CSUN Commencement 2017: Honors Convocation

CSUN Commencement 2017: Honors Convocation


CALIFORNIA STATE CALIFORNIA
STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE CALIFORNIA
STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE
UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE.
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE.>>HELLO. MY NAME IS LINDA
BOWEN, PROFESSOR AND CHAIR FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF JOURNALISM
WITH THE MIKE CURB COLLEGE OF ARTS, MEDIA, AND COMMUNICATION.
>>AND MY NAME IS DR. LOUIS RUBINO, PROFESSOR AND CHAIR FOR
THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH SCIENCES FROM THE COLLEGE OF
HEALTH AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT. >>AND AS THE NARRATORS FOR THE
EVENT THIS EVENING, IT IS OUR PLEASURE TO WELCOME YOU TO THE
35TH ANNUAL HONORS CONVOCATION. LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, PLEASE
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, PLEASE RISE AND REMAIN STANDING WHILE
THE CSUN JAZZ “A” BAND UNDER THE DIRECTION OF PROFESSOR MATT
HARRIS PLAYS THE NATIONAL ANTHEM, ACCOMPANIED BY VOCALIST
KRISTIE JOGA. OH, SAY CAN YOU
OH, SAY CAN YOU SEE, BY THE DAWN’S EARLY LIGHT.
WHAT SO PROUDLY WE HAILED AT THE TWILIGHT’S LAST GLEAMING?
WHOSE BROAD STRIPES AND BRIGHT STARS THROUGH THE PERILOUS
FIGHT. O’ER THE RAMPARTS WE WATCHED,
WERE SO GALLANTLY STREAMING. AND THE ROCKETS’ RED GLARE, THE
BOMBS BURSTING IN AIR, GAVE PROOF
THROUGH THE NIGHT THAT OUR FLAG WAS STILL THERE.
OH, SAY DOES THAT STAR-SPANGLED BANNER YET WAVE, O’ER THE LAND OF THE FREE AND THE HOME OF THE BRAVE? THANK YOU, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN.
YOU MAY NOW BE THANK YOU, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN.
YOU MAY NOW BE SEATED. THE PLATFORM PARTY IS HERE TO HONOR
THESE REMARKABLE STUDENTS. PLEASE JOIN ME IN ACKNOWLEDGING OUR DISTINGUISHED
PLATFORM PARTY. DISTINGUISHED PLATFORM PARTY
MEMBERS, PLEASE RISE AS YOU ARE INTRODUCED AND REMAIN STANDING UNTIL THE FULL
PLATFORMER HAS BEEN ACKNOWLEDGED. I ALSO ASK THAT
THE AUDIENCE HOLD ITS APPLAUSE UNTIL THE ENTIRE PLATFORM PARTY
AND SPECIAL GUESTS HAVE BEEN INTRODUCED.
ON THE SECOND ROW FROM RIGHT TO LEFT, DR. ELIZABETH ADAMS,
ASSOCIATE VICE PRESIDENT FOR STUDENT SUCCESS.
DR. MICHAEL SPAGNA, DEAN FOR THE MICHAEL D. EISNER COLLEGE OF
EDUCATION. DR. ELIZABETH SAY, DEAN FOR THE
COLLEGE OF HUMANITIES. DR. DANIEL HOSKEN, INTERIM DEAN FOR THE MIKE CURB
COLLEGE OF ARTS, MEDIA, AND COMMUNICATION. DR. KENNETH LORD, DEAN FOR THE
DAVID NAZARIAN COLLEGE OF BUSINESS AND ECONOMICS. DR. FARRELL WEBB, DEAN FOR THE
COLLEGE OF HEALTH AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT. THE COLLEGE OF SOCIAL AND
BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES. DR. S.K.
RAMESH, DEAN FOR THE COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING AND COMPUTER
SCIENCE. DR. JERRY STINNER, DEAN FOR THE
COLLEGE OF SCIENCE AND MATHEMATICS. DR. MARK STOVER, DEAN FOR THE
UNIVERSITY LIBRARY AND TODAY’S MACE BEARER.
ON THE FIRST ROW FROM RIGHT TO LEFT, JEFF NOBLITT, ASSOCIATE VICE PRESIDENT FOR MARKETING AND
COMMUNICATIONS. DR. ROBERT GUNSALUS, VICE PRESIDENT FOR UNIVERSITY
ADVANCEMENT AND PRESIDENT OF THE CSUN FOUNDATION.
HILARY BAKER, VICE PRESIDENT FOR INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY AND
CHIEF INFORMATION OFFICER. DR. ADAM SWENSON, FACULTY
PRESIDENT. DR. YI LI, PROVOST AND VICE
PRESIDENT FOR ACADEMIC AFFAIRS. DR. DIANNE HARRISON, UNIVERSITY
PRESIDENT. JULIO CESAR ORTIZ, TODAY’S
KEYNOTE SPEAKER. DR. WILLIAM WATKINS, VICE
PRESIDENT FOR STUDENT AFFAIRS AND DEAN OF STUDENTS.
DR. CRIST KHACHIKIAN, ASSOCIATE VICE PRESIDENT FOR RESEARCH AND
GRADUATE STUDIES. CARLOS FUENTES, CSUN ALUMNI
PRESIDENT. LET US PLEASE RECOGNIZE THIS
YEAR’S HONORS CONVOCATION PLATFORM PARTY WITH OUR APPLAUSE.
ALSO IN ATTENDANCE ARE MEMBERS OF OUR DISTINGUISHED FACULTY, STAFF, AND ADMINISTRATORS WHOSE
LEADERSHIP, KNOWLEDGE, AND GUIDANCE HAVE PLAYED A MAJOR
ROLE IN PREPARING AND SUPPORTING THE STUDENTS WE HONOR TODAY.
WILL ALL THE FACULTY STAFF AND ADMINISTRATORS PLEASE RISE?
PLEASE JOIN ME IN RECOGNIZING THESE OUTSTANDING MEMBERS OF THE UNIVERSITY RISE?PLEASE JOIN ME IN
RECOGNIZING THESE OUTSTANDING MEMBERS OF THE UNIVERSITY
COMMUNITY. IT IS NOW MY GREAT PLEASURE TO INTRODUCE OUR
UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT, DR. DIANNE HARRISON.
