Meet the UNIV 100 Faculty
Dr. Michael Biesiada
I am originally from Las Vegas, Nevada. I enjoyed my hometown so much, I earned a Ph.D. in Public Affairs from UNLV. I am currently a Research Analyst in the Office of Assessment and Institutional Effectiveness and will be serving as an Academic Senator for the 2019-2020 academic year.
I am teaching University 100 because it is one of the most important foundational courses that students can take to ensure their college success. In fact, I taught a similar first-year experience course at the Lee Business School for several years prior to coming to CSUF. Therefore, I greatly appreciate the value that the first-year experience course brings to the university curriculum.
One of my favorite things to do in my spare time is to go for long runs on the beach. I find exercise as a way to give me a nice work-life balance.
I earned my Bachelor of Arts in Leisure Management from the University of West London – London, UK. I successfully worked for over 15 years in various management roles in the Health & Fitness Industry in the UK – managing a vast array of different sports venues and fitness clubs. After winning a national writing competition I got to intern for 3 months in the USA – the travel bug had been activated! I decided to forgo a great job and career to travel around the world (by myself) for 14 months.
In the USA, I continued my career in fitness and leisure management, most recently as the Business Manager at the Student Recreation Center at CSUF. In 2015, I moved into an administrator role at CSUF in the College of Education as the confidential support to the Dean of the College. This fall, I start a new role as the Global Titans Center Leader for International Programs. I graduated with an MBA in Management from CSUF in May 2018.
In my spare time, I ride motorcycles with my family, watch my girls (8 & 10) play basketball and enjoy finding some R & R for myself. I’m excited to get back into teaching – having taught for over 10 years in the UK in different topics – it is always rewarding to see knowledge I have gained being passed onto others to use in their own life path. See you in class!
Dr. Shelly Hsu
Dr. Shelly Hsu is a passionate student advocator, educator and researcher. She currently serves as Articulation Officer at CSU Fullerton. Prior to join CSU Fullerton, she also worked at UC, Riverside, and Ohio University. She was raised and born in Taiwan, then moved to the U.S.A in 2005. She had the B.A. in Real Estate & Built Environment from National Taipei University, M.Ed. in Cultural Studies in Education from Ohio University, and the Ed.D in Educational Leadership from California State University, Fullerton.
I enjoy working with students and learning from you in OUR classroom. UNIV 100 is a great navigator to start your college journey and I cannot wait to share this unique experience with you.
When I am free, I enjoy doing yoga, watching a movie with my husband, trying new restaurants, and travel.
Ryan Hunt is California State University, Fullerton alum, finishing his Master's Degree in History in 2011. During this time, he developed a love for culture and traveling; participating in a study abroad program in Berlin, Germany and a paid internship at the German Historical Association in Washington, DC. Since then, Ryan has traveled to Prague, Brussels, Paris, Austin, Denver, Des Moines, Atlanta, Chicago, Seattle, New York City, and Hawaii. He currently teaches History at several community colleges in the Southern California area. Ryan Hunt has been teaching and helping students in the Fullerton First Year Program since 2012.
Ryan Hunt has taught University 100 for 6 years. As a community college transfer student to CSUF who utilized the hands-on teaching approach from CSUF professors. Ryan wants to give back to the new Titan community and help students achieve their personal, professional, and academic goals.
Thank you! Can't wait to see everyone soon!
Dr. Christine Mayfield
I've been teaching in the Department of Elementary and Bilingual Education at CSUF http://ed.fullerton.edu/edel/ since 2000. I was an elementary school teacher for ten years before I came here. I've always loved my students, no matter what their age or interest. If you are thinking about being a teacher someday, be sure to let me know! It's a great profession! I realize how critical it is to get a solid start to college. Students need an advocate who will support their ability to balance school, work, family, social life and new-found freedom. I look forward to supporting students on this journey.
I like to complete marathons. I appreciate the perseverance it takes and the pride I feel when it's over. I also LOVE to bake...no matter what day it is.
Dr. Judith Pérez
Dr. Judith Pérez is an interdisciplinary scholar with a PhD in Educational Leadership and Policy from the University of Utah. Her research areas include educational leadership, Chicana/x & Latina/x racialized educational experiences, The First Year Experience, Chicana feminist thought, Latina/o Critical Theory (LatCrit), Critical Race Service Learning, the K-20 educational pipeline, university-school-community engagement and Chicana M(other)work. I enjoy family movie nights and hanging out with familia eating my mom's homemade food.
As a first generation undergrad, I remember how scared I was my first semester--year of college. The first semester in college is critical, I hope to do my best in helping first year students curiously navigate their college experience.
