California State University, Fresno - University Journal
February 2014 Vol. 17 No. 5
Arts   |    FYI   |   Newsmakers   |   Service   |   Sports  




40 Faculty Fellows will pioneer tablet initiative

President Joseph I. Castro launched the Fresno State Tablet Program with the investiture of 40 Faculty Fellows on Jan. 13. The Fellows were nominated by the deans from all campus divisions and volunteered to participate in the inaugural cohort. They will participate in focused professional development activities this spring and intensive summer training. Their courses offered in the fall will be delivered to a diverse, multidisciplinary group of more than 1,000 students – from freshmen to graduate students. See the full story.


New wind tunnel will allow breakthrough research
A newly constructed dust tunnel on the Fresno State campus willenable research to help improve air quality in the San Joaquin Valley and throughout California. The tunnel will be used to measure water misting as a means of controlling particulate matter caused by agricultural field operations. Leading the work is associate plant science Professor Athanasios Alexandrou, with support from staff engineering specialists Diganta Adhikari and Patrick Barnes of Fresno State’s Center for Irrigation Technology. See the full story.

Mary Castro hosts new KFSR program

“First Lady’s Focus,” a new weekly program on Fresno State’s radio station KFSR 90.7 FM, is hosted by Mary Castro, wife of President Joseph I. Castro. Co-hosted by KFSR Program Director Julie Logan, the program airs Sundays at 10 a.m. at 90.7 FM or streamed online at The public affairs program will showcase the personal stories of “people who love Fresno State,” Mary Castro said. She and Logan will interview faculty, staff, administrators, students, alumni, donors and other friends of the university. Past programs can be accessed here. See the full story.




Professor Alex Espinoza wins national fellowship
Fresno State associate professor of English and published novelist Alex Espinoza was awarded a 2014 Creative Writing Fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). The fellowship provides $25,000 to published writers so they can set aside time for writing, research, travel and general career advancement. Espinoza is one of 38 authors chosen from a field of 1,300 for artistic excellence and merit. Espinoza is the author of two novels and his fiction has appeared in several anthologies and journals. His essays have been published at and in the New York Times Magazine. See the full story.


Dr. Mamta Rawat wins CSU Faculty Research Award
Biology professor Dr. Mamta Rawat is one of two researchers honored with the California State University Faculty Research Award. She was honored at the CSU Biotechnology Symposium Jan. 9-11 in Santa Clara along with Dr. Betsy Read, professor of biological sciences at California State University, San Marcos. Rawat was recognized for her “excellent research track record and her efforts to incorporate her research and evidence-based approaches into her classroom teaching practice” for which she was also named a National Academies Education Fellow in the Life Sciences. Biology student Samariah Bautch was named a Howell-CSUPERB Scholar for 2014. See the full story.



Zoldoske named national irrigation ‘Person of the Year’
Dr. David F. Zoldoske, director of the Center for Irrigation Technology at Fresno State, is the Irrigation Association’s Person of the Year.  The award honors a person outside of the commercial irrigation industry who has made outstanding contributions toward the acceptance of sound irrigation practices or policies. See the full story.






Governor’s budget proposal for CSU: $142.5 million
The Governor’s 2014-15 budget proposal includes a $142.2 million budget allocation for the CSU. President Castro said he does not yet have a specific budget for Fresno State, but he expects a year of stability. And, he said, “We are looking forward to serving an additional 400 students in the fall based on funding announced in November by the chancellor.” See the full story.



Parking lot designations change from letters to numerals
As part of the Wayfinding Signage Program, the university has installed new designations for the 31 parking lots on campus, changing from letters to numbers. Temporary signs stating the old lot letters have been placed adjacent to the new signs and will remain up through the semester as the campus transitions into using the new lot designations. All are encouraged to use the new name for easier/faster transition. Download map pdf.


Nancy Ayala joins University Advisory Board
President Castro appointed Nancy Ayala to the University Advisory Board, a panel of community members who advise him regarding the improvement and development of the university. Ayala is the Tribal Council chairwoman of the Picayune Rancheria of the Chukchansi Indians in Coarsegold. The University Advisory Board, chaired by Sandy Brown, includes members Jim Anton, Armen Bacon, Katherine Flores, J. Michael McGowan, Michael Patton, James Shekoyan, Gena Strang-Behrens, Julia Tone, Zoua Vang and Allysunn Walker-Williams.


