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Pacific Union College Builds to the Future

By Brydon Marks on December 18, 2007

In the summer of 1982, bulldozers advanced on Old Irwin Hall, the signature building on the campus of Pacific Union College. The building—whose construction began in 1912—housed the chapel, administration offices, and classrooms that were the heart of college activities for several succeeding generations. Though beloved, the edifice was declared structurally unsound. It was condemned to demolition. When the wrecking crews finally withdrew, only a clean-swept garden lawn remained at the head of the campus mall. Today, nearly 20 years later, PUC has begun raising the funds required to build a new library on the site of Old Irwin Hall—a library that will not only provide a needed facility, but that will socially and visually resurrect a treasured campus icon. PUC is asking its constituents to prayerfully consider helping with this project as the college rises to the challenges of education in the 21st century. Though incorporating the best elements of contemporary architectural design, the new library will carry a look reminiscent of Old Irwin Hall—a look featured most prominently in a campanile, modeled after the distinguished face that looked across PUC’s campus for 70 years. The new library is also expected to become a center of student life, containing...

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PUC Opens Napa Valley Community Resource Center

By Brydon Marks on November 14, 2007

Pacific Union College announces the grand opening of the Napa Valley Community Resource Center, a facility for educational resources located at 25 Executive Court, Napa, near the intersection of Highways 12 and 29. The center will provide educational opportunities for Napa and the surrounding communities, including teacher credentialing and adult education programs. The center, first proposed in 1996, is funded in part by a grant adminestered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. It was made possible by the help of many members of congress including Congressman Mike Thompson. The resource center is already used nightly by PUC's degree completion program. It houses six groups of adult students who are completing degrees in business management or early childhood education. They have used classrooms in the building since the beginning of March. PUC is also working with the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing to supply credentialing programs for Napa area teachers. Beginning in the fall, the resource center will be a central site, providing course-work, classroom supervision, mentoring, and other more-more -more training necessary to equip community teachers-many of whom have been hired on an emergency basis-with the full credentials required by the state. The Napa Valley Resource Center...

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The Hansen Collection Brings Wildlife to PUC

By Brydon Marks on November 13, 2007

On the terrace level of Clark Hall, the recently rebuilt biology department building at Pacific Union College, there is a special room in which visitors come within inches of over 40 species of wild animals. Protected only by a velvet rope, viewers can gaze into the gentle eyes of a cape buffalo, a black wildebeest, or a sable antelope, or can stand beneath the monumental head of a real elephant. The adventurous can even find themselves face to face with a prowling mountain lion, a snarling tiger, or a roaring bear - Oh my! This unique experience is contained in the Hansen Collection, a special collection of stuffed game animals from around the world now on permanent display at PUC. The Hansen Collection is a rare gathering of large animals from North America, Africa, and Asia. Kodiak and polar bears stand as silent sentinels at the doors of the exhibit, and a leopard, tiger, and mountain lion, lurk about the corners of the room, anticipating the coming arrival of a jaguar from South America. The museum boasts a prized "grand slam" of the four North American mountain sheep - the Rocky Mountain bighorn, the desert bighorn, the Dall sheep, and...

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Students "Let-it-Growl" for Hurricane Victims

By Brydon Marks on November 13, 2007

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst.On March 4th, PUC students fasted for a day in response to the incredible devastation suffered in Honduras in the wake of the tremendous hurricane that hammered the country last year. Their project, entitled "Let-it-Growl," set out to raise money for the hurricane victims. However, for many it helped to create an awareness of this disaster, as well as to establish the role of Christians as active ministers in a world of suffering.When hurricane Mitch hit the Central American country of Honduras last November, the death toll reached into the thousands and is growing every day as the waters recede and more bodies are discovered. Homes, neighborhoods, and entire cities were destroyed in the hurricane's floods and mudslides. Seventy percent of the nation's agricultural sector was destroyed by water, as well as seventy percent of its roads, bridges, and water supplies. Millions have been left without food, water, shelter, or medical resources, and the problem is only exacerbated by the fact that Honduras' major population centers are cut off from both Pacific and Caribbean ports. Many regions are still only accessible by air.Against such a backdrop of devastation, PUC students began to search for...

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Nursing Students Bring the Health Fair to St. Helena High School

By Brydon Marks on November 13, 2007

On Friday, January 26, over 400 students at St. Helena High School went to see the nurse. The nurse that day, however, was actually more than 50 nursing students from Pacific Union College. Armed with a barrage of information on a variety of health topics, they had come to present a health fair, an informative and educational exhibition on the many facets of personal health. The fair was organized by 28 baccalaureate nursing students as a project for the class "Health Education, Promotion, and Self Care" in PUC's nursing program. Sharon Millard, associate professor of nursing, says that it is an important assignment for the students, as well as a community service. "We are trying to get our students into a mode of thinking that involves community service and working with community resources to educate the youth in our valley," she says. The nurses were assisted by more than two dozen volunteer students studying at PUC for an associate's degree in nursing. They were joined by other Napa Valley health programs. Members of PUC's behavioral science, biology, and physical education departments also lent their expertise to the project. The fair incorporated information on stress management, personal safety, responsible self care,...

