The Ferris wheel at the Orange County Fair in Costa Mesa, California.

Carnival rides, live bands and exhibits of all kinds draw area residents and visitors alike to the Orange County Fair in Costa Mesa. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

The annual Orange County Fair is going on now through Aug. 14. Here are seven things to do at the fair and some tips on how to save on admission and parking.

More than 1.3 million people attend the annual Orange County Fair in Costa Mesa, which is more than a third of the total population of the county. Last year, the fair made more than $23.1 million in sales. There’s plenty to do at the fair, from animal exhibits to concerts to edible creations. Here are seven things not to miss.

  1. Check Out the We Are One Exhibit

Projection mapping permits irregularly shaped objects to be transformed into a display surface for video projection. Visitors to the Orange County Fair will be able to experience this technology at the We are One exhibit, designed by creative and technical director John Mastri. On any day during the fair, stop by the Visual Arts Building to step into the four-sided area, where the faces of you and everyone else in the building will be turned to a video.

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Mihaylo College Dean Anil Puri stands with golfers at the 2016 Mihaylo College Golf Classic at Pelican Hill Resort in Newport Beach, California.

Mihaylo Dean Anil Puri (far left) with golfers at the Mihaylo Golf Classic on June 20 in Newport Beach, Calif. Says Joe Ferrucci ’93: “The golf tournament is thoroughly enjoyed by the participants and has become the college’s largest fundraising event. This is because the event reflects the high standards of excellence that Mihaylo College has become known for.”

On a scorching first day of summer, the 22nd annual Mihaylo Golf Classic provided more than $90,000 to fund the college, helping to ensure a world-class business education for Mihaylo’s student body.

It was the hottest June day on record in much of Southern California. Yet Mihaylo faculty, staff, alumni and donors braved the heat to raise funds for student scholarships and services at the Mihaylo Golf Classic at the oceanfront Pelican Hill Golf Club in Newport Coast. With the more than $90,000 raised at this year’s event, the total for more than two decades now exceeds $1.1 million. The foursome from Newport Beach law firm Robinson Calcagnie Inc. took first place among more than 130 golfers.

“As Mihaylo College’s largest fundraiser, the proceeds from this tournament support student-oriented initiatives,” says attorney Joe Ferrucci ’93 (accounting), a member of the Executive Council. “One of those initiatives is the Business Honors Program. This unique program provides a socially and professionally stimulating academic environment to a select group of business students who are exceptionally driven in their pursuit of excellence.”

The golf classic would not have been possible without the assistance of Helpmates Staffing Companies, the title sponsor; garment sponsor Smart & Final; dinner sponsor Southern Counties Lubricants LLC; product sponsor US Bank; and the alumni and business network.

Additional photos of the event are available on Flickr.

For more on next year’s tournament, contact Associate Director of Development Micah Howard at

This blog post is the third in a weekly series throughout July examining opportunities in different sectors of America’s diverse economy.  

A sunset view of a Texas oil rig in operation.

An oil rig in Texas. Orange County once had a large oil industry, and rigs are still in use in Brea and Huntington Beach. Image from Pixabay.

Long dependent on foreign oil, the U.S. can now boast the world’s largest domestic oil production. But it’s not all about oil – the nation’s diverse energy sector includes wind and solar energy, nuclear power and alternative fuels.

In 2014, the U.S. economy accomplished what only a few decades ago would have been unthinkable. America became the world’s top oil producer, with 12.7 million barrels per day, knocking Saudi Arabia to second place. In the 10 states at the epicenter of America’s post-recession oil boom, employment has outpaced the national average and added $300 billion to $400 billion annually to the nation’s economy. According to some estimates, without this industry’s expansion, the nation would still be mired in recession.

From Oil Producer to Oil Dependency – And Back Again

This is not the first oil boom in America. Oil was a major industry in the U.S. more than a century ago, following the discovery of the Spindletop geyser in Beaumont, Texas, forever associating the Lone Star State with oil. By 1902, more than 1,500 oil companies had been chartered in the U.S. But America’s oil industry extends even further – oil was first tapped at its source in Pennsylvania in 1859, and settlers noted oil slicks off the California coast during the 1500s.

John D. Rockefeller started one of the world’s wealthiest business dynasties with his Standard Oil Company. Yet the world wars and economic development of the 20th century depleted the nation’s oil reserves, forcing policymakers to look elsewhere for oil sources.

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Pleasure boats dominate the harborscape in Avalon, California.

The harbor of Avalon, Calif., will welcome Titans for a day of fun and networking this August. Photo from Pixabay.

Cal State Fullerton students and alumni will visit Catalina Island on Aug. 6 for a day trip sponsored by the CSUF Accounting and Business Finance Alumni chapters.

Just 30 miles offshore from Orange County, Catalina Island offers dining, water sports, beaches and wildlife observation in an island setting that feels worlds away from Southern California traffic.

