Kinesiology professor Lauren Morimoto has been named Director of Diversity and Inclusive Excellence at SSU. She applied for the position to reframe conversations about diversity - rather than something SSU "has" to do, as something SSU wants to do. Diversity promotes academic excellence and positive learning experiences for students in- and out- of underrepresented groups, she says.
Recent Entries in Spotlight
Mo Phillips says she wakes up every day grateful she works at SSU.
Since 2000, Phillips has served as SSU's Associate Director of Student Development, prior to her current position she was a Residential Life Coordinator of Zinfandel Village from 1997 until taking her most current position.
As an Associate Director of Student Development she is responsible for supervising the Residential Life Coordinators who manage the continuing-student villages, which include Beaujolais, Tuscany, and Sauvignon East.
What brought you to SSU and a career in Residential Life?
When I was in High school I always wanted to be Julie McCoy on the Love Boat! I applied to be a Recreation Major at University of Wisconsin LaCrosse and in my time there was able to do a lot of programming, working with students and after 4 times applying, finally got an RA job! I was also very active in community event planning through my program. After leaving LaCrosse, I went to Grad School at Northern Arizona University and worked in Res. Life and on campus as a programmer there too.
I also got my Masters Degree in Counseling with an Emphasis in Student Personnel. Once I got my degree, I moved to Eastern Washington University(3 years) and University of New Hampshire(3 years) to be Hall Directors and got even more experience working with athletics promotion, student activities and Res Life.
Finally, after getting offers from both Oregon St. and SSU, I decided that I really loved the environment here, wanted to live on campus a few more years, would get to continue to do programming, and really liked this Chuck Rhodes fellow that interviewed me, so I moved here! That was 17 years ago and I have loved every minute of my time here! And I feel that every day I get to be the Cruise Director on the SS SSU!
You have a close up, intimate view of students as each class moves through their college experience . How has the typical SSU student changed over the years that you have been here?
Oh goodness, lots has changed over the years...the way students communicate, use/misuse meds, parental involvement, dealing with conflict, the stress they are under, pressure from parents, inability to deal with their stress in healthy ways etc. I have seen students have less faith in each other, less patience for themselves and others, more fearful of roommates when they are different etc
That said, I have also seen a rise in student involvement in service to the community, stronger leaders, people asking more questions and more and more people attending events on campus, whether they be dances, lectures, comedians, Big Nites etc.....
I would love to see more SSU Spirit in what they wear, going to sporting events etc...., but we are working on that! Fact is , I LOVE WORKING WITH STUDENTS! Not just the ones who make it "easy" for me and for us, but also those that are challenging. They all keep me on my toes!
It is know far and wide that you eat, breathe and sleep SSU. Why are you such a happy Seawolf?
You know, people ask me that all the time. I have a very strong work ethic (I blame my mom:), which really drives me to do my job and do it to the best of my ability, but I guess It's more than that.
As I mentioned above, I love the people I have worked with - students, staff and faculty alike. I love that this is such a relationship campus because that is who I am. I like to laugh, to talk, to see what the students are thinking, to go to the sporting events with my kids and to try to expose them to the amazing people and opportunities here.
I have been challenged here, but mostly, I have been supported and the ideas that we have had to improve campus life or address changing needs of our community, have been supported. This is the kind of environment I want to work in.
Everyone that I have worked with comes to work and does the best they can for that day. What else can we ask for? I also chose this environment because of it's casual nature. It's something that is very important to me. I have been at universities where people are so stiff and wear suits, and wonder why students cannot relate to them.
That is not me and SSU has allowed me to be me(for better or worse I guess). Finally, SSU is a place that is not afraid to grow in positive directions and to address the growing needs of our population. I wake up every day and say "I get to go to work today". I am lucky.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
Right here I hope. Doing my thing and being The Cruise Director!
What do you do for fun outside of SSU? Any guilty pleasures?
I am a pop culture nut, so I watch a lot of reality tv/keep up on entertainment news/watch & go to sporting events. I have a budding collection of bobble heads, hike when we can, keep in touch with my family back in Wisconsin, go to community events, keep up with my kid's very active schedules and try to keep track of our cats:)
I love music and movies, and my kids and I can often be found singing loudly on our car rides. As for guilty pleasures, I absolutely love "What Does A Fox Say" and that casino might be an issue for me.
