Alumni Updates

Robert Deane, Journalism, 2007
Submitted: March 2, 2020
Robert Deane, Journalism, 2007, works as a Library Technician II for the Oregon Tech Library in Klamath Falls, Oregon. In February of 2020 Deane graduated with his Masters in Education: Social Studies, from Western Governor's University and is now working on his Masters in Library Science from St. John's University via distance education.

Aaron Louis Cobas, Politics, 2016
Submitted: January 29, 2020
Since graduating, Aaron Louis Cobas, Politics, 2016, has been trying to acquire his dream position that he has wanted since the age of nine years old. Last December, that dream came true. Cobas has accepted a full-time position as a Park Ranger for New Mexico State Parks. Ever since he was little his fondest memories have been going up into the Sierras, as well as Yosemite and Joshua Tree, looking at the majesty that is our public lands. Because of the education and training he received at HSU he has an exciting new chapter in life and the new adventures that come with it.

Don Hoeler, Anthropology, 2005
Submitted: January 19, 2020
Don Hoeler, Anthropology, 2005, is currently living in Portland, Oregon. He completed his Masters in Hospital Administration and Management and has international business experience working with emerging markets in Asia and Europe. Hoeler says his anthropology studies had a profound impact on his career and relationships and sends a "shoutout" to Dr. Todd Young who inspired him to chase after his dreams. "Economic Anthropology was by far my favorite course work. Thank you HSU."

Barbara Muskat, Art, 1975
Submitted: January 18, 2020
Barbara Muskat, Art, 1975, has been teaching in a public school setting for the last 26 years. She taught as a secondary art teacher and for the last 15 years taught kindergarten where she includes the arts in many ways. Muskat will be retiring at the end of the 2020 school year.

Michelle Gienger, History, 2007
Submitted: January 13, 2020
A few years ago Michelle Gienger, History, 2007, transitioned from a Federal Investigator at the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to a Management and Program Analyst with the US Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General. In this position, she is on a team that conducts reviews of DOJ programs for the DOJ, Congress, and public.

Tai Parker, Critical Race, Gender & Sexuality Studies, 2016
Submitted: January 7, 2020
After graduating, Tai Parker, Critical Race, Gender & Sexuality and Psychology, 2016, earned a Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology and went on to become the Trans Health Case Manager for Open Door Community Health Center. Parker says " I would not have gone down this path had it not been for my experiences in the CRGS department, surrounded by a culture of acceptance and constant critical thought. The base knowledge I learned in the CRGS department opened my eyes and gave me words to experiences I had, and a path into how I wanted to see change happen in my immediate community."

Kristen Van Ausdall, Art, 1976
Submitted: January 7, 2020
On Saturday Oct. 27, 2019 Professor of Art History Kristen Van Ausdall, Art, 1976, passed away. She died at the Stanford University Medical Center in Palo Alto, California. While Van Ausdall had been on medical leave at the time of her death, her passing came as a shock to those who were close to her. She is survived by her husband, Scott Pringle. Van Ausdall had been a resident of Mount Vernon, Ohio, teaching at Kenyon College. After completing her B.A. in Studio Art and English at Humboldt State University in 1976 (inspired by Art History Professor Max Butler), she went on to attain an M.A. from the University of Oregon in 1981 and a Ph.D. from Rutgers University in 1994.

Michael Murdock, Theatre, 1989
Submitted: December 18, 2019
Michael Murdock, Theatre Arts, 1989, moved back to Los Angeles from the Seattle area to teach high school Drama at a private school for Twice Exceptional (2e) students.

Shannon Dybvig, Journalism, 2002
Submitted: December 17, 2019
hannon Dybvig, Journalism, History, 2002, co-produced the documentary Diving Deep: The Life and Times of Mike deGruy, which played at the Miniplex in Arcata January 10, 2020. In 2008 Dybvig earned an MFA in Photography at Brooks Institute of Photography. Dybvig has been working in the documentary film industry in Southern California since 2005

Christopher Andriessen, Politics, 2007
Submitted: December 12, 2019
Utilizing a decade's worth of private sector experience, Christopher Andriessen, Politics, 2007, recently joined Caltrans in its District 9 office as its new Maintenance Public Information Officer. The move follows two years of working for the California Department of Insurance in San Francisco.

