Astronaut Encourages PUC students to Reach for the Stars

By Staff Writer on November 11, 2015

Pacific Union College welcomed back former NASA astronaut Jose Hernández as guest speaker for the November 5th Colloquy Speakers Series. Students from PUC, PUC Preparatory School, and PUC Elementary were inspired by Hernández’s personal journey from the strawberry fields of California’s Central Valley all the way to his 5.7-million-mile voyage with the International Space Station in 2009. Hernández encouraged students to persevere in their lifelong pursuit of ambitious goals. “It’s ok to dream big. It is ok to set very high standards, very high goals for yourselves,” he said to a packed PUC Church. The son of migrant farm workers who traveled with the growing seasons from Michoacán, Mexico to the farmlands of California, Hernández grew up picking fruits and vegetables alongside his brothers and sisters. He didn’t learn to speak English until he was 12. His parents, despite having only a third-grade education themselves, did their best to keep the children in school as much as possible as they moved with the crops. At the age of nine, Hernández discovered his dream of becoming an astronaut when he watched the final Apollo lunar mission on TV. “I would go outside and see the moon in its full glory. Then,...
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PUC Adds Two New Health-related Business Degrees

By Emily Mathe & Jennifer Tyner on October 19, 2015

Pacific Union College has a rich history of equipping students with a passion for health ministry and leading lives of productive service in the industry. With employment of medical and health services managers to grow by 23% by the year 2022, PUC’s department of business expands its educational offerings to meet this demand. The Bachelor of Science in management for medical professionals is designed for students who wish to combine a pre-professional track (such as pre-medicine and pre-dentistry) with a business degree. The program will provide students with a greater knowledge of management principles for the purpose of starting a practice, becoming a healthcare leader, or gaining a better understanding of the industry prior to entering graduate studies. “Young Medical Professionals (M.D., D.D.S., D.O., D.P.T., Pharm.D., etc.) are entering a challenging work environment with the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and its emphasis on efficient and effective operations and quality management in healthcare settings,” says John Nunes, associate professor of business. “Having a business degree to supplement the sciences needed to succeed in medical and allied health professional programs will enhance the ability of young medical professionals to deliver a pleasurable experience for patients at sustainable levels of...
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Students Commit to Spiritual Growth During PUC’s Annual Fall Revival

By Staff Writer on October 13, 2015

Pacific Union College presented its annual fall revival week from Monday, Oct. 5, through Sabbath, Oct. 10. The week’s featured speaker, Campus Chaplain Jonathan Henderson, focused on “The Adventist Advantage,” a platform developed by President Heather Knight which emphasizes the value of being Seventh-day Adventist in a contemporary world. The week’s events were designed to emphasize the seven points of “The Adventist Advantage,” which are meaning and purpose found by a connection with Christ as our personal savior; health, wellness, and a wholesome lifestyle; education, caring about the life of the mind and lifelong learning; ethics and morals; generous service; diversity; and stewardship of the earth, which is tied to the Sabbath. Services were packed with shared testimonies, special musical, and heartfelt prayers. Henderson emphasized the importance of the PUC campus becoming a cohesive, support-driven community, with every member fully committed to “fighting for the rights of those who are marginalized.” Henderson also called for an increase in the mindset of service, which is intended to be a key component of the PUC experience. “If you’re willing to let Christ be your companion,” Henderson claimed, “then you will have a happiness that will never fade.” Various altar calls during the...
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Opening Convocation Address Sets Pace for New School Year

By Emily Mathe on October 9, 2015

Pacific Union College kicked off its 2015-16 academic year on Thursday, September 24, with the Opening Convocation, where speaker Dr. Arnetha F. Ball encouraged students to pursue God’s plans for them during their time at PUC. The service began with the traditional procession by PUC faculty in full academic regalia. The string section of the PUC orchestra followed with a brief musical performance. President Heather J. Knight welcomed a packed PUC Church to the beginning of the new school year and introduced Dr. Ball, whom she befriended while working on her doctoral degree at Stanford University. Christian vocalist Margie Rice Oliver wowed the audience with a solo of “I Believe,” a song chosen specifically to align with the Convocation theme. Dr. Ball, professor of education and co-director for the Center for Race, Ethnicity and Language (CREAL) at Stanford University, set the tone for the academic school year. She told students God’s plan for them involved the Christian education being provided for them at PUC. “I believe that God has a plan for your life,” she asserted. “You’re here, right where God wants you to be,” she affirmed. Ball’s talk, entitled “I Believe,” drew from her personal history growing up in...
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PUC Welcomes Back Students

By Staff Writer on September 22, 2015

Summer break is officially over for PUC students. As classes begin, the campus celebrates the commencement of the new school year with the annual Week of Welcome (WOW) celebration. WOW events aim to introduce students to the PUC campus and community and include an exciting mix of academic, social, and spiritual activities. “We are thrilled about the beginning of a new academic year at Pacific Union College with all of its wondrous possibilities,” said Dr. Heather Knight, PUC’s president. “The Week of Welcome is a very special time for students to experience the warmth and hospitality of the PUC community while having a lot of fun and bonding together.” Even before the first 8:00 a.m. class commenced Monday morning, members of the campus community mobilized to invite the Lord to bless the new academic year. On Sunday night, individuals gathered in front of Irwin Hall to participate in the annual campus prayer walk. PUC Chaplains Jonathan Henderson and Shantel Smith along with PUC Church Pastor Mark Witas led students, faculty, staff, pastors, church members, and administrators in joint prayers. The group broke into five teams and travelled all over campus, praying for each building, its occupants, and PUC! Robell Nyirendah,...
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Valley Fire Threatens Lake and Napa Counties