How have your children handled such a life?
My kids have grown up on campus and may know more about SSU than most people who work or live here. Alfred can give a tour of Person Theatre on his own and Alina believes she will be working at the Super Kids Camp when she is a student here.
If 300 Northern California math teachers were supported by the North Bay Mathematics Project (NBMP) in summer 2013, how many K-12 students have benefitted from the Project's work over the past 10 years?
Tucked away in the back of the Facilities Department is the campus lock shop and the man who holds the keys to the kingdom that is Sonoma State--Mark Utarid.
Judging by the decorated workspace it is easy to see that Mark is definitely a fan of both cars and basketball. Cards of former players are neatly adhered to his desk and images of speeding cars fill the majority of empty wall space.
Although Mark has made this space his own, work is also done around the clock. Mark is in and out, sometimes making 10 to 15 service calls a day as a locksmith for Sonoma State's Facilities/Lock Shop Department. At times he has made up to 50 service calls in a single day.
A young man who is using his struggles with poverty in his native country to help his people, has been selected one of the 23 recipients of the California State University Trustees' Award for Outstanding Achievement. He is a graduate of Elsie Allen High School in Santa Rosa, CA.
The new Pacific War Memorial installation at Sonoma State University's Holocaust and Genocide Memorial Grove is designed to remember those victims, to educate and inform general public opinion on the history of the war in the Pacific, 1931-1945, and to offer a measure of peace and reconciliation for survivors of those atrocities and families of victims.
Newly elected Associated Students President, Mac Hart, has big plans for Sonoma State University. Now entering his senior year at SSU, he was elected in Spring 2013. His running mate, Anthony Gallino, was elected as Executive Vice President.
Hart plans to improve upon the accountability of the Associated Students. He is dismayed by the disconnect between student representatives and the student body that elected them in the first place. Moving forward, he is also hoping to improve communication between student run organizations, as several overlap at with shared visions or goals.
Dr. Patrick Jackson has been with the Criminology & Criminal Justice Studies Program for more than 23 years. He is founding editor of an online scholarly journal, the Western Criminology Review, and teaches criminology, research methods, juvenile justice, and the senior capstone course. He has written a book, articles and chapters on wide-ranging topics and reports based on federal and state grants.
His latest publication is a dramaturgical analysis of how people manage their identities in a dog park. His current research uses photo elicitation interview techniques to understand the role of animals and animal-assisted therapy in the developing lives of foster youth.
"Studying literature is good for you," says Dr. Brantley Bryant of the English department. "Encountering literary texts helps develop sympathy, imagination, and critical thinking skills suited to a changing world. Playing around with books is fun, but it can also generate truly new solutions for the pressing problems of our society."
In his teaching, Bryant aims to help students hone their skills as perceptive interpreters and to connect them to the rich resources contained within the diverse traditions of literature in English.
Bryant joined the SSU faculty as an assistant professor in the fall of 2007 after completing his Ph. D. in English at Columbia University, specializing in medieval British literature. Bryant's doctoral dissertation focused on the connections of politics and poetry in fourteenth-century England, expressing his interest in the political and social power of literature.
"I was pleased by how many of our supporters turned out to hear the results. When the results were read I smiled incredibly wide, high-fived Anthony and hugged Sachi Silva, who was our spectacular campaign manager," he said. "With so many of our supporters at the results night, it felt really good to have won because it showed how effective their efforts were."
Jamila Dozier spent her K-12 education attending Catholic school in San Francisco, and when she began as a freshman at Sonoma State University she admits it was "a tough transition." From uniforms and classes on religion to the atmosphere of SSU, Dozier was able to find a common link between these two environments in the form of community service.
