Today: NFL Player David Quessenberry on His Lymphoma Battle

Posted Aug. 14, 2014 by Today.

By Chris Serico

From his Houston Texans teammates and National Football League opponents to family members and an 8-year-old superfan, David Quessenberry [a San Jose State graduate] has countless allies in his fight against non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

At Thursday morning’s practice in Houston, players and coaches sported “Texans for DQ” T-shirts for DQ Strong Day, the team’s tribute to the second-year offensive tackle in support of the Lymphoma Research Foundation.

“It’s overwhelming, and it motivates me to fight my fight even harder,” Quessenberry told TODAY.com. “I wake up every day knowing that I have an army behind me.”

Read the full story.

From Undergrads to Business Leaders

SJSU's I2P team members in a group photo.

SJSU’s I2P team included Jared Oliva, Tu Nguyen, Maleeha Naqvi, Kyle Tang and their adviser, Professor Guna Selvaduray (CSU Public Affairs photo).

Hurt your elbow? Can’t lift your backpack?

SJSU students have created a forearm support device perfect for this situation and they are well on their way toward realizing their dream of transforming their idea into a business opportunity.

This month, they were finalists in the CSUPERB-I2P® Early-Stage Biotechnology Commercialization Challenge, part of the 21st Annual CSU Biotechnology Forum right here in Silicon Valley.

SJSU student shows visitor a poster for his project.

Duc Pham, ’15 Biochemistry, presents his poster to San Francisco State Professor George Gassner (Daryl Eggers photo).

The forum is a networking and professional development opportunity for students, faculty members and industry professionals. Everyone gathers for workshops, meetings, award presentations and poster sessions.

For example, Professor of Chemistry Daryl Eggers moderated a bioengineering reception to bring more engineers to the forum, which is quite interdisciplinary, including fields like kinesiology and physics.

The Exo-Arm

This includes SJSU’s I2P (Idea to Product) team. Three members are biomedical engineering majors, a fourth is studying business administration and a fifth is majoring in history.

Together, they presented the “Exo-Arm,” a simple, light but effective device designed to help people with limited mobility at the elbow carry objects weighing up to 30 pounds.

This product addresses the gap in the market between robotic exoskeletons and traditional slings,” said Jared Oliva, ’14 History.

spider

An exoskeleton is an external skeleton that supports and protects an animal, like this spider. The Exo-Arm would also strengthen the human arm.

The engineering students built the prototype, while the business and history majors developed the branding and business plan. Their adviser was Professor of Material and Chemical Engineering Guna Selvaduray. Tech Futures Group also provided guidance.

Entrepreneurship Education

The main goal of the I2P competition was entrepreneurship education, which means helping students learn what is needed to transform a life sciences idea into a commercial product.

“Out of the 20 teams in the preliminaries, San Jose State made it to the final round. Juggling final exams, part-time jobs and, for one team member, a newborn baby, we worked hard on our final presentation in front of the I2P judges,” Oliva said.

Although we ultimately did not win, the I2P Competition proved to be an invaluable experience for everyone.”

So valuable that the team is keeping design details under wraps.

“We are working on getting everything set,” Oliva said, “so that we can start putting it out there again.”

SJSU Celebrates International Week

Why should you check out International Education Week Nov. 12-15?

Because going abroad will set you apart, give you competitive jobs skills and, most important of all, expand your world view.

Campus events

At SJSU, highlights include study and work abroad fairs Nov. 13; a lunchtime talk on preparing for success in a globalized world Nov. 14; and the International House Quiz (that’s “IQ” for short!) Nov. 15.

The Department of World Languages and Literatures will host the lunchtime talk. Speakers will include Professor of French Dominique van Hooff, Professor of Organization and Management Asbjorn Osland and Professor of History and Global Studies Michael Conniff.

Prefer something hands-on? Check out the Great Global Breakfast Nov. 14; try a turban with the Sikh Students Association Nov. 14; or take a swing at cricket with the Indian Student Association Nov. 15.

Events abroad

Meanwhile, President Mohammad Qayoumi and Dean of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts Charles Bullock are in Vietnam this week building ties with their counterparts.

