STEPHANIE BARRAZA HAS ASPIRATIONS OF WORKING AS A BUYER IN THE FOOD OR FASHION INDUSTRIES AND OF ONE DAY OPENING HER OWN SMALL BUSINESS, FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF HER PARENTS. A STUDENT IN THE BACHELOR OF SCIENCE IN BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION (MANAGEMENT OPTION) PROGRAM AT CAL STATE LA DOWNTOWN, STEPHANIE HOPES OBTAINING HER DEGREE, COMBINED WITH HER STRONG COMMUNICATION SKILLS, WILL ALLOW HER TO STAND OUT IN A COMPETITIVE JOB MARKET.
With associates of arts degrees in business administration, social science, and business technology in-hand, Stephanie was in the process of transferring from another local university when she learned that Cal State LA Downtown was accepting applications. She chose to apply to Cal State LA Downtown’s program because of the strong reputation of the University’s College of Business and Economics. In addition, she was excited about the school’s convenient location and intimate setting, smaller class sizes, and modern facilities. “I like to network in and out of the classroom, and being able to both go to a beautiful school and socialize in a transforming downtown
Los Angeles was a plus,” Stephanie says.
Being accepted into the business program also resulted in Stephanie becoming a student worker at Cal State LA Downtown where she assists with reception duties, special events, and student requests and questions. “I think it’s great that I can apply what I’m learning at Cal State LA Downtown to the very same place. It’s a situation that provides me with perspective and the opportunity to immediately
contribute what I am learning to my job.”
Stephanie’s positive experience at Cal State LA Downtown continues to develop. She and her cohort have become a small family that depends on one another for help and guidance. As part of this group, Stephanie has learned to work within a team including managing personalities while charting plans and solutions to complete assignments, all situations that she will need to apply to workplace settings as well. “The faculty is awesome too,” Stephanie says. “My instructors take the time to answer my questions and provide course work that is always interesting, and that can be applied to today’s real-world business optics.”
Overall, it is Stephanie’s ability to easily and comfortably interface with people that she feels contributes most to her determination to succeed. She learned at an early age as a restaurant server that she had to communicate with a diverse range of people. “I highly depend on my good interpersonal skills when socializing and meeting new people,” Stephanie says. “After all, no matter what career you choose, having good communication skills can only serve to move ideas and projects forward to completion.”
A first-generation American, Stephanie will be the first person in her family to receive a college degree. She credits her family for being strong motivators of her success. This enthusiasm continues to drive her toward her future. “I’m doing this for me and for my family. I want them to see that higher education is possible and accessible.”