NOTE FROM THE EDITOR
ell it’s finally here. The moment that you’ve worked so hard for. Wasn’t it just yesterday when you were walking to your first class at San Diego State with a multitude of feelings ranging from anxiety to excitement, confusion to fear? But it wasn’t so bad after all now was it? After many years of balancing your schoolwork with a busy social life, you have transformed into a mature person ready to take over the world. It seems like the one question everyone seems to ask you is: “What are you going to do next?” But don’t worry about that now — it’s time to remember your hard work, the lifelong friends you’ve met and the memories you have made. To commemorate all that you have contributed to the SDSU community and to the lasting impression you have left on your family and friends, The Daily Aztec has published this very issue — the inaugural Yearbook Issue. Its pages are filled with warm messages from parents,
grandparents, friends and teachers. And while each one varies in text, they all send forth the same message: your accomplishment is great and your enormous efforts haven’t gone unnoticed. Weaved between the sentiments from your loved ones are pages for you to write lasting messages to one another and memorable articles and events from your final year at SDSU. All of you will venture off into the world with unique goals and careers in mind, but the one common denominator we all share is that we had our start on this campus, sharing many of the same experiences — and that is something we will carry with us forever.
-Faryar Borhani EDITOR IN CHIEF
Congratulations Class of 2010.
My beautiful DANIELLE!!! SDSU Ladies! CONGRATULATIONS
I am so proud of you! I am very excited to see my big sis all grown up and wearing that cap & gown!
Rashni, Nancy, Becca, Allie, Clare, Kiri, Marie,Tory, Brennan, Briana:
I love you so much!
When I look back at my years at SDSU, what I will remember are the times I spent with you.
Thanks for the Memories! Congratulations Greg Bram! Thanks to all my friends for the epic memories here at State and to my family for the continuous love and support. Congrats Class of 2010...
WE DID IT!
Itâ€™s been a great four years. From Sammys to The Daily Aztec and everybody I met along the way, I wouldn't want to change it for the world. To Fillippo, Jesse, Greg, Art, Ian, Alan, Lev, John, Daniel, Bryant and Mikey: One word... MIMS! To Hannah: I love you baby. Ahh! Thank you to my parents for their support; without you I wouldn't have had these great opportunities and I owe you everything. - Drew Baker
Congratulations Desean Lee!
Cheers to the next chapter... After many hurdles, Desean Lee will be graduating from San Diego State University with a degree in Biology and an Africana Studies Minor. Desean has contributed greatly to the advancement of the university by creating academic and social programs through his Fraternity for the SDSU community.
Thank you to my parents, sisters, friends and the professors who taught me to read between the line without slipping through: Bill Nericcio, Emily Hicks, Farid Abdel-Nour, and Joseph Thomas.
GOODBYE SAN DIEGO! Congrats Class of 2010!
Thanks to my amazing friends and family for their support and the great memories!
Thanks guys for making the last 4 years unforgettable. The good times were great, and the great were amazing! - Faryar Borhani
Savannah DeLorenzo B.S. Chemistry
The Student Disability Services Student Advisory Board congratulates
Students with Disabilities who have completed Degrees
We are proud of your accomplishments!
I would like to thank my grandma, Betty Vega, who has been an amazing role model. I would not be who I am today without her love and support. I also would like to thank my parents, Debi and Frank, my cousin Breezy, and my whole family for always encouraging and helping me. I am very appreciative to all the peers, like Diana, Kim, and Nemo who became friends through tough classes over the past six years. And also professors, such as Dr. Bennett, Dr. McAlpine, and Dr. Pullman who helped spark my interest in Chemistry research here at SDSU. And how could I ever have gotten through this Chemistry degree without my late night study friends Trevor and Jessica! And my supportive boyfriend of the past two years, Bryan. All my friends have been amazing! I love you all and thank you for everything!
