Generation Now

Summer 2011

Generation Now

Presidents Message
The Buzz
Preparedness Pays
Sac State creatse buzz among future Hornets
Generation Now
Graduation celebration
2011 Presidents Medal Recipient: Monica Dean
Cutting-Edge Curriculum
A Cycle of Sustainability
2010-11 Hornet Highlights
Join the Club
Heidi Poppelreiter
Kim Miyamoto
Class Notes

Presidents Message

I have heard a lot of positive feedback about recent changes at Sacramento State over the last few months, and I appreciate alumni and supporters who take the time to stay engaged with our great University.

Many of the reactions center on the amazing physical transformation of the campus. The Well, our state-of-the-art recreation and wellness center, has won accolades and LEED Gold certification for its sustainability features, and our new home for nursing, Folsom Hall, replicates a modern hospital to serve as a teaching lab for our state’s future nurses.

We have also implemented a number of initiatives that may be less apparent but provide incredible value to our students and the community.

For instance, our professional science master’s degree program recently graduated its first students. The program focuses on practical research and laboratory projects to prepare graduates for careers in the innovative field of stem cell research.

Sacramento State is creating another new doctoral program—this time in physical therapy. Offering a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree is vital to both our students and the region, because it will be required for accreditation in 2015. You can read more about the physical therapy program, as well as the professional science master’s degree, in this issue of the magazine.

Our College of Business Administration also celebrated the inaugural year of the Student Investment Fund, in which finance students serve as securities analysts and portfolio managers with actual money. With careful study and advice from our faculty and community partners, the students beat the S&P 500 in investment performance in the fund’s first year.

At Sacramento State, we are continuing to work to make the teaching in our classrooms and labs relevant to today’s job market. Our students benefit every day from this commitment, and employers all across the nation are taking notice.

Thank you for your support of our students, and I look forward to sharing even greater successes in the future.


Alexander Gonzalez

Back to top.

The Buzz

Students help advance University’s outreach

Who better to make the case for supporting Sacramento State students than, well, students?

The newly created Student Advancement Council is doing just that by connecting student ambassadors with alumni and supporters of the University.

“It’s wonderful to see the University through a young person’s eyes," says Vince A. Sales, associate vice president of development. “Ultimately, we are here for the students, and alumni are able to recognize that immediately when we involve students in our efforts.”

University Advancement staff advise, support, train, coach and mentor the advancement council members. One initiative, “Discover Hornet Pride,” has the students interviewing alumni about their careers and experiences, and hosting campus tours.

Jennifer Quincy is helping with social media. “I have been able to expand my knowledge as to how many different groups there are on campus and in the community,” Quincy says. “It has helped me with my leadership skills as well as my management skills."

Business major Kyle Decoque, program coordinator, says he has developed his networking acumen. “The conversations I have are so interesting,” Decoque says, “To sit next to the president of a company and talk to them about their experiences here and what they have done since they graduated (Sac State), more than anything it’s inspiring.”

Steve Heath (’70, Journalism), president and chief executive officer of United Way in Sacramento, is impressed with the group. “It is giving the students a marketable skill,” Heath says. “One of the sectors in the community that continues to grow is the nonprofit sector. There are opportunities out there for folks with experience and knowledge of how to do this sort of work.”

The group is also raising funds for scholarships. Its 1947 Society “Hornet Philanthropy Challenge” is charged with raising funds by asking current students to donate $19.47 to the University’s alumni scholarship and student leadership programs.

Books by Sac State Faculty

Russell DiSilvestro, assistant professor, Department of Philosophy

Human Capacities and Moral Status (2010)

DiSilvestro argues for concrete conclusions on the moral status of humans with lesser capacities, such as those suffering from brain diseases or genetic disorders, those in a permanent vegetative state, fetuses and embryos.

Patrick Ettinger, associate professor,Department of History

Imaginary Lines: Border Enforcement and the Origins of Undocumented Immigration, 1882-1930 (2009)

Ettinger offers the first complete historical study of immigrant smuggling and undocumented entry into the United States at the turn of the 20th century, and the federal enforcement practices and immigration policies designed to stem the flow across northern and southern borders.

Liam Murphy, assistant professor, Department of Anthropology

Believing in Belfast: Charismatic Christianity after the Troubles (2010)

Writing for scholars and the educated general reader, Murphy builds the case that charismatic religion embraces the modern globalizing world while still maintaining the basic elements that led to Northern Ireland’s long history of violence and social stratification.

Q&A with Tasha Ketphanh 2011

Balancing Act

It didn’t look like Tasha Ketphanh would ever make it to college. She was married at 16, a common occurrence in Laotian culture, and pregnant with her second child when she graduated high school. Yet six years later, she began studying speech pathology and audiology at Sac State. The mother of four (ages 11, 7, 5 and 4) now has a brand-new diploma and big hopes for herself and her children.

Q: How do you juggle parenthood with being a full-time student?

A: My husband is very supportive, and my brother-in-law helps with the kids when I am not home. My kids are mature for their age. The older two help each other with homework and read to the younger ones if I can’t. During football and basketball season it gets a little crazy, though.

Q: Does your family study together?

A: My oldest son creates flash cards and quizzes me. Once, when I was learning the muscles of the abdomen, I drew on his stomach to see where the ligaments were. My experience has opened his eyes to the fact that he can do whatever he sets his mind to. He says he wants to become a surgeon.

Q: How has Sac State helped you reach your goals?

A: I received some grants from Sac State, which really took a lot of pressure off of me because I didn’t have to work every single day.

Q: Have you done any hands-on work?

A: I had a job at a group home helping emotionally disturbed teenagers learn independent living skills. Last summer, I was an in-home behavior tutor for children with autism. A lot of children living with autism have barriers with speech.

Q: What's next?

A: I am returning this fall for graduate school. I want to work in the field for a few years, maybe in schools as a speech therapist. I plan on getting a Ph.D. and working in research.

Cool Course

Marketing 122: Buyer Behavior

Description: In Professor Beomjoon (Peter) Choi’s Buyer Behavior course, students attempt to decipher what makes a shopper’s mind tick by scrutinizing buyer motivations, attitudes, choices and behaviors.

Classwork: An interactive classroom environment, including plenty of reading, projects, exams and guest speakers, facilitates an appreciation of marketing concepts. In one case, inviting a local consignment store owner for a discussion of how she might promote her business on a limited budget resulted in her hiring several students to implement their ideas. “I always think we can learn more by doing or participating,” Choi says. “Sitting in class and listening to a lecture may be okay but is not the best for learning, at least to me.”