Foundation adds four members
Four new members have been elected to the Board of Governors of the California State University, Fresno Foundation. The new members are Darius Assemi, Carol Chandler, Omel Nieves and William “Bill” Smittcamp. The foundation’s mission is to advance the university’s strategic objectives by encouraging philanthropy, inspiring leadership and promoting fiscal accountability. The foundation is responsible for management of the financial activities relating to sponsored research grants and contracts, acceptance of gifts and donations and oversight of investments that includes a $133 million endowment. Read the full story.


President’s statement in opposition to boycott of Israeli academic institutions
On January 3, 2014, President Castro issued this statement:
I join my colleagues in the California State University system and other universities across the country in strongly opposing the recent call by some scholarly associations for a boycott of Israeli academic institutions.
Academic freedom is a core principle of our university, and the American Studies Association’s call for a boycott of Israeli academic institutions is directly opposed to that principle.

Fresno State is a place where students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members can come together to research, discuss and debate all issues of the day and develop new approaches and solutions to those issues. To restrict academic freedom in order to advance political causes runs counter to our mission.

Thomas J. Ebert American Frontier Collection on display through February
The Henry Madden Library will feature a full-gallery exhibition of rare books from the Thomas J. Ebert American Frontier Collection through February in the Leon S. Peters Ellipse Gallery. Ebert, a retired Fresno State librarian and academic administrator, spent a lifetime traveling in the West and collecting books related to the American frontier. Since 1993, he donated almost 2,000 titles, valued at approximately $60,000, to the Madden Library. See the full story.


CineCulture spring lineup 
Fresno State’s CineCulture spring film series is underway. The free, public film series also is an academic course in the Department of Mass Communication and Journalism. The on-campus screenings are followed by discussions on Fridays throughout the semester. CineCulture also works in conjunction with Fresno Filmworks to screen films off campus.
Upcoming CineCulture dates are:

  • Feb. 7: “Glory Road” (African Peoples History Month).
  • Feb. 21: “Of Civil Rights & Wrongs: The Fred Korematsu Story”
  • March 21: “Bidder 70”
  • April 4: “Himalaya Song”
  • April 11: “Ip Man”
  • May 2: “Free Angela & All the Political Prisoners”

Three additional CineCulture screenings are scheduled but films have not been announced. A film will be shown March 7 as part of Lunafest, in collaboration with the Women’s Resource Center at Fresno State. The Fresno Filmworks films are shown at the Tower Theatre (815 E. Olive Ave.) with the first screening set for Feb. 14 featuring Oscar-nominated short films. For more information, contact Dr. Mary Husain at or 559.278.5702.


Bulldog Pride Fund donation top $300,000
The Bulldog Pride Fund, an endowed scholarship that was established under the auspices of the Fresno State Alumni Association in 2006, has surpassed $300,000 in total donations. The fund’s mission is simply "To support students attending Fresno State." Today, the Bulldog Pride Fund endowment provides six annual scholarships of $2,000 each and will distribute a total of $12,000 this fall. Applications for 2014-15  Bulldog Pride Fund scholarships are being accepted online through Feb. 28. More details at By next fall, the Bulldog Pride Fund will have awarded 34 scholarships valued at $61,000.




Google Analytics provides information about your website

By Susan Hawksworth
Continuing and Global Education

As part of our continuing communication efforts, it’s useful to know more about those who are visiting our websites and what they might be looking for when they get there.

Google Analytics offers a treasure trove of information about visitors to your website. Our content management system (Omni Update) has built-in tracking that can provide details about the traffic to your site.

Google Analytics is a service offered by Google that generates detailed statistics about a website's traffic and traffic sources. It can track visitors from all referrers, including search engines and social networks, direct visits and referring sites. It also displays advertising, pay-per-click networks, email marketing and digital collateral such as links within PDF documents.

