Santa Clara University

FYI - Faculty and Staff Newsletter

fyi - News for the Campus Community

fyi is the official faculty-staff newsletter for the Santa Clara University community. It is designed to keep faculty and staff informed about campus news and information. It is compiled, written and published by the Office of Marketing and Communications.

  •  New Law Leader

    The former dean of the University of Dayton law school and an expert on mediation, dispute resolution, and reform of law-school education has been chosen to be the next dean of Santa Clara University School of Law.

    Lisa Kloppenberg will be appointed to a five-year term starting July 1, 2013.

    “It is with great enthusiasm that we welcome Lisa Kloppenberg to Santa Clara University, and look forward to working with her to build upon the proven strengths of our law school,” said Michael Engh, S.J., president of Santa Clara University. “Her understanding of current-day challenges to legal education, and her commitment to Jesuit Catholic ideals of educating the ‘whole person’ make her a wonderful fit for SCU.”

    For 10 years, Kloppenberg served as dean of the law school at the University of Dayton, the largest private university in Ohio and one of the 10 largest Catholic universities in the country. As the first female law dean in Ohio, she helped oversee the law school’s evolution to a higher-profile, better-endowed program with a nationally recognized two-year accelerated degree option and a focus on professional preparation.

    During her tenure, UD Law enhanced the diversity of its student body and faculty, improved faculty productivity, increased endowed scholarships by 34 percent, strengthened its program in law and technology, and added an LL.M. degree and a master’s degree for non-lawyers. She also oversaw the school’s renewed emphasis on its Catholic identity through enhanced community service and pro bono legal hours, as well as a “Lawyer as Problem Solver” program, which attracted recognition from the Carnegie Foundation.

    “Lisa Kloppenberg brings a wealth of experience and has a deep affinity to the distinctive values of our law school,” said Santa Clara University Provost Dennis Jacobs. “Having practiced law herself, she forges innovative approaches to legal education, champions the invaluable experience students gain in legal clinics and externships, and promotes rigorous academic scholarship to advance the legal profession.”

    Kloppenberg takes over from SCU’s current dean, Donald Polden, who is stepping down after his second successful five-year term ends this year. Polden will be a visiting legal scholar at the Center for Creative Leadership for a year before returning full-time to the classroom at Santa Clara University.

    At UD, Kloppenberg was known as a champion of curricular reform, implementing an accelerated five-semester law degree, the first in the nation, in 2005. She joined colleagues to successfully pursue co-curricular projects between the engineering, business, arts and sciences, and law schools, including hiring UD’s first jointly appointed faculty member in arts and sciences and law. She also helped develop conflict resolution trainings on campus.

    Programs implemented or strengthened while she was dean have won national acclaim: the legal writing program was ranked in the top 20 by U.S. News & World Report, and a curriculum that included a track in appropriate dispute resolution won an award for excellence from the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution. In 2007, UD Law was among only a handful of schools invited to examine how U.S. law schools prepare students for the profession, and make recommendations for reform to the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

    “I am incredibly excited about the opportunities at Santa Clara University School of Law,” said Kloppenberg. “I am impressed by the University’s Jesuit and justice-centered values; its deep connections with Silicon Valley and the world; and the amazing faculty, staff, alumni, and students I am honored to be joining.”

    Kloppenberg has published extensively in her field of dispute resolution, including authoring or co-authoring two books and dozens of articles and essays. Prior to assuming the deanship at Dayton in 2001, Kloppenberg had taught in the law school at the University of Oregon (1992–2001), practiced law at Kaye, Scholer, Fierman, Hays and Handler in Washington, D.C., (1988–92), and clerked for the Honorable Dorothy Wright Nelson, a federal appellate judge (1987–88).

    Kloppenberg has chaired or served on numerous national committees—many focused on legal curricular or professional-standards reform—of the American Bar Association, the Association of American Law Schools, and the Law School Admissions Council. She is a judge for the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution Annual Award.
    She received her J.D. from the University of Southern California Law Center (now USC Gould School of Law) and her bachelor’s degree in English and journalism from USC, with an undergraduate honors diploma from the University of Kent (Canterbury, England).

    A native of southern California, Kloppenberg will move to the Bay Area with her husband Mark Zunich, a native of the East Bay who practices law. They have three children, Nick, Tim, and Kellen. She looks forward to pursuing her love of the outdoors and being closer to family and friends in California.

  •  Ready for Radiant House

    The fences are up, the steel is on its way, and the bamboo construction beams are taking shape—the 2013 SCU Solar Decathlon team is ready to break ground on the Radiant House. The students will build the solar powered home on campus before hauling the house to Irvine in October for the first Solar Decathlon held in California. The biennial competition attracts teams from some of the top engineering schools in the world, including Stanford University and the California Institute of Technology.

    “This is a really exciting time in the competition,” says Beth Avon, who is in charge of interiors for the team. “We’ve spent more than a year getting this project down on paper and now we’ll spend the next several months making it a reality.”

    The students are working in more than a dozen sub-teams, ranging from plumbing to architecture to furniture. This is one of the first homes in the country to use bamboo as part of the infrastructure and not just for its aesthetic value, according to Project Manager Jake Gallau, ’13. As a grass, bamboo is more sustainable than conventional materials because it grows faster than trees.

    “We want this house to do more than win the competition,” says civil engineering major Meyling Leon ’13. “We want to make a real impact on the world by thinking outside the box. By using bamboo, we’re sending the message that the future of construction will think about sustainability when choosing materials.”

    The team has two ethicists dedicated to ensuring the team considers its impact on the environment. The students weigh the environmental records of their donors, evaluate products for use in the home, and visit elementary schools to teach a new generation about alternative energy.