GOOD EVENING, EVERYONE. WE HAVE BEEN BLESSED THIS EVENING WITH
SOME NICE WEATHER, SO LET’S ENJOY NOT ONLY THIS MOMENT OF ACHIEVEMENT FOR OUR
STUDENTS, AND THEIR FAMILIES AND FRIENDS, AND THE FACT THAT WE
HAVE BEAUTIFUL WEATHER. THANK YOU. ON BEHALF OF THE
UNIVERSITY, I’M PLEASED TO WELCOME YOU TO THE CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY
NORTHRIDGE 2017 HONORS CONVOCATION. THIS CEREMONY MARKS
THE START OF CSUN’S COMMENCEMENT CELEBRATIONS, WHICH
BEGIN NEXT WEEK. ONE OF MY GREATEST JOYS AND PRIVILEGES AS
CSUN PRESIDENT IS THE OPPORTUNITY TO MEET THE MANY
GIFTED MEN AND WOMEN WHO MAKE UP OUR UNIVERSITY STUDENT BODY AND
OUR GRADUATES. THE COLLECTIVE ACHIEVEMENTS OF THE STUDENTS WE
HONOR TONIGHT SYMBOLIZE CSUN’S GOAL TO HELP STUDENTS FULFILL
THEIR GREAT POTENTIAL FOR ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE AND TO
BECOME LEADERS IN THEIR PROFESSIONS AND IN THEIR
COMMUNITIES. ON BEHALF OF THE WHOLE CSUN COMMUNITY, OUR
FACULTY, STAFF, YOUR FELLOW STUDENTS, AND OUR ALUMNI,
CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL OF YOU WHO ARE BEING HONORED THIS
EVENING. WE ARE VERY PROUD TO JOIN WITH YOU AND WITH YOUR
FAMILIES AND FRIENDS TO RECOGNIZE YOU, AND WE ARE
GRATEFUL FOR THE OPPORTUNITY TO CULTIVATE YOUR UNIQUE TALENTS
AND GIFTS. WE ALSO INVITE YOU TO THE GRAND RECEPTION AT THE
MATADOR SQUARE AND UNIVERSITY STUDENT PLAZA IMMEDIATELY
FOLLOWING THIS CELEBRATION TO CONTINUE CELEBRATING. THERE WILL
BE LIVE MUSIC FOR YOU, REFRESHMENTS, AND PHOTO
OPPORTUNITIES THAT YOU REALLY WON’T WANT TO MISS, SO I
ENCOURAGE YOU TO ATTEND WITH YOUR FAMILIES. IT IS NOW MY
GREAT PLEASURE AND PRIVILEGE TO INTRODUCE TONIGHT’S KEYNOTE
SPEAKER. OUR SPEAKER IS A CSUN ALUMNUS, AND HIS STORY SEEMS
ESPECIALLY INSPIRING AND RELEVANT AT THIS MOMENT IN
HISTORY, WHEN THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF IMMIGRANTS TO OUR COUNTRY AND
THE IMMIGRANT EXPERIENCE HAVE COME UNDER SCRUTINY AND
DISCUSSION. TONIGHT’S SPEAKER IS AN EXAMPLE
OF WHAT COULD BE ACHIEVED WITH HARD WORK, PERSONAL DRIVE, AND A
CSUN EDUCATION. AS AN AWARD-WINNING TELEVISION
REPORTER FOR KMEX34, UNIVISION LOS ANGELES,
JULIO CESAR ORTIZ IS A WELL-KNOWN AND RESPECTED
JOURNALIST IN THE TELEVISION BROADCAST COMMUNITY. AS AN
UNDOCUMENTED HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT, HE RECOGNIZED THE
IMPORTANCE OF A GOOD EDUCATION AND DOING WELL IN SCHOOL, AND HE
HAS SAID HE KNEW HE HAD TO WORK TWICE AS HARD BECAUSE OF THE
EXPECTATIONS OF OTHERS AND LANGUAGE BARRIERS. HE
TRANSFERRED TO CSUN AFTER ATTENDING SANTA BARBARA CITY
COLLEGE, WHERE HE EARNED TWO ASSOCIATE’S DEGREE IN
COMMUNICATIONS AND IN LIBERAL ARTS. AT CSUN, HE FLOURISHED.
HE MADE HIS MARK AS A LEADER AND A TRAILBLAZER, FOUNDING THE
FIRST-EVER 30-MINUTE WEEKLY SPANISH NEWSCAST IN THE
CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY SYSTEM. AFTER GRADUATION, HE
FOCUSED ON BECOMING A TELEVISION BROADCAST JOURNALIST, SERVING
THE SPANISH-SPEAKING COMMUNITY. HE HAS BEEN A TELEVISION
REPORTER WITH THE UNIVISION TELEVISION GROUP FOR THE PAST 16
YEARS, WHICH INCLUDES FIVE AND A HALF YEARS AS A REPORTER FOR
UNIVISION IN ARIZONA, WHERE HE REPORTED FROM THE BORDER BEFORE
MOVING TO KMEX34, UNIVISION LOS ANGELES.
HIS NEWS STORIES AND HIS INVOLVEMENT WITH THE IMMIGRANT
COMMUNITY HAVE BEEN RECOGNIZED AT THE LOCAL, STATE, AND
NATIONAL LEVEL. HE HAS WON 19 EMMIES FOR HIS WORK OUT OF 38
NOMINATIONS. AND FOR TWO CONSECUTIVE YEARS HE RECEIVED
THE EDWARD R.MURROW REGIONAL AWARD FOR BEST WRITER, A
GROUNDBREAKING ACHIEVEMENT FOR A SPANISH LANGUAGE REPORTER.
HE WAS THE FIRST MEXICAN IMMIGRANT JOURNALIST TO RECEIVE
TWO CONSECUTIVE ASSOCIATED PRESS AWARDS FOR WRITER OF THE YEAR
IN THE WESTERN UNITED STATES, AND HIS STORIES HAVE TAKEN HIM
FROM LOS ANGELES TO PHOENIX. THE TOWNS ON THE U.S.-MEXICO
BORDER, AND INTO MEXICO TO REPORT ON THE IMPACT OF
IMMIGRATION ON FAMILIES AND COMMUNITIES IN THAT COUNTRY.
JULIO CESAR’S WORK AND REPORTING SHOWS THAT HE REMAINS CONNECTED
TO HIS ROOTS AND IS COMMITTED TO GIVING BACK. SINCE 2013, HE
HAS BEEN A LECTURER WHERE HE HAS TAUGHT
COURSES ON BROADCAST AND TELEVISION REPORTING.
SERVING AS A MENTOR FOR A NEW GENERATION OF SOCIALLY AWARE
JOURNALISTS. IN ADDITION, INSPIRED BY THE SOCIAL AND
ECONOMIC CHALLENGES FACED BY IMMIGRANT COMMUNITIES, HE
RECEIVED A MASTER’S DEGREE FOR MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERAPY
FOCUSING ON SOCIAL DISORDERS AS A RESULT OF ACCULTURATION WITHIN
THE SPANISH-AMERICAN COMMUNITY. THAT HIGHLIGHT MENTAL HEALTH TO
CONNECT THE HISPANIC COMMUNITY TO MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES.
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, PLEASE JOIN ME IN WELCOMING MR. JULIO CESAR ORTIZ.
