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.

A Little Kindness Goes a Long Way

Sometimes you never know the impact a simple act of kindness can have! For JoAnn Bowen, who works as the executive assistant to the president’s office at PUC, helping a stranger one afternoon resulted in a $1,000 donation to the college. We asked her to share about her experience, and we hope her story is a wonderful reminder that you never know how much your actions can mean to others.

A year ago, a man who I later learned to be John O. Pohlmann was biking and had a breakdown–I was on my lunch break coming up the hill to Angwin from Pope Valley. I just happened to have my bike rack on my vehicle and I just happened to go home during lunch to check on my dog! I usually don’t do this since it’s far. So, I drove John directly to Rico Mundy’s (another PUC employee) house who, as an avid biker, was able to repair his bike gear and send John on his way back to Bothe Park, where he camps every year along with his wife, Lyn.

On Tuesday last week, in walks John and Lyn with a thousand dollar check to PUC in honor of me! He said they just wanted to show their appreciation for the goodwill and helpfulness you can still find in the world today.

John is a retired adjunct history professor; he spent 53 years working in the California State Colleges through his career. The last place he worked was California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, Calif. His lovely wife is a retired piano teacher.

We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to the Pohlmanns for their generosity to PUC.

Looking for inspiration for how you can spread everyday kindness? Read “Casual Kindness at PUC”, which has some suggestions for small acts you can incorporate in your everyday life that can help bring happiness to everyone you meet.

Don’t Be Stuck in Your Dorm Room

PUC has always promoted an active lifestyle and healthy living, and there are plenty of ways for students to stay active on campus. The gymnasium, officially known as the Pacific Auditorium but more endearingly called “The Covered Wagon,” is always full of students participating in a variety of activities. For students who enjoy the great outdoors, PUC owns over 30 miles of hiking and biking trails, and there are plenty of opportunities for outdoor fun.

The fitness center and weight room, climbing wall, and pool are used for both classes and independent recreation.

If being outside is more your thing, there are also outdoor sand volleyball courts, tennis courts, a track, and and multiple baseball and flag football fields.

From hiking and biking in the college’s back 40 property to the popular intramurals program, there’s something for every student at PUC.

If you’re interested in attending PUC, you can talk with an enrollment counselor in the enrollment services office about the application process and any questions you have about the college. Email enroll@puc.edu or call (800) 862-7080, option 2 to be connected with a counselor today.

PUC Releases Financial Aid Workshops Dates

Pacific Union College will host 16 financial aid workshops across Northern California and Hawaii, in a special collaboration with La Sierra University, during October and November. For the first time, the college will also be holding several online workshops throughout the fall.

The goal of these workshops is to provide families with the critical information they need to help finance a quality, Christ-centered college education. Topics to be covered include PUC scholarships, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), Cal Grant, and other scholarship and aid opportunities.

“PUC understands how critical finances can be for families when planning for college, which is why we strive to offer as much assistance and information as possible through our financial aid workshops. I want to personally invite anyone considering PUC to attend a workshop so we can discuss how we can make an Adventist education possible for your family,” says J.R. Rogers, director of recruitment. “Traditionally, we held these events in January and February, but we’ve moved them up to assist families with college financial planning.”

Workshop dates are as follows:

October 2 – Mountain View Academy
October 4 – Lodi Academy
October 9 – Redwood Adventist Academy
October 10 – El Dorado Adventist School
October 11 – Paradise Adventist Academy
October 17 – Armona Union Academy
October 18 – Fresno Adventist Academy
October 19 – Bakersfield Adventist Academy
October 23 – Central Valley Christian Academy
October 24 – Pine Hills Adventist Academy
October 25 – Napa Christian Campus of Education; PUC Prep School
October 28 – Monterey Bay Academy*
October 30 – Sacramento Adventist Academy
November 2 – Pleasant Hill Adventist Academy
November 13 – Hawaiian Mission Academy*
November 18 – Rio Lindo Adventist Academy*

*Please note, all workshops will be held at 7:00 p.m. with the exception of Monterey Bay Academy, Rio Lindo Academy, and Hawaiian Mission Academy; these workshops will be held at 6:30 p.m.

