Search - Lainey S. Cronk


President Speaks on the Adventist Advantage

By Lainey S. Cronk on October 5, 2009

In the second all-school colloquy of the year, new Pacific Union College president Heather Knight spoke on the topic of "Integrating Faith and Learning: A Higher Education Imperative." The theme of integrating faith and learning is one that will carry through the year for the weekly colloquies, and Knight addressed the shift, beginning in 2005, that has been pushing higher education to look at this area once again. "2005 was indeed a watershed year in terms of a renewed interest in religion and spirituality in higher education," she told the gathered campus, citing many books, projects and studies addressing students' quest for meaning and purpose, religious literacy, ground rules for civic discourse on matters of religion, and how higher education should respond. After many years of modernization, secularization, emphasis on scientific inquiry and technical approaches, followed by a postmodern trend to "dismantle the values that sustain religious belief," Knight explains that higher education is finally "coming around to affirming its historic roots." But, she asked, what does this mean for PUC? "I believe that this new interest and call to action in regard to the integration of faith and learning provides us with multiple opportunities to showcase what we have...
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PUC To Celebrate 100 Years in Angwin

By Lainey S. Cronk on September 1, 2009

Pacific Union College is celebrating its 100th anniversary in Angwin as a campus and church. The community and PUC alumni and friends are invited to a celebration weekend starting on Friday night, October 2, 2009.Jonathan Henderson, PUC alumnus and pastor of the Grand Avenue Adventist Church in Oakland, will be the special guest speaker forFriday vespers, held in the PUC Sanctuary at 8 p.m.On Sabbath, pastor and professor Lou Venden will speak for the 100th anniversary church service at 10 a.m. at the PUC Church. Venden is a professor emeritus of religion at Loma Linda University, and he was the pastor of the PUC church for several years as well as PUC's religion department chair. The service will be followed by a potluck,historical campus tour, and hike to Window Tree Valley.The evening activities will also include an Evensong program at 6 p.m., an art show opening reception at 7 p.m., and a music concert at8 p.m.For more information about the day's events, call (707) 965-6303. Celebration Schedule TimeEventOctober 2, 20098:00 p.m. Vespers worship with Jonathan HendersonPUC Church SanctuaryOctober 3, 200910:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Centennial WorshipPUC Church Sanctuary11:30 a.m. - noonFellowship Church PatioNoon-1:30 p.m.Potluck (bring entree, side, or dessert)Paulin Hall...
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PUC Marks a #1 on "Best Colleges" Listing

By Lainey S. Cronk on August 24, 2009

For 16 years now, Pacific Union College has been named among the best educational institutions in the country by U.S. News & World Report. In the 2010 "America's Best Colleges" issue, released online on August 20, PUC ranked number one in the baccalaureate colleges (West) region for racial diversity (not including international students). Other significant rankings included number two for most international students and number four for freshmen retention rates. In the overall rankings by region, PUC placed number 11. "Here at PUC we have a proud tradition of strong academics; this consistent achievement is recognized by U.S. News, and we're always happy to see it," said Nancy Lecourt, academic dean of PUC. "We are also very pleased to be ranked highly for diversity and international students, since that's part of what makes PUC a rich environment for learning and growth." One of the most well-known and widely referenced sources of college rankings, U.S. News releases "Best Colleges" material in August of each year. The book will be available in October. Data is collected from more than 1,400 colleges for each year's rankings. Racial diversity rankings are provided based on total proportion of minority students. International students are measured in...
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Forty Days of Prayer

By Lainey S. Cronk on August 24, 2009

For 40 days beginning August 18 and ending September 26, the PUC community is focusing their collective prayers on special needs that impact the church and college. They call it "40 Days of Prayer," and the goal is to communally turn to God to seek His wisdom and ask His blessing for the community. The PUC church and campus asked sister churches from Northern, Central, Nevada-Utah, Arizona, and Hawaii to join in the 40 Days of Prayer. As Adventism faces changes and constituents are challenged to see the big picture of their union and conference functions, and as PUC faces a historical year and changes in economics and leadership, it seemed like a good time to unite in specific prayer for this community. "This fall we are celebrating one hundred years in Angwin, as well as the arrival of our 21st president, Dr. Heather Knight," says academic dean Nancy Lecourt. "With enrollment numbers looking strong, we are hopeful about the future; our prayers should be both petition and thanksgiving. " PUC Church senior pastor Tim Mitchell adds that praying together can help shape our focus. "We want people to think about prayer and the movement of God among us, rather...
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Students Pursue Summer Studies at PUC

By Lainey S. Cronk on June 22, 2009

Summer has begun at Pacific Union College, and the campus during the vacation season has changed dramatically from the noise and activity of the main school year. The mountainside is hushed by the exodus of most students from campus, and it's a rare spectacle even to see two or more of them together in one place. But students are still here, and summer classes are in session. Despite the season, all across campus lectures are being taught, discussions are being engaged in, and homework is being assigned. And like the atmosphere around campus, summer session can be very different than the school year proper. Some teachers give their students a chance to relax a little during the summer session. "During the summer, I take a bit more casual approach in order to give students enough time to complete the readings and write the research paper," says history professor Amy Rosenthal. She is currently teaching an upper-division seminar on social deviancy in Victorian England, and finds that the summer session offers both challenges and opportunities in the class. "One of the biggest challenges to teaching a course like this in the summer is the short time frame. I have to choose...
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Class of 2009 Earns 294 Degrees