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Social work students collect school supplies for community

By Brydon Marks on November 13, 2007

Fiona Bullock, assistant professor of social work, is proud to display the most mismatched set of backpacks ever collected. There are twenty-five of them, each of vastly different shape, size, and color. Pastels, earth tones, and vibrant, basic colors lie jumbled together like a box of crayons kicked onto the floor. Duffel bags, gym bags, and back-packs are equally thrown into the heap. The casual observer would never associate these bags with one another and that is the whole idea. These bags were not collected to be a fashion statement, but a covert operation. They will be given out in secret and were chosen so that-when seen trundling around a school next year, slung over shoulders and jammed into lockers-no one will ever know where they came from. Neither will they know about the school supplies and health items that once filled these bags. The motley collection is only part of "The Backpack Project," the final project of six seniors graduating from Pacific Union College this June with degrees in social work. The students have worked all year with Angwin Adventist Community Services to raise funds and supplies, and in August will give the fully stocked packs to 25 students...

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Parents' Weekend Scheduled for October 24 - 26

By By Brydon Marks on November 12, 2007

A very special weekend, October 24-26, is returning to Pacific Union College... a chance to visit the campus that has become your child's home away from your home... a chance to talk with the men and women who are teaching your child and preparing him or her for a life beyond the college walls... and most importantly, an opportunity to spend time with your son or daughter talking around the dinner table, worshiping together in celebration, and exploring their world. If you have a son or daughter enrolled at PUC, we would like to invite you to come to Parents' Weekend, a family time on campus when students and their parents can get together to share the joys of the lives they have given one another. Over the weekend there will be many opportunities to share the PUC experience with your son or daughter. Worship will be one of our keystones as we celebrate our faith in a family vespers, student-lead Sabbath school and a church service lead by the college pastor, Ray Mitchell. There will also be a special musical program hosted by the Music Department, and the women's volleyball team, the PUC Pioneers will challenge a local team...

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The Wild Blue Yonder in Our own Backyard

By Brydon Marks on November 12, 2007

For most people, flying is something to dream about. If they want to get into the sky and soar among billowy, white clouds on a sunny, spring day, they will have to pack themselves elbow to elbow with strangers in a crowded, jumbo jet at a smoggy, big-city airport. For most people, airplanes are about transportation, not about freedom or escape. However, most people do not live with Parrott Field in their backyard or with easy access to a flight training program, as we do at Pacific Union College. This year, PUC's technology department began offering a B.S. degree in aviation. This exciting, new major is designed to prepare students for everything from piloting for major airlines or commercial cargo operations to medical evacuation and missions flying. However, there are rich resources left for those of us who just want to get off the ground. Allan Payne, the airport's director and the chief instructor in aviation, estimates that anyone can earn a pilot's license in about two quarters, English or business majors alike. Some faculty members have even begun to realize that there is no reason to let students have all the fun. Gary Gifford, associate academic dean, is currently...

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PUC Hosts The Napa Valley Golf Tournament

By Brydon Marks on November 12, 2007

On Wednesday, May 20, 120 golfers gathered at the Silverado Country Club to take part in the 6th annual Napa Valley Golf Tournament. The weather was cool and sunny-a surprisingly golf-friendly day considering this year's winter. The tournament, hosted by Pacific Union College, raised money for the college's worthy student scholarship fund, and provided an opportunity for good natured competition and a fine day on the greens. The tournament consisted of 18 holes of golf in a two-best, foursome play. Special awards were given for the longest drive and the closest to the pins on all par 3's. A 1998 Chevrolet Malibu also sat glistening on the course, the prize for a hole in-one. Alas, no miracle strokes were recorded, so no one left the course with a new car, courtesy of Epps Chevrolet Pontiac Oldsmobile Inc. in St. Helena. Of special note, the Napa Valley Service Club Championship perpetual trophy was awarded to the St. Helena Rotary team, as the top Napa Valley service club foursome. Alex Fox, assistant director of development at PUC, said that the Napa Valley Golf Tournament was, "just a good old home town kind of thing... raising money for local kids." An awards dinner...

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Sonia Barajas Breaks the Chain

By Brydon Marks on November 12, 2007

Sonia Barajas is doing something no one in her family has ever done before. She is going to college. A pre-med student, Barajas is majoring in biology at Pacific Union College, an accomplishment which has distinguished her in her family and has also earned her a $5,000 Coca-Cola First Generation Scholarship.By attending Pacific Union College, Barajas is fulfilling a life-long dream. "I wanted to attend a university since I was a little girl," she says. "I noticed that none of my family members went to a university, so I wanted to break that chain." Barajas' parents are Adventist immigrants from Mexico. She says that they have always worked very hard as farm workers, but have only received very low wages.It is for low-income Latino families like her own that Barajas is attending school.Barajas is planning to return to the Latino community with her bilingual skills and a medical degree. For her, practicing medicine is not about an income but about a ministry. She is willing to talk about the nice house and comfortable life that many of her classmates will obtain, but she carefully points out, "Giving to people is something I would like better. God has something for everybody......

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