To the Seniors of Pi Beta Phi... We are going to miss you all so much! Congratulations and good luck in the real world! <3 PPL, All of your Cal Ep Sisters
Congratulations Aldo! We are so proud of you and your amazing accomplishments. The journey of a thousand miles has just begun! Enjoy the ride. Your loving family, friends & Jovan
ALEX ROSS "He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run and climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying." - Friedrich Nietzsche
Hasan Thanks You! Hasan returns to his country,Turkey, filled with love and respect for the U.S., and with gratitude for the opportunities experienced at SDSU. He feels extremely proud of his BA degree in International Security and Conflict Resolution. Hasan appreciates the encouragement and support of his Turkish family, his American family, his professors and friends. He wishes to dedicate his future to developing better American-Turkish relations. firstname.lastname@example.org
Congratulations Hillary Wiebe!
Congratulations Victoria! We are so very proud of your accomplishments and are excited for the many new adventures life has for you. You can handle anything! Love from all: Mommy, Kayla, Cream, Feist, Kukui, Koa, Kolohe, Louie, Badger & Delilah
“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. You are the one who’ll decide where to go.” - Dr. Seuss
Jovan Paunovic Kada je pre 26godina na nebeskom prostranstvu zatreperila jedna mala zvezda, rodio se nas zivot, rodio se nas sin Jovan.Od tog trenutka pa do danas si miljenik srece, okruzen pravim, odabranim prijateljima, uzivajuci u ljubavi svoje porodice, a najvise sestre Jelene. Znao si da samo borbom i upronoscu mozes ostvariti svoje zelje i opstati u obecanoj zemlji. Sada si tu, sa pobedom u ruci. Uspeo si! Tvoji ideali su postali stvarnost, tvoji snovi-java. Voli te najvise tvoja porodica. Uvek cemo biti uz tebe, dati ti podrsku i ispratiti te u svakom narednom zivotnom koraku. Mama Nada, tata Vesko, sestra Jelena.
Congratulations Jonathan! You made it! After years of hard work you accomplished what you set out to do! You have your whole life ahead of you so “go forth!” We are blessed to have a son like you. You have made us proud, each and every day, to call you “our” son! Your loving mom and dad
Congratulations Daily Aztec Grads!
CONGRATULATIONS! It’s been a pleasure to know all of you. Austin Carney,Andrew Harner, Chaid Teichman, David Mackenzie, Drew Baker, Elizabeth Marshall, Jovan Paunovic, Sophia Bojorquez I wish you happiness and success in all your future endeavors! - David Bucklin
Faryar Borhani Anna Cheuvront Sara Stratton Allan Acevedo Amy Ebersole Nicole Callas Dave Olender Glenn Connelly Allen Ramirez Mylene Erpelo
Elena Berridy David Pope Kristina Blake Whitney Lawrence Drew Baker Jovan Paunovic Ian Smith From, Frankie & Chris
DEA LARISSA ROESDHA Congratulations,Willy!
The best bartender that Louie's has ever seen!
Graduating Cum Laude from San Diego State University with a B.S. degree in Finance Former Associated Student Council representative and World Trade Center San Diego Executive Development and Corporate Services intern She is looking forward to tie the knot with her college sweetheart, Eric Kelekealoha Wacenske, on July 18th, 2010!
STEVE WOOD Congratulations Jacqueline Jimenez! 3 years is not long enough to spend at SDSU. From the first day of my freshman year to the moment I turned in my bachelor's thesis, I've felt right at home here. I think that saying goodbye to State will be one of the hardest transitions of my life.Thank you to everyone who made this place what it is for me.
We are so proud of you that words cannot express the joy you have brought into our lives. God has blessed us with such a wonderful daughter. We wish you the best in all your endeavors and we know that you will touch many lives. Love, Dad and Mom
CONGRATULATIONS TOMMY KOPONEN!
Life is full of choices, challenges and opportunities. Son, we are so proud that you have made the choice to become someone great; overcame the challenges that were presented to you; and took advantage of the opportunity to succeed. Continue to be yourself and enjoy your journey through life. You are loved so very much! Mom & Dad
To an AMAZING Year! 2010
Delta Sigma Pi Congratulations to all graduating seniors of Delta Sigma Pi...
