Ellen J. Neufeldt
Two-time Tennessee Tech graduate, 2022 Distinguished Alumna Award recipient, California State University San Marcos President and grand marshal for the 2022 Tech homecoming, Ellen J. Neufeldt, knows how to live Wings Up.
“Tech has been a part of me all my life, and the honor really goes to my parents and the life they lived and created for Tech students. Anything I have accomplished started with them,” Neufeldt said.
Harvey Neufeldt was a College of Education professor at Tech for nearly 40 years, and Anne Neufeldt served as an administrative assistant in Tech’s Department of Electrical Engineering. All three of their daughters – Ellen Neufeldt, Sharon Carter and Beverly Wagner – are Tech graduates.
“The 2022 homecoming was special for me to be back at Tennessee Tech, a place that was such a big part of my life – and not just during college but almost my entire formative experience,” she said.
Neufeldt received her bachelor’s degree in marketing and master’s degree in educational psychology and counselor education from Tech and her doctorate in education from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville.
In 2019, Neufeldt became the fourth president of CSUSM and immediately focused on engaging, interacting, listening and building relationships with students, faculty, staff, alumni and community constituents. A champion of innovation and entrepreneurship, Neufeldt oversaw the opening of CSUSM’s Innovation Hub, an on-campus home for meeting societal needs, less than a year into her tenure. A nationally-recognized expert in student social mobility, Neufeldt is a champion of student success and inclusive excellence. She was named San Diego Business Journal CEO of the Year in 2022.
“Tennessee Tech gave me the opportunity to really grow as a person,” she said. “It was where I learned I could achieve great things, from public speaking to connecting with students and the community. My education there was a springboard to my entire career. I can trace so many things I’ve been able to accomplish back to my journey at Tech.”