West Coast – CAS in the Heart of Silicon Valley

Posted on: September 28, 2012

Palo AltoLast Thursday, I attended a wonderful event in Palo Alto hosted by alumna Sherry Harmon (’75 CAS) and John Willison. It was a lovely evening with a group of almost 40 CAS alum, and we were surrounded by excellent food and great conversation about what is new in the college and the world of communication.  Guests were particularly keen to discuss our progress with new technology, gaming, social media, the Media Sandbox, and health communication research.  There was also much interest in our current students and how they will be changing the communication landscape.
Sherry was one of our 2011 Outstanding Alumni award recipients, and we consider John as an “Honorary Alumnus” given his willingness to dive into the college! They have been so generous to the college, supporting the CAS Strategic Opportunities Fund, connecting us to national funders, and sharing their industry perspective with faculty and students. 
It was terrific to get to see our west coast alumni. One alum, Victor Befera, who graduated in’49 with a degree in journalism, was in attendance. Victor’s career is outstanding with great experience in the journalism, advertising and public relations fields. In many ways, he was well ahead of his time and would be a natural fit into today’s Media Sandbox! This gathering was his first MSU event in 63 years and we won’t let it be his last. Also in attendance was the president of the MSU Alumni Association in the San Francisco Bay Area, Justin Bugajski.  John and Heather Hill are enjoying the whirlwind of John's dynamic career with LinkedIn.  And, Kim and Tyrone Willingham were kind enough to delve into some sports history with me.
Many of our students venture out to California after graduation, so it’s always great to visit our Spartan network there and catch up with all the exciting things everyone is doing.
A big thanks to Sherry and John for hosting the event and to everyone for coming. I can’t wait to visit again soon!

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