Enterprise, Economics, Humanities and Social Sciences Graduates Honored at Ceremonies

College of Business and Economics and College of Humanities and Social Sciences graduates on Wednesday heard from Orange County enterprise leaders and an skilled public coverage advocate throughout Cal State Fullerton’s 2022 Commencement. These leaders additionally obtained honorary doctorates from the college to acknowledge their innovation and assist for applications which have boosted the careers of numerous CSUF college students.

College of Humanities and Social Sciences graduates leave the stadium holding up their diplomas

Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences on Wednesday honored Class of 2022 graduates throughout two ceremonies. The faculty conferred levels in sociology, American research, historical past, English, linguistics, environmental research, African American research, Asian American research, Chicana and Chicano research, prison justice, political science, public administration, liberal research, philosophy, spiritual research and girls and gender research.

At each ceremonies, graduates, school, households and buddies had been greeted by members of the Acjachemen Nation to acknowledge that the college was constructed upon Place of origin shared by the Tongva and Acjachemen peoples. Through the ceremony, Acjachemen Nation members honored their Native ancestors, elders and relations — previous, current and rising.

Dean Sheryl Fontaine greeted the graduating class, their buddies and households at each ceremonies by providing “gratitude and a present.” College had been thanked for being true trainer students. Workers had been thanked for all their efforts on behalf of scholars. Mother and father and households had been thanked for believing within the graduates, serving to in sensible methods (corresponding to offering rides, help with tuition and costs, and many others.), and believing within the promise of those graduates. The scholars and graduates had been thanked for his or her mental curiosity, compassion and kindness towards one another, and their impatience with what the world has to supply.

“My reward to the graduates is the hundreds of humanities and social sciences alumni who’re succeeding in quite a lot of fields, altering the world. Such as you, on the day they graduated, they didn’t all the time know the place life would lead them,” she mentioned. “Their success is your promise. Imprint the reminiscence of at the present time in your hearts.”

On the 9 a.m. ceremony, an honorary doctorate was offered to longtime college supporter Ambassador Gaddi Vasquez, who lately served as senior vp of presidency affairs for Edison Worldwide and Southern California Edison.

Gaddi Vasquez speaks at podium
Gaddi Vasquez

A descendant of migrant farm employees, Vasquez served from 2002-09 in such roles as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Organizations in Rome, Italy, and director of the U.S. Peace Corps. Vasquez was additionally appointed by former President George H.W. Bush to 2 federal commissions, together with the President’s Fee on White Home Fellowships. He at the moment serves on the CSU Basis Board of Governors in addition to a number of civic and neighborhood boards.

“Gaddi Vasquez will not be solely a detailed advisor however an expensive good friend, and in addition an unlimited advocate for Cal State Fullerton and for greater training,” mentioned President Fram Virjee. “He’s a champion of fairness and inclusion, equitable entry to high quality training, the primary Latinx particular person to serve on the Orange County Board of Supervisors, and a fiery advocate for all public college campuses. We’re honored to bestow this honorary doctorate of regulation, the very best of honors CSUF confers, upon Gaddi – ambassador, civic chief, justice advocate and now, Titan.

“I think about it a rare privilege to have a good time with you,” mentioned Vasquez. “You’ll go down in historical past as a bunch that persevered and triumphed over insurmountable odds. Through the previous few years, we discovered about ourselves and a fantastic deal extra about our nation. 

“Replicate on what issues in life. Grow to be champions of what you imagine in. Form a future the place high quality and variety is elevated. Construct entry and alternative and assist those that are deprived have an opportunity to beat their circumstances and succeed as properly. We have to be a nation the place respect is on the core of every part we do and say and assume.

“Our dad and mom endured challenges and skilled tough occasions, corresponding to social conflicts, struggle, inequality and far more. Be taught from them and form your individual resilience. For a lot of of you, your journey started in a faraway place…and led to the U.S. For others, it started nearer to this campus.

“I’m a descendant of a migrant employee household. I’m the kid of two dad and mom who by no means graduated highschool. Our dad and mom had been insistent that we might not repeat their journeys. We might be the primary era to interrupt the cycle of poverty. I’m additionally the primary in my household to earn a university diploma. 

“I challenged myself and by no means allowed the voice of cynicism or doubt to overwhelm me.”

Vasquez then inspired graduates to form their futures and make it their very own. And produce others alongside. He quoted Martin Luther King Jr. who mentioned, ‘Life’s most persistent and pressing query is, ‘What are you doing for others?’

“Those that graduated earlier than you might be shaping public coverage, constructing companies, growing expertise, holding our communities robust and vibrant. Collectively, we are able to work to make the world a greater place. The identical sense that received you to at the present time, will carry you into the longer term.”

He concluded with a citation by Poet Carl Sandburg: “Time is the coin of your life. It’s the solely coin you could have and solely you’ll be able to decide how will probably be spent. Watch out lest you let others spend it for you. And if you spend it, spend it correctly so that you just get probably the most in your expenditure.”

“You’re right here right this moment to have a good time the time you spent in an endeavor that may impression your lives in methods you might not be capable of see right this moment however it’ll develop into extra obvious over time.

