Jay Jefferson, a Cal State Fullerton Mihaylo College economics alumnus, is a legislative director for California Assemblyman Mike Gipson in Sacramento.

Mihaylo economics alumnus Jay Jefferson credits his career in Sacramento to leadership roles he held as a Mihaylo student. “One of the most important factors in my personal development was my ability to gain exposure to early leadership opportunities. These allowed me to improve my résumé and be an impressive candidate when reviewing work experience for the next opportunity.”

Jay Jefferson II ’12 (economics) is legislative director for California State Assemblyman Mike Gipson (D-Carson). In this role, Jefferson leads the representative’s staff on legislative and budgetary priorities for the 64th Assembly District, which encompasses much of the Los Angeles South Bay area. He discusses the path he took to his current position and how students interested in public sector careers can get started.

What was your path to securing your current legislative director position?

I initially came to Sacramento as a result of the Jesse M. Unruh Assembly Fellowship, which is similar to an internship program and gives 18 fellows an opportunity to serve as direct staff in a legislative office or committee. I was placed in the office of Assemblywoman Holly Mitchell, who is now a state senator.

This role gave me a unique opportunity, in which I staffed one of the toughest committees in the California Assembly, the Assembly Health Committee, and staffed four substantive pieces of legislation, in addition to a resolution, while in my first year. This foundation was a launching pad when I started looking for other opportunities once the fellowship was over. Read More

Mihaylo College senior Katherine Gwaltney interned with Adobe in San Francisco in summer 2017.

Katherine Gwaltney, an instructional student assistant at the Mihaylo Tutoring Center and a trustee for Associated Students Inc. (ASI), discovered a special vibe in the corporate culture of Adobe. “The energy at tech companies is unparalleled. There is a lot of excitement and responsibility that comes with introducing new products and getting future customers to buy in to the benefits of the product,” she says.

Katherine Gwaltney ’18 spent the summer in San Francisco as an inside sales intern with Adobe Systems’ Experience Cloud, which provides corporate customers with a single platform to manage their business needs and provide optimal customer service. She discusses her experience, what it’s like working in tech companies and how to maximize intern experiences.

What were the duties of your Adobe internship? 

I worked as an inside sales intern with Adobe’s Experience Cloud, an enterprise marketing program designed for businesses that integrates data, insights and technology to improve customer experiences. I focused specifically on a strategic financial services and insurance industry team to build relationships and ultimately sell Experience Cloud solutions to large companies.

Among my duties were identifying key decision-makers; reaching out to them by email, phone or social media; maintaining account partnerships; generating new reports for managing sales data and reaching the most valuable customers; qualifying leads; and engaging with account executives and my entire team to improve the sales process. Read More

A CSUF Mihaylo College student meets with a recruiter at a Sales Leadership Center career event.

Whether you seek a career in retail or accounting, you will be marketing your personal brand through sales skills, including persuasive communication and interpersonal capabilities. Photo by Chris McCarthy

From résumé development to honing your 30-second elevator pitch, Mihaylo College’s Sales Leadership Center provides opportunities for Cal State Fullerton students of all majors to get a jump start on their future. The center will be hosting a career workshop on Sept. 26, a career academy with networking opportunities on Sept. 29 and a career fair with leading sales employers on Oct. 4.  

Regardless of where your career takes you, it will surely have a sales component, for all entrants into the job market must sell themselves to potential employers. Any entrepreneur bringing a product to market needs to know the basics of selling and anyone doing freelance work must be able to convince people to pay them for their services. In truth, business doesn’t happen without sales, so these skills are crucial.

Through events sponsored by the Mihaylo College Sales Leadership Center, you can ensure that you have the tools needed in the modern marketplace.

Connect with Employers

The center will host a career fair on Wednesday, Oct. 4, from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in TSU Pavilions, featuring 37 employers seeking sales talent for jobs and internships. The event is free to all CSUF students. RSVP for the event online. Read More

Mihaylo College marketing alumnus Don DiCostanzo, CEO of Orange County-based Pedego Electric Bikes.

Mihaylo marketing alumnus Don DiCostanzo has found that electric bikes are an idea whose time has come. “We’re in the business of selling fun first and bicycles second,” he says.

