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Program SSOS – Staff

Meiling Wu: Principal Investigator and Project Director

Dr. Meiling Wu is Principal Investigator and Director of Program SSOS – Student Service Operation for Success at CSUEB, a five-year U.S. Department of Education AANAPISI Grant. She is Professor and Coordinator of Chinese and Japanese Programs of Department of Modern Languages and Literature, was the Department summer Chair and was the co-chair of Asian/ Pacific Islander Faculty and Staff Association from 2006-2010. She was the PI and PD of Pashto and Dari Programs at CSUEB, a CSU Strategic Language Institute, sponsored by U.S. Department of Defense. Dr. Wu serves on many faculty governance committees at CSUEB, including Chairing the Committee on Budget and Resource Allocation (2011-13). She also served as the Selection Committee for the California Pre-Doctoral Program (from CSU to UC graduate programs) and as the Chair of Mandarin Lower Division Transfer Programs (from Community Colleges to the CSUs) for the Office of CSU Chancellor.

 Growing up multilingual, (paternal Mandarin Chinese, maternal Japanese and local Min/Wu dialects) and receiving higher education from the United States, Dr. Wu is the scholar of East Asian languages, cultures, and literature; she has taught in both public and private sectors of higher education system in the United States. Born to a family that has had an international lumber business enterprise in Borneo (Indonesia and Malaysia), Singapore, China, Taiwan and Japan, Dr. Wu has been a frequent visitor to Southeast and Northeast Asia and is familiar with managing a large budget. Dr. Wu received her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from SUNY-Binghamton and fulfilled 3 foreign language and one classical language requirements in Latin, Chinese, Japanese, and French.  She has won many awards, including CSUEB Research Grants, CSU Wang Family Faculty Award, and the Research Fellowship from Cornell University. She was awarded the First Prize for her short story from Central Daily News of Taiwan.

Kim Geron:Co-Principal Investigator and SSOS Retention Coordinator

Dr. Kim Geron is a Full Professor and Chair of the CSUEB Political Science Department. He teaches courses in public budgeting, public personnel management, bureaucratic politics and administrative law, and public policy analysis courses in labor and immigration law. He co-authored The Snake Dance of Asian American activism: Community, Vision, and Power. Professor Geron has also published articles on Asian Americans in the journal, Social Problems, and has several book chapters that study APIs.

 Other relevant positions and memberships that Professor Geron has held include serving as the current Alameda County Chapter President of the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA) and he sits on the community advisory board of Asian Community Training, which provides leadership development training for Asian Pacific students at San Francisco Bay Area universities. At CSUEB, Professor Geron has served in a variety of advisory roles to student organizations at CSUEB, including political science club advisor. He has been an active member of the Asian/Pacific Islander Faculty and Staff Association and served as co-chair of APIFSA from 2003-2007.

 The responsibilities for AANAPI Retention Coordinator are: to identify and assist the SSOS students of all 3 categories, particularly work with the faculty/peer mentors to closely monitor the priority service student's progress, to supervise newly employed student tutors/mentors, and to encourage the well-performing AANAPI students to pursue higher educational degrees and scholarship for graduate schools. The Retention Coordinator will also foster students to apply for SSOS/APIFSA Student Scholarship.

SSOS Faculty, Staff and Volunteers:

Annie Hoang: Administration & Data Management

Annie Hoang graduated from California State University, East Bay and received a BA in Political Science with an option in Pre-Law. Before she attended, she was a student College of Alameda trying to figure out her major. She went from Pharmacy to Veterinarian and finally decided that Political Science was what she wanted to study in. After transferring to California State University, East Bay, she became one of the students in the very first SSOS cohort 2011-2012. Annie was the 1st generation in her family to attend college.  Her parents are Chinese Vietnamese from North Vietnam; however, she does not know the Vietnamese language as she speaks Cantonese and English. In 2012, Annie started working for SSOS as a Student Administration Assistant and after she graduated she started working as the Administrative Support and Data Management for SSOS. SSOS is currently located in Project Soar’s old office, which Annie is also a Project Soar Alumni.


My-Lan Huynh: SSOS Student Leadership Instructor

My-Lan Huynh is currently working in the Student Life Office as the Orientation Coordinator. In this role, she serves as a club advisor, as a coordinator for the Transfer, Freshman, and Family Orientation, and as the main supervisor to the Orientation Team. Her background and training came from UCLA, in which she received her graduate degree and worked for UCLA's Alumni Association and Residential Life. My-Lan has dedicated her career to empowering and developing students as they pursue their dream of higher education. She is involved in SSOS as the instructor of the REC 2500 class that aims to develop a student’s leadership skills.


