor and support them until the ceiling that loomed over them not only cracks, but turns to gravel beneath their feet. WHY IS IT IMPORTANT FOR WOMEN TO HAVE FEMALE LEADERS AND MENTORS IN THEIR FIELD OF CHOICE?

Equality only works if everyone starts from the same place. As president of a university that serves more than 40,000 students, I know firsthand that cultural differences, socioeconomic backgrounds, gender and many other things create obstacles to equitable access and participation. Not everyone starts from the same place, especially women, low-income students and people of color, underscoring the need to ensure they have mentors and role models who look like them,

come from their neighborhoods and speak their language — both literally and metaphorically. I recently met one of our faculty members who hyphenated her last name when she married so her students know she is Latina. Shortly thereafter, she was teaching an online course in which a first-generation Latina student reached out to her because she recognized her last name as being Hispanic. She ended up mentoring that student, who went on to earn a Ph.D. and is now teaching at Cal State Fullerton alongside her mentor. This is not an isolated incident, and the generational impact of underrepresented students and women being mentored by underrepresented and women faculty is the cornerstone of much of our success. WHAT IS THE UNIVERSITY’S ROLE IN ENCOURAGING MORE WOMEN TO BECOME LEADERS IN THEIR COMMUNITIES AND CAREERS?

Cal State Fullerton’s student body is 56 percent women, more than half of whom are the first in their family to attend college, and we are first in California and 10th in the nation in bachelor’s degrees earned by women, underscoring our responsibility to ensure our female students are prepared to work and lead in a global society. Our strategic plan and the President’s Commission on Equity and Inclusion are just two initiatives that speak to our efforts to ensure gender diversity remains prevalent, not just on our search committees, but in the candidate pools from which they will be hiring. Today, our leadership ranks reflect the diversity of our student body — six of our nine deans are women and two of our six vice

presidents are women — creating an environment of mentorship, support and nurturing for women and all students who look to the campus leadership to see what is possible. WHAT IS YOUR MOST IMPORTANT CONTRIBUTION AS A LEADER?

Working collaboratively with all faculty and staff members so that we, as a campus community, know and understand the students we serve in their language and space. Then, with that knowledge and understanding in place, ensuring that the institution is adapting and evolving with our communities so that all students — regardless of their background, age, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender or economic standing — have equitable access to gain acceptance to, enroll in, succeed at and graduate from college. WHAT IS YOUR LEADERSHIP STYLE?

Collaboration, accountability, transparency and diversity. I recognize that our diverse campus community is made up of some of the most intelligent and innovative minds in the world — bright, creative faculty, staff and students whose potential transcends their job descriptions, resumes, backgrounds or degrees. I aim to nurture this potential and ensure that every Titan has a voice at the table and a vested interest in having it heard. I feel it is equally imperative that we listen and contribute to the campuswide dialogue that emerges, empower our colleagues to transform that conversation into strategic initiatives that align with our universitywide mission, and hold them accountable for the work they’ve committed to. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, FULLERTON I 17


BEHIND THE MUSIC The University’s Choral Program Tops the Charts

WHEN THE GENIUS WHOSE MUSIC kept you away from the ocean for much of your life calls, you answer. Last summer, the man responsible for some of the most recognizable film scores in history — from the terrifying main theme from “Jaws” to “Hedwig’s Theme” from the Harry Potter films — asked the Cal State Fullerton University Singers to join him in the studio to record anew the compositions he created for some of Steven Spielberg’s movies. John Williams is no stranger to the University Singers, nor its members to him. The ensemble has joined forces with the Academy Award-winner several times in his annual “Maestro at the Movies” show at the Hollywood Bowl. For the album, the ensemble sang a piece from “Amistad” and one from “Saving Private Ryan.” “It was a magical day,” says Robert Istad, professor of music and director of the choral program. “We walk in and the maestro is chatting with someone. And it’s Spielberg! The maestro starts conducting, and Spielberg is walking around and becomes overcome with emotion during the ‘Saving Private Ryan’ piece. “The students are singing. The composer is on the podium. He’s an example of gratitude and professionalism. And when it’s over, John comes over to thank the students. He’s hugging the kids! And our students are getting this experience.”


Call this a high note in a Cal State Fullerton choral student’s academic career — one of many. “There’s a long history of vocal music here,” says Istad. “It all began with the clear vision of a few people back in the early days.”