Assignments: Students visited two competing retail stores to note details such as lighting, layout, smell, music and service. “Based on their observations and secondary data, they were then asked to compare the two stores and provide suggestions for improvement for each store,” Choi says. “Most students found the assignment intriguing.”

Students say: Vanessa Labriola says Professor Choi teaches with enthusiasm and excitement about every topic. “He makes understanding marketing concepts fun and he inspired me to become more passionate about the marketing field.”

Back to top.


Energy savings award

Sac State’s new recreation and fitness center is already drawing dividends. In April, the Sacramento Municipal Utility District presented a $75,572 award to Sacramento State for energy efficiency at The Well. The Well exceeded state energy standards by 20 percent through features such as fans that reduce the need for air conditioning, and large windows and skylights that reduce the need for artificial lighting during the day.

Zipping around town

Sacramento State will join the Zipcar car-sharing network this fall, when two Zipcars will be stationed at the residence halls. For an annual fee—$35 for students and $50 for everyone else—plus a $25 application fee, participants will have access to the vehicles 24 hours a day. Although students are the primary audience for Zipcars, they’ll be available for faculty, staff and other members of the public. Read more about Sac State's tie to Zipcar on page 18.

Top professor

Virginia L. Dixon, professor of educational leadership and policy studies, has been named Outstanding Professor of the Year by the Association of California School Administrators, Region 3. Dixon, who served as associate dean for the College of Education for six years, also has extensive experience in educational and organizational development.

Fulbright Scholar

Sacramento State Government Professor James DeShaw Rae has been selected as a Fulbright Scholar and will teach and study in the People’s Republic of China through 2012. Rae’s specialty is promoting international peace, justice and reconciliation particularly in strife-torn regions. He has worked as a researcher at the U.S. Institute of Peace in Washington, D.C., a nonpartisan think-tank sponsored by Congress to help resolve internal conflicts. He has been at Sacramento State since 2006.

Back to top.

Preparedness pays

Comprehensive emergency plan protects campus community

Earthquakes in Haiti and Japan. Shootings in Arizona. Floods in the Southeast. We read about crises in the news, and we hope we never have to deal with such issues at home. But, in the event the worst-case scenario happens, the Sac State campus intends to be prepared.

Preparing for the safety of more than 30,000 students, faculty and staff in an emergency at Sacramento State requires education and coordination. An active shooter or terrorist event, cyber attack, or natural or man-made disaster are the top concerns identified by the University’s 2011 Multi-Hazard Emergency Plan.

“The safety of the campus community is our primary concern so we try to prepare for a whole spectrum of events,” University Police Sergeant Bill Gnagy says.

The campus has different levels of emergency response. Each building has a team of trained individuals who would respond to disasters. Gnagy calls them the backbone of the system. Individuals at a management level would staff the emergency operations center, handling the logistics involved in keeping the University up and running.

Drills and discussion-based tabletop exercises for campus employees provide ongoing training. Last year, 1,000 people received additional awareness training, giving them knowledge to identify and report unusual activity on campus. Students, faculty and staff are also encouraged to sign up for the Emergency Notification System, which sends text, voice mail and email messages to alert users that an emergency situation is underway.

“What we need is an early warning so we can get there before something serious occurs and gets out of control,” Gnagy says.

University Police are first responders to any disaster, but they coordinate and depend upon connections with the Sacramento Police and Fire Departments.

Back to top.

Sac State creates buzz among future Hornets

First-Graders learn what it takes to get to college

They might not get there until at least 2022, but many students in Jamie Halsey’s first-grade class at Coyote Ridge Elementary School in Roseville, Calif., are already thinking about attending Sac State.

These future Hornets are being schooled on what it takes to get into college because Coyote Ridge—and all seven other campuses in the Dry Creek Joint Elementary School District—have adopted an “On the Road to College” theme this year.

The theme is part of a program designed to help the children, and their families, learn the “language” of college, Halsey (’99, Psychology, Italian Studies) says. “Research shows that when children know about college and understand what it takes to get there, they are willing to work toward it as a goal.”

Each classroom adopted a different university, and Halsey was thrilled to pull her alma mater out of a hat when names were drawn last summer.

In her classroom, the green and gold color scheme is prevalent. Students shake Sac State pompoms to applaud each other’s successes and wear Sac State colors on “College Spirit Wednesdays.” The students have been introduced to a member of the Sac State track team and recently the University mascot, Herky the Hornet, came for a surprise visit. The entire first grade also visited Sac State as part of a class field trip in early May. “They all came back on fire, just so excited to go there,” reports Principal Michelle Hermeier.

Coyote Ridge teachers incorporate college-related words into their vocabulary assignments and classroom discussions. Halsey’s first-graders are learning “graduate,” “goal,” “career” and “achievement.”

Many colleges have been adopted by the district’s schools, but Hermeier is fairly certain there is a Sac State classroom on every campus. "We have so many people who went to school there.”

Back to top.

Generation Now: Connected,Caring, Diverse

Today’s Sac State students are a reflection of their era

If you want to see the face of the typical Sac State student, take a look at Dalila Sanchez. The communication studies major entered Sac State directly from high school. She is close to her parents and values giving back to her community. She embraces technological tools, but not at the expense of personal interaction with campus faculty and staff.

Sift through Sac State’s demographic data and you’ll discover two predominant trends: a growing diversity in the student body and an increase in “traditional age” students enrolling right out of high school.

“Sac State is and always has been a very diverse university,” says Ed Mills, associate vice president for enrollment management. “But we are increasingly more so as a reflection of the community around us and the growing number of students in previously underrepresented communities reaching out for higher education.”

Many of those students are deciding to come to the University because of a personal touch. Outreach efforts directed at traditionally underserved populations, such as the Super Sunday campaign where campus officials share information about higher education at area African American churches, are alerting students to the opportunities Sac State offers. Similar programs target the Latino and Asian Pacific Islander communities while another focuses on the area’s most racially mixed middle and high school.

The efforts are paying off. Reports from the University’s Office of Institutional Research say Sac State’s Latino population has seen the largest jump in numbers, increasing 109 percent in 20 years. In 2010, Latinos comprised 18.3 percent of the University’s 27,033-member student body, compared to 8.7 percent in 1990.

In the same span, Filipino enrollees have increased by 124 percent, students from Southeast Asia by 324 percent and African Americans by 41.

First in line

Dalila Sanchez’ parents worked in agricultural fields, but they didn’t want their daughter to follow suit. “They didn’t want me to have this life, they wanted me to have a career,” she explains.

