Noteworthy Pacifican alumni lead insightful forum
On Thursday, Feb. 4, University of the Pacific welcomed back a panel of notable Pacifican alumni for a lively informational forum at noon in the Presidents Room.
Since their time at Pacific, these former editors and writers for The Pacifican have flourished in a variety of diverse and impressive careers, and they were pleased to share their occupational wisdom with the bustling roomful of eager students.
Each of the panelists achieved success in a multifaceted career path, exemplifying their versatility as Pacific graduates.
Ken Wornick ’80 spent his undergraduate career as a geology major here at Pacific; this led to a six-year stint as a geologist at Bechtel before he successfully transitioned into the winemaking and consulting business.
Sue Keenom ‘80, a former Pacifican editor and communications major, currently serves as the senior vice president of state associations and board relations for the National Association of Broadcasters in Washington, D.C.
Previously, Keenom held such impressive positions as executive director of the International Women’s Forum Leadership Foundation and director of administration for U.S. Sen. Gordon Smith, whom she worked with for 12 years.
Tim Ryan ’80 is the CEO of Phoenix Solar AG, a “publicly traded global solar photovoltaic company” based in Germany that markets toward “four key geographies: USA, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Europe.”
Ryan received his B.A. in German and international relations, which he said has contributed to his success in his 25 years of international business conducted in Europe, Asia and the United States.
Fluent in English, French and German, Ryan recommended students expand their mental horizons — and their marketability — by learning another language or two.
Based in Jakarta, Indonesia, former English major and Pacifican editor Patrick McDowell ’81 is the Southeast Asia Bureau Chief for the Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Newswires.
McDowell rose to his current position following an intense, lengthy tenure at the Associated Press, where he held such significant positions as the Southern African Correspondent and the Asia-Pacific Editor and covered such impactful events as the Rwandan genocide, the collapse of the South African apartheid and, more recently, the Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 disappearance.
Later that night, McDowell presented a lecture on China entitled “The Asian Century: Is The U.S. Missing Its Pivot to the World’s Most Vital Region?” at 6 p.m. in the DeRosa University Center Ballroom to a sizeable crowd.
Finally, former Pacifican editor Dr. Susan Giraldez ’80 rounded out the alumni panel. Giraldez is an associate professor of Spanish, as well as the Modern Languages and Literature Department Chair, here at University of the Pacific.
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