    “We’re really helping keep the team accountable to the impact this house will have on the environment,” says team ethicist Allie Sibole. “We’re not only exceeding the expectations needed to win this competition; we’re setting new standards.”

    Another point of innovation is the control systems of the house. The team is hoping to adapt control of lighting and room temperature in an app the public can use in their own homes. The average homeowner would need to invest in some of the products the team is using, but it’s one  way the team is making their hard work accessible, and is considering the impact of Radiant House beyond the parameters of the competition. They will release more details on the app in the months ahead.

    Check out a video of some of the students & Faculty Advisor James Reites, S.J. completing forklift training here.

    The SCU community is invited to the Solar Decathlon Groundbreaking on Thursday, April 25, 2013 from noon to 2 p.m. The ceremony will be held at the Radiant House construction site between Market St. and Sobrato Hall. Lunch is provided.



  •  World Pieces

    Santa Clara University music professor and acclaimed pianist Teresa McCollough is working on a project that will take listeners on an emotional and political trek across the world. 

    The musical journey started in 2007 with a gift from Emmy-award-winning composer Steve Heitzeg. He wanted to thank McCollough for bringing his composition “Sandhill Crane (Migration Variations)” to international acclaim 20 years ago, so he created a one-of-a-kind, social-justice-driven composition specifically for McCollough to perform. 

    This composition, “World Piece,” is a representation of each of the 192 countries in the United Nations. The songs make a political or environmental statement for each country, which McCollough improvises in performance, guided by Heitzeg’s artistically drawn scores.

    Over the course of three years McCollough worked with a sound engineer to improvise each piece, starting with the scores that have actual chords and notes and progressing to the ones that are more visual, such as Togo—represented as a drawing of a yellow butterfly. With some scores, Greece for example, Heitzeg gave McCollough music notes to play as well as specific directions to play the notes three times and “think of turquoise seas and lemon trees.”

    The abstract nature of many of the scores challenged McCollough because she admits to not being a strong improviser at the time she was given the project. She looked to

    travel guides for inspiration. Often political issues would affect how she played a piece. At the time McCollough recorded Sierra Leone there were reports about diamond trade and child soldiers. McCollough used a ratchet to make harsh, violent sounds to represent these atrocities.

    “As an improviser you have to be open to everything, you can’t think there’s a right thing or a wrong thing,” said McCollough. “I could try to do something similar now, but that’s the cool thing about improv, I could never do the same thing twice.”

    Each country’s score is no longer than a minute and is presented on the World Piece Music Channel on YouTube. This channel was launched on United Nations Day in October 2010.

    “YouTube is great because you can reach so many more people who can come and go,” said McCollough.

    The scores and drawings evoke the spirit of each country as seen through the eyes of Heitzeg, who makes social or environmental statements within each piece. McCollough explains that this is what makes “World Piece” unable to lend itself to concert performance; Listening to 192 social statements would be overwhelming to an audience. McCollough has only played the pieces in concert as brief interludes between other parts of the compositions and with the scores projected on a screen behind her.

    SCU played an important role in producing “World Piece,” helping fund McCollough’s recording sessions and proving to be very supportive of new music.

    “The social justice platform of this University gives [‘World Piece’] a life of it’s own,” said McCollough. “It really connects well with the mission of the University.”

    Despite the project being three years old, it continues to evolve and lead to new artistic ventures. McCollough’s dream is to put Heitzeg’s scores in a gallery space like the de Saisset and have people listen to the installation using their smart phones while walking between countries. There is also talk about having the project displayed in the U.N. lobby.

    Heitzeg and McCollough have communicated for years and, despite only meeting in-person once, continue to sustain a collaborative artistic relationship. This year Heitzeg sent McCollough another set of solo piano compositions. These 13 scores will honor individuals who have worked for peace, human rights, and nonviolence, and will premiere sometime in the next year.

    Heitzeg lives in Minnesota with his wife and daughter. He is a strong advocate for the “peaceful existence of all species through music.” He has written more than 100 eco-scores that honor nature and promote peace.  have developed a strong artistic relationship.

    “It has been an absolute pleasure and a gift in my life to have,” said McCollough.


  •  Sprinksgiving

    One SCU student takes off on an immersion trip to El Salvador; another heads to the gym to practice for a championship volleyball tournament; a third student travels to Rome for a semester of study. The activities may be unrelated, but each of the students has something in common: a benefactor whose financial assistance makes it possible to participate in enriching, sometimes life-changing, college experiences.

    Katherine Nicholson ’10, assistant director of student and young alumni giving in SCU’s Development Office, said 83 percent of SCU students receive some form of financial aid during their four years at the University. And considering the many extracurricular activities supported by donations, such as immersion trips, club sports, and study abroad programs, “there are even more students touched each year by support from alumni and friends of the University.

    Up until now, she noted, there hasn’t been a way to say thank you. But that will change on Wednesday, April 24, with the launch of “Sprinksgiving,” a day of gratitude planned by the Development Office and the SCU Philanthropy Committee.

    “We have a whole family of Santa Clara University Broncos who support our students in lots of different ways,” explained Nicholson. “We wanted to create a two-fold event that raises awareness about available support, while giving students a chance to show their appreciation.”

    Sprinksgiving, which relates to Thanksgiving in spring, takes place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in front of the main library. Here, students may write a note and sign a giant thank-you card that will be shared with donors via email and social media. To help set the holiday mood, free turkey sandwiches will be provided.

    Last year, more than 20 percent of SCU alumni donated to the Santa Clara Fund, which funnels all contributions to current undergraduates. Small gifts alone—of $100 or less—added up to nearly $800,000. The fund supports scholarships, academic programs, international study and immersion programs, and student initiatives.

