January 2024: Accomplishments of the CSULB community
Sergio Vega named December Employee of the Month
Sergio Vega, a property coordinator in the Property Management Office, has been named Employee of the Month for December.
As property coordinator, Vega has established and maintained professional relationships with campus customers and has identified and inventoried specialized equipment that various departments purchase. A big part of his initial tasks was to overhaul outdated and tedious processes; in doing so, he has rebuilt the Property Management’s Office reputation within the CSULB community.
Maureen O’Brien, the university controller in the Controller’s Office, said, “My staff and I have been working with Sergio for several years now and his work product, professionalism, and cooperation have always been of the highest quality. The work that we share with Sergio demands great perseverance and attention to detail, both of which he excels at. Also, he can be counted on to fully understand and document the property items he must record in the software we share.”
Vega started at The Beach as a student assistant in Mail Services while he worked on a computer science undergraduate degree. He left CSULB, but later returned as a staff member in Receiving and Mail Services in 2014. In 2017, he transitioned to his current position.
CNSM professors win National Science Foundation Career Awards
Professors Andrea Balbas and Alex Klotz, of the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, have each recently won Career Awards from the National Science Foundation. The Career Awards are among the most prestigious offered by NSF, given to those “who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to lead advances in the mission of their department or organization.”
Balbas, an assistant professor in earth science, is investigating the tectono-magmatic response to a transitioning plate boundary in the California Borderlands. Klotz, an assistant professor in physics and astronomy, focuses his research on experimental and computational studies of biomolecular topology – the 3D architecture of molecules produced by living organisms.
The award is also intended to provide an early career foundation for integrating research and education. As METRIC mentors, these CNSM professors are both experienced in doing just this, working one-on-one with underrepresented students to help them in conducting research and presenting it at conferences. Mentors also provide guidance on graduate school applications and are an important resource in finding student internships.
Art professor wins statewide award
The CAEA Professional Educators Awards recognize individuals within the membership who have achieved the highest level of professionalism in the field of art education.
Trimble obtained a Bachelor of Fine Arts and master’s degree from CSULB’s College of the Arts, and a doctorate from the College of Education. He currently serves as program head for art education at The Beach and teaches cross-cultural and community-based practices and contemporary issues in art education.
Higher-ed publication selects CSULB as one of ‘most promising place to work’
Diverse: Issues in Higher Education, a biweekly higher-education news magazine, has named Cal State Long Beach as one of 2024’s “Most Promising Places to Work in Student Affairs.”
The result is based on a fall 2023 survey assessing CSULB’s focus on workplace diversity, staffing practices and work environment. The Beach rose to the top in categories such as family friendliness, salary/benefits and professional development opportunities. A full list of the recognized institutions will be published by Diverse in the coming weeks.
The Beach will be recognized at a March 19 reception during the ACPA24 Convention in Chicago.
Journalism student creates mini documentary about Shark Lab
Ava Domenichelli, a fourth-year journalism student, recently completed a mini-documentary on the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics’ Shark Lab, where she has been serving as a public relations/media intern for nearly a year.
The 15 1/2-minute documentary, titled “Shivers in the Shadows,” provides a history of the 58-year-old Shark Lab, and aims to dispel the common perception of sharks as dangerous, ravenous monsters lurking in the deep, dark oceans. Domenichelli interviewed (and was mentored by) Chris Lowe, a CNSM professor and director of the Shark Lab, as well as several other instructors, researchers and students from the lab. She wrote, directed, produced and voiced the doc, which is available on YouTube.
Domenichelli, who plans to graduate in May, also recently won a third-place award in the Associated College Press’ broadcast competition for a Beach TV news segment on residents of Israel fleeing war in their home country and arriving at LAX.