Have an awesome summer! Congratulations to all members of Success Enabled Pilots (www.sdsusep.org) and The Daily Aztec newspaper staff.
The Worldâ€™s #1 Professional Business Fraternity!
Also shout to Arthur Sabat, Jesse Villanueva, Drew Baker, Cydney Siggins, Adam Oehmke, Evelyn Oehmke, Patrick Bruton, Jovan Paunovic, Ana Dowell!!!
Tiffany Monique Psilovikos
I am so proud of you. You worked so hard and it all paid off. Your diligence and pure determination was amazing to watch! With God, you can do anything you set your mind to. You have a testimony to share with others, “Keep moving forward”... Your love and compassion for children are gifts from God. You are going to make a fabulous teacher!
Congratulations Tiffany on your graduation from San Diego State University!
Love, Mom and Ian
Well done. We love you and are very proud. You are beautiful inside and out and we wish you the best of luck in the future! Our love and best wishes, Mom and Mark
Congratulations Congratulations, Amanda Maria Tim! Rolland
You worked hard, never gave up, and proved you can accomplish anything you put your mind to. We love you and wish you much success and happiness! Love, Mom, Jason,Tori, Ella, Grandma, Dave, Mary,The Lightfeet, Doug, Carol and Bryan
Tim, We are so proud of you and your amazing accomplishments. Your future’s so bright you’ve got to wear shades!! Your loving family
University protests budget Kristina Blake S E N I O R S TA F F W R I T E R
Septemeber 1, 2009
San Diego State students, faculty, staff and others attended a campus-wide budget rally in front of Hepner Hall yesterday. Advocates and curious onlookers stretched across the school’s lawns and sidewalks in order to show their support of the rally by cheering the s p e a k e r s a n d b o o i n g G o v. A r n o l d Schwarzenegger and the state legislature. They protested recent budget cuts that have left SDSU with fewer and larger classes, because about 700 staff members will not be returning to SDSU. Much of the faculty still employed face mandatory furlough days, causing roughly a 10 percent salary reduction. Additionally, fees have increased 32 percent in the last two months. Speakers at the event echoed a repeated montage: “Stand Together for SDSU.” Students signed banners displaying the slogan, and plan to send one of the autographed banners to the office of the governor and legislature as a symbol of the solidarity of the SDSU community. The second banner will remain on campus to serve as a reminder of commitment. to the cause. Gene Lamke, a professor for the Hospitality and Tourism Management department, opened the rally and energized the crowd with a tone of determination. On the first day of the fall semester, he warned students that this academic year will be different because of the budget. “It’s going to affect each and every one of us,” Lamke said. “We all need to stand up together. We need to stand up and tell Sacramento that we’re not going to take it anymore … We’re madder than hell and we’re going to stand up for ourselves.” Many students attended to protest the recent increase in student fees. Carly Neun, education senior, said she has to work in order to pay for higher education and the additional fees have resulted in an additional burden. “It’s so much money, all the extra fees,” Neun said. “I can’t afford not to have a job, which is annoying.” Anthropology senior Ann Kimho also said she has to work to pay for college. She has recently had to work temporary
Lindsey Martin / Assistant Photo Editor
positions, because her hours have been cut for her on-campus job as a student assistant at the library. “It’s impossible to go to college without working these days,” Kimho said. Advocates didn’t just show up with friends, but with specific interest groups, too. Members from the School of Social Work’s Student Social Action Committee protested by holding poster boards with messages. Kellie Scott, a member of the committee and a second-year graduate student, held a sign that read “education matters.” “We wouldn’t be here without education,” Scott said. “With the budget cuts we’re seeing fewer classes, larger classes and higher tuition. It’s not a good thing.” Speakers presented the budget cuts as a contradiction to stimulating the economy. University Senate Chair Edith Benkov said that while the legislature wants to rebuild the economy, budget cuts won’t allow for a welleducated workforce of the future. She noted
