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Class Notes | Obituaries
Showing class notes submitted in last 6 months
Matt Peters ’15 is the new assistant director for Chapters & Groups. Raised in Southern California, he spent two years with the Pacific Alliance for Catholic Education in Portland, Oregon, teaching under-resourced middle school children while obtaining a graduate degree in education. As a student, Peters worked in the Housing Office and was a community facilitator in Dunne. He is thrilled to rejoin the Santa Clara community, where he will be serving the Asian Pacific Islander, Black, and Chicano Latino identity-based groups, along with the following regional chapters: Austin, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, East Bay, Napa/Santa Rosa, Peninsula, Phoenix, Portland, Reno/Tahoe, Seattle, Spokane, Stockton/Modesto, and Washington D.C.
Christian Mora-Castrellon J.D. ’15 works in legislation as a congressional staffer for the office of U.S. Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren J.D. ’75. As a graduate student, she spent a spring break in Puerto Rico investigating health and environmental concerns left behind by the U.S. Navy. Together with a small group of students for the International Human Rights Clinic, she produced a brief that was heard by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
Katie Franceschini ’15 graduated with her Master of Arts in occupational therapy from the University of Southern California (USC ’17). She is returning to the South Bay to pursue a career in pediatric occupational therapy with a strong interest in pediatric mental health.
During his time at SCU, Matt Cresci ’15 balanced being a student and a racecar driver. Less than two years after he graduated, he was awarded a $100,000 Mazda Road to 24 Scholarship, which allowed him to race in the Global MX-5 Cup. Cresci has partnered with Slipstream Performance for the 2017 season.
Anshul Ashok Vyas M.S. ’11, Ph.D. ’16 received his doctorate in electrical engineering after completing his thesis, “Carbon Nanotube Vias for End-of-Roadmap Technology Nodes” under the supervision of Cary Y. Yang.
Nathaniel Tucker ’16, M.S. ’17 was accepted into the electrical engineering Ph.D. program with full support at UC Santa Barbara. He will be studying control theory and smart infrastructure. He graduated as the top electrical engineering student in 2016.
John T. Shepard ’06, M.S. ’10, Ph.D. ’16 was awarded a doctorate in mechanical engineering from after completing his thesis, “A Framework for Collaborative Multi-Task, Multi-Robot Missions” under the supervision of Christopher Kitts.
Jane Nazareno ’16 has been accepted into the doctor of pharmacy program at the University of Washington in Seattle, class of 2021.
Madhumita Datta J.D. ’16 published the article “Egg Freezing on Company Dollars: Making the Biological Clock Irrelevant?” in the DePaul Journal of Women, Gender and the Law. Professor Stephanie Wildman of the School of Law provided faculty guidance for this article.
Andrew Chait ’16 has rejoined the Santa Clara family as assistant director of development. Chait spent the previous year working at Bronco-owned E & J Gallo Winery, where he oversaw sales goals. At SCU, he worked in the call center, managing gifts to the Santa Clara Fund.
Jasmine L. Cashbaugh Ph.D. ’16 earned her doctorate in mechanical engineering after completing her thesis, “Cluster Control of a Multi-Robot Tracking Network and Tracking Geometry Optimization,” under the supervision of Christopher Kitts.
Nnennaya Amuchie J.D./MBA ’16 published her first book, Ako na Uche: A short collection of poems from the ancestors. In its first week, it was the No. 1 new release in African poetry on Amazon. Amuchie is a social justice attorney and a fellow of the If/When/How Reproductive Justice Fellowship Program at URGE: Unite for Reproductive & Gender Equity.
Kristin Swenson ’07 married Graham Wilson on Sept. 3, 2017, in Denver, Colorado, which is where they reside. The wedding party included Ana Raab ’07, Lisa (Porter) McGaffey ’07, Erin Kunse ’07, Alix (Bogehold) Watson’07, and Laura Brown ’07.
Erik Risa ’17 was named this year’s Nobili Medal recipient. The award is given to a male graduate judged outstanding in academic performance, personal character, school activities, and constructive contribution to the University. At Santa Clara, Risa served as an engineering tutor, a bioengineering researcher, a member of SCU Emergency Medical Services, and a saxophone player in the SCU jazz band. During his junior and senior years, Erik participated in the health care ethics internship through the Markkula Center and was the Honzel fellow in health care ethics both years. Erik was accepted to the University of Washington School of Medicine and plans to specialize in neurosurgery or neurology.
