Cal Poly

Orfalea College of Business

Portraits of Giving

Portraits of Giving


In their own words, members of the Orfalea College of Business community share what philanthropy means to them.

“All the work that goes into evolving the academic programs, the study abroad opportunities, the alumni mentoring — it all comes back to benefit the students. That’s what drives the Dean’s Advisory Council. Our meetings are focused on long-term strategy, and when we look back over three, four or five years, we see the positive impacts of our work. A student will walk into one of our meetings and share an amazing experience because of an opportunity a leader at Orfalea fought for. Our students are truly outstanding! As someone who’s given to this college, I can honestly say it makes me proud to know we’re putting the generosity of others to work in the right places. And at every meeting, we recognize there’s still so much we have yet to do to help our college prepare students to meet the ever-changing needs of the business environment.”

— Kris Yetter (Economics, ’85) President of the Dean’s Advisory Council and President of Promega Biosciences



“Studying abroad in Torino, Italy, and traveling throughout Europe was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. In four short months, I learned about the freedom of getting lost, the confidence in finding your way, and the beauty of other cultures. I’ve learned that friends can really become family, and that you can be thousands of miles away but still feel right at home. It’s crazy how much you can grow when you’re thrown out of your comfort zone, and without the generosity of Tim and Mardy Meadows, none of that would have even been possible for me.”

— Megan Johnson, marketing senior and recipient of the Christopher Meadows Memorial Study Abroad Scholarship


“This summer was a period of hyper-growth that has transformed our startup into an investment-ready company. Our team was able to develop a product, craft our message, build a following, and connect with other successful entrepreneurs. On paper, our startup received work space, $10,000 in seed funding from the CIE, and mentoring from the CIE staff and our lead mentor, but the SLO HotHouse Summer Accelerator program was so much more than that.”

— Maxwell Fong, marketing senior and co-founder of the startup Current Solutions


“The education and life lessons learned while I was at Cal Poly prepared me for a career that far exceeded my expectations. Establishing a scholarship fund for deserving Orfalea students has been my way of helping others achieve the education I received. It is my hope that today’s students will enjoy similar success and also establish additional scholarship funds in the future.”

— Lee Doble (Business Administration, ’68) Longtime donor to the Orfalea College of Business and Managing Director at Crystal & Company


“I thought I was going to have to take out more loans, but then I got the scholarship, and that really helped me out. I feel unbelievably grateful that I was the one chosen for this. I want to use it well and do right by the legacy that the scholarship honors. I want to leave my mark at Cal Poly.”

— Kara Rutherford, industrial technology student and 2016 recipient of the Nelson “Smitty” Smith Memorial Scholarship



“The Jacobsen Faculty Fellowship has helped me reflect on how valuable it has been to involve  students in my research and made me want to do more of that. So this year, I contacted some of our     alumni who are now completing their doctorates and invited them to write research with me. They were elated at the opportunity and all said yes. I feel I have gained smart, hard-working collaborators that I know and trust and who are also well trained. They feel connected to their alma mater and appreciate the confidence I have placed in them. It is a total win-win.”

— Economics Professor Eduardo Zambrano, 2015 Jacobsen Faculty Fellow



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