Alumni Updates

Find out what some of our alumni have been up to.

May Johnson, 2018

May is pursuing a JD at Harvard Law School.

Mara Cole, 1982

Mara serves on the board for Pass The Word Ministries in Monterey, California. Their purpose is to provide for the needs of our underserved and unsheltered individuals and families in the community. She is now also a consultant for Hands Up Foundation in Monterey County. She has a leadership role in the Calvary Chapel Fellowship and was an Oral English Professor in 2019 in Tai’an China to 400 nursing students. Cole is a member of a gospel choir, has been married 38 years, and is the mother of two children and grandmother of two.  

Anna Petersen, 2018

Anna Petersen has returned to her native country of Hungary in 2019, along with husband Jared and son Tibby. After working for a bilingual education nonprofit in Budapest, where students learn English in a fully immersive environment with lessons co-taught by native Hungarian and English-speaking instructors, she joined the fintech company Wise in 2022 in an anti-money laundering role.

Marie (Laurey) McHaffie, 1996

Marie never thought she would be living in Arkansas, but there she is in a truly beautiful state. Marie teaches English, Journalism, Yearbook, and Theatre in a small rural school. She earned her MA in English in 2017 and is entering her 19th year of teaching. She's also studying art, too, and loves it! She carries a piece of Humboldt with her in her heart. Marie appreciates all the trees and waterfalls out there. She hopes she can get back to campus for a visit someday. 

Susanne Ranseen, 2008

After graduating from the Humboldt History Department, I ran the Tonopah Historic Mining Park in Tonopah, Nevada as it curator. I managed 180+ acres of grounds, working closely with the Tonopah town government and the Nevada department of Mining and Geology. This gave me an opportunity to practice my research and writing skills to the point of a number of small publications. I will be proceeding this fall to Oregon State University to start my Masters of Arts in Interdiplinary Studies, history being the core of my focus along with forestry ecology and management. The work I did at Humboldt in my classes and while working at the Humboldt Room gave me a large step to where I have been and where I am going in life. I have many fond memories of my teachers and class mates at Humboldt.

Ray Chips, 1969

Ray Chips, History, 1969, was named one of Pepperdine University’s “40 over 40” recognition recipients: He is thankful for the support and academic success he received at Humboldt, which provided the foundation for his academic and professional future.

Rory Shane Kalin, 2010

Rory Shane Kalin, 2010 History, is happy to announce he and his wife will be returning to Humboldt County where they met. Kalin is starting a position with the Office of the Humboldt County Counsel as a deputy county counsel in April.

Daniel Mandell, 1979

Daniel Mandell, 1979 History, has been given the 2016 award for Distinguished Literary Achievement by the Missouri Humanities Council, in recognition of his six books and two dozen articles on Native Americans in New England between 1600 and 1900.  For more details, see

Robert Deane, 2007

Robert Deane, 2007 History and Journalism, is a library technician at the Oregon Institute of Technology, after working for the Butte Valley Unified School District as the district library technician for six years. He is currently looking to return to school to earn his Master’s Degree in Teaching from Western Governor’s University.

Daniel R. Mandell, 1979

Daniel R. Mandell, 1979 History, recently received Distinguished Literary Achievement Award from the Missouri Humanities Council for my six books and many articles on Native American persistence and adaptation in New England, 1600-1900. Those books include “King Philip’s War: Colonial Expansion, Native Resistance, and the End of Indian Sovereignty” (2010); “Tribe, Race, History: Native Americans in Southern New England, 1780-1880” (2008), which was given the Lawrence Levine Award by the Organization of American Historians for the best book on U.S. cultural history; and “Behind the Frontier: Indians in Eighteenth-Century Eastern Massachusetts” (1996).

Mark Pasquini, 1973

Mark Pasquini, 1973 History, is retiring after many years of work. Pasquini plans on traveling and sampling wine from all continents. He also wishes to continue his writing as a side job. Pasquini plans on throwing away all electronics and wishes everyone a strong and happy future. 


Richard Morris, 1972 History, after working 38 years with the Monterey County Assessor, has been a caddie at the Pebble Beach Golf Links since 2011.

Joshua Martin (f/k/a/ Joshua Roberts), 1998

Joshua Martin (formerly known as Joshua Roberts), 1998 English & History, worked at the Hotel Arcata for a year or so after graduating. Martin then entered law school at the University of Utah, accompanied by his girlfriend, Bonnie Jo McLauchlan (also an Humboldt graduate). Martin made law review, graduated, and practiced criminal defense in Salt Lake City. He later moved on to civil litigation. In 2007 Martin moved to San Louis Obispo County and opened the Law Offices of Joshua W. Martin in 2013. Martin married Bonnie Jo and the couple lives in Grover Beach, Calif., with their two boys, Max, 10, and Charlie, 5, and their dog, Scooby.

Mark Pasquini, 1973

Mark Pasquini, 1973, History & Second Year Teaching Credential, has published the “The Phoenix Cycle” series of eBooks. Royalties from the first volume, “Phoenix in Ashes,” are donated to the Wounded Warrior Project in memory of Clay Cunningham.

Tyler Evans, 2011

Tyler Evans, 2011 History and 2014 Secondary Education Credential, received a Master’s of Arts in History from San Diego State University after graduating from Humboldt. Evans is currently the AVID program coordinator and elective teacher at Temescal Canyon High School in Lake Elsinore, Calif.

Stephanie Freitas, 2013

Stephanie Freitas, 2013 History, is a full time history teacher at Mt. Whitney High School in Visalia, Calif. Freitas is married to Humboldt alumnus Salvador Cazarez, who is also teaching in the Visalia district.