THANK CESAR ORTIZ. THANK YOU, PRESIDENT, FACULTY,
DEAR FELLOW MATADORS. THERE IS NO BETTER JUDGE THAN TIME. TO
PLACE A VALUE AND IMPACT ON OUR ACTIONS. FOR WHAT WE DO TODAY
DEFINES OUR LEGACY OF TOMORROW. AND TODAY, WHICH IS THE
BEGINNING OF THE REST OF OUR LIVES AND THE REST OF YOUR
LIVES, YOUR FIRST STEP ON THIS PATH WE CALL LIFE, IT IS A STEP
THAT LEAVES A FOOTPRINT OF HONOR. SO I CONGRATULATE EACH OF
YOU. HONORS NOT JUST IN THE ACADEMIC
ACHIEVEMENTS THAT WE ARE ACKNOWLEDGING TODAY, BUT HONOR
FOUND IN THE SACRIFICES, STRUGGLES, CHALLENGES, AND
COMMITMENTS YOU WENT THROUGH TO STAND BEFORE US TODAY AND
CELEBRATE YOUR HONORS CONVOCATION. REGARDLESS OF YOUR
BACKGROUND, YOUR ECONOMIC STATUS, CULTURE, GENDER, AGE, OR
CREED, YOU ARE HERE TODAY BECAUSE IN YOUR VEINS RUN RIVERS
OF COMMITMENT AND THIRST FOR ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE. EACH OF YOU
HAD TO FIND A WILL BIGGER THAN YOU, STRENGTH BIGGER THAN YOU,
TO HOLD ON SOMETIMES TO THAT DIMMING TORCH DURING WINDY AND
DEFIANT MOMENTS. BUT LET THERE BE NO DOUBT THAT BESIDES YOUR
INTELLECT AND ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT, YOU ARE HERE TODAY
TO HONOR THOSE WHO NEVER STOPPED WALKING BESIDE YOU, REGARDLESS
OF HOW BUMPY OR UNPREDICTABLE THE ROAD BEFORE YOU WAS. BECAUSE
HONOR IS NOT JUST ABOUT RECEIVING IT. BUT IT IS ALSO
SOMETHING THAT YOU SHARE.
TO ALL THE SINGLE MOTHERS OUT THERE, YOUR PRESENCE HERE HONORS
THAT CHILD OR CHILDREN WHO WONDER WHY DOES MY MOM SEEM
SLEEPY AND TIRED ALL THE TIME? WHY DOES.
SHE HAVE SO MANY BOOKS ON THE KITCHEN TABLE? TODAY YOU HONOR
THE GRANDMOTHER OR GRANDFATHER WHO ALLOWED YOU TO STUDY THE
EXTRA HOUR IN THE LIBRARY. YOU HAVE EXPOSED YOUR FAMILY TO A
HERITAGE OF EXCELLENCE. TO ALL HANDICAPPED STUDENTS, YOUR
PRESENCE HERE HONORS THOSE INDIVIDUALS WHO BECAME PART OF
YOUR LIVES EVER SINCE YOU ARRIVED TO THIS CAMPUS, AND
THEIR GENUINE CONCERN, CARE, AND COMMITMENT, NOT TO THEIR GOALS,
BUT TO YOURS. THEY LEVELED THE LEARNING FIELD SO THAT YOUR
ACADEMIC EXPERIENCE WAS AS RICH AND GRATIFYING AS THE NEXT
STUDENT’S. EVERY STUDENT THAT STEPS ON THE SOIL OF THIS CAMPUS
RECEIVES A HERITAGE OF EXCELLENCE.
STUDENTS WHO ALREADY HAVE A FAMILY WHO CAME BACK TO CSUN TO
FINISH THEIR BACHELOR’S DEGREE OR GRADUATE DEGREE, YOUR
PRESENCE HERE TODAY HONORS THE TIME YOU WERE ABSENT FROM THAT
LITTLE LEAGUE BASEBALL GAME OR ABSENT FROM A FAMILY FIGURING OR ABSENT FROM MISSING THAT MOMENT
THAT YOUR CHILDREN EXPERIENCED BUT YOU DIDN’T BECAUSE YOU WERE
FOCUSED ON SUCCEEDING IN SCHOOL AND COLLEGE. YOUR PRESENCE
HONORS YOUR SPOUSE OR PARTNER WHO HELD THE FAMILY TOGETHER
WHILE YOU WERE DREAMING TO BECOME A MATADOR.
THEY ARE NOW PART OF THAT HERITAGE OF EXCELLENCE.
IN THE CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY SYSTEM, THERE ARE
MORE STUDENTS WITHOUT IMMIGRATION STATUS RECEIVING A
DEGREE THIS YEAR AT CSUN THAN IN ANY OTHER CSU CAMPUS.
MEXICAN, KOREAN, SALVADORIAN, HON HONDURAN, GUATEMALAN,
VENEZUELAN, TURKISH, YOUR PRESENCE HERE HONORS THE
SACRIFICE AND EFFORTS OF YOUR PARENTS’ JOURNEY SO THAT THEIR
IMPOSSIBILITIES BECAME YOUR POSSIBILITIES. TO ALL THE
DREAMERS HERE TODAY, TO ALL THE DACA IMMIGRANTS, TODAY YOU HONOR
THE VICTORY OVER THE UNCERTAINTY, THE SOCIAL
CHALLENGES THAT HAVE HELD YOUR HAND WHILE YOU ARE TRYING TO
BECOME A GREAT STUDENT. BEING THE YOUNGEST OF 11 CHILDREN FROM
AN IMMIGRANT MEXICAN FAMILY AND THE ONLY ONE WITH INTEREST TO
GO TO COLLEGE, MY MOTHER MADE SURE TO CLEAN ONE OR TWO EXTRA
HOUSES PER WEEK. AND MY FATHER MADE SURE TO PICK
FIVE OR TEN EXTRA BOXES OF STRAWBERRIES TO MAKE SURE I
COULD BE HERE WITH YOU TODAY.
SO I STAND HERE BEFORE YOU TODAY TO HONOR EVERY PARENT, ALIVE OR
DEAD, PARENTS THAT TAUGHT US RESILIENCY, PERSEVERANCE, AND
THAT FED OUR HUNGER TO CONQUER IN AND EVERY OF OUR GOALS,
REGARDLESS OF WHAT STOOD BETWEEN US AND THOSE DREAMS.
THEY DIDN’T KNOW IT, BUT THROUGH THEIR ACTIONS, THEIR GIFTS TO
US WAS A HERITAGE OF EXCELLENCE. ON A CLEAR, SUNNY DAY, NO
MATTER WHERE YOU STAND IN THE SAN FERNANDO VALLEY, IF YOU LOOK
AROUND AS FAR AS YOUR EYES WILL ALLOW YOU, YOU WILL FIND
YOURSELVES SURROUNDED BY MOUNTAINS. WE ARE IN THE VALLEY.