“Dream huge. Assume huge. And do nice issues. We’re Titans!”

The faculty additionally acknowledged that the previous couple of years had been marked by loss. One such loss was the dying of pupil Michael Kruger. Kruger was a senior majoring in sociology with a 3.9 GPA.

Kruger didn’t simply take pleasure in learning sociology: He actively practiced sociology. Via his involvement with Undertaking Rebound and its John Irwin Home, he supported faculty college students who skilled incarceration throughout their lifetimes and offered help to them on their instructional journeys. As an lively member of the Well being, Tech and Society Lab, he drew on sociological principle and strategies to review neighborhood experiences of COVID-19 in Southern California and offered this analysis at scholarly conferences. He was accepted to the CSUF grasp’s diploma program in training and counseling.

Kruger believed strongly within the transformative energy of public faculty training for people, households, and (underserved) communities. His mixing of scholarship, observe and social justice is a reminder to us all that the purpose of sociology will not be merely to interpret the world, however to alter it. In overcoming his personal private struggles, Kruger reworked not solely his personal life, however these of numerous others.

Peggy Kruger, Michael’s mom, spoke about how proud Michael was to be a Titan. 

“We all know how a lot it meant to him to be a part of Cal State Fullerton and Undertaking Rebound. All through his time at CSUF, Michael shaped relationships with different college students, and he discovered mentors and counselors to information him alongside his journey. He gave his all by way of outreach, activism and work. He was joyful to have made California and Cal State Fullerton his residence. Michael may have a long-lasting impression on all who knew him. Michael’s neighborhood involvement not solely led him to the touch the lives of others: Extra importantly, it was right here at Cal State Fullerton that he lastly was capable of finding himself. The dignity of graduating right this moment summa cum laude exemplifies Michael’s private finest, and reaffirms that Titans frequently elevate the bar.”

On the faculty’s 5 p.m. ceremony, Provost and Vice President for Educational Affairs Carolyn Thomas famous how humanities and social sciences graduates now have real-life expertise for the job market, like drawback fixing, communication, teamwork, management and intercultural fluency.

“Take into account how your studying prepares you to guide,” Thomas mentioned. “Not the push-to-the-front, ‘decide me’ form of management, however the form of management that brings out the very best in these round you.”

Thomas urged graduates to not undervalue the talents they’ve discovered by way of their training. 

“There is no such thing as a larger want in society now than to take on a regular basis actions that assist us arrive at a greater future,” Thomas mentioned. “You’ve gotten every part it takes.”

Pupil audio system from the faculty included Asian American research graduate Kim Pham, Chicana and Chicano research graduate Marisela Dorado, American research graduate Michelle Okawa, historical past graduate Janae Scott, sociology graduate Sophia Briseno, girls and gender research graduate Abby Hunt, philosophy graduate Jeremy Santiago, spiritual research graduate Bronson Vazquez, liberal research graduate Alexis Labellarte, political science graduate Vivian Valenti-Flores and prison justice graduate Peter Mancilla.

Faculty of Enterprise and Economics

Dean Sridhar Sundaram and College Marshal Vivek Mande greeted greater than 2,500 new graduates and their friends at two Faculty of Enterprise and Economics ceremonies on Wednesday. Sundaram reminded graduates that their journey of lifelong studying was simply beginning.

“As you full your time right here at Cal State Fullerton, I need to remind you that that is the start of your journey of studying. Ensure you are a pupil all through your life and be a pupil of the world,” he mentioned. “Additionally, do not forget that it takes a village — your loved ones and buddies who gave you unconditional assist, the college who supported you within the classroom and outdoors the classroom, the employees who gave you a serving to hand throughout tough days, and all of the mentors who had been there in periods of uncertainty. 

“Lastly, be a superb citizen. Greater than ever, it’s important so that you can be a superb citizen of the world. Discover a objective that you just’re captivated with and be sure to give again.” 

Through the 9 a.m. ceremony, Provost and Vice President for Educational Affairs Carolyn Thomas known as graduates “a sea of drive, savvy and potential.”

“You’ll create tales that construct new habits and new experiences into individuals’s lives. You’ll take into consideration what motivates individuals to work and assist create extra significant and equitable locations to do it,” she mentioned. “You’ll assist us clear up our provide chain issues (thanks!) and be sure that our enterprise legal guidelines can result in worthwhile and simply practices. You’ll uncover, promote and shield websites of latest experiences and leisure that preserve us studying about and from one another.”

Charlie Zhang, founding father of Decide Up Stix and creator of “The Energy of One Second, From Farmer to Philanthropist,” additionally spoke to graduates.

Zhang labored within the fields in China after which as a dishwasher and fuel station attendant when he arrived in the US in 1980 with $20 in his pocket. Zhang would go on to discovered the favored restaurant chain, Decide Up Stix, which he offered in 2001 for $50 million. He would then construct two extra profitable enterprises: a beverage bottling firm that he offered in 2021 for $60 million and Zion Enterprises, an actual property growth firm. As a philanthropist, he based the nonprofit neighborhood performing arts college, OC Music and Dance, and serves on the board of administrators for Pacific Symphony.

