Bristol Graduates First Athlete
Horace Nguyen and Men's Basketball Head Coach, Jeron Roberts
Among the students who donned cap and gown at Bristol’s inaugural Commencement Ceremony on November 15, 2014, was Horace Nguyen. Often seen wearing a basketball uniform, Horace is Bristol’s first Bear to graduate. He proudly received his Associate’s in Business Administration with fist-pumping teammates cheering him on in the crowd.
“I enjoyed my professors," Horace says, "They were flexible and hands-on with lots of one-on-one time. I was able to get advice right away too.” Number “0”, a guard, Horace had one of his most memorable playing experiences last year in a game against University of California, Irvine. “It was a surreal night. I was playing a Division One level team and I got 4 for 4 in the first half. After that game, I realized I fit it.” He says his teammates are a good group of guys that are hard-working athletes. “Every one has bought into the Coach’s system. If we keep at it, the results are going to be there.”
Horace is continuing on in the Bachelor’s Business Administration program. “Here at Bristol, you are getting the best education and top notch coaching.”
Congrats, Horace. Wishing you continued success here at Bristol. Go Bears!
Graduating MBA student, Hoang Truong, is applying the valuable knowledge from his Bristol MBA to grow his career.
Hoang Truong eagerly anticipates his graduation ceremony at Bristol University this Saturday, November 15th. Truong is one of the first MBA students to graduate from Bristol since it began in 2011. Coming to Anaheim was Truong’s first time outside his native Viet Nam. This bold move gave him a strong sense of adventure. When asked how he chose Bristol, he said “BU offered an affordable tuition with a flexible study framework. Most importantly, the program fits my passion and long-term plan”. Plus, he added, “Bristol University faculty and staff were so helpful and supportive of me. I have received a lot of assistance in studying, visa application, housing, and graduation ceremony, and more.”
Truong believes the MBA program not only helped him to acquire knowledge in international business but also inspired ideas for future entrepreneurship. “I was a founder of an online trading website that exports products from the US to Vietnam. The knowledge contributes a great deal to my team-work and leadership skills as well as my ability to problem-solve.” he added. “I look forward to doing more in the U.S. market.”
After finishing his MBA at Bristol University, Hoang accepted a job offer to work as an Associate Producer for Vietnam Outreach at Thoughtful Media Group, Inc. in Los Angeles. He is working on creating videos for Youtube and posting content for social media.
Hoang’s wife arrived here to attend the Bristol University inaugural graduation ceremony at 10:00 a.m. on November 15th.
Bristol MBA student is empowered with knowledge, confidence and faculty blessings.
Cuong Tran is one of the first Bristol University MBA students who will graduate next month in Bristol's first ever graduation ceremony. He is also one of the select students who received two phases of the Vietflame scholarship. When asked about why he chose to come to the U.S. to pursue his education, he said, "Even though I have an engineering background, I do believe what I learned from the MBA program at Bristol University will help me to improve my management, leadership, and teamwork skills."
Faculty member, Dr. Robert Batiste, enthusiastically stated, "The BU faculty is extremely proud of Cuongs’ accomplishments. He is a credit to the university and to its MBA cohort (learning team) program. Batiste added, "For the last year, Cuong has been the arm of his fellow classmates. He has continued to assist other students in the cohort overcome their weaknesses, and has himself grown by expanding his knowledge, thinking, and graduate opportunities. He is also able to use this degree to obtain future employment for which he is extremely qualified."
Cuong is preparing for his graduation ceremony November 15th on the Bristol campus. His wife and two-year-old son have arrived in the U.S. to celebrate his big day.Looking forward to the celebration and reflecting on his experience, he said, "Bristol University has created a very good environment for me, I received a lot of assistance from student services and professors."
Paul Cook "This dedication has taught me how to stay with something regardless of the circumstances and how to pursue a dream when I fail. Never ever give up and stay true to our gift."
Paul Cook - Head Coach for Track and Field / Athletics Assistant to the President
Why do we compete and why do we coach? The typical answer is quite obvious. We want to win! That was certainly part of my motivation as an athlete and now as a coach, but it has never been the driving force inside my heart.
As a young boy growing up in a small town in Northern California my two brothers and I would compete at everything we did. We played outside every day until after dark and we were tenacious and competitive. We lived on the end of a street in a quiet neighborhood that had the largest olive grove in the world in our back yard. Little did I know that this small town boy would go on to compete on the world stage and then do it again as a coach. The journey to get there was one challenge after another that was often filled with discouragement and disappointment before I was able to attain the thrill of victory.
It began in high school when my dad wouldn't sign the parent permission form allowing me to play football. That was my first big disappointment. So a friend invited me to run cross country after school one day and I had no idea what that was, but I agreed. I finished second on the varsity team as a freshman and I was hooked! During this time that I spent as a youth, I learned the very foundations of competition and fair play. My parents, friends, and coaches always instilled in me the importance of competing and doing so fairly. Running was a powerful way for competition and the fairness issue was a huge draw for me. The first to finish was the winner. There was no way a bad call by an official could change that fact. A clear winner and fairness.
Running at the national cross country championships in Boulder, Colorado
I was recruited to run at some of the best universities in the country, but something was missing. My life and athletic career lacked the mental, physical, and spiritual balance necessary for my life to be complete. Thus, I chose Azusa Pacific University, a small Christian university, which was also very good in cross country and track. This was the beginning of my journey to pursue my potential and to do so living a balanced life. During high school and college, I enjoyed the fruits of my training efforts and I achieved many successes winning many races, setting school records, setting meet and course records, being named most valuable athlete, etc. There were many setbacks and disappointments, but I was able to remain focused on my goals.
