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Pacific Union College Announces Robert Cushman as 23rd President

By Staff Writer on May 11, 2017

On May 11, 2017, the Pacific Union College Board of Trustees announced Dr. Robert A. Cushman Jr. has been selected as the new president of Pacific Union College. Cushman currently serves as the vice president for academic administration for Walla Walla University in Walla Walla, Wash., and has spent the last 26 years in Adventist education serving in various capacities. He will begin his role as president July 1, in preparation for the new academic year, and will be the college’s twenty-third president in its 135-year history. Cushman received his Ph.D. in geology from the Colorado School of Mines, his master’s degree in geology at Loma Linda University, and his bachelor’s degree in biology at Walla Walla College (now University). After spending five years as a geologist and paleontologist, Cushman felt God’s calling to educate young minds. In the 12 years he taught at Loma Linda University, he served as assistant professor, associate department chair, and the department chair of the department of earth and biological sciences, where he taught graduate level courses, conducted research in Western Colorado and Wyoming, and advised graduate student research. Additionally, under his administrative duties, he oversaw the department’s budget and coordinated the undergraduate geology...
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PUC Men’s Basketball Makes First Appearance at NAIA National Tournament

By Staff Writer on March 27, 2017

On Wednesday, March 8, the eighth-seeded Pacific Union College Pioneers men’s basketball team took on the first-seeded Cornerstone University Golden Eagles in the opening round of the 26th annual NAIA Division II Men’s Basketball National Championship at the College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout, Mo. After a dominating first half, PUC’s run came to an abrupt halt when Cornerstone took control over the final 20 minutes to pull out an 89-83 win. Despite their heartbreaking lost, the Pioneers raised eyebrows and turned heads at the national level with a stellar performance for their first appearance in the NAIA national tournament. The Pioneers, who had won their last eight games—the last three by a combined total of six points that included two buzzer-beaters—came out hitting on all cylinders, shooting almost 64 percent in the opening half, including 10 of 17 from the 3-point line. Their largest lead came with just under a minute to play in the first half on the third triple from junior Ben Jazuk to go up 55-29, but the Golden Eagles picked up the defensive pressure and chipped away at the 25-point halftime deficit and found a way to advance into the second round. With the...
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Pioneers Men’s Basketball Named California Pacific Conference Champions

By Staff Writer on March 1, 2017

Despite all odds, the PUC Pioneers men's basketball team took home the California Pacific Conference Championship title, defeating the five-year defending champions Cal Maritime, 71-70, Tuesday evening, Feb. 28. The Pioneers began their championship debut struggling to find their rhythm. At halftime, they were trailing the Keelhaulers by 10 points. Once again, their defensive effort swung the momentum of the game their way, as they went on a 10-0 run to open the second half. The crowd would find no relief in their school's lead, as both teams tied six times throughout the second half. It came down to the last possession, just as it did on Feb. 18 when PUC Pioneer Jayson Marquez, a junior from Harlem, N.Y., hit a three-pointer with less than a second remaining to beat CSUM by one in the regular season finale. With less than a second left in regulation, PUC Pioneer Rae Hubbard, a junior from Fairfield, Calif., drained a shot to secure the 71-70 win and the California Pacific Conference Championship title. “It was the greatest basketball game I’ve ever seen live. I’m so proud of the team, they played their hearts out and really deserved this win. It was great to...
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Pioneers Men’s Basketball Continue Historic Season with Cal Pac Semifinal Win

By Staff Writer on February 27, 2017

The Pioneers men's basketball team punched their ticket to the California Pacific Conference championship game with their semifinal win over Benedictine-Mesa, 78-75, Sunday evening, February 26. The Pioneers will play Cal Maritime on Tuesday, February 28, in the finals in Vallejo, Calif. The Pioneers and Benedictine opened the game with a consistent exchange of points; however, the Pioneers went on a 17-5 run to pull ahead 33-15 with just over four minutes left in the opening half. Going into the locker room at halftime, the Pioneers had a comfortable 18-point lead over the Redhawks. With no major momentum changes until two minutes into the second half, the Redhakws went on a 7-0 run, cutting their deficit to 67-59. The Redhawks continued to chip away at the Pioneers lead and with less than two minute on the clock, found themselves down by only four points. Chad Young, a senior from Carson, Calif., sunk two free throws to give the Pioneers a slim 78-72 lead. Despite a PUC turnover, the Redhawk final shot attempts missed, securing a historic win for the Pioneers. The Pioneers were led by Cal Pac's Player of the Week Kwuan Guerrero, a senior from Los Angeles, Calif., who...
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Pacific Union College Names New Vice President for Financial Administration

By Staff Writer on January 9, 2017

In a special meeting held January 4, 2017, the Pacific Union College Board of Trustees confirmed Brandon C. Parker as the college’s new vice president for financial administration. Parker, an alumnus of PUC, assumes his new role January 9. A former vice president and chief financial officer for St. Helena Hospital, Napa Valley, Parker is a certified public accountant with over 20 years of experience in finance and operations in healthcare, secondary education, and in the private sector. Earlier leadership appointments have included Mendocino regional vice president and chief financial officer at Adventist Health, vice president and chief financial officer at Ukiah Valley Medical Center, finance manager for Glendale Adventist Medical Center, and vice principal of operations and chief financial officer for Monterey Bay Academy. “I am delighted that Mr. Parker is willing to join PUC’s administrative team,” said PUC president Eric Anderson. “Both he and I have a sense of God’s leading in this appointment.” In his new role, Parker will be responsible for leadership and strategic direction of the division of finance and administration. This includes supervising the offices of Human Resources and Payroll, Employee Housing, Budgets, Risk Management, Student Financial Services, Accounting, Facilities Management, Information Technology Systems...
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Eric Anderson Elected President of Pacific Union College