Thanks to the Student Success Initiative, the Cal State Fullerton community will spend the day connecting with alumni as they explore the island with their fellow Titans on Saturday, Aug. 6. This day trip will depart from Newport Beach at 8:30 a.m. There are a total of 70 tickets, including a limited number of free tickets for current students and tickets for alumni and others in our university community. Registration is $40 for alumni association members and $50 for others, such as parents, faculty and staff. See all the details on the trip here.

The group will spend the day in Avalon, the largest city on the island, kayaking, sightseeing and networking, as well as enjoying the 75-minute boat ride on The Catalina Flyer, a 500-passenger catamaran ferry. Lunch will not be provided, but there are plenty of local dining options worth checking out. Seafood, Italian, Asian, bakeries and coffee spots are among the restaurants popular with visitors.

Sign up today for this day of fun in the sun. Catalina travel tips are available online.

For more information, contact Gleanne Dimson, student alumni engagement coordinator, at or 657-278-4277. Space is limited, so reserve your spot today.

This blog post is the second in a weekly series throughout July examining opportunities in different sectors of America’s diverse economy.  

An abandoned barn and silo against a stormy sky in the American Midwest.

Farms, small factories and other buildings often sit abandoned in America’s many rural communities. Image from Pixabay.

Nearly one in five Americans live in rural areas, which still comprise the majority of the country’s land area. Yet many communities are facing demographic challenges as young people relocate to urban areas. Diversification is important to the revitalization of the nation’s heartland.

From California’s Central Valley to the Great Plains states, some 62 million Americans live in rural or frontier areas, defined as areas outside of urban centers with no more than 2,500 residents. Though about 80% of U.S. land is rural, rural America is losing population for the first time ever, as interest in retirement in rural areas wanes among baby boomers and younger people continue to relocate to the cities in search of jobs and education.

While most states are gaining population overall, rural counties in much of the nation are in such decline that governments are considering student loans and tax incentives to prevent the depopulation of some areas.

The State of American Agriculture

The population decline in rural America obscures the fact that American agriculture is generally doing well, despite a smaller number of farmers than ever before, due to mechanization. U.S. agriculture exports totaled $115 billion at the beginning of the decade, creating a positive trade balance for this sector of the American economy. Agriculture still accounts for slightly more than half of the nation’s total land area, with California, Iowa, Texas, Nebraska and Minnesota making up the top five states by agricultural output, according to the 2012 Census of Agriculture, which is issued every five years.

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Mihaylo Accounting Lecturer Randy Hoffman was honored for improving student outcomes through a hybrid accounting course.

Mihaylo Lecturer Randy Hoffman utilized digital technology to create a hybrid accounting course with a nearly 25% improvement in student outcomes.

Randy Hoffman, the Mihaylo accounting lecturer who created an innovative hybrid managerial accounting course, received the Outstanding Accounting Educator Award for 2016.

Accounting coursework may be difficult, but with a well-designed course, most students can pass the prerequisites that may otherwise act as roadblocks to graduation.

Mihaylo Accounting Lecturer Randy Hoffman recognized that the 57% pass rate in ACCT 201B – Managerial Accounting, was too low. Working with Accounting Department Chair Betty Chavis, he designed a hybrid model in which lecture notes, transcripts and study aids supplement in-classroom instruction. The new concept has lifted the pass rate to 80%.

Hoffman’s recognition by the California Society of CPAs this year was for contributions to accounting demonstrating excellence in either teaching or research over time. But it wasn’t the first time the course received industry acclaim.  In August 2015, Hoffman, Chavis and Accounting Lecturer Glen Hatton received the 2015 Jim Bulloch Award for Innovations in Management Accounting Education from the American Accounting Association for the improved pass rate.

For more on the course, check out this story from CSUF News. For more on Mihaylo’s accounting programs, visit the Department of Accounting online or at SGMH 4313.

A group of five students and staff from University College of Northern Denmark (UCN) on their visit to Cal State Fullerton in Southern California in summer 2016.

Students from University College of Northern Denmark (UCN) pose at Cal State Fullerton’s College Park on June 28. From left to right: Mark Kleis, Jakob Hansen, Mads Bønnelykke and Kristian Bach. At far right is UCN faculty member Anders Bønnelykke Jensen.

Mihaylo College not only provides study abroad opportunities to its students, it also hosts international exchange students, who visit campus to get a firsthand look at the U.S. business climate from the perspective of the West Coast’s largest accredited business school. This summer, the college hosted students from University College of Northern Denmark (UCN).

“It is exciting to see everything we’ve read about,” said Mark Kleis, a UCN finance major who was among a group of Danish business exchange students visiting Cal State Fullerton earlier this summer. “You see California in movies, but in reality, it is different. My biggest surprise is the great distances in the Los Angeles area.”

Southern California and Denmark seem to be worlds apart. Denmark’s entire population of 5.6 million is nearly equal to the combined population of Orange and Riverside counties. The country is a leader in democratic socialism, providing its citizens with tax-supported college, health care, child care, medical leave and retirement pensions. A member of the European Union (EU), Denmark still uses its own currency – the krone. While less than the size of Southern California in land area, Greenland, the world’s largest island, is also part of the Danish Realm.