All Entries in Spotlight
- Nov 22 2013 Lauren Morimoto - Reframing Diversity
- Nov 12 2013 Q&A With Mo Phillips: Loving Every Minute at SSU
- Nov 6 2013 North Bay Math Project: Solving A Great Math Problem Regionally
- Oct 1 2013 Mark Utarid - SSU Key Master
- Sep 13 2013 John Michael Vincent Coralde: Dreams of Helping His Native Land
- Sep 3 2013 Pacific War Memorial
- Jul 29 2013 Gentleman Farmer Heading Associated Students This Year
- May 2 2013 Pat Jackson - Inside Criminal Justice
- Apr 22 2013 Brantley Bryant - Rebooting the Middle Ages for the 21st Century
- Apr 2 2013 Mac Hart - Sprouting Connections
- Mar 21 2013 Missy Brunetta - Problem Solver
- Mar 6 2013 Jamila Dozier - Service with a Smile
- Feb 20 2013 Martha Dunlop Peterson - Chronicling Life's Journey
- Feb 11 2013 Armand Gilinksy - A Special Case
Jan 24 2013
Professor Ben Ford Does
the Math...and More
- Jan 4 2013 Marylu Mattson - Hutchins pioneer
- Dec 5 2012 Claudia Luke - A Bridge Between Individuals and the Environment
- Nov 7 2012 Mark Fabionar - "Cultivating a Community"
- Oct 26 2012 Genevieve Sullivan - Making Things JUMP
- Oct 17 2012 Jeffrey Reeder - Spanish guru
- Sep 25 2012 Merlin Hanauer - "Poverty Traps"
- Sep 12 2012 Lynn Cominsky - Physics Diva
- Aug 24 2012 Carlos Pena - Spirit of SSU
- Jul 24 2012 Christopher Dinno Honored with Facilities Managers Recognition Award
- Jul 17 2012 Troy Cullison - Making Re-entry Count
- Jun 22 2012 EXCEL for Youth Turns 30!
- Jun 6 2012 Punya Droz - Cambodian Angel
- May 4 2012 Volt - Small But Mighty
- Apr 23 2012 Organization Development - Mastering the Future
- Apr 13 2012 Deidre Tubb - A Passion for Composting
- Apr 4 2012 Father of Free Speech Memorial Planned
- Mar 19 2012 Kim Hester Williams - "Minstrel Acts"
- Mar 9 2012 Cultural Resources Mgmt. - 30th Anniv.
- Feb 16 2012 Christina Baker - Oscar Irony
- Feb 6 2012 Black Scholars United - Empowerment
- Jan 27 2012 Gavin Moloney - Ramen to Romaine
- Jan 18 2012 Sherri Anderson - Serendipity Calls
- Jan 4 2012 Jessica Parker - Tech-Savvy Teachers
- Dec 5 2011 Alexandra von Meier - "Green" Goddess
- Nov 29 2011 Kristel England - Pathways from Poverty
- Nov 16 2011 Kim Liaz - Out of the Comfort Zone
- Nov 4 2011 Heidi LaMoreaux - Personal Geographies
- Oct 25 2011 Brian Wilson - Masterful Music
- Oct 13 2011 John Sullins - Rethinking Robots
- Oct 6 2011 Ramona Indrebo - Advocating for Elderly
- Sep 16 2011 Natalie Hambalek, Hearst Scholar
- Aug 26 2011 Andy Collinsworth: A Musical Leader
- Jun 15 2011 Nadir Vissanjy: Harvard Bound
- May 12 2011 Daisy Meyer, Graduating Senior
- Apr 6 2011 SSU Welcomes a New Career Advisor
- Feb 17 2011 John Sullins Receives IACAP Award
- Feb 11 2011 ΦΒΔ Honoring Internationalism
- Jan 27 2011 Pena Honored for His Community Service
- Jan 9 2011 Advancing World Harmony With Music
- Nov 15 2010 Keeping it Dramatic with Judy Navas
- Oct 26 2010 Sean O'Neill - An Eagle Among Us
- Oct 12 2010 Doug Leibinger, Jazz Program Director
- Sep 15 2010 Brandy Harris, Recipient of William Randolph Hearst / CSU Trustees' Award
- Aug 25 2010 Behind the Scenes with Don Romesburg
- Jun 24 2010 SSU Soccer Coach Offers Expert World Cup Commentary on KBBF 89.1 FM