Don DiCostanzo ’79 (marketing) is the co-founder and CEO of Pedego Electric Bikes, a Fountain Valley-based company that has grown to become the largest manufacturer and distributor of its kind in North America. The Mihaylo alumnus discusses the past, present and future of his enterprise.

With worsening traffic congestion, greater health and fitness awareness, and increased environmental consciousness, bicycle commuting and recreation is rising in popularity throughout the United States.

Globally, electric bicycles sold 35 million units in 2016, according to Navigant Research. By 2025, it is expected to be a $24.4 billion worldwide industry, proving that transportation by bicycle is becoming a more desirable option for many city dwellers and outdoor enthusiasts.

From Small Startup to Industry Leader

Mihaylo alumnus Don DiCostanzo ’79 (marketing) has been working to bring electric bikes to the North American consumer for nearly a decade. In 2008, he launched Pedego Electric Bikes, which produces high-quality, battery-powered bicycles for everyday use by people of all ages. Read More

A Mihaylo College student talks with a recruiter at a job fair at Cal State Fullerton.

From high-tech to sales, Mihaylo College career events provide an invaluable connection between the Southern California job market and business students. Having a strong résumé, dressing professionally and following up with recruiters are some of the keys to maximize your chances at these events. Photo by Chris McCarthy

The Mihaylo College Fall 2017 Business Career Fair will be held on Wednesday, Sept. 27 at TSU Pavilions. Featuring companies across a diverse selection of industries, the annual event seeks to connect students with companies hiring for jobs and internships. Here are seven things you should know about how to get the most out of the event.

  1. Research the companies.

Do some basic online research to find out the mission and products or services these companies offer so that you will be better informed when you converse with their representatives at the event. Wondering what type of opportunities these companies have? A review of major job search sites, such as Indeed or CareerBuilder, or a look at the careers section of their corporate website, can give you some idea.

This year, over 40 companies will be coming to the event to talk to you, including Target, Northwestern Mutual, Enterprise Rent-a-Car, PepsiCo, Aerotek, Johnson & Johnson, and the Irvine Company.

  1. Register for the event.

Undergrads, grad students and alumni of any major may attend the career fair, but you do need to register. Reserve your spot today! Read More

Hilltop view of Cape Town, South Africa, one of the growing metropolises that are at the heart of socioeconomic transformation of the world's second most populous continent.

With a population of nearly 4 million, Cape Town, South Africa, is one of 33 metropolises in sub-Saharan Africa with more than 1 million inhabitants. While urbanization has brought the rise of urban poverty, it also holds the promise of industrial development, as has occurred in other parts of the world. Photo from Pixabay

Africa’s population is the fastest-growing of any region on earth, exceeding 1 billion in 2013 and expected to more than double by 2050. Will the region experience rapid economic growth, as has occurred in other parts of the world? Discover the challenges and potential opportunities the African continent faces in the 21st century.  

With 54 independent countries and a rapidly-growing population that currently exceeds 1 billion, the African continent is among the world’s most diverse and high-potential economic regions.

While currently the most impoverished and undeveloped region on earth, the continent is rich in natural and human resources, sparking hopes that economic miracles such as those that have occurred in parts of Asia and Latin America could transform the continent into an economic powerhouse.

However, as of yet, growth rates of real GDP have failed to keep pace with population growth in many African countries, prompting a decline in living standards, while geopolitical, social and environmental headwinds have hindered economic development in many places. Read More

Mihaylo College grad Ruben Velasco '17 in Washington, D.C., where he had an internship in 2017.

Ruben Velasco ’17 in Washington, D.C., with the U.S. Capitol in the background. The accounting graduate found it rewarding to work in the health sciences field. “My work contributed to a cause that I care about: helping other people,” he says. “I would be extremely fortunate to work for an amazing organization such as this. It is something I hope for in my future.”

Ruben Velasco ’17 (accounting) spent the summer in Washington, D.C., in a financial analyst role at the National Institutes of Health, one of the world’s leading biomedical and public health research centers.

For most students and graduates, internships provide an opportunity to move beyond familiar surroundings and develop skills, grow their network and explore potential career paths. For Mihaylo accounting alumnus Ruben Velasco ’17, a summer internship took him to the nation’s capital, where he held a financial analyst role at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the nation’s leading federal medical research center, in Bethesda, Maryland.

