Clark Partners Magazine


Foundation awarded Bronze Anvil Commendation

Clark College Foundation received a distinguished 2020 Bronze Anvil Commendation from the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) for the 2019 editions of Clark Partners magazine. Clark College Foundation was recognized among other seasoned professionals at the national level who work at prestigious advertising and public relations agencies, the federal government and major corporations such […]

Clark Partners Spring 2020

“I don’t consider myself a Joan of Arc type of person. I don’t look back to see what wonderful things I did. But I have to say, I was very pleased that (those things) happened.”     ~ George Oberg Jr. ’58   Time will tell 50 years of activism by Clark alumnus George Oberg helped […]

2020 Outstanding and Rising Star alumni

  A Tradition of Excellence. We celebrate Clark College alumni who are making significant contributions on the local and world stage, and at Clark. They are leaders. They make substantial contributions to their communities. They produce outstanding achievements. They are truly inspiring people. They are our 2019-2020 he Outstanding Alumni and Rising Star Alumni Award […]

Time will tell

50 years of activism by a Clark alumnus help shape the Northwest LGBTQIA+ movement.   Time. It’s the first thing a visitor notices when entering the home of George Oberg Jr. ’58 in historic downtown Vancouver, Wash. Part of the reason for this has to do with the house itself—an elegant, if somewhat dated, 20th […]

Music defines him

Autism used to shape Ian Engelsman’s interactions with others; now music is this drummer’s guiding force while he’s at Clark. First came the pots and pans. A 3-year-old Ian Engelsman would pull them out of the kitchen cupboard, bang and clang them for about half an hour several times a day. A couple years later, […]

Getting back more than they give

Long-time volunteers exude the benefits of their commitment to Clark, the community   John Allen, a native New Yorker, flew to Seattle for a job interview in 1972, hoping to land a West Coast job with his employer, General Electric (GE). The interview went poorly and Allen left feeling defeated. To his surprise, he got […]

New Clark president excited to provide affordable and accessible education

Dr. Karin Edwards has an impressive history of leadership, closing achievement gaps, working in equity, building partnerships    On February 21, 2020, Clark College marked a milestone when the board of trustees announced that Dr. Karin Edwards was the college’s next president, the 15th leader in Clark’s 87-year history. Edwards comes to Clark with a long list of achievements […]

Cowlitz Indian Tribe commits to Veterans Resource Center

The Cowlitz Indian Tribe committed to a $246,000 grant over three years in November through its Cowlitz Tribe Education and Arts Fund in support of Clark’s Veterans Resource Center (VRC). The commitment from the Tribe demonstrates a significant level of trust and partnership with Clark College and Clark College Foundation. To date, $1.1 million has […]

Clark Partners Winter 2019

  “I don’t know that I ever served with or know of anybody that has more integrity than Al (Bauer).” ~ U.S. Rep. Dennis Heck Washington’s education senator Cattle rancher, lawmaker, teacher, education advocate and donor upped access for students across Washington. Listen to the podcast   You’re supporting the future of this world Student […]

Ed Boston is new alumni director

Boston is an accomplished Mars sale executive, and career, alumni services director   Ed Boston is Clark College Foundation’s new alumni director. Boston is coming to the Northwest from Fort Valley State University in Georgia where he served in a similar role. Prior to heading the alumni program in The Peach State, he served as […]

Energizing career ambitions

Local philanthropists help Clark students avoid debt, stay in college By Claire Sykes   Hailey Runyon wanted to prove she could support herself and earn her own way, just like her father had done at her age. Ian Williams’ parents were flat-out unable to pay, so he had no choice but to be self-reliant. And […]

Al Bauer, Washington’s education senator

Cattle rancher, lawmaker, teacher, education advocate and donor upped access for students across Washington   By Lily Raff McCaulou     In 1948, regretting his decision to work in a cannery for 80 cents an hour and feeling jealous of friends who had gone to college, Al Bauer showed up at Clark College with his […]

Sen. Al Bauer Podcast, Washington’s education senator

    Washington Sen. Al Bauer, cattle rancher, lawmaker, teacher, education advocate and donor, helped change the face of education in the state of Washington in the 70s, 80s and 90s through his tireless efforts to reform the K-12 system and higher education. Listen to Bauer’s versions of behind-the-scenes politicking in the State Legislature, like […]

New Penguin supporters flock to Promising Pathways fundraising campaign

$23 million already raised, 4,545 unique donors have joined By Joel B. Munson   Clark College is more than halfway into its $35 million fundraising campaign known as Promising Pathways, and the numbers are looking very promising indeed. Not only has the campaign already soared past the midway mark—nearly $23 million in donations raised—but more […]

You’re supporting the future of this world

“I was born and grew up in a small community in the northwestern part of Kenya in East Africa. I grew up with a family of a doting mom with about six siblings. By age of 6 or 7, I lost my dad; that was the beginning of a tragedy in my life. After my […]

Clark Partners Summer 2019

  Stolen sisters Clark alumna champions bills for missing and murdered indigenous women   Banner year for fundraising Foundation accepts $8 million in gifts and pledges from generous community members.   Ready. Got help. Go. Tailored and equitable services keep Clark students on their educational path   Just being me Two female veterans find their […]

Stolen Sisters: an indigenous tragedy

Indigenous tragedy propels Washington state representative and Clark alumna to champion two bills   By Claire Sykes     For almost a decade, hundreds of red dresses have been hung on college campuses and outside state capitols, from freeway overpasses and in front yards, all over the United States and Canada. Gina Mosbrucker can’t get […]

Ready. Got help. Go.

