SVC News & Event Center

Author Archives: Arden Ainley

About Arden Ainley

The Skagit Valley College Public Information Office takes the lead in the planning and production of external communications for SVC, helping to coordinate the official voice of the college. These activities include institutional print and electronic publications, promotional materials, ad campaigns, social media, as well as interactions with the news media. Our core projects include enrollment marketing promotional and informational pieces for the the College district for Academic Pathways, Professional/Technical Programs, Basic Education for Adults, and Enrollment Services.

Arden Ainley

Diversity Conference: Education, Solidarity, and Strength

Screen Shot 2016-08-03 at 4.35.08 PMThis year’s theme is, Education, Solidarity, and Strength. The conference mission is to promote empowerment, multicultural and social justice awareness, educational equity and appreciation for diversity.

This event consists of a series of workshops and sessions focused on identity development, social justice and activism, and personal development. 

Who is invited?  high school students, college students, staff and faculty
Where:  SVC Mount Vernon Campus
When:  Friday, September 30, 2016
Time:  8:30am-3:30pm

Space is limited and an RSVP link will be sent the first week of September to save your seat! 

If you are interested in being a presenter, we encourage you to submit a proposal!
Topics of interest include but are not limited to the following:

  • Identity Development
  • Intersectional Identities
  • Indigenous Knowledge
  • Race and Racialization
  • Social Justice and Activism
  • Dreamer’s
  • Best Practices for Diversity Inclusion
  • College Access

 Presenters may submit proposals for a 65 minute session in one of the following formats:

  • Roundtable
  • Individual or panel presentation
  • Interactive workshop
  • Dialogue process
  • Creative presentation/discussion

Proposals must be submitted no later than Friday, August 19th by email submission to

For more information:

#skagitvalleycollege   #svcmulticulturalstudentservices

New generation of learners exploring at SVC

Photo Jul 25, 10 12 50 AM

During the month of July, SVC hosted approximately 200 young learners and teachers at the Mount Vernon Campus. Each day, the kids happily engage in learning activities through the Foundation for Academic Endeavors Summer Academy.  This week, the kids were mesmerized by a presentation about science and nature by Scott Peterson, (aka, The Reptile Man). Plenty of squeals and giggles!

And, the front page story of July 25th edition of the Skagit Valley Herald published an article about SVC’s partnership with FAE:



Kids’ College photographers highlight “Milo”

Total cuten1 Kids' College graphicess overload! Check out these photography class pics taken by some of SVC’s very own Kids’ College students. Meet their little canine friend, Milo! Very impressive! Looking for great activities for your kids this summer?

Say hello to Milo 


SVC Alums included in WWU’s list of Outstanding Graduates!

Danara King

Kana Sorimachi


Two SVC alums, Danara King and Kana Sorimachi, were recently included in Western Washington University’s list of Outstanding Graduates. Congratulations!
GO Cardinals!

Skagit Valley College’s Bachelor of Applied Science in Environmental Conservation: First class of students graduated June 16th at SVC’s Mount Vernon Campus

MOUNT VERNON, Wash. — For 11 Skagit Valley College (SVC) students, graduation this year marks the end of an exciting journey and a stepping stone toward their green career.DSC_0007

On June 16th, these 11 students graduated with their Bachelor of Applied Science in Environmental Conservation (BASEC) from SVC. They represent the initial class of students to earn SVC’s first bachelor’s degree.

“This first class of graduates is making history,” said SVC President Dr. Tom Keegan. “They have set the bar high and they represent the College’s commitment to serving the workforce needs of our community and region.”

Skagit’s BAS degree addresses strong community interest in preserving the environment.
It is guided by two of the College’s strategic priorities: environmental stewardship, which seeks
to promote sound and sustainable environmental stewardship throughout the curriculum, college and community activities, and institutional practices; and aligning educational programs with regional and state economic development strategies.

“Skagit, Island, and San Juan counties provide an incredible natural learning environment,”
said Department Chair Dr. Claus Svendsen. “Our graduates have trained to become highly skilled ecology professionals with a solid understanding of the environmental issues facing our region.”

Since no other baccalaureate in ecology and natural resources is offered in Skagit, Island, and San Juan counties, SVC’s degree increases training opportunities for those seeking a green career.

In addition to classroom and lab learning, SVC’s BASEC students embarked on a number of field trips. They included trips to the North Cascades to explore fire regimes and trips looking at local wetlands, fens, rivers, and estuaries.  On each field trip, students took samples using methods within the guidelines for the Department of Ecology. In addition, they made an overnight trip to Lake Crescent for Advanced Limnology (lake science) along with field trips to other local lakes. The lakes are comprised of three different “lake habitats” and their corresponding trophic states, assessing lake nutrients. On these trips, the students gathered samples and ran water chemistry tests to look at the types of zooplankton and phytoplankton (microscopic plants and animals) living in the lake. From those tests, the students determined how much food supply was available in the lake and estimate the number of fish and other aquatic creatures that each system can support.

BASEC course content includes: statistics, forest ecology, advanced wetlands, estuarine and nearshore ecology, data management, professional communications, environmental chemistry, advanced scientific writing, and a capstone project.

Capstone projects are designed from start (project proposal) to finish (presentation to public or private entity). This year’s final projects included a leaf litter decomposition study that identified nitrogen content, an assessment at elk populations and hunting, investigating local amphibian population and survivorship, as well as the study of honey bees.

SVC’s lab is in the final stages of being accredited through the Department of Ecology for water sampling, with additional accreditation expected later this year. This accreditation sets the standard for all students in our lab, methods, hold times, and equipment used are real world and very strict. For SVC’s graduates, it means their prospective employers they are prepared to work in such a lab.

Of this year’s BASEC graduating class, all of began in SVC’s Environmental Conservation program and four of them were hired into jobs before graduating. The 2016 graduates are:

  • Joseph Shea: Sedro-Woolley
  • Joseph McConnaughy: Darrington
  • Dawn Kadolph: Oak Harbor
  • Raylene Levi: Stanwood
  • Ryan Hayden: Arlington
  • Rob Cogdal: Sedro-Woolley
  • James Morgareidge: Concrete
  • Heidi Nichols: Mount Vernon
  • Jason Quigley: Mount Vernon
  • Eva Swain: Sedro-Woolley
  • Christie Turner: Sedro-Woolley