Velasco obtained the internship through the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU), which supports internships with federal agencies for students and recent graduates.

Reducing Student Loan Burdens for Health Science Researchers

While working at the NIH might conjure up images of a medical laboratory environment, Velasco’s position involved financial administrative tasks. Read More

Members of the recognized fall 2017 board of Beta Alpha Psi's Mihaylo College chapter pose in SGMH hall.

The fall 2017 board of Cal State Fullerton’s chapter of Beta Alpha Psi, which was recently honored with Superior status. “We find that students involved in BAP are more engaged in the classroom, and when they graduate, they are prepared to lead in their field,” says Vivek Mande, interim chair of the Department of Accounting.

The Mihaylo chapter of the finance and accounting fraternity Beta Alpha Psi (BAP) was recognized with superior status for last academic year. The ranking is the second-highest honor available to chapters in the international organization, which has 300 chapters on university campuses worldwide.

From preparing the next generation of accounting professionals to providing professional development opportunities to alumni and others in the industry, Mihaylo College’s accounting program is on the cutting-edge of one of the most in-demand fields in the contemporary economy.

Crucial to the Department of Accounting’s outreach to students is its three clubs – Beta Alpha Psi, the Accounting Society and the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.

This summer, the executive director of the international Beta Alpha Psi organization notified the Mihaylo branch of their achievement of Superior status for the 2016-2017 reporting year, the second-highest recognition that the organization bestows. The status is based on professional activities and service hours per member, as well as chapter outreach activities. The club’s greatly appreciated faculty advisors are accounting lecturers Glen Hatton and Randy Hoffman. Read More

California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom speaking at an event in Orange County sponsored by Mihaylo College's office of Lead SBDC.

Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom discussed his vision for California’s economy at CSUF’s Irvine Campus on Aug. 30. Central to his goals is a strong commitment to the state’s business community. “I have a strong entrepreneurial bias,” he says. Photo by Matt Gush

As part of a series of discussions with California gubernatorial candidates, Mihaylo College’s lead office of the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and the Orange County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce hosted Gavin Newsom, California’s lieutenant governor and former San Francisco mayor, at Cal State Fullerton’s Irvine Campus on Aug. 30. Newsom discussed the economic policies he would pursue if elected to the state’s highest office next year.

For the past quarter century, Gavin Newsom has been a leader in the Golden State, first in entrepreneurship and then in state government.

After founding several wineries, restaurants and retail establishments in the San Francisco Bay Area, at age 30, Newsom was appointed the youngest member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in the city’s history. He served as mayor of San Francisco from 2003 to 2011 and was elected to the lieutenant governorship, the state’s second-highest office, in 2010. Today, the 50-year-old Democrat is running to succeed Jerry Brown as the next California governor.

“I have a strong entrepreneurial bias,” says Newsom, who believes that the state’s Democratic Party does not do enough to support the business community. “We are pro-job but also anti-business. It belies common sense.”

Newsom believes that inflexible regulations are a hindrance to California’s economic vitality. He stated that: “the lack of capacity of understanding of nuance, that every rule isn’t black and white, the world is constantly evolving and changing, that some of these rules need to be updated, sunshined, reconsidered,” are all integral to discussions about the future of the state.

Read More

Ada Fu, a Mihaylo College finance student, poses in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany.

While interning in Germany this summer, Ada Fu ’18 explored many of the major landmarks in Central Europe, such as Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate.

For most students, internships provide an opportunity to broaden their horizons while exploring their desired career path. This experience is enhanced further when it is completed abroad, as Ada Fu ’18 (finance) discovered when she spent the summer in Germany interning with Ernst & Young (EY). She discusses the highlights of her month-long trip abroad and how students can succeed in internships, whether locally or around the world.

How did you secure this internship with EY? What made you decide to take the internship in Germany rather than finding a similar opportunity in the United States?

I found this on CSUF’s Study Abroad website, which mentioned a student exchange program with Aalen University in Germany. Through the school’s partnership, I was able to obtain an internship in assurance practice with EY in Stuttgart.

When the opportunity was presented, I knew right away that it suited me perfectly. Not only would I get to explore the world, but I would also be able to discover what a career in public accounting would look like outside the United States. I also knew that I would be exposed to different accounting standards and people of diverse cultural backgrounds. Read More