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College of Arts and Humanities

Arts and Humanities 2007 Department Nominees and Awardees

Undergraduate Nominees

Art and Design

Jamie Ibey

Jamie IbeyMs. Jamie Ibey has been on the President’s list every semester at Fresno State while taking class loads of up to 21 units per semester. She is graduating with a BA in Studio Art with a GPA of 3.94. She is a member of both the Golden Key International Honor Society and Phi Kappa Phi International Honor Society. An accomplished portrait photographer, she started her own business 7 years ago, specializing in children and their families and is also considered to be one of the most accomplished painters in the department. Jamie’s strengths as a natural leader and commitment to community are demonstrated by her volunteer efforts such as 2003-04 Baha’I Youth Service Corps where she taught art and spiritual values to children. She has also donated hundreds of dollars of artwork for auctions benefiting non-profit organizations such as Fresno Covenant Foundation and Scholarship Uganda. As co-curator of the Annual Student Art Exhibition for CSUF Conley Gallery, she developed a computer program for organizing the inventory of student entries in the exhibit, which is now being used for all following shows.


Brittany Cooley

Brittany CooleyBrittany Cooley embodies the well-rounded student most specifically characterized by her self-discipline, academic acumen, and future promise. Ms. Cooley is a model student-athlete and Team Captain. As a leader on the Fresno State women’s golf team she played in 80% of her tournaments and worked ahead of schedule in her classes often learning the material without aid of class discussion. For three years she has been recognized for academic achievements at the Kiwanis Torch of Excellence. Her future holds much promise-her leadership in academic, athletics and in her community is something we can all be proud of.


Jill Buettner

JIll BuettnerJill Buettner will graduate in May 2007 with a major in English and a minor in French. She has a 4.0 GPA and has been a Smittcamp Honors student during her four years at CSUF. In 2003-05, she was one of the seven professional members of the Fresno Ballet, balancing the demands of that position with 15-17 units each semester. She is currently working as a tutor in the English Department Writing Center. She plans to earn a Ph.D. in English with an emphasis in British Romanticism.


Amanda K. Mewbourn

Amanda K. MewbournThe Linguistics Department is proud to nominate Amanda K. Mewbourn for the 2007 Dean’s Medal. She is the first person in her family to earn a B.A. degree. Amanda stands out as an outstanding linguistics major (TESL option) who is also completing two minors: one in Asian studies and the other in Japanese. In addition to studying Japanese, she is trying to master Mandarin (Chinese). She has developed a passion for Taiwan and spent a year studying at the National Taiwan University. To prepare for her career as an EFL teacher, Amanda has completed linguistics courses that are part of her TESL option. In addition, she has taken advantage of opportunities at the on-campus American English Institute (AEI), where she served as a volunteer conversation partner, as a volunteer teacher’s apprentice for two semesters, and as a teacher of pronunciation.

Media, Communications and Journalism

Jamie Gard

Jamie GardJamie Gard is a Smittcamp Family Honors College scholar and a MCJ student majoring in Public Relations with a minor in Business Administration. Even though Jamie works full-time and is involved with numerous community projects, she has maintained a 4.0 GPA. Jamie works as a Communications Coordinator for the Central Valley Nutrition Network and for Tutoring Club of Clovis where she tutors a variety of students ranging in age from 5-17 in areas of math, reading and writing. Jamie’s dedication to the community is overwhelming and has given numerous hours of service to her community. She volunteers in Clovis Elementary kindergarten classes, served as an application reader for the Smittcamp Family Honors College, worked with the American Cancer Society and Fresno media to publicize Relay for Life, and provided the initial concept and inspiration for the Arts & Humanities Honors Program. Aside from giving of her time to the community and college, Jamie has also served in a variety of leadership roles: founding and editing the Smittcamp Family Honors College student-run newsletter (Smittcamp Scoop), organizing the first-ever Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Regional Activity at CSUF as the PRSSA President, and serving on a variety of Associated Students (AS) committees including the Strategic Planning Committee and the AS Election Commission. Jamie has been recognized for her academic achievements through the Northern California Scholarship Foundation Academic Achievement Awards (in 2004 and 2006), by seven semesters on the President’s List and the Dean’s List for academic achievement, and as a member of Phi Kappa Phi Honors Society and Kappa Tau Alpha Honors Society. Complementing her diverse experiences as a CSUF student, Jamie participated in a 2005 study abroad program to Egypt that emphasized historical and cultural roots of Middle Easterners and African Americans.

Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures

Viviana Asencion

Viviana Asencion and her younger sister joined their parents when they came to the United States. She has supported herself through high school and college with a series of part-time jobs and grants, because education and improving her future has always been her most important goal. When she came to CSU Fresno from the L.A. area, her plan was to be a school counselor. Having almost finished her Liberal Studies degree, she took a Spanish literature class from Dr. Saul Jimenez-Sandoval. It was at this time that it became clear to her that the Spanish language and literature are as valuable as any other in the world, even though many may not appreciate it. A member of the International Honor Society, MECha (Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano) and Entre Nosotras (a club for Hispanic women), she also volunteers at the American English Institute at Fresno State as a conversation partner for international students. She works as a Bilingual Aid substitute for Fresno Unified School District, and as a para-educator substitute for special education classes for Fresno County. Viviana plans to begin the M.A. program in Spanish this Fall, and ultimately wants to finish a Doctorate degree in Spanish at the University of Arizona. She has a special interest in how women are perceived in the Latin-American culture, especially Mexican culture and feels her goal to become a professor, joining the few Mexican women with Ph.Ds, would set an example and be of encouragement to Mexican women, showing it is possible to reach their goals and dreams. Viviana feels that Spanish is essential in the United States, and that by teaching Spanish she would aid in preserving the language here in the US.


Jessie Fox Brunner

Jessie Fox BrunnerJessie Fox Brunner is a musician of depth and ability, actively involved as both a classical and jazz saxophonist. In 1999, he was selected as lead tenor saxophonist for the Kern County Honor Jazz Band, which opened for saxophone extraordinaire, Kirk Whalum, at the Bakersfield Jazz Festival. Previously in 1997, Jesse and his mother, Shirley, began maintaining a website for saxophonist Nelson Rangel. During the summers of 1998 and 1999 Jesse attended the Mile High Jazz Camp at the University of Colorado in Boulder, CO. It was there that he spent time with Nelson Rangell, and studied with Dave Pietro along with many others. Jessie has played lead saxophone for Bakersfield College jazz band and CSU, Bakersfield. In 2003, he relocated to Fresno to attend California State University, Fresno and continued his jazz studies by making the top jazz band. After only one semester Jesse's interests became more heavily involved with classical music in all areas, but specifically with classical saxophone and saxophone quartet. During performances as a solo classical saxophonist and with his saxophone quartet at Fresno State he has had opportunities to perform at many different venues. In December, 2006, his saxophone quartet recorded and received extensive radio play on KJWL 99.3 F.M. In the summer of 2006, Jesse attended the prestigious Idyllwild Arts Academy under a full scholarship. A highlight of his career was performing as principal saxophonist with the Idyllwild Arts Wind Ensemble at the Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, CA. Jesse has received scholarships from Tehachapi High School, Tehachapi Newspaper, U.S. Marine Corps, Bakersfield College, California State University Bakersfield, California State University Fresno, the Loretta Anne Price Memorial and Idyllwild Arts Academy. He is currently a member of IAJE and the North American Saxophone Alliance. Jesse is a G.P.G Publications recording artist and is published through Dorn Publications. He is currently preparing for his Senior Recital on March 10, 2007 and will be a featured soloist with the Fresno State Wind Orchestra during their concerto concert on May 6, 2007. Jesse has been privileged to study with Steven Mettler, Tower of Power saxophonist Paul Perez, and Dr. Alan Durst. He is also equally privileged and fortunate to have saxophonist/recording artist, Nelson Rangell, as a mentor and dear friend. In his formal studies, he is currently in his senior year at California State University, Fresno working on a B.A. degree in Saxophone Performance and is on track to graduate in May, 2007 with honors, Cum Laude. Above all, Jesse enjoys spending time with his wife, Katie. They look forward to beginning a family together as they support each other throughout the many joyous journeys of life.


