Alumni of California State University, Los Angeles returned to campus on Saturday to reunite with former classmates, reminisce about the old days and celebrate 70 years of success at the University.
The All Alumni Reunion featured a day of activities that included sumptuous buffets with foods provided by alumni business owners, an outdoor concert, Golden Eagles athletics games and a tour of art exhibits at University galleries. The Oct. 28 gathering also featured the Class of 1967 50th Reunion and Half-Century Club induction ceremony. The event was among a number of major events held during the University's 70th anniversary.
“Coming back here, it’s just great. It feels like home,” said Donna Zero, who earned a master’s degree in education in 1976. “There’s a great energy here at this school.”
During a luncheon in the Golden Eagle Ballroom, President William A. Covino welcomed back the alumni and congratulated members of the Class of 1967 and earlier on their induction into the Half-Century Club.
Covino talked about the technological advances and societal changes that have occurred over the years. But the enterprising nature of Cal State LA students and the role of the University remain the same, the president added.
“Students today may seem different than you were—because of technology and social media, because of cultural shifts in our society,” Covino said. “But students today have the same fundamental dreams, hopes and goals that you had. And Cal State LA is to them what it was to you: a place where extraordinary change takes place, where new futures are written. Cal State LA is still a place where students are transformed.”
The keynote address was delivered by Terrence Roberts, a member of the Little Rock Nine, whose 1957 enrollment in segregated Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas, was a landmark in the Civil Rights Movement. Roberts earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Cal State LA in 1967.
Roberts credited the University with guiding him on his professional journey and honing his critical thinking skills. “That's what Cal State LA is famous for: helping you learn how to learn,” he said.
The event included two “Taste of L.A.” buffets featuring savory selections from Porto’s Bakery & Café, Gaviña Coffee and Baja Cali, which are alumni owned. Alumni also enjoyed an outdoor concert by the Cal State LA Commercial Music Ensemble, directed by faculty member Ross Levinson.
As alumni members mingled and enjoyed the day, some of them marveled at how the University had changed. They talked about the new buildings on campus, the major construction projects underway and the strategic partnerships with community and business organizations.
“I’m very happy about the accomplishments,” said Melvin Brewster, who graduated in 2003 with a bachelor’s degree in computer information systems. “And I’m proud to see the advancements over the years.”
Photos: Above, Terrence Roberts addressed fellow alumni in the Golden Eagle Ballroom during the All Alumni Reunion luncheon. Bottom, Cal State LA alumni celebrating the University's 70th anniversary at the All Alumni Reunion. (Credit: Gareth Mackay/Cal State LA)
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California State University, Los Angeles is the premier comprehensive public university in the heart of Los Angeles. Cal State LA is ranked number one in the United States for the upward mobility of its students. Cal State LA is dedicated to engagement, service, and the public good, offering nationally recognized programs in science, the arts, business, criminal justice, engineering, nursing, education, and the humanities. Founded in 1947, the University serves more than 28,000 students and has more than 245,000 distinguished alumni.
Cal State LA is home to the critically-acclaimed Luckman Fine Arts Complex, Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs, Hertzberg-Davis Forensic Science Center, Hydrogen Research and Fueling Facility, Billie Jean King Sports Complex and the TV, Film and Media Center. For more information, visit www.CalStateLA.edu.