Centreville, Va., is approximately 2,655 miles from the CSUN campus. But the miles don’t distance alumnus Ken Schwartz ’94 (Marketing), MBA ’99 from his alma mater.
Schwartz has been a central figure in organizing CSUN alumni in the Washington, D.C., area for networking events, such as the 2016 Washington, D.C., CSUN Alumni Reception and Dodgers-Nationals baseball games at D.C.’s Nationals Park in 2015 and 2016 (where, in 2015, CSUN alumni were recognized on the stadium’s scoreboard).
“I love my university, and if I can give them a little notice on the East Coast, then that’s fantastic,” Schwartz said. “I love being involved in the political side, too. There are a couple of political events on [Capitol Hill] that I know President Harrison comes out to to talk about Cal State issues with members of Congress, and there are interns here who are taught the process and shown how the political machine works, and that’s fun to see.”
CSUN’s presence in the nation’s capital is bolstered by the DC Internship Program, which allows CSUN students the opportunity to live, work and learn in Washington for an entire semester or summer term.
Schwartz isn’t directly involved in the program, but he has lent his support by attending Capitol Hill events with the interns, to learn firsthand about the legislative process.
On September 14, he staffed the CSUN table at Back to College Night — a Washington D.C. event for California college and university alumni.
Schwartz ran for Congress in 2000 while he was still living in California, and then again in 2006 in Virginia (he lost both races). He is currently the director of communications for health care organization Altarum Institute, after working previously for MGM Studios and Sony Pictures Entertainment in LA.
“One of the reasons I’m passionate about being involved with CSUN on the East Coast has to do with networking,” Schwartz said. “Having been unemployed here and there throughout my career, I understand the value of having a network of like-minded people who may be able to help me out. If I can foster that in D.C. and help even one person, or pass along one resume, then that’s a huge win.”