CSU universities rejected more than 40,000 qualified students as a result of the decreased funding. After the rally, Associated Students President Tyler Boden, who spoke at the event, said he was pleased with the turnout. He said he “absolutely” believes he represents the majority of students’ opinions on the matter. “I’m a student that doesn’t have any money; I get financial aid for everything I do,” Boden said. “I really care about my quality of education, I care about my accessibility to my classes and the affordability of my schooling. I definitely represent that in many students.” Boden said that he hopes the event encourages others to have an active voice in the matter. “I hope that it gets more people engaged in the conversations about how to fix the problem that we have in front of us,” Boden said. “I don’t know if anybody really has the answer, but if we all just have conversations
together, then we can reach a better answer than what we have now.” The speakers at the rally, including Boden, presented multiple methods for students and others to have their voices heard. In addition to signing the banners, attendees were encouraged to “vent at the tent,” where complaint forms could be filled out or a video message could be recorded for the governor. SDSU’s Web site also offers students a chance to use an e-advocacy tool to send a message to legislatures. Calls to the San Diego District Office of the Governor for comment were not immediately returned. SDSU President Stephen L. Weber summed up the theme of the rally in his closing speech. “There are things worth fighting for in this life,” Weber said. “Higher education and the opportunities it represents are worth fighting for.”
Modern Space vote passes Whitney Lawrence CITY EDITOR
March 11, 2010
David J. Olender / Assistant Photo Editor
Associated Students representatives waited anxiously in Aztec Center last night to hear A.S. Elections Coordinator Crystal Warren say what they longed to hear: the Modern Space student referendum passed. The polls closed at 7 p.m., and out of 4,045 total votes, 54.4 percent voted in favor of the $94 student union fee increase to fund construction of a new student union. Approximately 14 percent of San Diego State’s student body voted, beating turnout at the previous two referendums by roughly 1,000 votes, according to Dan Cornthwaite, A.S. executive director. Jeremy Katz, A.S. executive vice president and chair of the Modern Space Committee, said he wasn’t surprised by the outcome. A poll conducted by A.S. in the fall showed strong indication that students would vote in favor of the project. While A.S. celebrated the news on campus, employees for the design, architectural and construction firms hired to work on Modern Space also got word of the project’s approval. Cannon Design’s principal designer for the project, Craig Hamilton, said he was excited to see students’ commitment to the new student union in spite of the state budget cuts that have steadily increased tuition. The next step, he said, is to complete Modern Space designs and develop construction documents to keep the project moving forward. The SDSU community won’t be alone in reaping benefits from the results of the student vote, according to Hamilton. With the construction market in the midst of a
“significant recession,” he said the timing of the vote is important for the local economy. According to project director Steve Van Loan, of Sundt Construction, Modern Space will create between 250 and 350 construction jobs that will last for the duration of construction — about two years. “We’re obviously thrilled to be a part of this,” Van Loan said. “With the construction unemployment rate in California at about 46 percent, this will be a much-needed shot in the arm for our industry.” Both Cannon Design and Sundt Construction have worked on multiple Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design projects, and Modern Space is expected to be the first LEED platinumcertified student union in the nation. The certification is the highest level of sustainability a building can achieve. While the professional firms iron out the details of the building, last night’s results will also create more work for A.S. Keeping business running as usual will be a priority during Modern Space’s construction. Katz said he will focus on finding places to relocate student services during construction, including meeting and office space for student organizations. A.S. has about 15 months until Aztec Center closes and will be working with the SDSU Facilities Planning, Design and Construction Department to find feasible options. Possibilities, Katz said, include temporary structures, unoccupied fraternity houses and the former SDSU Research Foundation building. Demolition of Aztec Center will begin next summer and construction is expected to be complete by Fall 2013. Coinciding with the building’s opening will be a $94 increase in student fees, making the total student union fee $237.