    “We’re interested in educating the student body about the impact that the larger Santa Clara family has on their education and time on campus,” said Nicholson. “Donors support not only academics through scholarships, but they help to make a student’s time on campus well-rounded and great.”

  •  Distinguished Commencement Speakers

    Santa Clara University announced the speakers for the 2013 graduate and undergraduate commencement ceremonies, June 14 and 15.

    Undergraduate Commencement

    Leon Panetta, the former U.S. Secretary of Defense and a 1960 magna cum laude political science major and 1963 graduate of Santa Clara University’s School of Law, will address the University’s graduating seniors and their family and friends, June 15 at 8:30 a.m. at Buck Shaw Stadium. His wife Sylvia Panetta, co-director of the Panetta Institute for Public Policy in Monterey, Calif., will receive an honorary degree as well.

    “Sylvia and I are honored to be recognized by Santa Clara University. Santa Clara has a special place in our hearts. It’s where we first met; it is where I learned many of the core values that have guided me from the earliest days of my career,” said Panetta. Read more here.

    Graduate Commencement

    An award-winning engineering educator and the first woman president of the University of the Pacific will address Santa Clara University’s graduate students at their 2013 commencement ceremony on Friday, June 14.

    The commencement will take place at 7:30 p.m. in the University’s Leavey Events Center.

    Pamela A. Eibeck has been president of University of the Pacific for four years, overseeing its expansion beyond its Stockton, Calif. campus to campuses in Sacramento and San Francisco.

    In attendance at the commencement will be about 600 students receiving advanced degrees from the College of Arts and Sciences’ Pastoral Ministries program, the School of Engineering, the Leavey School of Business, and the School of Education and Counseling Psychology. Read more here.

    Honorary Degrees

    At the undergraduate ceremony, honorary degrees will be awarded to Leon and Sylvia Panetta; Robert Mathewson, S.J.; James Houghton '81; and Steven '60 and Patricia Schott. At the graduate ceremony, Pamela A. Eibeck will receive an honorary degree.


  •  Fashion Sense and Sensibility

    At Santa Clara University, sustainability is always in style. For some visual proof of that, take a look at what’s coming down the runway at the third annual Eco-Fashion Show on Thursday, April 25.

    Hosted by the University’s Office of Sustainability in partnership with the de Saisset Museum, the show features original designs by students and alumni who use only recycled materials for their creations. Highlights of past shows have included clothing made of newspapers, pop tops from aluminum cans, plastic bags and even old VCR film.

    “This year, the focus will be on really making it wearable,” explained Lindsey Cromwell Kalkbrenner, director of the Office of Sustainability. “Students can use elements of ‘trash’ in interesting ways, but we’d like to see designs that re-purpose fabrics for everyday wear.”

    Fashion show participants should not spend any money on their handiwork, she said. “The idea is to demonstrate how to extend the life of clothing by creating outfits from previously used material.” For example, a student designer could take an old piece of clothing and give it an attractive, stylish update. Or, a designer could stitch up something new using fabric scraps from the SCU costume shop at no cost.

    “The costume shop is an amazing resource for us,” noted Michelle Tang, a senior Environmental Science major who launched the fashion show while serving as the SCU Green Club president in her sophomore year. For that first show, Tang enlisted the help of Joanne Martin, lecturer and costume shop supervisor with the Department of Theatre and Dance, who held a one-hour workshop to teach fashion show participants basic sewing and design skills.

    The workshops have continued each year, and Tang has plans to build on the idea. “We will be having an extended designer workshop series, where we will be covering more topics over a three-week period so that our designers are truly learning more about sewing,” she explained. The longer sessions will help them “develop skills that they can take with them after they are done with the show.”

    For the first time, the Eco-Fashion Show will be held at the de Saisset in conjunction with the museum’s College Night. And, this year, planners hope the audience will take away useful pieces of information about how clothes are made and the impacts of the fashion industry on sustainability.

    “We’ll be delivering those messages in different ways during the evening,” said Cromwell Kalkbrenner. “For instance, after the show the models will mingle with guests and explain their designs; it’s a great way to interact with and reach different segments of the campus population.”

    The tone, she stressed, will be in keeping with the fun and entertaining aspects of the event. “We simply want to help people understand that it’s OK to go shopping and buy new clothes, but you don’t have to get sucked into a cycle of consumerism. You can shop for locally made clothing that’s created to last; if you buy things you’re in love with, you can wear them for a long time.”

    Swap for Good
    Along with the fashion show, another April event also promotes the idea of giving new life to old clothes. Swap for Good is a nationwide clothing collection and exchange project that benefits community organizations and provides a fun shopping experience for the SCU community. The Office of Sustainability and Santa Clara Community Action Program are sponsoring the local event.

    During the week of April 15, anyone with unwanted, usable clothing (and other items, such as shoes, children’s books, and toys) can drop donations in bins around campus and in RLC lobbies. “It’s a good opportunity for kids to get a jump on cleaning their closets before they move out in June,” said Cromwell Kalkbrenner. “Also, last year, SCU coaches cleared out their storage lockers and lots of local schools benefited from some nice sports equipment.”

    The items with high community value—like sports equipment, children’s clothing, prom dresses, and socks for the homeless—are sent directly to agencies supporting those in need. Everything else is sorted and put on display in the Swap for Good “store,” located in the Benson Parlors. On Monday, April 22, and Tuesday, April 23, students, staff, faculty, and community members are invited to shop for “new to you” treasures.

    Shopping hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday and from 2 to 9 p.m. on Tuesday. Also featured at the Swap for Good event will be an Eco-Art Show with works using recycled materials and created by SCU students.

  •  Explore Forge Garden

    Find out what SCU's organic garden has to offer in a special happy hour event.