SJSU was recently tapped by the the U.S. Agency for International Development to coordinate an international consortium enhancing social work education in Vietnam.

SJSU Celebrates International Week

President Qayoumi and Dean Bullock with Vietnam National University, Hanoi, Vice President Nguyen Kim Som (center, between Qayoumi and Bullock) and his colleagues after a morning of meetings Nov. 12 at their campus (photo courtesy of Tuan Tran).

The trip’s timing and purpose dovetails well with International Education Week, a national series of events celebrating the benefits of international education and exchange worldwide.

Sixth in the nation

Officials at The U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education kicked off the week by releasing “Open Doors 2013,” an international student census.

SJSU ranks sixth in the nation among colleges and universities granting bachelor’s and master’s degrees, with 2,194 international students on campus in 2012-2013.

View a complete list of SJSU International Education Week events.

Former Governor Gray Davis to Speak at SJSU

Former Governor Gray Davis to Speak at SJSU

Former Governor Gray Davis to Speak at SJSU

Former Gov. Davis (courtesy of gray-davis.com)

Former governor Gray Davis will speak at the next Don Edwards Lecture in Politics and History at 7 p.m. March 19 in the Barrett Ballroom at the Student Union. Davis will reflect on recent changes to the California constitution that may make it easier to govern the state, and the prospects for future reform. He will then participate in a moderated discussion in which he will answer questions from the audience. Assistant Professor Garrick Percival, whose work focuses on American politics, will serve as moderator. This event is free and open to the public. The Edwards Lecture series was launched in 1995 by friends and admirers of Congressman Don Edwards, with the goal of enabling students to meet and hear the stories of prominent men and women who have shaped our history. Edwards represented San Jose for 32 years in the U.S. House of Representatives, where he earned the title “the conscience of Congress” for his steadfast support of civil rights and his advocacy of all the disadvantaged. In 2003, the House of Representatives honored Edwards with one of the first Congressional Distinguished Service Awards, noting the civility of his work and his refusal to pursue “political ambition at the expense of common decency” or to “sacrifice his soul at the alter of political expediency.”

Alumnus Leads State Parks Department

Alumnus Appointed State Parks Director

Alumnus Leads State Parks Department

Major General Jackson at a campus event in 2011 (Robert Bain photo).

In a move to restore public confidence in a troubled agency, Governor Brown appointed an SJSU alumnus to lead the California Department of Parks and Recreation.

Retired U.S. Marine Corps Major General Anthony L. Jackson “brings more than 30 years of problem-solving and management experience to Parks,” Brown said in a statement.

“I am confident that the stewardship of California’s beaches, forests, estuaries, dunes and wetlands is in good hands and that the confidence and trust of Californians in our Parks Department will be restored.”

Jackson’s last post after a 36-year military career was commanding general of Marine Corps Installations West, including Camp Pendleton, Twentynine Palms and other bases where Marines train for advanced combat operations.

While attending SJSU on a full football scholarship, Jackson played three varsity seasons and was team captain in 1970. He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in history from SJSU in 1971 and 1973, respectively.

Jackson also received an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters at the 2011 SJSU commencement ceremony. He serves on the board of the Tower Foundation of SJSU, which manages all SJSU philanthropic donations. His own giving supports the Burdick Military History Project, College of Social Sciences and SJSU Athletics.

Oakland Tribune: What do "The Hunger Games," "The Avengers," "Brave," and SJSU Have in Common?

It’s the summer of the bow

Posted by the Oakland Tribune July 5, 2012.

By Angela Hill, Oakland Tribune

Historians say the humble bow sprang up almost simultaneously in far-flung regions of our world during the Mesolithic era. The work of ancient outer-space aliens, no doubt?

And today history repeats itself. Archery, the practice of using the bow and arrow, is everywhere in an oddly coincidental, surely alien-produced fad, emerging nearly simultaneously in far-flung regions — of pop culture, this time, showing up even in such unlikely places as “The Bachelorette.”

What began earlier this year with can’t-miss Katniss in “The Hunger Games” quickly spread to Hawkeye felling creepy Chitauri dudes in “The Avengers,” then a spunky Scottish redhead rebelling in “Brave.”