Tailored services keep Clark students on their educational path   By Lily Raff McCaulou   Channell Sugar-Star’s road to college was not a smooth one. She bounced between foster homes, endured childhood abuse, struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder and eventually overcame drug addiction. She was in her 30s and newly sober when a woman in […]

Vets helping vets

by Rhonda Morin Buck Marr was approached by his friend, Les Burger, a retired major general and medical doctor, who was working with Clark President Robert Knight, private donors and other partners to create the vision they held—establishing the first-ever Veterans Resource Center (VRC) at the college. “I jumped at the chance,” said Marr, 73, a […]

Just being me

Two female veterans find their way home at Clark By Rhonda Morin   A Navy veteran would have dropped out of college for the third time had it not been for Clark’s Veterans Resource Center. An Army veteran had to give up her military career after she started having seizures. That Army veteran’s work-study job […]

Banner year pushes foundation closer to campaign goal

More than $8 million in gifts and pledges were accepted from generous community members   By Joel B. Munson Clark College Foundation has had one of its most successful fundraising years in decades. Donors and partners contributed more than $8 million in gifts and pledges during fiscal year 2018-2019 for the Promising Pathways campaign, according […]

Women deliver on promises

    Legacy fund honors outgoing president Robert and Paula Knight Legacy Fund created by Clark College Foundation   Pennies from heaven Shirley Ann Sackman, accomplished musician and Clark professor, leaves a legacy to Clark College.   Gifts from the heart More women today are driving their family’s giving by establishing charitable gifts in support […]

Warm bread left on doorsteps: a primer to giving back

Vita Blanco is the first in her family of 27 to get a high school diploma and college degree. Passionate donors assist in her journey. By Rhonda Morin Nearly 57% of all men and women in the United States who entered college in 2011 received a college degree by 2017, according to the National Student […]

Gifts from the heart

More women today are driving their family’s giving by establishing charitable gifts in support of their loved ones, while beginning a legacy at Clark College By Lily Raff McCaulou Making charitable gifts can save taxes and establish a family legacy in areas people are passionate about such as education. Still more, such gifts can provide […]

There is more than one way to give to Clark

Two women, from different experiences, discover the rewards of volunteering for Clark’s alumni board and the Entrepreneur Club Pitch Fest By Claire Sykes “It’s a way for me to give back to the community.” That’s what Brittini Lasseigne ’05 says about volunteering on Clark College’s Alumni Board. While her gratitude and generosity connect her to […]

Pennies from heaven

Shirley Ann Sackman, accomplished musician, saver of pennies and beloved Clark professor, leaves a legacy to Clark College following her death in March. By Shelby Sebens   Shirley Ann Sackman never took no for an answer. She never made excuses or let challenges deter her from her life’s ambitions. Despite being born without the use […]

Clark Partners Winter 2018

Clark to receive largest single scholarship gift Alumnus Robert Wallace leaves $4 million to Clark for flexible scholarships. Preparing for the advanced technology era Advanced techniques in manufacturing can triple a business’s yearly output. From fry cook to franchise king Decades of hard work in the fast food industry has paid off for Tom Cook. […]

From fryer to franchise king

Pacific Bells’ Tom Cook, who began his career frying taco shells and today runs a highly successful franchise, refines the recipe for business success by Joel B. Munson Photo above: Jen and Tom Cook with their twin boys Danny and Mikey. To say that Tom and Jen Cook of Ridgefield, Wash., have left their mark on Clark […]

Flexible and agile to the finish line

A new kind of scholarship, called flexible scholarships, helps with tailored services so students achieve their aspirations by Rhonda Morin Photo above: Michele Goodwin (left) and Greg Goodwin (right) get to know scholarship students Ariana Peters and Emanuiel Cota during a scholarship-partner meeting in July 2018. The Gregory and Michele Goodwin scholarship could not have come at […]

Advanced techniques can triple a business’s yearly output

Advanced manufacturing doesn’t have to involve one-of-a-kind products. It can also mean improving the consistency of a brand or the efficiency of a factory. By Lily Raff McCaulou   Next year, Clark College will break ground on its ambitious new campus — Clark College at Boschma Farms. The 70-acre property near Ridgefield will house what […]

Clark receives largest single scholarship gift

Alumnus Robert Wallace leaves $4 million to Clark Photo above: Bob Blanchard holds a photo of his father Robert B. Wallace. Wallace left a $4 million scholarship gift to Clark from his estate. By Rhonda Morin   When Bob Blanchard talks about his father, Robert Wallace, he remembers how conscientious the Depression-era youngster and World War […]

Partners Magazine Summer 2018

Announcing the alumni award recipients Outstanding and Rising Star alumni are making their mark on the community and in the world. Technology ignites diesel learning Students accessing real-world learning with innovative hands-free technology. The Silicon Valley tech firm moves to Vancouver thanks to Clark Hall of Famer. Sharing life’s abundance Growing up poor motivated Sanford […]

Sharing life’s abundance

Growing up poor motivated Sanford Jones to pursue a physics degree. Now long retired, his appetite for cuisine has led to a major gift to Clark. By Rhonda Morin From his earliest memories as a young boy in Atlanta, Georgia, and growing up in Cleveland, Ohio, Sanford Jones wanted to be a scientist. “I mixed things […]

Technology ignites diesel learning

Students accessing real-world learning with innovative hands-free technology By Lily Raff McCaulou One of southwest Washington’s hottest new technology companies is not housed in a glass-and-steel high-rise, but in a 19th century artillery barracks at Fort Vancouver. The offices have wavy glass windows and pressed tin ceilings. The conference room is filled with Victorian furniture. […]

DNA of dirt: Solving the antibiotic crisis

Using modern technology, students join national research efforts to discover new antibiotics in dirt By Rhonda Morin Imagine having a really bad bacterial infection. If doctors knew in a matter of hours—instead of days—what the strain was, they could prescribe an antibiotic to target the nasty bug and begin eliminating it before patients leave the […]

Tats and toys

Clark alumnus softens the sting of traditional tattoo parlors with family charm By Ryan Cunningham ’14 In the tattoo industry, the artists who create the intricate designs are easily assumed as being tough guys or gals. Potential customers nervously peak into the heavily painted window fronts to determine if they even dare enter, let alone […]

Special Alumni Issue

Family traditions Four generations trace their family tree back to Clark College—a common occurrence. 30 years of creating zest, pop and punch Celebrated student writers partner with alumni and donors who inspire them to follow their creative passions and publish. Been there. Done that. Clark alumni know what it takes to complete programs and they […]

A conversation with author Marie Bostwick

by Rhonda Morin This interview was edited for clarity and length. For the full interview, listen to the podcast. Partners: Marie Bostwick, welcome to Penguin Chats. Marie Bostwick: Thank you. Glad to be here. Partners: You’ve always loved the written word; I’ve read in your background that you dabbled in writing love stories as a […]

30 years of creating zest, pop and punch

The Columbia Writers Series is celebrating its 30th year at Clark College. Since its humble beginnings, the literary arts celebration has welcomed local, national and international authors to campus thanks to the efforts of dedicated English faculty. Ursula Le Guin, a popular writer of science fiction and fantasy who died earlier this year, appeared at […]

Family traditions at Clark

By Lily Raff McCaulou Trace the Giles’ family tree back far enough and it turns out it took root at Clark College. Nancy Novak ’57 was in her first year of studying for a career in medical technology when a friend, Doreen, invited her to lunch with a few other students. They met at a […]

Been there. Done that.