    Enjoy some of the best wine in the South Bay while learning about one of Santa Clara University’s many contributions to preserving the beauty and history of our community. The Forge Garden Showcase on April 12 will feature wine from Testarossa Winery and give faculty and staff a chance to explore Forge Garden. The half-acre organic garden has been active since 2009 and features a heritage orchard with fruit and nut trees that have historically grown in Santa Clara Valley.

    “There are many ways SCU staff and faculty can use the garden both personally and professionally,” said new garden manager Rose Madden. “We hope everyone will come out and enjoy the wine, spring sunshine, and learn more about how the garden can benefit them.”

    The Forge Garden is also home to the 2007 Solar Decathlon house, which won third place in the international competition for energy-efficient building. Last May crews moved the house to the new location, where the home serves as an office for Madden, and provides volunteers with a sink and restroom. It has also been the setting for movie nights and other community-building events. Students on the 2013 Solar Decathlon team will be at the showcase to give tours of the home and talk about the Radiant House, SCU’s entry into this year’s Solar Decathlon.

    “It makes the garden feel more like a place people can be comfortable,” said  Lindsey Cromwell Kalkbrenner, director of the University’s Office of Sustainability.  “It’s nice to be able to keep that history on campus and keep it accessible.”

    The garden, located one block from Lucas Hall at the corner of Benton and Sherman Streets, is meant to foster a culture of sustainability. Classes can meet there—whether it’s a modern dance class that is learning to “express some of the sensory experience” at the garden or a biology class doing research on how leaves biodegrade, Kalkbrenner said.

    Student organizations also use the garden for community building: having a volunteer day, for example, where their members can plant, weed, or turn compost. The garden is also open to the broader community for garden tending on Mondays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 1 to 5 p.m.

    The Forge Garden Showcase is a private event for SCU employees on April 12 from 4 to 6 p.m. Please RSVP at:

  •  The Big Q

    The Markkula Center for Applied Ethics prompts students to ask and answer life's big questions.

    Want the answer? Look it up.

    Students in classrooms everywhere hear that classic refrain and tap into a host of resources at their fingertips. But what if the burning question is non-academic and its answer can only be found in the murky depths of the “book of life?”

    According to Miriam Schulman, communications director at SCU's Markkula Center for Applied Ethics, students are confronted every day with ethical dilemmas that may not come with ready, clear-cut solutions. “Roommate concerns, controlled substances, academic integrity—these are among topics that college kids across the country face all the time,” she explained.

    For such tricky life issues, there are no handy study guides to prompt the right response. But, there is a place to “look it up.” The Big Q, a blog hosted by the ethics center, offers an online dialogue about the big questions college students regularly deal with. It’s open to undergraduates from all over the country, and to adults interested in student life. Here, participants can read about familiar situations, weigh in with an opinion, review comments from others, and engage in a virtual conversation.

    “The Big Q project is a way to help students think in advance—maybe before a certain situation comes up—about how they’d want to behave and what the best decisions are that they can make,” said Schulman.

    Every week, a new scenario involving an ethical dilemma is posted on the blog. It can be about anything from alcohol and drugs to jobs and money to sex and relationships.

    At the end of every narrative, questions are asked: Your friend drank too much and passed out; should you call the EMTs? Someone on your dorm floor put up a poster you find offensive; do you confront her? How do you end a “friends with benefits” situation? How do you deal with a group member not doing his share of the work? Should you give money to a homeless person?

    Blog readers indicate if they like a question’s response and the most liked are finalists in The Big Q contest. A winning response is selected by a panel of student interns and staff at the center, and the writer receives a $100 gift certificate.

    According to Schulman, the number of responses for any given scenario varies.

    “It really depends on whether or not people connect with the issue,” she said.

    The Ethics Center launched the Big Q project about two years ago and since then, nearly 117,000 people have viewed the site. Among those are college students from throughout California—San Jose State, USC, Berkeley, UC Irvine—and in schools around the country, such as University of Pennsylvania, Sarah Lawrence, University of Virginia, Princeton, and Columbia.

    Thus far, some 60 cases have been aired on the site. The scenarios come from students themselves and from interns and staff at the center. Schulman said some of the hypothetical situations may be inspired by news stories and court cases; others may be suggested by SCU teachers who want to see a certain topic addressed.

    “We also work with co-curricular groups on campus,” she explained. “For example, Big Q questions sometimes coincide with Wellness Center programs; questions on academic integrity fit into things the orientation people are doing. One question on homelessness coincided with SCU’s Homeless Awareness Week.”

    Some professors, especially those teaching communication classes, also use Big Q cases for classroom projects, Schulman noted, which helps to boost page views. In an effort to attract even more readers, the center sponsors outreach events and maintains an active social media presence.

    Chloe Wilson is a senior sociology major and intern at the Center who often writes case studies for the biweekly contest.

    “I try to frame them in a way that is not ethically black and white, but rather gray enough that a robust dialogue can emerge,” she explained. “I am always surprised when someone comes up with a solution that would never have occurred to me. I always feel very humbled and inspired reading the intelligent, multifaceted, diverse comments of our readers.”

    Those managing The Big Q stress that they are not looking for a “right” answer when they select a contest winner, rather a response that offers a thorough, ethical analysis.

    “The answers need to be holistic and well-rounded,” said another intern, Alex LeeNatali, a senior law and social justice/psychology major. “I think the best part of The Big Q is it provides the framework and foundation for very in-depth conversations with your peers. Having to defend and argue your opinion among your friends often leads to a greater understanding of alternative views and a strengthening of your own.”

  •  Leading the Way

    SCU employees and alumni named among top Silicon Valley Latino leaders.

