Category Archives: Academics

Faces of PUC: Crista Peterson

Crista Peterson graduated from PUC in 1983 and five years ago decided to come back to our favorite ‘College on the Mountain’! Crista is the executive assistant for Student Life as well as the international student advisor which means she gets to work very closely with lots of current students as well as incoming students. There’s a great chance you’ll see Crista around campus so let’s get to know a little bit about her!  

What brought you to PUC? How/Why did you decide to work here? 

I arrived in this area when I was 9-years-old with my family. I attended PUC Elementary, Prep, and college. When I graduated from college, I left to pursue work in my field. I then went on to pursue a master’s degree at another university. After 20 plus years living and working in the U.S. and internationally (SE Asia),  I returned to Napa Valley to be closer to my family. Because of my international experience, I had an interest in working with international students. I have always had fond memories of my time at PUC and wanted to give back in some way.

 What is the best thing about being a part of the Pioneers family? 

It’s wonderful to connect with the students and provide some support in their life and career journey. There is so much individuality and diversity on this campus, and it’s special to be a part of this. The campus and surrounding areas are beautiful and inspiring. The spiritual component is also a huge blessing.

 Where is your favorite place to eat in the Valley and why? 

Himalayan Sherpa Kitchen in St. Helena. I’ve adopted a vegan, plant-based diet and this restaurant has some delicious cuisine options in the “plant-based” category.

Crista What is something you can do/want to do that might be surprising for people to learn? 

I have traveled extensively, but I have not visited the Bible lands and have not been on an African Safari. I would like to do this.

 What is one song you’re listening to on repeat lately? 

Lauren Daigle – “Rescue” and “How Great Thou Art”

 Who is someone you admire and why?

General Colin Powell. He was present at an international conference I attended. He has had an amazing career and is a person of high integrity. I bought one of his books and plan to read it.

 Finish this sentence: On Sunday mornings you can find me …  

Sipping ginger tea, cooking, and juicing. I like to start the day off with a substantial meal.

 

 

Sensibilities: Douglas Sandquist at the Rasmussen Art Gallery

By Becky St. Clair

In the early 90s, Douglas Sandquist attended PUC as a bio-chem. Upon being accepted into dental school after his junior year, he left PUC and headed to dental school. He went on to become a dentist back in his hometown of Las Vegas, Nevada, where today he curates the unexpected combination of his dental career and photography. 

In 2016, a photo Sandquist took in Iceland with his iPhone and shared via Instagram was requested by Apple for use in a worldwide marketing campaign. This resulted in mega exposure for this Nevadan dentist-photographer. (More on this in the Q&A—keep reading!)

Some of Sandquist’s photographic art will be displayed in an exhibit in the Rasmussen Art Gallery beginning this Saturday, Oct. 12, with his opening reception at 7 p.m. He will present an artist talk and refreshments will be served. Before you go, though, you may want to learn a bit more about the artist himself. We did, so we asked him a few prodding questions. 

Introducing: Douglas Sandquist.

Where did you grow up, and how did that environment contribute to how you view the physical world? big-image-1

I was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada. It’s right in the middle of the Southwest part of the United States. California, Utah, and Arizona, along with their beaches, deserts, and National Parks, gave me the opportunity to get out and see what was out there. I’ve never stopped exploring.

 

 

What sparked your original interest in photography?

I actually dabbled with it even as a child. It wasn’t until I wanted to get better at taking photos for my day job as a dentist that I really started getting serious about it. I wanted to somehow be able to capture what I do. Most dental photography is macro photography, but it’s also portrait photography. I originally wanted to learn how to take better clinical photos, so I delved into learning how to better use a camera, how to compose a shot, and how to work with different lighting. One thing led to another, and I started to enjoy photography outside the office just as much as in it.

What was the first camera you used to start shooting artistic/intentional photography?

I bought a Canon 10D in 2004.

What camera is your instrument of choice now?

I currently use a Canon 5D Mark IV and, of course, an iPhone. 

Where do you learn your photography skills?

I’ve never taken a formal photography class. I am mostly self-taught, but I have also participated in workshops all over the world, and have engaged in online mentorship programs for over 10 years.

Okay, let’s talk about the Apple iPhone ads. (You knew it was coming!) How did this happen?

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Crazy as it sounds, I didn’t submit my photo to Apple. In January 2016 I took a photo with my iPhone and posted it on Instagram with a few hashtags—as you do—and a few months later, I was contacted by Apple and their advertising agency, requesting the use of my photo in a campaign. I agreed, and within a matter of months, my photo—taken with an iPhone 6S—was on billboards, in magazines, and on signs around the globe.