Clark alumni know what it takes to complete programs and they want to help today’s students   That’s the percentage of students at Clark College that currently complete their degrees or certificates each year before moving on with their lives. If that figure seems low, it is—and it’s one of the reasons why Clark College […]

Meet your alumni board

The alumni board’s mission is to connect alumni with each other and the institution, while supporting current students through Clark College’s Guided Pathways, a new retention and student success program for community colleges that assists individuals through the higher education experience from entry to graduation and into their careers. Azure Calder ’15 is a mortgage […]

Clear path to graduation

Clark’s new guided pathways simplifies complexities so students reach their goals faster By Lily Raff McCaulou When Michelle Pritchard was a little girl, she once tagged along while her grandmother had a routine dental cleaning. Pritchard loved to play dentist at home, so as her grandma leaned back in the exam chair, the young girl […]

Partners Winter 2017

Clear path to the finish Clark’s new guided pathways program simplifies complexities for students seeking their degrees, certificates and personal goals. Partners along path Alliances with local job centers move people quickly into jobs. Challenging oppressive systems An interview with Dr. Debi Jenkins on Clark’s strategy to pull down barriers. Available on our Podcast too. […]

Partners along the path

    Partnerships with community organizations or job-placement agencies ensure the success of Clark’s new guided pathways program, which helps students navigate college and leads them to their desired outcome. Margit Brumbaugh, Clark College’s educational planner and former guided pathways liaison, said the purpose is to give students more structure before and at the beginning […]

Student-athletes up their game

New athletic director sets the bar high on academics and NWAC appearances By Ainslie Cromar   Clark College’s Women’s Soccer team jogged to the center of the field in early October for the second half of their game against Lane Community College. The scoreboard gleamed red with the score at 1-1, the whistle squealed and […]

Challenging oppressive systems

Dr. Debi Jenkins speaks about systematic oppression, power and privilege By Rhonda Morin   Dr. Debi Jenkins is a highly-credentialed woman who never intended to be an academic. Originally, she took courses at Clark College for a certificate to run a daycare, but after earning her associate degree, she went on to get several degrees, […]

Retired track coach donates athletic scholarships to Clark College in perpetuity

George Fullerton makes largest-ever donation to Clark’s athletics program By Rhonda Morin A surprise announcement during Clark College Foundation’s annual gala resulted in an eruption of cheers, congratulations and big opportunities for future student-athletes at Clark College. Retired Clark College coach George Fullerton announced a long-term commitment of athletic scholarships during the Savoring Excellence dinner […]

From the president

Clark is a community of people who mix together every day to help our students discover their potential. Food is the common ingredient that we share. Combine the two to get fulfillment, laughter and connection. It was fun to be a part of the “In the Kitchen” article and video for this edition of Partners. […]

Partners Summer 2017

Around the table Culinary professionals agree that local farm-to-table produce and meats fortify our community. In the kitchen with Bob and Lisa Two of Clark’s busiest leaders join students to prepare a simple, nutritious summertime meal. Soldiers in the drink Two veterans focus their second careers on making wine Food park changes downtown vibe Alumni […]

Around the Table

Culinary professionals agree that food fortifies our community, builds strong relationships Whether it’s snagging those first strawberries of the season at the farmers market, talking tomato varieties over the back fence with your neighbor or enjoying a celebratory night out at a favorite restaurant—food isn’t just fuel for our bodies, it nourishes and shapes our […]

Clark College Foundation Presidential Award Recipients

  We honored Clark College’s outstanding alumni, students, faculty, staff and philanthropic partners at our event on November 2, 2017. This extraordinary event celebrates the spirit of achieving together what we cannot do alone. Clark College Foundation announces Columbia Credit Union and Glenn and Betty Tribe as its 2017 Presidential Award for Excellence in Philanthropy recipients. […]

In the kitchen with Bob and Lisa

Two of Clark’s busiest leaders join students to prepare a simple, nutritious summertime meal President Knight wants to know: “Where’s the meat?” Robert Knight, Clark College president, loves bacon. But he’s not a fan of tofu. Then he joined Lisa Gibert, president/CEO of Clark College Foundation, and Jonathan Dutson, a Clark Machining student, in the […]

Soldiers in the drink

Two veterans focus their second careers on making wine Robb Zimmel’s first interest in winemaking is rooted in its mystery. He grew up watching the matriarchs in his family make wine out of all kinds of fruit. Berries are crushed, the juice is poured into a container and then some kind of alchemy magically transforms […]

Food park expected to change downtown vibe

Alumni retrofit shipping containers into trendy food, drink carts   To Alex Mickle ’03 there are few insults worse than “traditional.” You might as well call him a sheep or a bore. It’s not surprising that for his new business venture, it wasn’t enough to simply open a food cart pod. Instead, he and his […]

Cup of steamed art

Local coffee shop offers original latte art, community feel By Ryan Cunningham ’14   Coffee shops are on nearly every corner, equipped with clever coffee pun signage offering convenient caffeinated pick-me-ups. So what is it that tempts you to stop in to any particular shop as part of your daily caffeine ritual? Latte art and […]

Eat, drink and make friends

Food events satiate students’ appetite for connection By Wanda McNealy ’17   Erika Aronson was hungry. She was running from work to school and forgot to bring a snack with her to class. As she was walking to class alone, Aronson, 20, noticed a sign in the Penguin Union Building (PUB) that said “Peer Mentor […]

Discovering gravitational waves

Cody Messick ’10, currently a doctoral student at Penn State University, was part of a team of scientists who confirmed the existence of gravitational waves – ripples in the fabric of space-time that resulted from the collision of massive black holes more than 1 billion years ago. He was the featured speaker during a small […]

Partners Spring 2017

Not such a dirty job Few women choose trade jobs. Clark is changing the perception of these jobs Trades network has your back Alumni in the trades Funding the future Growth and stability in our community hinges on balanced state funding Student tackle the cost of textbooks Clark students take action in Olympia Reinventing himself […]

