Volume 10 Issue 2
In this issue:
- We’re #1!
- $2.4 Million Brings Marriott Name to SDSU
- Shaping Up
- Teaming Up
- Spring Campus Tours Filling Up
- March is SDSU Month
- Take a Chance on Romance
- “A Night with the Aztecs”
- All About Boomers
- Three Women Wednesday
- SDSU Near You: SDSU President, Dean to Visit L.A.
- L.A.-Area Alums Invited to Theater Event
Aztec Cheer Squad Captures National Title
SDSU Cheer co-captain Jessica Masterson (center, kneeling) and squad react to announcement that they are national champions. (UCA/Varsity Photo)
Jessica Masterson just had a feeling.
As the finish order was being announced in the All Girl Division at the 2009 UCA College Cheerleading and Dance Team National Championships January 17 in Orlando, the SDSU Cheer co-captain knew her squad had nailed every stunt in a virtually flawless routine. Still…
“They got closer and closer to first place and when they were at the top three is probably when I started getting worried,” the 21-year-old senior recalls. “We were just holding hands tighter and when they said, ‘In first place, San Diego State!’ we went crazy, jumping up and down and crying.”
“WE WENT KNOWING WE HAD A CHANCE”
The reaction is understandable. The Aztecs had outperformed 12 other squads in the finals at Disney's Wide World of Sports complex, including perennial powerhouse Morehead State University and the defending champions from the University of Memphis.
“We knew they would be tough to beat,” says Masterson, a liberal studies major from Orange County who began gymnastics at the age of six and has been a cheerleader since seventh grade. “But we went knowing we had a chance to win nationals.”
It was a chance made more difficult by a costly oversight. An omission in the video required for an automatic bye to the finals meant the squad had to pay its own way to Orlando and was forced to battle through semifinal competition for a shot at the championship.
“We usually get a paid bid, but this is the one year we didn’t and we were shocked,” says Masterson. Undaunted, the Aztecs launched a fundraising drive, including a cheer clinic, and managed to pull together enough cash for the trip.
SDSU Cheer squad performs winning routine at UCA College Cheerleading and Dance Team National Championships in Orlando. (UCA/Varsity Photo)
They worked hard on their performance, too. Last semester, in addition to classes, jobs, and game commitments, the squad attended two-hour practices three times each week. For ten days over the semester break before the Orlando trip, Masterson says the cheerleaders practiced every day for a solid three hours.
“We’re hard working, but we know when to have fun,” says the four-year squad veteran. “We’re also dedicated and never miss practices.”
Cheerleading head coach Jen Kwappenberg cites that dedication as the main reason for her squad’s success. “To have performed so well is a credit to their talent and commitment year round to represent San Diego State,” says Kwappenberg, who put together the winning cheer combination.
In the competition, squads were judged on such criteria as crowd leading ability, practicality of skills, and overall cheer impression. Masterson, who hopes to become an elementary or junior high school teacher, says the cheerleaders’ talents are only part of the equation.
“We have really good coaches,” she says, “and I think that’s a big part of why we succeeded this year.”
Going into the competition, Masterson knew what it would take for the Aztecs to win. In her freshman year, the SDSU squad finished second in the national championships. She was unfazed by unexpected developments this time around.
Aztecs execute a flawless cheer to win top spot in the 2009 UCA College Cheerleading and Dance Team National Championships in Orlando. (UCA/Varsity Photo)
“We had five people quit three months before nationals,” the co-captain recalls. “We brought two more girls on who had been on the team before and ended up not trying out again.”
Currently, the squad has 23 members. Only 20 take the mat for competition. According to Masterson, those spots may become more coveted as SDSU develops its reputation for acrobatics along with academics.
“It’s already started happening. People are coming to State just to cheer,” she observes. “We’re one of the only places that’s a really good school that also has a really good cheer team. I would say we’re by far the best team on the west coast.”
SOMETHING TO PROVE
Masterson’s assessment is tough to dispute given her squad’s recent performance, especially considering the obstacles the Aztecs overcame on their way to the national title.
“I think this year we had gone through so much rough stuff that we just wanted to prove to everyone that we could win nationals,” she says, “and this was the first time we ever won nationals, so it’s really exciting.”
And reason for Aztecs everywhere to cheer.
View the Aztecs’ national championship performance in Orlando. Enter San Diego State University in the search box.
The UCA College Cheerleading Team Championship featuring the Aztec Cheer Squad will be nationally televised Feb. 22 on ESPN 2 beginning at 1 p.m. EST.