Now, the first-generation student from rural Arbuckle, Calif., is one semester away from graduating with a degree in communication studies. Like so many of today’s Sac State students, Sanchez wants to give back to the community that gave her so much.

“I want to return to my high school because many of the students don’t graduate,” she says. “I see they have a lot of potential, but sometimes they are overlooked. I want to encourage them to better themselves.

“My parents have been taking care of me for a long time,” she adds. “I want to be able to support them and take care of them as they get older so they don’t have to worry about anything economically.”

Sanchez says being the first generation in her family to attend college has changed her life. “The fact that I am becoming an educated Latina able to say I graduated and have a degree means a lot,” she says.

Cultures combine

Computer science major Cesar Chavez is an example of the campus’ multicultural scope. The native Spanish-speaker began studying Japanese and computer science his freshman year. “I thought it would be fun to learn the language if I wanted to go into the video game industry.”

Chavez joined the Japan Club and became an active member and officer. He spearheaded events like an “origami-athon” and brought performers to campus to introduce students to Japanese culture. In 2010, he did a two-month internship in Japan, working in various jobs at food co-ops and honing his language skills.

“I like to say I am not tri-lingual, I am just bad at three languages,” Chavez laughs.

Chavez believes exploring and experiencing other cultures gives students multiple advantages. “The world is becoming very open and wherever you go you will interact with people from other countries,” he says. “It helps open your eyes to the world around you and understand people from a different perspective.”

Alysson Satterlund, director of student organizations and leadership, says about 40 of the 300 clubs on campus are culturally focused and reflect the growing diversity of the campus.

“As our campus gets more diverse in terms of experience, culture and ethnicity, our clubs grow and are incredibly active,” she says. “Our students are amazingly diverse, and I mean that in the most inclusive, broadest of ways—their experiences, interests, preparations and aspirations.”

Youth movement

It is no accident that the number of undergraduates age 19 and younger has increased 62 percent since 1990, from 3,392 to 5,495 in 2010. Sac State is paying close attention to recent high school graduates in an effort to increase retention and graduation rates.

“We are trying to encourage a larger mix of traditional students who start here and finish here,” says Mills. “When they become engaged, avail themselves of tutoring and get involved with faculty, a lot of good comes out of it.”

According to Mills, the number of first-year students returning for their second year has increased about one percent every year. “Returning freshmen are at 80 percent, which for an urban campus is pretty high,” he says. “We are putting tremendous emphasis on progression and success, and it really engages the students. I think they are surprised at the level of involvement the faculty and staff want to have in connecting with them and making sure they are on target for success.”

The ultimate goal is greater parity between transfer and first-time freshmen, says Mills. In 1990, transfer students represented 70 percent of freshmen and first-time students, 30 percent. Those numbers dropped to 56 percent transfer and 44 percent first-time freshmen in 2010.

Larger numbers of first-time freshmen also create a more vibrant campus, says Lori Varlotta, vice president for student affairs.

“They are more likely to work and study on campus, get connected to activities and create the buzz associated with campus life,” she says. “It gives us a better chance to build relationships with students.”

Varlotta says on-campus programs are overwhelmingly attended, with many evening concerts, movies and comedy shows attracting hundreds of students. New facilities like The Well recreation center, the Academic Information Resource Center and the Hornet Bookstore and café are open late and are gathering spots for students living or lingering on campus.

Generation text

The current crop of students is often defined as Generation Y or the Millennials. Whatever the label, they are distinguished by their tech savvy, a desire for instant feedback and a complete immersion in digital technology. They have never lived without mobile phones or the Internet. They communicate through multiple channels, often all at once, and they expect others to do the same.

“These students are very, very connected,” says Mills. “They think in smaller bites. We have to communicate with them the way they communicate. Our old mechanisms are not going to work anymore.”

Students still thrive on personal interactions, though, says Varlotta. “They want to be able to use their gadgets,but they want a person to be there. They want a combina-tion of technology and human touch.”

Government major Kaitlin Hasenauer agrees. She likes to communicate with professors via email for logistics like class cancellations, but prefers meeting in person. “The Internet can hide your personality and lots of other aspects of you,” she says. “Meeting your professors one-on-one is better. When you meet face-to-face they know you are dedicated.”

Sac State staff have deliberately changed the way they operate to meet students where and how they like to communicate. For example, drop-in services are now routine at the career, advising, counseling and health centers.

“We used to schedule meetings on the hour, but sometimes students simply want to run something by you and get a reassurance,” Varlotta explains. “Now we give students the option to have long appointments or drop in, and they love it.”

Academic offerings may look very different in the future, too, to accommodate students’ desire for “high-tech and high-touch,” such as courses that are part online and part in person. “We’re working on how to translate good classroom
teaching to good online teaching because virtual communities are not going away,” Varlotta says.

Mills says that while conventional wisdom suggests the text-oriented generation is becoming less engaged, the opposite is true. “I think these technologies actually create a more social environment,” he says. “They socialize differently, but they have many more opportunities to connect with each other.”

Indeed, today’s students are interested in getting to know faculty and staff and even talk to their parents more often. “It’s not unusual to be having a conversation with a student and have him say, ‘Let me text my dad,’” Varlotta says. “They are much more connected to friends and families now, and their desire to get constant feedback is increasingly palpable.”

Doing good and giving back

Enrollment statistics show another positive trend: Today’s students are interested in helping others and serving society. Enrollment in the College of Health and Human Services has grown 61 percent since 1990 and contains the highest percentage of declared majors (21.3) on campus. Interest in teaching professions is also increasing after several years of decline.

Mills believes a heightened awareness of natural disasters and social injustices around the world has made students more community-focused.

“Fifteen years ago, students were concerned about the highest-paying salary they could get upon graduating,” Mills says. “But today’s sentiment is ‘Let’s help the world instead.’ It’s more reminiscent of the generation that came through in the 1970s.”

It’s also a natural extension of the University’s location in California’s capital. Public service is essentially the industry of the Sacramento Region and students are drawn by the ability to gain real-world experience as part of their education through a multitude of internship and service-learning opportunities.

Daniel Logan (’11, Geography) is one example. After spending a few years working in retail, he returned to school to pursue a career in a humanitarian field that had the most urgent situations and people in the greatest need, namely working with refugees or disaster victims. As an intern with Open Doors, a nonprofit that helps refugees resettle in the Sacramento area, Logan helped people escaping political, religious and ethnic persecution find apartments, make medical appointments and look for jobs. He has since been hired by the organization.