 

 

 

Where did your photo show up, that you know of? big-image-3

That photo appeared on over 30 billboards all around the world: L.A., San Francisco, Dallas, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, Paris, India, six cities in China—including Shanghai—Korea, Thailand, Mexico, Tokyo, and Turkey, and on the back of magazines all over the world. 

 

What inspires you as a photographer?

I love challenging what I see and then attempting to capture it. It also means I get to get out there and go see the world. 

What are your favorite subjects to photograph?

I particularly enjoy capturing cold landscapes and the stars in the American Southwest. 

How do you think the desert of the American Southwest and the frozen tundra of Iceland are connected for you? What draws you to those environs to shoot? big-image-2

Both of these regions offer plenty of opportunities to ask, “How did this happen?” Whether it’s a massive arch-like Double Window in Arches National Park or the glacier ice that ends up on the black sand beaches of Iceland, there are always unique views and perspectives to capture and ponder. I also love the way the light transforms these elements. Different times of the day or year create different scenes that often catch me off-guard and illuminate my sensibilities.  

We have to ask one completely abstract question, so here goes: If the experience of taking the perfect photo had a color, what would it be? big-image

Sunset Orange 🙂 

 

There Are Some Really Great Reasons to Apply to PUC

Your senior year of high school is a busy time. Aside from classes and making memories you’re gearing up to head off to college. If you haven’t already started looking at potential schools to attend next year, now’s the time—and why not start with Pacific Union College! Here are just a few of the reasons why you should consider applying to PUC.

 

Screen Shot 2019-09-05 at 11.35.54 AMThere’s Something for Everyone

PUC offers more than 70 different degrees and programs to choose from—whatever your passion, we’ve got a program for you! Our graduates are primed for success and are working in many exciting areas, including Stanford University, Google, Buzzfeed, Apple, Lucasfilm, Airbnb, Loma Linda University, LinkedIn, and more.

 

Screen Shot 2019-09-05 at 11.36.01 AMMake Friends for a Lifetime

One of the best things about attending PUC is living in one of our seven residence halls. About 75 percent of students live on-campus, which fosters a very close-knit community atmosphere. Students live together, study together, socialize, and worship together, which gives our campus a unique sense of unity. 

 

 

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You don’t need to wait until you graduate to start helping with problems around the world. PUC students are already making a difference. With internships, missionary opportunities, service-learning projects, and on-campus ministry groups, you can be part of making change, today, in places like Fiji, Nicaragua, Brazil, and more.

 

Screen Shot 2019-09-05 at 11.36.14 AMHave a Mentor in Your Corner

With a 12:1 student-teacher ratio, your professors will know you. The one-on-one attention you receive in and out of the classroom will help make you a much more successful student. Your professors become your mentors who can help you along your journey, and ones you can still get advice from years after graduation.

 

As you’ve seen, there are many advantages to attending PUC and we would be thrilled to welcome you into the Pioneers family! The online application is quick, easy to complete, and always free. Reach out to the Admissions office with any questions you might have by calling (800) 862-7080, option 2 or emailing admissions@puc.edu. 

Don’t wait—apply to PUC now!

 

PubWorkshop 2019

By Becky St. Clair

Thirteen academies participated in this year’s publication workshop at Pacific Union College. Created to inspire and offer guidance to young publication managers and their teams, PubWorkshop has long been a popular event for many Adventist high schools in the Pacific Union. 

Attendees are editors of school yearbooks and newspapers, who bring their sponsors and teams for three days of brainstorming, learning, and peer engagement. Sessions during PubWorkshop cover topics such as headline- and caption-writing, design best practice, team-building, video editing, news writing, photojournalism, project management, leadership, yearbook storytelling, and more.img_4357

This year’s experience was another great opportunity to showcase to our academies PUC’s talented faculty in the Visual Arts, English, and Communication departments,” says Milbert Mariano, academic dean and VP for academic administration for PUC. “We were pleased to also continue to incorporate and highlight our worship and praise talent on campus.”

David Carreon, worship pastor at the PUC Church, coordinated worship and music for the attending academies.

img_4359Teachers, sponsors, and students continue to find PubWorkshop a valuable resource for improving the quality and efficiency of their teams and productions. These days, newspapers and yearbooks are more than just words and pictures printed on paper—even those produced at schools. Events such as PubWorkshop allow students and their sponsors to explore creative ideas for connecting with and engaging their fellow students and staff through their school publications.

“I liked that I got to spend time with people who have the same interests as me in design and photography,” says Sydney Chan, yearbook editor for Mountain View Academy. “It was very educational talking to others and sharing ideas. I got to make many friends and I learned that Comic Sans is not the best font to use when creating such an important publication. I hope to apply what I learned at Pub in our yearbook we are currently working on.” img_4360

Comments made on the post-event survey included appreciation for learning to work as a team, the variety of creative ideas, interesting and professional presenters, learning skills they can use even after graduation, building relationships, and more. 