Education has always played an important role in my life. I hold a total of four degrees including a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History from the University of La Verne and a Master of Arts degree from California State University, Fullerton.
Since graduation I have been fortunate to be a faculty member at California State University, Fullerton, University of La Verne, Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, Chaffey College, and Golden West College. My first book was published in 2017: Art Appreciation: An Introduction to the Formal Elements and Mediums (Cognella Academic Press).
Being an instructor for University 100 is important to me because I want to help students effectively face and overcome the challenges of being a first-year college student. To help them through obstacles where I had personally failed. I was a college dropout (not once, but twice!) and have battled through those semesters on “academic probation.” If I had had a class, such as University 100, I know I would have been much more successful in my early attempts at college.
For fun you can find me at rare and used bookstores throughout the western United States. I am an avid reader and collector of books. The subjects that I am interested in vary widely from art and history to detective noir and weird fiction. Some of my favorite authors include Raymond Chandler, Ross MacDonald, H.P. Lovecraft, Ross King, and Alberto Manguel.
I also hold a real estate license and am concerned with the preservation of historical architecture that is being threatened by the redevelopment and repurposing of land in Southern California.
This is my first year as an adjunct faculty member at the Department of Secondary Education. It is an honor to teach prospective Orange County teachers. It is relevant work, given that I am a Program Specialist for the STEM and Humanities Unit at the Orange County Department of Education (OCDE). As an educational leader, I provide professional learning opportunities to secondary school teachers and administrators throughout the county.
Prior to working at OCDE, I worked with students at the middle and high school levels for 25 years, teaching both English Language Development (ELD) and English Language Arts (ELA) in the Los Angeles Unified School District. I also mentored secondary ELA/ELD and content area teachers and have been involved in numerous curriculum development and parent engagement committees. I also taught English Composition and Literature at my alma maters, East Los Angeles College and Cal State Los Angeles.
I look forward to working with students enrolled in my University 100 course because I believe that together we could build a constructive learning environment that will foster individual agency and work collectively to thrive in an increasingly volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous world.
I revel in spending time with my wife, four children, and suegros (in-laws). We travel and engage in meaningful conversations. I also enjoy reading, writing creatively, and road biking. As a cyclist, I live by my own maxim that we should all look critically at the road ahead, for it is as abstract as it is concrete.
Dr. Jim Ruby
I am Dr. Jim Ruby, a Professor in the Department of Human Services (http://hhd.fullerton.edu/husr/). I have been at CSUF for 11 years and love the diversity of our students and our faculty. I did my undergraduate degree at Western Kentucky University, my masters at Northeastern Illinois University, and my doctorate at Loyola University, Chicago.
I was born in Kentucky, but lived in Chicago for many years. I am married to Nanci Carol Ruby, a part-time faculty member here at CSUF who also teaches a section of UNIV 100. I have two sons, ages 26 and 19. I am a trained mental health counselor and school counselor, so at my core, I am a helping professional who finds joy in helping others reach their goals. That is why I am excited to be a part of the UNIV 100 experience. I want to help you be as successful as possible in your educational journey at CSUF. I truly believe that #TitansReachHigher! I also believe that strong beginnings predict strong endings, so my goal is to help you have a strong beginning to your college education.
For fun, I love to make music. I sing and play guitar (and might even make you sing with me in class!). I also love to go hiking, go to the beach, and spend time with friends and family.
I am looking forward to meeting you and working with you in UNIV 100!
Nanci Carol Ruby
Nanci Carol Ruby received her MFA from The Theatre School at DePaul University. She currently teaches Psychodrama for the Human Services Department at CSUF and teaches in Television Production at Chapman’s Dodge College of Film and Media Arts. She holds professional memberships in Actors Equity Association (AEA) and Women in Film, Los Angeles (WIF). Nanci Carol has directed, acted, and collaborated with theatres across the nation and has served as an agent-recommended, on-camera acting coach throughout her career. Her students have played roles on television, Broadway and major motion pictures. She is married to CSUF Human Services Professor, Dr. James Ruby.
I am excited to join the First Year Experience Team! As an artist and teacher in multiple mediums, I have spent my life creating safe space and fostering creativity. We all have an important story to tell, unique perspectives to share, and I believe, we thrive when we are intentional in encouraging each other. I look forward to creating community and supporting Titan Student success! #TitansReachHigher
I am fortunate to have “fun” at work; I love what I do – working in ensemble to tell stories. I love seeing students realize their full potential. When I am not at work, I can be found on a yoga mat or a paddle board (not simultaneously) or rehearsing/performing with the band, Comfort Food.