“Hurricanes, riots and civil wars happen all the time, and there should be a way to address these issues and respond more efficiently and rapidly,” Logan says. “That is what motivated me to finish my education and get involved.”

“The world doesn’t need saving, it just needs change,” says Monica Dean, an environmental studies major who received the President’s Medal as the year’s top graduate. She sees building consensus on water use in places like the Middle East as a way to open dialogue about other issues, such as achieving peace. “We need a different perspective. That’s how things really get better.”

Varlotta views Logan, Dean and the rest of the Sac State student body as a “positive” generation. “They have a sense of responsibility but not an overdeveloped sense of entitlement,” she says. “They want to take responsibility and get involved. I think they will make a difference in the communities we send them into after they graduate.”

All in the Family

When dietetics major Charity Rose King began considering college, Sac State wasn’t on her radar, but her dad changed her mind. “He told me how much he liked Sac State, and that if I gave it a chance I would love it too,” she says. “He was the reason I came here.”

The Lodi, Calif., resident is part of a growing number of students whose family members attended Sac State. And she has enjoyed it as much as her father did—maybe more. “I am getting my hands dirty with all of the things the campus has to offer,” including being a resident advisor and orientation leader, acting in theatrical productions and volunteering with the sexual assault prevention program.

King anticipates working as a life coach or with people who have diabetes or weight issues. “My passion is helping people and getting their lives on track,” she says.

Her desire to help others led King to apply to be an orientation leader, tasked with guiding students through class registration and other processes.

“I love helping students get acclimated because I know how lost and confused I was at first,” she says. “I heard Sac State has one of the best orientation programs and I am proud to be a part of that.”

Back to top.

Graduation Celebration:

Introducing…The Class of 2011

Pomp and circumstance, and pride and joy filled the air at this year’s spring commencement ceremonies. Nearly 4,600 students were eligible to cross the stage during the two-day celebration, with the most —1,500—coming from the College of Health and Human Services.

This year’s events included the awarding of the President’s Medal to the outstanding graduate of the academic year—environmental studies major Monica Dean—during the ceremony for the College of Social Sciences and Interdisciplinary Studies. That ceremony also featured a commencement address by Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson.

The May 20-21 ceremonies also featured the presentation of an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts to Latino broadcasting pioneer Hugo Morales and the President’s Medals for Distinguished Service to Wells Fargo Regional President Felix Fernandez and University Foundation at Sacramento State Chief Financial Officer Pamela Stewart.

Awards recognize service to University and community

During spring commencement ceremonies, both President Alexander Gonzalez and the California State University system have the honor of recognizing individuals for extraordinary accomplishment.

The President‘s Medal for Distinguished Service, honoring individuals who have provided outstanding service to Sac State, went to Fernandez and Stewart.

“Felix Fernandez and Pam Stewart have supported our students over many years, and as leaders in the community, they bring valuable expertise to our campus,” says Gonzalez. “They have always been dedicated to creating greater opportunities for students through private contributions that go where help is needed most.”

The CSU system bestowed an Honorary Doctorate in Fine Arts on Morales, founder of Radio Bilingüe, Inc., the National Latino Public Radio Network.

“Hugo Morales is a visionary,” says Gonzalez. “The pioneering radio network he founded for Spanish-speaking migrant workers provided culturally relevant content that helped them improve their health, civic participation and prospects in American life.”

Back to top.

2011 President’s Medal Recipient: Monica Dean

Environmental studies major selected year’s outstanding graduate

Monica Dean is both a water scientist and a peace activist. She is also an optimist, who hopes to explore the issue of access to water as a means to broker peace in conflict-torn areas.

During an internship with Environmental Studies Professor Michelle Stevens, Dean started Hima Mesopotamia, a non-profit organization devoted to water issues and peace in the Middle East. She hopes to continue to study international water equity issues and has been accepted to Tel Aviv University and is considering a fellowship with Environment America.

“Sac State has done a wonderful job of preparing me for the real world and providing me with the opportunities I’ve had,” Dean says. “Sac State promotes leaders and definitely gives you the skills to develop as a leader.”

In addition to her studies she has served as president of the Jewish Student Union, as a campus representative for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and was active in the service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega.

Back to top.

Cutting-Edge Curriculum

Academic offerings change to keep up with the times

To ensure students graduate prepared to meet society’s shifting needs and trends, Sac State constantly evaluates, adjusts and augments its curriculum. Recent adjustments include offering advanced degrees in stem cell research and physical therapy, fine-tuning the environmental sciences degree to help job seekers, and better serving future communicators in a world that increasingly receives its news through social media.

Biology: Professional Science Master’s Degree in Stem Cell Research

The College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics has created a new graduate program in stem cell research that is “leading-edge and fills a very different niche,” explains Tom Peavy, associate professor of biological sciences and academic coordinator for the program. It is a 20-month course of study developed through a partnership with the UC Davis Stem Cell Program and the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine that includes a six-month paid internship and an intensive stem cell techniques training course.

The master’s degree in stem cell research has been designed to “develop the lab managers of the future, who are educated in good manufacturing practices, highly trained in the policies followed by the Federal Drug Administration and familiar with the nuances of clinical trials,” Peavy notes. Program participants will help develop new cures and treatments for brain and spinal cord injuries, neurodegenerative disorders, cartilage degeneration, burns and more.

The program’s first cohort graduated in May, and all have already been offered jobs, Peavy notes.

Environmental Studies: Bachelor of Science Degree

The field of environmental studies has come a long way since it was first conceived in the 1970s, says Dudley Burton, environmental studies department chair. “It took a long time for the environmental field to emerge as an accepted academic discipline.”

But all that is changing rapidly, especially with passage of the National Environmental Policy Act and new laws regarding hazardous waste, clean air, water and use of public lands, he notes.

As a result, Sac State recently announced it will offer a bachelor of science in addition to its bachelor of arts degree in environmental studies, retroactive to Fall 2010. The arts degree focuses on culture, policies and economics, while the science degree covers chemistry, geology, biology and geography.

This shift puts students on equal ground as they compete for technical jobs. “Some state hiring designations and qualifications required the B.S.,” Burton says, and although Sac State graduates had the necessary education, “They couldn’t compete because they didn’t have the appropriate degree designation.”

Journalism and Communication Studies: Digital Media Minor

These days, news travels the globe faster than communicators can absorb and edit it, as more and more people are “tweeting,” uploading videos to the web and using Facebook to spread breaking news. “It is a challenge for editors,” concedes Mark Ludwig, associate professor of communication studies. “This new media offers new ways for journalists to disseminate information, so we strongly recommend that our journalism and communications studies students consider the ‘digital media minor.’”

