California State University, Long Beach
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Outstanding Professor, Staff Member

Published: July 15, 2014

2014 Outstanding Professor

Stephen Mezyk
Stephen Mezyk, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Stephen Mezyk’s accomplishments in teaching, research and service are recognized as among the most impressive in the Chemistry and Biochemistry Department.

Mezyk has an extraordinary talent for both teaching and research. He has taught eight different courses, including General Chemistry and two graduate courses in Physical Chemistry. Scores on his teaching evaluations are excellent, consistently far above department and college norms. He is highly regarded for his ability to make complex, quantitative material clear and easy to understand, engage students in class and help them develop problem-solving skills.

A physical chemist with interests in energy and the environment, Mezyk is a prolific researcher with more than 100 papers published in top-notch journals since he joined CSULB in 2001. His research is supported by more than $3.6 million he has received in external grants and contracts.

His lab has attracted some of the most talented students in the College. He has supervised the research of 75 students, 68 of whom were undergraduates. Many of them have gone on to PhD, MD and MD/PhD programs in highly prestigious universities across the country.

Mezyk has served on numerous department and college committees and is actively involved in professional organizations. In addition, he was part of a team that developed videos to support online chemistry instruction at Coastline Community College. The video series was purchased by the Public Broadcasting Service and won an Emmy award for instructional programming.

2014 Outstanding Staff Member

Kathleen Engberg
Kathleen Engberg, School of Nursing

CSULB holds a special place in Kathleen Engberg’s heart. She earned her bachelor’s degree in English Education in 1980 and 25 years later returned to The Beach as an Administrative Coordinator in the School of Nursing.

Throughout the years, her responsibilities expanded and she is now the lead department coordinator overseeing office duties, the department budget and class scheduling. She coordinates hiring for all part-time instructors, maintains department records and assists faculty and students.

Engberg joined the university’s Staff Council in 2005. She has served as secretary twice and as an executive committee member at large. In 2011-12 she was chair of Staff Council’s Special Events Committee organizing, coordinating and participating in the Summer Picnic, Spooktacular, the Cherishing the Children Holiday Party and Staff Day. She has also volunteered on the Staff Development Committee, organizing a “Munch-n-Learn” at the KJAZZ radio station.

Engberg has served on the campus search committees and administrative review committees. She has been recognized in her department with the Outstanding Staff award twice.

Her appreciation for CSULB’s spirit of community inspires her to continue working to promote and improve campus life. She looks forward to finding new ways to serve on campus and encourage projects that support partnerships in scholarship and community.

When she is not at work, Engberg volunteers to assist rescue dogs from local shelters and occasionally provides a foster home for dogs. Currently, she and her husband Jack are providing a loving home to three rescue dogs that they have adopted.