Commencement 2014

San Francisco State had its first graduate student-only Commencement this week– and MPA students were well represented.  Congratulations to all 2013-2014 MPA graduates!

MPA students @ 2014 Commencement

MPA students @ 2014 Commencement

Here, Tijen Sahin, Sandy Wong, Karina Zhang, Michael Rojas and Rolando Jorquera wait in line to be hooded by the Dean.

MPA Students @ 2014 Commencement

MPA Students @ 2014 Commencement

Harben Porter (to far left), Amanda Rosenblum, Jennie Tucker, Khatera Ahrary and Tijen Sahin (mostly hidden behind cap) also wait in line.

Suzanne El Gamal and Britney Gabel

Suzanne El Gamal and Britney Gabel

These two MPA students, Suzanne El Gamal and Britney Gabel, were selected by the Program and College as Distinguished Students and sat on the front platform to be hooded by Graduate Dean Ann Hallum.

More pictures, including those from our own ceremony, later!


MPA Students and Alums on the Move

Many MPA students and alums have been taking advantage of their degree and moving up and around.  Among them are:

It’s All About Engagement!

Civic engagement is important for SF State MPA’ers, as they showed at President Obama’s recent speech here in San Francisco, where our students and alums were well represented.

Obama Speech

Obama Speech

Current student Ju Hong, a long-time immigration rights activist and member of the group ASPIRE (Asian Students Promoting Immigrant Rights through Education), made news across the country by speaking out while the President was talking about immigration–and engaging with the President when he turned around to speak with him.   Ju (second row from the top, left of center) told the President that his family had been deported and asked for his help and then he and others asked for deportations to stop.  Ju’s subsequent open letter to the President about immigration was published by the Huffington Post.

Also at the event (top row center) is alum Alex Randolph (MPA, 2012), who helped to organize the event, held at the Betty Ong Chinese Recreation Center.  Alex is Deputy Director of Community and Government Affairs for the San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department.

Obama from the Audience

Obama from the Audience

Amy Moore (MPA 2011), who serves as Outreach Director for the Recreation and Parks Department, also helped out with the event.

Amy stated, “I  got to live one of my dreams today. I volunteered with the White House for the President’s visit. They let me lead the team charged with getting everyone in. It was so awesome”!

To round out the participation, other alums were also present, including Shamann Walton (MPA, 2010), Executive Director of Young Community Developers, Inc.   In addition to his interest in the President’s comments on immigration, Shamann has just announced his candidacy to be an elected member of the San Francisco Unified School Board.

We are proud of all of our students and alums for their continuing efforts and activities in the community.

SF State MPA Students Research Achievement May 2013

SF State MPA students have once again distinguished themselves in various student research competitions.

Three students, Adam Sharma, Marc Joffe and Brittany Gabel, participated in the campus Research Showcase.

Brittany Gabel with her research poster at SF State Research Showcase

Brittany Gabel with her research poster at SF State Research Showcase

  • Brittany Gabel’s research topics was”The Underpinnings of Effective Internationalization within Higher Education By State”;
  • Adam Sharma’s research topic was “Identifying Determinants of Patient’s Likelihood of No-Shows”; and,
  • Marc Joffe’s topic was “Drivers of Municipal Bond Defaults During the Great Depression.”

In the campus portion of the CSU Research Competition, Adam Sharma won 1st place in the Business, Economics and Public Administration and Marc Joffe won 2nd place.   Both students were able to travel to CSU Pomona for the CSU Statewide competition, where they repeated their results– Adam Sharma won 1st place Statewide and Marc Joffe won 2nd place Statewide.

In addition, Marc Joffe competed in the SSRIC (Social Science Research and Instructional Council) Statewide competition and won 1st place in that competition.

Sharma and Joffe CSU Research 1st and 2nd Place StatewideCompetition Sharma and JoffeCongratulations and great job to all these excellent MPA students!

Future of Labor and Management–Friends and MPA Classmates

Given their jobs and career trajectories, Carrie Slaughter, Director of Labor Relations for the San Francisco Unified School District, and Amihan Makayan, California Teachers Association staff member and organizer, should be opponents.   Instead, they are friends and classmates in the SF State MPA program.  In fact, both are finishing their MPA degree in December 2012 and are in the culminating capstone course together.

What do they have in common?   Their dedication to the public service…

MPA Students
Here, their class has just finished doing presentations.   Carrie and Amihan gave back to back presentations on the facts about teacher dismissals and the rights of public employees.

San Francisco State University Pi Alpha Alpha Chapter Wins National Award for Best Chapter

At this year’s October Conference of the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration, the San Francisco State University Chapter of the national public administration honorary society Pi Alpha Alpha received the national award for the Best Pi Alpha Alpha Chapter.paa1

The purpose of the Chapter Award of Excellence is to recognize excellence in programming and chapter management in pursuit of Pi Alpha Alpha’s goals of scholarship, leadership, and excellence in graduate education in public affairs and administration.  Chapter activities recognized were mentoring for statistics students, hosting networking events with members of the San Francisco Bay Area Chapter of the American Society for Public Administration, sponsoring question and answer sessions with faculty candidates and working toward awards for outstanding achievement in the research methods classes.

Chapter officers were Eduardo Blount, President; Jacob Liles, Vice President; Chris Rosenlund, Treasurer; and, Linda Tran, Secretary. Dr. Janey Wang is the Chapter’s Faculty Advisor.

Receiving the Award for them at the National Conference was Program Director Dr. Sheldon Gen.

Congratulations to all for the great work!

Alum Named Environment Fellow at SF Foundation

Alum Marla Wilson (MPA, 2010) has been named San Francisco Foundation’s Environment Fellow for 2012-2014, congratulations, Marla!