PUC Updates

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President Cushman

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A Statement from President Cushman

By President Cushman on June 3, 2020

Dear PUC Family, I take responsibility and apologize for the delay in PUC's response to the current issues of racism and injustice that are tearing at the very fabric of our society and impacting many in our campus family. There have been a lot of difficult conversations happening on our beloved college campus, and as a result, the message that I'm sharing with you today is different from the message that I would have written even a few days ago. As a college, we have celebrated our diversity, been recognized and awarded for our diversity, and marketed our diversity. But we have failed to understand the actual needs that come with our diversity.I never want PUC to be a school that only stands up for you when your pain hits the headlines. I want us to be the school that supports you every single day and prepares you to be the leaders that our communities, our churches, and our country need more than ever. If we expect tomorrow to be better for future generations, we have to behave differently today.Judging from the stories that have been shared with me over the last several days, it is clear that we have...

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Pacific Union College Receives CARES Act Funds as Part of COVID-19 Support for Students

By Ashley Eisele on June 3, 2020

Pacific Union College received $569,112 from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to provide emergency financial aid grants directly to PUC students affected by the COVID-19 crisis.The college received the funds on April 28 and by mid-May, close to $300,000 had already been distributed to 394 students. PUC estimates around 400 students are eligible to receive grants from this federal fund, which is intended to support those who are experiencing unforeseen hardship from the COVID-10 global pandemic. This includes students who need additional support for their education.“We are grateful we received the CARES Act funds and that we can reach so many students with the additional assistance,” said J.R. Rogers, PUC’s Associate Vice President of Student Life. “Some students couldn’t do online learning because they didn’t have computers and some have parents who are now out of work and needed to help support their families. Almost anything you can imagine being an issue is the reality for our students right now.”Another avenue of support for PUC students affected by the pandemic has come from the college’s Coronavirus Student Emergency Fund. The fund was started early in the crisis as the needs of PUC students started to become...

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PUC Nursing Program Granted Continuing Accreditation through 2027

By Staff Writer on April 27, 2020

Pacific Union College’s associate nursing program has been granted continuing accreditation through 2027 by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN). “Congratulations on this outstanding achievement! We look forward to continued successes for your nursing program,” the formal notification from ACEN’s Chief Executive Officer, Marsal P. Stoll, read. “On behalf of the Board of Commissioners, we thank you and your colleagues for your commitment to quality nursing education.”The college’s associate nursing program is part of the department of nursing and health sciences, PUC’s largest department. The college also recently received a Top 25 ranking by Gradreports for undergraduate nursing schools.“We are very pleased to receive this long-term continuation of our accreditation,” said Milbert Mariano, PUC’s Academic Dean. “This achievement speaks to the excellence of the program and the trust that ACEN has in our longevity. Most importantly, it validates the commitment we have to our nursing students today and into the future.”...

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In Response to Notice of Concern, PUC Focuses on Turnaround Plan

By Staff Writer on April 14, 2020

In response to Pacific Union College's (PUC) most recent accreditation report to WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), the college received a Notice of Concern from the accreditation commission and has responded accordingly by notifying WSCUC of recent financial updates. PUC has already begun the implementation of a two-year turnaround plan, which will address the concerns outlined in the Notice.The letter of concern was triggered when the college self-reported its financial challenges to WSCUC in November 2019. The Notice, which was received by the college's administration in March 2020, praised PUC for its transparency to candidly address the financial difficulties the college has undergone. The college also received praise for already taking steps for improvement, engaging the entire campus, including the Board of Trustees, in financial and enrollment planning, and adhering to the college's mission even when responding to challenges.PUC President Bob Cushman said, "We take this very seriously. A notice of concern from one's accrediting body is an alert to an institution that, if current trends continue, the institution will be out of compliance with one or more accreditation standards. In our case, this relates specifically to PUC's financial situation, which we are aggressively working to address."PUC has...

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Coronavirus Update

By Staff Writer on March 18, 2020

For up-to-date information please visit our Coronavirus Updates and Resources page.Napa County has confirmed that two quarantined patients are now under isolation at a county medical facility after being transported back to the United States. PUC is taking this development seriously, but it is not a cause for alarm.One of the affected patients has tested positive for nCoV2019, commonly known as novel coronavirus, while the second is still being monitored while in isolation. Both were transported to the Queen of the Valley Medical Center on Monday directly from Travis Air Force Base after arriving in the United States from Japan where they were under quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship.There is minimal risk for the PUC campus and surrounding area at this time."Out of caution, the patients are being monitored in special isolation rooms that have negative pressure to minimize the risk of exposure," Amy Herold, M.D., Chief Medical Officer at Queen of the Valley, said. "We are following established infection control protocols and working closely with our partners at CDC and Napa County Public Health to ensure the safety and well-being of our caregivers, patients, and visitors."Preventative measures for the viral outbreak are no different than precautions...

