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Capital University News, California State University, Sacramento

May 20, 2005

New President’s Award among
highlights at largest-ever commencement

Photo: Sacramento State professor Pete Nowlen
Brandon Jackson with son

In the largest spring commencement in Sacramento State history, more than 4,200 students will be eligible to cross the stage at seven commencement ceremonies this Friday and Saturday, May 20 and 21 on campus, including the first recipient of the new President’s Award.

Other graduates include an American Indian tribal chair and a Hmong schoolteacher whose master’s project is helping other teachers understand Hmong students.

  • Brandon Jackson has been selected to receive the inaugural President’s Award as the year’s outstanding graduate from among seven students honored with the Dean’s Award earlier in the month. Jackson enrolled at Sacramento State as a single teenage father with no clear academic goal. Encouraged by a classmate and his freshman remedial math instructor, Jackson chose engineering as his major and soon became an honors student, serving as a tutor on campus and as a mentor to middle- and high-school students. He has been hired by Agilent Technologies in Roseville as one of four engineers nationwide to take part in its new fast-track executive training program. Jackson will receive his award during the College of Engineering and Computer Science ceremony at 5:30 p.m., Friday, May 20 at the Outdoor Theatre.
  • Matthew Franklin, tribal chair of the Ione Band of Miwok Indians, will receive a degree in liberal studies, graduating in the area of his tribal homelands. In addition to his three-year term as tribal chair, Franklin runs the Indian education program for the Elk Grove County School District. He plans to use his degree, and eventually a teaching credential, to promote education among American Indians. During the ceremony he will be wearing necklaces given to him by tribal elders. His younger sister is also graduating from the University this spring, walking in the College of Arts and Letters ceremony. Franklin will graduate at the College of Social Sciences and Interdisciplinary Studies ceremony at 7 p.m., Friday, May 20 at Hornet Stadium.
  • Kevin Xinog graduates with a master’s degree in education and an administrative credential. A fourth- and fifth-grade teacher at Cedar Lane Elementary School in Marysville, Xinog is the first member of his immediate and extended Hmong family to attend college. He is already getting use out of his master’s project—a guidebook to help teachers at his school better understand their Hmong students, who constitute one-third of the school’s student population. The book features a brief history of the Hmong people and their complex tribal structure, a pronunciation guide to Hmong names, and the correlation between the Hmong alphabet and English language sounds. Xinog plans to develop workshops for teachers on how to use the book. Xinog will graduate at the College of Education ceremony at 6 p.m., Saturday, May 21 at Hornet Stadium.

The schedule for this weekend’s ceremonies is:

Friday, May 20

• College of Arts and Letters, 12:30 p.m., Hornet Stadium
• College of Engineering and Computer Science, 5:30 p.m., Outdoor Theatre
• College of Social Sciences and Interdisciplinary Studies, 7 p.m., Hornet Stadium

Saturday, May 21
• College of Health and Human Services, 8 a.m., Hornet Stadium
• College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, 10 a.m., Outdoor Theatre
• College of Business Administration, noon, Hornet Stadium
• College of Education, 6 p.m., Hornet Stadium

Additional information is available by calling (916) 278-4724 or visiting Media assistance is available by calling the Sacramento State public affairs office at (916) 278-6156.


California State University, Sacramento • Public Affairs
6000 J Street • Sacramento, CA 95819-6026 • (916) 278-6156 •
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California State University, Sacramento • Public Affairs
6000 J Street • Sacramento, CA 95819-6026 • (916) 278-6156 •