I am Francesca ChiChai Mateo-- an artist, a traveller, a writer, a student, an entrepreneur, and a community gatherer from the San Francisco Bay Area.

To put it in a nutshell that is.


I graduated as a Master of Arts in International Studies  at the University of San Francisco (USF) in December 2016.

I earned the award Most Original Research from the USF International Studies department for my thesis Challenging Filipino colonial mentality through art. 

I earned my bachelor’s  at San Jose State University in 2013 with a major in Global Studies and a minor in Journalism- Magazine Editing and Writing.

Involvement in University of San Francisco

 I served as the Outreach Intern for USF’s University Ministry, the university's hub for social justice and inclusive spiritual involvement. I also served as a teacher assistant for the undergraduate class "Anthropology of Advertising and Consumer Culture."



Along with being a student, I founded the streetwear brand Empire in the Air.

Founded in 2010, I began Empire in the Air to chase my own dreams: utilize fashion, art, writing and travel to give back to those who inspired me along the way. The word “Empire” represents that legacy I’m striving for and “in the air” signifies everyone that said my head was in the clouds.

Now, it is not only about my dreams, but about all of yours.  Through Empire in the Air's community  involvement and the designs in our products, my team and I aim to provide a platform of support for other "dream-chasers."

My roles for Empire in the Air include Art Director, blogger, designer and an overseer of the following aspects: marketing, media content, and community events.

With my education and experience, my goal is to lead combining efforts for positively impacting the world while inspiring others to do the same.