THE FIRST MOVEMENT David Thorsen, who retired in 1995, founded the University’s choral program in 1960. He and Jane Paul Hummel, professors emeriti of music, assembled a strong team of voice teachers and educators. The result, according to Istad, was a “vocal hotbed” in what was still a relatively new university. “David was the one who took the choirs to national conferences for the first time. He took them on European tours. He is the one who really established Cal State Fullerton as a major choral and vocal powerhouse,” he explains. Legend has it that Thorsen also infiltrated a student protest in 1970 to protect the newly built Performing Arts Center. “David was terrified because the building was brand new and the students’ base of operations was the choir room. That’s where they were living,” says Istad. “He pretended to be a student and came in just to make sure that they weren’t damaging the piano or the room because he was so proud of the building. They were using acoustic curtains as beds.” Another choral program pioneer, John Alexander, spent much of his academic career at Cal State Northridge, commuting regularly to Orange County to fulfill his duties as artistic director of Pacific Chorale. “Every big conservatory in the country wanted him. But he was really passionate about being in Southern California,” says Istad. When Thorsen retired, Alexander came to Cal State Fullerton in 1996 to head the program. “Thorsen had built an amazing choral program at Cal State Fullerton,” explains Alexander. “The whole music department was extraordinary — but the choral program was huge.” Ten years later, Alexander decided to retire as well. The University conducted a national search to replace him, but found the best successor in one of his own students: Robert Istad.


“The choral program at Cal State Fullerton has always been about the students,” says Robert Istad, center, leading the University Singers. “That’s why it has always thrived.”

THE MAKING OF A CHORUS Each Cal State Fullerton choral ensemble — the Women’s Choir, Titan Men’s Chorus, Concert Choir and University Singers — has its own place in the sun. They each travel and have their own shows on and off campus. The most competitive chorus is the University Singers. Istad, and Alexander and Thorsen before him, believe the strength of the University’s choral program lies in the great relationship between the choir director and the voice teachers. “That’s not the case in most schools. The choir director often asks singers to sing with very constricted production,” says Istad. “The muscles in your throat are so delicate; it’s such a delicate, precise art form, learning how to control the musculature and the pressure of the breath, among other things.”

“My colleagues and I believe that good singing is good singing, no matter the venue.

That’s sort of our mantra.” - Robert Istad

Private voice teachers tend to discourage voice students from singing in the choir because they want them to focus on freeing up their musculature, and many choir directors ask singers to really “squeeze it in” to get a perfectly blended sound among all the singers. “Thorsen was one of the first people to say no — you don’t have to do that,” says Istad. “He insisted that a conductor could free students to sing just like they do in their studios. A talented conductor must have the ears, musical skill and ability to create a unified sound within that vocal color. It takes more work. “That’s part of the secret — we’ve always had a really wonderful relationship between the voice studios and the choral program,” he adds. “Always. My colleagues and I believe that good singing is good singing no matter the venue. And that’s sort of our mantra. You can’t separate the opera program from the choral program from the studio voice program — all the classes, the music education. That’s what builds this strong sense of choral music here.” The school also boasts a 100 percent job placement rate for choral music education students in the teaching credential program. “In most universities and colleges that train teachers, students student-teach for a single semester in the last half of their senior year, and then they look for a job,” says music professor Christopher Peterson, who directs the Concert Choir and the Titan Men’s Chorus. “Our students study to be teachers all the way to graduation, and then they receive their diplomas and reapply to the

graduate school so that they can student-teach post-bachelor’s for an entire year.” During that year they work under the mentorship of a master teacher in public schools and receive graduate credits that they can use to start their first job higher on the pay scale. CSUF also has more music education methods classes that meet over several semesters and for longer periods of time than most other schools, he adds, as well as a credential interview that assesses the skills, abilities and professionalism of candidates who seek to student-teach. “What Cal State Fullerton has is this unbelievably unified faculty in the voice and choral areas that gives the students a comprehensive musical education that helps each one of them in whatever their chosen field is in the end — whether they want to pursue doctoral degrees, teach in universities or be performers,” says Alexander. “It is one of the best designed programs I have seen in all of my work in education.” Another national search took place in 2015 when, after 44 years, Alexander decided to retire as artistic director of Pacific Chorale. Again, Istad was chosen to take Alexander’s place, kicking off the 2017-18 season.

HITTING THE HIGH NOTES There was a surreal moment not too long ago when Sammy Salvador walked into El Torito restaurant and heard his grandfather’s music interpreted by a mariachi band. “It was trippy,” he says. Ricardo Sánchez, who made his name in Mexico heading the band Los Moonlights, would no doubt have found

it ‘trippy’ to know that his grandson had performed a solo at Carnegie Hall as a member of the University Singers. Or that he had sung backup for Andrea Bocelli, or performed in Paris. Next summer, the music education major will tour Scandinavia, the Baltics and Russia with the ensemble. After he’s completed his bachelor’s degree, he will pursue his teaching credential. “I really want to teach high school because that’s where I got my passion for music,” he says. “I think I could relate to that age range and instill a passion for music with them, too. And I still want to perform.” Much of the choral program’s strength lies in the opportunities it offers its students, says Salvador. “Not a lot of places do these outside performances. Not a lot of people do this kind of repertoire,” he explains. “But Dr. Istad puts his all into this program.” “These students have had to work so hard for everything they’ve ever gotten,” says Istad. “They work two and three jobs. They help parents with rent and health care. To watch them succeed like this — to have careers, but also to have these experiences — you couldn’t find a more deserving group of people in your life. And Cal State Fullerton has done that for them.” While Istad was pursuing his master of music at Cal State Fullerton, his mentor, Alexander, let him conduct the University Singers in performance while they toured with the Boston Pops Orchestra. “He gave me that opportunity as a student,” says Istad. “And that’s what this place is all about.” SARAH MUÑOZ CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, FULLERTON I 21

CLASS NOTES I To submit news about yourself, email titanmagazine@fullerton.edu.