“Publication Workshop never fails to be a valuable time for learning and cultivating skills that are worthwhile for the yearbook staff,” says Laura Helms, yearbook advisor for Mountain View Academy. “My students have always come away with new ideas and friends and are more cohesive because of the workshop. This experience helps us create our best publications.”

img_4361After 14 years serving as director of PubWorkshop, Mariano is stepping away from coordinating PubWorkshop after this year, choosing to focus more on his new role as academic dean and VP for academic administration, a role he assumed this summer. New director Desirae Bach, is also a new design professor in the department of visual arts at PUC.

“I’ve been incredibly blessed to have served as director and am looking forward to seeing it grow and thrive under Desirae Bach’s leadership,” says Mariano.

“We are very excited to have Desirae take on a leadership role as the director of PubWorkshop,” says Maria Rankin-Brown, associate academic VP for PUC, 3-year co-director of, and a long-time participant in PubWorkshop. “She brings a wealth of design knowledge and has new ideas that will benefit future Publication Workshops.” img_4362

Many of the schools that participate—some from as far away as southern California—attend year after year, bringing new yearbook and newspaper teams in to learn from and be inspired by professional presenters at PubWorkshop. 

This year’s keynote speaker was Andy Bishop, a 2010 PUC communication and business administration graduate and digital media specialist with nearly a decade of experience. Bishop has filled roles such as a news reporter for an NBC affiliate in Texas and a digital media correspondent for Major League Baseball. 

img_4364“This year’s Publication Workshop demonstrated the academy students’ and their sponsors’ dedication to working hard to improve their publications,” Rankin-Brown says. “The Publication Workshop presenters provided professional, high-quality presentations for the academy participants. The sponsors set high expectations and their students worked hard to meet them.”

Publication Workshop 2020 will take place on September 8-10; as always, on the PUC campus. For information on registration, lodging, fees, and any other details, bookmark publicationworkshop.squarespace.com for the latest updates and information.

“We are so pleased with the way that the PUC campus collaborated to ensure that the participants all had a successful experience,” says Rankin-Brown. “The students who participated were so engaged and enthusiastic that it was a joy to work with them. We look forward to seeing that dedication from all involved again in 2020.” 

 

It’s Time for FAFSA!

It’s October 1 and do you know what that means? If you said to yourself, “They are obviously about to talk to me about FAFSA.” you would be correct! That’s right everyone, starting today, you can file your FAFSA and have your information sent to up to 10 colleges! 

One of the most important things you can do to prepare for college is to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA is an online form you will submit each year that determines your eligibility for student financial aid. 

Be sure to file FAFSA as soon as possible since some aid is awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. To have your FAFSA information sent to PUC, include PUC’s school code—it’s 001258

FAFSA takes most people less than an hour to complete, which includes taking time to gather the necessary documents, completing and reviewing the application, and reading the important information on the “Confirmation” page you’ll receive after signing and submitting the FAFSA. You can even complete it on your phone! The U.S. Department of Education has created a mobile-friendly version on its website or it can be filled out using its myStudentAid app. Nothing should stop you from taking one hour to do this incredibly important step in the college financial aid process! 

Filing the FAFSA also potentially qualifies you for a Pell Grant, which is a subsidy from the U.S. federal government, and is something you don’t have to pay back. Amounts can change each year, but for the 2019-2020 award year, the maximum Pell Grant award is $6,195!

According to a study by NerdWallet, in 2014 U.S. high school graduates left a whopping $2.9 billion in free federal grant money on the table just by not completing the FAFSA, which made them ineligible for a Pell Grant. In our great state of California, over 100,000 seniors would have qualified for Pell Grants if they had filed their FAFSA, but as a result, they lost $396,401,205. See how critical it can be for you to take the time to do the FAFSA? 

Based on your FAFSA information, our team of financial counselors can determine how much financial aid you are eligible for and create a personalized financial aid estimate for you where you can see how much per month it would cost to attend PUC. It’s an incredibly helpful and absolutely essential thing for you to have when making a decision about where to attend college. 

What are you waiting for? Start your FAFSA now at fafsa.gov!

 

A Letter From Your SA President

Hello PUC family, my name is Megan Belz and I am lucky to be the student association president for this 2019-2020 school year. I am a senior, business management major and I am absolutely loving it. I started my freshman year at PUC as a fine art major, only really knowing one person and no real drive for what I wanted to do in the future. Even though art is a huge part of my life, it never felt like the right path for me. After months of research and career tests, I decided to try out business. I fell in love with it! My sophomore year is when I really discovered myself and where my strengths lay. I let this passion carry me all the way till now and I’m still very happy. My dream career after college is to manage my own animal shelter. Anyone who knows me knows I am a huge animal lover and an adopt don’t shop advocate. I recently concluded an internship with the Napa County Animal Shelter and I learned so much through that experience. 