Zipporah Ridley ’17 was awarded the Gracelyn Rillorta Bateman Student Inclusive Excellence Award for her commitment to advancing diversity and inclusion initiatives at SCU. In addition to serving as chair of the Student Council on Inclusive Excellence, Ridley was a Markkula Center Hackworth fellow and a Leavey School of Business Global fellow. For her Global fellowship placement, she interned with Bright Generation Community Foundation in Kumasi, Ghana, completing a comprehensive report on the effects of the TOMS Giving initiative. Next up, she’ll be heading to Syracuse to work as a JVC.
Antonis Avgoustinos Orphanou Ph.D. ’17 earned his doctorate in electrical engineering after completing his thesis, “Carbon Nanotube Ultracapacitor Characteristics and Cell Design” under the supervision of Cary Y. Yang.
Peter Phung Phu Nghiem M.S. ’87, M.S. ’14, Ph.D. ’17 was awarded a Ph.D. in computer science and engineering after completing his thesis, “Towards Efficient Resource Provisioning in Hadoop” under the supervision of Silvia M. Figueira.
Sophie Meyer ’17 is pursuing a one-year master’s degree at Oxford University. Upon completion, she will apply for a fellowship with the California State Assembly to prepare for her career in education reform. While at Santa Clara, Meyer served as a research assistant in the political science department, interned for the California State Assembly, and was the Michael Shallo Prize winner for outstanding achievement in political science.
Erika Francks ’17 is the valedictorian for the Class of 2017. She was actively involved during her time at SCU, serving as a Global fellow, a Global Social Benefit fellow, and a Neighborhood Prosperity Initiative fellow. Francks will start working for Accenture as a consulting analyst in San Francisco in October.
She writes, “I was a Global fellow the summer after my sophomore year and I went to Kolkata, India, to work for the Association for Social and Environmental Development (ASED). ASED is an environmental NGO and they have a program called the Green Rhinos that works with middle school–age students to teach them about biodiversity and the environment and help them develop their own conservation projects. As a Global fellow, my partner Lauren and I mainly made a promotional video for the Green Rhinos program and we helped out with social media and other things as well!
The summer after my junior year I went back to Kolkata as a Global Social Benefit fellow, this time working for ONergy Solar, which is a social enterprise that works to bring renewable energy to both rural and urban areas in east India. They have a huge range of products, including everything from small solar lanterns to solar irrigation pumps to solar microgrids. My partners Carson, Nate, and I wrote case studies on their different products based on observations and interviews from our field research, put together one video to assist ONergy in gaining investment and two promotional videos for customers, revamped their human resources manuals, and compiled a list of potential investors. We went out to rural villages each week to conduct on-camera interviews with customers, employees, and partners of ONergy to better understand the organization’s impact.
Right now I’m backpacking around Iceland with my dad, and I will start working at Accenture in October!”
Lidia Diaz-Fong ’17 served as the student body president for the 2016–17 academic year and held internships through the U.S. House of Representatives and the City of San José. She was also part of LEAD—a program developed to help support first-generation college students.
Neil Datar ’17 was awarded the Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, S.J. Award at commencement. Datar was actively involved in the SCU community, serving on Associated Student Government all four years, including senate chair his senior year. Datar is also part of Phi Beta Kappa, Alpha Sigma Nu, Pi Sigma Alpha, and Phi Alpha Theta honor societies. He will begin law school at Duke University this fall.
Grace Chesmore ’17 has been accepted into the Ph.D. program in physics at the University of Michigan, where she will work in an astrophysics lab. She will visit the Atacama Desert in Chile to assist in the construction of a new telescope as part of her program. During her time at SCU, Chesmore was a student researcher in the physics department; part of the Society of Physics Students, the University Honors Program, and the Sigma Pi Sigma Physics Honor Society; and president of the Woman in Physics club.
Yong Chen Ph.D. ’17 was awarded a Ph.D. in computer engineering after completing his thesis, “Supernode Transformation on Parallel Systems with Distributed Memory—An Analytical Approach” under the supervision of Weijia Shang.
The Maddy Institute at Fresno State named Nanki Bhullar ’17 a 2017 Wonderful Public Service Graduate fellow. A Sikh-American daughter of immigrant farmers and a Fresno, California, native, Bhullar is earning dual master’s degrees in social work and public health (focusing on community health sciences) at UCLA. After completing her Ph.D., she plans to return home to work with a public interest agency furthering minority wellbeing and mental health in the community. Through a $112,000 scholarship funded by The Wonderful Company, the fellowship aims to educate the next generation of San Joaquin Valley leaders by helping Bhullar and other students complete graduate degrees and return home to support the Valley through their careers.