Tyler Cline, 2009

Tyler Cline, 2009 History, pursued his Master of Arts in Public History from Sacramento State University, graduating in 2011. While pursuing his M.A., Cline worked as a processing archivist at the California State Archives. He then worked as an archivist in Anchorage, Alaska, with the U.S. National Parks Service. In 2013, Cline accepted a tenure-track position with the University of Wyoming American Heritage Center as the Digital Programs Archivist, where he is responsible for preservation born-digital collections, and oversees a department of six engaged in mass-digitization of collection material for access on the web.

Nick Entsminger, 2009

Nick Entsminger, 2009 History, graduated with a Master’s of Medical Science from Saint Francis University in Loretto, Pa., and a Certificate in Clinical Proficiency from Stanford University. Entsminger returned to Humboldt to begin a career in rural primary care and emergency medicine. Despite these accomplishments, he still misses his days at Cal Poly Humboldt. Entsminger writes, “The education and experiences that I gained during my time here were paramount in influencing my educational pursuits. Additionally, my love of history has never ceased, and I hope that Humboldt someday offers a Master’s degree in History, so that I may enroll once again. I would like to thank Drs. Marschke, Pasztor, and Mays.”

Samuel M. Navarez, 1975

Samuel M. Navarez 1975, History, is getting ready to retire after 38 years of teaching history and other social science classes.  Navarez has taught for the last 25 years in the Gilroy Unified School District at both the middle school and high school levels. He is currently teaching at an early college high school, called Dr. TJ Owens Gilroy Early College Academy, since it opened in 2007. Navarez has been married to a wonderful lady for the last 34 years and together they have three grown children, Crystal, Michael and Aaron; two are married to wonderful people. Navarez and his wife, Sally, are also raising their 5-year-old grandson.

Nicholas N Entsminger, 2009

I am a Humboldt Alumni currently attending the Primary Care Associate Program (Physician Assistant) at Stanford University. Also, I will be applying to the Master’s of Medical Science program at Saint Francis University this December.  My history training at Cal Poly Humboldt has been invaluable to my success.  My knowledge in history has allowed me to better understand the historical backgrounds that brought about socioeconomic and cultural boundaries that plaque healthcare today.  This understanding has helped me understand the need for primary healthcare in underserved areas, often representing those affected by these boundaries.  Additionally, the history deparment at Cal Poly Humboldt has trained me to effectively organize and communicate (both written and one-on-one) to both patients and other members of the healthcare team and to critically evaluate pharmaceutical updates, which may contain a high level of bias.  I would like to especially thank Drs. Marschke, Mays, and Pasztor.

Michael Hibma, 2003

After graduating from the Humboldt, I enrolled in the History M.A. program at Sacramento State. Soon after enrolling I began a 2.5-year internship in the Community and Cultural Studies Office at the California Department of Transportations Headquarters in downtown Sacramento. While there I worked with architectural historians in research, writing, and general assistance in completing cultural resource reports for transportation projects all over the state. I also provided technical editing assistance for documenting agricultural properties in California. In 2007 I submitted my thesis titled: “Historic District Nomination of the Newton Booth Neighborhood, City of Sacramento, Sacramento County, California” and graduated with an M.A. in History.

Just prior to graduation I took a position with LSA Associates, Inc., a private environmental consulting firm as an architectural historian/cultural resources manager. I am very lucky to be doing what I am for a career. My undergraduate experience in the Humboldt History program definitely set me on a course of success and personal achievement. I will always be grateful for my time at Humboldt and the helpful, yet challenging professors I met, the stimulating learning environment, and the fun I shared with many of my peers.

Gregory Day, 1986

Greg Day is an attorney in Oregon where he practices family, criminal and disability law.  He served as an infantry officer in the Sinai, Egypt and in Afghanistan, and commanded an infantry battalion in Iraq.  He is the recipient of two Bronze Stars and the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, and is currently a Colonel with the National Guard.

He has a Bachelor of Arts in History from Cal Poly Humboldt, a Master of Arts in Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College, and a Doctor of Jurisprudence from the University of Oregon School of Law.

Greg lives on the Rogue River in Grants Pass, Oregon where his family enjoys white-water rafting, scuba diving, and backpacking together.

Daniel Mandell, 1979

In 2012-2013, I will be a research fellow at the American Antiquarian Society thanks to an AAS-NEH grant, and will also be a visiting scholar at the Princeton Institute for Advanced Studies.  My project is a study of the shifting notion of equality in America, circa 1600-1880. Two years ago, my sixth book, _King Philip’s War: Colonial Expansion, Native Resistance, and the End of Indian Sovereignty_, was published by Johns Hopkins University Press for general readers and college survey classes; it was named an “Outstanding Academic Title” by _Choice_ magazine.

John Alcala, 1970

After graduating from Humboldt, and getting my teaching credential in 1971, I started my teaching career at Delano High School in Delano, Ca. I taught history developed its Mock Trial program and eventually became department chairman.I retired in 2008 after teaching 38 yrs.

Kenneth Shonk, Jr., 1996

I earned my doctorate in Irish History from Marquette University in May of 2010, and upon graduation, accepted a position as Assistant Professor of History and Social Studies Education at the University of Wisconsin-Superior. In addition to courses on global and Irish history, I supervise student teachers and offer courses in the methodologies of social studies education. In 2009 I served as a Research Fellow with the University of Pittsburgh’s Institute for Learning.