ROBERT E. LINDEMAN (B.S. engineering) was elected to the board of directors of the American Association of Engineering Societies. He retired as a Lifetime Achievement Fellow after a 41-year career at Arnold Engineering Development Complex.


DANA R. WELLINGTON (B.A. psychology), a realtor with J. Rockcliff Realtors in Danville, Calif., was named 2015-16 Rotarian of the Year by the Rotary Club of Alamo. She is the club’s current membership director.


DANIEL A. BEUCKE (B.A. communications) joined the Los Angeles Times as deputy business editor, a position he previously held with the Orange County Register. The awardwinning journalist spent 15 years with Businessweek. ERNEST C. COOPER (B.A. business administration-accounting) is a partner in Vicenti Lloyd Stutzman LLP. JOSEPH R. GARRISON (B.M.), a composer in San Diego, performed an original jazz composition, “The People Upstairs,” at the Birch Aquarium as part of its fourth annual “Springfest: Immersion.” STEVEN C. GEETING (B.A. political science), an attorney with his own firm with offices in Riverside and Santa Ana, is a Federal Court appeals mediator and a member of the federal, Riverside, San Bernardino and Los Angeles county bar associations.


LINDA CHAVEZ DOYLE (B.A. Spanish), a former Los Angeles County librarian, is author of her second book, “Silence Please,” about three women who work for a library in the fictional city of Sandy Dunes. MARY ANN GILBERT (B.A. speech communication, ’79 M.A. speech communication) is owner of the Whittier Hearing Center, a provider of hearing aids and audiology services. RONALD REEDER (B.A. art, ’78 M.A. art) teaches two- and three- dimensional design at Rio Hondo College.


MICHAEL W. HEINTZ (M.A. artcrafts) is an artist and silversmith who sells jewelry at the Sawdust Festival in Laguna Beach. NOEL C. LAFLIN (B.A. communications) retired after 35 years in sales for the medical industry.


KITTY L. DEKIEFFER (B.A. business administration-accounting), foundation executive director at Gamma Phi Beta International Sorority, is the 2016 recipient of the William D. Jenkins Outstanding Foundation Professional Award from the North-American Interfraternity Conference Foundation. RHONDA F. HAYES (B.A. Spanish) is the author and photographer of “Pollinator Friendly Gardening: Gardening for Bees, Butterflies and Other Pollinators” and a columnist for the Minneapolis Star Tribune, Northern Gardener magazine and other publications. LINDA WOOLVERTON (M.A. theatre arts) is screenwriting a sequel to the 2014 film “Maleficent,” which she also wrote. Her recent work includes the 2010 film “Alice in Wonderland” and its 2016 sequel, “Alice Through the Looking Glass.”

Alumni, faculty, staff, students, parents and community partners are fighting for Cal State Fullerton’s future. Will you join us?

advocacy.fullerton.edu 22 I TITAN WINTER/SPRING 2017


JEFFREY P. BAIR (B.A. communicative disorders) is regional vice president with Touchmark, a full-service retirement community.


GARY L. HOWARD (B.A. economics) owns an accounting firm in Los Alamitos, Calif. GLORIA E. LARA (B.A. business administration-accounting) was named chief executive officer of the Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in September.


PAULETTE G. LANDERS (B.A. art) is a fiber artist who won “Best of Show” as part of the Pacific Park Gallery exhibit “In Stitches: Not Your Grandmother’s Quilts.”


TIMOTHY C. COLEMAN (B.A. business administration-marketing) has joined Dart Appraisal, an appraisal management company, as a national account executive for south Texas.

Through a planned gift, you have the power to leave a legacy — one that both supports the University and provides meaningful benefits to you and your loved ones. Ontiveros Legacy Society members have done just that, enjoying the financial advantages that come with a planned gift while knowing that the impact of their generosity will be felt by Titans today and far into the future. Helpful planning tools are available online, or you may contact Hart Roussel at 657-278-5429 or CSUFplannedgift@fullerton.edu for more information.

V. “ANDRE” REKTE (B.A. chemistry) is an attorney with the law firm Girardi and Keese, overseeing its San Bernardino office. SCOTT SADLER (B.A. communicative disorders) was named to Palmdale High School’s Alumni Hall of Fame. Sadler, who has 34 years of experience in engineering, was honored for community service. JACK E. STRUBLE (B.A. criminal justice), who retired from the Los Angeles Police Department in 2003, has written his first book, “Major Violators: Los Angeles.”


