Acknowledging Women Students for Women’s History Month

Over half of GGU’s undergraduate and graduate students are women. At the GGU School of Law, 64% of first-year law students are women. In honor of Women’s History Month, we’d like to share the stories of a few outstanding students and recent graduates of GGU’s Ageno School of Business.

Tsovinar Yenokyan (MS, Marketing ’18)


Tsovinar started to work at age 16, which was not common in her native country of Armenia, and began what she calls her, “long-lasting relationship with marketing.” Two years later, she took a Brand Manager position at Starcom Mediavest in Armenia.

Each student has an advisor and mine has been helpful in answering questions about student Visas and my curriculum.

More about Tsovinar >>

Quyen Le  (MBA, Finance ‘19) 

student-quyen-sqQuyen Le decided that she wanted to go to business school in San Francisco to get access to the open-minded culture and business opportunities only it can provide. Her participation in the Financial Women of San Francisco (FWSF) organization resulted in her winning its annual scholarship. Quyen now works at GGU where she helps students from overseas apply for a business degree.

I act as tour guide for students from overseas, among other things. Many international students come here alone and so GGU understands that they need help applying and adjusting in the U.S.

More about Quyen >

Zhaoqian (Anna) Zeng (MBA, Supply Chain ’17)

Anna is from China where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Law from Shanghai’s Customs College. After working in import and export operations, she wanted to expand her career. Golden Gate University provided a very comprehensive program in Supply Chain that covered the aspects of operations she found the most interesting: strategy and tactical operations.

San Francisco is a very welcoming place and people from different cultures feel comfortable here. There are young, energetic people here who are absorbing new information every day.

More about Anna >>

Amina Kasumov (MBA ’16, Management)

Amina Kasumov wrote about the GGU experience and how it deepened her knowledge of leadership.


“.. the courses are developed to provide valuable knowledge that can be applied to the real-world by evaluating real-world examples such as Uber and Amazon. “

More from Amina >>

Significant leadership roles at GGU are occupied by women. More about that in a blog post later this month.


The Hot San Francisco Job Market

Thousands of people choose to get an undergraduate or graduate degree in San Francisco because of its culture, diversity, and employment opportunities. San Francisco is home to companies with a global impact and is a center of worldwide innovation. Technology companies – from spunky startups to mammoth companies – generate excitement for many who want to launch a career or move up the ladder. But are there really enough possibilities for employment in San Francisco? The answer is yes.

According to a recent California state jobs report, San Francisco and the adjacent San Mateo area added 10,000 jobs in a single month. In its summary of the report, the San Jose Mercury News cites a senior Wells Fargo economist who predicts further expansion of the local job market. In San Francisco, the unemployment rate is a low 3.3%, which is lower than both the California and National average according to the EDD.

Technology Companies Moving to San Francisco

Although the Silicon Valley remains the stereotypical location for technology companies, it is San Francisco that has become the “tech titan” according to Jenny Belotserkovsky, a startup professional who has been in the area since 1995. She cites a few big reasons why San Francisco has surpassed Silicon Valley as the place to be. A city tax break brought Twitter and Zendesk to the city’s  Mid-Market area. Rents for companies in the crowded Silicon Valley are rising. And, of course, talented people want to live in San Francisco rather than next to low-slung office parks, factors that brought Google and Mozilla to the Embarcadero.

Technology Companies Come to San Francisco
> Between 2012 and 2013, 24 companies relocated to San Francisco from the Peninsula and Silicon Valley, including Gigwalk, Detercon, and Seal Software.
> Out-of-town [out of San Francisco] tech firms that opened up an office in the city included Amazon, Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Mozilla, eBay, and LinkedIn.
> The next crop of fast-growing companies founded between 2004-10 chose to grow up in San Francisco…including Dropbox, Airbnb, Uber, Yelp, BitTorrent, Square, Slack, and Pinterest.

All of these companies are close to GGU, which is located in the SOMA (South of Market) Finacial District. In fact, the campus in the center of a 1.5-square-mile radius that covers the best established and emerging companies that San Francisco has to offer.