MOUNTAINS EVERYWHERE. THE SANTA SUSANNA MOUNTAINS TO
THE NORTHWEST, THE HILLS TO THE NORTHWEST, THE SANTA MONICA
MOUNTAINS AND THE HILLS TO THE SOUTH, THE VERDUGO MOUNTAINS TO
THE EAST, AND THE SAN GABRIEL MOUNTAINS TO THE NORTHEAST. BUT
YEAR AFTER YEAR, STUDENTS WHO GRADUATE, LIKE ME, FROM CAL
STATE NORTHRIDGE, THEY ARE NOT INTIMIDATED TO CONQUER WHATEVER
IS BEYOND THOSE MOUNTAINS. BECAUSE OUR BRAVERY, OUR VALOR
DOES NOT QUIVER UNDER CHALLENGES WAITING FOR US ON THE NORTH,
SOUTH, EAST, WEST. WE HAVE CONQUERED ALL DIRECTIONS BECAUSE
WE HAVE LEARNED THAT IN THIS SCHOOL OUR GREATEST STRENGTH
COMES FROM AN INVISIBLE DIRECTION, WITHIN.
AND WITHIN US LIVES EXCELLENCE. YOUR HISTORY,
THE HISTORY OF THIS CAMPUS IS PROOF OF IT. WHEN ANYBODY ASKS
YOU, SO WHAT UNIVERSITY DID YOU GO TO? WHERE DID YOU GET YOUR
COLLEGE DEGREE? YOU TELL THEM THAT YOU COME FROM A UNIVERSITY
FAMILY THAT ROSE FROM CRUMBLING BUILDINGS AFTER AN EARTHQUAKE.
THAT YOU COME FROM A UNIVERSITY FAMILY THAT IF
GIVEN THE CHANCE, THE SEEDS CAN GROW
THROUGH CONCRETE. YOU COME FROM A UNIVERSITY FAMILY THAT
EMBRACES DIVERSITY AND JUSTICE, A UNIVERSITY WHERE EVERY STUDENT
IN THAT FAMILY WAS NO BETTER THAN THE OTHER, THAT ONLY THEIR
TALENTS MADE THEM DIFFERENT. YOU TELL THEM THAT YOU COME FROM A
UNIVERSITY FAMILY WITH RIVERS IN THEIR VEINS. YOU TELL THEM THAT
YOU HAVE GONE BEYOND THOSE MOUNTAINS, REGARDLESS OF THE
CHALLENGES, AND THAT YOU WILL RETURN TO THAT SAME FAMILY
BECAUSE YOU CANNOT FORGET WHO TAUGHT YOU NOTHING LESS THAN TO
STRIVE FOR A HERITAGE OF EXCELLENCE. BUT MOST IMPORTANT,
YOUR ACTIONS SHOW THE WORLD THAT YOU COME FROM A UNIVERSITY FAMILY THAT ALLOWS TIME TO BE
THE JUDGE OF YOUR ACTIONS. AND LET ME REASSURE YOU, TIME WILL
BOW HIS HEAD WITH RESPECT BEFORE YOU IN YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS,
JUST LIKE A FIGHTING BULL WILL WITH ALL ITS MIGHT IN RESPECT
BOW HIS HEAD WITH RESPECT BECAUSE BEFORE HIM STANDS A GREAT MATADOR.
THAT, MY FELLOW STUDENTS, IS ACHIEVED ONLY THROUGH THE THIRST
OF HERITAGE, OF EXCELLENCE. TODAY YOU WILL RECEIVE IT, TAKE
IT, YOU HAVE EARNED IT, IT IS YOURS. I’M HONORED TO CALL YOU
BROTHERS AND SISTERS OF THIS UNIVERSITY. MAY GOD BLESS YOU.
VIVA LOS MATADORES.
JULIO CESAR, MATADORES. JULIO CESAR, THANK YOU FOR YOUR
INSPIRING WORDS AND YOUR INSPIRATION TO OUR STUDENTS AND
TO ALL OF US, FRANKLY, HERE THIS EVENING. I HOPE THAT YOU WILL
ACCEPT THIS MEMENTO FROM CSUN TO REMIND YOU OF THIS BEAUTIFUL
EVENING AT HONORS CONVOCATION FOR 2017.
THANK YOU SO MUCH. THIS2017.
THANK YOU SO MUCH. THIS MARKS THE 35TH YEAR DURING
WHICH WE HAVE ASSEMBLED TO HONOR CSUN’S HERITAGE OF EXCELLENCE
AS REFLECTED THROUGH THE ACCOMPLISHMENTS OF OUR STUDENTS.
OF THE APPROXIMATELY 11,000 STUDENTS GRADUATING THIS YEAR,
ABOUT 2,000 STUDENTS RECEIVED AN INVITATION TO THIS SPECIAL
HONORS CONVOCATION. IN RECOGNITION OF THEIR SUPERIOR
SCHOLASTIC AND PERSONAL ACHIEVEMENTS.
OF THESE, SIX ARE DISTINGUISHED FURTHER BY EARNING SPECIAL
AWARDS. THIS EVENING WE WILL RECOGNIZE
ONE OUTSTANDING GRADUATE STUDENT, FOUR OUTSTANDING
GRADUATING SENIORS, AND THE WOLFSON SCHOLAR. THESE AWARDS
HAVE BEEN SPONSORED THROUGH THE CSUN FOUNDATION, THE ALUMNI
ASSOCIATION, AND THE PRIVATE DONATIONS. EACH RECIPIENT WILL
RECEIVE A CASH AWARD OF
$1,000. THE OF
$1,000. THE OUTSTANDING STUDENT WILL NOW
BE RECOGNIZED. THIS AWARD IS PRESENTED TO A GRADUATE STUDENT
WHO HAS DEMONSTRATED ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE AND PRODUCED A
HIGH-QUALITY THESIS PROJECT. THIS YEAR’S OUTSTANDING GRADUATE
AWARD, SPONSORED BY THE NATHAN O.FREEDMAN MEMORIAL FUND, IS PRESENTED TOO. FREEDMAN MEMORIAL FUND, IS
PRESENTED TO MARIA AKOPYAN. MARIA HAS A KEEN INTEREST IN THE CHALLENGES
FACING OUR LIFE ON EARTH, WHICH HAS FUELED HER INTEREST AND
DESIRE TO BECOME A RESEARCH BIOLOGIST TO HELP SHAPE
SOLUTIONS FOR ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE AND CLIMATE CHALLENGES.
AS ONE PROFESSOR PRONOUNCED, I AM SURE THAT WE ARE SEEING THE
EMERGENCE OF A LEADER IN OUR FIELD.
MARIA HAS HELD NUMEROUS ROLES ON CAMPUS. SHE IS A FOUNDING
MEMBER OF THE GRADUATE STUDENT LEADERSHIP COUNCIL, AND ALSO
PARTICIPANTS IN GIRLS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY CLUB, AN
AFTER-SCHOOL ENRICHMENT PROGRAM DESIGNED TO EXPOSE EIGHTH GRADE
GIRLS TO CAREERS IN THE SCIENCE AND MATH FIELDS. SHE IS A
TEACHING ASSISTANT IN THE BIOLOGY DEPARTMENT AND HAS BEEN
ACTIVE IN GRADUATE RESEARCH WHILE AT CSUN.
MARIA HAS EARNED A 4.0 GPA WHILE PURSUING HER MASTER’S DEGREE IN
BIOLOGY AND CREDITS HER REMARKABLE SUCCESS TO THE
SUPPORT AND GUIDANCE SHE HAS RECEIVED FROM CSUN FACULTY.
