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March 2008 Highlights at a Glance


AWC Nursing Program Receives Continued Accreditation


2007 Graduating Class

The AWC nursing program was recently evaluated by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) for continued national accreditation. After a thorough evaluation, the program met all accreditation standards. The accrediting visitors are recommending continued program accreditation for 8 years, which is the maximum time allowed. The final decision will be made at the July commission meeting.

“Our mission at Arizona Western College is to offer educational, career and lifelong learning opportunities through innovative partnerships which enhance the lives of people in Yuma and La Paz counties. This recent accreditation visit and 8 year accreditation recommendation is a tribute to the dedication and effort of our nursing staff and the great partnership we have with the Yuma Regional Medical Center. Arizona Western College continues its nationally recognized lifelong learning wellness-centered learning model that meets the needs of our community,” Dr. Don Schoening, President, Arizona Western College.


Nursing Students at
Fall 2007 Flu Clinic

The nursing program has maintained continued accreditation since its initial NLNAC approval in 1970. National accreditation ensures students that the program exceeds minimum standards established by the Arizona State Board of Nursing and meets national standards of nursing education. This accreditation status also ensures that our graduates, who become registered nurses, may pursue higher levels of nursing education at any university in the country.

Furthermore, employers are now giving preference to graduates of nationally accredited programs. Like ours, these graduates meet higher educational standards and are better prepared to provide quality patient care.

Faculty and staff of the AWC Nursing Program are to be commended for their hard work and dedication. They maintained these high educational standards while completing the research and documentation needed for this visit.

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Phi Theta Kappa wins 7 Regional Awards


AWC President Dr. Don Schoening, Virginia Brindley and  Eva Olvera

A newly revitalized Sigma Beta chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa International Honors Society for Two-Year Colleges won a wall-full of awards – and even some cash – at the Arizona Regional Convention Feb. 29-March 2 in Mesa.

Four Sigma Beta members, all freshmen, attended the event along with the chapter advisor, Dr. Michael Miller.

Sigma Beta has worked feverishly over the past year and a half to raise its status from a One Star to a Five Star level in the PTK Chapter Development Program.
Besides the Five Star recognition, Sigma Beta also won the Regional Chapter Development Award for its accomplishment. Dr. Miller also won the Paragon Award for the top advisor in the Region with under five years’ experience.

Phi Theta Kappa also recognizes chapter accomplishments in three categories related to the PTK Hallmarks of Scholarship, Leadership, and Service. Sigma Beta won Honorable Mention in two of those categories – Leadership and Service.

Sigma Beta also won the award for the chapter that traveled the most miles to Regional events during the 2007 calendar year.

Finally, Sigma Beta also won the highest level of recognition for inducting new members. The chapter won the Pinnacle Platinum Award for increasing its membership by at least 10% for each of the past three years. The award carried a free registration worth $250 to the PTK International Convention in Philadelphia in April.

With their seven awards, Sigma Beta added nearly $1000 to their club account in addition to the Convention registration.

All of these awards were the result of the chapter’s immense dedication to expanding its activities and increasing its visibility on campus and in the community. Much of the credit goes to 2007 chapter President Virginia Brindley and 2008 President Eva Olvera, who also were this year’s AWC nominees for the PTK All-USA Academic Team.

Dr Don Schoening, President of Arizona Western College; “These two young women have excelled not only in scholarship but in college and civic engagement. They have strengthened Phi Theta Kappa to the highest five star level of achievement. Eva Olvera and Virginia Brindley are two more outstanding examples of our strong 2 + 2 partnership with Northern Arizona University in Yuma. Both plan to get their Baccalaureate Degree through our partnership. “

"Being rated as a Five Star chapter has helped us to overcome our self-doubt and fears. This recognition not only has brought us a great deal of honor, pride and a sense of accomplishment, but also has remarkably lifted our spirits," Virginia Brindley, 2007 Chapter President. "Each award is a symbol of our love for ourselves, our college, our community, and our beautiful country."

The chapter has an early start this year on repeating its proud accomplishments. Truly, 2007 was a watershed year for Sigma Beta.

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AWC Offers New Degrees For Fall 08


AWC student studying

Arizona Western College is pleased to announce the addition of two new degree programs as well as six new certificates being offered on the main campus beginning the fall of this year!

The addition of the two Associates in Applied Science degrees in Accounting and Recreation Management as well as the creation of the numerous certification programs increases the total number of degrees and certificates offered at Arizona Western College to over 100!