SDSU takes home MWC Championship Edward Lewis SPORTS EDITOR
March 14, 2010
LAS VEGAS —- After the pandemonium died down, after the music stopped blaring, after the hundreds of fans cleared the court, San Diego State men’s basketball sixth-year senior guard Kelvin Davis strolled to the postgame press conference. He took three steps up to the podium, pulled out his chair, plopped his 2010 Mountain West Conference Tournament Championship trophy on the table and flashed the media a big smile. Davis has been at SDSU for three years. He’s seen Aztec greats such as Lorrenzo Wade come and go without hoisting a trophy. So after his SDSU squad beat UNLV, 55-45, in the MWC Tournament Championship game on Saturday at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, he wanted to show the world the new trophy he had worked so hard to earn. “We played hard and coach told us all season, ‘You play hard and win games, you have an opportunity to play for a championship,’” Davis said. “We did. And we won.” Davis scored nine points on 4-of-7 shooting in the championship game and played 32 minutes. His teammate, freshman forward Kawhi Leonard, scored 16 points and piled up a career-high 21 rebounds. Junior guard D.J. Gay, who played 119 minutes of a possible 120 this tournament, racked up 11 points and two rebounds. Even the Aztecs with broken hands (freshman guard Chase Tapley) and broken
fingers (sophomore guard Tyrone Shelley) made their marks on the championship game. “This was a wonderful team victory and we savor and underline ‘team,’” head coach Steve Fisher said. “The individual accolades are nice, but you don’t win unless you have a team.” SDSU beat Colorado State in the quarterfinals last week, 72-71, setting up a huge game against then-No. 8 New Mexico in the semifinals. The Aztecs played their best game of the season, shooting 51.9 percent from the floor, and pulled out the 72-69 victory against the nationally ranked Lobos. On Saturday, they finished off their magical tournament run with a controlling 55-45 win against the Rebels on their own home floor. “I felt great pride for our university and particularly for our men’s basketball team and our athletic program,” Fisher said. “I told our team, ‘Enjoy that bus ride home, hug that trophy, and savor this moment, make it an indelible mark you’ll never forget because it doesn’t happen often’’’ SDSU will make its first appearance in the NCAA Tournament since 2005-06, when it also won the MWC Tournament. That year, the Aztecs lost 87-83 in the first round to Indiana. This afternoon, SDSU will find out its seed and its opponent, which can be read at www.thedailyaztec.com ’s LIVE Aztec Gameday Blog today. “I can finally take a deep breath,” Gay said. “(The NCAA Tournament) is something I’ve been waiting for the last two years, something growing up as a little kid I always wanted to play in, and now I have the opportunity to do so.”
Glenn Connelly / Photo Editor
Strasburg No. 1 choice
Despite losing vision, student finds purpose
David J. Olender / Assistant Photo Editor
Edward Lewis SPORTS EDITOR
June 10, 2009
Three years ago, 30 Major League Baseball teams had 1,502 chances to take Stephen Strasburg in the MLB draft. None did. On Tuesday afternoon, though, it took the Washington Nationals less than four minutes to make Strasburg the No. 1 overall pick in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft. “All they said yesterday was, ‘Congratulations, we’re very excited for you and let’s go from here,’” the San Diego State ace said of the call from the Nationals. “I just celebrated that day with my friends and family at my mom’s house.” Strasburg, considered by many scouts and analysts to be the best amateur pitcher ever, said he’s been to Washington, DC, once when he was a kid and isn’t sure when he will head back to meet with the Nationals face-to-face. As for his immediate plans, he said a little relaxation is necessary.