The trend continues with archers in HBO’s “Game of Thrones,” and two new fall TV shows: “Arrow,” with a vigilante character who tries to right society’s wrongs with bow in hand, and J.J. Abrams’ “Revolution,” in which all the world’s power grids and electronic devices fail, rendering the bow and arrow triumphant once again as essential — and fashionable — weaponry.

And bows and arrows will be in the Summer Olympics as usual — archery has been contested in 14 Olympiads since 1900, though perhaps with all the current publicity, it won’t be relegated to midnight coverage on some obscure cable channel this time. (Fun fact: Khatuna Lorig, a four-time Olympian, team bronze medalist and 2012 hopeful, taught Jennifer Lawrence, aka Katniss, how to shoot.)

Even the world’s top-ranked recurve archer and Olympic favorite Brady Ellison hopes it will help.”With all the things that have come out this year (in the movies) — that’s putting a lot of spotlight on archery with the Olympics coming up,” he said in a recent interview. “For a sport that doesn’t have that, it will catch a break and hopefully be able to do something with it.”

The pull of the bow

When you think about it, archery’s draw is hardly surprising. Whether it’s used for recreational field sports or game hunting, for Cub Scout badges or Renaissance fairs, the bow is a graceful, artistic mechanism, one that’s curved and sleek and feels good in the hand. Maybe it’s the simple stick and string of a longbow, or the flex and tension of a recurve style, but it has a primal quality, a return to antiquity (unless of course you go high-tech with composite bows, scopes, stabilizers and cool little LED lights that help you find your arrows in the dark).

Archery — mainly the low-tech kind — has often inspired poetry. Kipling spoke of avoiding Cupid’s arrows, and Longfellow famously phrased, “I shot an arrow into the air, it fell to earth I know not where.”

Clearly, it landed in the hearts of toxophilites — aka archery devotees — who are tickled at the recent trajectory of the sport’s popularity.

“It’s so exciting that there’s so much interest,” said a practically giddy Ken Closser on a recent afternoon at the Redwood Bowmen club in the Oakland hills. The group just had more than 150 people up at its Western Roundup in June, and numerous new requests for membership have come in. A similar increase has been reported at clubs across the nation.

One reason archery’s so accessible, spanning ages and genders, is that it’s a sport of form, not strength. It’s about mental acuity and technique. And besides, mastering the bow and arrow just looks downright cool. If you do it right, drawing the bow makes you stand up straight and proud, head up, eyes focused, posture optimal. Of course it helps to have a seasoned instructor at your side, such as Greg Tobler at the Diablo Bowmen club in Clayton, offering gentle reminders of such techniques. “There are as many things to remember as in a golf swing,” he said.

No kidding, especially for the beginner. Feet lined up to the target? Elbow back? Keep it back. Right hand at your mouth.

“Place your forefinger at the corner of your mouth, like you’re hooking a bass,” Tobler explains. Draw the bowstring with your fingertips, then release — don’t pluck — just let it go. And it goes, all right. It’s a powerful feeling, shooting an arrow into the air — even when it misses the target and lands, oh who knows where.

The bow’s origins

Historians say it’s not clear if the bow was invented in one location and culture, then spread through trade or war — something they call “diffusion” — or if it perhaps developed independently around the globe in a process dubbed “convergent evolution,” says Jonathan Roth, a history professor at San Jose State University who is currently writing a chapter on the bow for a book about weapons in world history.

“The bow is a relatively simple tool by today’s standards, but in the context of the Mesolithic era (10,000 to 5,000 BCE in Europe), it was revolutionary,” he writes. Roth says the bow was, in essence, the first machine, because it “stored the elastic energy created by the archer.”

“It was the ultimate in technology,” Tobler adds. “It was the nuclear bomb of its day.”

Great archers populate many world mythologies, too. In Greek lore, there was Apollo and Cupid. Long before Katniss, Artemis (or Diana, her Roman counterpart) was the can’t-miss goddess of the hunt.

And of course, this past century has seen hundreds of Robin Hood iterations in books, movies and TV shows — some serious, some super silly and others just bad (sorry, Russell Crowe).

We haven’t begun to hear the last of archery yet. Don’t forget, the second installment of “Hunger Games” will be released in 2013, with another to follow.