PATRICIA KISLER (B.A. communications), government relations director for the Carpinteria Valley Chamber of Commerce and board secretary for the Chambers of Commerce Alliance, was named to the advisory board of Devereux California, a nonprofit provider of behavioral health care. WILLIAM L. SADLER (B.A. communications) is a judge in the Los Angeles County Superior Court. ANITA M. TUCKERMAN (B.A. communications) is vice president of asset services and corporate relations at Stirling Capital Investment.



BRADLEY W. FAGRELL (B.S. engineering-civil and mechanical engineering) is Lake Elsinore’s city engineer. GARY A. KEENER (B.A. business administration-finance) is vice president of the Swiss Reinsurance Corp. DAVID T. LOWERRE (B.S. computer science) is lead singer for the Fullerton-based barbershop quartet Sugar Daddies.

RICHARD “RICK” RAYBURN (M.A. education-educational administration, administrative service credential) retired in June after eight years as superintendent of the Lemoore Union Elementary School District.

LAURA S. ARCHULETA (B.A. criminal justice, ’91 MPA), president of Jamboree Housing Corp. in Irvine, was named vice chair of the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco’s Affordable Housing Advisory Council.


ROBERT A. GERGER (B.A. business administration-accounting) was appointed chief financial officer at PrescribeWellness, a cloudbased services company established to inspire collaboration for better health.

RICHIO AIKAWA (M.S. engineering-electrical) is senior director of marketing and alliances with Netlist Inc., a provider of memory solutions for cloud computing and storage markets.


KEVIN J. MCNULTY (B.A. psychology) is president and CEO of NetWeave Social Networking in Florida.

JON C. KUBO (M.S. engineeringsystems engineering) is chief digital officer for Tilly’s Inc.


PATRICIA PALERMO (B.A. American studies, ’92 M.A. English) had her book “The Message of the City” published by Ohio University Press.

ANDREAS HESSING (B.A. art, ’89 M.A. art-crafts) is owner of Scrub Jay Studios, a Pasadena landscape design firm. He teaches native design courses at the Theodore Payne Foundation, a nonprofit organization in Sun Valley. VICTOR N. ROCHA (B.A. criminal justice) is director of security, loss prevention and emergency preparedness at Goodwill Southern California.


MARY L. LINDSEY (B.A. economics) is a broker associate with the San Clemente office of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties. JANET (NEWCOMB) VANBEBBER (B.A. liberal studies) became the American Quarter Horse Association chief racing officer in June. VanBebber is the first female trainer to pass the 1,000 career victory mark.


KENNETH J. ALLEN (B.A. mathematics-probability and statistics) is deputy commissioner of the California Department of Insurance, Rate Regulation Branch.


JEFFREY G. KUSS (B.A. political science) is senior vice president and chief claims officer for AF Group of Lansing, Mich. PHILIP V. OROZCO (B.A. political science), a senior management analyst with the Los Angeles Fire Department, was appointed in May to the Tournament of Roses Foundation Board. ERIC A. SHUEY (B.A. business administration-finance) was named to the board of directors of Encore Rehabilitation Services LLC.


JEFF E. LOWE (B.A. business administration-finance) provides retirement planning as part of Emerald Blue Advisors in Laguna Hills. JOAN C. LYNCH (B.A. communications-public relations) is vice president of brand marketing for Mammoth Mountain. She was the 2016 recipient of the North American Snowsports Journalists Association’s Bob Gillen Memorial Award.


DAVID L. DE FILIPPO (B.A. business administration-finance) was named senior vice president and regional manager for California United Bank’s Orange County Commercial Lending Office in Irvine. He is a member of the Mihaylo College of Business and Economics’ Executive Council.


STEVE BAUTISTA (M.S. psychology), a counselor at Santa Ana College for 20 years, received a 2017 Orange County Teacher of the Year Award, an annual recognition by the Orange County Department of Education and SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union. JORDON P. STEINBERG (B.A. communications-public relations) is managing partner with Kaufmann Steinberg LLP of Irvine and a certified specialist in family law. MICHAEL R. VARGO (B.A. communications-public relations) is vice president for D23, special events and Disney corporate creative resources.


KEITH E. CHRISTIAN (B.A. psychology) is the 2016 recipient of the Braille Institute of America Teacher of the Year for Excellence in Braille Instruction. Christian, who is blind, has taught vision-impaired children for two decades.

CSUFCommunity Want to learn more about what’s happening at Cal State Fullerton? Sign up for the monthly e-newsletter: community.fullerton.edu/form.aspx


ANNA L. GARCÍA (B.S., ’10 M.S. geology) is a hydrogeologist with the Mojave Water Agency and secretary of the High Desert Mineralogical Society. She received the 2016 Alumni of the Year Award from CSUF’s Geological Sciences Department.


PARAND SALMASSINIA (B.A. biological science) was appointed regional vice president with DSM Personal Care North America. JANET A. VANVLEET (B.A. communications-journalism) is a columnist for the Texas Abilene Reporter-News.


