Seeing the East Coast with the PUC Department of History

By Marielle Gutierrez

As a recently graduated history major from Pacific Union College, I can say I spent a lot of time in Irwin Hall. As a student, I sat through many interesting class periods where professors not only gave thought-provoking lectures, but also encouraged students to use critical thinking and problem solving skills. Learning history in a classroom setting is great, but it is even better when you are able to visit the many different places you read about in an assigned reading, or researched for your next paper. Visiting historical locations makes the past more real and accessible. Thankfully, the department of history at PUC offers students the chance to experience history through travel.

This past summer the history tour went to the East Coast. All who participated on the tour had the opportunity to visit Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C. Each location showcased an obvious mix between the past and present. Despite this common factor, each location managed to offer something unique to me. Boston provided a clear visual of our nation’s beginnings with all of its historical sites. New York offered us the opportunity to see the roots of our country’s diversity, while Philadelphia proudly displayed themes of our country’s foundational beliefs—liberty and freedom. Last but not least, Washington, D.C., was a memorial of thanks to the many brave people who sacrificed everything so their country could flourish.

I enjoyed the history tour so much because I was able to fulfill my dream of visiting these famous cities that played an important role in founding the United States. I also enjoyed the tour because I was able to form friendships with other PUC students who I previously never had the chance to meet, or initially did not know very well. By the end of the tour numerous inside jokes were formed during evening homework sessions and various means of keeping in contact were created. They honestly became family.

I will always remember this trip as one of my best college memories, and for that, I am so thankful for the PUC department of history because they provided me with this once-in-a-lifetime experience. If you ever have the opportunity go on this tour; take it! You will not regret it.

#FacultyFriday: Meet James Cephas

Welcome to our latest installment of #FacultyFriday, where we feature a different faculty member each week.

Please give a warm welcome to Dr. James Cephas to our department of psychology. Dr. Cephas joins the ranks of academia after serving successfully for several years as a psychologist with the California state prison system. His training and real-world experience in the area of counseling and clinical psychology will bring strength to this dimension of the psychology curriculum. Dr. Cephas’s counseling and advocacy experience includes children, adolescents, and adults. He is also very interested in the multicultural aspects of social and psychological development, and in issues of social justice.

Name: Dr. James Cephas
Title: Clinical psychology professor
Email: jcephas@puc.edu
Faculty since: July 1, 2017

Classes taught at PUC: General Psychology, Psychology of Personality, American Social Problems, Psychological Testing

Education: Psy.D. with an emphasis in multicultural community, from Alliant International University, 2012; M.A. in clinical psychology, from Alliant International University, 2010; B.A. in human services, from California State University, Fullerton, 2003

What made you decide to be a teacher?
Honestly, my daughter. She asked me to apply. I have a diverse background and working in the field allows me to share my knowledge and experience while leading and broadening my experience.

What are some of your hobbies?
Hiking, camping, fishing, snorkeling, music (praise and worship), art, therapy

What is something people might be surprised to know about you?
I was born in the first state of the United States. (Figure that one out!)

What are you looking forward to the most about teaching at PUC?
After the first week of classes? A vacation! Lol. Becoming a part of the family. Growing into a better professor.

So far, what’s been your favorite thing about PUC?
An amazing group of young people, the beauty of the surroundings, the awesome administration team that has been eager to assist, and the amazing staff and faculty members.

Tips for Managing Stress in College

By Carissa Paw

All too often, students find themselves in stressful situations. Whether it’s from overloading on credits, taking on too many jobs at once, or having multiple deadlines to meet in one week, college can be stressful. These times are when it’s most important to remember putting too much stress on yourself isn’t beneficial to your studies. If you have found yourself in these types of situations, here are some tips to prevent and deal with stress.

Utilize the syllabus
From week one, check the syllabus given to you on the first day of class and write down important dates, such as tests and quizzes. By checking your syllabus on a weekly basis, you can to look at what’s due ahead of time and won’t be surprised by that one report worth 15 percent of your grade.

Prioritize your week
If you know you have two tests, three quizzes, and a reading report due in one week, make sure to divide the work. Try to study ahead of time instead of cramming the night before. As arduous as it sounds, try to get bigger projects done as soon as you can—trust me, you’ll thank yourself later. This will eliminate stress during the week, allowing yourself those additional blissful hours of sleep.

Take a minute to breathe
When you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, take a minute to sit back and breathe. Use those sixty seconds to focus on breathing and not on the assignment due on Canvas at 11:59 p.m. After a minute, write out all the things you need to do. List them in the order they’re due and prioritize the things on top of the list first.

Find sources of help
As a class progresses, the material slowly builds upon the prior week. If you realize the material is too much to manage, don’t be afraid to talk to the professor. As a senior here at PUC, I’ve found the professors to be extremely helpful. Each professor is more than willing to meet with you and ensure you understand the material.

Take a break
Honestly, this step may seem ludicrous when facing multiple deadlines, but this tip has been the most beneficial to me. Removing yourself from a stressful situation for 5-10 minutes (or however long you prefer) can be extremely helpful in eliminating stress. You can take this break to listen to music, watch a YouTube video, or catch up on social media. By allowing yourself time to not be engrossed in studies, you can alleviate stress and improve your focus when going back to a certain task.

#FacultyFriday: Meet Jason St. Clair

Here’s the latest installment of #FacultyFriday, where we feature a different faculty member each week.

Name: Jason St. Clair
Title: Technical services librarian
LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jason-st-clair-6542137b/  
Email: jstclair@puc.edu  
Faculty since: July 1, 2017

This year we welcome Jason St. Clair to PUC, where he will be working as the new technical services librarian in the Nelson Memorial Library. He joins us most recently from Andrews University, where he spent the past five years serving as the interlibrary loan assistant and more recently, the head of patron services and interlibrary loan manager. Previously, St. Clair served as the access services assistant and media center technician at the Peterson Memorial Library at Walla Walla University.