Charlie Zhang speaks at podium
Charlie Zhang

Throughout his speech, Zhang shared a few of his life experiences with graduates, reminding them that every mistake is a chance to study one thing new or higher. He emphasised the significance of embracing failures and all the time having a constructive mindset.

“I used to be 24 once I first got here to the U.S. talking no English, however I got here right here with hopes and desires. I knew that this land was capable of give me the chance to meet my American dream,” he mentioned. “Now, it’s my flip to assist others fulfill their very own hopes and desires.”

Zhang inspired graduates to pursue their pursuits, work exhausting and by no means surrender.

“Search for the correct job and an trade that you’re captivated with. I personally recommend which you can start with a part-time job inside the restaurant discipline, because it helped and skilled me to beat many alternative adversities. No matter you do, don’t surrender. I imply it. By no means ever, ever surrender. I don’t care how exhausting it will get. Preserve going.”

Through the second ceremony at 5 p.m., CSUF President Fram Virjee offered enterprise chief Jeff Van Harte with an honorary doctorate from the college. Keynote speaker Terry Giles additionally addressed the gang of graduates and households.

“This night is about celebrating you and your achievements,” Virjee informed graduates. “You realize, I began at CSUF only a few months earlier than you probably did. So you’re the first graduation class with whom I’ve spent the complete 4 years. It seems like I’m graduating proper together with you.

“Whilst you have efficiently endured some unbelievable hardships, and truly turned them into exceptional achievements, it’s now time to take a look at the longer term — on the subsequent chapter of your life.”

Van Harte ’80 (B.A. enterprise administration-finance) serves as chief funding officer of Jackson Sq. Companions. A longtime supporter of the faculty, Van Harte helped set up the faculty’s Utilized Securities Evaluation Program and its funding administration middle, Titan Capital Administration. Van Harte has additionally supported Cal State Fullerton Athletics and Division of Student Affairs applications. He was honored as a 2012 Imaginative and prescient & Visionaries Distinguished Alumnus.

Jeff Van Harte speaks at podium
Jeff Van Harte

“Jeff Van Harte serves on quite a lot of boards, and served for greater than a decade on the Cal State Fullerton Philanthropic Board,” Virjee mentioned. “He’s on a mission to emphasise the significance of giving to public establishments corresponding to Cal State Fullerton. As such, he has donated to each faculty, athletics, Middle for Oral and Public Historical past, and lots of different facilities and applications on campus.

“Jeff is one in every of my closest advisers and an excellent good friend…and lots of others at Cal State Fullerton would most likely say the identical factor. He dedicates his time and sources to a various inhabitants, and I’m proud to honor Jeff with a doctorate of humane letters.”

As he stood on the podium, Van Harte shared some ideas with the graduating class.

“A few years in the past once I was sitting in your seat, I didn’t know what a fantastic training I used to be getting at Cal State Fullerton. After I was employed for my first job, I used to be form of the ‘runt of the litter’ with solely an undergraduate diploma. Most of the others had grasp’s levels, however I met after which exceeded a lot of them in a few 12 months. There’s no approach I may have carried out that with out the good training I obtained at Cal State Fullerton. Now I’ve a doctorate and that’s fairly cool!

“I need to discuss Titan DNA. What number of of you might be first era? You realize, we don’t come from legacy. We aren’t born with silver spoons in our mouths. We would have needed to scratch round a bit of bit to put our basis and construct it up. Lots of you had been hustling to get to class on time after which head to work to assist pay in your training. I labored at Disney for 4 summers. That have is what makes us robust.

“I so admire this college and what it’s carried out for me. It’s Titan time. It’s time for fulfillment. Once you get out on the earth, you’re going to make it occur!”

Giles ’70 (B.A. speech communication), an alumnus who went on to develop into a profitable legal professional, businessman, philanthropist and supporter of the college. He informed graduates to not concern failure, because it usually turns into how one learns probably the most priceless life classes.

“Proper now, proper right here, you’re the luckiest individuals on the planet,” mentioned Giles. “You’re a faculty graduate and every of you could have earlier than you an empty slate, an empty chalkboard and beginning now you get to put in writing your life’s story on that board.” 

He provided three tricks to the brand new graduates:

  • Be daring. “In case you are being daring, there can be failures. However so long as you might be prepared to learn to decide your self up and put the failure in your rearview mirror, your desires can and can be a actuality.” 
  • Be versatile. “Your finest concept right this moment is barely your present finest concept. Be versatile and be ready to attempt to be at your finest in each state of affairs.”
  • Be constructive. “I notice that we live in dynamic occasions and that the previous few years have offered us all with unprecedented challenges. Your presence right here right this moment at this commencement ceremony stands as proof of the issues which you can accomplish in life. Take what you could have discovered at this positive establishment and proceed to construct on it as you attempt to achieve your targets and to serve humanity. Cynicism and self-doubt shouldn’t have any place in your being.”

Representing the Class of 2022, two pupil audio system shared private tales of resilience: Vivian Yenson, who’s incomes a bachelor’s diploma in enterprise administration, and Rita Boyle, who’s incomes a grasp’s diploma in data expertise.