Joint financial aid workshops hosted by La Sierra University will also be held in Southern California and Arizona. For more information, visit puc.edu/workshops. The first online financial workshop will be September 12. Information about additional dates will be forthcoming.

Last year, PUC awarded students over $40 million in financial aid. To learn more about all of PUC’s scholarship and grant opportunities, and to apply, visit puc.edu/scholarships or call (800) 862-7080, option 1.

Get Ready for Fall 2018!

The fall is prime college application time for high school seniors. These days, the average student applies to at least nine colleges, and if you haven’t already started looking at potential schools for next fall, now’s the time–and why not start with PUC! Our online application is free and takes about 10 minutes to complete.

We’ve created a handy high school senior checklist to help you stay on track all year long. On it, you will find a breakdown of what you can be working on each month. Hopefully it will help you get things taken care of!

So, what else can you be working on? Plenty! Here’s just a few things to get you started; download the checklist for a complete inventory on what you need to do to be ready for college next fall.

Visit all the colleges you can

There’s no better way to see if a college is right for you than by visiting! We would love for you to join us on our campus. Take a tour with a student ambassador, meet with a professor in the major of your interest, and pick up some great financial tips.

Take the ACT and SAT—and leave yourself time to retake them

PUC accepts both the ACT and SAT. While they aren’t required for admission (except for admission on academic probation), tour test scores will be used for placement into math and English classes, and also for certain scholarship qualifications.

It’s a good idea to take the test several times, rather than just once, particularly if your score is close to the qualifications for a scholarship. 

Get ready to submit the FAFSA in October

Starting October 1, 2017, you can fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at fafsa.gov. Submit your FAFSA as soon as possible since some aid is awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Remember to include PUC’s school code (001258) to have your results sent to PUC, as well as to list at least one in-state college, otherwise you may be ineligible to apply for Cal Grant.

Visit puc.edu/enrollmentforms to download your copy of PUC’s high school senior checklist today!

If you have any questions about applying to PUC, contact the Enrollment Services office at enroll@puc.edu or (800) 862-7080, option 2. We’re here to help throughout the entire admission process, and we can’t wait to have you on campus next fall!

Alumni Profile: Manny Peralta

Meet Manny Peralta, who graduated in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies. Manny also completed an associate degree in graphic design in 2017, and currently works at the California Department of Food and Agriculture as an agricultural technician.

We talked with Manny and asked him to share about his senior thesis, “Wildflowers of PUC,” a guidebook he created that features flowers found on the college’s property.

Tell us about your “Wildflowers of PUC” project. What was the inspiration for it?

Most of my inspiration came from my constant exploration while hiking or biking out in the back 40 while I was a student at PUC.

How long did it take you to complete the book?

The project took me about seven months to complete. Most of the time was spent researching, identifying plants, editing photos, and designing the book’s layout.

What was your favorite flower that you photographed? Why was it your favorite?

My favorite flower that I photographed was Mimulus angustatus (pg. 82). I came across it while biking one day. I wasn’t expecting to find any flowers that day since it was early in the season. As soon as I saw it, I nearly fell off my bike trying to avoid riding over it, ruining my chances of photographing it. This is a flower I would come back to over and over to see how it was doing. Every time I would find more and more of the same kind.

What did you learn about yourself during the project?

I guess one thing I learned about myself was how much I can handle without breaking down from stress. I was able to manage my time wisely to balance going to class and doing homework while planning enough time to go out and explore the back 40 for hours on end.

We’ve heard there are plans for a second book. What are you planning to include this time around?

My second book idea is a bit ambitious but I believe it can be done. I have been planning to work with different national parks to be able to put together a comprehensive flower guide book to California. This is still in the developmental stage of  figuring out all the logistics and trying to put together a team and a group of sponsors that will be able to help me achieve this project.

What’s your typical workday like?