And you know there will be archery in “The Hobbit” movie, out in December. What else do you think brings down Smaug, that nasty gold-hoarding dragon? A Taser?

Staff writer Elliott Almond contributed to this story.

Fields of Dreams: Oral Historian Chronicles Migrant Civil Rights Movement

Oral Historian Chronicles Migrant Civil Rights Movement

Margo McBane conducts an interview for "Before Silicon Valley: A Migrant Path to Mexican American Civil Rights." (Robert Bain photo)

(Editor’s note: The following is an excerpt from the fall 2011 College of Social Sciences newsletter, “Together: Exploring What Can Be,” Michael Haederle, editorial consultant. )

Margo McBane led two lives in the early 1970s, dividing her time between studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and working at the United Farm Workers of America boycott house in San José.

As she got to know some of the older migrant workers, she started interviewing them about their experience, taking care to record it all on tape. She could hardly have known she was laying the groundwork for a lifelong love affair with Chicano oral history.

McBane, now a lecturer in the College of Social Sciences at San Jose State University, earlier this year received a $40,000 planning grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities for a traveling exhibit called, “Before Silicon Valley: A Migrant Path to Mexican American Civil Rights.”

The exhibit, which focuses on the experience of migrant workers in northern California between 1920 and 1960, will include a “living history character” portraying a female cannery worker, an online component and a booklet. It has already been booked into 32 sites around the country, McBane says.

The next step will be to secure a larger implementation grant to complete the project, she says.

In her career as a public historian, McBane has taught high school history, worked in cultural resource management and produced public radio documentaries. She received grants from the California Council in the Humanities and the Kellogg Foundation to produce an award-winning two-part radio program called “Talkin’ Farmwork Blues: An Oral History of California Farm Labor.”

In 2005, when KB Homes was preparing to tear down the old Del Monte cannery in San Jose, History San Jose hired McBane to produce an online documentary called “Cannery Life,” which included interviews, photos and videos with 15 former cannery workers who shared their experiences.

McBane meanwhile was contemplating San Jose’s unique role as a cultural center for Mexican immigrant workers in northern California, as well as east side San Jose resident Cesar Chavez’s role in co-founding the United Farm Workers. In the 1950s Chavez learned the art of community organizing from Fred Ross, who had trained in Chicago with Saul Alinsky, McBane says.

One day, McBane had a brainstorm. “I called the NEH and pitched that San José was the Birmingham of Mexican American civil rights,” she says. That led to her successful exhibit application.

The grant will help pay for McBane and her students to conduct a handful of interviews of the surviving pivotal players in the Chicano farm worker rights movement. A few interviews have been completed, but she would like to complete another six to eight.

“Labor doesn’t have much written about it from the worker perspective,” McBane says. “This is the history that hasn’t been told.”

Stephen Suleyman Schwartz

Middle East Freedom Forum Speaker: Stephen Suleyman Schwartz

Stephen Suleyman Schwartz

Stephen Suleyman Schwartz

Date: October 25, 2011

Time: 4 p.m.

Location: King 255/257

Summary: Scholars for Peace in the Middle East and Middle Eastern Studies present a Middle East Freedom Forum Speaker, Stephen Suleyman Schwartz, author of “The Two Faces of Islam” and “The Other Islam: Sufism and the Road to Global Harmony.” He will present “Freedom of Religious Choice:Islamic Views.” This talk is free and open to the public. For more information, or for disability accommodation, contact Dr. Jonathan Roth at 408-924-5505.

— Submitted by Professor of History Jonathan Roth.

Student vets visit with Sammy the SJSU mascot outside their student activities fair both.

With “Books to Baghdad,” Student Veterans Help Iraqi Universities

Student vets visit with Sammy the SJSU mascot outside their student activities fair both.

"Books to Baghdad" is one of many new efforts involving student vets. The Veteran Students Organization is connecting with members at student organization fairs and online. A class to be offered for the first time this fall will focus on the transition to civilian life. SJSU also recently formed a Veterans/Military Students Task Force. Major General Anthony L. Jackson, an SJSU alumnus now among the highest ranking African Americans in the U.S. Marine Corps, spoke at commencement in May.