“I threw 109 innings here so I think it’d be good to just have a little rest time,” Strasburg said. “I think it’s just going to be a good summer to be able to lift and get stronger and have a summer I haven’t had in a while.” Strasburg is coming off a 2009 season in which he posted a 13-1 record, a nationleading 195 strikeouts and a 1.32 earned run average. In his three years at SDSU, the career numbers were otherworldly: a 22-7 record, 375 strikeouts and a 1.59 ERA. There is one number, however, that could be potentially bigger than any statistic he ever put up with the Aztecs: His contract. On Wednesday, super-agent Scott Boras, who said he is acting as Strasburg’s attorney, made it fairly clear that Strasburg’s ability and potential deserves a fitting contract. “I think the idea that an extraordinary player receiving a substantial bonus far above other draft picks has happened before,” said Boras, who rattled off names such as Ben McDonald, J.D. Drew and Mark Teixeira. “Obviously Stephen falls into that class of those players that are really not associated with the inherent elements of any formal draft.” Boras compared Strasburg to a player with the negotiating power of an international player or free agent, as opposed to a regular draft prospect. “The fact of the matter is,” Boras said, “by many scouts’ accounts, he’s the best draft pick in history for a pitcher.” The record deal for the largest guaranteed contract given to an MLB draft pick was the reported five-year, $10.5 million deal pitcher Mark Prior received from the Chicago Cubs in 2001. Many scouts and analysts believe Strasburg’s contract will top that number, somewhere in the $12-$20 million range. Boras, who declined to give a ballpark figure for Strasburg’s contractual demands, is prepared to do whatever it takes to get Strasburg’s deal done. “I would say 99 percent of the time you’re going to reach an agreement with the Major League affiliate and the athlete,” Boras said, “and if that does not happen, then obviously you would look to all the available resources that one would have.” Those resources include next year’s draft, international play or even a return to SDSU. But Strasburg isn’t worried about any of that right now, and is focused on his relaxation. “We’ll just have to wait and see,” Strasburg said. “I’m just soaking in this moment.”
Faryar Borhani EDITOR IN CHIEF
March 25, 2010
It wasn’t fast, but rather gradual. It wasn’t expected, but rather surprising. It wasn’t the worst thing that happened, but rather life changing. During a typical day one can find Jeremy Poincenot enjoying the company of his friends or training for his next physical feat. Poincenot is like any other San Diego State student, attending classes and enjoying a busy social life; only there is one key difference: He can’t see what he is doing. The last few years of the 20-year-old’s life have been nothing short of rough — filled with multiple misdiagnoses, physically grueling medical treatments and, u l t i m a t e l y, a p r o f o u n d acceptance for a new lifestyle. The international business junior suffers from a rare, incurable, mitochondrial disease known as L e b e r ’s h e r e d i t a r y o p t i c neuropathy — and it has left him legally blind. “After my vision went blurry after my 19th birthday in October, we went to see an optometrist,” Poincenot said. “I spent Christmas break of 2008 in and out of hospitals.” The optometrist he visited had thought Poincenot was suffering from a brain tumor, which an MRI confirmed negative. He was then misdiagnosed with Neuromyelitis optica — a disease that would have left him completely blind and in a wheelchair. “I spent Christmas (break) in a hospital bed for 10 days,” Poincenot Kallie Larsen / Staff Photographer
said. “I would sit there for four to six hours a day while there were tubes connected to my neck — I could see the blood in my system come in and out.” The plasma treatment that intended to bring back his eyesight didn’t help. And through his three-month stretch from October to January, his vision drifted slowly from a perfect 20 / 20 to a legally blind 20 / 3,000. In January of last year, after many misdiagnoses and several unneeded treatments, Poincenot visited a specialist at the UC Los Angeles’ Jules Stein Eye Institute, where he was confirmed to have LHON. The disease is so rare that the specialist had only seen five confirmed cases in his life. “The specialist gave me a pep talk and made me understand that this was something that I can live with,” Poincenot said. “And it made me feel a lot better.” But perhaps what was one of the biggest blessings in this traumatic time was the introduction to Dr. Alfredo Sadun at the University of Southern California’s Doheny Eye Institute. Sadun’s specialty is in LHON, and it was this aspect that comforted Poincenot the most. “He wanted to check with me once every four months to see if my condition was improving or not,” Poincenot said. Unfortunately his vision did not improve, but it did stabilize. His eyesight today can be compared to the shape of a large donut; there is a large black hole in his central vision while his surrounding vision is still fairly intact. And while his vision has reached a level of legal blindness, his outlook
CONTINUED ON PAGE 16
CONGRATULATIONS KILSUK!!! From your husband, sons Jonathan and Joseph, daughter-in-law Ange, grandsons Daniel and Michael: Congratulations for achieving the Outstanding Graduate in your major! We are all so proud of you and you deserve it!