Trades network has your back

By Lily Raff McCaulou Want to come to campus to speak or mentor women who are training for the trades? Contact Kelsey Hukill, director of alumni relations at 360.992.2767. As a network technician, Shawn Cismar is accustomed to stress. When a computer network is down, everyone shifts into crisis mode. Some people take out their […]

Women in the trades

Few women choose trade jobs. Clark wants to change that.   By Lily Raff McCaulou In the machine shop one day this winter, student Sunshine Hill confessed — over the squeal of grinding metal — that she was having a rough week. Hill, 34, had just weaned her youngest daughter, aged 2. She’d been up […]

Funding the future

Growth and stability in our community hinges on balanced state funding By Chato Hazelbaker     The Columbia River is where Clark County begins geographically and historically. It is impossible to imagine the region without the river. The waterway is a powerful force that touches every corner of our community, shaping history, commerce, transportation and […]

Student tackle the cost of textbooks

Clark students take action The Associated Students of Clark College (ASCC) is an active player in the legislative efforts of the college. In addition to supporting the college’s legislative agenda, ASCC develops its own list of priorities. This year it’s the cost of textbooks. ASCC President Sarah Moe estimates the annual cost of textbooks for […]

From the president

We’re your neighbors. We welcome you to our campus to take a course so you can learn a new skill or indulge in a passion, watch Clark students put on a play, borrow a book from our library shelves or—by this fall—sample our baking in our remodeled kitchen. Every day in our neighborhood, faculty and […]

Reinventing himself

A life of crime or productivity? Guess which one Mitchell Jackson ’93 chose. By Rhonda Morin   Mitchell S. Jackson ’93 had an attitude. He had the moves. He was going to be a professional basketball player. Yet, he never made it past the first season of his inaugural year playing for Clark College in […]

Local artist believes the best is yet to come

Vancouver is not the first city in Washington that comes to mind when one thinks of hip-hop culture. However, the Pacific Northwest has had a thriving underground hip-hop scene for 20 years and cannot be left out of the conversation. Vancouver native and Clark student Thomas Merfeld ’17, known in the hip-hop community as Wizeguy, […]

Partners Winter 2016

Ingredients for success Upcoming Tod and Maxine McClaskey Culinary Institute will be a plus for the regional cuisine and baking industries Sugar and spice and everything nice Alumna’s dream becomes popular downtown business RAMPing up online Mechatronics goes digital, expands access to rural students Out of the cold and into optimism Students struggling with homelessness […]

Ingredients for success

Upcoming Tod and Maxine McClaskey Culinary Institute will be a plus for the regional cuisine and baking industry   By Lily Raff McCaulou Just as every chef has their own way of making a classic recipe, members of the local food industry have differing ideas about what a person needs to succeed. That industry encompasses […]

Sugar and spice and everything nice

Alumna’s dream becomes popular downtown business  By Lily Raff McCaulou “If you have a good product and you’re nice and friendly, you shouldn’t lack for business (in Vancouver).” ~ Tierre Benton ’11 When Tierre Benton ’11 was 45 years old, her youngest child left for college. The mother of four was unsure what to with […]

Out of the cold and into optimism

Students struggling with homelessness are pointed to education   By Hannah Erickson   “The Pathways Center basically saved my life.” ~  Daniel Howard When Daniel Howard first came to Clark College, his motivation was simple: he needed to get out of the cold. It was winter, and Howard, then aged 39, was living on the […]

RAMPing up online

Mechatronics goes digital, expands access to rural students Offers new certificate in Mechatronics Fundamentals By Rhonda Morin   [dropcap]I[/dropcap]t all started with robots. Mechatronics professor Ken Luchini toyed with the idea of applying for a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to build a robot with mechanical hands that can grip objects. Instructors would use it […]

There she is

Alicia Cooper ’15 makes Top 5 at Miss America competition Current Miss Washington and two-time Miss Clark County winner Alicia Cooper ’15 took to the national stage in September at the Miss America competition and placed third runner-up (fourth place). She is the seventh contestant from the state of Washington to reach the Top-5 podium […]

From the president

Clark College campuses teem with thousands of students each year pursuing their higher education goals. Our donors are central to their success by providing scholarships and program support so that students get an opportunity to enhance their quality of life and enrich the community. As 2016 draws to a close and I pause to reflect, […]

Clark College at Boschma Farms stands ready for ground breaking

Master plan finalized By Rhonda Morin   Clark College and Clark College Foundation are waiting for the Washington State Legislature to approve funding to construct the first building on its newest campus – Clark College at Boschma Farms. Once funding is approved, Clark officials could break ground in 2019 on the Ridgefield, Wash., property. Clark College […]

Tough as nails

A plucky country girl forged her own future Throughout her career, Patricia Kaufman Wirth, Ph.D., held educational leadership positions in Washington and California. She received many awards, including the Clark College Outstanding Alumna of the Year in 1991. As the featured speaker at Clark’s 1991 graduation ceremony, she inspired the audience with her story of […]

Partners Summer 2016

  The universe speaks and Clark hears Cody Messick ’10 helped discover the sound of black holes colliding 1 billion years ago. Understanding gravitational waves Picture the universe as a jiggly waterbed mattress The element of surprise Prof. Roland Dietmeier demanded hard work and punctuality. When students didn’t comply, erasers would fly. Jerry’s story Wife’s […]

The element of surprise

Professor Dietmeier demanded hard work and punctuality Alumni revel in his teachings and the influence he had on their lives By Rhonda Morin   [dropcap]P[/dropcap]rofessor Roland Dietmeier was hard on his students. His former students remember him as demanding, quick-tempered, strict, intolerant of tardiness or absences and not generous with As. In the next breath, […]

The universe speaks and Clark hears

Cody Messick ’10 helped discover the sound of black holes colliding more than 1 billion years ago By Lily Raff McCaulou One of Cody Messick’s earliest memories is staring at a summer sky spattered with stars. The details are fuzzy: Was he watching meteors streak across the speckled blackness or was he straining to see […]

Understanding gravitational waves

Picture the universe as a jiggly waterbed mattress By Lily Raff McCaulou [dropcap]T[/dropcap]he  discovery of gravitational waves confirms a new understanding of gravity. Isaac Newton’s law of universal gravitation explains the proportional attraction of objects of differing sizes. It explains why the Earth orbits the sun, for example. The math to support this view holds […]