 Andrea Lum: SSOS Public Relations Coordinator                                                                                                                                                  

Andrea Lum has been with Cal State East Bay since 2006 and is currently the Executive Assistant to the Chief of Staff in the President's Office.  Andrea is committed to supporting underrepresented students to achieve academic success in college. Previously, she worked as the Asian Pacific American academic advisor at St. Mary's College and served as the staff advisor to the Asian Pacific American Student Association.  After receiving her master’s degree in Education from Stanford University, she worked at Foundation for a College Education, a non-profit in East Palo Alto dedicated to working with students and their families to prepare for and graduate from college.  Andrea is a board member of East Bay Charter Connect and previously served on the boards of Oasis Charter High School and the Asian Business League of San Francisco.


Timothy Druley: SSOS Website Project Coordinator

Timothy Druley, Web Developer. Timothy has over ten years of experience working with various web technologies within the area of Information Technology. Over six of those years have been working at California State University, East Bay. Timothy has worked for multiple divisions within the University, supporting a wide variety of projects and addressing the technical challenges and business goals of Faculty, Staff and Students. Currently Timothy is a member of Web Services, which supports the entire University, as well as the Web Coordinator for the Student Service Operation for Success Program.


Denise Wong: SSOS Mentor Coordinator

Denise Delumen-Wong is the coordinator of the SSOS Peer Mentoring Program. She is a full time coordinator and counselor for the College of Science Student Service Center. Prior to this, she served as EOP counselor for 12 years. Other relevant experiences include being part of the APIFSA and APIASF. She currently co-presented in the 2014 Mentoring Conference held in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

 Born in the Philippines, Denise is multilingual (able to communicate in Tagalog, Mandarin and Chinese dialect Fukien). She arrived in the US almost 30 years ago. She earned her Bachelors degree in Developmental Psychology from California State University, Los Angeles and her Masters degree in Counseling (emphasis in Adult and Career Development) from California State University, Hayward.

 As the coordinator of the SSOS Peer Mentoring Program, Denise works closely with 11 mentors and 1 senior mentor through various training activities as well as developing workshops, events and activities for the mentees in the program.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

Deborah Hansana: SSOS Event Leadership Coordinator

Deborah Dorffi Hansana is a Hayward native and an alumna of Cal State East Bay (Hayward) with a Bachelor of Arts in Human Development, minors in Psychology, Women's Studies, and Filipino & Filipino-American Studies. Her family is from the Philippines (Tacloban, Leyte) and she has family roots in Finland and Spain. She is a first-generation college student and completed a Master of Arts degree in Education, with an emphasis in College Student Personnel, from San Jose State University. She currently serves the CSUEB campus as the Veterans Affairs Coordinator, SSOS Event Leadership Coordinator, APIFSA Staff Chair, Club Advisor to various student clubs, as well as a Fitness Instructor at CSUEB's Recreation & Wellness Center.


Siolotoi Ti

Siolotoi “Toi” Ti was born 1990 in the village of Vaitogi, American Samoa (AS) to parents Leuaea Kirisimasi Ti and Ana Ti. She is the oldest of five children. She attended Lupelele Elementary School on the islands of AS until the age of 12 and continued her education in San Jose, CA where she attended John Muir Middle School and Gunderson High School. Siolotoi has been living on her own in Hayward since the age of 18 when she attended Cal State East Bay as a freshman in Fall 2008. She graduated in Summer 2012 with a B.A. in Sociology and Social Services. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Social Work at Cal State East Bay and will be graduating in the upcoming quarter Spring 2014.

As a first generation college graduate, Siolotoi acknowledges the many challenges faced by Pacific Islanders in higher education as evident by being the only Samoan student in her Master’s program and one of the few Pacific Islanders in possibly all of the graduate programs combined here at Cal State East Bay. In addition to her role as a Senior Mentor for the S.S.O.S Program, she also interns at Fremont Hospital while simultaneously maintaining full time status as a student and an active Board member for the Asian Pacific Islander Social Work Association for her graduate program. She credits much of her success to the many prayers and countless blessings from her Grandmother Lupe Talolo whom recently passed in October 2013. Upon completion of her Master’s degree, Siolotoi is planning on pursuing her licensure as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the future. She is utterly grateful for S.S.O.S because it allows her to contribute to the API community through mentoring and advocating for its youth to pursue and complete higher education. 

