The Impact of Alumni

Alumni from a variety of industries lent their stories and experiences to current CSU students, showcasing the many ways in which those with a liberal arts degree make a significant impact in their fields.

Scroll down to see this issue's featured stories
Rollin relaxes at home with his dogs, Molly and King

Bernie Rollin lauded with lifetime achievement award


A tireless and outspoken advocate for animal ethics, CSU philosophy’s Bernard Rollin has received a Lifetime Achievement Award for Excellence in Research Ethics.

The Colorado State University Alumni Association

Three liberal arts faculty named Best Teachers of 2016

April 2016

Liberal arts faculty recently took home more 2016 Best Teacher Awards than any other college at CSU.

Washington, D.C. capitol building

Kyle Saunders, CSU’s ‘political guru,’ discusses the 2016 presidential election

Political Science

Kyle Saunders explains his conspiracy theory research, analyzes the primary election process, and shares what has surprised him about this year’s presidential race.

children singer in chorus

GRAMMY Foundation supports autism research in the School of Music, Theatre and Dance

School of Music, Theatre, and Dance

Two professors, funded by the GRAMMY Foundation, are leading a study on musical creativity in children with autism spectrum disorder.

Yusef Komunyakaa takes the stage

Pulitzer prize winner Komunyakaa returns to CSU for poetry reading


English department alumnus Yusef Komunyakaa returned to CSU to share his work and words of wisdom with the community.

CSU Alumna Bonnie Ross, Corporate Vice President

CSU alum Bonnie Ross talks technology, female involvement in the industry

Journalism and Media Communication

For CSU alumna Bonnie Ross, her time as a Ram was a stepping stone into a career of technology and creativity. Ross is now head of 343 Industries and Halo, and recently returned to campus to speak to students.

Bruce Bodaken

Bruce Bodaken: A business leader with a Philosophical Mind


Alumnus Bruce Bodaken (‘73) believes it is his background in philosophy that distinguished him from his peers in business and uniquely prepared him to be a leader and innovator.

Al Bimper

From CSU to Super Bowl: Bimper receives Young Professional Award

Ethnic Studies

Senior Associate Athletic Director for Diversity and Inclusion Albert Bimper is being honored with the LeRoy T. Walker Young Professional Award from SHAPE America.

Spring photo by Chase Baker.

Faculty and Staff Retirements

April 2016

“There will come a time when you believe everything is finished. That will be the beginning.” – Louis L’Amour

The Community Welcome and Ice Cream Social


April 2016

A tribute to the liberal arts family members we have lost.

Joe MDA spokes person

Alumnus named spokesperson for Muscular Dystrophy Association

Communication Studies | Journalism and Media Communication

Joe Akmakjian, who graduated from CSU in 2013 with a dual degree in journalism and media communication and communication studies, has been named the first adult National Goodwill Ambassador for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

Aerial view of Afghanistan from a the paratroop door

Afghanistan war veteran, liberal arts student recounts experience

International Studies | Languages, Literatures and Cultures

Liberal arts student Rachael Martel explains how real-life experience has shaped her views on negative American sentiment towards Muslim and Islamic culture.

Sarah "Mac" Robinson finishing the California International Marathon

Alumna Runs Ram Tough at Olympic Trials


On February 13, Sarah “Mac” Robinson was among the elite runners who lined up in Los Angeles at the U.S Olympic Team Marathon Trials, attempting to be one of three women to represent the country at the Rio Olympics next summer.

Cheryl Strayed spoke about her book "Wild"

Ann Gill endowment to bring speakers and artists to campus

April 2016

The Ann Gill Visiting Lecturer and Artist Endowment was created to bring diverse talents, perspectives, and thought leadership to campus.