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I’ve never really thought of myself as someone who was capable of being a leader. To be completely honest, I often struggle with a lot of self-doubts, as I’m sure many people do. Deciding to take on the position of the SA president is actually a really big deal for me. This school year I really want to prove to myself and to PUC that I am completely capable of just about anything I want to accomplish in life. The biggest thing I have come to realize this summer is I cannot do it on my own! My relationship with God is essential to any steps I take in life and it is through Him I have the strength and the privilege to do so. 

One lesson which really stood out to me is the importance of confidence in Christ. Psalms 27:3 says though an army DEPLOYS against me, my heart will not be afraid. Though a war BREAKS OUT against me, I will still be confident. Reading this really tugged at my heart because David is talking in the present tense. He is not reciting the events that have happened but the events in his life that are happening. It is easy to be courageous and confident over a past situation, but to be brave when you know armies are being deployed against you now, is far more difficult. This is the way I want to approach this school year. I want to have confidence in the Lord that is so great, in the midst of any challenge, big or small, I remain brave. 

2C198FC9-1DCE-494D-B832-514FDE49967EThis school year is going to be so wonderful I can hardly wait!  I am so lucky to have an amazing group of people who make up my SA team. They are coming at you, PUC fam, with exciting events, crazy videos, fun posters, God-centered worship, senate inspired changes, and much more. We are here for the students and we want to give you all the best year possible. I want to encourage anyone who has any suggestions for SA to come to us and talk, we want you to be involved this year. We want to create an atmosphere that can stimulate the year you visualize. I cannot wait to get to know you all better and become the close-knit family I know we can be, because growing close to one another is a perfect example of what God’s love is about. 

 

Where Passion and Profession Unite

Every Pioneer has a unique story. Each one is different, but they all started at the same place. Here! An education at PUC prepares students for more than just a career. Graduates are equipped with the practical knowledge and the spiritual nurturing to succeed and serve and are ready for whatever the future brings. 

PUC is a place where passion and profession unite. Our grads know the combination of a beautiful and perfectly located setting; dedicated professors; and a hands-on approach to Adventist education, all play a part in starting your future. At PUC, you find more than just a major—you find your calling.

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Cameron combined his love of surfing with graphic design and is thriving as a senior designer at RipCurl.

“PUC gave me a lot of opportunities to work one-on-one with my professors. Under their guidance, the skills and techniques I developed and perfected helped me land my dream job at Rip Curl.” Cameron Mitchell, Senior graphic designer, Rip Curl

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As an animal lover, Mindy dreamed of doing more. Now she’s a vet performing surgeries to help save the lives of horses.

“Reflecting on my undergraduate education at Pacific Union College, I can’t imagine better preparation for my career as a veterinarian. The biology program gave me the foundation needed to transition into veterinary course work with ease. My professors were not only wonderful instructors but ensured my academic success through personal mentorship and course flexibility. The smaller class sizes afforded many opportunities for leadership and teaching roles that greatly enhanced my application in a highly competitive pool. PUC influenced my transition from student to educated professional equipped to face the challenges and triumphs of my chosen career as an equine veterinarian.” Mindy C. Smith, DVM, cVMA, Associate Veterinarian, Equine Medicine

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Alex is a self-proclaimed “people person” with the singular focus to one day make a positive impact. Following her passion for education and service drove her to a career in public health. 

“PUC was not only where I received an education, but also where I received the opportunity to be an enrollment counselor. That experience has trained me to be successful in my field when it comes to working with the community in countless ways.” Alex Dunbar, community education specialist

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Stefaan combined his love of the outdoors, sports and photography into a double degree in photography and business here at Pacific Union College!

“I’ve always been an athlete and I’ve always loved photography. In my junior year, I studied abroad in Spain and I spent a lot of time traveling and finding what my passions were and I came away from that year seeing photography as a very viable career for me.” Stefaan Dick, adventure photographer

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Julie found her path around the world through global service. 

“I never imagined that my degrees in English and psychology would lead me to a job in missions that takes me around the globe. Yet my professors at PUC celebrated the diversity of people, culture, and ideas. They taught me to look beyond the surface and dig deeper for new perspectives. They showed me how compassion and dialogue can build community, wherever you are. By teaching me how to think, PUC prepared me for the world.” Julie Lee, Vice president of marketing, Maranatha Volunteers International

If you’re interested in joining our amazing alums and becoming part of the Pioneers family, apply today!