The digital media minor offers courses in multimedia communication, online publishing, capturing and editing digital images, and web design. Yet, it is only part of the department’s overall mission to develop critical thinkers and ethical communicators.

“When our students graduate, they will use these new media tools on the job, but they need to know how to write and communicate first. We teach them how to gather information, do an interview, think critically, and make sense of the story for viewers and readers. You’re going to need those basic skills,” Ludwig stresses, no matter what medium you use to deliver the message.

Physical Therapy: Doctoral Degree

Sac State is within striking distance of offering a doctorate of physical therapy program starting in Fall 2012, according to Susan McGinty, professor and director of Sac State’s physical therapy program.

The University offers a master’s degree, but is upgrading it to meet the healthcare needs of the region and Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education requirements that all physical therapy education programs offer the doctorate by 2015.

The approval process has been long and involved review by a number of campus committees and state and national associations, but McGinty is confident it will receive its long-sought stamp of approval. “We have reorganized current courses, strengthened them to reflect overall program outcomes and added new areas of study,” such as in pathophysiology, neuroscience, patient management, pharmacology, diagnostic imaging, geriatrics, health and wellness, and an advanced musculoskeletal course.

“There is a projected 32.7 percent increase in the demand for physical therapists in the greater Sacramento Region over the next 10 years, and there are profound shortages throughout the country,” McGinty notes. “This will allow us to help fill this critical health workforce need.”

Back to top.

A Cycle of Sustainability

Alumni contribute to green energy initiatives around the country and on campus

To use a recycling metaphor, they’re coming full circle.

Sac State alumni are returning to the campus where they earned degrees that led to careers in environmental services, clean energy and sustainability to work on projects or provide services to help the campus do more of the same.

Dan Grossman (’83, Finance and Real Estate) used his dual degrees to start career-building businesses from the ground up. Now he’s an executive with Zipcar—the world’s leading car sharing network—and will bring this environmentally friendly transportation solution to his alma mater this fall.

Ed Jerome (’93, Mechanical Engineering) was hired by PG&E right after graduation to work on energy efficiency projects. Today, as director of utility programs for EnerNOC, a national energy efficiency consulting firm, he manages the company’s energy efficiency contracts with utilities. He has worked with Sac State to oversee several projects that will increase energy efficiency and reduce consumption in campus buildings.

Paul Lau (’84, Electrical Power Engineering) is SMUD’s assistant general manager for customer, distribution and technology. As an undergraduate, he interned for SMUD. Today, he oversees a number of joint SMUD-Sac State energy efficiency projects, including the California Smart Grid Center. Located on the Sac State campus, Smart Grid is California’s primary center for applied research on emerging smart grid technologies which apply advanced computer intelligence and networking abilities to the electricity delivery system.

This focus on clean energy, reduced consumption and maximized energy efficiency is not random coincidence, notes Mike Christensen (’10, Educational Leadership), Sac State’s director of environmental health and safety, and chair of the University’s Sustainability Committee. It’s a
reflection of the University’s increased focus on “making today’s decisions without compromising the needs of future generations.”

The Sustainability Committee first met in 2007, bringing together campus and community representatives from several areas, including academics and governance, environmental health and safety, purchasing, transportation, planning, dining services, recycling and waste management.

Members of the committee have influenced a number of sustainability projects on campus, including construction of two Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) buildings (American River Courtyard student housing and The Well fitness and recreation center), new recycling and food composting programs, installation of solar panels to recharge electric vehicles, use of alternative fuels on fleet buses, and the partnership with Zipcar.

Zipcar’s Grossman recalls when, as a Sac State undergraduate, he had a car on campus but barely used it. Today, owning a car costs an average of $600 monthly, Grossman says. “Zipcar’s car-sharing program is an option for students who can’t afford a car. It’s environmentally advantageous and we figure each Zipcar takes about 15 cars off the road.”

Zipcars will appear on campus this fall and will be available to students, faculty and staff. Rates start at $8 an hour or $66 daily, and include gas, parking, insurance and up to 180 miles of use per day. “Honestly, it feels great to be able to go back to campus and do something like this with Sac State,” Grossman says. “I feel really good about my career and it’s cool to give back.”

Ed Jerome concurs. “Sac State allowed me to get into an energy-related career and grow with it. Besides its environmental benefits, energy management is a good field to be in. The economy may be down, but our work-load has remained strong.” Some of it involves teaming
with Sac State to conduct energy efficiency studies to help the campus make wise choices regarding heating and ventilation system operations within buildings and to recommend modifications that better serve users while reducing energy consumption.

Paul Lau is grateful for the mentoring he received from Power Engineering Professor Milica Markovich at a time when he wasn’t sure what he wanted to study. “True to my professor’s word, I had multiple job offers even before graduation,” Lau says, and he took the one offered by SMUD. With the California Smart Grid Center, he says, “we’re partnering with Sac State to see how a university can upgrade older facilities and antiquated systems in as many as 45 buildings using funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

“We’re also working with the dean of the College of Engineering and Computer Science at Sac State on an educational component, to bring students into real work experiences such as transformer and relay testing. Sac State teaches the students about the process in theory, and when they can put it into practice, it’s a win-win situation for all of us.”

Back to top.

2010-11 Hornet Highlights

Men’s Tennis

Led by three-time Big Sky Conference MVP Kiryl Harbatsiuk and three-time league coach of the year Slava Konikov, the men’s tennis team won its third straight and ninth Big Sky Tournament title. The Hornets completed a perfect conference season and made their eighth NCAA Tournament appearance in 13 years.

Women’s Tennis

The women’s tennis team continued its dominance of the Big Sky Conference after winning its 10th straight league regular season and tournament championship. Moreover, the Hornets made their 10th consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and have now won 82 straight matches against conference competition dating back to 2002.

Women’s Soccer

The women’s soccer team claimed its second Big Sky Conference Tournament title in the last four seasons. Elece McBride was named Big Sky Tournament MVP after scoring the game-winning goals in both the semifinal and championship matches. The Hornets earned the league’s automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament.

Men’s Soccer

Head coach Michael Linenberger’s squad claimed their second consecutive Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Tournament title and won the first NCAA Tournament home match in school history. Since 2008, the Hornets have been unbeatable on their home field, going 16-0-5 in their last 21 games at Hornet Field.