College Cheerleading National Championships
2009 All Girl Division I Results
1. San Diego State University
2. Morehead State University
3. University of Memphis
4. Indiana University
5. Texas State University
6. University of South Florida
7. University of Georgia
8. Mississippi State University
University of Minnesota - Minneapolis
Central Michigan University
University of Nevada - Las Vegas
Western Kentucky University
$2.4 Million Brings Marriott Name to SDSU
Foundation’s Largest Gift Ever to Hospitality School or Program in Western U.S.
Marriott Foundation check presentation: (from left) Student Center for Professional Development Director Brian Blake, Hospitality and Tourism Management Program Director Carl Winston, Marriott International Chairman and C.E.O. Bill Marriott, College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts Dean Joyce M. Gattas, SDSU President Stephen L. Weber.
San Diego State University’s School of Hospitality and Tourism Management (HTM) has received a $2.4 million donation from The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation. The gift is the foundation’s largest ever to a hospitality school or program in the western United States.
Bill Marriott, chairman and C.E.O. of Marriott International, presented SDSU with the check at a January 28 naming ceremony on campus. The donation endows the school’s Student Center for Professional Development, which has been renamed The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation Student Center for Professional Development.
“Marriott is synonymous with high ethical standards and premier leadership,” said Carl Winston, director of the School of HTM. “It’s also recognized for commitment to workplace diversity, mentorship of individuals and creating opportunities for those interested in joining the hospitality industry. These are values we share and the values we strive to develop in our students.”
The Student Center for Professional Development helps HTM students find internships required to earn their degree and assists students in finding part-time, summer positions and full-time employment after graduation. More than 100 HTM students have completed internships with Marriott, and there’s a strong correlation between internship and job placement, said Brian Blake, director of the Student Center for Professional Development. The HTM program boasts a 99 percent placement rate.
This new endowment is the seventh gift of $1 million or more received by HTM since its inception seven years ago.
Give to SDSU at giveonline.sdsu.edu.
Alumni Center Structure Fills Out
Parma Payne Goodall Alumni Center construction site on 55th Street.
Scaffolding surrounds much of the outside structure of the new Parma Payne Goodall Alumni Center rising on the northwest corner of 55th Street and Hardy Avenue. The shapes of expansive windows and broad balconies are now becoming visible as workers complete the building’s exterior framing.
“What we’re trying to achieve right now is to create a water-tight envelope,” says construction manager Steve Nelson (’96) of Midwest General, Inc., in describing the next steps taking place with the project. “They frame it, then they’ll sheathe it, and then they cover that with paper and plaster over that.”
As the last of the interior and exterior metal framing is placed, various rooms and offices take shape. Workers scramble over scaffolding welding outside walls awaiting enclosure.
“It’s going along real well,” Nelson says, “but there’s a lot that goes into keeping the water out. They’ll be putting the roof on soon.”
Construction for the new $11 million home of the SDSU Alumni Association began following last year’s demolition of the former Football Operations Center. Completion is scheduled by the end of this year.
View the latest images of the Parma Payne Goodall Alumni Center site at alumnicenter.sdsu.edu.
There is still time for you to permanently put your name in the new building by sponsoring a rotunda paver. Affordable payment plans are available to help you leave your lasting impression on campus through Project Pave the Way. Visit www.sdsualumni.org/pavers or contact Kelley Suminski at (619) 594-3406.
Additional naming opportunities within the Parma Payne Goodall Alumni Center are:
Alumni Center Ballroom $1,000,000
Alumni Center Rotunda Columns $250,000
Alumni Center Donor Wall $10,000
To build your legacy into the new alumni center with a naming gift, contact SDSU Alumni Association Executive Director Jim Herrick at (619) 594-0213. All naming gifts and pavers are 100% tax deductible and will also support the SDSU Alumni Student Scholarship Fund.
New Program Benefits Students, Non-profits
SDSU senior Trevor Alfstad hopes to someday start his own business. The 22-year-old computer science major now has a better idea of just what that might involve thanks to a new endeavor recently launched by SDSU’s Entrepreneurial Management Center (EMC).
Computer sicence major Trevor Alfstad interned in WebCompass pilot project.
EMC’s WebCompass is a paid, semester-long internship for undergraduate seniors from SDSU’s business, graphic/web design, and computer science programs. Students from each program form teams to complete web-based projects for local non-profit organizations.
The idea, according to EMC Programs Director Bernhard Schroeder, is to provide students with “real world” experience while giving a boost to community organizations.
