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Group of freshmen enter SFSU at head of class as Presidential Scholars



Matt Itelson
SFSU Office of Public Affairs & Publications
(415) 338-1743
(415) 338-1665


Press Release published by the Office of Public Affairs & Publications


Twenty-three top freshmen receive four-year scholarships worth up to $17,000

SAN FRANCISCO, August 16, 2004 -- Students with dreams of becoming social workers, chamber musicians and surgeons were recently tapped to join the San Francisco State University freshman class as Presidential Scholars.

The total value of the scholarship for each student is about $17,000 over four years. It is the University's most distinguished academic award for first-time freshmen.

The 23 students are among the more than 2,000 first-time freshmen at SFSU this fall.

Students in the Presidential Scholars program receive support for up to eight semesters of full tuition fees, aid for housing and textbooks, and priority course registration. They also take two general education courses together as a freshman cohort and attend special seminars and cultural events to develop academic skills and expand their intellectual experiences.

Students in this year's incoming class of Presidential Scholars are: Jessica Aguilar of Vacaville; Rachel Bauer of Palmdale; Tiffany Bui of Placentia; Nicole Calhoun of Long Beach; Trevor Cancilla of Roseville; Kevin Costello of Watsonville; Grace Duncan of Needles; Asha Elmore of San Bruno; Magdalena Fish of Oakley; Jordana Frishman of Truckee; Inbar Koppel of Sunnyvale; Ariana Lane-Lohse of San Diego; Ananda Le of Burlingame; Brittany McGregor of Vista; Jamie Molaro of Grass Valley; Kyle O'Neill of Rocklin; Courtney Oxsen, Sarah Papp and Karen Rudy of San Jose; Christopher Quock and Mikhail Yared of San Francisco; Cassandra Rodriguez of Patterson; and Marie Stitt of West Point.

Admission to the Presidential Scholars program is based on academic and personal achievement, extracurricular activities in high school and the community, leadership potential and the ability to express oneself effectively. It is open to first-time freshmen and California residents only. Most applicants have a grade-point average of 3.8 or higher and an SAT score of 1200 or higher.

Since SFSU President Robert A. Corrigan founded the program in 1995, many of its graduates have gone on to successful careers and prestigious graduate schools such as UCLA and Stanford University. Nick Krautter, of the incoming class of 1997, has started his own flourishing musician management company. Nelly Lau, class of 1998, received a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship in electrical engineering -- one of only 46 awarded in the nation -- and entered Stanford's doctoral program in electrical engineering last fall. John Dilley and Kit Fox, class of 1998, became close friends and made a short film that screened at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival.

"We are very proud of the Presidential Scholars," Corrigan said. "These are some of the best, brightest and most enthusiastic students in California. We are delighted to provide them access to a quality higher education."

The Presidential Scholars program is funded by million-dollar gifts from the Bernard Osher Foundation and Evergreen group founder and Chairman Y.F. Chang, as well as other smaller donations. An additional annual gift of $100,000 from Chang provides housing funds for students in their first year.

For details on the SFSU Presidential Scholars program, call (415) 338-2789 or visit:

One of the largest campuses in the California State University system, SFSU was founded in 1899 and today is a highly diverse, comprehensive, public and urban university.


NOTE: To arrange interviews with any of the Presidential Scholars, contact Matt Itelson of the SFSU Office of Public Affairs at (415) 338-1743 or

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Last modified April 20, 2007, by the Office of Public Affairs & Publications