By Lainey S. Cronk on June 15, 2009

The 285 graduates of Pacific Union College's Class of 2009 marched the final leg of their undergraduate career on Sunday, June 14, in Commencement Grove. The president and academic dean gave 294 degrees (with 84 academic distinctions or honors), as well as granting two honorary doctorates and honoring aviation program director William Price and business department chair Richard Voth as Professors Emeriti. Various programs, dedications, and meet-and-greets take place during the entirety of Graduation Weekend, but the focal point of the affair is Sunday morning in the wooded area known as Commencement Grove, at the top of the hill. Family members arrived not long after a chilly dawn to save the best seats. As graduates began to gather near McReynolds Hall to line up, the most common activities were the adjusting of hats and the snapping of photos, while questions included "Where do the faculty line up?" "Do you sell hot chocolate?" "Where are the leis being sold?" and "Honey, where's your camera?" Although graduation is a time of some pomp and seriousness, students always make it a personally meaningful event. "Not For Sale" lettered on one cap celebrated the cause that students raised $10,000 for two years ago. Pink...
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2009 Health Fair Brings 35 Organizations

By Lainey S. Cronk on May 21, 2009

The 2009 health fair at PUC, titled "For the Health of It," sported outdoor and indoor booths and a hubbub of students and community members enjoying displays from 35 health-related programs and organizations. PUC's Health Services department is making this type of hands-on, community integrated health fair a college tradition, and it's very successful with visitors and vendors alike. St. Helena Hospital offered a "Test Your Food IQ" game including questions (and displays) like "What is a serving size?" and "Can you guess which drink has the most caffeine?" St. Helena chiropractor Michael Cleaver showed a model of a spine to a student and talking about a fall the student had taken on his back. Two representatives from Napa Valley Aromatherapy were back again this year, enjoying the lunches PUC provided for the representatives and talking about how great it was to be here. One offered a taste of a sweet, light drink made with water infused with oranges, strawberries, and mint from her garden. "We're trying to tell the kids they shouldn't be drinking all this chemical stuff," she said. "It's important to give them the basics." She added, "It's fun to watch the kids' reactions!" Massage therapist Carrie...
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Announcing the 2009 One-Act Festival

By Lainey S. Cronk on May 12, 2009

The Dramatic Arts Society at Pacific Union College presents their 2009 one-act festival, titled "All That Glitters Is Not Gold: A One-Act Festival on the surprises in life." The One-Act Festival started last year with "Love: is a Four-letter Word." The show featured seven one-acts performed for six nights, and explored the different facets of love. The 2009 show features eight one-act plays performed by 17 actors under four different directors. The One-Act Festival plays on May 23 (Saturday), 24 (Sunday), 27 (Wednesday), 28 (Thursday), 30 (Saturday) and 31 (Sunday). All shows are at 7 p.m. and are held in the Alice Holst Theater in Stauffer Hall on the PUC campus in Angwin. Admission cost is $5 for students and $7 for everyone else, and tickets are available at the door 15 minutes before each show....
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Sabbath Lunch at "Home"

By Lainey S. Cronk on May 7, 2009

When I walked into Norm and Carolyn Low's St. Helena house late on Sabbath afternoon, they were looking a little stunned. I knew it had been a Home Lunch day - when church members invite college students home for a family-style meal - and the Lows often serve up to 30 students at their house. The day had been idyllic, so students could eat out on the deck; but I could see that something else must've happened. "You won't believe it," said Norm. "Oh, my, goodness!" exclaimed Carolyn. Norm finally explained: "We had 70 kids." The Lows live in Modesto but make St. Helena their weekend home, and they are regular attendees of the Pacific Union College Church. Through Jessica Shine, then pastor of worship and outreach, the Lows got connected with a program called "Home Lunches" and joined on as hosts - though it was a stretch of faith (and personality) to do so. Before too long, they were helping Shine lead the program; and when Shine took a call to pastor in another church, they were left at the helm. Home Lunches began about three years ago when the PUC Church staff was talking about how to get...
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Green Week 2009: The Ecology of Hope

By Lainey S. Cronk on April 30, 2009

Spreading bark in the park and learning about nature deficiency were highlights of Pacific Union College's second annual Green Week, celebrated on and following Earth Day in April. The week was also the keystone event of a year-long emphasis on the campus to "get out into nature, get your hands dirty," as vice president for student services Lisa Bissell Paulson explains. Ten new trees was one success of the week, and a product of the Friday afternoon service project in the town of St. Helena. About 50 students, faculty and staff headed down to Crane Park, where they placed new bark around all of the playground equipment, washed all of the equipment, and planted the trees. Doug Wilson, student activities director and coordinator of the event, was thrilled with how the project turned out. " It was a great turnout and great event," he said. "The St. Helena people were amazed and excited by our help." The college also brought Cheryl Charles, president of the Children & Nature Network, to present twice for Green Week. At an evening lecture on April 22, Charles presented "The Ecology of Hope: Building a Movement to Reconnect Children and Nature." She spoke on why...
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