“Not only is the internship rewarding for the students and the organizations involved,” says Schroeder, “but the benefits of the program reach across the SDSU campus and into the local community for non-profit organizations.”
A TEAM ENVIRONMENT
One such organization is San Diego’s La Cuna, a non-profit foster family agency that was formed to address the needs of Latino children in foster care. The agency needed a redesigned Web site and served as a pilot project for WebCompass in the fall 2008 semester.
“The group that helped us was amazing,” marvels La Cuna Executive Director Rachel Humphreys, who describes the students’ work as “excellent.” “They actually were very knowledgeable and they were interdisciplinary, so they had very different skills that came together and we hustled.”
The project was completed in six weeks. Alfstad’s role was “coding” or “the syntactical language and manipulation of a computer language to get what you want on a Web server,” as he describes it.
“There were deadlines that had to me met,” Alfstad explains. “Not that that’s any different than in school, but these were a little stricter and it was more of a team environment, so it was ‘real world’ in that sense, which was nice.”
Although he had dealt with clients before, the 22-year-old Alfstad says he learned a great deal from the La Cuna experience, which was one of two WebCompass projects the EMC undertook last fall with support from Qualcomm. A second student team worked with a local charter school to redesign its Web site.
SDSU student Trevor Alfstad helped redesign a Website for La Cuna, a non-profit foster family agency.
HOW ALUMNI CAN HELP
As WebCompass moves forward, the EMC is looking for more non-profits to participate in the program. That’s where SDSU alumni can help.
“If there are any Aztec alums whose non-profit organizations would benefit from our program, we certainly encourage them to contact us,” says Schroeder. “It’s a win/win for them and for students here at SDSU.”
It’s a win for students like Alfstad, who enjoyed his internship so much he continues to work with the EMC.
“Great people are running the program and no matter what, you’re going to learn something,” he says. “It’s an amazing way (for students) to get experience!”
To get involved with WebCompass as a host organization, please contact Clare McCarty at email@example.com or call (619) 594- 0462.
Spring Campus Tours Filling Up
Sign Up for a Lifetime Member 360 Tour Now
Why is SDSU ranked as the number one small research university in the nation? Find out for yourself with a behind-the-scenes look at campus programs by scheduling a 360 Tour today. SDSU Alumni Association lifetime members are eligible for the popular campus tours as a benefit of membership, but sign up now because open seats are filling up fast!
360 Tour participants visit SDSU’s Immersive Visualization Center.
Two-hour 360 Tours are reserved on a first-come, first-served basis. Each tour begins and ends in the President’s Conference Room in Manchester Hall and includes stops for an inside look at some of SDSU’s most highly regarded programs. Space is limited. Lifetime members of the SDSU Alumni Association may make reservations by contacting Jerry Tomaszewicz at (619) 594-2651 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reserve your space now. Available dates and times for the spring season of 360 Tours are:
February 20 7:45 a.m. – 2 seats
March 6 8:15 a.m. – 2 seats
March 27 9:00 a.m. – 1 seat
April 10 7:45 a.m. – 3 seats
April 24 8:15 a.m. – 4 seats
March is SDSU Month
Are You an Aztec for Life?
SDSU Month 2009 approaches, and this year’s theme is “Aztec for Life.” It’s a powerful phrase sure to represent something completely unique to each member of the Aztec family. Whether you’re an alum, faculty/staff member, student, or friend of the university, you’re invited to explain why you embody the spirit of SDSU and what “Aztec for Life” means to you. Please take a few minutes to share your story by e-mailing email@example.com. Also, be sure to visit www.sdsumonth.com later this month to see if your story is featured.
Explore SDSU 2008
There’s never been a better time to reconnect with your Aztec family. Join us in March by attending one or more of the following SDSU Month events:
- Musical of Musicals, March 1, 2 p.m., Experimental Theatre: SDSU’s School of Theatre, Television, and Film presents one simple story that becomes five hilarious musicals, each written in the distinctive style of one of the masters, from Rodgers & Hammerstein to Andrew Lloyd Webber. (Musical of Musicals also runs throughout February, see schedule at theatre.sdsu.edu/streaming/html/musical.htm)
- Theatre of the World, March 13 & 14, SDSU Campus: A wonderful family event, the fun-filled cultural celebration features plays, music and dance representing a range of Middle Eastern cultures.
- Explore SDSU: Open House 2009, March 21, 9 a.m.- 2 p.m., SDSU Campus: SDSU welcomes alumni, community members and prospective students to campus for a free day of informative tours, interactive exhibits and entertainment.