National cross country championships in Indianapolis, Indiana
After graduation, Athletes In Action Track and Field (a club team) recruited me. At that time club teams were the best way for competition as the system in place rewarded teams and individuals differently than how the professionals are today. Being a member of AIA required that you had the Olympic “Aâ€ standard, which meant that we had some very fast people on our team. I have continued to be a member with AIA and my career as an athlete has now covered many years of running at a high level including making some national teams and setting an American record (master's 20k track). I've won many national championships as a team member and been on the podium individually, but never a gold. That pursuit of individual gold has been a driving force in my life, and it's been a life lesson in being tenacious and focused on a goal. This dedication has taught me how to stay with something regardless of the circumstances and how to pursue a dream when I fail. Never ever give up and stay true to our gift. That pretty much sums me up. I have become someone that dares to dream, pursue the dream, and live the dream regardless of my circumstances. I remain dedicated, focused, determined, and I don't give up.
With Ezekiel Kemboi and Moses Kiptanui (both are world champions and Olympic champions in the 3,000m steeple chase) in Kenya.
So why do I compete and coach? I do so to fulfill my gift(s) and most importantly, I do so to touch the lives of those with whom I come into contact with. It's all about these people and the positive influence of my life and experiences that makes this life and journey so worthwhile. Athletics has taken me to nearly every state in the USA and many countries throughout the world. My training, knowledge, and experiences have served me well as I now travel extensively to teach sports science, coaching education, and how to balance oneself. The reward of giving goes well beyond competition and being able make a real difference in the lives of people in many third world countries that live in seemingly hopeless conditions is why I do this.
Jeron Roberts: Hard work, Dedication, and Perseverance will take you further than even you think you can go
Jeron Roberts - Athletics Director and Men's Basketball Head Coach at Bristol University.
When I was a senior in high school, I was in love with the game of basketball. At this time, I was not even on the radar of high level collegiate programs. I had the luxury of having one small school in Northern California showing a lot of interest in me, and that was the only school interested. I knew I wanted to go to college; however, the opportunity hadn't presented itself in such a revealing manner at this time. The reason was 7 games into my junior season the worst thing I thought possible could happen happened. I was in the middle of a game-playing defense and I unfortunately broke my foot, ending my junior season immediately! I couldn't believe it! I was having a great junior campaign, the most important year for recruiting purposes because my senior year was supposed to be the icing on the cake. One sharp roll of the foot and I heard a pop needless to say that was the last thing I would hear for the rest of the season basketball wise. I spent the rest of that season rehabbing and focusing on coming back even stronger and better.
In Madrid, Spain for 2007 European Championships
In Amsterdam, Netherlands
I vowed to go out my senior season and prove everyone wrong who doubted me or didn't think I was good enough to be where I thought I should be. I remembered lying in my bed one night wondering what was going to be with my college career. I had no schools recruiting me. I was coming off a season ending injury. I was at square one from a basketball standpoint. I worked the hardest I had ever worked in my life that summer. I worked with the team, on my own, and even when I didn't feel like working out, I worked out again! I was so passionate about getting where I wanted in life and I knew the only way to get there was to put in the work. I was told by former older players,Whatever you put into it, is what you are going to get out of it. This saying resonated with me for years to come.
In Shanghai, China
Finally, my senior season of basketball had arrived. Long story short, I had one of the best senior campaigns ever in the state of California. I was the leading scorer in all of Southern California and number 3 in scoring in the entire state. I led my team to a CIF Playoff birth while obtaining ALL CIF/ALL STATE/ALL VALLEY honors along the way. My hard work had paid off! I was excited because now the Division 1 schools where calling. I went from 0 schools calling to over 15 major Division 1 schools in a matter of one year! I chose the University of Wyoming as home to further my collegiate career. I had a great 4-year career there, where I am the number 5 all-time leading scorer. This gave me the chance to become a professional and begin a 14-year professional playing career, which took me all over Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.
In Haarlem, Netherlands
I have learned what a hard work ethic can do for you. The harder you work in anything, the greater the results, and this is true! I am a walking testament to this. I put my mind and body to the test and it has taken me to places I never envisioned. I have the same vision for all of the athletes and students I come in contact with at Bristol University on a daily basis. Through hard work and perseverance, I was able to embark on a memorable journey, one in which the lessons of life have been the greatest teachers. I believe my international experiences have shaped me to become a person of culture, living in cities like Tel Aviv, Amsterdam, Milan, Istanbul, and Shanghai, to name a few. I have had a chance to touch the lives of today's youth through sport. What better way to be able to connect with people than through something you love! I love to teach, and as Athletic Director and Head Men's Basketball Coach, my job is to not only lead by example, but also to give the blueprint for success. For me the blueprint is this: HARD WORK, DEDICATION, and PERSERVERANCE. These three things will take you further than even you think you can go. This is the blueprint, which gives me the opportunity to lead by example, to share my experiences, and to touch those who may be going through the same type of experience or are in need of an extra push. This is the same blueprint I have brought to Bristol University, my Bristol team, and it's the same blueprint I hope to instill in all of our student-athletes.
Check out our students sharing their study experience at Bristol University