Track and Field

The men’s and women’s track and field squads joined elite company in 2011, becoming just the third program in Big Sky Conference history to sweep the indoor and outdoor championships. The women won their unprecedented fourth consecutive outdoor title and the men were able to claim their first outdoor Big Sky crown in school history. Individually, senior Lea Wallace posted the nation’s second fastest outdoor time in both the 800 and 1500 in Div. I. Ronald Brookins became the first man to win four straight Big Sky long jump titles and ranked in the nation’s top five in the 110-hurdles.

Back to top.

Join the Club

Sure, Sac State students spend their time in the library, in the classroom and at the computer. But they also try out new hobbies, compete against each other in sports, bond over common interests or simply learn more about their chosen fields through a plethora of clubs and activities designed to give them a balanced university experience.

“There are more than 300 clubs on campus and more than 6,500 students are involved in at least one of these groups,” notes Alysson Satterlund, director of the Student Organization and Leadership Office. They run the gamut, from Greek letter associations to salsa dancing, from a club for video game enthusiasts to one that promotes leadership.

Some clubs are career-based, such as the Psychology Society, the Bachelor of Social Work Association or Delta Sigma Pi, a business fraternity that helps its members prepare for course work and their professional aspirations.

Some are for pure pleasure. Sac State’s Bass-Fishing Team won the National Guard FLW College Fishing Western Regional Championship last October. As a bonus, the team brought home $50,000 in prizes, including a $25,000 boat for the club and $25,000 for university scholarships.

Ka Vang (‘10, Health Science), a full-time employee of the Sac State Student Organization and Leadership Office, says club participation helped her overcome shyness and better prepare for the professional world. She joined the Hmong University Student Association as a freshman and says, “I didn’t know anyone on campus until I joined. I was really shy and uncomfortable speaking out.” But, after several years of membership in the group, she found greater self-assurance. “Now I am comfortable speaking in public. It gave me the confidence to communicate with others and offered networking opportunities for work in my field.”

Anyone can start a club, Satterlund notes, but there are some requirements, such as an eight-member minimum, and that no other club like it exists. Each group must have a faculty or staff member serving as an advisor and founders must go through the process of creating a constitution and bylaws, and stated roles for officers. “It’s good training for them,” she says.

“I have met a whole lot of amazing people who I learn from every day,” notes Pablo Baxter, a member of the Leadership Initiative. “I have met new friends, made network contacts, received jobs and awards, grown as a person in so many ways and learned way more than I ever expected to.”

Back to top.

Heidi Poppelreiter

Exploring new frontiers

Heidi Poppelreiter is a driving force behind the International Space Station. Literally. As a NASA flight controller, the one-time Sac State physics student is part of a team that operates the station from the ground in Houston. Poppelreiter’s job is specific: helping various international vehicles rendezvous safely with the space station.

“I make sure the visiting vehicles are safe as they come close to and dock with the station,” Poppelreiter explains.

The docking crafts have many functions. For example, in addition to providing supplies and removing trash from the space station, the Automated Transfer Vehicle operated by the European Space Agency moves the space station out of the path of oncoming debris, such as leftover rocket parts or meteorites. The Automated Transfer Vehicle is also used to boost the station into a different orbit.

Poppelreiter attended Sac State from 2001 to 2003, taking physics classes in anticipation of a career in astronomy.

“I’ve always enjoyed looking at the stars, and I knew for a long time I wanted to work for NASA,” Poppelreiter says. “After I took engineering classes at Sac State I realized how much I really liked it and that led to my desire to work as a flight controller.”

She earned a degree in aerospace and astronautics engineering at Purdue University in Indiana, building on the foundation in physics she gained at Sac State.

“The physics department gave me fantastic guidance on the things I could do in the future,” she says. “I got a good, strong foundation at Sac State that gave me an advantage when I transferred.”

When she is not making the meticulous calculations needed to guide vehicles safely to the space station, Poppelreiter is planning complex docking operations with people from other space programs around the world.

“The job requires a lot of interpersonal skills they don’t teach you in school,” she says. “We are not allowed to share everything with our international partners, but we often help each other with operations and design decisions."

Poppelreiter isn’t an astronaut so has never been in the space station, but she says being a flight controller is “exhilarating.”

“It’s very fast-paced. It takes many hours of very intense operations to actually get a craft docked to the space station,” she says. “Keeping an eye on everything that goes on is quite a challenge, and I love that challenge.”

Back to top.

Kim Miyamoto

Building a foundation of hope

To Kit Miyamoto, disasters are learning experiences that can save lives and properties in the future.

Miyamoto (’97, Civil Engineering) is an internationally recognized expert on high-performance earthquake structural engineering and disaster mitigation, response and reconstruction. Following a violent earthquake, where some people might see rubble and ruin, he’ll see a building that can be repaired and returned to its inhabitants. Or, he will find proof of shoddy construction and building materials destined to fail. His knowledge of structural integrity—before, during and after earthquakes—has saved lives.

Miyamoto is CEO of Miyamoto International, Inc., a global earthquake structural engineering firm based in Sacramento with 11 offices around the world. He is also president of the nonprofit organization Miyamoto Global Disaster Relief. For the past two decades, he and his colleagues have been called upon to scour earthquake-ravaged towns across the globe to assess what went wrong during violent quakes, what could have been done to minimize damage, and what should be done to get communities rebuilt and thriving again.

The company has responded to more than 100 earthquake and hurricane events over the past 20 years, including mega-quakes in New Zealand, Haiti and, most recently, Japan.

In Haiti, Miyamoto’s teams established a program to help Haitians repair buildings by teaching the masonry skills necessary to bring them up to international seismic strength standards. More than 3,000 buildings have been repaired so far. “We leave the country stronger, not only in its buildings but its knowledge base,” Miyamoto says.

Their work in Japan is just beginning.

“There is a huge difference between the quakes in Japan and Haiti,” he observes. “In Haiti, 300,000 people were killed, but 50 percent of the buildings were untouched. Whole communities still exist there. In Japan, whole towns have been wiped out, but maybe 30,000 killed."

Ironically, Miyamoto was in Tokyo, delivering a speech on earthquake engineering at Tokyo Institute of Technology, when the 9.0-magnitude quake hit on March 11.

Miyamoto credits the foundation of his research and design expertise to his studies in civil engineering at Sac State. “The program offered access to a great mixture of research engineers and practicing engineers who not only taught me about design practice, but the physics and math of how buildings behave during earthquakes. The research I did for my master’s degree is a very important part of what I do now.

“I love what I do,” Miyamoto adds. “Having safe shelter is such an important thing. We make the world a better place.”

Back to top.

