CSUF News Service
Welcome to the Titan Family!
New Faculty Members Gather to Celebrate New Academic Year
Aug. 21, 2019
Mojgan Sami, assistant professor of public health, greets School of Nursing Director Penny Weismuller.
Fifty-one new faculty members, joined by vice presidents, deans and other faculty members and staff, were welcomed into the Titan family Monday at El Dorado Ranch, the residence of President Fram Virjee and his wife, Julie.
“At Cal State Fullerton, when we talk about the Titan family, it isn’t just a tagline,” said the president in his greeting. “Over the past 20 months, I have come to learn the joys of being part of the Titan family. Together, we strive. Together, we achieve. Together, we move this world forward.”
Virjee noted that when we lose a member of the family, it diminishes us all. And we grieve together.
“Today we lost a member of the Titan family in a most awful and horrific way,” he said, noting the death that morning of Steven Chan, the director of budget and finance for University Extended Education from 2009 to 2017.
“So as we come together to prepare for the coming year, let us dedicate this year to doing all we can to honor Steven, his legacy, and his love for and commitment to CSUF.”
Following a moment of silence and reflection, Virjee continued.
“First, thank you again for choosing Cal State Fullerton,” he said. “You come to us from all over the map. You earned terminal degrees at everywhere from Columbia and Northwestern to Arizona State, and yes, Cal State Fullerton.”
He encouraged the new faculty to use their voices, dream big, ask questions, share their crazy ideas and be the change they want to see.
“I’d also advise you to get involved on campus,” Virjee said. “Find something our students are doing outside of your discipline that you love: baseball, University Singers, Titan Rover, pumpkin launch … whatever it may be, and show up to support them!”
He called on the faculty to brag or share everything.
“Titans are humble by nature, but frankly, I am out to change that,” he said, pointing with pride to the university’s record high graduation rates, innovation, athletic prowess, and track record of securing research/grant funding.
And finally, have fun.
“The energy is infectious. The students are inspiring. The camaraderie fulfilling. And the Titan family is amazing. We’re so proud that you’re a part of it.”
New Campus Members
New faculty members, all assistant professors except where noted, and their school/departments, by college, are:
College of the Arts
Art — Mary Pomonis
Theatre and Dance — Heather Denyer
Mihaylo College of Business and Economics
Accounting — Siyi Li, assistant professor of accounting
Economics — Aaron Popp and Alberto Rivera Padilla
College of Communications
Communication Sciences and Disorders — Lisa Erwin-Davidson and Russell Johnston
Communications — Elise Anguizola Assaf (visiting faculty for fall), Gayle Brisbane, Ying “Roselyn” Du, Jeremy Shermak, Cylor Spaulding and Miya Williams Fayne
Human Communication Studies — Jessica Kamrath and Shanara Reid-Brinkley
College of Education
Elementary and Bilingual Education — Mallika Scott
Secondary Education — Kira LeeKeenan, Josephine Pham and Gavin Tierney
College of Engineering and Computer Science
Civil and Environmental Engineering — Huda Munjy and Xenia Wirt
Computer Engineering — Jaya Dofe
Computer Science — Jangyoung Kim, Shilpa Lakhanpal and Kanika Sood
Mechanical Engineering — Jin Woo Lee
College of Health and Human Development
Child and Adolescent Studies — Natsuki Atagi and Joyce Lin
Human Services — Sapna Chopra
Kinesiology — Jingwen Liu
Nursing — Christine Vu
Public Health — Portia Jackson Preston, Tabashir Nobari and Mojgan Sami
Social Work — Erica Lizano
College of Humanities and Social Sciences
American Studies — Eric Gonzaba and Kristin Rowe
Modern Languages and Literature — Celia Martinez-Saez
Philosophy — Joshua DiPaolo
Political Science — Brian Lovato
Psychology — Ella Ben Hagai
Women and Gender Studies — Tala Khanmalek and Latoya Lee
College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics
Chemistry and Biochemistry — Julia Chan
Geological Sciences — Kathryn Metcalf
The following are senior assistant librarians hired since April 1:
Megan Wagner Graewingholt