Joyce Gattas, the dean of the College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts, is regularly in the community talking about the work of San Diego State University faculty and the impact of SDSU students. Given the opportunity to better understand the work of some of the students in the college, Gattas literally jumped.
Recently in Perris, Calif., Gattas, along with several educators from Southern California universities, had the opportunity to jump out of a plane with the U.S. Army’s Golden Knights parachute squad. Two and a half miles above Perris, at 13,500 feet, Gattas and her tandem partner, Greg, jumped out of a plane and roared toward earth at 120 miles per hour. The whole experience lasted about five minutes.
“Once the parachute opens, the experience slows down and I was able to look around and marvel at the beauty of it all,” Gattas said. “Greg (her Army instructor) is very talented. I wasn’t at all worried. I would do it again!”
PSFA is home to three military units — Air Force, Army and Navy — each providing military education opportunity through ROTC leadership programs. She is familiar with military operations, customs and ceremonies. This opportunity gave her the chance to experience the work done by U.S. Army Parachute Team.
“In preparing for the jump, I was fortunate to spend time training, working and interacting with the young men and women who serve,” Gattas said. “I have such pride and respect for the work done by our military. All of us at SDSU are so proud to have military men and women that are students on our campus.”
About PSFA and ROTC
The College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts works with other college campuses in the region to educate and serve nearly 500 midshipmen and cadets. The ROTC programs are designed to offer students a glimpse of military life before they enter active duty. Many students use their on campus experience to help them decide upon a career path prior to active duty.