From the president

[dropcap]W[/dropcap]e lost a treasure of a man this summer. Ed Geiger passed away on June 22 after an extended battle with Parkinson’s disease. Ed was a beloved part of the foundation family for 29 years. Ed first joined the board in July 1987, served as board chair in 1995 and on several committees, most notably […]

Jerry’s story

Wife’s lifetime service to strangers motivates husband to give back By Rhonda Morin Jerry and Louvenia “Lou” Smith were the adventurous types. Retired by their late 50s, they spent two decades sailing the Atlantic Intercoastal Waterway. Then about five years ago, one of their sons got a job in the Northwest and the couple started […]

Partners Spring 2016

Feeding the world Alumna creating bakery goods from new variety of resilient wheat Sweet and special confections New line of specialty chocolates A river of knowledge as a remedy for suffering A young Zimbabwean dreams of lessening the suffering caused by cancer drugs Stemming the stereotypes Opportunities abound for women who love science A living, […]

Alumna creates bakery goods from new variety of resilient wheat

This is not a GMO. Soft durum wheat is developed by selective cross-breeding, similar to the way dogs were carefully bred to create an Irish setter. By Lily Raff McCaulou   Jessica Murray ’12 delights in the fact that her favorite pizzeria produces thin crust pizza that is made from a one-of-a-kind flour that is […]

Sweet and special confections 

by Lily Raff McCaulou Jessica Murray’s ’12 creativity in the kitchen is not limited to baked goods. She also has a soft spot for candy, especially chocolate. When Murray is not creating dough, breads or pasta using a new one-of-a-kind flour, she’s developing a line of chocolates for the Washington State University School of Hospitality, called WSU Crimson […]

From the President

It’s one thing for me to say that Clark College is a leader in our community, it’s another to show you. The story, “Feeding the World” in this edition of Partners, exemplifies the caliber of students who attend Clark. Jessica Murray ’12 is at the forefront of a possible global change in how the world’s […]

A young Zimbabwean dreams of lessening the suffering caused by cancer drugs

By Rhonda Morin The waterfalls in the Northwest are breathtaking. But when you come from the land of the Mosi-oa-Tunya, “the smoke that thunders,” you have bragging rights. One of Clark student Takunda Masike’s favorite places is Victoria Falls in his home country of Zimbabwe. This is where he goes to be energized by the […]

A living, learning lab

Clark’s greenhouse teems with native plants, educates students on sustainability By Toccara Stark Students move among stations at Clark College’s greenhouse, preparing cuttings from snowberry bushes, forming showy milkweed seed balls and potting more than 2,000 donated cedar trees. Students hold up their soil-covered hands as they listen to instructions on what to do next. […]

Science gave me purpose

Steve Carlson ’67 didn’t even like the subject. A Clark counselor changed everything. By Rhonda Morin Steve Carlson ’67 taught science for more than three decades and—13 years after retirement—still holds three teaching and administrative certificates. He’s a master teacher. He’s overseen operations, curricula and scheduling as a public school assistant principal, headed science departments, […]

Opportunities abound for women who love science

By Hannah Erickson   At first glance, Clark students Tammy Senior and Qi Wu don’t seem terribly similar. One is young even by the standards of Running Start, a program that allows high schoolers to take college courses; the other is coming back to college after serving four years in the military. One has spent […]

Partners Winter 2015

Captain of her destiny The first female Caterpillar field mechanic in Alaska goes big, real big. Channeling from the heart Talent flows from her fingertips, but her real passion is guiding others to a love of music Photojournal Environmental Studies class takes on ecological restoration project. On the tenure track Building academic excellence one faculty […]

First female Caterpillar field mechanic in Alaska

By Lily Raff McCaulou   On her maiden assignment as Caterpillar’s first female field mechanic in Alaska, Nancy Boyce ’08 was dispatched to a remote logging operation. Her mission was to fix a broken excavator on Prince of Wales Island, at the southern tip of the state, and return to the Caterpillar dealership in Juneau […]

Blossoming music

“The important thing is to feel your music, really feel it and believe it.”  ~ Ray Charles     The great master’s music – Johann Sebastian Bach—is very tough to play. At times a Bach fugue has two independent melodies being played with the left hand, two with the right, and folded in is yet […]

From the president

The depth of talent and sacrifice at Clark continues to amaze me. Hailey Rowden, who you will read about in this edition of Partners, could easily have a long and prosperous career as a full-time musician. At age 20, she is already a professional who performs regularly in the Northwest. But her desire to teach […]

Photojournal

  Professor Kathleen Perillo, upper left, takes her Environmental Science class into the field. On this day, students visited Lacamas Lake to count plant species. The class is also involved in an ecological restoration project of a 10-acre tract of land in Ridgefield, the home of Clark’s future campus. Read about the improvements the students […]

Building academic excellence

By Toccara Stark   Tenure is a contentious topic. Some in the media, politicians, parents and even administrators have spoken out against the process and institution of tenure. These arguments have ranged from issues around academic standards to those of tenured faculty members who are unqualified or misbehaving without repercussions. Here at Clark College, some […]

Partners Winter 2015

Captain of her destiny The first female Caterpillar field mechanic in Alaska goes big, real big. Channeling from the heart Talent flows from her fingertips, but her real passion is guiding others to a love of music Photojournal Environmental Studies class takes on ecological restoration project. On the tenure track Building academic excellence one faculty […]

Partners Summer 2015

  The Language of Medicine Human cadavers offer a unique learning experience unparalleled by books or plastic models Under the hood Clark’s T-TEN Toyota technician training exceeds business expectations, grads land good-paying jobs Clark inks internship deal with second dealership Program will mirror T-TEN The automated way Veteran of industrial engineering goes back to college […]

From the President

  I look out my office window each day and marvel at the future of Clark College as the pipes, pumps and other mechanical infrastructure are put into place in the new science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) building. This structure represents the heart and soul of tomorrow—higher educational attainment and family-wage jobs for the […]

Seeing the world differently

  From an innocent child’s game to a random traumatic event, suddenly everything Griffith knew would be challenged. By Rhonda Morin     Eight-year-old Abby Griffith was playing tag with her best friend by the river in the heat of the afternoon in the southern Ethiopian city of Wolayta Sodo. As the multi-colored silk dress […]