Education: M.S. in library & information science, from Drexel University, 2008; B.A. in English, minor in History, from Walla Walla University, 2005

Professional activities“Adulting in the Library: Experiences of Millennials as Library Staff” presentation at 37th Conference of the Association of Seventh-day Adventist Librarians, June 25-29, 2017.

What made you decide to be a librarian?
I’m a very curious person and I love being surrounded by so much information and being able to explore different topics on a whim or learning something new as I assist a student in their research.

What are some of your hobbies?
Reading, hiking, mountain biking, Legos, family

What’s something people might be surprised to know about you?
I can name all of the countries of the world.

What are you looking forward to the most about being at PUC?
The close-knit feeling of the campus community.

So far, what’s been your favorite thing about PUC?
Being surrounded by trees and mountains and nature.

My Summer Working in PUC’s Nelson Memorial Library Archives

By Sierra McMillan

One dilemma for many college students is where they will work over the summer. I am a senior English major, so I wanted to have some sort of job that would be applicable to my future career plans. I asked Katy Van Arsdale, the special collections librarian here at PUC, if she needed help in the archives during the summer months and lucky for me, she did.

My main project over the duration of the summer was cleaning, digitizing, and curating an exhibit of early 20th century PUC magic lantern slides. Magic lantern slides were used to display photographs and other images from the 18th-mid-20th centuries. The PUC slides I worked with displayed a wide range of images from early PUC history—like groups of students, classroom scenes, and views of campus. At the beginning of the summer, Katy gave me a large box of these lantern slides in disintegrating wooden boxes, and it was my job to clean them and transfer the slides to proper archival storage. It took quite a bit of time to go through every slide; each which needed the dirt brushed off, excess grime cleaned with deionized water, and then they were placed in individual paper enclosures.

PUC students visit Bodega Bay sand dunes as part of Dr. Clark’s Field Nature School, summer 1934.

The next step in the process was to digitize the collection. Lantern slides are difficult to scan; the different portions—the transparent interior image and the exterior slide frame—have to be scanned separately in order for both to be viewable. On the scanned images, I used Photoshop to make both portions of the digitized version of the slides simultaneously viewable. In total, I cleaned and digitized around 450 slides. After all of the slides were scanned, I curated a small exhibit of these lantern slides for display in the library. Soon the entire digitized collection will be viewable on the Adventist Digital Library.

Landscaping and pools between Clark Hall and Irwin Hall, where the greenhouse now stands. Probably photographed in the 1930s.

Working with this collection of lantern slides and in the library archives in general over the summer was such a great experience. It gave me a taste of the type of work that archivists do and information about historical artifacts I wouldn’t have learned about in such a hands-on manner otherwise. Research for my senior thesis project has lead me to look into some online archive collections and it’s fascinating to know how these collections might have been produced and that I had a hand in putting together a similar collection for the PUC archive.

PUC student poses at the base of the Graf Hall steps, probably in the 1930s.

Five Academic Departments at PUC You Should Know

There are over 70 different majors at PUC, which offers students plenty of options to choose from. Some of our more popular and unique departments include nursing & health sciences, biology, visual arts, aviation and education, which is a nice mix making PUC a true liberal arts college. Read on for a few fast facts about these departments!

Nursing & Health Sciences

The department of nursing and health sciences is home to the emergency services program, as well as our AS and BSN nursing degrees, which are some of the most popular at PUC.

  • We talked with PUC’s pre-nursing advisor to cover some frequently asked questions about the program. Curious if a BSN is necessary in today’s workforce? Give this blog post a read.
  • PUC offers a two year degree in health sciences for students planning on continuing on to Loma Linda University for programs such as pre-clinical laboratory science, pre-dental hygiene, pre-radiation science, and several others.

Biology

Interested in gaining some real world research experience? Look no further than the department of biology, where students conduct experiments for research projects and internships on an almost daily basis. Browse through these blog posts about student research opportunities at PUC.

  • PUC biology students have uniquely high acceptance rates to top-notch medical and dental schools like Loma Linda University.
  • There’s more than one way and one place to learn. The department teaches classes on the Mendocino Coast at the college’s Albion Retreat & Learning Center, and students have traveled as far away as Brazil for tropical biology courses.

Visual Arts

For a behind the scenes look at one of PUC’s most exciting departments, check out the department of visual arts’ Instagram.

  • PUC film students have completed internships at DreamWorks Animation, Sofia and Francis Ford Coppola’s American Zoetrope film studio, Pixar and HBO.
  • With San Francisco just an hour a 20 minutes away, visual arts students often visit museums in the city, including the SF Museum of Modern Art, the de Young Museum, & the Palace of Legion of Honor.

Aviation

The sky’s the limit in PUC’s department of aviation!

  • PUC is one of only two liberal arts colleges in California to offer a degree in aviation.
  • There are many different career paths aviation students can pursue, including aerial photography, airline pilot, air traffic controller, fire fighting, and more. Read one PUC graduate’s story of how an aviation degree took him to new heights in this blog post.

Education

PUC’s $3,000 renewable Adventist Mission Scholarship is available to students actively pursuing a teaching credential for elementary or secondary education.

  • The department of education assists graduates with job placement through events like the Education Days banquet and interviews, where prospective employers from the local conference and throughout the Pacific Union meet with students.
  • Learn how you can tailor an education degree to fit your future career aspirations by reading about this recent graduate’s experience in this blog post.

For more information about all of PUC’s degree programs and how they can help you reach your educational and professional goals, we invite you to talk with an enrollment counselor in the enrollment services office. Email enroll@puc.edu or call (800) 862-7080, option 2 today.