MARIA HAS BEEN INVITED TO PRESENT AT THE SOUTHWESTERN
HERPETOLOGIST SOCIETY MEETING AND HAS A MANUSCRIPT CURRENTLY
IN REVISION EXPLORING THE MALE AND FEMALE COURTSHIP SIGNALS IN
RED-EYED TREE FROGS. MARIA HAS BEEN ACCEPTED INTO THE
DOCTORAL PROGRAM IN THE DEPARTMENT OF ECOLOGY AND
EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY AT CORNELL UNIVERSITY. HER PASSION
TO BOTH RESEARCH AND TEACH HAS SHAPED HER CAREER GOAL OF
CONTINUING TO WORK IN THE FIELD OF HIGHER EDUCATION.
SHE HOPES HER PASSION WILL CREATE A RIPPLE EFFECT OF
EDUCATING INDIVIDUALS AND EMPHASIZING THE SIGNIFICANCE OF
BIOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE THAT IS CRITICAL TO OUR LIVES AND TO OUR
PLANET. ONCE AGAIN, LADIES AND
GENTLEMEN, MARIA AKOPYAN. SENIOR AWARDS ARE PRESENTED TO
FOUR STUDENTS WHO HAVE DEMONSTRATED ACADEMIC
EXCELLENCE, MADE SIGNIFICANT CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE CAMPUS AND
COMMUNITY, AND HAVE DEMONSTRATED EXCEPTIONAL ACHIEVEMENTS OR
OVERCOME EXTRAORDINARY LIFE CIRCUMSTANCES. SELECTION OF JUST
FOUR STUDENTS FROM THE MANY APPLICANTS FOR THIS AWARD WAS
EXTREMELY DIFFICULT. BEFORE ANNOUNCING THIS YEAR’S
OUTSTANDING GRADUATING SENIORS, LET US ACKNOWLEDGE THE OTHER
STUDENT FINALISTS FOR THIS AWARD. FINALISTS, PLEASE STAND
AS I READ YOUR NAME.
JOVEEN GREWAL. HEDIEH HAKAKIAN FROM PSYCHOLOGY HONORS.
SHIR TOLEDANO, NUTRITION AND DIETETICS.
AND JOSHUA FORBES, CTVA WITH EMPHASIS IN FILM.
PLEASE JOIN ME IN APPLAUDING THE ACCOMPLISHMENTS FOR THESE
FINALISTS FOR THE OUTSTANDING GRADUATING SENIOR AWARD. AWARD.
THE FIRST OUTSTANDING GRADUATE SENIOR AWARD SPONSORED BY THE
CSUN FOUNDATION IS PRESENTED TO BRAULIO DIAZ. BRAULIO IS A
FIRST-GENERATION COLLEGE STUDENT RECEIVING HIS BACHELORS OF
SCIENCE DEGREE IN COMPUTER ENGINEERING AND DESCRIBES
HIMSELF AS A PROUD MATADOR. BRAULIO BECAME INVOLVED AT CSUN
DURING HIS FRESHMAN YEAR. AS A UNIVERSITY AMBASSADOR, HE
GAVE TOURS OF THE UNIVERSITY IN BOTH ENGLISH AND SPANISH, WHICH
PROVIDED HIM THE PERFECT OPPORTUNITY TO EXPRESS HIS LOVE
FOR THE CAMPUS. HE WAS SELECTED TO SERVE AS THE STUDENT HOUSING
RESIDENT ASSISTANT FOR THREE YEARS, AND THEN PROMOTED IN HIS
FOURTH YEAR TO SERVE AS A COMMUNITY CENTER MANAGER.
BRAULIO WAS NOMINATED FOR RESIDENT ASSISTANT OF THE YEAR
TWO YEARS IN A ROW BY THE CSUN HOUSING STAFF. AS HIS NOMINATOR
WROTE, BRAULIO IS AN UN AFRAID DREAMER, AND USES HIS STORY TO
MOTIVATE AND EMPOWER HIS PEERS AND HIS COMMUNITY.
BRAULIO WAS ELECTED BY HIS PEERS TO REPRESENT THE COLLEGE OF
ENGINEERING AND COMPUTER SCIENCE AS A SENATOR WITH THE
ASSOCIATED STUDENTS, THE OFFICIAL SEAT OF STUDENT
GOVERNANCE FOR OUR CAMPUS. BRAULIO ALSO REPRESENTED CSUN AT
THE HISPANIC ASSOCIATION OF COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES
NATIONAL CONFERENCE IN DENVER, COLORADO. AS ONE NOMINATOR
SHARED, BRAULIO HAS BEEN A DYNAMIC LEADER AT CSUN. IN EACH
ROLE, HE HAS BROUGHT CONSISTENCY, A TREMENDOUS WORK
ETHIC, EXEMPLARY CHARACTER, AND MEMORABLE ENERGY.
BRAULIO HAS WORKED ON A DYNAMIC SENIOR PROJECT WITH PROFESSOR
MEHLER DEVELOPING AN AUTONOMOUS UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE. HIS
DREAM IS TO WORK ON PROJECTS RELATED TO SPACECRAFT AND THE
ADVANCEMENT OF HUMANITY. AS THE ELDEST OF HIS SIBLINGS, HE TRIES
TO SERVE AS A POSITIVE EXAMPLE AND HAS DEMONSTRATED THROUGH
HARD WORK, DEDICATION, AND DETERMINATION THAT ANYTHING IS
POSSIBLE. BRAVO, BRAULIO. ONCE A MATADOR, ALWAYS A MATADOR!
MATADOR, ALWAYS A MATADOR! THE NEXT OUTSTANDING GRADUATING
SENIOR AWARD ALSO SPONSORED BY THE CSUN FOUNDATION IS PRESENTED
TO KIMBERLY MADHWANI.
KIMBERLY WAS THE RECIPIENT OF A CSUN PRESIDENTIAL SCHOLARSHIP
AND IS GRADUATING WITH A DEGREE IN BIOCHEMISTRY.