TODD W. HARMONSON (B.A. communications-journalism) was named senior editor at the Orange County Register. In 2015, he received the David McQuay Award for Best Columnist from the Orange County Press Club. AMANDA Y. HONG (B.A. business administration-accounting, ’04 M.S. taxation) is a tax partner with KSJG Accounting and Consulting in Orange County.


HUSSAM R. AYLOUSH (MBA) is executive director of the Los Angeles chapter of the Council for American-Islamic Relations. BRANDON S. DICKENS (B.A. business administration-finance) is vice president of development at Simply Self Storage, where he oversees the acquisition of land and development of groundup facilities in the western United States.

TIMOTHY VU (B.A. criminal justice) is Westminster’s deputy police chief and the highest-ranking Vietnamese police officer in Southern California.


ANTHONY D. CORWIN (B.A. business administration-marketing) is general manager of the Health and Safety Institute. REGINA (ROJAS) DEAN (B.A. geography) is a city planner in Burnsville, Minn. JULIE A. PERLIN LEE ’03 ’06 (B.A. art-art history, M.F.A. art-design) is executive director of the Catalina Island Museum. Mike McGee, CSUF professor of art and director of the Begovich Gallery, was her mentor during her time on campus. The exhibition design program, she says, “gave me every practical need for working within a museum: teamwork, scholarship, career knowledge, fundraising skills, gallery design and construction, public relations skills, catalog publishing and exhibition logistics. I left with a tight network of fellow students, alums in the field and art professionals.” Julie met her husband, DAVID MICHAEL LEE ’04 (M.F.A. art-drawing, painting and printmaking), while at Cal State Fullerton. He is a professor of art and gallery director for Coastline Community College in Newport Beach.


ROBERT T. HAMILTON (B.S. kinesiology) was named athletic training director at The King’s Academy in West Palm Beach. He previously served as athletic training director at Palm Beach Atlantic University. MICHAEL S. MASSIMINO (B.A. business administration-management) is information technology director at Telogis, a global, cloud-based mobile enterprise management software company in Aliso Viejo. NICOLE COX (B.A. communications-public relations) is chief recruitment officer for the national virtual recruiting firm, Decision Toolbox.


JASON E. COSS (B.A. criminal justice) is principal of Lone Hill Middle School in San Dimas. CHRISTOPHER J. JOB (B.M.-voice) is a contract player with the Metropolitan Opera House in New York. Among his roles: Sir Walter Raleigh in “Roberto Devereux,” Hobson in “Peter Grimes” and Leporello in “Don Giovanni.” JOHN NGUYEN (B.A. business administration-finance) is vice president for investments with Marcus and Millichap, Newport Beach, and a member of the California State University Real Estate Education Endowment Advisory Board.

HARVEY TORRES (B.A. business administration-finance) is vice president of Small Business Administration lending for Union Bank in Orange County. He previously served in the same position for Bank of the West in Newport Beach and vice president for Plaza Bank in Irvine. IRENE A. VORONEL (B.A. English) owns and operates I Love Reno Magazine and hosts the “I Love Reno Radio Hour” on KNEWS 107.3 in Reno. She also is broker/ owner of Home NV Real Estate. In June, she was re-elected to a one-year term as vice president of communications on the board of directors for the Nevada Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology.

KRISTIN L. DUPREE (B.A. liberal studies) is principal of Mariana Academy in the Apple Valley Unified School District. LOUIE D. LEMONNIER (B.S. child and adolescent development) is principal at Hope School in the Anaheim Union High School District. JOSHUA C. PRUETT (B.F.A. artentertainment art-animation,’04 M.A. art-design) is writer of “Milo Murphy’s Law” with the Disney ABC Television Group. He co-authored “The Jungle Book: The Strength of the Wolf Is the Pack” and was writer and consulting producer for “The Haunted Mansion” with Disney/ABC. He was part of the Disney team nominated for a 2016 Outstanding Animated Program Emmy for the final “Phineas and Ferb” episode, “The Last Day of Summer.”


HARRY ERVIN (professional administrative credential) was named superintendent of the Bakersfield City School District.


DAN HENEIN (B.A. business administration-finance) was promoted to vice president of client accounting at FirstService Residential, a community management company in Nevada. DANIEL G. NUNEZ (M.S. environmental studies-environmental sciences) is southwest district technical manager for Regenesis, an environmental remediation technologies company. He also serves as technical adviser on the board of directors for the Groundwater Resource Association’s Southern California branch. JANET L. ROSENBERG (B.A. psychology) is clinical director for Sedona Sky Academy, a residential treatment center in Rimrock, Ariz. Rosenberg is a licensed marriage and family therapist and substance counselor with a doctorate in psychology from Capella University.


LARNIE BOQUIREN (B.A. kinesiology) served as sports medicine manager and head athletic trainer for USA Water Polo at the 2016 Summer Olympics. RENEE L. TATUM (B.M.-voice) has joined the Concord Conservatory of Music. Tatum has performed with such companies as the Metropolitan, San Francisco, Seattle and Houston Grand Opera.


