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Tuesday, September 26, 2023

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Civil, construction and environmental engineering professor Sahar Ghanipoor Machiani is a person to watch in 2017. Civil, construction and environmental engineering professor Sahar Ghanipoor Machiani is a person to watch in 2017.

People to Watch in 2017

These SDSU students, faculty and staff will be making headlines in the coming year.
By Gina Jacobs

If you thought 2016 was a big year for San Diego State University due to the major research discoveries, NCAA records and record-high graduation rates, wait until you see what 2017 has in store.

Here are 10 people to watch in 2017. Stay tuned for more in-depth stories on these standouts as the year progresses.

Class of 2021

SDSU’s incoming freshman class was selected from a pool of more than 83,000 applications, and will begin classes in August.

Sahar Ghanipoor Machiani
Sahar Ghanipoor Machiani
Sahar Ghanipoor Machiani, Professor of Civil, Construction & Environmental Engineering

Machiani will serve as executive director of SDSU’s University Transportation Center, a consortium with the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute and the Texas A&M Transportation Institute that just received a five-year, $28 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Dana Ivgy, Visiting Israeli Artist in Residence

Ivgy, an Israeli actress, will serve as a visiting lecturer at SDSU this spring. An Israeli Academy of Film and Television Best Actress award winner, Ivgy will teach classes in both Theatre, Television and Film and Jewish Studies thanks to the Visiting Israeli Artists program funded by the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation.

Mary Curran
Mary Curran
Mary Curran, Chair, The Campanile Foundation

Curran takes the reins as board chair of The Campanile Foundation just as the university has reached the $750 million goal of The Campaign for SDSU. She will lead the way as the university continues its efforts to secure matching funds for Ron Fowler’s $25 million gift in November to the now renamed Fowler College of Business.

Philip Greiner, Director, School of Nursing

Through the leadership of Greiner, SDSU’s School of Nursing will be one of the first to use new virtual-reality and hologram technology that allows nursing students to simulate real-world challenges in the nursing environment through “mixed reality.” Students are set to start using the Microsoft HoloLens this spring.

Ahkeel Whitehead
Ahkeel Whitehead
Ahkeel Whitehead, SDSU kinesiology student, Paralympian

Whitehead competed on the U.S. Paralympics men’s track and field team at the 2016 Paralympic Games. While he did not win any medals in Rio de Janiero, his passion for competitive athletics led him to develop the Aztec Adaptive Sports Program which in the coming year will provide other kinesiology students with the opportunity to work with physically disabled athletes.

Allison Langley, SDSU engineering student

The winner of this year’s Zahn Challenge, Langley is the founder of Chrysalis, a skin monitoring system and mobile application. Chrysallis makes it easier for people to proactively track changes over the surface of their bodies and aid physicians in the early detection of skin cancer with a mobile application. Langley and her team earned first place in the Launch Track, winning a $2,000 cash prize for the company’s further development.

Todd Summer, CEO, Aztec Shops

Todd Summer
Todd Summer
Newly appointed CEO of Aztec Shops
, Summer has already found success by as director of Campus Stores. Under his guidance, SDSU has been a leader in print rental and digital textbook programs. In this new role, Summer will ensure SDSU’s auxiliary continues to provide students with access to the most current trends, top-line merchandise and high-quality dining options, including the new offerings at South Campus Plaza opening this spring.

Jack Doheny and Jake Solomon, SDSU engineering students

Doheny and Solomon are the high-energy founders of Bold Brew Coffee – what they call a natural alternative to energy drinks that’s aimed at supporting action sports athletes and enthusiasts. The pair has been developing their cold brew coffee at the Zahn Innovation Platform and recently came in third place in the Zahn Challenge. They’ve also recently inked a deal with SDSU’s Aztec Shops to begin offering Bold Brew Coffee on campus in East Commons.

Stephen Brotebeck, Assistant Professor, School of Theatre, Television & Film

Stephen Brotebeck
Stephen Brotebeck
Brotebeck will direct this spring’s performance of “The Full Monty.” Brotebeck is a professional director and choreographer who has worked on Broadway, including as the movement associate on the Tony Award-winning production of “Peter and the Starcatcher.” As director of “The Full Monty,” Brotebeck will lead a cast of talented musical theatre students as they perform the laugh-out-loud, uplifting musical comedy based on the cult film of the same name.