Foco Symphony

CSU, partners crowdfund study on music and Alzheimer’s


Organizers of a program that brings individuals with dementia and their caregivers to Fort Collins Symphony concerts have created a crowdfunding campaign to help pay for a Colorado State University study of its impact on the participants.

woman smiling

A Legacy of Giving: Dr. Irene Vernon

Ethnic Studies

Faculty at Colorado State University wear many hats. They are teachers, mentors, leaders, researchers, advocates and activists. And some of them are leading by example in another important role, by investing in the future of Colorado State University as donors.

CSU CMST instructor Elizabeth Sink takes questions

ACT Human Rights Film Festival sees strong opening weekend

Communication Studies

The ACT Human Rights Film Festival kicked off on Friday, April 15th, with six films showing at the Lory Student Center Theater over the opening weekend.

The 2016 Student Art Exhibit.

2016 Student Art Exhibit

Art and Art History

With mediums ranging from found materials to spray paint and polyurethane, the Curfman Gallery showcased broad talents at its 2016 student exhibit.

Students working together in classroom

A bridge to college: Fort Morgan students explore CSU

Ethnic Studies

About 35 students from Fort Morgan High School visited CSU on April 6 in a growing partnership that a faculty member and his students in the Department of Ethnic Studies have formed with that community.

Hanging large art frame

A Gift That Will Keep On Giving: Art Gift Arrives at New Home

Art and Art History

Last month, the Gregory Allicar Museum of Art at Colorado State University began receiving nearly 200 works of art in its recently completed galleries and storage spaces.

VP for Research Cohort story photo

Liberal arts students earn CSU research fellowships

History | Sociology

Two liberal arts students have each earned a coveted spot in the 2016-2017 CSU Vice President for Research Cohort.

Cory Clarke.

Soon-to-be grad blends business with creative entrepreneurship

LEAP Institute for the Arts

“I would call myself an independent artist-entrepreneur, which is what I think you have to be now if you want to work in the creative industry.”

Reefer Madness the Musical Music -Poster- by Dan Studney Lyrics by Kevin Murphy Women Cry for it-Men Die for it! "the Weed with Roots in Hell "

‘Reefer Madness, The Musical’ redone by CSU Theatre as satirical commentary

School of Music, Theatre, and Dance

Enthusiasm is high over the 4/20 opening of CSU Theatre’s production of the cult classic, Reefer Madness, The Musical, by Kevin Murphy and Dan Studney.

College Spoken Word winner Arisson Stanfield

Standing ovation for student’s spoken word performance


Philosophy student Arisson Stanfield brought the crowd to their feet during the 2016 MLK Day community celebration.

Viñales Valley, Cuba.

Cuba: a homecoming story

Ethnic Studies

Over spring break, a group of Colorado State University students, Fort Collins community members, and two ethnic studies faculty members embarked on a nine-day service learning trip to Cuba.

Jenna Hamilton in St. Petersburg, Russia

Critical Language Scholarship takes three students abroad

Anthropology and Geography | Economics | International Studies | Languages, Literatures and Cultures

Three students are off to Jordan, Tanzania, and Russia this summer thanks to a competitive language scholarship.

Welcome to Vegas sign

CSU Pep Band and the CSU Spirit Squad Recognized as Best in the West!

School of Music, Theatre, and Dance

The CSU Pep Band and the CSU Spirit Squad were named this year’s top-ranking Mountain West Conference Tournament Game Day Spirit Program, with a score of 97%.

Lindsay in Ballet pose

Dance Alumni Celebration: Uniting Dancing Rams of All Ages

School of Music, Theatre, and Dance

On April 27-30, the Colorado State University School of Music, Theatre and Dance will host its first Alumni Dance Celebration, a reunion of dancers from as far back as the mid-1970s.

Mural of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Dr. Kwame Nkrumah.

Reflections on Ghana

Ethnic Studies

Over winter break, a group of students, faculty and staff from Colorado State University embarked on a three week serve and learn trip to Ghana.

LEAP Arts Leadership and Administration photo.