Just stand in front of GGU and you get a view of the new 61-story Salesforce Tower and Deloitte–one of the Big4 accounting firms. FitBit is a five-minute walk away. You will find virtually every major financial firm between campus and the Transamerica building less than a mile away. The area is also home to the three biggest advertising agencies in the city. Uber and the aforementioned Twitter are in the Mid-Market area southwest of campus–near the Civic Center Bart Station. Do-it-yourself-Web-design company Weebly is at the southern end of the South of Market area, also within the 1.5-square-mile radius of GGU.

GGU is the center of a 1.5-square-mile radius that covers the best established and emerging companies that San Francisco has to offer.

Because of its location, GGU has a cross-pollinating relationship with nearby businesses that stretches back decades. GGU draws talent from these organizations to teach, while local businesses have employed thousands of graduates throughout the University’s 116-year history.

Beyond Tech: Business Jobs in San Francisco

While San Francisco is becoming “top of mind for tech jobs,” other positions are needed at local firms. Demand for project managers is higher in San Francisco than anywhere in the U.S., according to TalentWorks. And it’s not just any Project Managers that are needed—highly educated and certified professionals that understand the industry are sought after. Business people that are savvy in both sales and IT are particularly in demand.

The San Francisco Bay Brea is also a hot job market if you want to apply your business skills in Healthcare Management, Marketing Events Management, Supply Chain, or Finance. Talents in these areas are the most scarce according to LinkedIn’s 2017 Workforce Report. TalentWorks also reports that the number of accounting jobs in San Francisco each month is the highest in the nation.

All considered, it is not surprising that San Francisco has been named the best city in the US for recent graduates to find a job by the highly respected American Institute of Economic Research (AIER). The study looked at many factors, including unemployment rate, labor force participation, and how many people worked in emerging industries.

The San Francisco Business Environment

If you are interested in learning about San Francisco’s reputation and position in the business world, we invite you to watch this video with Dr. Gordon Swartz, Dean of GGU’s Ageno School of Business.

Ranking of Best Universities for Adult Learners Is “So Needed”

For the second consecutive year, Washington Monthly ranks Golden Gate University America’s #1 School for Adult Learners in its annual College Guide and Rankings. Forbes contributor Richard Eisenberg wrote that the Washington Monthly list “is so needed” [emphasis his] because of the sheer amount adult-learner students (nearly half of higher-ed enrollees), and how different their needs are from those under 25. For example, older students want flexible scheduling, online classes that fit their busy lives, as well as credit for life experiences that have been “classes” in and of themselves.

Eisenberg highlighted a few choice quotes from Washington Monthly’s hour-plus video seminar about adult education:

  • “The best colleges for adults tend to be regional public universities, private schools, and community colleges that U.S. News doesn’t even rank.”
    — Paul Glastris, Editor in Chief of Washington Monthly
  • “Today’s students are not all 18-year-olds walking into a brick building every day, with mom and dad sending checks.”
    –Courtney Brown, Vice President of Strategic Impact at the Lumina Foundation
  • “The environment for higher-ed programs that have a focus on older adults seeking purposeful engagement is still evolving as universities try to find the business model that works for them.”
    –Marci Alboher, Vice President, Strategic Communications, at

The participation of in the video seminar is significant because of the organization’s mission of supporting meaningful second careers for older adults with resources such as the Encore Career Handbook.  Supporting second  (and first!) careers for adults has been fundamental to Golden Gate University’s mission for over 100 years, which is no small part of its #1 ranking.

Why GGU Was Ranked #1 by Washington Monthly

To compile the rankings, Washington Monthly reviewed data from the Department of Education’s Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) survey, the department’s new College Scorecard database and the College Board’s Annual Survey of Colleges. The metrics that determined GGU’s rating include:

  • ease of transfer/enrollment
  • flexibility of programs
  • services available for adult learners
  • percent of adult students (age 25+)
  • mean earnings of adult students ten years after entering college
  • loan repayment of adult students five years after entering repayment
  • tuition and fees for in-district students

Related postGoing Back to School in your Mid-20s, 30s, or 40s–It’s Golden Gate University’s Specialty by Jelena Ristic Kelleher, JD, Interim Associate Dean and Director of Undergraduate Programs.