    Silicon Valley Latino magazine has named its inaugural “40under40 Latinos2Watch” list and Santa Clara University is well represented. The group was chosen based on dedication to helping the Latino community, leadership skills, and professional success. Nearly a quarter of the honorees have ties to Santa Clara University.

    “It's no wonder so many of those honored are connected to this prestigious organization. Santa Clara University has the pulse of the next leaders of Silicon Valley,” says Assistant Vice President for Foundations Jason Rodriguez, who was named in the education category. “I am proud to be among this group and committed to continuing SCU's tradition of excellence and appreciation of diversity.”

    Members of the Bronco family were recognized in the education, corporate, community, and law categories. Many have earned a reputation for their dedication to helping others and inspiring change politically. Some attribute their success to strong networks.

    "I am thankful for the support of my loving wife, family, friends, and colleagues that allowed my passion to blossom,” says Lorenzo Gamboa, an alum and the associate director of undergraduate admission at SCU. “I look forward to using my social justice knowledge nurtured by Santa Clara University to open the doors of education to all regardless of their life circumstances."

    You can read more about the list in the next print edition of Silicon Valley Latino on April 23.

    Stephanie Bravo is the assistant director for social media at SCU and founder of The mentorship program was recognized by the White House and several major news outlets. She was nominated in the “community” category for her passion for higher education and social entrepreneurship.
    Javier M. Gonzalez ’05 is the director of local government affairs for the California Restaurant Association. He’s spent years working for several Santa Clara Valley nonprofits and has served in leadership roles in the state and local Democratic party.

    Perlita Dicochea ’97, Ph.D.  is an assistant professor of ethnic studies and environmental justice studies at Santa Clara University and member of the Women and Gender Studies Advisory Board. She also earned her B.A. in communication from Santa Clara. Her current research focuses on New River pollution on the Mexico/U.S. border and Guadalupe River watershed restoration in San Jose.
    Lorenzo Gamboa ’03 is the associate director of undergraduate admission at Santa Clara University and studied economics, international business, Spanish, and general engineering. He also serves on SCU’s Council for Inclusive Excellence and Diversity and is committed to helping first-generation families navigate the college experience. He co-founded Scholarships AZ, a nonprofit organization promoting higher educational access to all regardless of immigrant status.
    Jason Rodriguez is the assistant vice president for foundation, corporate, and government relations at SCU. After years working at HP, he has built a name for himself in the business world of Silicon Valley.

    Ricardo Benavidez ’00 is the senior community relations manager at Cisco and during his tenure the company has donated $25 million. He studied marketing while attending SCU. He was also awarded a U.S. House of Representatives Congressional Recognition for Outstanding and Invaluable Service to the Community.

    Elias Portales ’00 is the founder of the EFP Law group and earned a B.S. in political science from Santa Clara University before earning a law degree from Georgetown University. He has worked for the Obama administration and is also active in state and local politics.
    Micael Estremera ’02, J.D. ’06 is a trial attorney from East San Jose who graduated from Santa Clara University in ’02 with a B.S. in political science and ’06 with a law degree. He has held several leadership positions in Silicon Valley including president of the La Raza Lawyers Association.
    Nelson McElmurry, J.D. ’04 successfully runs his own law firm after attending law school at Santa Clara University. He has successfully defended two life cases with acquittals, which is highly commended so early in his career.

  •  Movin' on Up

    SCU School of Business MBA rises in U.S. News & World Report rankings.

    Santa Clara University’s part-time MBA program rose to No. 24 in the recent U.S. News & World Report “Best Graduate Schools Guide 2014.” The annual classification ranked Santa Clara’s program at 41 last year.

    “The bright, ambitious individuals who work in Silicon Valley have discovered Santa Clara will help them build a career and a business,” said S. Andrew Starbird, dean of the University’s Leavey School of Business. “Our students know what U.S. News has just noted—Santa Clara’s blend of theory and practice is perfectly adapted to working professionals’ success in the Bay Area.”

    In addition, the U.S. News guide placed SCU’s entrepreneurship specialty at No. 13. Interest in courses comprising the specialty has increased over the past few years, the Santa Clara graduate staff reports. This is the second time Santa Clara has appeared on the list of schools offering the specialization; the 2011 list ranked SCU at No. 16.

    “This entrepreneurship ranking confirms our decision to introduce a new M.S. in entrepreneurship degree last month,” said Elizabeth Ford, senior assistant dean for graduate programs. “Our faculty members connect Santa Clara’s curriculum to the practice of business in Silicon Valley, making SCU the ideal location to study entrepreneurship.”

    To compile the list, U.S. News surveyed business school deans and MBA program directors at 325 MBA programs, asking them to rank their peers on a 5-point scale. Eligibility for ranking was based on size (more than 20 enrolled part-time in Fall 2012) and accreditation by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International). The specialty lists were created from nominations for excellence in a particular specialty with those receiving the most mentions appearing on the list.

  •  How Tweet It Is

    Check out what people are saying about SCU on our social media channels.

    Many in the SCU community are putting why they love SCU into 140 characters or posting pictures of our beautiful campus on Facebook and Instagram. Here are just a few of our mentions. If you tweet, we’d love to follow you. Tweet us: @SantaClaraUniv and @SCUNews












  •  Gracious Spotlight

    It's good to be a Jesuit university when a Jesuit pope is elected.

    Santa Clara was at the epicenter of local and national news coverage of the March 13 selection of the new pope, Argentine Jesuit Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, who took the name Pope Francis. Two Jesuits who know the new pope personally—Fr. Arthur Liebscher of SCU’s history department and Fr. Alfonso Gomez, who is on sabbatical at SCU from his recent post as provincial of Argentina’ s Jesuits—spoke to CBS5, NBC Bay Area, KTVU, ABC, the San Jose Mercury News, and Univision.

