Fullerton College Centennial


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What brought you or your family to Fullerton or Orange County?

I've lived in Orange County for my whole life. My parents were raised in Long Beach and Lakewood. When they were married they moved to the City of Orange.

Explain why you chose to study/work at Fullerton College.

I initially chose Fullerton College because my twin brother, Christopher, planned on attending Santiago Canyon College and I wanted to try to find my own identity and go somewhere else for school. I did not know any students at Fullerton, so it seemed to be a great fresh start and beginning to adulthood.

In what areas of college life were/are you engaged?

In the beginning, I chose to only go to class and not get involved in extra curricular activities. A couple years into attending, I went through a rough break up of a relationship and decided to go study abroad with Fullerton College to Florence, Italy in the Fall of 2002. It felt like another great new beginning. After returning from Italy and studying art history, I knew that I needed to surround myself in the arts. I needed to get back into theater and look for a way to find people who were similar to me to build a career in Entertainment. That is when I saw that there were going to be auditions for "Cabaret". This was the one show that I saw when I was little at a local dinner theater that I really made a connection to. It felt like fate. So I literally just showed up (semi unprepared) and was embraced right away by the department. I had never felt more a part of something big than when I became a part of the Theater Arts Department.

Describe what the college was like and your principal interests during your year(s) at the college.

Fullerton College had an amazing sense of inclusion. All of the students seemed to get along and there was a sense of establishing your place in the world and focus on being a positive contributor to the community. I did not find my principal interest until returning from studying abroad and giving into my love of theater and the arts. Initially, I wanted to get a degree and training in something that would "make a career" for me (e.g. Business). Once I gave in, I realized that I need not suppress the things that help me express myself and make me happy because in happiness there is life. It is about being passionate in your craft and not "building a career".

During your time at Fullerton College, who were people you had friendships with, were inspired by, or in some way made a difference in your time here, and why?

I was able to make some fantastic friendships through Fullerton College. Many of those people I still am in contact with. Stephen John, Aja Bell, Kelly Eder, Kelly Fullerton, John Goodson, Christine (Martin) Peterson, Courtney Caplan, and Tricia Camacho. Those are just a few examples. Gary Krinke was a person who really helped drive my participation in the program. He was the one who cast me as the Emcee in "Cabaret" which helped me sort of fall into all that the Theater Arts Department had to offer. I feel forever in debt to him for showing me my strengths in what I could bring to the stage. He was EXTREMELY difficult to cope with in a director at the time. What I learned was that answers aren't (and shouldn't) always be given. One should make a choice, believe in it, understand it, and see what the outcome can be. It may not be the right choice, both in life and on stage, but it will foster a lesson either way. That is the kinds of lessons that Fullerton College taught me. I also very much respected the entire Theater Arts staff. Gary Krinke, Mela Hoyt-Heydon, Steve Pliska, Bob Jensen, Jim Book, Jo Monteleone, & Chuck Ketter. They each had a level of approachable professionalism that drew me further and further into what the department had to offer. I got my degree from UCI but I found my network and education from Fullerton College.

What were some of the biggest changes or most significant events that took place during your time at the college?

I attended when the theater department was booming. There were many strong performers and contributors and excellent work was coming out of every angle. I don't believe any major changes took place until after I had moved on to UCI.

Please tell us one story that gives us insight into your experiences at Fullerton College.

When I came into the Theater Arts department I think that I started off being an un-welcomed visitor. I landed a major lead role for the spring musical ("Cabaret") and I hadn't even taken an acting class at the school. I was a nobody. It was very clear that I stole an opportunity from someone who had been working for weeks for that role. What was amazing about this group of people was that it didn't take long before they completely enveloped me in their community. The entire experience felt so professional from the way rehearsals were run, to costume/makeup fittings, to performances. I felt like a star. The show ended up being a huge hit and to this day my fellow cast members from the show still reminisce from that time.

What advice do you have for our current students?

Get involved. One of my major regrets in my early college life was that I just went to class and went home. Once I found my niche, my life immediately changed both socially and intellectually. I was able to connect with people and learn. I found ME at Fullerton College.

What impact did your experiences at Fullerton College have on the rest of your life/career and how?

I am currently working as an Entertainment Manager for the Disneyland Resort. Everything that Fullerton College has taught me, I put to use each day. The emphasis to treat each person as a professional and a pro in their craft has been an important lesson. When people feel valued they thrive...that's how this school has made me feel.

"Get involved. I was able to connect with people and learn. I found ME at Fullerton College."

Year of Birth:


Department of Specialty:


Dates/Years at Fullerton College:

2000-2004 (I was a part of the theater department from 2002-2004)


Bronwyn Dodson Scholarship

Most Promising Newcomer 2002

Actor of the year 2002 & 2003

2 American College Theatre Festival Irene Ryan Scholarship Nominations