The Web Communications team in University Communications provides monthly reports to website administrators who wish to review basic visitor information for their individual unit’s pages. If you are the administrator for your unit’s site and don’t already receive this report, you can request it via a work order at

If you’d like more detailed information, the Web Communications team can set up an individual Google Analytics account for you with in-depth reports. On-campus training sessions for Google Analytics may be forthcoming, if there is enough interest from the campus community. In the meantime, you can find online training videos at



The First Book Holiday Gift Project raised $390
The First Book Holiday Gift Project fundraiser on campus raised $390, which is sent to the city of Fresno PARCS Department, which will purchase and give books to the children they serve at the Hinton Park and Romain Park Community Centers. This donation will provide about 150 educational books to the children served at the community centers.

Through the First Book Holiday Gift Project, Fresno State has been able to positively impact our partnership with Fresno PARCS. The Hinton and Romain centers offer activities, programs and community services to residents. Fresno State students have also completed large-scale refurbishment and beautification projects at the two locations. Hinton Park is located in southwest Fresno and Romain Park is located in south-central Fresno near downtown.

First Book Fresno is a non-profit organization whose mission is to give children from low-income families the opportunity to read and own their first new books. The vision of the Holiday Gift Project is to put books in the homes of children in order to instill an excitement for reading, increase literacy levels and decrease poverty in our community. The holiday project is coordinated by the Jan & Bud Richter Center for Community Engagement and Service Learning.


Service-learning beyond borders
During his fall 2013 sabbatical, Dr. Klaus Tenbergen traveled to a private college in México and helped establish a group of students to volunteer for a home of developmentally disabled women.

The home, known as Association Maximiliano María Kolbe, houses 24 women. Dr. Tenbergen, Culinology ® program director in Fresno State’s Department of Food Science and Nutrition, initiated the involvement of 20 students from Tecnológico de Monterrey, Querétaro.

Under Dr. Tenbergen’s leadership, the students collected clothing and organized a fundraiser that resulted in a $1,000 donation to the home. Dr. Tenbergen and the students also secured the donation of thousands of bricks, which will be used to add a second floor to the existing home, and developed a collaboration with employees from Brose México, a German automobile industry supply company that operates a large manufacturing plant in México.

Dr. Tenbergen originally visited the campus to conduct research with Dr. José Gerardo Montejano Gaitán and Priscila Desireé Santiago Mora. He will return to Querétaro in April to complete a Greenhouse and Community Garden on an adjoining property to the Maximiliano María Kolbe home. This garden will allow the residents to be more self-supportive and provide the therapeutic opportunity to maintain the facility.

Dr. Tenbergen’s involvement in Mexico is an extension of his commitment to community service and service-learning. This international service adds to his 3,000-plus hours of professional and personal service over the past five years.




Dr. Harry George Costis, 85, who taught at Fresno State for 34 years, died Dec. 21. He was ISDS Department chair and published Statistics for Business. He was a Ph.D. adviser to the University of Nigeria and visiting professor at Athens Economics University. See full obituary here.

Sydney P. Jackson, who worked for Facilities Planning and Office of University Communications, died Jan. 2. She retired from Fresno state as the Director of Governmental Affairs in 2009. See full obituary here.

Dr. Octavio “Otto” Tocchio, who joined the Fresno State Department of Criminology faculty in 1959, died Dec. 11. He served as department chair for three years and later was an assistant dean. During his career he developed and validated Fresno State's Polygraph program, and established a program for students to study the British justice system. See full obituary here.






'Barking Bulldogs' debate team is no. 11 nationally
Fresno State’s debate team, the Barking Bulldogs, earned two first-place finishes at the Cal Berkeley - Chico Invitational and are ranked No. 11 in the nation. The Barking Bulldogs team of Candis Tate and Sierra Holley defeated the University of California, Berkeley team 2-1 in the championship round to retain Fresno State’s No. 1 ranking in the 30-team Pacific District 1. See the full story.




Shervin Zoghi selected for Clinton Global Initiative University
Fresno State sophomore Shervin Zoghi was selected to represent Fresno State at the Clinton Global Initiative University, March 21-23 in Tempe, Ariz. Built on the model of the Clinton Global Initiative, which brings together world leaders to take action on global challenges, President Bill Clinton launched the Clinton Global Initiative University in 2007 to engage the next generation of leaders on college campuses around the world. Zoghi was singled out by the Clinton Global Initiative for founding the International Organization for Developmental Entrepreneurship. See the full story.


