By VICTORIA CISNEROS, Student Writer

With a strong background in dairy cattle and agricultural business, Stan and Shelly Grosz (1982) pictured lifelong careers in agriculture but instead found themselves immersed in photography and running one of Fresno’s most successful small businesses — Horn Photo.

Stan and Shelly were both part of the Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology; Stan graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Dairy Science and Shelly with a bachelor’s degree in Ag Business. …


By VICTORIA CISNEROS, Student Writer

Basilwood Farm, nestled in the rural foothills along CA highway 168, is where alumna Jill Spruance (2005) and her family of Fresno State alumni create handmade soap infused with a very special ingredient — fresh goats’ milk.

Jill began her collegiate journey at Fresno State in 1977 but took some time away from her studies soon after getting married. Years later, she returned, but stepped away once more after having kids and homeschooling them for many years. …


By VICTORIA CISNEROS, Student Writer

With just over 600 student donors, Fresno State’s 2019 graduating class raised a total of $15,030.20 that will benefit continued student success. This initial gift will serve as a strong, philanthropic foundation as these graduates transition from selfless students to valued alumni.

The senior giving program started in 2017 and raised $5,662 from 274 student donors. Interest in student philanthropy has greatly increased since then, nearly tripling the total amount of money raised and doubling the number of donors.

“This is students helping students. These graduates are leaving a legacy that will benefit future generations…


(left to right) Kyle Martin, Skylar Lopez, Mario Martinez, Hailee Rincon, David Cuevas, and Mariah Calvert.

By VICTORIA CISNEROS, Student writer

This family of Bulldogs had no idea they would all eventually enroll at Fresno State, let alone graduate together in the spring of 2019.

Hailee Rincon and Kyle Martin are brother and sister who are first cousins to Skylar Lopez. Hailee, Kyle, and Skylar are second cousins to Mariah Calvert, and Mario Martinez and David Cuevas are Hailee and Mariah’s significant others, who have both been part of the family for years now.

Regardless of the labels, these Bulldogs are family and are excited to graduate together this May. While Kyle is still a sophomore…


By VICTORIA CISNEROS, Student Writer

Since returning to college after 25 years, Yvonne Damian (2019) has achieved more than she ever thought possible. This May, she will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Food and Nutritional Sciences and become the first person in her family to earn a four-year degree.

Yvonne graduated from high school in 1990 and immediately enrolled at Reedley College. As a teen, her passions lied elsewhere, and she eventually left Reedley for a full time job. …


By VICTORIA CISNEROS, Student Writer

Jordan Paulk (2019) is a senior viticulture student, who chose Fresno State for its unique combination of rigorous academics and hands-on learning. With five years of Central Valley dirt on his boots and a bachelor’s degree in hand, Jordan will be returning home to Temecula, Calif. to work the family winery.

Jordan committed to Fresno State having never seen the campus, but knew that when it came to all things wine, it was the right place to be. …


By VICTORIA CISNEROS, Student Writer

You may know Chris Healy (2004) of The Longhairs from his appearance on ABC’s “Shark Tank” or from his viral hair whipping video during a 2018 Fresno State home football game, but Chris’ latest venture actually involves him chopping off his iconic golden locks.

Chris and his business partner Lindsay Barto started their company, The Longhairs, in 2014 as a way of creating a community among men with long hair and selling Hair Ties for Guys. …


By VICTORIA CISNEROS, Student Writer

Sherri Mell’s (1980) life-long passion for rodeo goes beyond competition; she loves rodeo because of how it helps to change lives. Today, she runs her own therapeutic riding facility, Riding Opportunities Promoting Exceptional Riders (R.O.P.E.R.), and hopes to lead her athletes to victory in the 2019 Special Olympics World Games as Team USA’s Equestrian Head Coach.

Sherri learned to ride before she learned to walk and knew that rodeo would always be a part of her life. …


By MARISA MATA, Student Writer

In her recently published memoir, Quite Mad, Sarah Fawn Montgomery (2010) uses her power as a storyteller to start a conversation about mental illness, something very prevalent yet highly stigmatized in America.

Sarah Fawn Montgomery

Montgomery, an Assistant Professor at Bridgewater State University, said she has always been a writer, but didn’t start writing seriously until joining Fresno State’s MFA program. “I began the program believing writing was a hobby I could develop, but I left understanding it could be a highly professionalized career.”

Since earning her MFA, Montgomery has published a slew of both poetry and nonfiction…


Leslie Rau, Interior Designer, Darden Architects, Inc.

By VICTORIA CISNEROS, Student Writer

Like many college freshmen, Leslie Rau’s (2002) vision of the future was clouded and hazy, but after taking her first design class and loving it, her uncertainty began to fade. Today, Leslie is in her eighteenth year with Darden Architects, Inc., where she works as an Interior Designer among a talented team of Fresno State alums.

Fresno State Alumni

Stories celebrating Bulldog alumni.

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