Celebrating Hundreds of Graduates at Convocation

The Kremen School of Education and Human Development celebrated their 2017-2018 Convocation and Hooding Ceremony at the Save Mart Center on Friday, May 18. The following candidates were recognized on stage: Liberal Studies, Wayfinders, T.A.R.G.E.T., Credential, Master’s Degree and Doctoral Degree.

Relive the moment by watching the full ceremony:

Alumni in the News

Many of our graduates were highlighted both at Fresno State and by media in the community. Below is a collection of the Kremen School alumni in the news.

2018 Kremen Dean’s Medalists – Kremen School News
medallion-blue- grad
2018 Dean’s Graduate Medalists Announced – Fresno State News


Fresno State dean’s medalist: Barba speaks English, español, français – Vida en el Valle
Fresno State Announces 2018 Undergraduate Deans’ Medalists – Fresno State News


Leonard Serrato Kremen Grad
Fresno State dean’s medalist: Serrato thanks family for his collegiate success – Vida en el Valle
Fresno State dean’s medalist: Macías’ graduate work will be her legacy – Vida en el Valle


Williams Syndrome Doesn’t Stop Paul From Working at Future Ford – Kremen School News

Convocation Photos

Williams Syndrome Doesn’t Stop Paul From Working at Future Ford

Paul Yong Jung, a Spring 2018 Wayfinders graduate, says working at Future Ford of Clovis is “great, you just have to be on time”.

Paul has recently completed the two-year Wayfinders program. This inclusive postsecondary program at Fresno State is for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to have the college experience while learning independent living, vocational and self-advocacy skills. Paul has Williams syndrome and during his time in the Wayfinders program he has had many work experiences, lived on campus with roommates, and learned many life skills.

A key component of the program is to develop students into competent employees. Monica Swanson, Vocational Placement Coordinator at Wayfinders, places students into volunteer opportunities with partners at Fresno State and in the community. Students are able to rotate to different work experiences every semester with the goal of providing each student with maximum work exposure in the two-year period. Monica says she tries to place each student with opportunities suited to their passions and capabilities.

Paul was placed at Future Ford of Clovis, a partner of Wayfinders for two years, and he immediately ‘clicked’ with the other employees.

“Someone in our organization had a child in the (Wayfinders) program and so Monica came over and introduced herself, and asked if we would be willing to participate. She brought Paul in and we interviewed him to make sure he would be comfortable doing the work. And then we clicked with Paul, everyone around here did and the rest is history. He is part of our family.”
– Tracy Gill, Service Director at Future Ford of Clovis

Paul was originally a volunteer through the partnership and Future Ford of Clovis later hired him on as an employee. He has been awarded the Employee of the Year in 2016 and was even featured in a promotional video.


“My responsibilities is being reliable, being on time, quality care, so I am very useful.” Paul will be moving back to his hometown in the Bay area later this summer. He has made great connections at Future Ford of Clovis and Tracy is planning on making recommendations to other Ford dealerships in the Bay area.

2018 Kremen Dean’s Medalists

Elizabeth_Barba_PlacenciaUndergraduate Dean’s Medalist

Elizabeth Barba Placencia
Undergraduate Degree Program: Liberal Studies

Fresno State is a transformational university and Elizabeth is the perfect embodiment of someone who is dedicated to transforming the life of others as she pursues her own continued education and career. Her parents immigrated from Mexico when Elizabeth was an infant to give their children a new life. Elizabeth is now a citizen but is proud of where she came from and what she is achieving as a first-generation university student. She is working hard so she can educate students who also have a chance to achieve great things.

Elizabeth has been involved at John Burroughs Elementary since January of 2016, assisting teachers, monitoring recess, helping at stations and assisting in the office. She received a certificate of recognition for her support and dedication to John Burroughs. For two academic years, Elizabeth was a member of Jumpstart Corp. She assisted at Kings Canyon Head Start with caring for children, tutored children ages 3-5 in kindergarten readiness, directed activities of small groups, and facilitated communication skills training. She was recognized as a future team leader by Jumpstart.

An even more important service related to preparation to be a teacher has been her work with our Office of Community Based Learning (CBL) Youth Technology Institute STEM program. She has been an instructor for STEM classes, planning her own lessons as well as providing take home STEM activities for students to do with their parents. CBL project director, Kasey Vang, wrote that in her work, Elizabeth has “demonstrated thoughtfulness, leadership skills, collaborative abilities, commitment to helping others, and a strong understanding of the struggles facing many of our students, particularly those students for whom English is a second language.

Elizabeth herself is tri-lingual, not only speaking English and Spanish, but also being fluent in French which she has studied for eight years. Her focus on STEM, her dedication to teaching, her linguistic ability, makes her the perfect candidate for our Fresno Teacher Residency program, our premiere educator preparation track. The program provides a stipend while allowing candidates to earn both their teaching credential and master’s degree while preparing them for a three-year commitment to teach in Fresno Unified School District. We are confident she will succeed there as she has succeeded at the University so far.

Christina_MaciasGraduate Dean’s Medalist

Christina Macias
Graduate Degree Program: Master of Arts in Education with an option in Early Childhood Education

Christina first graduated from Fresno State in Biology, followed by ten years a biologist for the state of California. She left that position and created a private preschool with a commitment to provide responsive, relationship­ based care to very young children and began an intensive inquiry into child development, attachment, and family cultures while working to provide the children in her care with an environment supporting developmentally appropriate experiences. In 2010, her center was awarded accreditation through the National Association of Family Child Care. Following this attainment, she attended training through West-Ed and the CA Department of Education. This motivated to make a new, significant commitment to her own education.