I’m currently working for the state’s Department of Food and Agriculture as an agricultural technician. A work day for me begins early in the morning around 6:30 a.m. and ends around 5 p.m. Each day I have a route that contains a variety of fruit fly traps I have to service and relocate onto different fruit trees. Some of the fruit flies that we trap are the oriental fruit fly, the Mexican fruit fly (mex-fly), melon fruit fly, and the infamous Mediterranean fruit fly, commonly known as the medfly. Many people might remember the early days when the state would implement radical solution like spraying pesticides over large residential areas in order to control the medfly. Besides monitoring traps I also interact with different homeowners to educate them about the different traps we place on their trees and the negative effects these flies have on our agriculture.

What are your hobbies?

Some of the more consistent activities I do are hiking and cycling, but I have recently started getting into rock climbing as well.

What is the most important thing you learned during your time at PUC?

I have to say the most important thing I learned was that with God, anything is possible.

Editor’s note: PUC is on a quest to permanently protect, preserve, and manage over 850 acres of the college’s forestland by purchasing a conservation easement. The PUC Forest Fund was created to help raise money for the easement, and if you feel compelled to donate, please visit  puc.edu/give.

Help Save the PUC Forest and Have a Delicious Snack Too!

PUC is on a quest to permanently protect, preserve, and manage over 850 acres of the college’s forestland by purchasing a conservation easement. The PUC Forest Fund was created to help raise money for the easement, and faculty, staff, students, and alumni have rallied around this effort. Enter black(40)berry jam, a business endeavor started by PUC professor Chantel Blackburn and librarian Katharine Van Arsdale, along with professor Maria Rankin-Brown, and Judy Ness, a counselor at the college’s career & counseling center. The goal of black(40)berry jam is to help raise money for the PUC Forest Fund.

We asked Dr. Blackburn to answer a few questions about the business, and why PUC’s property is worth preserving.

Where did the idea to sell jam come from?

I grew up picking blackberries in the summer and making blackberry pies. As I was picking blackberries on campus this summer for my first pie of the season, I realized there were going to be quite a few available to pick as they continued to ripen. I had done fundraisers in high school selling apple pies and that was a lot of work, but freezer jam seemed like an easier way to appeal to folks who might be interested in supporting a fundraising effort for the PUC forest. I didn’t feel like I could do it on my own but ran the idea past a friend, who suggested I contact two back 40 supporters, Maria Rankin-Brown and Judy Ness, who might be able to help me get things up and running. They’ve helped support the effort financially, with berries, and with the inspiration for the name! I still needed help making the jam so I contacted Katy Van Arsdale, who graciously agreed to help transform the berries into jam and fill the jars!

Chantel Blackburn and Katy Van Arsdale making black(40)berry jam.

Where in the back 40 are you picking the blackberries?

We’ve been picking blackberries mainly around the apartments and the airport. Maria also contributed about around a gallon of berries from bushes near her home, also on PUC property.

How long does it take for you to make the jam?

I think the most time-consuming part of making jam is picking and washing the berries. Picking about 14 cups typically took me about two hours and washing them (first in a solution of white vinegar and water then rinsed and dried) took at least another hour. We’ve picked between six and seven gallons of berries. Once that was done, Katy and I spent about 1.5 hours making our “first-run” of 36 jars (4 oz each) of jam. Now we know how the process works, it shouldn’t take us long to make the rest. We have enough berries, sugar, and pectin to make at least 120 jars total.

Why did you choose to donate the profits to the PUC Forest Fund?

Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, my paternal grandparents were always caring for their trees; I remember visiting during the summer in Oregon and playing with my brother and cousins for hours in the large wooded area behind their house and later exploring their 21-acre dream retirement property in Washington where they maintained their own forest and trails. I think their love of the forest modeled for me how important it is to be a steward of the land, and forests in particular, so supporting the PUC Forest Fund was a cause that really resonated with me.

Supporting the PUC Forest Fund is really intimidating due to the amount of money that needs to be raised for the conservation easement. I wanted to create an opportunity for people to feel like they could contribute even a small amount and still make a difference–and together I think we can! We’re using wild blackberries growing right here on PUC land to make our black(40)berry freezer jam. It seemed like creating a special product that was made from this natural PUC resource and could be shared with others was a perfect way to support the college’s forest conservation efforts.

What do you appreciate the most about PUC’s forest land?