Golden Gate University Ranked #1 in US for Adult Learners for Second Consecutive Year

For the second consecutive year, Washington Monthly ranks Golden Gate University America’s #1 School for Adult Learners in its annual College Guide and Rankings.

How GGU Was Chosen

To compile the rankings, Washington Monthly reviewed data from the Department of Education’s Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) survey, the department’s new College Scorecard database and the College Board’s Annual Survey of Colleges.

The metrics that determined GGU’s rating include:

  • ease of transfer/enrollment
  • flexibility of programs
  • services available for adult learners
  • percent of adult students (age 25+)
  • mean earnings of adult students ten years after entering college
  • loan repayment of adult students five years after entering repayment
  • tuition and fees for in-district students

Read the article in Washington Monthly >>

Free Event: Mastering Human Resource Management for Small Businesses & Startups

Small businesses and startups need more than just profits or investors to keep growing. Finding the right people to help them realize their vision is paramount. Unfortunately, human resources rules and regulations have to be considered and can be a barrier to moving forward. If you want to hire the very best people without a hassle, we invite you to hear from a panel of HR experts at a free GGU event: Mastering Human Resource Management for Small Businesses & Startups. Hosted by GGU’s Ageno School of Busines, the event is open to GGU students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the general public.

The event will be s. A networking opportunity and refreshments will follow the panel presentation.

Mastering Human Resource Management
for Small Businesses & Startups

Thursday, July 27th
Golden Gate University [map], Rm. 5200-5202
RSVP for this free event >>


Katya Korepanova is an alumna of GGU’s Master of Arts in Industrial-Organizational Psychology program and currently leads HR and Culture at Leanplum—where she builds culture, onboarding, employee relations, and benefits programs. Leanplum is the most complete mobile marketing platform, designed for intelligent action. Their integrated solution delivers meaningful engagement across messaging and the in-app experience. Leanplum offers Messaging, Automation, App Editing, Personalization, A/B Testing, and Analytics.

Doug Devlin is an alumnus of the GGU Master of Business Administration program and CEO of Zuman. Zuman was founded in 2012 with a simple mission: to transform the people operations experience and help employees grow their companies. Zuman provides the premium single-source cloud solution for human resources, payroll, benefits administration, and talent management for better people operations.

Meet our moderator

LouAnn Conner is the Director of the Small Business Program at GGU, where she develops and leads programs supporting the success of up-and-coming small businesses. The proud recipient of Outstanding GGU Adjunct of 2015, LouAnn is Founder of SagaciousThink, LLC. LouAnn teaches a variety of courses in International Business and Strategy, Context of Business, Managerial Analysis and Team Dynamics and Entrepreneurship.

Again, this event is absolutely free and we invite you to register online.

Golden Gate University Students Present Mobile Marketing Plan to the Golden State Warriors

The Golden State Warriors have won the 2017 NBA Championship! We’d like to take this opportunity to provide an example of the strong relationship between the Golden State Warriors and Golden Gate University – Proud University Partner of the Golden State Warriors.

In Spring Term of 2016, a team of GGU students taking a graduate-level Mobile Marketing class presented ideas to Warriors Leadership for improving the team’s mobile app (Android / iOS). The project included direct interaction with Warriors management who provided the students with an inside look at mobile marketing and the changes in the mobile technology landscape brought on by data and business analytics.

GGU instructor Goldie Aranha Viegas challenged students to develop ideas for an app based on the game-day journey of a fan – from download, to tip-off, to post-game. Like many instructors, Viegas works in the field as Senior Mobile Manager at VF Corporation: an apparel company that offers iconic brands such as Vans and Timberland. The project was a present-day scenario in which students had to provide ideas that were achievable and realistic.

“The people from the Golden State Warriors and GGU made this a journey to remember. This project got me closer to Dub Nation than I was before, and proved to be a great learning experience.”

—Farhad Kazi (MS Marketing, 2016)

Then student and now alumnus Farhad Kazi (MS Marketing, 2016) comments: “As in many GGU classes, our instructor was a working professional, which added important value by directing our project, providing mentorship, and creating an experience of real-world learning,”

The six-member team included students from China, India, Colombia, and the United States. The group had prior work experience in marketing which allowed them to create a solid marking plan in all aspects.