Jennie Gray / Vocal Performance

Jennie GraySince an early age, Jennie had a passion to be involved in vocal music, singing in church and high school choirs and, later, at Merced Junior College, where she received several scholarships. When she began her formal music studies at Fresno State, she quickly became involved in Sigma Alpha Iota, serving as VP/Ritual. She has been active in Choir Council, Concert Choir, Opera Workshop (singing leading roles), Chamber Singers, and The New Music Ensemble, currently volunteering as a Choral Assistant, and page-turner for not only student convocation and recitals, but for Music Faculty concerts. Jennie was the recipient of the department’s Martha Hagen and Arthur Wahlberg Scholarships, placed 2nd in the Fresno Opera League Competition for her age division and received the Encouragement Award for the Fresno Music Club’s Bell T. Ritchie Scholarship. In addition to her numerous activities in the Music Department, she has also sung with the Fresno Grand Opera Chorus for the past two and a half years, giving her the opportunity to gain professional experience and the honor of performing and learning from many world-renowned singers, conductors and musicians, including Placido Domingo, William Boggs, Walter Attanasi, and Theodore Kutchar. Jennie has been able to maintain a 3.87 GPA, working both full-time and part-time jobs along with her many curricular and non-curricular activities.


Michael Edward Olsen, Jr.

Michael Edward Olsen, Jr.Michael Olsen has a double major in philosophy (pre-law option and in psychology.) He is a member of the Smittcamp Honors Program and recipient of the Floyd Burks, Liliane D. Wells, and the Vivian I. Pickford memorial scholarships. He carries a perfect 4.0 GPA in over 150 units of college courses. His paper on philosopher Richard Rorty’s epistemology was awarded a Juliana M. Bissett Philosophy scholarship and was published in our undergraduate philosophy journal Voicing Ideas. He has also participated in sponsored research in the College of Mathematics and Science. He served as President of the CSUF Recycling Club and volunteered with the Big Brothers, March of Dimes, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and the International student Volunteers conservation group. He was elected to the Golden Key Honor Society. He also tutors students at Hanford Union High School in math and science. He served as an intern at the Central California Legal Services, helping to clear the name and secure the liberty of a client who was a victim of mistaken identity. Department Chair Scott Moore speaks for the entire department when he writes: “Truly Michael is an exceptional individual with a principled conscience for social justice.”

Theatre Arts

Kristopher Cadieux

Kristopher CadieuxKris came to us from Stockton as a freshman in 2004 with a passion for theatre and teaching. Students rarely excel in as many areas of theatre as Kris, and he has achieved these significant accomplishments while earning a GPA of 3.84 in the major. He designed sets for our main season, including last fall’s Intimate Apparel. He also represented us at the National Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival acting competition in Washington D.C. for an unprecedented two years in a row. This spring, he combined his talents for the educational outreach production of Step On a Crack by designing the set, acting, and serving as tour/stage manager all at once. Recipient of the Scholars for Service Grant for four years, Kris has volunteered for Stone Soup, Fresno, worked with Kinesiology to develop a Young Sports program, and has maintained his own non-profit organization “Mitts 4 Kids” since 2002. Kris says with what he has learned at Fresno State, he plans to put gloves on the hands and joy in the hearts of children in every pocket of every town. We hope he does.