AL RABANERA (credentialfoundation level math, ’07 M.S. education-secondary education), a math educator at La Vista High School in Fullerton, will be honored in February as one of five recipients of the National Education Association’s Horace Mann Award for Teaching Excellence. 26 I TITAN WINTER/SPRING 2017

MICHAEL C. HILLMAN ’08 (B.S. civil engineering) joined Pennsylvania State University as an assistant professor of environmental engineering and holds the endowed L. Robert and Mary L. Kimball Faculty Early Career Development Professorship. He received his M.S. and Ph.D. in civil engineering from UCLA, the latter with a focus in computational mechanics. Hillman is developing a new, mesh-free computational modeling method of extreme events due to man-made and natural disasters. “We are producing tools that engineers can use to build better protection against disasters,” he said. This particular technology would help design more earthquake-resilient buildings and better evaluate structural damage, among other benefits. Hillman is helping to organize a June symposium at the Engineering Mechanics Institute conference in San Diego.


GUADALUPE V. BELLO (B.A. business administration-accounting) was promoted to audit supervisor with certified public accounting and business advisory firm, Gelman LLP. APRIL D. CHAPMAN (B.S. civil engineering) is a project manager with Grand Canyon Development Partners, a Las Vegas-based construction and real estate development management company.

CHRISTOPHER G. TUASON (B.S. engineering-electrical), is a systems engineer with ThalesRaytheon System in Fullerton.


MARIA L. BUCOY-CALAVAN (B.A. music-liberal arts; ’10 M.M. performance) is director of the Akron Symphony Chorus, artistic director of Summit Choral Society and director of Choral Studies at the University of Akron.

MONICA R. LANDEROS (M.F.A. art-sculpture) is an elementary school teacher and artist who creates works in textiles, stitching and objects.

LUIS F. FERNANDEZ (B.A. English and ethnic studies-Chicano studies, ’10 M.A. history) is executive director of Dominguez Rancho Adobe Museum in Compton.

DIANE PATTERSON (M.S. gerontology) is founder of “Success in Aging TV” and editor of the website’s Journal for Success in Aging.

TRISTAN FONTUGNE (B.A. economics) is assistant vice president of product design, Life Insurance Division, for Pacific Life.

DANIELLE TOLENTINO TUASON (B.A. business administrationentrepreneurship), director of development and leadership operations at TRI Leadership Resources LLC in Santa Fe Springs, is currently serving as president of CSUF’s Nonprofit Professional Alumni Chapter. Her husband,

KAITLIN LESAGE CRAWFORD (B.A. theatre arts) joined architectural lighting designer Targetti USA as customer service and marketing manager.


STEPHANIE M. ABELING (B.A. liberal studies) is a senior accountant with Consumers Pipe and Supply. She is the fourth-generation family member serving the 50-year-old firm. GREGORY AVILES (B.S. kinesiology) is the men’s soccer coach at Fullerton College. He is the founder of 10 Soccer Academy. ZACHARY M. BENEDICT (B.A. communications-public relations) has been promoted to online marketing director with the California Avocado Commission. BRETT B. BROWN (B.A. business administration-management) is the new football coach at Huntington Beach High School. RAMON CARDENAS (B.A. business administration-finance), a senior vice president of Realty Executives Commercial, is president of the Greater Lynwood Chamber of Commerce.

YOLANDA DURON (M.S. kinesiology) is Fullerton College’s women’s tennis coach. She previously served as coach at the University of LaVerne, where she coached the team to 16 wins and its first NCAA National Championship appearance in 2014. MIKAELA D. GUTIERREZ (B.A. communications-entertainment studies) is executive assistant to the executive vice president of sales at CBS Studios International.

SANDRA C. LOPEZ (B.F.A. artentertainment art/animation) is the author of three books, including “Beyond the Gardens,” winner of a 2016 Global Ebook Awards silver medal in the multicultural fiction category. Her other books are “Esperanza: A Latina Story” and “Single Chicas,” a collection of stories. TRINA SAUCEDA (M.S. gerontology) is owner of Let’s Keep You in Your Home, an in-home assisted living service.

In Memoriam

MEI L. BICKNER, professor emeritus of management, died Sept. 1 at the age of 75. A labor and employment arbitrator who mediated disputes for aerospace, broadcasting, education, engineering and research firms, she served Cal State Fullerton for 30 years. / COURTNEY M. BROWN ’15 (M.A. American studies) died July 9 at the age of 31. He was pursuing a Ph.D. as a William Fontaine Fellow of Africana Studies and Ethnomusicology at the University of Pennsylvania. / PATRICIA I. GREEN ’75 (B.A. anthropology and religious studies) died July 14 at the age of 77. Green, who had moved to the Ozarks in 1977, served as a Stephen Minister, a hospice volunteer and a leader in the Evangel University Auxiliary, as well as an adjunct professor at Central Bible College and Evangel University. / JAMES K. HIGHTOWER, professor emeritus of information systems and decision sciences, died Oct. 8 at the age of 79. Hightower joined Cal State Fullerton in 1969 and