The automated way

Veteran of industrial engineering goes back to college after job goes to Mexico By Shelby Sebens     Joe Cristman’s binder is covered with a cartoon of Albert Einstein wearing a shirt that reads “Mechanerds.” The binder is a symbol of Cristman’s, 59, devotion to learning technology, and in particular, a funny-sounding field called mechatronics […]

Clark inks internship deal with second dealership

by Rhonda Morin   Students get ahead of the curve in the industry and immediately connect with employers in Clark’s T-TEN program, but the word is also out that the T-TEN is a win for all involved in the manufacturing, repair and service of automobiles. Clark College reached an agreement in June with a second […]

Under the hood

Clark’s T-TEN Toyota technician training exceeds business expectations, grads land good-paying jobs By Shelby Sebens     Veteran professional auto technicians can spend years, even decades, trying to pass a series of advanced industry tests to gain their Automotive Service Excellence certifications that put them ahead of their peers in the workforce. It took Clark College […]

The Language of Medicine

Human cadavers offer a unique learning experience unparalleled by books or plastic models By Rhonda Morin     When second-year Nursing student Dustin Carlson hears a patient talk about radiating leg pain, a clear picture of muscles, fat, arteries and veins, as well as the branch of nerves that travels through the sacrum comes to […]

Partners Magazine Spring 2015

  Features The beast of burden Dodging the default trap Ahead by a mile And baby makes three Other stories Second-chance price tag Expanding into the future Financial picture From the presidents

And baby makes three

Same-sex couple adopt infant girl, find community network essential By Rhonda Morin   One would think that years of studying early childhood education, a doctorate in family studies and intervention, and 17 years working in the profession would prepare a man for parenthood. But for Clark alumnus Andrew Garland-Forshee, the true education came during the […]

Ahead by a mile

By Lily Raff McCaulou As a junior in high school, George Fullerton clocked a blistering 4:20.05, breaking the famed Louis Zamperini’s 1934 mile record. But it never made the record books. On June 3, 1946, at a high school track in Portland, Ore., a gun fired and four crouched runners bolted forward. A modest crowd […]

Dodging the default trap

Half of Washington State’s community colleges struggle with high default rates By Jeremy Vetter As a graduate of a local Seventh-day Adventist boarding academy, Melissa Wright wanted to attend Walla Walla University, which boasted one of the best programs in Seventh-day Adventist higher education in Washington. The high cost of tuition led Wright’s parents to […]

Second-chance price tag

By Rhonda Morin Student Stephen Miller left his job as a garbage collector after being injured. He enrolled at Clark and is set to graduate with a loan debt of $12,000. An injury on the job, bankruptcy and home foreclosure made for a pretty grim future for Stephen Miller. The Vancouver resident’s work as a […]

The beast of burden

Half of Clark students receive financial aid Far fewer get scholarships By Rhonda Morin   It costs about $4,000 for tuition and some fees to attend Clark College for a year. Tack on another $1,000 for books, supplies, other fees and thousands more for living expenses such as rent, food and transportation. All told, the […]

Expanding into the future

Clark’s visions are coming to fruition by Robert K. Knight   Over the past year, we have seen many successes; we have seen many things that seemed like a dream or far-off vision come to fruition. Some of the successes were planned before I arrived at the college 11 years ago, while others are opportunities […]

From the presidents

The current level of borrowing money for colleges and universities across the United States is a staggering $1.2 trillion—with $1 trillion of that being the debt for federal student loans. One in 10 college graduates leave their institution owing more than $40,000, according to Forbes Magazine. Community colleges are not immune, albeit the debt is much less. […]

Partners Magazine Winter 2014

Features All in the Vegan Rat Race Other stories Reclaiming patient trust Steps to identify privilege, power and inequity New Culinary Arts facility promises fresh and healthy   Partners Magazine (pdf)

Steps to identify privilege, power and inequity

by Rhonda Morin   A woman with stylish hair, chiseled cheekbones, wide eyes and a smooth, creamy face adjusts her gray-fitted blazer as she eases her small frame into the chair before the search committee. A second candidate, larger framed, hair hurriedly pulled back in a messy clip, heavy facial powder trying to obscure rubbed-red […]

All in the Vegan

If it’s hard enough to get your kids to eat broccoli once a week, imagine feeding them green, red, yellow and other colored vegetables every day. Now throw in quinoa, barley and wheat berries. Is there any hope or would they starve? Clark College alumnus, chef and longtime vegan Brian McCarthy has spent his career […]

Rat Race

David Hubbard has worked on cars since he was 15 years old. So when the 29-year-old spotted a link on Facebook about a race in which he’d have to build the car first, he thought, “Why not?” The Rat Hard Race challenges participants to build their vehicles in 30 days for $3,000 or less. The […]

New Culinary Institute at Clark College promises fresh and healthy

Cuisine and Professional Baking and Pastry Arts Programs Clark College’s Culinary Arts, Food program opened on campus in 1958. Today’s facility was built in 1980 and at that time considered state of the art. Over the years there have been minor upgrades, but there have been no structural or service improvements to the facility. That […]

Reclaiming patient trust

The face of dentistry has changed in Dr. Gary Gilbert’s lifetime. When he opened his first Vancouver business in 1973 with three staff members, he intended to expand and become a practice that catered to everyone. What occurred instead was that he established the trust of locals, got to know their families on a first-name […]

Partners Magazine Summer 2014 Edition

Balance of hard and soft Race identity and paternal struggles torment Ryan Cunningham, but lessons in self-love revivify. The Journey of a Rose Refugee camp and domestic abuse survivor’s strength blossoms with gratitude for America. Campaign success From the president Clark College at Boschma Farms Engineering hope in Niger Practice makes perfect NASA launch

Practice Makes Perfect

Once paralyzed by public speaking, Roxane Sutherland ’87 now practices what she preaches Written by Rhonda Morin Roxane Sutherland ’87 was in the eighth grade when she got the crazy idea to run for a seat in a student club. She’d have to give a speech before the student body at McLoughlin Junior High School, […]

Engineering hope, promoting self-reliance in Niger

Clark alumnus designs irrigation pumps to help African farmers feed their families, jump-start local economy by Hannah Erickson It’s hard not to think about water when you’re in Niger. The landlocked sub-Saharan country, perennially near the bottom of the United Nations’ Human Development Index, has experienced three droughts in the past decade. According to the […]