    At the national level, Fr. Liebscher’s comments appeared on Good Morning America and spurred an interview and taping of the noon mass with NBC Nightly News. Fr. Gomez’s comments were captured by Univision’s national team as well.

    With invaluable help from Fr. Michael Zampelli and Fr. Luis Calero, SCU Media Relations quickly arranged two press conferences on the day of the news, as well as numerous other media interviews:  Thomas Cattoi of the Jesuit School of Theology was quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle and the San Jose Mercury News, KTVU, KCBS and KSFB radio, and Bay Area Reporter;  Fr. Michael McCarthy spoke to NBC Bay Area and KTVU and KGO Radio; Fr. Luis Calero was quoted in the New York Times; Fr. Gerald McKevitt was quoted in the Los Angeles Times; Fr. Paul Crowley spoke to KGO radio; Eric Hanson spoke to CBS News; Gary Macy offered his perspective in National Catholic Reporter; and Sally Vance-Trembath was quoted by the Christian Science Monitor, KCBS radio, and was interviewed twice on KGO radio, including a 45-minute spot Thursday morning. Matt Smith of Campus Ministry helped arrange for students to be interviewed by several local stations. He also captured many of the day’s historic moments for the Campus Ministry Youtube Channel.

    These are just a few of the interviews that ran in print and broadcast. If there is a topic in the news and you’d like to offer your expertise to reporters, please contact Deborah Lohse or Marika Krause, who are part of the media relations team in the Office of Marketing and Communication.

  •  Changing Lives

    The Northern California Innocence Project (NCIP) and the California DNA Project (CDP) at Santa Clara University School of Law announced that on March 8, the Alameda County Superior Court overturned the wrongful conviction of Johnny Williams for sex crimes after new DNA evidence proved his innocence. Mr. Williams served 14 years in prison. 

    “We are thrilled the state has recognized Johnny’s innocence and cleared his name,” said Linda Starr, NCIP’s legal director.

    “Additionally, we are grateful to the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office for their cooperation. Of the 303 innocent people exonerated by post-conviction DNA testing, nearly 75 percent involved eyewitness misidentification. Thus, in cases relying almost exclusively on eyewitnesses, we’ve learned that DNA evidence is the only way to conclusively prove innocence.”


    On Sept. 28, 1998, a man who called himself “Johnny” sexually accosted a 9-year-old girl as she walked home from school. The next day, while walking in the same area, the same man attempted to rape her. Mr. Williams was a former neighbor of the victim and familiar with her family. When the victim first reported the assault she did not say she knew the attacker, thus suggesting a stranger. However, individuals close to the victim suggested to police that “Johnny” may be Mr. Williams. One week after the attack the Oakland Police Department collected the clothes the victim was wearing during the assault. Forensic tests at the time of trial were unable to confirm biological evidence and no DNA testing was performed. On June 8, 2000, Mr. Williams was convicted of two counts of forcible lewd conduct against a child and one count of attempted rape.

    In 2012, NCIP, with the assistance of CDP, retested the victim’s t-shirt and found enough biological material to yield a complete male DNA profile that conclusively excluded Mr. Williams as the perpetrator.

    “To be convicted of such a terrible crime and spend 14 years in prison, labeled a sex offender, is a nightmare most people could never imagine,” said Melissa Dague O’Connell, Mr. Williams’ lead attorney with CDP. “Without DNA evidence, we would not have been able to prove his innocence.”

    Mr. Williams’ exoneration was made possible by a grant which created CDP and paid for the costs of retesting. However, that funding will expire in September.

    “Something terrible happened to that little girl and I hope they find the person who did it. I am thankful people finally know the truth about me so that I can rebuild my life,” Mr. Williams said after the ruling.

    This is the second innocent person NCIP has exonerated in 2013, and its 16th victory since its creation in 2001.

  •  The End of Overeating

    What should I eat? On any given day, it’s the question that we ask ourselves more than any other. How we answer affects everything from our lifespan to our mood. What we choose and what the food industry chooses to produce have also led the country into one of its most significant health crises ever. For millions of Americans, a growing number of health problems can be traced back to the trend of obesity and being overweight. But how did we get here?
    On April 9, David Kessler will deliver in his talk “The End of Overeating” at Santa Clara University.
    A medical doctor; past dean of the medical schools at Yale and the University of California, San Francisco; professor of pediatrics, epidemiology, and biostatistics at UC San Francisco; former commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration under presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton; lawyer; and now author, Dr. Kessler introduced the Nutrition Facts food labels and led the FDA's investigation of the tobacco industry and tobacco products.
    Known as a hard-line policy watchdog of the food industry, Kessler’s work has examined the physical as well as psychological aspects of overeating. At the most basic level, he asserts that foods loaded with fats, sugars, and salts are tricking our brains into telling us to eat even when we are not hungry. Through his investigation, he has uncovered the origins of the obesity epidemic and explains how we can take control of our eating.
    As the joint Gerald and Sally DeNardo Lectureship event for 2013 and the final event in the President’s Speaker Series, Kessler’s talk will be the major and most effective presentation in the health sciences at Santa Clara University this year. Tickets are free, but need to be reserved in advance. Visit the President’s Speaker Series website to get more information and make plans to join us for an evening about food policy and our nation’s eating habits.

  •  Social Justice and Law

    The blind Chinese civil-rights activist and attorney who protested abuses including alleged forced abortions in his homeland will be the recipient of this year’s Katharine and George Alexander Law Prize from Santa Clara University School of Law.

    The award for top lawyers who have used their legal careers to help alleviate injustice and inequity will be presented to Chen Guangcheng, at a ceremony the evening of March 18 at Santa Clara University’s Mayer Theatre. The presentation of the award and a discussion on the future of human rights in China will take place at 7 p.m. Prior to this, a reception will be held at 6 p.m. at the University’s Nobili Hall.