Arthur Grusensky, Music, 1978
Submitted: November 22, 2019
Arthur Grusensky, Music, 1978, headed immediately after graduation to the University of Bologna in Italy where he earned his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and studied at Conservatorio di Musica G.B. Martini in flute. He subsequently became licensed in Ohio, Massachusetts, Utah, Colorado and California. A dedicated athlete he started and ran a small animal hospital in Moab for nine years - mountain biking, hiking, skiing, and kayaking during his time there. Ultimately returning to Hermosa Beach, California he specialized in high speed spay & neuter, studied Filipino martial arts(escrima) and became a world traveller going to exotic locations to trek such as Nepal, the Tibetan plateau(zanskar and Ladakh), bike tour the Karakoram Highway in northeast Pakistan and cross the Himalayas at 13,400 feet outside Manali.

Devin Theobald, Politics, 2004
Submitted: November 20, 2019
Devin Theobald, Politics, 2004 is employed by the County of Humboldt Public Works Department, Environmental Services Division.

Vanessa Vrtiak, Sociology, 2017
Submitted: October 30, 2019
Vanessa Vrtiak, Sociology, 2017, recently gave a Ted Talk about her life, and would like to share it with the Humboldt State Family. "Thank you for being there for me and helping me shape the woman I am today. I'm so grateful I was able to go to a University with people that truly believe in their students and champion their success." Watch the Ted Talk here:

Michael Stockstill, Journalism, 1971
Submitted: October 14, 2019
Michael Stockstill, Journalism, 1971, has been appointed to the board of the Irvine Land Trust, a non-profit building and operating low cost housing in Irvine, California. The Land Trust has and will construct rental and for sale units that will remain in Land Trust ownership forever, guaranteeing the units remain affordable.

Nick Entsminger, History, 2009
Submitted: October 7, 2019
Nick Entsminger, History, 2009, was accepted into the Doctorate of Medical Science program at the AT Still Universities, Arizona School of Health Sciences and has recently submitted both a journal article and medical textbook on pre-hospital 12-lead electrocardiogram interpretation for potential publishing. Additionally, through familial research, Entsminger was able to induct his family into both the Sons of the American Revolution as well as the Sons of the Union Veterans of the Civil War. He continues his love of history and views his time pursuing a history degree at Humboldt State as the years that inspired his pursuits.

Valerie Tepetlanco, International Studies, 2018
Submitted: September 4, 2019
Valerie Tepetlanco, International Studies, 2018, has been accepted to the M.A. in Cultural Studies program at Claremont Graduate University.

Glenn R Strachan, Sociology, 1983
Submitted: August 9, 2019
Glenn Strachan, Sociology, 1983, has been fortunate enough to have traveled to 116 countries while working for United States Agency for International Development (USAID) funding projects in maternal health and international broadband solutions. Over the past 35-years, Strachan has seen the world and taken photographs everywhere he been, which was inspired by his photography classes at HSU. Now that retirement has arrived, his work has been selected for 12 juried shows thus far in 2019. He is humbled by the selections and is up for a major award in London if he makes the final cut. Strachan says he misses his days at HSU as it was a perfect time to be there doing his graduate studies.

Lyla Godfryd, International Studies, 2019
Submitted: August 7, 2019
Lyla Godfryd, International Studies, 2019, will be serving in the Peace Corps as an Environmental Education Volunteer in Panama beginning in February. Lyla says she feels very blessed to have been provided with such an encouraging and caring group of professors and fellow classmates and the International Studies program at HSU has provided her with the skills and confidence she needs to embark on this journey!

Stephanie Cowherd, English, 2014
Submitted: July 26, 2019
Stephanie Cowherd, English, 2014, works for Ecotrust, an environmental non-profit based in Portland, Oregon. She leads community outreach and engagement, communications, and manages tribal forestry projects for her Forests & Ecosystem Services team at Ecotrust. Her current projects include a landscape assessment of opportunities and barriers in tribal forestry workforce development, working alongside native educators to design culturally-specific curriculum for forestry education tools, and community engagement with tribal forestry activities.

Ariana Hendren, International Studies, 2017
Submitted: July 17, 2019
After completing her degree Ariana Hendren, International Studies, 2017, earned a Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) Certificate. She caught the travel bug after studying abroad in Spain with the HSU World Languages and Cultures Department. She is now teaching elementary-middle school students at an English Academy in South Korea with her boyfriend whom she met while living in Arcata. They will soon move to a new country to continue their teaching adventure.