Closing the third academic year at Oak Valley brought about many things to be grateful for. First, and foremost, join in and praise God for all the gifts, talents, and resources He has provided over this foundational journey.
As Californians, and more generally, as Americans, we should strive to ensure every opportunity is afforded the next generation to earn a high-quality (and we would argue affordable) education, so the next generation may effectively thrive and support us old people. This is not a zero-sum game (that phrase seems to be popular these days).
To many people economic theory seems upside down. Thus, it seems only fitting that Oak Valley’s Professor Robert Brocco comes from Down Under. As a transplanted Aussie, he fits the stereotype of the thickly-accented overtly friendly persona found in popular culture, and he seems only too happy to play up the stereotype to students.
When you first meet Alayna, you get the sense that this is someone you want to get to know. Alayna carries herself with a quiet confidence. Maybe you know someone like that. She keeps to herself, until others get to know her. She comes across as responsible, caring, and able to get things done without making it about her. She is not someone that needs the headlines.
NEW DEAN OF ACADEMICS
Afarah Board transitioned into the Dean of Academics position effective May 1.
We would like to thank Dean Gayle Linn for her extraordinary service as Dean and wish her well as she and her husband enjoy their retirement life.
Dean Board brings with her a background of over thirty years of experience in the corporate world as a senior leader and multiple years of experience teaching as Adjunct Professor at California Baptist University in the School of Education and School of Business. She earned her graduate and undergraduate degrees from the University of Redlands in Business, and business studies at Harvard Kennedy School and Pepperdine University. We welcome Dean Board to the Oak Valley family.
WELCOME OAK VALLEY’S NEW PROFESSORS
As the Summer Semester began in May, we welcomed two new professors:
Professor Cammie Donaghy, Government and Politics
Professor Nathanael Heyman, Scientific Principles and Practice
DEAN’S LIST SPRING SEMESTER
Congratulations to the students who made the Dean’s list for the Spring Semester. Students with a 3.5 GPA or higher are eligible for the Dean’s List. We are pleased to give a shout out to these students:
Hanna Morris (graduated in May)
Whitney Hetrick (graduated in May)
WRITING CENTER LAUNCHED
Good news, the Writing Center was launched and is now available under the direction of Professor Glessner.
Fifty years ago, Harvard (and many private colleges and universities) charged around $2,000 for tuition. Adjusted for inflation, Harvard tuition should be just over $15,000 per year today. Needless to say, Harvard charges nowhere near $15,000. This coming Fall, the sticker price for Harvard is $47,730, roughly triple the inflation-based price
As a distinctly different kind of college, Oak Valley has tapped into the angst and pressure students often feel to either chase expensive private education, meander through the maze of community college to the Cal State system (it typically takes 6+ years to graduate with a bachelor’s degree from the public system, or forgo college for the future.
Adela is a junior at Oak Valley. She is the kind of individual who has it together - strong, outspoken, confident. Her backstory is full of challenges and perseverance. However, when you hear Adela talk, she talks in a matter of fact quality that accepts things as how they are and deals with everything as it comes.
Oak Valley’s first Faith and Business Forum, on May 31, was a great success with multiple pastors and community leaders coming together to discuss the intersection of business, church, and ministry aspirations. Through an engaging panel discussion, the group explored practical approaches to engage business and church leaders to better serve the local and regional community.
Hilda Kennedy, Founder and President of Ampac Business Capital, discussed how she formed a ministry for business leaders at her church. She described how business leaders face the same kinds of struggles as anyone else and need to join together to share their challenges and celebrate their successes like any other “affinity” group churches commonly form.
Business owner Joe Annunziato, President and CEO of Cerenzia Foods, discussed how he works ministry into his workplace and how he has helped lead several ministry connections with his congregation, Water of Life, in Rancho Cucamonga. He also described both personal and spiritual experiences he has explored over decades of church and business leadership.
Ray Blom from The Corporate Advocate, discussed the myriad ways he has grown in his faith through his business endeavors, and how he is building a nonprofit faith-based staffing company, economic development enterprise, and employment ministry to serve San Bernardino through The Way World Outreach. His pastor, Marco Garcia, is a long-time business leader, so the linkages and opportunities to align a business and ministry mindset is ingrained in their church culture.
Finally, President Eric Blum, Oak Valley College, talked about the challenges and opportunities Oak Valley has faced in partnering with local churches throughout the regions, with some churches understanding the intersection of education, business, and ministry, while other pastors are seem a little more reluctant to embrace the connection. Oak Valley’s host and partner, Centerpoint Church, through Pastor Dane Aaker, embrace these principles and has served as a model partner to advance Oak Valley’s mission.
Early in her career, Debbie Martis earned an MBA, and worked at a Fortune 100 company. From there she joined the executive leadership team at a mega-church. Now, she is founder and Executive Director of Rebirth Homes, a ministry focusing on human trafficking.
Graduating Senior Hannah Morris spoke about how the past three years transformed her from a shy student to a confident leader. She explained that she never intended to pursue a business degree, but the opportunity to earn her degree in three years with no student loans was too compelling to pass up.
God’s presence is often referred to as beautiful. When a person gives their heart to Christ, it is beautiful. When we see the moving of the Holy Spirit in the life of a wayward believer, it is beautiful. When the world sees God working in powerful ways, it is beautiful. When a child is born and takes its first breath, it is beautiful.
In the Old Testament,
Oak Valley’s Commencement features Willie Banks, Olympian, world-record triple jumper, and successful business leader. Mr. Banks will share the inspiration that helped him move from the Olympic stadium to serve in a variety of national and international leadership roles.
Mr. Banks’ path through Olympics and World Championships provides a fitting metaphor to students - spend years preparing yourself, then speed down a runway, timing your steps just right to hit your mark and stretch to reach your goal.
The Brookings Institute reports that default rates for students entering college in the early 2000’s could top 40% by 2023. As we reported earlier, student loans continue to weigh heavily on consumers.
You may have read that loans on cars and other consumer debts are rising steadily and, in some cases, are at record levels. This is troublesome in an economy that is at, or near, its peak.