One of the key reasons for starting this blog was so that we could highlight some of the successes that have come out of the CSUF Entrepreneurship program, which we call CSUF Entrepreneurship Success Stories. One such success is Tim Mensalvas and here, in his own words, is what he has been up to since he graduated in 2012. Enjoy!
Since CSUF, I’ve volunteered my time to start 3 non-profit community based organizations and now I currently work full time for the Center for Sustainable Energy- a nonprofit focused on clean energy program administration and advisory services.
My first non-profit project, Eco-Rooted, stemmed from my Entrepreneurship course project at CSUF. Thanks to professor Jackson, he sparked an interest in entrepreneurship and the possibilities at hand. Because of the class course, I was able to combine my passion for the environment, outdoors, and my community to create a business plan for an organization I truly cared about. The Eco-Rooted mission was simple, to increase environmental awareness – so we focused on hosting events to help educate the community on the importance of making environmentally conscious decisions.
By curating and hosting community cleanup events, we were able to attract local eco-minded vendors and influential people and organizations from our community to celebrate the environment in a family friendly and community-focused environment. One of our major achievements included a paid partnership with the City of Oceanside to host their Kids Eco-Zone during their Earth Day event. In the Eco-Zone we helped to entertain and educate the youth of our community through fun educational games, arts and crafts, and prizes.
After an Eco-Rooted board member and good friend, Forrester Cravens, passed away in a tragic accident with his girlfriend – we decided to pivot our efforts to celebrate his life and continue his legacy – so the Forrester David Cravens Foundation was born. Instead of solely focusing on environmental awareness, we turned our mission towards supporting the creative youth of our community by providing creative scholarships to our alma mater – Vista High School. We pride ourselves on taking everything sustainability related we learned through Eco-Rooted and applying it our daily lives, events, and merchandise. We even continue to host an annual beach cleanup for the Summer Fun on the 101 music festival which started with Eco-Rooted 9 years ago!
The FDC Foundation is currently on its 8th year anniversary, has handed out over 10 scholarships, hosted several workshops, and donated and partnered with other local organizations striving to improve the lives of the youth of our community. Our annual fundraiser, Infinite Expression, is a family friendly event hosted in the spring and is our main source of scholarship funding. We always aim to throw a unique event that brings together our community of students, artists, musicians, and creatives to not only showcase their latest art work, but also foster collaboration and inspire self-expression for future generations of artists.
Most recently, I was asked to be on the board of SOS Oceanside, which is a local group of advocates working to grow awareness and help steer local authorities to be proactive about the disappearing sand on our beaches – which is affecting tourism, properties, local wildlife, and safe beach access. Our most recent victory included a 100% vote by the City Council of Oceanside to draft a feasibility plan to take action.
I am now a LEED Green Associate and work full time at the Center for Sustainable Energy as a Project Coordinator with a focus on Clean Transportation and the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP). CVRP is a state funded program aimed at helping to accelerate electric vehicle market adoption which will help to reduce the harmful emissions from traditional gas fueled cars. I work directly with dealerships and municipalities to help educate their staff on the incentives available for clean vehicles. CSE has played a vital role in the clean energy movement by helping to influence policy, implement climate action plans, and administer several clean energy state programs across the nation.
Since college, I’ve striven to make sure my career efforts are passion-driven, and I’m very thankful that CSUF’s business program not only inspired me set high goals, but also give me the tools to achieve them.
We are dedicated to helping the next generation of entrepreneurs develop the skills that they need to compete locally and globally. The CSUF Entrepreneurship program does many things,