By Sarah Tanner
With over 70 different degrees and programs, PUC’s academic opportunities are wide-ranging and diverse. From world languages to physics to fine arts, students are encouraged to find a field that best suits their interests and talents. And with so many options available, everyone can find a major to match their specific gifts. We chatted with a few students in PUC’s top programs to find out what makes them so great.
Nursing & Health Sciences
One of PUC’s most popular tracks, the department of nursing and health sciences draws an increasing number of students each year.
McKenna Freier, sophomore
“I grew up watching my mom go through nursing school and got to learn alongside her at a young age. My passion for nursing sparked when I was very young, and since then it has only grown stronger. I want to help people get back to being healthy and living their lives to the fullest. I really appreciate how much the PUC department of nursing is there for the students. They give us many resources to help us along our journey as they know it is a difficult one. Once I was accepted they helped me work through everything and made sure I was ready to begin my nursing career with confidence. If I ever have questions or concerns they always have someone readily available to help.”
The department of business is another popular choice at PUC and is often combined with the pre-medical program as students seek a well-rounded college experience.
Kenneth Grae McKelvie, sophomore, honors student
“I decided to major in business mostly due to the advice of many physicians that are members of my home church who all wished they had taken business classes when they were in college. After graduating from PUC and medical school, I hope to use my business management degree to help start up my own pediatric clinic. I feel confident the skills I will have gained during my time at PUC will prepare me well as I look toward my career.”
Another popular choice for students hoping to attend medical school, the biology program offers a comprehensive overview of life sciences.
Victoria Gabardi, sophomore, honors student
“I was convinced to change majors from biochemistry to biology at the end of my freshman year after I realized how many classes from the department of biology would prepare me for medical school. As a biology major, I have the opportunity to take immunology, histology, and advanced human anatomy courses before I even attend medical school. Having a background with the material from these courses will prepare me well for the field of medicine. My favorite thing about the department of biology is all of the unique opportunities I receive. Learning biology can take place outside of a classroom. For instance, this spring break I am going to Kenya with my tropical biology class to do a mission trip while also taking time to learn biology. There are a lot of biology classes that involve going on hikes in nature or going to the beach to study marine science. I also love how elegant biology is. It can encompass something as small as a single protein in an organelle to something as large as rainforest ecosystems. It connects life from all levels of organization.”
Another widely pursued program is exercise science. The department features programs designed to prepare students for careers in physical education and the exercise sciences, which are often combined with pre-professional programs.
Amy Robles, sophomore, honors student
“Something I appreciate about the department is that they inform you well about the different areas in which this major is useful. They require classes that cross over with the subjects I will also learn about in graduate school, including anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, and exercise physiology, among others. With this degree, I plan to apply to the physical therapy program at Loma Linda University. My future goal is to specialize in pediatrics and work with kids that have disabilities. I think PUC’s department of exercise science is preparing me for this career by introducing me to many of the topics I will be learning in graduate school and teaches us about sports and athletic injuries that I may encounter as I advance in my career.”
Vastly different than the sciences, PUC also offers a number of humanities-based majors. Degrees in visual arts range from photography to graphic design to film, and many things between.
Keren Castro, freshman, photography
“I picked visual arts because it is something I have been passionate about since seventh grade. Originally, I thought photography was simply a hobby, but as time progressed, I realized it is something I want to gain a deeper education in. One thing I really appreciate about the department of visual arts at PUC is its flexibility. Everyone is open to new ideas and the overall mindset of the department fosters individual creativity. Someday, I definitely want to start a business and have my own studio. I think it is something I will be able to do after graduating from PUC.”
An increasingly popular option at PUC is communication. The program includes three emphases to choose between, as well as a handful of minors.
Hailey Johanson, sophomore, honors student
“My favorite aspect of being part of the department of communication are the professors. I strongly believe my department has some of the most dedicated, smart, and passionate faculty at PUC. My department is run by strong, intelligent women, and their life experiences and candor really speaks to me and motivates me to pursue this degree. Likewise, I appreciate the in-depth knowledge my degree encompasses. There are so many aspects of communication; its applications are everywhere. Communication is a crucial facet of the human existence and is an integral part of every field. I am of the opinion the opportunities for a communications major are endless. It is for these reasons I love my department as well as my major.”
The personal testimonies of so many students speak for themselves, and regardless of one’s choice of department, pursuing a degree at PUC is sure to be a rewarding experience. Those interested in learning more about the programs offered on campus are encouraged to explore PUC’s website to learn more about the available courses of study at puc.edu/academics.