First ‘Welty Award’ for community service presented to Daniel Ward
Senior Daniel Ward, who served more than 300 hours in the past year for local and international organizations, is the recipient of the inaugural John D. Welty Award for Excellence in Community Service. The award, which includes a $2,500 scholarship, will be given annually to a student who exemplifies the commitment to service that Dr. Welty championed during his 22 years as president at Fresno State. Ward, a senior majoring in chemistry and pursuing minors in mathematics, astronomy and biology, volunteered his time with Community Regional Medical Center, Bulldog Pantry, Sierra Foothill Conservancy and Quigley Park and its surrounding neighborhood.



Joel Beery
(University Communications) painted a picture of Fresno State football player Jeremiah Toma that was featured on the cover of the 2014 Book of Lists, a supplement of The Business Journal.






Jeff Cummins
(Political Science) was interviewed and his research on presidential State of the Union messages wasreferenced in a Jan. 28, 2014 article in the National Journal. Read the full article.






Grace Liu
(Research and Sponsored Program) co-authored an opinion piece that appeared in the Chronicle of Higher Education on Jan. 28, 2014. See the full article.







Dr. Janell Morillo
(Undergraduate Studies) has accepted an 18-month appointment as campus coordinator of Academic Advising beginning Jan. 13. For the last six years, she has served as the coordinator of the Liberal Studies program and lecturer in the Department of Counselor Education and Rehabilitation. Prior to that, she was director of the Education Student Services Center for 13 years.




James Walton
(English) was presented letters of commendation from U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein and Congressman Jim Costa for his work as a professor and a community activist who serves as a member of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Unity Committee.






Dr. Lynnette Zelezny
(Associate Provost) who has served as Dean and Associate Vice President for Continuing and Global Education as well as Interim Associate Provost, will begin the spring semester as Interim Associate Provost on a full-time basis. Scott Moore, formerly the Associate Dean in Continuing and Global Education, will serve as interim Dean.






Contemporary Dance Ensemble on stage Feb. 14-22
Join the Contemporary Dance Ensemble for a tour of the imagination of four different choreographers, Seda Arbay, Kenneth Balint, Katherine Dorn and Rogelio Lopez along side the physical performance expertise of 11 talented students as they explore the boundaries of dance and theatre.From stirring emotional landscapes to the poetic wisdom and fearless risk taking physicality of human movement, Syntheses is dance theatre at its finest contemporary expression.

Other University Theatre productions:

                  • Two Absurdist One Acts, Play by Samuel Beckett, The Bald Soprano by Eugene Ionesco, directed by Ruth Griffin, March 14-22
                  • Experimental Theatre Company, April 4-6
                  • For young Audiences - The Velveteen Rabbit, April 5
                  • University Dance Theatre, April 24-26
                  • Othello, by William Shakespeare, directed by Brad Myers, May 2-10. See ticket information.




The Fresno Community Chorus presents 'Noye’s Fludde' (Noah’s Flood), Feb. 8 -9
Bach Children’s Choir will perform Benjamin Britten’s “Noye’s Fludde” (Noah’s Flood) with Fresno State students, faculty and staff and members of the Fresno Community Chorus Master Chorale at 2:30 p.m. Feb 8-9 at the Concert Hall. See ticket information.





Keyboard Concert features Jonathan Biss, Feb. 12
Pianist Jonathan Biss will perform at 8 p.m. on Feb 12, at the Concert Hall.
He is noted for his artistic maturity and versatility, prodigious technique, and diverse repertoire ranging from Mozart and Beethoven to contemporary composers such as György Kurtág and Leon Kirchner. Biss has collaborated with many of the world’s leading conductors including Daniel Barenboim, Herbert Blomstedt, Charles Dutoit, BernardHaitink, James Levine, Lorin Maazel, and Michael Tilson Thomas.