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U.S. News & World Report Ranks PUC in Top Ten Colleges

By Staff Writer on March 18, 2020

The U.S. News & World Report has released its annual Best Colleges list, and Pacific Union College has again been ranked in the top ten colleges. PUC was placed in the top 15 in the following categories:#10 in Regional Colleges West#7 in Best Colleges for Veterans#4 in Best Value Schools#14 in Top Performers on Social Mobility#1 in Campus Ethnic Diversity (West)"We are incredibly proud of our rankings in U.S. News & World Report," says Milbert Mariano, academic dean at PUC. "These results speak to the quality of a PUC education, as well as an overall PUC experience that puts students at the heart."Regional Colleges are split into four regions and are placed in this category based on the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education's Basic Classification system, the accepted standard in U.S. education. A few of the factors and weights included in the methodology are graduation and retention rates, graduation rate performance, social mobility, faculty and financial resources, student excellence, and alumni giving. PUC is the only Adventist school in the top ten.Best Colleges for Veterans are selected based on meeting the following criteria: certified for the GI Bill, participates in the Yellow Ribbon Program, for the third consecutive...

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Professional Opportunities for Student to Thrive at the 2020 Career Day Fair

By Sarah Tanner on March 11, 2020

Thursday, March 5, PUC's dining commons side room filled with representatives from a variety of local and statewide businesses. The annual career day fair draws a number of interested companies and post-graduate institutions interested in our graduates. Individuals from a wide array of backgrounds offered networking tips and career-oriented conversation, including the Adventist Health network, Discoveryland Preschool, St. Josephs, and the United States Army, Navy, and Marshall offices.In addition to the general post-graduate career opportunities presented during the fair, a number groups came to inform students of summer internships programs. Many of these programs are located near the PUC campus, and are especially convenient for students planning to stay in the Napa Valley area over the summer.Nearby recreation areas such as Lake Berryessa often require more willing bodies during the busy summer season. Margaret Bailey, Berryessa's park manager, came to the career day fair to scout students interested in park ranger positions."Our mission is to provide a quality recreation experience for visitors and part of that is having good rangers," she explained. "During the summer we hire temporary rangers, and many of the students here qualify to work seasonally."In addition to offering a steady hourly wage, this position also opens...

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Maranatha at PUC: Coming Together to Build Up Our Campus

By Lauren Vandenhoven on December 27, 2019

For three weeks this summer community members, students, active and retired PUC faculty, and Maranatha volunteers worked together to renovate 31 student dorm rooms in Newton Hall, one of PUC's four residence halls.Each person had a specific job to do, including building and installing cabinets, replacing dressers and countertops, putting in new ceiling lights, wall patching, repainting, and prepping for and laying down new flooring. Eighty-one total volunteers contributed to the project with an average of 35 to 45 per day, and nearly half were first-time volunteers.Project coordinator Ed Jensen started doing volunteer work about 40 years ago, but became much more involved when he retired. For this project, he helped to register and provide information for volunteers."When a volunteer comes to the job, their housing and food is provided. They just need to come," he says. "And when these people work, they really put their heart into it."Heidi Lukowicz, graphic designer for the college and first-time Maranatha volunteer, decided to help with this project because she wanted to give her young sons the experience of volunteering and connect them to Maranatha and the larger PUC community."It's amazing how fast you can get something done with many hands," says Lukowicz....

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Conservation and Technological Innovation: Dr. Scott Butterfield’s Lecture Series on the Future of Conservation Biology

By Sarah Tanner on December 13, 2019

Scott Butterfield, a senior scientist with The Nature Conservancy, conducted a series of four lectures throughout the quarter at Pacific Union College, sharing his passion for conservation with the college's department of biology. His last lecture, titled, "Training the Conservation Scientist for the Next Generation," included a distillation of new technologies and avenues of inquiry in the field of conservation.Dr. Aimee Wyrick's Conservation Biology students absorbed every word of Butterfield's final presentation. He emphasized the importance of incorporating data science across different disciplines, especially as it has the potential to involve students, such as the ones in this class, in important research."Data science is a huge topic in conservation right now," he explained. "It is essentially a conceptualization of what it would mean to train the future generations in this field."His talk centered on the fact that we live in an "anthropocene" era, meaning that in our current time, humans have a disproportionate impact on the climate and environment. We also are in the midst of a third industrial revolution, one that centers on technology.Butterfield then explained the endless ties between technological developments and conservation efforts, noting, "Virtually every project we carry out in The Nature Conservancy involves a combination...

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PUC Accredited by National Association for Schools of Art & Design

By Becky St. Clair on December 11, 2019

Pacific Union College's department of visual arts has been accredited by the National Association for Schools of Art & Design (NASAD), the primary accrediting body for all top art and design schools in the country."We felt like being aligned officially with an accrediting body was an important step to validate the quality of art education at PUC," explains Rajeev Sigamoney, chair of the department.Accreditation through NASAD puts PUC in association with over 360 other accredited schools, of which PUC is the only one affiliated with the Adventist Church."From this relationship, we will gain an even greater understanding of best practices in all disciplines we teach, and organizational processes to make sure the department handles every aspect of art education at the highest possible level," Sigamoney says.The accreditation process began nearly four years ago, and included reviewing requirements, meeting with NASAD representatives, and a college self-study of over 200 pages to ensure every aspect of PUC meets the highest standards possible."We were able to look at ourselves in the mirror and continue to push for improvements," Sigamoney says. The self-study and feedback from NASAD led to changes to the department's programs and facilities, bringing PUC in line with NASAD's high standards.The...

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