During their stay from June 19 to July 2, the exchange students heard from Mihaylo faculty with lectures on entrepreneurship, the American economy, financial management, entertainment management and marketing.  They got a firsthand look at the local economy with tours of the Kimberly-Clark Corp. in Fullerton, the Anaheim Packing District, Northgate Gonzalez Markets in Anaheim and Sonder LLC  in El Monte. They also visited top tourist attractions, including Santa Monica, Universal Studios, Griffith Park, Hollywood, Beverly Hills and Downtown Disney. They experienced a taste of home during their visit to a cultural fair at the Danish Lutheran Church and Cultural Center in Yorba Linda. Some students planned excursions of their own after the study tour ended, including trips to Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon.

The students were impressed by the opportunities afforded by the diversity of Cal State Fullerton. “I believe you can gain from the variety of cultures here, as there are a lot of students from all over the world,” said Jakob Hansen (finance).

For more on CSU Fullerton exchange programs, visit International Programs and Global Engagement online or at UH 244. For more on international business programs for Mihaylo students, contact the Center for International Business by calling 657-278-8264 or visit SGMH 3357A.

In honor of Independence Day this month, this blog post is the first in a weekly series throughout July examining opportunities in different sectors of America’s diverse economy.  

The Lincoln Memorial by night, with the Washington Monument and U.S. Capitol in the background.

Washington, D.C., may be the hub of public employment in the U.S., but positions are available in all 50 states and overseas. Image from Pixabay.

Including local and state governments and federal agencies, more than 20 million Americans work in the public sector in jobs ranging from law enforcement agents to museum curators. While hard-hit by the Great Recession and subsequent decline in local government revenues, there are still thousands of jobs available.

“Thanks for your service. What you do is important. It matters. You defend our country overseas, you deliver benefits to our troops who earned them when they come home, you guard our borders, you protect our civil rights, you help businesses grow and gain footholds in overseas markets. You protect the air we breathe, and the water our children drink, and you push the boundaries of science and space, and you guide hundreds of thousands of people each day through the glories of this country.” That’s the tribute President Barack Obama paid to the nation’s millions of government employees in his remarks on the reopening of the federal government following the government shutdown in 2013.

The U.S. public sector has come a long way from the handful of administrators who helped form today’s Cabinet-level agencies under the George Washington presidency. Today, more than 20 million Americans work in the public sector, but the majority do not work for the federal government. Instead, they are employed by the individual state governments or the nearly 40,000 municipal governments across the nation.

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A poster in support of Brexit - Britain's controversial withdrawal from the European Union - hangs in front of the offices of the Belfast Telegraph Newspaper in Northern Ireland.

A poster supporting Brexit from the European Union in Belfast, Northern Ireland. It notes that funds being spent on the EU could be used at home in the UK. Photo from Wikimedia Commons.

Few believed that they would actually go through with it. But last Thursday, British voters chose to become the first nation to leave the 28-member European Union in a referendum that many believe will have worldwide repercussions. The results are already visible on financial markets, with sharp declines on Friday and Monday.

Since the end of World War II, integration has transformed the once-warring nations of the European continent into the world’s largest free-trade area. In 1999, the European Union (EU) debuted the euro currency, which quickly became one of the world’s leading currencies and, many believed, a prototype for regional unions in other parts of the world.

Yet on June 23, voters in Britain dealt a severe blow to the EU and globalization generally, when nearly 52% of the electorate there voted to leave the union. The next day, stock markets around the world fell as much as 8%, while British Prime Minister David Cameron chose to resign rather than lead his country in an unprecedented exit from the regional bloc.

The Roots of Brexit

When the predecessor organizations of the EU formed in the 1950s, Britain was not part of the European unity movement. It was not until 1973 that Prime Minister Edward Heath took the UK into the union.

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A person sets a cup of coffee next to a laptop computer, journal and pen, and potted plant.Video conferencing platforms such as Skype offer the ability to speak with people around town or around the world from the comfort of your own home or office. It is a great tool for job or informational interviews. Here are seven tips on how to maximize virtual meetings as a career tool.

Video conferencing platforms such as Skype and Google Hangouts are great tools for job interviewing – they let you speak with professionals from around the world and often make interviews easier to arrange, since meetings can occur amid people’s everyday activities, wherever they are in the world. Yet users need to be aware of the unique concerns of virtual interviewing.

Following are seven tips to maximize your virtual meeting, based on information from and TheMuse.

  1. Pick a Good Location

An interview shouldn’t be held in your clutter-filled garage or your messy bedroom. Find a view that will exude confidence and professionalism and won’t distract from the interview. Make sure the area behind you is uncluttered and clean because this will be a clear focal point of the people interviewing you and you don’t want any distractions.  Choose a well-lit area where plenty of light hits both the wall behind you and your face, avoiding any shadows.  Definitely pick somewhere quiet to avoid any unwanted noise.

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