You’ve always said, “I can do it, I can do it, I can do it!” And we never doubted you. You did it, you did it, you did it! And we are so proud of you! With all our love and our best wishes for an exhilarating, fulfilling and fun journey. Mom, Dad and Lucas
From all of us, We love you and admire you!
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” - Lao Tse
Congratulations Nicole Callas
Your accomplishments are beyond our wildest expectations and we believe the best is yet to come for you. Love you, Mom, Dad and Kelly
Congratulations JASON KIRBY! Graduation is a time to celebrate your achievements, prepare for a future of opportunities and embrace a world of infinite possibilities. Do not go where the path may lead; go instead where there is no path and leave a trail. - Your loved ones!
Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breaths away.YOU sure made all of us very proud of your accomplishments and overcoming many bumps on the road. You shine as a shining beacon of hope for all of us! Your loved ones & your close friends!
Luis Adolfo Chavez Correa My journey in SD, SDSU made me a real Aztec member. I had the chance to be part of this amazing experience and meet a lot of valuable people around the world. Graduating is just the beginning of our professional career. I wish everyone success doing what you love most. Congrats Class of 2010!
SPOTLIGHT: Despite losing vision, student finds purpose CONTINUED FROM PAGE 13 said.“ But now I have become so much more proactive and do so many other things, I feel like I am leading more of a purpose-driven life than I was even close to before.” And it’s true. Just within the last year he has completed his first half-marathon, rode in a bike race benefitting research for blindness and has taken up painting with his new girlfriend — who he met at the Rose Bowl last year during the SDSU football game against UCLA. And although it takes strong character to raise spirits in times like these, Poincenot is quick to acknowledge the help he has had along the way.
“... I have become so much more proactive ... I feel like I am leading more of a purpose-driven life than I was even close to before.” “When I realized my vision was going to be lost forever I really wanted to drop out of school because I thought when people found out I was legally blind they would treat me differently,” he said. “Sigma Phi Epsilon was the reason I came back without a doubt.” Poincenot credits his fraternity brothers with their undying support during his first few months of adjusting, especially his best friend Josh Roush. “The semester I came back to SDSU, I only took two classes: TFM160 and Music151,” Poincenot said. “Josh ( Roush) walked with me to and from class, he took the same two classes with me, took notes
for me, helped me study and even interact with professors.” This semester Poincenot is taking his first international business classes and emphasizing in French, but it hasn’t been easy. He takes his tests in the Testing Accommodations office, using a large 22inch monitor that enlarges the words letterby-letter until he can read the questions. Answering his cell phone and leaving Facebook comments is just as difficult, as he uses an electronic magnifier to increase letter size in the same fashion. Many aspects of Poincenot’s life have changed, including basic tasks such as driving, reading or even seeing who is calling his name on campus, but he has still found an ability to continue doing something he has always loved. “Every Sunday in middle and high school I would golf with my dad,” he said. “When I was in the hospital during that Christmas break he (his dad) bought me a new set of clubs which was a little weird to me because I didn’t think I would play again.” But he was wrong. Poincenot and his father placed second in the Blind Golf Association’s state tournament and third in the national tournament. “It’s a really emotional thing because it’s a great bonding experience for the two of us and he gets just as nervous as me if I hit a bad shot,” Poincenot said. As the young man known to his friends as “J-Pot” learns to accept his new lifestyle, he has now set his goals toward finding a cure for LHON. This semester the annual SDSU Greek Week and Sigma Phi Epsilon philanthropy will help raise money to reach Poincenot’s goal of $50,000 — all of which will directly fund LHON research. While many believe that seeing is believing, Poincenot is a true testament that seeing isn’t needed to believe in oneself for a richer and fuller life — and if things really get bad, “it can always be worse,” Poincenot said.
Congratulations Mallory Ann Baker! Always our Super Star and Shinning Star!!
