TURLOCK – (December 3, 2008) Gerardo Martinez steered his way through job changes and personal tragedy. Vance Prather found prestigious opportunities opened for him. Mark Say discovered a strong support network after making a difficult decision regarding a family issue. All three are pleased with what they have gained both professionally and personally as members of the first cohort of the California State University, Stanislaus Executive Master of Business Administration degree program that concluded in November.
The 29 graduates of the first in a series of cohorts will be honored at a special reception on Friday, December 5. Having attended class sessions in Tracy, the graduates are the first to complete the 15-month, 36-unit program that has attracted students from all over Central California. Eighty students are currently enrolled in three cohorts, including two still under way in Stockton and Turlock. Another cohort is scheduled to start in Modesto in April 2009.
“It is very gratifying to see the excitement that the Executive MBA program has generated in this region,” CSU Stanislaus President Hamid Shirvani said. “The professional skills students are developing on their way to earning a graduate degree are going to benefit communities and businesses all over Central California.”
Under the direction of the College of Business Administration and administered through the University’s Office of Extended Education, the program has seen its popularity spread far and wide. Students from as far as the Bay Area and Monterey County have enrolled in the degree program that focuses on helping management professionals who are highly sought after by regional industries and organizations to enhance their managerial skills.
“Participants value the involvement they have in working with the program’s corporate sponsors to apply their executive skills to real life case studies,” said Dr. Ashour Badal, EMBA Senior Associate Director and a member of the CSU Stanislaus College of Business Administration faculty. “The dynamic experiences that students encounter in this program make them more marketable as professional managers.”
Gerardo Martinez of Stockton, who started his career as a television photographer and has since advanced to management level jobs in the television and radio industry, has experienced job changes, a personal tragedy when his wife suffered a miscarriage, and career advancement during his participation in the program. Formerly with ClearChannel Radio in Modesto and CBS Radio in Sacramento, Martinez was named National Sales Manager for Hearst-Argyle TV’s KQCA Channel 58 in Sacramento in November.
“I’ve overcome a personal tragedy that made it a very difficult year, but I’ve learned a lot about myself in this program and what I can do with this degree while landing a position with a very prestigious company,” Martinez said. “It feels good to be here at the end of the program and having covered some areas that have stirred my interest in furthering my education. Working with some very bright people in the program and sharing their professional experiences was also invaluable.”
Vance Prather, Senior Manager of Program Management at Logitech Inc. in Fremont and a resident of Tracy, found that his Executive MBA paved the way for acceptance at Stanford University as a Fellow in Product Realization. He starts classes December 17 on a full two-year scholarship.
“I had heard that my MBA would open doors, but I didn’t expect it so soon,” Prather said. “This program will enhance my standing at Logitech and my career in general as I work on my passion, product development.”
Mark Say, Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer at Lodi Memorial Hospital, faced a tough decision after he was well into the program. He temporarily withdrew in March to help his 87-year-old mother deal with health issues, but was allowed to resume his studies in another cohort and will march with his classmates when they receive their degrees next June.
“The interaction and support of classmates and the Saturday morning classes have worked out great for me,” Say said. “My background is in pharmacy, so I’ve gained substantial knowledge about current business practices and been able to apply skill sets that have been very valuable to me professionally.”
For more information on the EMBA program, call (209) 667-3288 or visit the Web site at www.csustanEMBA.com.