For me, the PUC forest has provided a number of opportunities for me to build community and fellowship with friends while hiking the trails on Sabbath afternoons. Now that I’ve moved to a home in Veteran Heights, I appreciate the forest is basically my backyard!

How can someone buy a jar of jam?

We’re asking for a minimum cash donation of $4 for each 4 oz jar of black(40)berry jam and giving 100% to the PUC Forest Fund.

I’ve been taking reservations for jam on Facebook (e.g. Angwinville) or by email (cblackburn@puc.edu) and making arrangements to get it picked up–ideally at the College Market when I am there. I’m planning to have a table set up at the College Market on Fridays (12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.) and Sundays (11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.) until the end of August or the jam is gone, whichever comes first. If the jam isn’t gone by the end of August I’ll probably look at bringing it out again as the winter holiday season approaches.

Want to support the PUC Forest Fund but can’t make it to Angwin to get your own jar of black(40)berry jam? You can still donate at puc.edu/give.

Editor’s note: For more information about the PUC Forest Fund and the college’s progress towards purchasing the conservation easement, visit pucforest.org.

**Update 8/7 Due to the overwhelming success of black(40)berry jam, we’ve followed up with Dr. Blackburn and asked her a few more questions about the jam making process and her plans to make more jam!**

How much does it cost to make a jar of jam?

The cost for making one jar of jam, including the sugar, pectin, tag, and jar is around $1 but most of the expense is for the jar.

How did you fund the production of your first 100+ jars?

In order to ensure 100% of the proceeds could go to the PUC Forest Fund, a small group of us split the cost of producing the first 100+ jars. We looked at it like an investment; $10 invested in production costs was expected to bring in at least $40 in sales that go directly to the fund.

How did your first full weekend (August 4 and 6) of sales go?

We completely sold out! I was just floored by the overwhelming response to our effort. We sold all 118 jars of black(40)berry and raised over $550 for the PUC Forest Fund. That’s much more than our minimum projection. We are so grateful for everyone who supported the college’s conservation effort by making donations and taking home some jam.

It’s fantastic that you sold out but does that mean you’re done with the fundraiser?

I know I said we would be done if we ran out of jam before the end of the month but due to the overwhelming response on our first full weekend out, we have decided to make another 100+ jars of black(40)berry jam so we can continue raising money for the PUC Forest Fund during the month of August. We probably can’t make much more than that because the availability of berries is beginning to dwindle, and so is our time before the school year starts; I for one need to start focusing on preparing for fall classes!

Will you be using previous funds raised to produce these new jars of jam?

Absolutely not—we are committed to contributing 100% of the proceeds to the PUC Forest Fund.

However, we are hoping there might be a few people who would be willing to invest, like we did, in making the next 100+ jars of black(40)berry. In particular, we are hoping to raise $100 to help defray to cost of additional production. This $100 doesn’t directly go to the PUC Forest Fund but it makes it possible for us to raise at least four times that much in jam sales that will.

If you don’t care for jam, or maybe you’re not local and wanted a way to contribute, I hope you will consider investing a few dollars in the production of our black(40)berry wild blackberry freezer jam. If you’re interested, please email me at cblackburn@puc.edu.

**Update 8/29 Dr. Blackburn provided our office with an exciting update regarding the final sales of black(40)berry jam that we wanted to share with our readers.**

Now that the black(40)berry fundraiser is wrapping up I thought I’d pass along some of our final numbers/facts:

  • 240 jars of black(40)berry wild blackberry freezer jam were sold
  • 2 celebratory blackberry strudels were consumed (a slice was given for any donation on our last day)
  • 8 days at the College Market
  • $93 raised to help fund the cost of the 120 additional jars we made after the first full weekend in August sellout
  • $1,500 raised for the PUC Forest Fund

Many thanks to everyone in the community and beyond who joined us in this effort to preserve our forest!

There is a recycling receptacle just outside the main entrance for the College Market where used black(40)berry jars (empty & rinsed) can be left. We’ve had 4 jars returned so far for reuse/recycling and hoping for more!

Editor’s note: For more information about the PUC Forest Fund and the college’s progress towards purchasing the conservation easement, visit pucforest.org. If you feel compelled to donate, visit puc.edu/give.