Class Notes


Rodney Quinn (’53, Psychology) earned his master’s degree at Stanford University followed by a long Air Force career as a professor at the Armed Forces Staff College. After retiring he went into Maine politics and served as secretary of state for 10 years. Now retired again, he currently stays young as a columnist for several local Maine weeklies.


Rona Commins (’68 and ’83, Music) has taught San Francisco State University’s “Art, Music and Culture in Florence” summer travel study program in Italy for 23 years. A soprano, she performs in Europe as well as in Sacramento with Capitol Chamber Players.

Al Manfredi (’64, Physical Education) enjoys golf and watching a lot of basketball. He was elected to the Vallejo Hall of Fame in March.

Joseph M. Pujals (’66, Business Administration) published his first novel, Islam’s Fire, which draws on his knowledge of computer technology and how it is used for both good and evil. He is hard at work on a second book. He currently resides in Northern California.

Steve Turre (’68, Music) has been the Saturday Night Live Band trombonist since 1984 and he has won DownBeat magazine’s Best Trombonist Reader’s Poll award five times. He has released 13 albums, including Rainbow People in 2008.


Patricia Boyes (’70, English) attended law school from 1998-2002 and currently is a practicing attorney in San Jose, Calif.

Phil Cowan (’79) is known from his time as a radio personality on Y92.5’s morning show in Sacramento until 2006. He also won Emmy awards for hosting a television show called “The Answer Guys” on the Discovery Channel. Now he has moved on to acting. In January, he was in a production of “Shining City” at Sacramento’s B Street Theatre.

Randy Davis (’77, Recreation Administration) retired from the City of American Canyon after serving 11 years as the city’s parks and recreation department director. He previously served as the recreation and community services director for the City of Dixon and the recreation superintendent for the City of Delano.

Bruce Hohenhaus (’76, Business Administration) is working at Cushman & Wakefield as a senior director and recently won the honor of Top Office Sale for the Northern California Society of Industrial and Office Realtors, along with a team of five office brokers. He has also joined the Sac State Alumni Association Board of Directors.

Dave Shipp (’75, Physical Education) is Vintage High School’s head football coach. In his career he has won a Catholic Athletic League title at St. Patrick’s-Vallejo, a CIF Sac-Joaquin Section title at Justin-Siena, and a Monticello Empire League pennant with the Crushers. Overall, in 13 years as a head coach, Shipp has a 76-51-2 record.

Carl J. Temple (’77, Communication Studies) is the western region manager for AssetWorks, providing business and customer service to colleges and universities from California to British Columbia, Canada. He has more than 25 years of experience delivering information technology best practices to education and state and local governments, including the facilities operations on the Sac State campus.

Len W. Wahlert (’75, Business Administration) retired after 30 years with 3M. The last 10 years of service with 3M found him leading its aerospace business in the western United States. He is also a Vietnam veteran and currently resides in La Quinta, Calif.

Tommy Lee Woon (’77, Education) was appointed as the director of diversity and first-gen programs at Stanford University in April. In this role, he will help first-generation and low-income students successfully navigate the unfamiliar terrain of college life. He was most recently the dean of multicultural life at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn.


Jeffrey Adamski (’83, Business Administration) has been named executive vice president/senior loan officer of First Northern Bank. He will oversee the bank’s commercial, agricultural and small business lending teams. He has been with the bank since 1993.

Stephen Becker (’89, English) received his Ph.D. through a cooperative program of Trinity Theological Seminary in Newburgh, Ind., and Canterbury Christ Church University in Kent, U.K. He serves as a pastor at Greenhaven Lutheran Church in Sacramento.

Galer Britton Barnes (’89, Anthropology), an author and poet, launched her latest book Feb. 2 under the pen-name Jane Galer. Becoming Hummingbird became a bestseller in its genres on Amazon the day of launch. The book is a benefit for a school in Peru.

Julia Couzens (’86, Art) had a solo exhibition of new drawings, “All Taped Up,” at InSite in San Francisco during December. Her work was also included in the group exhibition “Hauntology” at the University Art Museum in Berkeley.

Russell (Dave) Hays (’85 and ’88, English) recently accepted a position as district ranger for the Klamath National Forest in Fort Jones, Calif.

Sharon Sander Krause (’88, Communication Studies and ’09, Counseling) is a career counselor with the Sacramento Employment Training Agency. She is also joining the Sacramento State Alumni Association Board of Directors.

Sally Longden (’88, Interior Design) has lived in England since 1988 and remarried last year. Her daughter has just graduated from York University. Her younger daughter is heading to university to study the classics. Longden is working for a chartered surveyor and hopes to re-launch her small hobby business later this year.

Rob McMillan (’82, Business Administration) is the founder of Silicon Valley Bank’s wine division, based in St. Helena, Calif. His banking career has spanned nearly 30 years, the past 20 with Silicon Valley Bank’s managing committee. Today he strives to foster growth and success in the wine business by managing a portfolio of client relationships.

Steve Melody (’87, Business Administration) is the regional vice president for planning and strategy for Anthem Blue Cross, reporting directly to Anthem’s president in California. He joined Anthem Blue Cross in 1997.

William “Bill” Mills (’81) recently accepted a position as chief compliance officer at Professional Finance Company, Inc. in Greeley, Colo.

Mike Rizzo (’89, Business Administration) is the senior vice president of commercial and emerging business banking at Five Star Bank in Sacramento. He is also joining the Sacramento State Alumni Association Board of Directors.

Eric Rockwell (’83, Music) is a writing-performing artist who wrote the music and lyrics, respectively, and collaborated on the book for “The Musical of Musicals (The Musical!),” an off-Broadway show.

Jason Saslow (’89, Criminal Justice) is the senior vice president of business development at Five Star Bank in Sacramento. He is also joining the Sacramento State Alumni Association Board of Directors.

Michael S. Tinney (’82 , Business Administration) has joined First Republic Wealth Management in Portland, Ore. as portfolio manager and managing director. He had previously served as senior vice president and investment manager for Wells Fargo, and as a portfolio manager for Investors Research Company prior to that.

Scott Wilson (’89, Geology) and wife Deborah Wilson (’88, Geology) recently moved their office to Highlands Ranch, Colo. Scott E. Wilson Consulting, Inc. provides mining geology and engineering consulting services in North and South America.

Diane Zimmerman (’83, Education) grew up in Vacaville and where her family started the Nut Tree restaurant on Highway 80. She is currently the superintendent of the Old Adobe Union School District in Petaluma and has retired as of June 30.