Graduate Nominees

Art and Design
Erin Webster

Erin WebsterA professional artist and single parent, Erin Webster “wanted to model her life for her daughter, teaching her to follow her aspirations even in the face of adversity.” Erin is now graduating with a MA in Art in Drawing/Painting with a GPA of 3.88. An exceptionally talented artist, she just completed her first show since her residency at the Fresno art Museum in 2002. Erin has been deeply involved in the Fresno Art Community while pursuing her Master’s Degree. She has taught classes at the Fresno Art Museum Summer Art Academy, served as Art Link Coordinator in the FAM Education department, worked for the FAM in conjunction with the San Joaquin River Parkway Trust to develop and teach curriculum for the Nature of Art summer camp for children ages 9-12. Erin recently wrote the entire art curriculum for the City of Fresno Parks & Recreation Department’s After School Program and is teaching beginning painting at Fresno City College. She is an outstanding artist and an even more outstanding community asset.

DawnMarie McIntosh

DawnMarie McIntoshDawn Marie McIntosh will graduate with an MA in Communication with a 3.9 GPA. In only four semesters she accomplished so much. She has presented four self-authored research papers, nationally and regionally, while acting as TA or individual instructor for five different courses. Additionally she completed her thesis, an ethnography of how race and gender is critiqued by local Latina drag queens. From her research, she is readying two manuscripts for refereed journals. Also, she is currently choosing between four different PhD program acceptances where she wants to focus on gendered communication. Eventually she hopes to return to California as a Communication professor.

Guiseppe Getto/MA in English/MFA Creative Writing

Guiseppe GettoGuiseppe Getto is a graduate student in both composition theory and creative writing at California State University-Fresno, where he teaches in the first-year writing program. His scholarly interests have included ethnographic studies of the academic labor movement and the development of a working class studies curriculum for the composition classroom. His creative interests are largely poetic, and usually involve paradoxes of duality: self and landscape, psyche and memoryscape, disappearance and the trace, fading and etching, remembering and trying to forget. Currently he is working on finishing his MFA and begins doctoral study in composition and rhetoric in the fall at Michigan State University.

Jefferson Beavers
MFA in creative Writing

Jefferson BeaversBorn and raised in Dinuba, California, Jefferson Beavers had established an enviable career as a journalist and editor when he returned to CSUF to focus on creative writing, and earn his Master of Fine Arts degree. Not content with his reputation as a top student (with a 4.0 GPA in all graduate coursework), an outstanding teacher in both the English and Mass Communications and Journalism Departments, and an exceptionally talented writer of creative nonfiction, Jefferson has distinguished himself through his service to the MFA Program, the English Department, and the community at large. His contributions include founding and coordinating the San Joaquin Literary Association, which has enhanced the life of campus and community by sponsoring and planning conferences, workshops, student and faculty reading events, and a Visiting Writers Series that brought world-renowned writers to campus including Jonathan Franzen, Marilyn Chin, and Joyce Carol Oates. Jefferson edited the university’s literary magazine, the San Joaquin Review, and helped usher the English Department into the 21st century by creating a weekly online newsletter, His contributions to the community have included coordinating the MFA Program’s participation in the local Rogue Festival, writing about campus events for, and teaching in the Central California High School Journalism Conference. Jefferson’s efforts on behalf of the university were recognized recently with the Associated Students’ Outstanding Student Leadership Award.

Sande Wu

Sande WuSande Wu graduated in Fall 2006 with a degree in Linguistics with an option in TESL. With a GPA of 4.0, Sande proved herself to be an exceptional graduate student. The high quality of her research is particularly noteworthy. For example, the abstract of one of her papers ({Literacy Games for Adult Immigrant Students”) was accepted for the 2007 TESOL International Conference, which is one of them most prestigious conferences in the field. In addition to maintaining excellence in academics, she has been actively engages in a variety of extracurricular activities. Since 2004 Sande has been teaching a variety of courses at the American English Institute and is considered an invaluable instructor. She also taught in the Department of Linguistics as well as the Learning Resource Center.