AWC has developed the various new programs to meet the growing needs of the Yuma community. After years of research and continued conversations with the Yuma business community and local business leaders the creation new programs evolve. With input from the Yuma County Chamber of Commerce, Greater Yuma Economic Development Corporation and various other local Yuma business leaders the development of the most recent degrees became a reality.

Arizona Western College also works closely with other local universities and colleges to create a smooth transition to their programs. With over 13,000 students annually the transition to a four year university is essential in the overall growth of Yuma’s educational community.

The last school year, Arizona Western College graduated 1026 degrees and certificates; NAU in Yuma gradated 237 bachelor’s and master’s degrees and the University of Arizona graduated 5 bachelor’s degrees.

AAS in Accounting
AAS in Recreation Management
Certificate in Accounting
Certificate in Computer Security
Certificate in Personal trainer
Certificate in Recreation Management
Certificate in Retail Management
Certificate in Spanish Proficiency

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Green Named Co-ACCAC Co-Coach of The Year

Coach Kelly Green the 2008 ACCAC Co-Coach of the Year


Arizona Western College is proud to announce that AWC Men’s Head Basketball Coach Kelly Green has been named as the 2007-08 ACCAC Co-Coach of the Year. The award was voted on this morning at the ACCAC postseason coaches’ meetings in Phoenix, and the announcement comes one day after the completion of the ACCAC 2007-08 regular season.

Green takes home the ACCAC Coach of the Year Award for the 5th time, sharing it this year with South Mountain’s Dan Nichols. The 2nd-winningest men’s basketball coach in AWC history also took home the honor after the 1998-99, 2000-01, 2001-02 and 2004-05 seasons. This season, Green took a team that lost 4 starters from a year ago and kept them at the top of the ACCAC for all but three days this season with a national ranking that reached as high as 10th in the NJCAA Poll.

Green's Matadors won the ACCAC Regular Season title this season with a 26-3 overall record and a conference mark of 20-2.

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Educational Transfer Fair


 AWC Students Learning More About Transferring


Arizona Western College hosted the 2nd Annual Transfer Fair on the main campus in the LR (Learning Resources) Breezeway, Thursday, March 13th. 

The Transfer Fair was for college students in need of more information on the different programs available at area universities.  There were representatives from over 20 colleges and universities including Arizona State University, CESUES – Mexico, Dickinson State University – ND, Dillard University - New Orleans, LA, Grand Canyon University, NAU Yuma , San Diego State University, University of Arizona, University of Phoenix and the U.S. Army.

This informational fair setting allowed current students to discuss the opportunities in financial aid, scholarships and academic programs all available to them at the different colleges and universities. The students  had the chance to ask one on one questions and explore the choices that lie ahead for them.

The AWC Transfer Fair was open to the public. This fair also gave the community the chance to discuss furthering their higher education all in one stop on the AWC campus.

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 Colton to Serve on National Selection Committee


Samuel Colton Appointed to National Selection Committee

Arizona Western College is proud to announce the appointment of Mr. Samuel Colton, AWC Professor of Welding and Coordinator of Technical Instructional Department, to be one of only two educators on the national AWS SCC (American Welding Society Skills Competition Committee).

This national committee meets face to face twice a year. Once at the SkillsUSA National Welding Competition which is sponsored and staffed in large part by the AWS SCC and then at the annual AWS welding conference and show where the nations top welders from the SkillsUSA competition compete to represent the United States at the international skills competition.

Samuel Colton; “I am grateful to represent our community through my service on this national AWS committee. As a welding student at KofA High School more than 30 years ago the American Welding Society was something I only read about in its technical journal. Thanks to my high school teacher Mr. Larry Lebsock and my college professors Mr. Ernest Lopez Sr. and Mr. Gonzalo Huerta for helping me choose welding as a career and membership in the American Welding Society.”

This committee helps facilitate the selection process for the national SkillsUSA welding contest winner and the selection of the top student for the international level skills competition. The selected delegate will represent the United States at the competition in Alberta Canada.

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 AWC Partners With Cornell for Certification


Christina Hawkey Coordinating the FDC Program.

Arizona Western College and New York’s Cornell University are partnering to offer AWC students the Family Development Credential. The AWC certificate is designed to provide paraprofessionals working with children and families in the community with the skills and competencies to empower family members towards self-reliance and interdependence.

Following successful completion of the FDC, individuals may apply for a nationally recognized certification, The Family Development Credential issued by Cornell University.

The proposed certificate program includes eleven (11) credit hours. Each of the prescribed courses of this program have an embedded laboratory experience component essential for ‘application of theory’ throughout the training period.