served the campus community for 35 years. / GERALD B. HOTH, professor emeritus of accounting, died March 11. The educator, who served the University for 21 years, was director of the National Association of Accountants for two years and on the editorial board of the Journal of Accounting Education. Hoth was 69. / TRAVIS MICHAEL JORDAN ’14 (B.A. communications-public relations), a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force, died May 5 while on active duty at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Fla. After he finished his studies at Cal State Fullerton, Jordan received an MBA from Cal State San Bernardino, where he also completed his ROTC training. / HAZEL LODEVICO-TO’O ’09 (M.A. communications-mass communications research and theory) passed away at the age of 36. She was a founding editor of the Glendora Patch and a communications specialist with Arizona Priority Care. / STEVEN A. MOSHIER ’74 ’79 (B.M., M.M.-composition), a

MAI-LY TRAN (B.A. business administration-entrepreneurship) is the women’s tennis head coach at Drake University. Tran was a fouryear member of the Titans tennis team who returned to CSUF in fall 2013 as assistant coach.


CHRISTINE F. HERNANDEZ (B.A. English), associate director of women’s leadership and student involvement at Mount St. Mary’s University, is a recipient of the University of Pennsylvania’s Ethel and Allen “Buddy” Carruth Sustained Leadership in Education Award.

JOSH AKOGNON (B.A. ethnic studies), a former Titan basketball player, was a member of the Nigerian basketball team at the 2016 Summer Olympics.

BRIAN KOPAN (MBA-finance) is senior vice president of engineering and technology at Point Blank Enterprises, a manufacturer of soft-body armor and protective solutions.

professor of music at Rio Hondo College, died June 19. / HARRY NORMAN, associate vice president emeritus for international programs and dean of University Extended Education, died Nov. 2. Participation in programs such as University Semester Abroad grew dramatically during his tenure. He was 75. / GEORGE POLLAK, one of CSUF’s earliest major donors, died Nov. 16. A $1 million charitable remainder trust from Pollak and his wife, Paulina June, professor emeritus of English and comparative literature, was used to create the Pollak Library’s first collection endowment in 1988. / JACK A. PONTNEY, professor emeritus of economics, died Nov. 6 at the age of 85. He joined CSUF in 1961 as the second faculty member in the department and served 20 years, helping develop the program for both the undergraduate and master’s degrees. / DONNA POWELL, supervising lead buyer and office manager emeritus, died Nov. 7 at age

84. / VERA M. ROBINSON, professor emeritus of nursing, died Feb. 11 at the age of 92. The former U.S. Army nurse taught at CSUF for 11 years, including six as department chair. / DIXIE SHAW ’70 (M.S. education-educational administration) died June 3 at the age of 92. Shaw was a noted philanthropist and civic leader, having supported CSUF, as well as the Placentia-Yorba Linda School District, the Placentia Cultural Arts Commission, Library and Chamber of Commerce. / WILLIAM R. SIGNAM ’72 (M.S. education- educational administration) died April 30 at the age of 82. Signam served as an elementary school teacher in the Anaheim School District and wrote garden columns and feature stories for the LA Times, Orange County Register and the San Diego Union-Tribune. / ALBERT R. VOGELER, lecturer emeritus in liberal studies, died Sept. 30. He joined the campus community in 1973 and served for 21 years.


NICOLAS A. MAZZEO (B.A. English) is quality improvement coordinator for the Father Engagement Program at the Children’s Bureau, a nonprofit organization. MARK D. MULLER (M.S. instructional design and technology) is chair of the Department of Orthotics and Prosthetics at Cal State Dominguez Hills. MICHAEL O. NAVARRO (M.S. biology) is assistant professor of marine fisheries at the University of Alaska Southeast. Navarro earned his doctorate in biological oceanography from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego and has been working as a National Science Foundation postdoctoral scholar in ocean sciences at Cal State Monterey Bay. GABRIEL REYNAGA (B.A. communications-public relations) has joined Orange County-based Echo Media Group as its search and social media director. He formerly served as search engine optimization manager at DigitalEYE Media.


CHRISTIAN M. BROWN (B.A. communications-journalism) is editor of the Norwalk Patriot. ROBERT GUADERRAMA (B.A. communications-journalism) is a general assignment reporter with WXIX Fox19 Now news in Cincinnati.


REID BAKER (B.A. communications-advertising) has earned a master’s degree in fashion marketing from the Domus Academy of Fashion in Milan, Italy. He has his own men’s clothing line, Senze Structure. 28 I TITAN WINTER/SPRING 2017

JESSICA BOUDEVIN (B.A. English) is corporate marketing manager at Spectra Ticketing and Fan Engagement in Irvine. TRAN HONG (Ed.D. educational leadership) is associate vice president of technology at California Baptist University in Riverside.