Media, Communications and Journalism
Christine Park

Christine ParkChristine is the Consumer and Morning Reporter for ABC 30 Action News, having joined the station in October 2000. She won an Emmy for her reporting on the Valley's number one morning show, AM Live. She was hired as a Production Assistant and Newsroom Trainee at KRON-TV in San Francisco upon graduating with honors from UC Berkeley. Prior to her current position at ABC-30, she was the Special Projects Producer and Weekend Assignment Editor. Christine earned her Master's Degree in Mass Communications and Journalism from Fresno State in the summer of 2006. She taught broadcast writing and reporting to undergraduate students as a graduate assistant and was honored with the Outstanding MCJ Graduate Award. She was also selected for Kappa Tau Alpha, a national honors society for journalism students and awarded “top scholar.” Christine’s master’s project was a case study analysis of the Scott Peterson case and the over-exposure of media coverage. Her project explored the reasons and motivations behind the extensive media coverage of the Scott and Laci Peterson case, and raised issues of agenda setting as well as race, gender, and class in determining coverage-worthy victims. In addition to analyzing this case from a scholarly perspective, Christine also produced a short documentary on the event and coverage. The documentary-style video contained interviews with local journalists, legal experts, and media professors, who all agree that the case contained a perfect storm of events and characters that made it the perfect story. She currently lives in Fresno with her husband Gene and her baby girl Sydney.

Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures
Karla Suarez

Karla SuarezKarla Suarez is the first member to graduate from college from a low-income family that works in the fields. She is also a nominee for the Outstanding Thesis Award, and is on the Dean and President’s lists. Karla has been admitted to the Ph.D. program in Spanish at Stanford University; she was one of 5 applicants accepted into this prestigious program –out of a total of 125 candidates that applied. It is Karla’s goal to critically analyze and revise the position of women writers within the Spanish literary canon. It is her belief that due to a lack of community and tradition, as well as the historically recognized hostility of established male writers towards women writers and citizens, women faced a series of hurdles that prevented them from being considered important within literary circles. Karla has been heavily involved with non-profit organizations that promote a community awareness within the Latino community. She was a volunteer high school tutor for three years thorough the Teaching Fellows Program at Fresno State, and has been an active member of University Migrant Services. Karla has also been an active member at various Catholic charity groups in three different communities. Karla has had to work in the fields, packing houses, and has been a translator, a nurse assistant and a community liaison for a non-profit mobile clinic in order to support her studies.

Ryan Nyberg
MA in Music Composition

Ryan NybergRyan T. Nyberg is a graduate student in the Department of Music, and is finishing the MA Degree in Music with a major in Composition with a 4.0 GPA. He received his BA in Music from the Thornton School of Music at University of Southern California, where he graduated cum laude, and received the Student Leadership Award for his work in the Concert Choir. Before that he received Associates degrees from Fresno City College in Music with an emphasis in Piano and in Business Administration, where he graduated with highest honors. A native of Fresno, he was homeschooled K-12, graduating from high school in 1995. Currently, Ryan works nights full-time as an office administrator, and goes to school full-time during the day. He is also a teaching associate in the Music Department, teaching beginning keyboard as a general education course. He plays flute, piano, and drums in his church worship team, and has conducted, run rehearsals, and done transcription work for his church as well. In his spare time, he writes music for student films and promotional videos. On campus, Ryan plays with the Fresno State Flute Ensemble and the Fresno State Early Music Ensemble, and has taken part in the New Music Ensemble and numerous student recitals. He worked with the interdisciplinary research group researching pitch perception in dyadic conversations, and helped plan the inaugural Fresno State New Music Festival. For his thesis project, he is putting on an on-campus recital of original music in March, and will include a performance of his Concerto No.1 for piano and orchestra.







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