Colleen Busby is a Political Science major who enrolled at Fresno State as a first-year student in the Smittcamp Family Honors College. She is a Central Valley native from Visalia who decided to pursue a career in law because her brother was killed by a drunk driver when he was just four years old and she witnessed her family’s pain and suffering during court proceedings. She says attending Fresno State was the best choice for her and she’s had many opportunities for personal and academic growth.  

“As I got deeper into the major, I fell in love with learning about political parties, governmental structures, and more. I also pursued minors in History and Economics. I found that these three subjects worked together well.”

Busby shared her academic experience at Fresno State in a Q&A

6A683F55-E708-47F1-9B3C-2D50D47BA989What is your career goal? 

After graduation, I plan to attend law school at the University of Southern California (USC). I hope to one day work in criminal justice here in the Central Valley, as a district attorney or a public defender. 

What do you think about the College of Social Sciences and our professors?

The College of Social Sciences has been immensely supportive. Every faculty member I have interacted with has been nothing but helpful. I feel like the faculty here takes a genuine interest in their students, beyond the classroom. I am particularly thankful for Dr. Bryant and Dr. Clune, for always having an open door, ready to listen. They have both encouraged me and taught me so much during my time at Fresno State.  

Did you experience any challenges as a student?

I am a first generation college student so a lot of the time, I am finding my own path. 

What is your most memorable experience at Fresno State?


I have loved my time at Fresno State because it has allowed me to try so many new things! Some highlights include studying abroad during the winter intersession in London, becoming a certified cycle instructor for the Rec Center, attending football games with all my friends, interning for two congressmen, an assemblyman, and the Public Defender’s and District Attorney’s Office, as well as competing all over the country with the Fresno State Mock Trial team for four years.

How do you feel about being recognized as an outstanding student?

I am incredibly honored to have been chosen as an outstanding student. I am so grateful to my friends, family, and professors. I could not have done any of this without their encouragement and support! 

How do you think the COSS prepared you for the future?  

8FB2306E-F261-4553-A35D-331CB535D8D6The education I have received from the COSS has been phenomenal. I have become a better writer, a better student, and a better person. I know I will take the skills and ideals I have learned here with me on to law school. I feel completely prepared for higher education and my career beyond that, largely due to COSS. 

What do you see yourself doing in 10 years?

I see myself practicing law in the Central Valley. It is very important to me that I give back to my community. 

What is your advice for other students?

Don’t be afraid to try something new! It is okay to be nervous or scared! You’ll never know if you never try! 

Recently, Busby’s inspirational story was featured in Fresno State News for achieving at the highest levels after overcoming remarkable challenges.