The Journey of a Rose

Refugee camp and domestic abuse survivor’s strength blossoms with gratitude Written by Rhonda Morin The delicate and creamy petals of roses coupled with the sweet aroma that softens her mood and momentarily transports her to a lovely memory, is Sima Gazm’s lasting memory of her Turkish birthplace and her current home in Vancouver, Wash. Roses […]

Balance of hard and soft

Race identity, paternal struggles torment. Lessons in self-love revivify. By Rhonda Morin Ryan Cunningham was 8 years old when he learned who his biological father was. A boy of color, he self-identified as being of mixed race up to the day his mother took him aside and revealed her secret. Unexpectedly, he was made aware […]

Clark College at Boschma Farms

Dairy farmers with roots in Holland establish North County campus legacy By Rhonda Morin Growing up on dairy farms instilled a lifelong passion for Hank Boschma and his future wife, Bernice. Early morning milking, feeding, calving, mucking the stalls and moving the cows to pasture was physically demanding. However, the work was also rewarding and it […]

From the president

We did it. Thank you! My first thanks to you is personal. Your comforting support has meant so much to me as I grieve the passing of my husband of 25 years. Your words, thoughts, prayers and friendships are sustaining me and for that I am grateful. Your kind gifts to the Brett Gibert Memorial […]

Campaign Success – Thank you

In celebration of our success, please join us September 30 from 2:30-4:30 p.m. at Clark College’s Andersen Fountain located at 1933 Fort Vancouver Way. Interactive learning, free refreshments, music and more.  

NASA Rocket Launch Hits the Mark

After 1,000 hours of preparation, Penguin II rocket flies more than a mile high in Utah desert by Rhonda Morin Clark College’s Aerospace Club members left their Utah hotel at 4 a.m. on May 17 for a two-hour drive to the launch site to ensure they were called on first to deploy their homemade rocket. […]

More than Just Rewards

Roma Bergstrom’s single motherhood journey sets foundation for helping others by Rhonda Morin Her day started at 6:30 a.m.; waking her four children, ages 12, 9, 7 and 6, to prepare them for school. With four hours of sleep, having closed the Marion and Pom’s Pub for the second time this week, Roma Bergstrom dragged […]

A Lesson They Can Wear

Clark’s littlest penguins don kimonos in preparation for Sakura Festival By Hannah Erickson It’s the first sunny day the children in Terry Haye’s classroom in Clark College’s Child & Family Studies program have seen for a while, and the staff members need a few moments to gather everyone on the carpeted area normally reserved for […]

From the Presidents

Think back on a time in your life that utterly and profoundly changed you. Remember what it felt like in that precise moment and the months and years that followed. If that experience was a positive one, filled with euphoria and satiated by accomplishment, then you share a commonality with Clark’s science, engineering, technology and […]

Financial Picture 2012-13

A recovering economy delivered robust investment returns for Clark College Foundation. As a result, your thoughtful philanthropy is multiplying for scholarships, program excellence, facility enhancements and faculty and staff career development. All financial gifts made during this fiscal period contribute to the success of our Ensuring a Bright Future: Campaign for Clark College. The $20 […]

Leading the Way

Clark College students seen advances on campus International student enrollment is up 350 percent, adding a global perspective to learning at Clark. Water-bottle refill stations have been installed on campus, cutting down on the use of disposable bottles. The college had a successful accreditation review. Clark offers the most online courses in the state that […]

The Dirt on Antibiotics

by Rhonda Morin When you reach into your garden and scoop up a handful of soil, what do you find? A lot of antibiotics. In fact, more than 30,000 species of bacteria live in one cubic foot of soil and buried deep in the guts of those bacteria is some terrific stuff, such as antibiotics […]

Focusing on the Future

As Clark celebrates its 80th birthday, President Knight aims spotlight on what’s to come By Chato Hazelbaker   A few rows back at this year’s State of the College address, Che’yna Shotwell sat with her mother listening to all that Clark College has accomplished in the past year, and more importantly what lies ahead. She […]

The Real Stuff

Clark STEM students up against prestigious universities in their quest for glory By Rhonda Morin Imagine spending thousands of hours designing, painstakingly documenting and building a nine-foot rocket. You load everything into an SUV and drive 650 miles to Mule Flats about 20 minutes east of Carson City, Nev., to test if the thing will […]

From the Ensuring a Bright Future Campaign Leadership Co-chairs

Dear Friends, Six years ago we embarked on a challenge never before undertaken at Clark College—a comprehensive $20 million fundraising campaign. We dared to “dream the impossible dream,” as said by Robert Oliver, the founding dean of Clark College. “Never stop working to ensure that whether the lifespan of the college should be one year […]

Partners Magazine Winter Edition 2013

This is for the Students I’m Different from You Ensuring a Bright Future: Now’s the Time to Act Mission: Strong Reentry Thinking Globally, Acting Locally Passage from Victim to Victory

Thinking Globally, Acting Locally

Inspired by her parents’ Vietnam ordeal, Clark student directs her giving-back passion By Lindsey Ponder ’13   Eighteen-year-old Van Huynh was stranded on an island—by choice. The island was Malaysian-owned Pulau Bidong, a bleak and brutal rock barely able to sustain vegetation, let alone his life and the lives of the 40,000 other people attempting […]

Mission: Strong Reentry

Clark pledges to remove the barricades between veteran and civilian life By Rhonda Morin Touching down onto American soil was a relief, having spent the last 12 months in the tangled and soaked jungles of Vietnam humping 110 pounds of radio equipment, ammunition and supplies in a tattered rucksack. Paul Ruggerio entered the 173rd Army […]

Ensuring a Bright Future: Now’s the Time to Act

by Jan Oliva Your support can make all the difference in the success of the Ensuring a Bright Future Campaign for Clark College. We have less than $2 million to go to reach our $20 million goal of funding scholarships, equipping new facilities, providing program enhancements and supporting professional development for faculty and staff. We […]

I’m Different from You

Clark student pens book, inspires children to be themselves By Rhonda Morin   Casey Harrison often takes the back roads from his home in Battle Ground, Wash., to get to class at Clark College’s central campus. He doesn’t like the highway; too many cars. He prefers taking life a little slower and quieter—the reflective manner […]

Passage from Victim to Victory

By Edee Lemonier ’11 For many, enrolling at Clark College means a greater career trajectory and a brighter future. For Rhonda Bartley, an education moves her far beyond academics and into healing and personal growth. Bartley, 43, grew up in a loving, hard-working family in Vancouver, Wash. After three tours of duty in Vietnam, her […]

