wenda fong mildred garcia and Daisy Navarrete
Story Leadership

Chair, Chancellor Share Their 'Journeys to Leadership'

Jeanne Fratello

CSU Chancellor Mildred García and Board of Trustees Chair Wenda Fong shared stories and answered student questions at a special livestreamed event this week.

wenda fong mildred garcia and Daisy Navarrete

From left: ​CSU Board of Trustees Chair ​Wenda Fong, CSU Chancellor Mildred Garcí​a and CSU Channel Islands Associated Students Inc. President Daisy Navarrete.


California State University Chancellor Mildred García and CSU Board of Trustees Chair Wenda Fong shared their “Journeys to Leadership" at a special live event at CSU Channel Islands this week.

Moderated by Daisy Navarrete, the Associated Students Inc. president at CSU Channel Islands, García and Fong answered questions submitted by students from across the CSU system. They shared stories about their backgrounds, their careers, obstacles they have overcome and advice for the future.

View the full recordin​g​.​

García reflected on growing up in a housing project in Brooklyn as the daughter of migrants from Puerto Rico who worked in a factory, as well as her determination to advance herself through education. She remembered a favorite saying of her parents: “The only inheritance a poor family can leave you is a good education."

Fong, the granddaughter of Chinese immigrants who had worked multiple jobs to survive, said that her grandparents had similar dreams for their own children and grandchildren, envisioning that they would “never have to hold anything heavier than a pencil."

Both García and Fong emphasized that CSU students share similar family backgrounds and stories of perseverance as they pursue higher education as a means of achieving greater goals.

“Our campuses are your homes; they're where you can become a leader and where you can change the things that you feel you need to give voice to," García said. “And, you can do that at all of our campuses at the CSU and walk out being wonderful leaders in your communities and in your professions."

“Never let anybody stop you from your dreams," García added. “If you have the passion and commitment to move forward, do it."