In 2015, Christiana enrolled in the Kremen School’s Master of Arts in Education, Early Childhood Education program. What began learning motivated her to a career in education and advocacy. To her, every assignment and discussion was an experience that became an act of advocacy for children and their learning communities. One assignment, a review of the book Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis, resulted in a publication in the Journal of Character Education in 2017.

Due to her background and interest in science and with the support of her advisor, Dr. Cathy Yun, Christina proposed a demonstration garden that would be used as a resources for P-12 students and the teacher candidates we prepare. This project, planned for construction on our campus will serve as an interdisciplinary research model aimed at addressing science experiences, educator preparation, and food insecurities on campus and in our community. The project has been met with great enthusiasm by the community, potential donors, educators, Kremen faculty, and other campus leaders. It obtained an award from the Graduate Net Initiative to help support the project.

While at Fresno State, Christina has participated in two major research studies. One is with a Math Coherence project by Northwestern and Vanderbilt Universities. Her role has been data collection and interviews. The second is working for the Next Generation Educators Initiative, working for this project as a candidate coach, reviewing literature, and helping design the CREATe Rubric and training candidates on its use.

For the next year following graduation, Christina will continue to work with Early Childhood teacher candidates. Her education plans include applying for a Ph.D. program.

Speaking of her, Dr. Cathy Yun said, “Christina is driven by her equity-based perspective and her conviction that ALL children deserve engaging science education beginning in early childhood. Her dedication to promoting quality early childhood education in the Fresno community compels her to engage in work that promotes transformative change.”

A Big Accomplishment for Our Student Assistants

The Student Assistants at the Kremen School of Education and Human Development are a vibrant piece of the day-to-day tasks at the school. They not only perform their job responsibilities but they also gain individual relationships with the faculty, staff and leadership at the school. This year, we have four Student Assistants graduating with a bachelor’s degree. We are so proud of their accomplishments and the next steps in their lives and careers.

Savannah May CorbinSavannah May Corbin

Savannah has worked as a Student Assistant for the Doctoral Program of Educational Leadership since her second semester of her freshman year. She is graduating with a B.A. in Psychology and a minor in Chemistry. Savannah has been a part of Chem Club and is an EOP student as well! With her fun and spunky attitude she will definitely be a face to miss around the education building!

Miranda DoradoMiranda Dorado

Miranda is a Student Assistant for the Curriculum and Instruction and LEBSE departments. She assists the professors with projects and assists with the office flow – phone calls, mail, administrative tasks. She has been a huge part of the C&I and LEBSE department office for the past 7 semesters.
Miranda is graduating with a B.S. in Business Administration with an emphasis in Accountancy. During her college experience she was involved in Beta Alpha Psi, an honors accounting organization. After graduation she is moving to San Fransisco for an internship at an accounting firm.

Sara RimaSara Rima

Sara has been a Student Assistant in the Dean’s Office at the Kremen School for 7 semesters. She diligently assists with processing orders for the Teachers Honor Wall, schedules conference rooms for the faculty and staff and directs phone calls as needed.
Sara is graduating with a B.S. in Food and Nutritional Sciences with an emphasis in Dietetics and Food Administration. Throughout her degree she worked on an Abriendo Caminos research project that lasted from Spring of 2015 to Fall of 2017. This research project looked at the effects of a wellness program on the health of Hispanic Families. Sara also worked on a Bulldogs in the Kitchen program that she coordinated for the Dietetics department teaching Fresno State Athletes how to cook. Sara is planning to start graduate school in September and has been accepted to Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo for the Dietetic Internship program.

Rubby Saldivar-GutierrezRubby Saldivar-Gutierrez

Rubby is also a Student Assistant in the Dean’s Office at the Kremen School and has been working here for the past 8 semesters. She assists the Dean and Associate Dean with projects, helps coordinate Kremen School events, and assists with other administrative tasks.
She will be graduating with a B.S. in Criminology with an emphasis in Law Enforcement. Starting in the Fall, Rubby will be starting graduate school at Fresno State, studying Marriage, Family and Child Counseling.

2017 Top Dog Alumni Award Gala

The Top Dog Alumni Awards Gala was held on October 13, 2017. The Gala recognizes some of the University’s most accomplished graduates with the highest honor presented by the Fresno State Alumni Association. Dr. Janet Young was recognized as the Kremen School of Education and Human Development’s 2017 Top Dog.

“Because of Fresno State, I got to have the most amazing career.” – Janet Young.

Janet Young received her bachelor’s and master’s from Fresno State, which has helped her hold a 40-year career with the Clovis Unified School District where she held positions as learning director, principal, director of school and community relations, associate superintendent of human resources and superintendent.

Read more about Janet’s journey here.

2016 Kremen Noted Alumni Dinner

On March 17th we honored the following Alumni at our annual Noted Alumni Dinner.

  • Dr. Robert Aguilar, Retired Superintendent and Educator ,Delano Union School District
  • Kim Mecum, Chief Academic Officer, Fresno Unified School District
  • Dr. Pauline Sahakian, Director, University of California, Merced Writing Project
  • Richard Kinney, Science Teacher, Buchanan High School Clovis Unified School District

It was a great event, sponsored by EECU!  Congratulations to all our honorees!

2015 Top Dog Alumni Award Gala

Fresno State’s TOP DOG Alumni Award Gala took place on October 9th, and Kremen was in the house. The award gala is Fresno State Alumni Association’s signature event where alumni are honored for accomplishments in their fields and commitment to service in the community. Fresno State recognizes these alumni who have given outstanding service to the school and the Fresno State Alumni Association.

Congratulations to TOP DOG’S

Armen Bacon, TOP DOG Distinguished Award
Dr. Robert Monke, TOP DOG Service Award
Dr. Robert Aguilar, TOP DOG Kremen-Outstanding Award


Thank you for all you’ve done!