SSOS Faculty:

Shiori Greller: Japanese Instructor

I have been teaching Japanese across all levels at CSUEB since 2006. Additionally, I teach at Diablo Valley College in Pleasant Hill, and previously worked at UC Berkeley. I received my B.A. in English literature from Kwassui Women’s College in Nagasaki, Japan before arriving in the U.S. I then completed my M.A. in teaching at San Francisco State University in 2006. I am also an adviser for the Japanese Culture Club (JCC) at CSUEB, which explores both traditional and pop culture through various media and demonstrations. In addition to that, I assist in public relations for APIFSA (Asian/Pacific Islander Faculty and Staff Association). I love engaging students every quarter in the classroom, but it is also a pleasure to get to know them through extracurricular events.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       


Huitzu Lu: Mandarin Chinese Instructor

Huitzu Lu received her B.A. major in History with minor in Chinese Language and Culture at National Taiwan University. She later obtained her M.A. and Ph.D. in East Asian Languages and Cultures with specialties in pre-modern Chinese culture and literature at University of Arizona. She has taught Chinese as a foreign language and developed Chinese curriculum at university level for more than 10 years. Before joining Modern Languages and Literatures Department at California State University, East Bay, she taught various Chinese language courses at U.S. institutions such as University of Arizona, Foothill College, Defense Language Institute, and University of California, Berkeley. Other than Chinese language instruction, she also taught Chinese civilization and history, classical Chinese and Chinese religious tradition at Peking University, University of Arizona and Pomona College.  Her current research interests are focused on the integration of Chinese culture and language education as well as Chinese immersion education.   

Ann Fajilan: Theatre Arts 2211 Instructor

Professor Ann Fajilan teaches Solo Performance, Theatre for Social Justice, Directing & Creative Vision, and infuses diversity issues into everything she breathes.  In 2012 she was one of the 100 Most Influential Filipinas in the United States/ Innovative & Thought Leader category.  She is also a Kennedy Center’s Excellence in Education recipient.

Her students are currently working on original theatre works focusing on the stigma of mental health. She is currently spearheading a collective dramatization of Filipino Bridge Generation characters as part of The Legacy Project that will be presented at CSUEB on May 10, 2014.

Sartaz Aziz : English 2600 Instructor

 I came to the United States from Bangladesh in 1979. I completed two Master’s degrees (in English and Comparative literature) and a M. Phil. degree in English.

I have been teaching at California East Bay since 1995. I teach a number of composition and literature courses for the English Department, and occasionally teach courses for the Ethnic Studies Department, Human Development Department, and Women’s Studies Program.

Colleen Fong: Ethnic Studies 2500 Instructor

 Colleen Fong taught the first Asian American Studies course when the Department of Ethnic Studies was established in 1983-84.  In the same year she began participation in the Chancellor’s campus-wide program to “multiculturalize” the curriculum and in the Asian American staff and faculty organization.  In 1990, she received a tenure track position in the Department of Ethnic Studies and remains involved in a variety of endeavors so all students feel they belong on campus and their life experiences are legitimized, including bringing films, performances, and guest speakers and coauthoring Guide to the Pronunciation of Asian Pacific Names. 

Nilofar Sami: Sociology 3999 Instructor

 I am a Research Psychologist at UC Berkeley Institute of Human Development and my research and intervention work focuses on low-income, ethnic minority and immigrant students often facing challenges that make it difficult to continue to stay engaged in school and successfully achieve their academic goals.  Multi-cultural, interdisciplinary, and collaborative approaches are the hallmarks of my work.  I am collaborating across universities (CSU East Bay, UC Davis, and Cal Poly) to develop, implement, and evaluate a mentoring program.  The undergraduate peer mentors will be paired with Afghan youth in the community to provide socioemotional support and academic guidance to promote these youth’s pathway to college.  In return, the undergraduate students will gain mentorship skills as well as community service experience.  In addition, my work focuses on supports that promote the adjustment of underserved ethnic minority students into an accelerated school – for which I was honored by receiving the Chancellor’s Award for Community Service.  I am also a part-time adjunct faculty at California State University, East Bay (CSUEB) teaching a course in the Department of Sociology and Social Services focused on the impact of immigration and resettlement experiences on Afghan refugee youth and their families and its relationship to academic success, college pathway, civic engagement, and socio-emotional well-being of these youth.  

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