    Chen is a Chinese civil rights activist who for years pursued human-rights cases in rural areas of China. Known as the “barefoot lawyer” and self-taught in law, he has advocated for more than 20 years for women's rights, rights for disabled, land rights, and constitutional law and the rule of law.

    His 2005 class-action lawsuit against authorities in Linyi, Shandong alleged excessive enforcement of China’s one-child policy. The case landed him under house arrest and he was later sentenced to more than four years in prison. Even after his release he was detained under house arrest and reportedly beaten when his treatment was aired on the Internet.

    “Mr. Chen is an outstanding example of how one person can use the power of the law to speak up for those who are suffering,” said Santa Clara University School of Law Dean Donald Polden. “We are proud to honor his work with this year’s Alexander Law Prize.”

    In 2012, he escaped house arrest and fled to the U.S. Embassy in Beijing. His case received attention from the U.S. State Department, the British Foreign Secretary, Human Rights Watch, and Amnesty International, each of which issued appeals on his behalf.

    He and his family ultimately were granted U.S. visas after negotiations with the Chinese government. Chen now lives with his wife and two children in New York and studies law at New York University.

    He received the 2007 Ramon Magsaysay Award for Emergent Leadership; the 2012 Lantos Human Rights Prize; and the 2012 Human Rights Award from Human Rights First. In 2006 he was named to Time magazine’s 100 most influential people.

    Members of the public can find out more information and register for the event through

  •  Take Five

    Bob Henry is the new chief information security officer. He has more than two decades of experience in information systems and will be working with departments across campus to protect the University’s online information assets.

    1. What sparked your interest in information security?
    German DVDs stored and served up on a server I was responsible for in 2000. I was a systems administrator responsible for servers running Microsoft Windows and this was the first server I had whacked—that I know of! I decided that knowing how to keep a machine up and running wasn't enough and started learning how to avoid bad stuff and not rely, entirely, on luck. I've been studying information security ever since—a study that has morphed from "technical" security to "behavioral" security.

    2.How does being in Silicon Valley influence information privacy and security?
    I've only been here 3 months, but Silicon Valley is Geek Mecca. Many of the best information security practitioners and thought leaders in the world live and work around here so I can see them, hear them, and talk to them face-to-face. There are security seminars, workshops, and meetings every week. It is an amazing place to work and learn!

    3. Are you a Mac or a PC guy and why?
    Linux! Actually I am now using a Mac, I even have an iPhone. My daughter thinks it is hilarious because I teased her about her "dorkintosh" for years. My last computer was a PC—running Linux—and I was a Blackberry guy. I'll use whatever works—or maybe I'm a slave to fashion!

    4. What is the number one way faculty and staff can help keep their computers and the SCU network secure?
    1) Use long, strong passwords and change them regularly.
    2) Update your computer—keep anti-virus, system software, and applications up-to-date.
    3) Use long, strong passwords and change them regularly.

    5. Star Trek or Star Wars?
    Star Trek—Captain Kirk, Spock, Scottie, "Bones."

  •  Shaping Policy

    Findings from Ford Foundation-Backed Study on Undocumented Immigrant Students Unveiled in Washington, D.C.  Research conducted by Fairfield University, Loyola University Chicago, and Santa Clara University adds to debate on policies for undocumented students.

    Like any student, A.J. Bastida was thrilled the day he learned that he would be one of four high-achieving students to receive a scholarship to attend Santa Clara University in California’s Silicon Valley.  But unlike others, this scholarship was virtually his only chance to attend college – because from the age of 5, A.J. had lived in the United States as an undocumented immigrant, making other forms of financing or aid unavailable to him.

    Now pursuing a law degree at SCU and a grateful recipient of the Obama Administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, Bastida spoke Tuesday, Feb. 26 about the many challenges and occasional triumphs of pursuing higher education as an undocumented student.

    “I am a true testament to what Jesuit education really means,” said Bastida.

    In an effort to understand and help students like A.J., about 150 Jesuit university and college presidents, students, faculty, administrators and representatives from Congress member’s and Senator’s offices attended an event Tuesday titled “Immigration: Undocumented Students in Higher Education.”

    At the event, held in the Dirksen Senate Office Building, researchers from the three universities unveiled a new Immigrant Student National Position Paper, which included findings about the obstacles faced by undocumented students, as well as recommendations for new practices, procedures, and a model of leadership in higher education regarding access to education, particularly for the undocumented.

    “At the heart of the Immigrant Student National Position Paper is a call for improved institutional practices at Jesuit institutions in the United States to help these young people flourish on campus and off,” said project leader Richard Ryscavage, S.J., a Jesuit priest, sociology professor and director of the Center for Faith and Public Life at Fairfield University.

    “Ultimately, this project presents a way of proceeding on this area of immigration that informs and helps shape the national educational discourse.  Our findings revealed that a pathway to citizenship will not solve all of the challenges these student face.  Additional policies that address the needs of the students as well as their families are critical.”

    The Ford Foundation backed the study.

    For more on the findings click here.

  •  Finance and Entrepreneurship

    Leavey School of Business offers two new master's degrees.

    Santa Clara University’s Leavey School of Business will begin offering two new Master of Science degrees this summer, one in finance and one in entrepreneurship.

    The two new master’s degrees will complement the Master of Business Administration and Master of Science in Information Systems that are currently offered as advanced degrees.

