Cat Truong ('14) Makes Mural for Zag Family

Cat Truong (’14) in front of the mural she created in Gonzaga's advancement office. (Photo by Zack Berlat)
February 20, 2020
By Harry Smith (’21)

SPOKANE, Wash. — In the spirit of developing the whole person, Gonzaga University alumna Cat Truong put her engineering and artistic talents to use recently designing and creating a mural for the University’s alumni office.

Truong, a 2014 graduate of the School of Engineering and Applied Science, noticed an empty space inside the University Advancement building on Boone Avenue and Hamilton Street and became inspired to fill the void with art that is at once meaningful to the alumni family and attractive.

Cat Truong (’14) in front of the mural she created in Gonzaga's advancement office. (Photo by Zack Berlat)
Cat Truong (’14) in front of the mural. (Photo by Zack Berlat)
“I initially got involved with creating something for a space that had been blank for a while. I pitched the idea to Drew Rieder and Kara Hertz (alumni office directors) and they were on board,” Truong said.

Truong created an image that embodies the places where Gonzaga students are represented around the globe.

“The mural is a map of the United States, along with Canada, Florence, Italy, and Japan. One of Gonzaga’s missions, to develop intercultural competence, is highlighted in the many study abroad programs it offers, the most popular one being Florence. It also sounds like we had a surprisingly large representation of alumni in Japan, as well,” said Truong.

Getting the opportunity to create a lasting art piece at my alma mater is very special to me and ties in the ‘Zags for Life’ motto that I always heard as an undergrad and continue to experience post-college.
Cat Truong ('14)
The mural is painted red and blue against a white background — Gonzaga’s school color palette. It also features quotes and people that are special to Gonzaga. But you need to look carefully to find them.

“The piece highlights influential people that have impacted Gonzaga, the University’s activities and programs, as well as the Mission Statement. It is a little hidden, so you might have to dig into your best detective skills,” Truong said.

Rieder, director of regional alumni chapters, believes that the mural stands as a testament to both the global reach and talents of Gonzaga alumni.

“The Zag Nation mural boldly represents our alumni and friends who live across the country and all over the world,” said Rieder. “Cat’s contribution to our unique alumni space will be an enduring, creative expression for years to come.”

‘Zags for Life’

Truong reflected on the personal significance of painting the mural.

“Getting the opportunity to create a lasting art piece at my alma mater is very special to me and ties in the ‘Zags for Life’ motto that I always heard as an undergrad and continue to experience post-college,” said Truong.

For Truong, this mural signifies the growing opportunities for Gonzaga and its alumni.

“It’s an exciting time to be a Zag, but it always has been, and I truly think it always will be,” she added.

  • Academics
  • Alumni
  • Service & Community Impact
  • School of Engineering & Applied Sciences
  • University Advancement
  • Alumni
  • News Center