Online Arts Leadership Master’s among top leadership programs

LEAP Institute for the Arts

CSU’s online Master of Arts Leadership and Administration has received top honors from the “Oscars” of leadership.

Japanese Speech Contest

Languages, Literatures and Cultures looks to expand student reach

Languages, Literatures and Cultures

From hybrid courses to agricultural Spanish, the department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures is expanding its reach and putting an emphasis on practical skills.

Photo via

Alumna pursues a love of literature at Wolverine Farm Publishing

Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts

Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts alumna Meg Schiel, class of 2013, shares her post-graduation journey.

Two students pose during the 2016 Rams JD dinner.

$12,000 Raised at Annual Rams Juris Doctor Dinner

Political Science

On February 16, 2016 the Rams Juris Doctor group gathered for their annual fundraising dinner in Denver for networking, professional development, and to raise funds for the Rams JD Scholarship.

Woodward tour of new campus opening Dec 2016. Quinha McBride, Terran Hause, Craig Blackburn, Hallie Gardner, Andre Foltz, Michele Betsill

Woodward internship provides ‘valuable experience’ for graduating senior

Political Science

“My internship has added value to my educational experience because it has allowed me to apply what I’m learning in a real-world setting.” – Andre Foltz

Moriah Hummer between two of her art pieces

Comic book artist, CSU alum empowers women through Hallery show

Art and Art History

A bright new exhibition in the Hallery has transformed the lower level of the Lory Student Center into a page from a comic book.

Horsetooth Reservoir in early spring

Words for the Earth


The Words for the Earth award is being created in honor of John Calderazzo and SueEllen Campbell, on the eve of their retirement from CSU.

Rwanda CSU delegation

CSU and government of Rwanda are partners in smart, sustainable development

Anthropology and Geography

Dr. Galvin traveled to Africa to discuss Smart Village Minigrid project with Rwandan government officials.

Felicia Zamora

Alumna Felicia Zamora wins 2016 Andrés Montoya Poetry Prize


Alumna Felicia Zamora has been selected as the recipient of the 2016 Andrés Montoya Poetry Prize.

The Surveyor's Detritius by Erika Osborne

Sustainability education through art

Art and Art History

Erika Osborne creates works that raise awareness of environmental issues in the American West, including climate change and the urban-wilderness interface.

Martz at work in the Left Hand Brewing Company in Longmont.

CSU prepared alumna for Paris — and brewery engineering

International Studies | Languages, Literatures and Cultures

Allison Martz combined liberal arts with engineering, creating a unique career path which ultimately led to the world of brewing.

NSF lecture

National Science Foundation lecture presented by Kate Browne

Anthropology and Geography

Anthropology’s Katherine Browne delivered a talk as part of the National Science Foundation’s Distinguished Lecture Series.

The Front Range flood of September 2013

When disaster strikes, a resilient community stands firm

Economics | Sociology

Faculty in Sociology and Economics are participating in a public webinar to review the Center for Risk-Based Community Resilience Planning’s first-year findings.

Social Work collaboration

Cross-Campus Collaboration between Theatre and Social Work Works!

School of Music, Theatre, and Dance

Last semester a cross-campus partnership formed when Shari Simmons’ Individual Therapy class teamed up with Amy Scholl’s Acting Class for a hand-on experience: mock counseling sessions.

Howkins in Antarctica

Professor discusses polar regions, solutions to the environmental crisis


There’s no such thing as a quick fix for multi-layered issues such as climate change — he said one of the main reasons he wrote the book was to simply begin a conversation.

Ann Little

Humans of CSU profiles Ann Little


Intellectual off-roading with a punk rock heart.

Ethan Footlik works as a freelance translator in Mexico City, Mexico. He works translating pieces from French into English. Photo courtesy of Footlik.

Alumni use language skills working abroad

Languages, Literatures and Cultures | Political Science

Picking everything up and leaving to work in a new country is no more than a dream for some, but others have been able to make it a reality by landing a job abroad after graduating with language skills.