By Pat Lopes Harris, Media Relations Director

This summer, Department of History Professor Jonathan Roth and student veterans teamed together to pack and mail 80 boxes of college textbooks to Iraq. The shipment, part of SJSU’s “Books to Baghdad” project, went to U.S. State Department Provincial Reconstruction Teams in Diyala and Basra. The teams will provide the materials to universities in those cities. Damian Bramlett, David Richardson and Mark Hanna, present or former members of SJSU’s Veteran Students Organization, have over the past several years boxed hundreds of books, all recent publications donated by professors and instructors. Since the boxes can be sent to an APO address in Iraq, domestic media rates apply, and postage is only about $15 a box.  While “Books to Baghdad” does not need more books, the group is asking for help covering the cost of future shipments. Please send checks to the Department of History, San Jose State University, One Washington Square, San Jose, CA, 95192-0117. Checks should be written to the Tower Foundation of SJSU, with “Books to Baghdad” in the memo line.

Student vets visit with Sammy the SJSU mascot outside their student activities fair both.

With "Books to Baghdad," Student Veterans Help Iraqi Universities

Student vets visit with Sammy the SJSU mascot outside their student activities fair both.

"Books to Baghdad" is one of many new efforts involving student vets. The Veteran Students Organization is connecting with members at student organization fairs and online. A class to be offered for the first time this fall will focus on the transition to civilian life. SJSU also recently formed a Veterans/Military Students Task Force. Major General Anthony L. Jackson, an SJSU alumnus now among the highest ranking African Americans in the U.S. Marine Corps, spoke at commencement in May.

By Pat Lopes Harris, Media Relations Director

This summer, Department of History Professor Jonathan Roth and student veterans teamed together to pack and mail 80 boxes of college textbooks to Iraq. The shipment, part of SJSU’s “Books to Baghdad” project, went to U.S. State Department Provincial Reconstruction Teams in Diyala and Basra. The teams will provide the materials to universities in those cities. Damian Bramlett, David Richardson and Mark Hanna, present or former members of SJSU’s Veteran Students Organization, have over the past several years boxed hundreds of books, all recent publications donated by professors and instructors. Since the boxes can be sent to an APO address in Iraq, domestic media rates apply, and postage is only about $15 a box.  While “Books to Baghdad” does not need more books, the group is asking for help covering the cost of future shipments. Please send checks to the Department of History, San Jose State University, One Washington Square, San Jose, CA, 95192-0117. Checks should be written to the Tower Foundation of SJSU, with “Books to Baghdad” in the memo line.

Peace rally sign "Justice for All"

February is African American History Month

By Amanda Holst
Photo by Keith Bryant

Peace rally sign "Justice for All"

This month's African American history month events include a freedom march.

Over the weekend, about 100 people demonstrated support for the principles of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at the Expanding My Visions Freedom March, launching San Jose State University’s annual celebration of African American History Month. The march was intended to promote support for cultural and ethnic diversity, equality and justice, and economic progress.

“Our basic goal is to help people understand that freedom and justice do not come free. You have to develop a commitment to make it happen, and work at it rather than wait for it to happen politically,” said Dr. Oscar Battle Jr., president of the African American Faculty and Staff Association.

AAFSA is hosting a variety of events throughout February to promote the achievements of African American faculty, staff and students, increase knowledge of African American contributions to society, and encourage support for King’s ideals in critical thinking in higher education.

Also, Emmanuel Baptist Church, Maranatha Christian Center, and Bible Way Christian Center will welcome Interim President Don W. Kassing and Vice President for Student Affairs Jason Laker for CSU Super Sunday on Feb. 13.

Schedule of Events

7 p.m. Feb. 8, KING 525: Learn about the relevance of Dr. King’s “Letter from the Birmingham Jail,” his message empowering congregations to seek justice while on Earth.

Noon, Feb. 16, Almaden Room, Student Union: Discuss African American male student development and implications for SJSU.

7 p.m. Feb. 16, KING 525: Explore the role of students in advancing civil rights.

7 p.m. Feb. 22, Morris Daily Auditorium: View a free encore screening of the award-winning documentary film, “Soul Sanctuary.”