A GREAT YEAR TO ENGAGE WITH CSU
A Letter from Brian Breittholz
Assistant Vice President for Alumni Relations and Executive Director of the CSU Alumni Association
“This is my chosen work…People always say, ‘Crystal, you’ve done enough,’ but I always want to know, ‘What else can I do?'”Crystal Franklin (MA ’00)
CSU Alumni Lead the Way
Alumni Dave Guinther (BSEE ’69) and Joe Stockwell (BBA ’81) teamed up with 39-season swim coach Wally Morton to initiate a much-needed facelift for the Robert F. Busbey Natatorium.
It was another banner year for CSU alumni, the CSU Alumni Association and CSU!
This report will provide you an overview of the many ways your Alumni Association worked to connect you with your alma mater and with one another.. I hope you enjoy looking through it by clicking the various links and dropdowns that provide greater detail.
As for alumni, over the past year, our alumni have distinguished themselves in numerous fields, from engineering to business, healthcare, public affairs, the arts, entrepreneurship and beyond! Here is just a sampling of recent alumni achievements:
- Mary Rose Sylvester (MBA ’98), president and CEO of Current Powered by GE, and Nancy Tinsley (MBA ’98), president of University Hospitals’ Parma Medical Center, were honored by the YWCA with its “Women of Achievement” award.
- Crain’s Cleveland Business honored 15 “Women of Note” in early May. They included Tinsley and Elizabeth Evans (MBA ’07, JD ’07), general counsel, Republic Steel; Robyn Gordon (BBA ’92, MBA ’96), director of center operations at NASA Glenn Research Center; Debra Green (BA ’78), director of community outreach, Medical Mutual of Ohio; and Lisa Rose (BBA ’98), president, Dix & Eaton.
- Alumni Dave Guinther (BSEE ’69) and Joe Stockwell (BBA ’81) teamed up with 39-season swim coach Wally Morton to initiate a much-needed facelift for the Robert F. Busbey Natatorium.
- Author and poet Mary Weems (BA ’94, MA ’96) won a Cleveland Arts Prize for literature.
- Sonya Pryor-Jones (MA ’97), who leads a nonprofit dedicated to expanding access to technology, went to the White House in June as one of the 10 White House Champions of Change for Making.
- International HIV/AIDS activist and CSU grad Crystal Franklin (MA ’00) was also invited to the White House, in her case to attend the celebrity-backed “United State of Women” summit.
- Sangy Vatsa (MS ’93) was named executive vice president and chief technology officer at Comerica Bank.
- Alumni Association Board member Alana Jochum (JD ’10), who led a breakout session at our Women’s Leadership Summit in April, was named executive director of Equality Ohio.
- Jeffrey Rolf (BME ’79, MBA ’84) was named CEO of the Ohio Aerospace Institute, a Cleveland-based organization that enhances the competitiveness of its partners through research, technology development and advocacy.
There are many more examples, but I hope you get the idea: Vikings are doing great things, across so many fields of endeavor.
The University, too, has had an incredible year, as reflected in the digest of news coverage you’ll find at storify.com/CLE_State. By way of a few highlights, CSU was again named among the best universities and colleges in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, and we have been recognized by CNN, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg News and other national media for our institution-wide efforts to help students graduate on time and prepared for a rewarding career.
The Brookings Institution – one of the nation’s most influential and trusted think tanks – ranked CSU in the top three of Ohio’s four-year public universities for return on investment, noting that our graduates have mid-career salaries that are more than $10,000 higher than those of demographically similar graduates from other schools.
And The Chronicle of Higher Education reported that CSU led all U.S. universities for increases in research spending on science and engineering. Between fiscal years 2004 and 2013, CSU was #1 in the nation with total research spending up 298 percent and federal research spending up 684 percent.
Again, I could go on. And on. But the bottom line is, all these great achievements – and many others – are attracting students, boosting CSU’s reputation and increasing the prestige and visibility of a CSU degree. And these achievements are made possible, in part, by alumni support, which I’m happy to say is growing steadily!
So thank you for engaging with CSU in your own way, whether it’s through annual financial support for current and future students, employing student interns, attending alumni events, reading and sharing alumni communications, recommending CSU to a prospective student, or volunteering in the community alongside fellow Vikings. Through this report, I hope you enjoy learning about the many ways we aim to keep you engaged with Cleveland State for many years to come!