- “We Shall Remain” KPBS Reception, March 26, 5:30 p.m., KPBS Studios: The five-part PBS television series, “We Shall Remain,” presents a multi-faceted look at more than three centuries of Native-American history. The KPBS event will feature a series screening and a panel discussion celebrating the past, present and future of San Diego’s local tribes.
SDSU would like to thank the following media partners and sponsors for supporting SDSU Month:
- Associated Students
- Aztec Store
- Cloud 9 Shuttle
- Cox Communications
- The Daily Aztec
- KBNT Univision 17 and KDTF Telefutura 36
- La Nueva 106.5
- NBC 7/39
- Recuerdo 102.9
- The San Diego-Union Tribune
- Time Warner Cable
View a list of alumni who are Aztecs for Life at alumni.sdsu.edu/lifetime_members.
Take a Chance on Romance
20/30s Aztecs Sponsor Single Mingle
Mike and Elaine on their honeymoon in Costa Rica.
Looking for love in all the wrong places? The SDSU Alumni Association’s 20/30s Aztecs have a good track record when it comes to making love connections! Just ask Mike and Elaine, Aztecs who met at a 20/30s event. They got married three months ago.
Now, just in time for Valentine’s Day, 20/30s invite you to meet and pass notes with other single Aztecs at the Pre-Valentine's Day Single Mingle February 11 at Wine Steals Hillcrest. The fun starts at 6:30 p.m. A $10 charge for Alumni Association members and $15 for non-members or guests covers wine and hors d'oeuvres.
To register, please visit the 20/30s Young Alumni Web site at www.sdsualumni.org/2030s.
Take a chance on romance like Mike and Elaine. The next Aztec love connection could be yours!
“A Night with the Aztecs”
Second Annual Event Benefits Aztec Athletics
Aztec alumni and fans are invited to the SDSU Athletics Department’s second annual all-sports auction set for Thursday, February 19 at 6:00 p.m. in Cox Arena. "A Night with the Aztecs" gives you the opportunity to meet Aztec legends, coaches, and student-athletes in an environment where the only competition involves 100 silent auction items and 10 live auction items.
Tickets are $50 per person and include great food and beverages. VIP tickets are available in tables of 10 for $1,500. Proceeds benefit student-athlete scholarships.
For more information and to order your tickets to “A Night with the Aztecs,” please visit goaztecs.cstv.com/boosters/aaf/a-night-with-the-aztecs.html.
View photos from A Night with the Aztecs 2008.
All About Boomers
Lecture Series Features Wine, Cheese, and Baby Boomer Research
SDSU’s Interwork Institute is introducing a four-part lecture series presenting the latest research on so-called “baby boomers” and late life adult transitions. The Baby Boomer Wine, Cheese, and Lecture Series runs from March 13 through June 12 in both San Diego and North County locations.
Topics involve the Baby Boom Generation, those Americans born in the post-World War II years of 1946-1964. Lectures focus on the personal side of various life transitions, including retirement, age and aging, finding meaning and purpose, building a personal legacy, generational dynamics, and end-of-life conundrums.
Each lecture will be followed by a life narrative of a local “boomer” speaking about coping with personal transitions. Attendees will be encouraged to ask questions, mingle, drink fine local wines, and enjoy gourmet hors d'oeuvre.
The first lecture entitled, “Retirement – Are You Ready?” takes place March 13 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. at the Interwork Institute’s 3590 Camino del Rio North location in San Diego. The price per lecture for SDSU Alumni Association members is $20 per person or $35 per couple, $25 per person or $40 per couple for non-members. The registration deadline is March 6.
For reservations or more information, contact Patrick H. Davis, M.S.W. at Davis@iACT-now.com or (760) 212-7639.
Three Women Wednesday
Surviving in San Diego: Success and Leadership in Troubled Times
How do you survive and even rise to leadership in the most challenging economy in decades? Three prominent San Diegans share their insights and their own pathways to leadership during troubled times, which can also be the best times to get ahead if you know how.
The Business Alumni Network (BAN) is sponsoring a follow-up to last year’s highly successful 3 Tom Tuesday: Three Women Wednesday. The event is set for February 25 from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. at the NTC Promenade at Liberty Station. It features a forum presenting three of the region’s most influential business leaders:
Susan R. Nowakowski (’89), Chief Executive Officer, President, and a Director of AMN Healthcare Services, Inc.
Irene M. Stillings, the executive director of the non-profit California Center for Sustainable Energy (CCSE).
