TOPPENISH - Heritage University held its 29th commencement exercise on Saturday, May 7, at 10 a.m. on the Toppenish campus. About 160 students participated in this year's ceremony, including undergraduate and graduate students from the Toppenish campus and from regional locations across the state.
Overall, 258 students earned their degrees at Heritage University this year.
Heritage alumna Krista Goudy-Sutterlict, Bachelor of Arts in Education, class of 2004, was honored with the Violet Lumley Rau Outstanding Alumni Award during the ceremony.
This award is given annually to an alumnus who represents the values of the university in his or her life and the community. Goudy-Sutterlict is a preschool teacher in the Toppenish School District and the first classroom teacher to serve on the National Indian Education Association board of directors.
Heritage University graduates included Sunnyside's Manuel Jimenez, who received his Licensed Practical Nurse certificate, Mabton's Rosario Ortega and Michelle Lee Tellez, both of whom received their Licensed Practical Nurse certificates, and Grandview's Anagracia Carrillo, who received an Associate of Arts in business degree.
Several students from Sunnyside received Bachelor degrees from Heritage University, including Elizabeth M. Almeida with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education; Candelario Alvarez Jr. with a Bachelor of Arts in interdisciplinary studies; Patricia Antonia Amaro with a Bachelor of Arts in middle level education; Maria Asucena Bobadilla with a Bachelor of Arts in psychology; Erik Perez Cabrera with a Bachelor of Arts in business administration; Yerania Espindola with a Bachelor of Arts in business administration; Rachel Fernandez with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education; Sherezade Guerrero with a Bachelor of Arts in business administration; Sofia Guevara with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education; Alma Maria Guillen with a Bachelor of Social Work; Suleima Yaniz Guzman with a Bachelor of Arts in business administration; Mercedes Maria Martineza with a Bachelor of Arts in business administration; Erica Christy Mendez with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education; Zandy Nunez with a Bachelor's of Social Work; Guadalupe Ochoa with a Bachelor of Arts in business administration; Anita Ramos with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education; and Danielle Lynn Watkins with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education.
Other students graduating with Bachelor's of Arts degrees included Grandview's Hidie G. Barrera in middle level education; Rosalinda Angela Benitez in interdisciplinary studies; Cheryl Theresa Borstad in elementary education; Anagracia Carrillo in business administration; Rhonda Kay Flett in business administration; and Guadalupe Lorenz in interdisciplinary studies. Viridiana E. Pasillas of Grandview earned a Bachelor's of Science in accounting.
Students who received their Bachelor's of Arts degrees from Outlook included Norma L. Jaimes in elementary education; Katherine J. Jolliff in middle level education; Judy Rene Miller in elementary education; Bethany Grayce Morris in elementary education; and Yolanda Rios in middle level education.
Aaron Scott Etherington of Granger received a Bachelor's of Science in biology from Heritage University, while Adrian Corona and Delores M. Perez of Mabton received their Bachelor's of Arts from the university. Corona received his in middle level education, while Perez earned hers in elementary education.
Meanwhile, Grandview's Emilia Gabriela Magna earned her Master's of education in counseling, as did Sunnyside's Amber June Grimmer and Maria D.J. Perez.
Issac Earl Spilles of Sunnyside earned a Master's in teaching in elementary education.