Painting by Keith Foskin

Being interdisciplinary

Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts

Kevin Foskin, director of the Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts program, talks about what it means to be interdisciplinary.

Ashley Colburn rides an elephant

New study abroad programs launched in multimedia and travel writing

Journalism and Media Communication

International television storyteller Ashley Colburn (’08) will lead a two-week travel writing course in Croatia, where she is famous for programs about the country’s many amazing tourist and cultural destinations.


Why I study Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts

Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts

Sophomore Jeordin Wiley shares her perspective on why the Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts major is the perfect fit for her.

Anna Fowler, CSU anthropology major

Anthropology Club Participates in Rice Elementary Science Night

Anthropology and Geography

A fun and memorable experience for CSU Anthropology Club volunteers and elementary students at the 2016 Rice Elementary Science Night.

Kellyn Davis Koobi Fora

Amanda Jones Scholarship makes International Field Experience a Reality

Anthropology and Geography

Funded by the Amanda Jones Field Study Abroad Award, Kellyn Davis traveled to Kenya last summer to attend a six-week paleontology field school.

Cusco, Peru

Liberal Arts students completing semester abroad on Gilman Scholarship

Economics | Languages, Literatures and Cultures | Sociology

Two students in the College of Liberal Arts have been awarded the prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship, which aims to diversify students’ international experiences.

Juan Diaz de Leon and Matt Holmes

Alumnus breaks Guinness World Record — handily


Colorado State University alumnus Juan Diaz de Leon and friend Matt Holmes recently reached for a Guinness World Record for the world’s longest handshake — all to bring exposure to Colorado entrepreneurs.

Campus in summer


LEAP Institute for the Arts

A soon-to-be graduate of the LEAP master’s program, Christine Pelletier has already landed a position with the Cheyenne Symphony Orchestra.

Peek, right, with co-author Fothergill.

Lori Peek’s Hurricane Katrina book named Colorado Book Awards finalist


Sociology faculty Lori Peek’s book is in the running for a Colorado Book Award.

Dan Beachy-Quick

Dan Beachy-Quick selected as a finalist for the Colorado Book Awards


Colorado Humanities and Center for the Book announced that Dan Beachy-Quick is a finalist for the Colorado Book Awards in Poetry for his latest work (gentlessness).

Caleb Hudson

Canadian Brass Member Caleb Hudson is CSU’s New Trumpet Professor

School of Music, Theatre, and Dance

In fall 2016, Caleb Hudson, trumpet artist of the Canadian Brass, will join the music faculty at Colorado State University as the assistant professor of trumpet.

Cindy Griffin during a trip to Scotland.

Cindy Griffin retires after 23 years at CSU

Communication Studies

Dr. Cindy Griffin will retire at the end of this year after 23 years at CSU.

Colorado State University Best Teacher Greg Dickinson

CSU’s Public Speaking class named among the best nationwide

Communication Studies

The National Communication Association named SPCM 200: Public Speaking, a class offered by CSU’s Department of Communication Studies, as a “Program of Distinction” at its 2015 annual convention in Las Vegas last November.

The Community Welcome and Ice Cream Social

Remembering Jennifer Fish Kashay


Paying tribute to Department of History associate professor Jennifer Fish Kashay.

Yusef Komunyakaa reads from his works

Alumni draw enthusiastic crowds at events

English | Journalism and Media Communication

Halo executive Bonnie Ross and Pulitzer prize winning poet Yusef Komunyakaa were greeted by large crowds as they visited campus this spring.

Ann Gill, former Dean of the College of Liberal Arts, with Cam the Ram, April 18, 2016

So long for now: Reflections From Dean Gill

April 2016

As retirement nears, Ann leaves our liberal arts family with memories and gratitude.

Ben Withers

Ben Withers named dean of Liberal Arts

April 2016

The new dean of the College of Liberal Arts is an art historian and former department chair.