The group studied successful mobile campaigns launched by other companies and conducted a survey of Golden State Warriors fans. Social media features were an important consideration because Golden State Warrior fans are highly active and engaged on social platforms. The recommendation included social sharing, paid, unpaid and earned digital marketing tactics, app analytics, and fan behavior.

“Mobile Marketing had the elements of a real-world professional experience, as we had to follow a tight deadline and create a comprehensive plan,” says Kazi. “We not only had to convey information, but also give a live presentation intended to persuade a Golden State Warriors marketing executive to implement it.”

After graduation, Farhad Kazi found work as a Communication Analyst at Cisco. “The people from the Golden State Warriors and GGU made this a journey to remember. This project got me closer to Dub Nation than I was before, and proved to be a great learning experience.”

Farhad Kazi: My Experience in the Mobile Marketing Class

  • Team environment
  • Real-life challenge that is relevant to future work assignments
  • Diverse environment that helps generate ideas
  • Professional instructor providing an up-to date scenario
  • Assignments relevant to future work assignments
  • Mentoring and networking opportunities
  • Taking in to account the most recent developments in mobile marketing

Learn more about GGU’s Master of Science in Integrated Marketing Communications and Master of Science in Marketing programs.

Video: Why Go to Business School in San Francisco?

Golden Gate University is located in downtown San Francisco in the heart of the Financial District. In this video, Dr. Gordon Swartz, Dean of GGU’s Ageno School of Business, reflects on the city’s reputation and position in the business world.

Dr. Swartz’s holds a DBA from Harvard University and has extensive and varied experience that combines business school teaching, research, and administration — with strategy consulting and development of high-growth organizations. As vice president of MarketBridge, Inc., he led major marketing, sales strategy, and transformation efforts for Fortune Global 500 companies.

Getting an MBA degree at GGU in San Francisco, specifically in the “FiDi”, gives students access to a wealth of expert working faculty and networking opportunities in major business areas such as finance, accounting, taxation, marketing, project management, and IT management. Throughout its 115-year history, Golden Gate University has become an integral part of the San Francisco business world — with over 16,000 alumni residing in the San Francisco Bay Area alone.

Golden Gate University Leadership Development Insights Have Asia-Wide Impact

Professor Jeffrey Yergler, Chair of the Undergraduate Management department at Golden Gate University’s Ageno School of Business traveled to Seoul, Korea in early April, 2017, to serve as the Leadership Development Instructor in The Asia Foundation Development Fellows Program.

Prof. Yergler

The Asia Foundation Development Fellows Program is focused on identifying emerging national social reformers and social entrepreneurs who are committed to the development of democratic values within their countries. The 2017 Development Fellows are a group of 12 women and men representing 12 Asian countries including Mongolia, Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Afghanistan, India, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, and Myanmar.

The director of the Development Fellows Program, David Kim, asked Prof. Yergler to be the “Lead” Leadership Development Instructor for the first week of orientation. The program included leadership assessments and behavioral styles, team performance and engagement, change and change management, vision, mission, and core values, innovation and rapid design, and ongoing training and development for the Fellows’ organizations and team members. Following their orientation week in Seoul, the Development Fellows flew to Vietnam for another week of training and collaboration on women’s rights and the environment. The Fellows will arrive in San Francisco in September, 2017 for the capstone week of the Leadership Program.

Surya Karki (foreground) and Prof. Yergler (background) — Surya Karki, a Development Fellow, is the school director for United World in Nepal, where he oversees the education of more than 650 children and the construction of 35 primary schools in the Sankhuwasabha and Gulmi districts. He is also co-founder and CEO of the Diyalo Foundation, which promotes sustainable development in under-served rural communities. In 2014, he was awarded the Prince of Wales and UNILEVER Sustainable Living Young Entrepreneurs Award, in 2016, he was recognized as one of 30 under 30 International Literacy Association leaders, and in 2017 he was recognized by Forbes as one of the 30 Under 30 Asia 2017: Social Entrepreneurs Making A Big Difference!