PROFESSOR JHEEM MEDH SAID THAT KIMBERLY PERSONIFIES THE IDEAL
CSUN STUDENT, A HARDWORKING, INTELLIGENT, AND CONFIDENT
INDIVIDUAL WITH PERSEVERANCE AND A GREAT PASSION FOR LEARNING
AND COMMUNITY SERVICE. SHE WILL MAKE CSUN SHINE WHEREVER SHE
GOES. HER RESEARCH HAS NOT ONLY BEEN
PUBLISHED, BUT ALSO AWARDED. IN THE SUMMER OF 2015, SHE WAS
SELECTED TO BE A LEADERSHIP ALLIANCE HOWARD HUGHES MEDICAL
INSTITUTE SCHOLAR, WHICH SPONSORED HER RESEARCH AT THE
UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI. IN 2016 SHE WAS SELECTED AS AN AMGEN
SCHOLAR AND CONDUCTED RESEARCH AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA,
SAN FRANCISCO. SHE HAS PRESENTED HER RESEARCH AT THE
AMERICAN SOCIETY OF BIOCHEMISTRY AND MOLECULAR BIOLOGY AND AT
THE SOCIETY FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF CHICANOS, HISPANICS, AND
NATIVE-AMERICANS IN SCIENCE. KIMBERLY BELIEVES IN PAYING IT
FORWARD. SHE REESTABLISHED THE CHEMISTRY AND BIOCHEMISTRY CLUB
AT CSUN. AS PRESIDENT, SHE WORKED WITH LOCAL ELEMENTARY,
MIDDLE, AND HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS TO EDUCATE, EXCITE, AND
ENCOURAGE THEIR PURSUIT OF SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY,
ENGINEERING, AND MATHEMATICS, BETTER KNOWN AS STEM, REGARDLESS
OF THEIR BACKGROUND AND/OR SOCIOECONOMIC STATUS.
SHE SERVED IN A LEADERSHIP POSITION FOR THE CSUN WOMEN AND
SCIENCE CLUB AND REPRESENTED THE STUDENTS FROM HER COLLEGE AS A
SENATOR WITH THE ASSOCIATED STUDENTS.
WITH ABUNDANT OPPORTUNITIES AND THE INCREASINGLY DIVERSE ENVIRONMENT THAT CSUN OFFERED,
KIMBERLY SAID SHE WAS ABLE TO FIND HER NICHE AND FLOURISH AS
AN INDIVIDUAL AND AS A SCIENTIST. TO THAT END, SHE WILL
BE ETERNALLY GRATEFUL TO CSUN. KIMBERLY PLANS TO GET HER
DOCTORATE IN NEUROSCIENCE GENETICS AND HAS ALREADY BEEN
ACCEPTED INTO TWO OUTSTANDING PH.D. PROGRAMS, PROVIDING HER
WITH FIVE YEARS OF FUNDED SUPPORT. SHE HAS DECIDED TO ATTEND THE UNIVERSITY OF
WISCONSIN, MADISON, IN THE FALL. GENTLEMEN, KIMBERLY MADHWANI. THE NEXT OUTSTANDING GRADUATE
SENIOR AWARD SPONSORED BY THE KAREN, LEON, AND RITA GOLDSTEIN
SAULTER MEMORIAL FUND IS PRESENTED TO SUNSHINE WILLIAMS.
SUNSHINE WILLIAMS STRIVES FOR EXCELLENCE, GRADUATING WITH A
DEGREE IN CREATIVE WRITING AND HAVING EARNED AN A IN EVERY
COURSE SHE HAS TAKEN AT CSUN. PROFESSOR HIGGS WROTE, SUNSHINE
IS THE STUDENT THAT YOU HOPE TO SEE ENROLLED IN YOUR CLASS
BECAUSE NOT ONLY WILL SHE RAISE THE BAR FOR EXCELLENCE
INDIVIDUALLY, SHE ALSO MAKES HER CLASSMATES STRONGER TOO. SHE IS
ENGAGED, SERIOUS, THOUGHTFUL, CREATIVE, CRITICAL, CURRIOUS,
PASSIONATE, AND IN ALL WAYS EXCEPTIONAL.
PROFESSOR POUSSON SAID THAT IN NEARLY TWO DECADES OF TEACHING,
I HAVE MET EXCEEDINGLY FEW STUDENTS WITH THE DRIVE, ENERGY,
AND PASSION OF SUNNY WILLIAMS. SUNNY COMMITS TO EACH CLASS AND
TO EACH OF HER SHORT STORIES IN THE SAME MANNER IN WHICH SHE
COMMITS TO LIFE, FULLY AND FIERCELY. OUTSIDE OF CLASS,
SUNNY IMPRESSES IN EQUAL MEASURE. AS PRESIDENT OF THE
NORTHRIDGE CREATIVE WRITING CIRCLE, SHE DEVELOPED SUCCESSFUL
PROGRAMS, INCREASED THE MEMBERSHIP, AND REHABILITATED
THE LEADERSHIP BOARD. SHE SERVED AS THE LEAD EDITOR FOR THE
SCHOLAR JOURNAL CAPTURED, IS AN ASSOCIATED STUDENTS SENATOR FOR
THE COLLEGE OF HUMANITIES, AND MAINTAINED MEMBERSHIPS IN
SEVERAL ACADEMIC HONORS SOCIETIES. HER ESSAYS AND
STORIES ARE AWARD-WINNING, INCLUDING ONE ABOUT A HARRY POTTER CHARACTER ENTITLED
DRACO MALFOY IS REALLY IS SWEETHEART.
MEANWHILE, SUNSHINE’S PATH TO CSUN WASN’T ALWAYS EASY. HER
NAME EVOKES HER EXTREME POSITIVE SPIRIT. SUNSHINE SAYS THE
AMAZING CSUN CAMPUS AND BEING SURROUNDED BY INCREDIBLE
PROFESSORS ASK BRIGHT YOUTH HELPED HER DISCOVER HER TRUE
LIFE PATH. SUNSHINE HAS BEEN ACCEPTED INTO GRADUATE SCHOOL
AND ASPIRES TO GET HER PH.D. IN ENGLISH AND RETURN TO CSUN TO
BE A PROFESSOR. SHE WANTS TO MAKE THE KIND OF DIFFERENCE IN
THE LIVES OF STUDENTS THAT HER PROFESSORS HAVE MADE IN HER.
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, SUNSHINE WILLIAMS. WILLIAMS.
THE FINAL STUDENT RECOGNIZED AS AN OUTSTANDING GRADUATING SENIOR
ALSO SPONSORED BY THE KAREN, LEON, AND RITA GOLDSTEIN SAULTER
MEMORIAL FUND, IS PRESENTED TO ROXXETTE ZEPEDA.
ROXXETTE ZEPEDA DESCRIBES HERSELF AS AN EDUCATED MEXICAN
WOMAN WHO WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER CSUN.
ROXXETTE ENTERED CSUN AS A FRESHMAN THROUGH THE EDUCATIONAL
OPPORTUNITY PROGRAM FOR HIGH-POTENTIAL STUDENTS.
SHE MAINTAINED A VERY HIGH GRADE POINT AVERAGE, AN IMPRESSIVE
RECORD OF SERVICE TO HER CAMPUS AND COMMUNITY, AND HAS PRESENTED
HER RESEARCH AT INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCES.
NEXT WEEK, SHE IS RECEIVING HER DEGREE IN PUBLIC HEALTH FROM THE
COLLEGE OF HEALTH AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT.
SHE IS WELL ON HER WAY TO ACCOMPLISHING HER FUTURE GOALS
OF BECOMING A NURSE AND A MEDICAL FIELD RESEARCHER.
