SOU Alumni News Archives

Evan Bell

Liberal Arts Degree Pays Off with Emmy Award

Evan Bell ’07, worked his way into a great job and cites his degree in history from SOU for launching his career. While growing up in the small I-5 town of Wolf Creek, just north of Grants Pass, Evan was a self-proclaimed history junkie and often had to get pried away from the History Channel to do chores.
Ben Fiscus

Alum’s Optimism and Enthusiasm is Contagious

They say that optimism and enthusiasm is contagious. Well, in the case of Ben Fiscus ’10, optimism is at the forefront of his attitude and outlook on life. Ben grew up in Grants Pass, the son of a law enforcement officer. He was around police all the time as a youngster and knew that someday, that would be his route in life as well.
Heather Bailey

Alumna’s Ashland to Stanford Experience Secures Silicon Valley Career

Heather Bailey ’12 grew up in Ashland and even had SOU alumna Carol Moody MS ’69 as her second and third grade teacher at Bellview Elementary School. Many young people avoid attending college in their hometown, seeking instead, to get away from where they grew up. But Heather knew about the strong reputation of the chemistry department at SOU then applied and earned a Presidential Academic Scholarship and just like that, she was staying home for her collegiate undergraduate experience.
Karolina Lavagnino

Alumna is a Dual Citizen Who Leads in the Community

You know an SOU international student loves the unique nature of the region when they stay after graduation and become an integral part of the community. For Karolina Lavagnino ’03 & MiM ‘06, it was a decision that she has always embraced. Karolina grew up in Bydgoszcz, Poland, a city of around 500,000. There, she studied English at the local university (Uniwersytet Kazimierza Wielkiego in Bydgoszcz) as an undergrad, earning a BA then earned her MA at Nicolaus Copernicus University in Torun.
Fred Choi

Alum Crossed the Pacific to Find A Life Changing Experience

Born and raised in Hong Kong, Fred Choi ’92 was about as far away from Ashland and Southern Oregon State College (SOSC) as one could get. But an acquaintance at home, who had attended SOSC, told him about the place and how special it was. At age 18, Fred took the plunge an ocean away and made the long journey to Ashland. It literally changed his life.
Angie Meza

Raider Alumna Returns to the Rogue Valley

For Angie Meza ‘15, growing up just outside of Los Angeles in Santa Clarita, CA, provided her enough curiosity and inquisitiveness to look beyond her own region to attended college. Angie graduated from high school at age 16 and was admitted to the University of Oregon and SOU. Both she and her family thought SOU would be a better fit because of its size and the quaint location in Ashland, particularly because she was younger than most high school graduates.
Josh Groesz

Raider Graduate Alum Continues to Serve

Service to his fellow human beings has always been at the forefront of Josh Groesz’ MS ’10 values. Josh grew up in Corvallis and at age 17 with his father along to vouch for him because of his young age, he went to the local Army National Guard recruiter and enlisted. 

A Young Alum’s Transcontinental Journey

Mylz Blake ‘17 has a unique coast to coast journey and entrepreneurial story to tell. Growing up in south central Los Angeles, he originally heard about SOU through football and visited Ashland the winter of 2012. After graduating from racially diverse Pacific Palisades HS, he made SOU his choice, which wasn’t an easy thing to do for a young black male.

Alumna Makes a Difference in Idaho

For Caitlin Jenkins Holesinsky ‘15, finding her way to SOU and helping those in need during the COVID-19 crisis, took unique paths. Born and raised in Anchorage, AK, Caitlin’s grandparents retired in the Rogue Valley, so by the age of eight, she was visiting often. Her parents also decided to retire there so after graduating from high school in Anchorage and attending the University of Alaska-Anchorage for a year, she made a practical yet comfortable move to be close to her family. Caitlin initially attended Rogue Community College, earning an associate’s degree in social science before transferring to SOU.