For Prof. Yergler, working with the Development Fellows has been an amazing experience. He said that the Development Fellows Program provides a unique opportunity to learn with and from an exceptionally talented and visionary group of leaders who represent the vast diversities of Asia, and “the priority that each Fellow places on, for example, justice, fairness, transparent governance, the environment, equal access, education, economic opportunity, job training, social equality, and respect for the rights of girls and women and how all of these priorities inform the way they build, lead, and influence within and beyond their organizations was powerful, inspirational, and transformational.”

About The Asia Foundation

The Asia Foundation is a nonprofit international development organization committed to improving lives across a dynamic and developing Asia. Informed by six decades of experience and deep local expertise, our work across the region addresses five overarching goals strengthen governance, empower women, expand economic opportunity, increase environmental resilience, and promote regional cooperation. Headquartered in San Francisco, The Asia Foundation works through a network of offices in 18 Asian countries and in Washington, DC. Working with public and private partners, the Foundation receives funding from a diverse group of bilateral and multilateral development agencies, foundations, corporations, and individuals. In 2016, we provided $87.8 million in direct program support and distributed textbooks and other educational materials valued at $9.5 million.

GGU Online: Librarian Support for Students

Over 4,500 GGU students took online classes last year — a large number considering GGUs modest size. To make life easier for online students, Librarians at the GGU Business Library are working hard to support them with the content and services they want.

LibGuides – Masters of Curation

Research librarians love searching for information, but this may not be as fun for students on a deadline. Librarians have created over 60 LibGuides which save students time when researching a specific topic. How many sources of great information do you have about economic forecasting, just off the top of your head? Not many?

GGU Librarian Teresa Lee created this research guide for Economic Forecasts and Indicators

Library Search Portal – Leave Google and Wikipedia in the dust

With clickbait articles and thin journalism clogging Google results and interested parties fiddling with Wikipedia pages, the GGU online catalog is a must for students. Librarians curate and update the library’s search portal that serves up citation-worthy results from a collection of approximately 40,000 print books, 175,000 e-books, and 54,000 e-Journal titles. Librarians work closely with GGU faculty, so the collection is tailor-made to student needs.

The library makes the research experience more effective by teaching students to find, evaluate, and use appropriate resources. In keeping with GGU’s real-world approach to learning, we make sure to have current, easily-accessible content available through the library.

—James Krusling, Library Director

Subscription Databases – “You get what you pay for.”

As any business student knows, the “good stuff” is worth paying for. That’s why the library staff subscribes to over 100 databases covering all disciplines taught at the university. The subscription databases include heavy-duty research reports and articles; esteemed publications such as Harvard Business Review; publications for very specialized disciplines such as supply chain management; best practices articles that are often behind paywalls; and business mega-databases such as EBSCO’s Business Source Complete that carry tens of thousands of business articles.

GGU Business Library Digital Resource Facts
Librarian-created “LibGuides”: 65
Subscription databases: 112
Electronic journal titles in the collection: 54,513

Virtual Support – “I’ve fallen down on my research and I can’t get up!”

Librarians provide one-on-one research support by email, instant messenger, and phone.

Online Research Skills – “Oh, that was the best practice…6 months ago!”

Librarians help teach research skills that are crucial in a rapidly changing business landscape where best practices and strategy changes in a matter of weeks. This happens both in the classroom and via video modules online.

Popularity – Students are using the digital library.

Here are some stats for 2016 as reported by Library Director James Krusling:

Electronic articles viewed: 150,665
eBook requests: 72,263
Database searches: 194,191
Electronic industry reports viewed: 43,526

Krusling says: “The library makes the research experience more effective by teaching students to find, evaluate, and use appropriate resources. In keeping with GGU’s real-world approach to learning, we make sure to have current, easily-accessible content available through the library.”

Not Just Online

There were 121,638 visits to the library in 2016. The GGU Business Library is at the center of a modern space that enables individual and group learning complete with customizable furniture, mobile whiteboards, and technology-enhanced collaboration stations. It also provides great convenience for students through its sharing of space with eLearning, Tutoring Services, The Center for Teaching & Learning Excellence, and the GGU Law Library.