This is for the Students

Earlier this fall, I attended our annual scholarship reception, a standing-room only event that connects our donors with the students for whom they provide financial support. As I walked around the room greeting guests, I heard snippets of heartening conversations. Young and eager students spoke of their aspirations to be biomedical engineers studying cancer treatments, […]

Para Mi Hijo y Para Mi Vida

Single mother with chronic illness remains upbeat, determined to finish her Clark degree by Rhonda Morin Story updated 7/10/19 She wakes with a pounding headache. She slept fitfully, awakened every few hours by strange dreams and a gnawing in her belly from a hunger she’s been unable to satisfy because whole food hasn’t gone down […]

Exodus for Jobs and Opportunity Builds Multi-cultural Vancouver

by Van Forsyth Captains Lewis and Clark led a multi-national, multi-racial group across the continental divide and back. Outside Fort Vancouver was a cottage industry—people from Scotland, French Canada, Ireland, England, Hawaii and more than 30 different regional Native American tribes. It was World War II that formally brought this region into the modern, industrial […]

How Does That Work?

Bruce Elgort is a tech geek and entrepreneur. Though his formal education is in electrical engineering, he morphed into a tech guy early in his career. He also likes to talk. Mix his experiences together and you get an information technology wiz and software creator who likes to teach. Elgort, 50, is used to training […]

The Life of Bread

Doug Rountree ’72 makes baking a labor of love by Stephen Meuse Contributor to The Boston Globe Along the Vermont-New York line, the turn off Route 313 onto Murray Hollow Road is well-marked, but it isn’t long before we’re wondering whether we’re lost. As dusk approaches, the sun is dipping behind heavily wooded mountains and […]

Going International

Like the city of Vancouver, Clark College has a history of welcoming people of various cultures, socio-economic status and ethnic diversity. Nationally, the number of international students enrolled at U.S. college campuses has increased 39.5 percent since 2000—to a record high of 764,495, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Clark College is poised […]

Summer 2013 Edition

Our progress The life of bread Exodus for jobs and opportunity builds a multi-cultural Vancouver How does that work? Para mi hijo y para mi vida Going international

Our Progress

Well-educated and hard-working citizens give rise to a vigorous economy. Wondering how things work and committing oneself to finishing a degree no matter the obstacles, are characteristics of a Clark student. The following pages contain a handful of the hundreds of stories of exploration, determination, success and stumbles at Clark. Our community—with a past steeped […]

Last Glance

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What’s it Like to be 50?

[quote style=”boxed”]”Education is for improving the lives of others and for leaving your community and world better than you found it.” ~ Marian Wright Edelman[/quote] In 2023, Clark College Foundation will turn 50. What does 50 years old look like? It’s a sound reputation for philanthropic excellence in our community. It’s having rock-solid partnerships with […]

Financial Picture 2011-2012

Visit our generous donors on the Honor Roll You have the power to transform the world. The community’s investment is paramount for Clark College to meet the continuous workforce changes of the region and globally. Your thoughtful philanthropy in 2011-2012 resulted in one of Clark College Foundation’s most successful fundraising efforts in recent memory, and […]

Educated Ambition

Clark College infuses Southwest Washington with an educated workforce By Rhonda Morin & Barbara Kerr   Claudel Pierre, afraid for his life, fled Haiti by boat during the 1991 refugee crisis. He’d never been in a boat and couldn’t swim. But he was more fearful of being killed by the military members of Papa Doc […]

Sexy Lies

By Edee Lemonier ’11 Gov. Palin was depicted in bikinis and took heat for her wardrobe, glasses and toenail polish color choices while running for office. Vulgar details of Sen. Clinton emasculating men, particularly her husband, were commonplace during the 2008 election. Caroline Heldman was just a few weeks shy of her 15th birthday when […]

Joy of benevolent art

Family tragedy brings color and dimension to otherwise bland campus spaces by Rhonda Morin Listen to Yoko Ito-Gates play koto   See more art pictures   Situated near the walkway in front of the Cannell Library is an unlabeled bronze sculpture that at first glance looks like a tipped-over shield or a breast on a […]

Message from the Presidents

Real people, real stories Clark College is a microcosm of our community. It is where real people come bearing tangible motivations and hoping to be supported in their pursuit of improving their lives. Our students, faculty, staff, donors,alumni and friends are real people who have visions,shortcomings and triumphs, and who in some instances make gallant […]

Clark’s Stem Programs Inspire Women

Supportive clubs and mentors draw women into high-demand fields   New STEM building coming in 2016 10 instructional classrooms 11 laboratories Study areas and offices for life and physical science divisions and engineering $38 million in state funding for design and construction   Think for a moment how many male engineers, chemists, mathematicians, computer engineers […]

President’s Message

Clark College, a vibrant village square The proverb “It takes a whole village to raise a child” expresses many notions—one being that what we do sets the course for the whole community. Clark College is the village square. It is here wherein people with decades of work experience are retrained for new industries. Clark is […]

Alumni Spotlight: Michael Rash ’66

It was the 1960s. Hip-hugging slacks with bell-bottoms were in style. Women’s hemlines had crept up, while boots got higher. The Vietnam War was in full swing. Civil rights and race relations were on the minds of many. A soapbox set out on the patio at Clark College’s Gaiser Hall was a weekly ceremony in […]

Banking on Penguins

  Not only is Pat Sheaffer ’61 a Clark College penguin, but he has helped capture penguins for the Oregon Zoo. He has the battle scars on his hand from being pecked to prove it. Decades before Sheaffer became the chairman and CEO of Riverview Bank in Vancouver, he won a trip to Antarctica through […]

Next Stop on the Road of Life: College Degree

This story was updated on September 6, 2019. It was kind of a fluke. Dena Brill was down on her luck. Her nine years of long-hauling through 47 states was over after a back injury sidelined her. Being on the road was getting old anyway. She was tired of the uneasiness that brought her to […]

Breaking through the Barriers

Every child deserves the best education, regardless of their background By Edee Lemonier ’11 The majority of Early Childhood Education program professionals in Southwest Washington have either been educated or received continuing education through Clark’s program. Lucy Estrada-Guzman ’90 was only an elementary school student when she started her first job. At an age when […]