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Pacific Union College gives graduates their send-off at Angwin ceremony

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A season of academic celebration in the Napa Valley continued Sunday morning at Pacific Union College, where 198 students became the newest graduates of the private four-year school in Angwin.

A ceremony on the Maxwell Commons of PUC’s Upvalley campus honored most of the 136 women and 62 men of the Class of 2022, who were awarded a total of 218 degrees from the school, a Seventh-day Adventist institution with more than 900 students.

The new graduates, along with many of the hundreds of spectators, punctuated their ceremony with the Frisbee-like tossing of tortillas across the lawn, with some audience members handing the foodstuff to students entering the commons for their graduation. The tortilla-throwing tradition at PUC commencements formed a playful counterpoint to a graduation weekend that earlier included a consecration service Friday night and Sabbath school on Saturday. 

Graduates of the college’s nursing program also were recognized in a ceremony Saturday afternoon. The Class of 2022 includes 137 students of nursing and health sciences, the most of any academic group.

PUC’s commencement bookended a local graduation season largely marked by traditional cap-and-gown ceremonies with full audiences, more than two years after the coronavirus pandemic forced an abrupt move to remote learning and socially distanced events across the U.S.

Napa Valley College led off the county’s graduation slate May 26 with an outdoor celebration at Napa’s Memorial Stadium, followed by galas over the next three weeks hosted by public and private high schools in Napa, American Canyon, St. Helena and Calistoga.

For more photos of the Pacific Union College graduation, see Page 3 of the Monday Register or visit napavalleyregister.com. 

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You can reach Howard Yune at 530-763-2266 or hyune@napanews.com

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