By Staff Writer on December 14, 2016

During a special session on December 13, 2016, the Pacific Union College Board of Trustees elected a new president, Eric Anderson, a senior faculty member, to serve until June 30, 2017. Anderson’s six-month appointment begins January 9, 2017. “I am grateful to Dr. Anderson for agreeing to take on this important leadership role,” says Board Chairman Bradford Newton. “He has the experience, vision, and commitment to lead PUC during the upcoming search committee process.” According to Newton, Anderson will be asked to help in the process of finding a long-term president for the 134-year old liberal arts college. With the administrative team, he will also be expected to reshape the college budget. Currently the Walter C. Utt Professor of History at PUC, previously Anderson was president of Southwestern Adventist University in Keene, Texas, from 2005 to 2014, where he served one of the longer presidential tenures in the university’s history. Dr. Amy Rosenthal, academic dean at Southwestern, says, “It was a privilege to begin my administrative career under Dr. Anderson's leadership at Southwestern Adventist University, where he combined an expectation of academic excellence with a clear vision for the future of Adventist education.” Rosenthal also taught at PUC in the...
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Pacific Union College President Announces Plans to Complete Her Presidency

By Staff Writer on December 6, 2016

After seven and a half years serving as President of Pacific Union College, President Heather J. Knight, Ph.D., has shared her plans to complete her presidency at PUC effective January 8, 2017. “It is always difficult to decide the right time to complete one’s presidency, but after considerable thought and prayer, I have notified PUC Board Chairperson Dr. Bradford Newton that I will complete my presidency within the next month in order to allow PUC adequate time to prepare for new presidential leadership for the next academic year. It has been a special privilege and pleasure to serve Pacific Union College, and I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to have worked with PUC’s wonderful learning community of faculty, staff, and students and to positively impact this venerable institution over the past several years. My family and I wish PUC only the very best going forward.” Knight became the College’s 21st president in September of 2009 when she was tasked with turning the institution around after several years of enrollment decreases and financial challenges. Under her leadership, Pacific Union College experienced significant growth and had its highest enrollment in 24 years of 1678 students in Fall 2013 and also its...
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This Weekend at Pacific Union College

By Staff Writer on October 11, 2016

This coming weekend is full of plenty exciting events. If you are on campus or in the area, we invite you to attend the following events.PUC Volleyball GamePUC Pioneers vs. La Sierra University Golden EaglesFriday, October 14, 2016 2:30 p.m., Pacific AuditoriumSupport your Lady Pioneers as they engage in some friendly competition with the La Sierra University Golden Eagles.Fall Revival VespersPastor Michael B. Kelly IIFriday, October 14, 20168 p.m., PUC Church SanctuaryExhibition: Just Travlin’Mira WhiteSaturday, October 15, 20167 p.m., Rasmussen Art GalleryAn extraordinarily diversified and skillful artist, Mira works and teaches in several media—oils, acrylics, pastels, watercolor, and graphics. Her work demonstrates both her sensitivity to nature and a deep felt affinity for color in both mood and expression. She exhibits widely in the Bay Area and is represented in collections both in the United States and in Europe.Reception held until 9 p.m.; exhibit runs through November 5.PUC Volleyball GamePUC Pioneers vs. Providence Christian College Sea BeggarsSaturday, October 15, 2016 8 p.m., Pacific AuditoriumCome cheer on the Lady Pioneers as they play their 19th game of the season. Only five more matches remain until the Cal Pac semifinals.2016 Pioneers Invitational Academy Volleyball Tournament Championship MatchTBDSaturday, October 15, 2016 10 p.m.,...
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PUC and Land Trust of Napa County Working Together to Protect Angwin Forestland

By Staff Writer on September 9, 2016

Pacific Union College and the Land Trust of Napa County have announced a joint effort to permanently protect, preserve, and manage 856 acres of forestland in Angwin, adjacent to the college’s campus. This forest is part of a larger ownership of land in the Angwin area held by PUC for over 100 years as an asset for its educational mission and is one of the most significant forests in Napa County. The Land Trust is working to raise the estimated $9 million needed to purchase a conservation easement under the Forest Legacy Program administered by California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire), which would preserve and protect 40 percent of the college’s land in Angwin and the majority of the college’s forest land, ensuring ongoing sustainable management of the forest into the future. The partnership is pleased to announce over $6.3 million has already been raised, in large part due to a $2.85 million grant from the State of California’s new Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund. PUC President Dr. Heather J. Knight said, “Our ultimate objective is that the PUC forest will be protected and preserved permanently and operated for the benefit of the college, its students, and the...
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PUC Collaborates with King’s College London to Authenticate ‘Bounty’ Mutineer Hair

By Staff Writer on August 24, 2016

Ten pigtails of hair thought to be from seven mutineers of “Mutiny on the Bounty” fame and three of their female Polynesian companions will be analyzed in a collaboration between the Pitcairn Islands Study Center at Pacific Union College and the forensic DNA group at King’s College London, one of the world’s leading research and teaching universities. The Pitcairn Islands Study Center (PISC) holds the world’s largest collection of information about the 1789 mutiny on the British ship H.M.S. Bounty and its aftermath. Strands from the pigtails, currently on display at the PISC, have been sent to King’s College London for testing. As the pigtails purportedly date back to the pre-1800s, the King’s team will first attempt to extract DNA from the historical hair samples after cleaning the outside, and then digesting the hair matrix using a chemical process. Nuclear DNA is not found in hair shafts, only the roots which are not available here; however, mitochondrial DNA may be present. If sufficient mitochondrial DNA can be collected, the first step will be to investigate the ancestral origins of the owners of the pigtails. Herbert Ford, director of the Center, says, “If the tests and genealogical studies of this hair...
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