Jim Bolt (’91, Communication Studies) and Chris Prosio (’91, Communication Studies) recently co-planned a reunion for KEDG/KSSU, the student radio station they helped found. Bolt holds a master’s degree in business administration from Notre Dame and has built a career in marketing and international business. He is currently vice president of marketing for Fair Trade Sports. Prosio has put his degree to work in the media and entertainment industries, doing special effects projection for feature films, music videos and corporate events. He is currently a global product development manager for Barco.

Carol Britto (’98, Social Work) is currently working for Sacramento County Adult Protective Services as a social worker.

Bobby Daniels (’91, Physical Education), a 15-year veteran with the Sacramento Police Department, works as a detective at the neighborhood crimes unit that investigates burglaries and robberies. In 2002 he received a Purple Heart Award, given to Sacramento police officers who sustain serious wounds when confronting a hostile person.

Lynda Jolley (’93, Humanities) is co-owner of JAYJAY art gallery with Beth Jones. The gallery is located near the Sac State campus and often features campus artists.

Max Santiago (’95, Criminal Justice) is the deputy commissioner of the California Highway Patrol. As second-in-command, he is responsible for the day-to-day operation of the largest state law enforcement agency in the nation. He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Va., and was recently elected fourth vice president of the California chapter of the FBI National Academy Associates. He lives in Elk Grove, Calif.

Brenda K. (Thompson) Shefcheck (’90, Government/Journalism) , a senior proposal specialist, recently got married and resides in Maryland. She also enjoys raising English budgies.

Kendra York (’99, Business Administration) was recently appointed by Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels to head the Indiana Finance Authority as public finance director. She has served as general counsel and chief operating officer for the authority since September 2007.


Mary Hope Lopez Adame (’00, Nursing) was honored at the Mexican Heritage Center’s La Adelita Recognition Awards. She is an advice nurse at Kaiser Permanente’s Spanish call center and is active in the American Legion-Karl Ross Post No. 16, where her husband, Tino Adame, is commander. There, she assists in helping veterans obtain their benefits, oversees girls in a leadership program and lends her nursing services to community health fairs.

Willie Armstrong (’10, Ed.D.) was appointed by Gov. Jerry Brown as undersecretary of the State and Consumer Services Agency. He is principal advisor to the secretary on major policy, program, legislation and fiscal matters. He’s also responsible for all office functions and discharges all statutory functions of the agency’s departments.

Michael Basso (’04, Communication Studies) was admitted to the California State Bar in December.

Eugene Chan (’06, Music) performs opera throughout the world and has received many awards. He made his San Francisco Opera debut in 2007, graduated from the Merola Opera Program in 2008, and recently made his European debut in Basel, Switzerland. For the 2010-11 season, he returned to Basel to perform Yeletsky (Pique Dame) and Count Almaviva.

Tonja Edelman (’08, Social Work) recently joined the Always Best Care Senior Services team as a new franchise operations trainer. She had previously served as the director of social services at a skilled nursing facility and led the senior peer counseling program for the Mental Health Association.

Jon Godfrey (’08, Business Administration) began working for Oak Valley as a credit analyst in 2009 and was recently promoted to loan officer. His primary service areas will be Oakdale, Modesto and other Stanislaus County communities.

Cynthia Hurn (’09, Psychology) , a recent graduate of Sac State’s psychology and creative writing departments, worked with Terri Crisp to write the book No Buddy Left Behind: Bringing U.S. Troops’ Dogs and Cats Safely Home from the Combat Zone. She also contributed four non-fiction stories to Dr. Bernie Siegel’s new book A Book of Miracles: Inspiring True Stories of Healing, Gratitude, and Love, due out in October.

Julian Irvine (’01, Communication Studies) is starting his third year of active duty in the U.S. Navy as a yeoman. He is currently stationed at the Navy Information Operations Command in Maryland as an assistant to the judge advocate general.

Gregory M. Joyce (’08, Communication Studies), a Navy seaman, recently completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command in Great Lakes, Ill.

Ryan Maine (’02), part of the Diamond Bar (Calif.) High School Brahmas’ back-to-back CIF-Southern Section Divisional championship teams in 1998 and 1999, has been named head football coach after serving as offensive coordinator since 2008.

Ryan Murray (’07, Music) is currently a conductor for Music in the Mountains, musical director for the Modesto Opera, a conducting faculty member for the Bay Area Summer Opera Theater Institute, an associate professor at Sacramento State and director of vocal activities with the Vocal and Instrumental Teaching Academy.

Kirstie Pangilinan (’07, Government) graduated from law school in Florida after finishing at Sac State. However, she has found that her calling is children. She currently works with children at the Teichert Branch of the Boys and Girls Club in Sacramento.

Chris Ridley (’10, Electrical Engineering) is working for the California Water Resources Department in Sacramento as an electrical engineer.

Tim Ridley (’08, Art Studio) is working with THQ, making concept art for video games. He is also the webmaster and assistant art director for Adhesive Games, Ltd.

Ernest Roberts (’09, Criminal Justice) works as a correctional peace officer with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and lives in Sacramento with his family.

Lilián Rosas (’07, Business Administration) and Gabriel Apgar (’07, Civil Engineering) were married on April 29 in San Diego, Calif. Lili received her degree in business administration with a concentration in accountancy and Gabe’s degree is in civil engineering.

Stephanie Sauer (’05, Creative Writing) was one of the first at Sac State with a creative writing minor. She is currently finishing a book entitled The Accidental Archives of the Royal Chicano Air Force. It’s a collection of the truth and myth—often indistinguishable—surrounding the Sacramento-based artist collective that played a vital role in the Chicano civil rights movement and worked with Cesar Chavez on the United Farm Workers Union’s efforts.

Sandy Thomas (’02, Recreation Administration) is a third-generation poet and San Francisco native. Her work has been published by 24th Street Irregular Press and Rattlesnake Press and has appeared on Medusa’s Kitchen and Ophidian-One and in WTF. Her latest book is These Stones and her coming release is The Matchbook Series. She is working on Mastery of Momentum, a self-defense handbook. She is a personal trainer and the founder of Poets for Strength.

Todd Versteeg (’06, Engineering Technology) was recently appointed as the new superintendent of the Woodbridge Irrigation District in Lodi by its board members.

Mike E. Winfield (’01, English) discovered unintentionally in his speech class at Sac State that he could share his humor and entertain people. Despite a tough road, he has earned appearances on such programs as Comedy Central’s “Live at Gotham,” BET’s “Comicview,” and most recently on “The Late Show with David Letterman.”

Back to top.