HER FACULTY MENTOR WROTE, I STRONGLY BELIEVE THAT ROXXETTE’S
WORK ETHIC, STRONG SENSE OF COMPASSION FOR OTHERS, AND
STRONG INTELLECT WILL MAKE HER AN AMAZING NURSE-RESEARCHER WHO
WILL INTRODUCE NEW RESEARCH QUESTIONS AND METHODS INTO THE
FIELD OF ADVOCACY FOR INFANTS IN NEONATAL UNITS.
SHE HAS THE SKILLS, DEDICATION, AND KNOW-HOW TO BECOME A
SIGNIFICANT RESEARCHER. HER CONTRIBUTIONS BACK TO THE
COMMUNITY ARE AN INSPIRATION TO US ALL.
CURRENTLY ROXXETTE IS VOLUNTEERING AT NORTHRIDGE
HOSPITAL AND MATTER. SHE HAS ALREADY COMPLETED OVER 100
VOLUNTEER HOURS AT CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL LOS ANGELES WORKING
WITH CRITICALLY ILL INFANTS AND OVER 300 VOLUNTEER HOURS AT
GLENDALE ADVENTIST MEDICAL CENTER.
ON CAMPUS SHE SERVED AS A PEER MENTOR TO OVER 100 STUDENTS IN
THE EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITY PROGRAM AND ALSO AS THE
PRESIDENT OF THE BUILD PODER RESEARCH PROGRAM. SHE ALSO
COORDINATED THE RAZA YOUTH CONFERENCE THAT BROUGHT HIGH
SCHOOL STUDENTS FROM UNDERREPRESENTED COMMUNITIES AND
THEIR PARENTS TO CSUN FOR A DAY. ROXXETTE IS THE FIRST IN
HER FAMILY TO GRADUATE FROM HIGH SCHOOL, AND NOW COLLEGE.
SHE HAS BEEN ACCEPTED INTO THE GRADUATE MS-PH.D. PROGRAM IN
NURSING AT UCLA AND WILL BEGIN THERE IN THE FALL, BUT SAYS SHE
WILL ALWAYS LOVE AND REMEMBER CSUN.
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, ROXXETTE ZEPEDA. THE FINAL AWARD
PRESENTED THIS EVENING WILL BE TO THE UNIVERSITY’S WOLFSON
SCHOLAR, WHICH IS THE HIGHEST ACADEMIC AWARD BESTOWED UPON AN
UNDERGRADUATE AT CSUN. THE WOLFSON SCHOLAR AWARD IS
PRESENTED EACH YEAR IN THE MEMORY OF THE UNIVERSITY’S FIRST
VICE PRESIDENT, DR. LEO WOLFSON, AND GIVEN TO THE SENIOR
SELECTED AS THE MOST OUTSTANDING SCHOLAR IN THE
GRADUATING CLASS. NOT ONLY MUST THE STUDENT HAVE AN EXCEPTIONAL
ACADEMIC RECORD, BUT THEY MUST HAVE MADE SIGNIFICANT
CONTRIBUTIONS TO CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY NORTHRIDGE OR
TO THE COMMUNITY THROUGH COCURRICULAR AND EXTRACURRICULAR
ACTIVITIES. BEFORE ANNOUNCING THIS YEAR’S
WOLFSON SCHOLAR, I WANTED TO ACKNOWLEDGE THE OTHER FINALISTS
FOR THE AWARD. THESE STUDENTS ARE OUTSTANDING SCHOLARS WHO
HAVE CONTRIBUTED EXTENSIVELY TO THE COMMUNITIES IN WHICH THEY
SERVE, WORK, AND STUDY. WILL EACH FINALIST, IF PRESENT,
PLEASE STAND AS I READ YOUR NAME FROM THE MIKE CURB COLLEGE OF ARTS, MEDIA AND
COMMUNICATION, HANNAH POMERANS. FROM THE DAVID NAZARIAN COLLEGE OF BUSINESS AND
ECONOMICS, JOVEEN GREWAL. FROM THE COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING AND COMPUTER
SCIENCE, ERIC FIGUEROA. FROM THE COLLEGE OF HUMANITIES, CELINA
FERNANDEZ-AYALA. FROM THE COLLEGE OF HEALTH AND
HUMAN DEVELOPMENT, ALEXIS MAGLALANG. FROM THE COLLEGE OF SCIENCE AND MATHEMATICS, TANIA
GHAZARIAN. PLEASE JOIN ME IN RECOGNIZING
THE ACCOMPLISHMENTS OF THESE WOLFSON SCHOLAR FINALISTS.
THIS YEAR THE RECIPIENT OF THE UNIVERSITY’S WOLFSON SCHOLAR
AWARD IS ANGELINA FINAU FROM THE COLLEGE OF SOCIAL AND
BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES.
PROUD TO BE THE FIRST IN HER FAMILY TO GRADUATE FROM COLLEGE,
ANGELINA FINAU SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETED HER DEGREE IN
POLITICAL SCIENCE IN FOUR YEARS WITH AN IMPRESSIVE 3.9 GPA. THIS
EXTRAORDINARY STUDENT’S LONG LIST OF IMPRESSIVE ACADEMIC AND
PROFESSIONAL ACHIEVEMENTS IS A TESTAMENT TO HER DEDICATION AND
PASSION FOR LEARNING AND SERVING. IN ADDITION TO WORKING
IN CSUN’S OFFICE OF STUDENT SUCCESS AND INNOVATIONS
INNOVATIONS, ANGELINA WAS BUSY EXCELLING ACADEMICALLY. IN FACT,
SHE MADE THE DEAN’S LIST EVERY SEMESTER, IS A UNIVERSITY
SCHOLAR, AND SERVED AS A STUDENT REPRESENTATIVE FOR THE
MILLENNIUM MOMENTUM FOUNDATION LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT
INSTITUTE. AS A STUDENT RESEARCHER AT THE CSUN WATER
GRANT, SHE HELPED TO FORMULATE A PLAN TO STUDY WATER
CONSERVATION HABITS OF LOS ANGELES RENTERS.
FACULTY DESCRIBE ANGELINA’S PASSION TO WORK IN SERVICE TO
TRADITIONALLY UNDERSERVED GROUPS. SHE BELIEVES THAT ALL
BIG CHANGES START WITH SOMETHING SMALL. PERHAPS THIS INSPIRED
HER TO CREATE AN AWARD-WINNING SHORT FILM ABOUT THE STIGMA
SURROUNDING MENTAL ILLNESS. ANGELINA TAKES PRIDE SERVING HER
COMMUNITY BY ORGANIZING EVENTS AND MEETINGS TO INFORM YOUNG
PEOPLE ABOUT THE BENEFITS AND IMPORTANCE OF ATTENDING COLLEGE.