From the soccer fields in San Ramon thru the fields of Ghana to the play ground of Boys & Girls Club, your foot prints leave their mark of a generous heart and vibrant mind. We are so proud of what you have accomplished and what the future holds in store. Love, Mom, Dad, Brandon, Grandma Toby, Grandpa Norman, Auntie Meryl, Grandma Baker & Tom
DAVID POPE Congratulations Chappy 11! It has been four years of great memories. Thank you to my family and friends for making my time at San Diego State better than I could have ever imagined! Love you guys, Sara
For a couple months, I dated the third hottest English major at this school.
That’s pretty much all I’ve got.
We Did It!
I only made it this far because of the tireless support from my friends and family. I love you all! Thanks Mom and Dad, JD, James, Linda, Andrzey, and my beautiful lil sis Ashton!
Congratulations Luis Heffran!
Whatever your dreams might be, may each become a reality! Happy Graduation! We are all very proud of YOU!
- Whitney Lawrence
Congratulations Filippo Goodman! CONGRATULATIONS ASHMINA! They say twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. Thatâ€™s for the suckers that got cheated. Not I.
We are so proud of YOU. Going to tough times, overcoming the uncertanties, and marching for better tomorrow youâ€™ve MADE IT! The world of opportunities awaits YOU! - Your best friends
18 YEAR IN PHOTOS
Glenn Connelly / Photo Editor
David J. Olender / Assistant Photo Editor
David J. Olender / Assistant Photo Editor
David J. Olender / Assistant Photo Editor
David J. Olender / Assistant Photo Editor
Glenn Connelly / Photo Editor
Jeff Lewis/ Staff Photographer
Daniel Meza / Staff Photographer
David J. Olender / Assistant Photo Editor
David J. Olender / Assistant Photo Editor
College life made possible by family, friends and roommates. Thank you all.
Stephanie Rosas In my time in SD, SDSU became my home and my Aztec friends became my family. It was an unforgettable experience that came with a ticket to a whole new world. I wish the best to all the graduates, and as Ralph Valdo said: "Donâ€™t go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.â€? Congrats Class of 2010!
Congratulations Sakic! No doubt about it, we're gonna shout about it! Hip, hip hooray for Sakic today! Can you hear me now? Good. Your close friends!
CONGRATULATIONS KYLE! If you can imagine it, you can achieve it; if you can dream it, you can become it.
Congratulations! Congratulations to our special officers:
You made us all proud.
Kyle Doherty, Lisa Trueblood & Emma Miller
Your accomplishments are yet to come!
May the world be your new frontier!
- IB Society
WE are proud of you ARIADNA MARTINEZ! We hope your dreams take you to the corners of your smiles, to the highest of your hopes, to the windows of your opportunities, and to the most special places your heart has ever known. - Your friends!
JOHN GLASGOW Congratulations Jesse! To All of My College Memories, and May the Friendships Last Forever “In the business world, everyone is paid in two coins: cash and experience. Take the experience first; the cash will come later.” - Harold Geneen I love you Dad, Mom, and Ryan; Mal you are very special to me! I would never have graduated without all of your support.
CONGRATULATIONS Ivo Ivanov! Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine.We all know you will accomplish many great things. Very proud of you! Your Bratko
These past four years have given me great memories and perhaps the greatest experience of my life. As two of my best friends graduate, and I graduate, I am excited to see what the future holds.
Congratulations MIKHAIL! With realization of one’s potential and self confidence in one’s ability, one can build a better world.That one is you MIKHAIL. Congratualtions and never forget that the world is your oyster! Your loved ones!
Congratulations â€œLil Dancerâ€?
Congratulations on completing your BS in Accounting in only 3 short years! What an accomplishment!
We are so proud of you and your numerous accomplishments. You have set your goals and have achieved them all with excellence. We daily thank God for you, our gift from Heaven! May you continue to live out your vision. We love you, Dad and Mom
We know that many wonderful developments lie ahead of you! Have fun in Boston! Love, Mom and Dad
Published on May 17, 2010