    “With our nationally acclaimed faculty, location in Silicon Valley, and deep alumni ties, it was a natural for us to offer these two master’s degrees,” said S. Andrew Starbird, dean of the Leavey School of Business. “The finance degree is ideal for students seeking deeper analytical understanding for today’s venture-capital and financial marketplace. And the entrepreneurship degree will give students vital knowledge to find new market opportunities, evaluate customer needs, and understand what’s required to ‘scale up’ a good idea.”

    The M.S. in finance will include classes introducing students to sophisticated financial-statement analysis and understanding of U.S. and international financial markets and institutions. The M.S. in entrepreneurship will offer classes in managing innovation, intellectual property, and economics for business decisions. Both degrees will incorporate Santa Clara University’s longstanding emphasis on business ethics, including a course in business integrity and society.

    Classes will start July 8. More on the degrees can be found at or

  •  Short and Powerful

    Cinequest taps SCU filmmaking talent in pair of short films.

    Santa Clara University will have a strong showing at the 23rd Cinequest Film Festival kicking off this week in San Jose.

    Communication Lecturer Jonathan Fung’s film Hark will be screened. The film calls attention to human trafficking and first debuted at SCU last summer.

    “We are a visual culture and film and the arts can serve as a scholarly medium to educate, challenge, and mobilize a community,” said Fung, who cast his young daughter to play the lead in the film. Hark will screen on Thursday, Feb. 28 at 4:15 p.m.; Sunday, March 3 at 10:00 a.m.; and Tuesday, March 5 at 9:30 p.m. at the Camera 12 Theaters in downtown San Jose.

    A student documentary by Sofia Coyiuto ’12, Thicker than Blood, was also selected as part of the festival. It’s part of a selection of short films themed around the role of family. It runs Wednesday, March 6 at 9:30 p.m. and Friday, March 8 at 9:30 p.m. at the San Jose Repertory Theater.

    Assistant Professor of Communication Mike Whalen is also part of the documentary jury.

    For more details visit:

  •  Grants, Awards, and Publications

    Angelo Ancheta (School of Law) has received $15,066 from the International Institute of the Bay Area to support "Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals." This grant will help provide legal services toward serving undocumented youth who are eligible for the Obama Administration's "deferred action" initiative for undocumented youth who were brought to this country as children. He has also received a one-year renewal of $33,533 from the Equal Access Fund of the State Bar of California Legal Services Trust Fund Program. The funds will be used to support the “Consumer Rights Project” which provides legal assistance to meet the legal needs of low-income individuals, especially limited-English-speaking immigrants.

    Rich Barber (Physics) has received an additional $20,569 in subcontract funding from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory to fund year four of an anticipated four-year grant totaling $95,724. The work funded by this grant involves the study of various highly correlated metal systems using a one-of-a-kind Josephson Scanning Tunneling Microscope (JSTM).

    Gangshu Cai (Operations Management and Information Systems) has received $52,826 from the National Science Foundation to support "Collaborative Research on Studies of Multichannel Opaque Service Enterprise" to conduct an in-depth study of multichannel opaque service enterprises, which have uncertain demand and supply.

    Colleen Chien (Law School) has received $35,000 from the New America Foundation to support "Startups and Trolls." 

    Perlita R. Dicochea's (Ethnic Studies) manuscript, "Discourses of Race and Racism within Environmental Justice Studies: An Eco-racial Intervention," was recently published via open access with Ethnicity and Race in a Changing World: A Review Journal.

    Elizabeth Drescher (Religious Studies) has been awarded a journalism fellowship on the Social Science Research Council's New Directions in the Study of Prayer Project, which is funded by the Templeton Foundation.

    Leslie Gray (Environmental Studies) has received $25,000 from the Sharks Foundation to support "Bronco Urban Gardens (BUG)." The funds will be used to further develop existing sites while expanding strategically to serve additional areas in need.

    Tim Hight (Mechanical Engineering) has received $50,000 from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and U.S. Dept. of Energy to support "Solar Decathlon 2013: Solar Home 3.0." This is the first phase of funding of an anticipated two-phase grant for SCU’s participation in the Solar Decathlon 2013.

    Thane Kreiner (Center for Science, Technology, and Society) has received an additional $250,000 from the Skoll Foundation to support "Skoll Foundation—GSBI Partnership." The goals of this award are to develop a resource engine for the Global Social Benefit Incubator (GSBI); create a unified platform to innovate, drive, and scale collective social impact; and share GSBI programmatic learnings, networks, and knowledge.

    Hohyun Lee (Mechanical Engineering) has received $15,000 from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory to support "Phase Change Material in Automated Window Shades."

    Tim Myers (English) published a full-length poetry book entitled Dear Beast Loveliness. He also won the 2012 Magazine Merit Award for Fiction from the Society of Children's Books Writers and Illustrators. Myers is also nominated for a Pushcart Prize in Literature by Third Flatiron Publishing.

    Tom Plante (Psychology) wrote an article entitled “The 2005 Vatican instruction on homosexuality in seminaries: Are we in a "don't ask, don't tell" world on this topic?” that was published in Human Development.

    Tom Plante (Psychology), David Feldman (Counseling Psychology), Shauna Shapiro (Counseling Psychology) and Diane Dreher (English) all wrote chapters in the book Religion, Spirituality, and Positive Psychology: Understanding the Psychological Fruits of Faith.

    The Santa Clara, the University’s student-run weekly newspaper won a Pacemaker award for the 2011–12 academic year.

    Jerrold Lee Shapiro (Counseling Psychology) reviewed a new book about men in therapy called Beyond the Crisis of Masculinity: A Transcultural Model for Male Friendly Therapy that was published on the American Psychological Association Div. 51 website.

    Betty Young (Physics) has received year one funding of $392,027 from The Regents of the University of California and National Science Foundation to support "R&D Toward SuperCDMS at SNOLAB".

Printer-friendly format