Library photo: Saul Bromberger & Sandra Hoover Photography

Learn more about GGU’s online classes >>

Best Places to Eat and Drink in San Francisco’s Financial District (AKA GGU’s Back Yard)

ccGolden Gate University is located one block from San Francisco’s Financial District. The area, often called “FiDi,” is not just the home of major banks, accounting firms, and technology companies such as Uber and Salesforce (Their new tower is just one block away.). FiDi also hosts many places to eat where you can find local employees on their lunch break or the residents of hundreds of new rental and condo units in the area. You can also spot GGU students at any of these spots between classes or before an evening course.

The GGU community voted on their favorite spots and here are the results:

Best Pizza – Portico Restaurant

Portico Restaurant is located a few steps away from GGU. At the corner of Mission and 1st streets, Portico Restaurant is our community’s favorite place to grab a slice. The Chicken Pesto is one of their most popular pizzas. Other favorites are the Classic Veggie and the All Meat Combination, piled with sausage, pepperoni, salami, chicken, and bacon. More than 20 varieties are made daily, but not all of them are on the regular menu.

Best Mexican Restaurant – Uno Dos Tacos

At Stevenson and 2nd streets, Uno Dos Tacos is one of the busiest eateries in the GGU neighborhood, especially at happy hour! The taqueria and tequila bar started as a family business. In his early years, Chef Luis Flores learned to cook by shadowing his mother and aunt, and he is still using his mother’s recipes for many items, including the best-selling carnitas, mole, and burritos. According to the manager, “everything that comes out of Uno Dos Tacos’ kitchen is considered “homemade and deeply personal,” prepared with fresh ingredients on a daily basis.

Best Indian Restaurant – Mehfil Restaurant

Located on 2nd Street and Market, right across from the Montgomery BART Station, Mehfil Restaurant is one of the most affordable lunch destinations within walking distance of GGU. The menu offers a wide variety of traditional Indian dishes, along with a $7 special lunch box menu that changes daily. All-time customer favorites include vegetarian malai kofta, mattar mushroom, chicken tikka masala and their lightly spicy signature bread, Mehfil-E-Naan.

Best Burger – Super Duper

Super Duper was another easy winner, with many votes. We interviewed the store manager at the Metreon location and got the scoop on secret items that you may not know even existed in Super Duper’s menu, like the Four Cheese, is the perfect example of that. It adds four layers of yumminess to Super Duper’s signature burger with aged white cheddar, pepper jack, cheddar and Cambozola blue cheese in addition to lettuce, tomato and Super Duper’s famous Super Sauce. Another second secret burger is the Philly Jalapeño, topped with grilled bell peppers, onions and, of course, jalapeños. It used to be on the menu years ago but today only the loyal Super Duper customers know about it.

Best Place to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth – Cupcake Cove

Cupcake Cove (treats pictured above) is one of many easy-to-miss neighborhood gems that our community managed to discover while on the prowl for a sugar fix. Located on Battery and Pine streets, it serves a diet-defying variety of delicious cupcakes. The shop has a rotating menu with seasonal specialties. The best sellers are the Red Velvet and Sea Salt Caramel cupcakes, followed in descending order by the Guava & Passion Fruit, Chocolate, Coffee and Lemon cupcakes.

Best Bar – Louie’s Bar

Whether you’re a beer person or will do nothing but cocktails, Louie’s Bar is one of the most amiable spots in the “FidDi” neighborhood, always full of friendly people who are happy to see you. Bartender Cindy, who is famous for remembering a name and a face, said that countless GGU students and faculty stop by the bar to decompress after a stressful day, celebrate an event and socialize, or sometimes just to review a paper with a scotch-and-dry in hand.

Best Coffee Place – Herbst Café (at GGU)

Our café proudly serves Peet’s Coffee & Tea, offering seasonal drinks such as Pumpkin Chai Latte and Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Mocha in the fall and peppermint-flavored beverages around the holidays. Our baristas like to experiment since they enjoy caffeinated beverages themselves. They told us about two items that you most likely will never see on the menu but are delicious: the French Raspberry Matcha and the White Chocolate Raspberry Mocha. 

For more on the GGU area, read the feature article in GGU’s recent alumni magazine: Welcome to the Neighborhood: A Look at the Urban Transformation Surrounding GGU.