The credits within the program are transferable to the University of Arizona and Arizona State University. These credits can also be applied to an Associates of Arts and Science degree at AWC.

For interested students call Christina Hawkey, Professor, Family & Consumer Sciences, at (928) 317-6421. 

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 Shamblin Named Head Softball Coach


Angel Shamblin

Arizona Western College is proud to announce that they have officially named Angel Shamblin as Matadors’ Head Softball Coach, removing the ‘interim’ from her title. Shamblin-who has served as the interim head coach of the program since last August-becomes the seventh head coach in the program’s 32-year history. The announcement was made during pre-game introductions of the Lady Matadors’ doubleheader with Pima Community College at the AWC Softball Field this afternoon.

Shamblin has done nothing but impress those around her since arriving in Yuma just 2 days before the start of AWC’s 2007-08 academic year in August. Shamblin arrived after the recruiting season for the upcoming softball season had just about come to an end, but that didn’t stop the former Chico State assistant from shoring up her team with fresh faces. Shamblin was able to increase the roster number to 16 players-including bringing in three players before the start of the spring semester-by the start of the Matadors’ 2008 season January 31st. Shamblin has taken the mix of old and new players and continued the Matadors’ winning tradition, getting them off to their best start since 2005. Currently, the Matadors sport a 22-12-1 overall mark, and hold a 12-6 record in ACCAC play and are in the heart of the playoff race with 14 games left to play. “We’ve been nothing but pleased about the direction that Angel has taken this program,” remarked AWC Athletic Director Jerry Smith. “She hit the ground running from the moment she arrived, and has the kids moving in a positive direction-both on and off the field. We’re very pleased that Angel will be a part of this program for years to come.”


Coach Shamblin with AWC Softball players

Born in Truckee, California and raised in Chico, Shamblin was a star second baseman at Las Plumas High School, receiving All-Eastern Athletic League honors in two straight years, and earning Best Offensive Player and Golden Glove Awards in the process. Shamblin then stayed home for her first two years of college, starting at shortstop for two years for the Lady Roadrunners of Butte College in nearby Oroville, and earning Honorable Mention All-Golden Valley Conference honors. She then moved on to NCAA Division II BYU-Hawaii, changing positions but still starting both seasons in the Lady Seasiders’ outfield. After returning to the mainland to earn her Bachelor’s (and later, her Master’s) in Physical Education from Cal-State Chico, Shamblin immediately delved into coaching at Chico’s Pleasant Valley High School. She spent six years on the coaching staff at PVHS: two as a varsity assistant coach, two as the junior varsity head coach, and then her last two as the varsity head coach. As the head coach, Shamblin took the Lady Vikings to the CIF-Northern Section D2 Championship both years, going 64-9-1 over the two seasons, and losing only once in 28 home games over that same stretch. That success gave Shamblin a chance to move up to the college coaching ranks for the first time last year as the lone assistant coach for her alma mater, Cal-State University Chico. Shamblin helped Chico State’s first-year head coach, Jamie Brown, resurrect a program in one of the toughest NCAA Division II softball conferences in the country before coming to Yuma.

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 Colorado Crossing


Colorado Crossing Literary Magazine looking for submissions for the upcoming publication.

Do you have poems, essays, short stories, drawings, or creative non-fiction pieces that you want published in AWC’s Literary Magazine, Colorado Crossings? Please send your work electronically as an attached Word document or JPEG file to with the subject heading: Literary Magazine Submission By May 1, 2008 For questions and inquiries contact : Porchia Moore, Director Creative Writing School Telephone: 928-344-7687 All students, faculty, and staff are welcome to submit.

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 Health Fair


Diana Ortiz, Massage Therapy Student

The 2008 Health Service "Health Fair " offered over 40 booths including free lung capacity tests, cholesterol screening, blood pressure monitoring, vision tests, body fat analysis, and diabetic education.  The annual fair was open to all students, faculty and emplloyees.

The Health Fair was held in and around the LR building on Wednesday, March 26th.





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Annual Egg Hunt


CDLL Students Head For the Eggs

Arizona Western College and the Yuma Partners Optimist Club held their Annual Easter Egg Hunt on Thursday, March 20th!

Every year around Easter, the Yuma Partners Optimist Club hops around the big grassy area by the AWC fountain, leaving plastic eggs...then, the kids from AWC's Child Development Learning Lab scramble to gather as many eggs as they can in their cute homemade baskets, dashing around and grabbing as fast as they can!

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