SHE ALSO VOLUNTEERS AS A MENTOR AT JAMES MONROE HIGH SCHOOL AND
AT NEW HORIZONS, A NON-PROFIT DEDICATED TO SERVING AND
ADVOCATING FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS. IN ANGELINA’S
WORDS, “SOMEONE LIKE ME, WHOSE FAMILY MADE ITS WAY IN THIS
COUNTRY BY HARD LABOR, WAS NOT ONLY ABLE TO ATTEND COLLEGE, BUT
ALSO FOUND A COMMUNITY OF FRIENDS, FACULTY, AND STAFF WHO
ACTUALLY BELIEVE IN ME.” ONCE MORE, MAY I PRESENT TO YOU
OUR 2017 CSUN WOLFSON SCHOLAR, ANGELINA FINAU. HONORED HERE THIS EVENING
REPRESENT THE FINEST MEMBERS OF THIS YEAR’S GRADUATING CLASS.
THEY HAVE EXCELLED AND DISTINGUISHED
THEMSELVES DURING THEIR TENURE HERE AT CSUN AND ARE BEING
RECOGNIZED THIS EVENING FOR THEIR SCHOLASTIC AND PERSONAL
ACHIEVEMENTS. STUDENTS DISTINGUISHED FOR SCHOLASTIC
ACHIEVEMENT ARE GRADUATE STUDENTS WITH A CUMULATIVE GRADE
POINT AVERAGE OF 3.885 OR BETTER, AND GRADUATING SENIORS
WITH A CUMULATIVE GRADE POINT AVERAGE OF 3.5 OR BETTER THROUGH
FALL 2016. STUDENTS RECOGNIZED FOR THEIR
PERSONAL ACHIEVEMENT HAVE MAINTAINED AT LEAST A 3.0
CUMULATIVE GRADE POINT AVERAGE WHILE DEMONSTRATING EXCELLENCE
OF AN ARTISTIC, CREATIVE, OR ATHLETIC NATURE, OR THEY HAVE
DISPLAYED OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP SKILLS AND/OR COMPLETED
EXTENSIVE COMMUNITY SERVICE WORK. AND NOW AT THIS 35TH
ANNUAL HONORS CONVOCATION, WE CELEBRATE OUR HERITAGE OF
EXCELLENCE IN YOU, MEMBERS OF THE GRADUATING CLASS OF 2017,
WHO HAVE EARNED HONORS RECOGNITION. IN ACKNOWLEDGMENT
OF YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS, THE UNIVERSITY WILL NOW INVEST YOU
WITH A COMMEMORATIVE MEDALLION TO SYMBOLIZE YOUR COMMITMENT TO
HIGH ACADEMIC SUCCESS AND COCURRICULAR ACHIEVEMENT.
WE ASK THAT YOU FOLLOW THE DIRECTION OF THE CEREMONY
MARSHALS AND STAFF AS YOU MAKE YOUR WAY UP TO THE STAGE, WHERE
OUR COLLEGE DEANS AND ASSOCIATE DEANS WILL CONGRATULATE AND
INVEST YOU WITH YOUR HONORS MEDALLION.
OUT OF RESPECT FOR ALL THE HONOREES, STUDENTS MUST RETURN
TO THEIR SEAT AFTER RECEIVING THE MEDALLION AND REMAIN SEATED
UNTIL ALL RECIPIENTS HAVE BEEN HONORED. FOLLOWING THE
CONCLUSION OF THIS CEREMONY, WE WILL ALL CELEBRATE TOGETHER AT
THE GRAND RECEPTION BEING HELD IN YOUR HONOR AT THE MATADOR
SQUARE AND UNIVERSITY STUDENT UNION PLAZA.
ON THE WEST SIDE OF THE STAGE WE WILL BEGIN BY INVESTING
STUDENTS FROM THE COLLEGE OF HUMANITIES, AND ON THE EAST SIDE
STUDENTS FROM THE COLLEGE OF SCIENCE AND MATHEMATICS.
AND AT THE CENTER STUDENTS FROM THE COLLEGE OF HEALTH AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT.
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, ONCE MORE, PRESIDENT HARRISON.
OKAY. I WANT TO THANK ALL OF YOU WHO HAVE REMAINED WITH US.
BUT I ALSO WANT TO RECOGNIZE ALL OF OUR STUDENTS AND GRADUATES
WHO WE HAVE HONORED THIS EVENING WITH OUR LAST ROUND OF
APPLAUSE. SO CONGRATULATIONS TO YOU ALL.
I WANT TO THANK ALL OF OUR UNIVERSITY DEPARTMENTS AND
PROGRAMS, THE ALUMNI ASSOCIATION, THE FOUNDATION, OUR
MEMORIAL FUNDS, EMPLOYERS, AND OTHER FRIENDS OF THE UNIVERSITY
WHO WERE THE SOURCE OF THE STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT FUNDS THAT
WE HAVE PRESENTED. WE THANK THEM. I ALSO WANT TO
GIVE A SPECIAL SHOUT OUT TO THE PARENTS, SPOUSES, PARTNERS,
SIGNIFICANT OTHERS, AND FAMILIES WHO HAVE SUPPORTED OUR STUDENTS
IN ATTAINING THIS EXCELLENCE. SO LET US THANK OUR FAMILIES.
THANK YOU. THANK OUR OFFICE OF STUDENT
INVOLVEMENT AND DEVELOPMENT, MATT HARRIS AND THE CSUN JAZZ
“A” BAND WHO HAVE HELPED PUT ON THIS AMAZING CEREMONY.
AND NOW I ASK ALL OF YOU WHO ARE STILL REMAINING TO PLEASE
STAND, OUR STUDENTS, FACULTY, STAFF AND ALUMNUS OF CSUN TO
RISE FOR OUR UNIVERSITY ALMA MATER, HAIL TO THE MATADORS,
UNDER THE MUSICAL DIRECTION OF PROFESSOR MATT HARRIS, AND THE
CSUN JAZZ “A” BAND AND PERFORMED BY KRISTIE JOGA.
YOU’LL FIND THE WORDS IN THE BACK OF THE PROGRAM, AND WE
ENCOURAGE YOU TO SING ALONG. AFTER THE ALMA MATER, THE STAFF
WILL LEAD THOSE OF YOU WHO ARE REMAINING TO THE GRAND
RECEPTION, JUST TO MY LEFT, TO YOUR RIGHT, AT THE MATADOR
STATUE AT THE UNIVERSITY STUDENT UNION. THANK YOU ALL FOR
CELEBRATING THIS IMPORTANT OCCASION WITH US. AND I WANT TO
ENCOURAGE ALL OF OUR GRADUATING STUDENTS TO WEAR YOUR MEDALLIONS
PROUDLY AT THE COMMENCEMENT CEREMONIES OVER THE NEXT WEEK.
MAY YOU HAVE A WONDERFUL AND SAFE EVENING. HAIL TO ALL THE MATADORS AND TO
OUR SCHOOL SO DEAR. AS WE MOVE ALONG THE ROAD OF
LIFE, LET US KEEP FROM DOUBT OR FEAR.
FOR THE KNOWLEDGE WHICH WE FIND HERE, FOR ALL WHO URGE US ON.
THE SPIRIT OF THE RED AND WHITE WILL BRIGHTEN EVERY DAWN.
WHERE THE SUN IS SHINING. AND WHERE TRUTH LEAVES
AN OPEN DOOR.

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