June 2023: Accomplishments of the CSULB community

Published June 22, 2023

Marcus Carline named May Employee of the Month    

Marcus Carline
Marcus Carline, May Employee of the Month

Marcus Carline ‘15, lead stage technician for the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music (BCCM), has been named Employee of the Month for May

Carline, who started working for the BCCM as a student assistant in 2013 while also pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Composition and Jazz Studies, oversees operations of the Gerald R. Daniel Recital Hall and trains student technicians in the various elements of running an event.  

“Marcus has been a wonderful employee,” said Jermie Arnold, music department chair, BCCM director and director of bands. “Marcus is very attentive to the needs of the conservatory, but is also always willing to help in other areas at the BCCM should we need his assistance.”  

2023 President’s Awards recognize outstanding service     

President Jane Close Conoley with Employees of the Year
President Jane Close Conoley, center, with the 2023 Employees of the Year

Four individual employees and the Basic Needs team from Student Affairs were recognized with President’s Awards for their outstanding service and contributions to the campus community. They are:  

  • Employee of the Year for Inclusive Excellence: Sovandany “Dany” Wang, Student Accounting Services, Division of Administration & Finance 
  • Employee of the Year for Innovation: Julie Ortiz, College of Liberal Arts Administration, Division of Academic Affairs 
  • Employee of the Year for Leadership: Tanisha Peoples, ATLAS Advising Center, Division of Academic Affairs 
  • Employee of the Year for Student Success: Anitha Johnson, Nursing, Division of Academic Affairs 
  • Team Achievement Award: Basic Needs team from Student Affairs: Hannah Nevarez, John Nguyen, Danielle Muñoz, Virginia Gray, Ph.D. and Carla Murillo 

Staff members who have worked at The Beach for 10 to 40 years were also recognized during the Staff Service Awards. 

Human Development professor wins Fulbright fellowship  

Lauren Heidbrink
Lauren Heidbrink

Lauren Heidbrink, Ph.D., an associate professor in Human Development, has been selected as a Fulbright U.S. scholar for 2023-24 to Guatemala. The Fulbright Scholar Award is a prestigious and competitive fellowship, presenting a multitude of opportunities for selected scholars to teach and conduct research abroad. 

Heidbrink will study community-based alternatives to migration among Indigenous youth, focusing on the municipality of Quetzaltenango and Maya-K’iche youths, she said. Her host institution in Guatemala will be Universidad Rafael Landívar. 

CSULB has another Fulbright scholar for 2023-24, Vasanthy Narayanaswami, Ph.D., a professor in the Chemistry and Biochemistry Department.

Engineering dean wins Breaking Barriers Award 

Dean Jinny Rhee
Dean Jinny Rhee

Dean Jinny Rhee, Ph.D., of the College of Engineering, is being honored by Long Beach-based nonprofit DemoChicks with a Breaking Barriers Award on Aug. 26. Rhee is being recognized because “she has broken through many barriers to achieve her level of success,” said Robin Thorne, the founder and chief of DemoChicks. 

“Her previous work with the MESA program, that engages educationally disadvantaged students and for the work she’s currently doing at CSULB” are additional reasons for the honor, Thorne said. 

Four others will be honored at the Hotel Maya in Long Beach, and scholarships will be provided to female students majoring in nontraditional career fields. DemoChicks’ mission is to elevate, empower and inspire girls to pursue nontraditional careers in STEM, construction and architecture.  

MSIS students earn first place in Data Hackathon    

Chakrapani Suresh and Ruchi Issac, MSIS program director Mohamed Abdelhamid, and Priyanka Katre
From left: Chakrapani Suresh, Ruchi Issac, MSIS program director Mohamed Abdelhamid, and Priyanka Katre

Three recent graduates of CSULB’s Master of Science in Information Systems (MSIS) program won first place and the coveted Best Insights Award at the sixth annual Data Science Hackathon, held in April at UC Irvine’s Merage School of Business. 

Priyanka Katre, Ruchi Isaac and Chakrapani Suresh formed a team with two students from UCI to study a set of raw data and transform it into a final “product” or useful insight. They took restaurant data from Yelp and discovered that some customer ratings on Yelp had anomalies or biased reviews that were contrary to popular consensus. This line of thinking set the team apart and led to the group’s award-winning presentation. 

MSIS program director Mohamed Abdelhamid was also present at the hackathon and awards ceremony. 

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