By Staff Writer on September 13, 2015

On Saturday, September 12, a fast moving wildfire broke out about 1:24 p.m. in the Lake County area of Northern California. Known as the Valley Fire, it continues to advance, and currently 50,000 acres have been burned with zero containment. On Sunday, Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency for the areas impacted by the fire. Overnight, the fire moved into Pope Valley (Napa County) and created a mandatory precautionary evacuation in parts of North Angwin. The college and the town of Angwin have not been evacuated and are not in immediate danger at this time. Remaining under mandatory evacuation are the communities of Cobb, Hidden Valley Lake, Loch Lomond, Middletown and Seigler Canyon; Highway 29/Highway 53 in Lower Lake to Highway 29 at Tubbs Lane in Calistoga in Napa County; Butts Canyon Road to the Napa County line, including Berryessa Estates; and Butts Canyon Road to Pope Valley. According to the Sheriff's Office, advisory evacuations are in effect for Livermore Road, Summit Lake Road and north of the community of Angwin. An incident Command Center opened at Pacific Union College in the parking lot located beside the Advancement Office last night. Winning Hall is open to offer temporary...
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PUC Student Accepted into Leadership Development Program

By Staff Writer on August 20, 2015

Christopher Lawrence, a junior accounting major, was among 33 college students and recent graduates accepted into the 2015 Leadership Development program at Adventist Health Systems. One of over 100 applicants from a variety of higher education institutions, Lawrence is the only student from California and one of three students from the west coast selected to participate. The competitive selection process focused on a combination of quantitative and qualitative factors such as academic performance, community service, leadership potential, and an interest in the health care industry. “This program serves as a vehicle to launch them into a career in health care,” said Norman Miles, AHS’s director of Leadership Development, in a report released by the organization. “It’s an awesome opportunity for interns and residents to develop a deeper understanding of the nuances within the industry, hone their skill sets, and develop a context around what they need to do to prepare for a career in health care.” During his 12-week internship at Adventist Heath’s Florida Hospital Tampa, Lawrence is gaining hands-on experience in areas such as supply chain, human resources, and patient financial services. “So far, I have worked on numerous projects this summer, ranging from strategic operations to finance and...
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PUC Fundraising Class Raises $5,000 for Nonprofits

By Sierra Wisehart on August 17, 2015

Pacific Union College’s Communication Department has been offering their Fundraising for Nonprofits course for years, but the spring quarter of 2015 was different. Rather than simply learning the techniques necessary to fundraise, students in the class were challenged to put their skills to the test by partnering with real non-profits to raise money for authentic causes. Student groups were required to plan, design, and implement an online crowdfunding campaign as well as write a script, shoot a campaign video, design a brochure, and volunteer for at least four hours at a non-profit event, among other class assignments. “I wanted students to have not only an active learning environment but something to put on their resumes,” said Michelle Rai, professor of the fundraising course and chair of the communication department. Rai posted a status update on Facebook seeking nonprofit organizations to be “guinea pigs” for her class. She received numerous volunteers and her students selected the final 10 nonprofit organizations to work with during the quarter. “I was thrilled to learn that students in Prof[essor] Rai’s fundraising class chose Clinica Verde for their project,” said Susan Dix Lyons, founder of Clinica Verde, a medical facility for women and children in Nicaragua....
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Pacific Union College Launches New Online Nursing Degree

By Martin Surridge on July 21, 2015

This summer, Pacific Union College is enrolling adult students for a new fully online degree program, an RN to BSN in Nursing. This WASC-approved degree program is designed for registered nurses who are interested in career advancement. Classes start August 31, 2015, for the 100% online program, PUC is the first Seventh-day Adventist college or university in the western United States to offer an online RN to BSN degree. New students may enroll at various times throughout the year, as classes are offered in a flexible format designed to meet the scheduling needs of working adults, according to William Chunestudy, Ph.D., PUC’s Associate Academic Dean for Distance and Adult Learning, and the college’s lead administrator for the new initiative. A generous transfer credit policy allows prepared students to earn a RN-BSN degree in as little as one year. “Nursing is currently PUC’s largest on-campus program” Chunestudy stated, “and beginning our new online initiative with this RN-to-BSN program makes sense in terms both of resources and potential students.” The online nursing program is the first program to be introduced as part of PUC’s distance and adult learning initiatives. With a goal to roll out new online degrees each year, “PUC promises...
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Pacific Union College Graduates 350 Students

By Staff Writer on June 11, 2015

Pacific Union College will host its annual commencement weekend Friday, June 12 through Sunday, June 14 in Angwin, Calif. Approximately 350 degrees will be awarded during the PUC ceremony: 150 associate degrees, 225 bachelor degrees, and 5 masters degrees. Departments with the largest graduates include nursing and health sciences (191), business administration (31), communication (18) and biology (17). Students and family members are invited to attend. The ceremonies will take place at Pacific Union College Church and Commencement Grove located on the college campus. PUC President Heather J. Knight will host a reception for graduates, parents and faculty on Saturday, June 13 at 5:30 PM. The reception will be held in the campus Dining Commons. Jonathan Henderson, campus chaplain at Pacific Union College, will speak for the Consecration Service, scheduled at 8 p.m., Friday, June 12 at the Pacific Union College Church. The Baccalaureate Service will begin at 11:15 a.m. Saturday June 13, with Pacific Union College senior pastor Mark Witas, M.Div., addressing the graduates. Susan Stanton, Vice President of Patient Care Services and Chief Nursing Officer at Queen of the Valley Medical Center in Napa will deliver the address during the Nursing Graduate Recognition Service, scheduled for 4 p.m....
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