Gail K. Naughton, Ph.D., a bio-tech entrepreneur and Dean of SDSU’s College of Business Administration.
The panel discussion will be moderated by Gayle Falkenthal (’82,’93), APR, president of the Falcon Valley Group. All alumni are invited and encouraged to attend. The evening includes a networking session and hors d'oeuvres.
For more information and to register by February 20, please visit chapters.sdsu.edu/business.
SDSU Near You: SDSU President, Dean to Visit L.A.
Greater Los Angeles Chapter Sponsors Reception
How will SDSU survive the current state budget crisis? Can SDSU football thrive under a new coaching staff? How is the Honors experience engaging students today for a better world tomorrow? These are just some of the questions SDSU President Stephen L. Weber and Geoff Chase, Ph.D., Dean of Undergraduate Studies will answer for alumni at a downtown Los Angeles reception.
The February 18 event sponsored by the SDSU Alumni Association’s Greater Los Angeles Area Chapter is set for 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. in the Boardroom of Arnie Morton’s The Steakhouse at 735 S. Figueroa. The cost of $20.00 per person includes appetizers, one drink, and a meet-and-greet session with President Weber, Dean Chase, and fellow L.A. alumni.
All greater Los Angeles area Aztecs are invited and encouraged to attend. For more information and to RSVP online by February 13, please visit chapters.sdsu.edu/la.
L.A.-Area Alums Invited to Theater Event
World Premier Directed by SDSU’s Randy Reinholz
Randy Reinholz is the new director of SDSU's School of Theatre, Television and Film.
Los Angeles-area Aztecs have a special opportunity next month to attend a world premier stage production and meet the new director of one of SDSU’s most dynamic schools.
Randy Reinholz, director of SDSU’s School of Theatre, Television, and Film, is the producing artistic director of Native Voices at the Autry’s world premier of Joy Harjo’s “Wings of Night Sky, Wings of Morning Light.” Based on the tales and traditions of the author’s people, the play is billed as “a deeply compelling personal journey of struggle, displacement, self discovery, and healing” utilizing spoken word, storytelling, music, and song.
Aztec alumni are invited to the production’s March 12 opening night performance along with a special reception sponsored by the SDSU Alumni Association’s Greater Los Angeles Alumni Chapter, the Autry National Center, and SDSU’s School of Theatre, Television, and Film. Honorary chairs for the event are Jill Degan (’75) account executive for Clear Channel Los Angeles and Robert Weir (’63), president and CEO of Metro Video Systems, Inc.
The reception is set for 6:30 p.m. at the Autry National Center – Wells Fargo Theater Griffith Park Campus in Los Angeles. The performance begins at 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $30 for the reception and production. RSVP by March 6 at chapters.sdsu.edu/la. With questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or (619) 594-2586.
||Pre-Valentines Day Single Mingle
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Location: Wine Steals Hillcrest
For information, visit the 20/30s Young Alumni Web site.
||Los Angeles Area Reception with Dr. Stephen L. Weber and Geoff Chase, Dean of Undergraduate Studies
Time: 6 p.m.
Location: Arnie Morton’s The Steakhouse, Boardroom - 735 S. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90017
For information, visit the Greater LA Area Alumni Chapter Web page.
||Three Women Wednesday
Time: 5:30 p.m.
Location: McMillin Event Center, NTC Promenade at Liberty Station - 2875 Dewey Road, San Diego, CA 92106
For information, visit the Business Alumni Network Web site.
||Bay Area Aztecs Event: SDSU Men's Basketball vs. Colorado State Viewing Party
Time: 7 p.m.
Location: Sports Page Pub - 1431 Plymouth Street, Mountain View
For information, visit the Bay Area Aztecs Web page.
||Student Alumni Etiquette Dinner
Time 6 p.m.
Location: Scripps Cottage, SDSU Campus
For information, visit the Student Alumni Association Web site.
||Los Angeles Area Alumni Event: Reception and Opening Night Performance of "Wings of Night Sky, Wings of Morning Light"
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Location: Autry National Center, Wells Fargo Theater Griffith Park Campus - Los Angeles
For information, visit the Greater LA Area Alumni Chapter Web page.
Time: 9 a.m to 2 p.m.
Location: SDSU Campus
For information, visit the SDSU Month Web site.
For a complete listing of Alumni Association events, visit our event calendar. For SDSU events, visit the SDSU Event Resource Center.
San Diego State University Alumni Association
5500 Campanile Drive
San Diego, CA 92182-1690
(619) 594-ALUM (2586)
Web address: www.sdsualumni.org