Upcoming concerts:

  • Off the Grid: Featuring rare choral music, Feb. 10  at 8 p.m., Concert Hall,
  • Mariachi Fresno State “Noche de Amor:” an evening of romantic classics, Feb. 14  at 8 p.m., Concert Hall
  • Iranian Classical Music, Feb. 15  at 7 p.m., Concert Hall, Free event
  • Orpheus Chamber Music Ensemble Guest String Quartet, Feb. 23  at 5 p.m., Concert Hall

See ticket information.




Tuesday, Feb. 18, 6:35 p.m. vs. Grand Canyon at Beiden Field
Wednesday, Feb. 19, 6:35 p.m. vs. Sacramento State at Beiden Field
Friday, Feb. 21, 6:35 p.m. vs. Nevada at Beiden Field
Saturday, Feb. 22, 2:05 p.m. vs. Nevada at Beiden Field
Sunday, Feb.23, 1:05 p.m. vs. Nevada at Beiden Field
Wednesday, Feb. 26, 6:35 p.m. vs. CSU Bakersfield at Beiden Field
Friday, Feb. 28, 6:35 p.m. vs. Texas A&M at Beiden Field

Saturday, Feb. 22, TBD vs. Baylor and SMU - Senior Day. Free admission. Mini Horse Photo Booth. Free autograph card with a meet the team for autograph session.

Men's Basketball
Saturday, Feb. 8, 4 p.m. vs. San Jose State - Alumni Night/White Out/Spirit Fest. Fans are encouraged to wear white. White Shirt Giveaway to the first 150 fans.
Saturday, Feb. 15, 7 p.m. vs. Colorado State - Heroes Night. $5 ticket special for Police officers, fire fighters and paramedics.
Wednesday, Feb. 26, 6:05 p.m. vs. Boise State - International Night/Greek Night. Free Student Pizza Party presented by Hedrick's Chevrolet. Greek tank giveaway.

Women's Basketball
Wednesday, Feb. 5, 7 p.m. vs. Air Force - Free Admission for active and former military. Salute to Services. Members of the Wounded Warriors project honored at intermission. Veterans honored throughout the game.
Wednesday, Feb. 12, 7 p.m. vs. Nevada - Breast Cancer Awareness Night. $2 Tickets for fans wearing pink to the game. Honor Breast Cancer Survivors.
Wednesday, Feb. 19, 7 p.m. vs. Wyoming - Greek Night/Club/Organization Night/ Spring Sports Night. First 150 Greeks to the game get official Greek tank top. Introduce Fresno State spring sport teams at half-time.
Saturday, Feb. 22, 2 p.m.vs. Utah State - Mascot Day/ Pack the House. Meet and greet with mascots from around the Valley. Mutts in Motion halftime performance.

Sunday, Feb.23, 12:00 p.m. vs. Denver at Bulldog Stadium - autograph session.

Friday, Feb. 14, 4:15 p.m. vs. Sacramento State
Friday, Feb. 14, 6:30 p.m. vs. UC Riverside - Sweetheart Night. Youth jersey Friday.
Saturday, Feb. 15, 6:30 p.m. vs. Southern Utah - Camper reunion.
Sunday, Feb. 16, 1:30 p.m.vs. CSU Bakersfield
Sunday, Feb. 16, 3:45 p.m. vs. UC Santa Barbara - Staff and Faculty Appreciation Day.

Swimming and Diving
Saturday, Feb.1, 12 p.m. vs. San Jose State - Free Admission. Senior Day. Free autograph card with a meet the team for autograph session.


The Journal is published online by the Office of University Communications the first day of each month – or the weekday closest to the first – from September through May. The deadline for submissions to Journal is 10 days prior to the first of each month. Please e-mail submissions to You may include digital photos, video clips or audio clips that are publishable online. Phone messages, PDFs, faxes, and printed hard copies will not be accepted.
President, Joseph I. Castro
Vice President for University Advancement, Peter N. Smits
Associate Vice President for University Communications, Shirley Melikian Armbruster
Director of University Web Communications and Publications, Bruce Whitworth
Editorial Coordinator, Margarita Adona • Photographer, Cary Edmondson • Videographer, Randy Haar • Contributor, April Schulthies
Web Coordinator, Kevin Medeiros • Editorial Adviser, Angel Langridge
Production Assistant, Leilani Esqueda