RYAN HITCH (B.A. psychology) is an adjunct professor teaching English at Cerritos, Citrus and Norco colleges. SEMEEN ISSA (Ed.D. educational leadership) became principal of First Avenue Middle School in the Arcadia Unified School District. LAURA MINERO (B.A. psychology, ’14 M.A. psychology) is pursuing a Ph.D. in counseling psychology at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. She is a 2016 Predoctoral Ford Fellowship recipient and founder of the Dreamers of UW-Madison, a student organization that advocates for undocumented college students. CHRISTIAN OTBO (M.S. gerontology) is administrator for The Cottage at Artesia Gardens, a residential care facility. NICHOLE PALIUNGAS (B.A. communications-public relations) is assistant director of marketing and business development at Camarillo Premium Outlets. MATTHEW SANCHEZ (B.A. business administration-finance) is a senior investment consultant with online broker T.D. Ameritrade in Indianapolis, Indiana.


KEVIN M. BURKE (B.A. business administration-entrepreneurship) is founder of Dog Republic, a dog exercise, training and grooming company headquartered in Newport Beach. Founded in 2010 while Burke was still a student, the company attends to approximately 150 dogs a day. JIMMY STITZ (M.S. kinesiology) served as strength and conditioning coach for USA Women’s Volleyball at the 2016 Summer Olympics. The team captured the bronze medal.


RYAN BLANK (B.A. business administration-entertainment and tourism management) is manager of entertainment venues The Observatory North Park and The Observatory Orange County. ARIEL O. CARMONA (M.A. communications) is city editor and reporter for The Willits News. ASHLEY C. LUNSFORD (B.A. English) graduated in May 2016 with a master’s degree in English composition and a certificate in teaching postsecondary reading from San Francisco State University. She teaches reading and writing classes at Los Medanos Community College and San Francisco State University. DAVID OKAMOTO (M.S. education-educational administration) is assistant principal at Sycamore Junior High School. SHENALI NATASHA PERERA (B.A. communications-entertainment studies) works for Coastline Regional Occupational Program.

She and her father coach the Lady Lions, a high school girls rugby team in Fullerton. LAUREL REPLOGLE (M.F.A. screenwriting) is a pre-enrollment adviser in Cal State Fullerton’s School of Nursing.


EVELYN CHANG(B.A. business administration-finance) is an editorial assistant at the Orange County Business Journal. CHRISTOPHER MICHAEL STEWART (B.A. international businessChinese) completed a four-month internship in March at NASA’s Johnson Space Center, involving the design and creation of self-driving vehicles. Stewart also is working on a second undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Houston. ASHLEE R. MCCOWIN and MEGAN M. VAN BUSKIRK (B.A. communications-public relations) have joined Beyond Fifteen Communications Inc., an Orange County public relations firm co-founded by LESLIE M. LICANO ’04 (B.A. communicationspublic relations).


KELSEY M. BREWER (B.A. political science) is a political analyst with the Association of California Cities, Orange County. While at CSUF, she was appointed to the CSU Board of Trustees and served as vice chair of its Governmental Relations Committee. LOREN HANNA (B.A. communications-public relations) is teaching at Rio Hondo College and at Cal State Los Angeles, where she is working on her master’s degree.

Patrick O’Donnell


HAIL TO THE CHIEF JUST SEVEN DAYS before the 1988 presidential election, Cal State Fullerton President Jewel Plummer Cobb introduced President Ronald Reagan to a crowd of thousands at the Titan Gym. He was in town stumping for the presidential campaign of his vice president, George H. W. Bush. Students skipped class to watch his arrival. “Somebody asked why I’ve come here today,” he said. “Well, that’s easy. I like great teams and I couldn’t think of any greater one than the Titans.” Before a sea of pompoms and American flags, Reagan chided Democrats and their nominee, Michael Dukakis, while ignoring a group of agitators and asking Bush supporters to “win one more for the Gipper.” That day, a fast-selling shirt read, “Nov. 1, 1988. The day President Reagan and the world comes to Cal State Fullerton.” It was his last public appearance as president in Orange County. But it was not Reagan’s first time on campus. In 1970, he was invited to give his first address at a public campus in the state.

Efforts to punish a few hecklers unleashed a months-long string of protests and unrest that mirrored the counter-culture movements at other universities around the nation. In 1969, graduate students performed a racy play called “The Beard” on campus. After a state senate investigation, then-Gov. Reagan requested that James D. Young, professor of theatre and founding chair of the Theatre and Dance Department, be removed. The University defended Young, insisting that the state of California could not interfere with what was taught in the classroom. Nineteen years later, on the dawn of a new presidency, Reagan told students, faculty and the community, “With so many years ahead, you have a big stake in this election. Earlier this year, I had the privilege of doing something I never thought an American president would be able to do. There in the Soviet Union, in the Lenin Hills, I spoke to students at Moscow State University — and my speech was about the glories of human individual freedom.” SARAH MUÑOZ CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, FULLERTON I 29


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