Former Toros Reunite and Unite with other CSU Alums at Mega Mixer

Several California State University, Dominguez Hills alumni took part in a CSU Mega Mixer along with nearly 250 alumni from 10 CSU campuses at the House of Blues at Downtown Disney in Orange County on Nov. 13.

CSU Dominguez Hills director of Alumni and Family Programs Gayle Ball-Parker is flanked by fellow Toro alumnae Khaleah Bradshaw and Joy Masha.

“More than it being fun, I think it’s just a really good idea that the alums get together,” said CSU Dominguez Hills alumna Khaleah Bradshaw (Class of ’09, B.A., English literature). “Thaun Lam [director for the CSU Fullerton Alumni Association] mentioned that there’s over 2.6 million CSU alums, so it only makes sense that we network and create more of a tight-knit association.”

As with Bradshaw, who works as an admissions supervisor at CSU Dominguez Hills, many alumni attended not only to socialize with fellow former Toros, but for the opportunity to meet alums from CSU Fullerton, CSU Los Angeles, CSU Northridge, Cal Poly Pomona, CSU San Bernardino, CSU San Marcos, CSU Sacramento, CSU Monterey Bay, CSU Stanislaus, and Fresno State.

“I came here for networking and to see what the event was about,” said recent graduate Martin Ramirez (Class of ’12, B.S., marketing). “I had three or four people that just came up and started talking to me, and that wasn’t something I was expecting.”

The first-time alumni event attendee, who is looking to work in Los Angeles in the advertising or sports industry, came prepared to network with a supply of business cards. “These cards that I have are cards that I did when I was in my student chapter of the American Marketing Association,” Ramirez said.

As well as networking, alumni had the opportunity to connect with representatives of alumni associations at their alma mater, or alma maters for those that earned degrees from more than one CSU. Such was the case for Keith Hatcher (Class of ’10, M.A., multicultural education) who earned his bachelor’s in recreation and leisure studies from CSU Los Angeles. Hatcher, who regularly attends CSU Dominguez Hills alumni events, said he stays involved because he is appreciative of what the university has done for him.

“After I graduated in 2010, in 2011 they sent me a note and asked me if I would like to participate in this alumni [commencement] procession,” he recalled, adding that it was such an honor and motivational experience that he returned in 2012 and wouldn’t miss the chance to participate in the future.

The CSU Super Mega Mixers are events modeled after the highly successful CSU New York/Tri-State Alumni Reception, which began in 2011 as a way to connect alumni living on the east coast. The first west coast event was held in Arcadia in late 2011.

“Events like these reinforce the strength of the CSU Alumni network and they present opportunities for meaningful connections. Email and LinkedIn are powerful tools, but there’s something about meeting face-to-face,” said Gayle Ball-Parker (Class of ’78, B.A., psychology), director of Alumni and Family Programs at CSU Dominguez Hills. “It’s good for people to see what other CSU alums are doing. They are doing amazing things.”

For more information about the CSU Dominguez Hills Alumni Association and how to become involved, visit www.csudh.edu/alumni.

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