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alumni In the news

Columbia College alumni do great things for their communities.
To submit an alumni update, email ccalum@ccis.edu.

  • As a teen mom, Tracy Beegen '06 never would have imagined that she would receive a doctorate in clinical psychology. Now at 37, that unknown dream is becoming a reality. Read more.

  • Can a single moment change your life? Columbia College's new advertising campaign features the life-changing moments when people decide it's time for a college degree. Read more.
  • Mitch Gosney '13 has been named an athletics marketing associate at Middle Tennessee State University. A member of the Columbia College Alumni Association Board of Directors, Mitch received his bachelor's degree from main campus in 2013 and a master's degree in higher education administration from the University of Missouri-Kansas City in 2015.

  • Raised in a political family, Missouri native Chloe Pickle '07 is at home on Capitol Hill. She completed her Columbia College degree through correspondence courses so she could move to Washington to work for Sen. Kit Bond of Missouri. Pickle now serves as administrative director for Sen. James Lankford of Oklahoma. Read more.

  • Joe Waner '13 wrote his debut blog for Inside Columbia magazine where he works as a graphic designer in Columbia, Missouri. Joe found inspiration in his mother's influence and an old cookbook. Find out how he fared in the kitchen with his first recipe: old fashioned doughnuts.
  • The Schauer Arts and Activities Center appointed Joseph Konrad '03 as Executive Director. Konrad will oversee the overall operations and management of the center. Read more.

  • Ted Fafinski '79 received the New York State Senate Liberty Medal, the highest civilian honor that can be bestowed upon an individual by the Senate. The award acknowledged Fafinski's 25 years in government and the completion of numerous town projects in Farmington, New York. Read more.
  • Columbia College soccer alumnus Don Trengtham '99 has been named associate coach for the University of Missouri-Columbia women's soccer team. Read more.
  • Andria Caruthers '10 has been selected as the 2015 Smith-Patterson Fellow by the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism. Caruthers received dual master's degrees in journalism and public health in May before joining the Health Communication Research Center in June. Her work will including developing and writing science and health communication stories and products. Read more.

  • With a passion for music, marketing and the entertainment industry, Anise White '13 has taken her degree from Columbia College to New York and Los Angeles. Read more.
  • Brothers Jonathan Jarboe '15 and Brett Moore '15 took very different paths that led to graduating together. Jarboe, who is 10 years Moore's senior, even cut his brother's ivy chain as the pair took part in the college's honored Ivy Chain Ceremony. Read more.
  • Columbia College employees recognized Joe Brown '15 and his service dog, Z, in a special presentation during the May 2015 commencement ceremony. Read more.

  • Walking across the staff to accept her bachelor's degree at age 77, Laurel Dale '15 proves education has no age limit. Read more.

  • Graduating with a bachelor's degree in criminal justice and her crime scene investigation certificate, Annalise Morrison '15 is ready to start her career with the FBI. Read more.

  • Nora Renteria '05 published her first piece in an inspirational book titled "Today's Inspired Latina: Life Stories of Success in the Face of Adversity." Her chapter of the book focuses on the vitality of receiving an education, regardless of what obstacles may be in the way. Read more.

  • With the help of the Three Wishes for Her Foundation, Columbia College surprised Heather Frayer '15 with a special commencement ceremony in Memphis, Tennessee. The foundation provides support to female caregivers of critically ill children. Heather's dream was for her three children to witness her graduate. With her 10-year-old son battling bone cancer, this dream was special. Read more.

  • Tom Stroup '04 created a #PWRCollegeChallenge workout video when visiting main campus in April. Stroup is the 2015 recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award.

  • Sgt. 1st Class Carmela Brown-Nelson completes an online associate's degree during two deployments to Iraq. Read more.

  • Penny Hamilton '76 was honored by the University of Nebraska with an Alumni Achievement Award at a spring banquet. A two-time graduate of UNL, Penny's 40+ years work experience includes university teaching, leading business and conference workshops and print/broadcast media. Penny is also a private pilot and aviation instructor, and co-holds with her husband, Bill, a World Aviation Speed Record.

  • A memorial service was held for prominent alumnae Allean Lemmon Hale '33. She was 100. Hale wrote and published the college's centennial history "Petticoat Pioneer," served as the CCAA director from 1968-1977 and was named Distinguished Alumna in 1964. She leaves a lasting legacy and will be greatly missed. Read more.

  • In her writing debut, Nora Renteria '05 contributed to a new book of inspirational true stories, "Today's Inspired Latina: Life Stories of Success in the Face of Adversity." Her chapter focuses on the vitality of receiving an education, regardless of what obstacles may be in the way. Renteria and her fellow authors will host a book launch on May 21 in Rolling Meadows, Illinois. Read more.

  • In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week, learn how you can impact a future teacher by donating to the SMSTA Scholarship.

  • The Boone County Historical Society announced its inductees for the 2015 Boone County Hall of Fame. Jane Froman, a 1926 graduate of Christian College, will be honored with a posthumous recognition at the October ceremony. Froman was a hugely popular singer and star of stage, radio and television from the 1930s and 1950s. The 1952 film With a Song in My Heart is based on her life. Read more.

  • Shawn Burch, a 2014 graduate of Columbia College-Jefferson City, served eight years in the U.S. Army, a proud continuation of a family legacy of military service that dates back to the Revolutionary War. "My time in the Army became an experience that has really given me that definite purpose ... that focus on knowing what I need to accomplish." Read more.

  • State Rep. Avery Bourne '14 brings a fresh perspective to the Illinois House of Representatives. At 22 years old, Bourne is the youngest member of the General Assembly in history. "We're really looking forward to having a representative who is open-minded. Avery does not have an agenda." -Christian County GOP Chairman Seth McMillan Read more.

  • St. Louis artist Doug Weaver '11 catalogs his experiences as a Peace Corps volunteer in Rwanda in a series of 27 paintings. Read more.

  • Robert Harrison Sr., who received his bachelor's in criminal justice in 1999 and his master's degree in the same in 2001 through the Evening Campus program, was awarded the Columbia Values Diversity Award at the 22nd annual celebration event Jan. 15 in Columbia, Missouri. Harrison has worked with Reality House Programs, a community corrections treatment center since 2003 and became the client services director in 2012. Read more.

  • In a special ceremony aboard the Queen Mary in Long Beach, California, on Jan. 9, three Los Alamitos police officers received their Columbia College bachelor degree diplomas and honor cords, presented by President Scott Dalrymple, Los Alamitos Police Chief Todd Mattern and Los Alamitos Campus Director Carl David. With the graduation of these three officers, all 21 members of the Los Alamitos PD are now college-educated. The ceremony took place during an alumni networking social hosted by the CCAA. Read more.

  • Bosnian native Sanela Veledar-Hamzic '09 reflects upon her time in Columbia, Missouri, in a heartfelt letter to the editor of the Columbia Daily Tribune. Veledar-Hamzic and her husband immigrated to escape the violence in Bosnia. They made their way to Columbia and started a family. Completing coursework at Columbia College allowed her to advance in her work as a programmer at MBS Textbook Exchanage, Inc. Though the family returned to Bosnia in 2009, Veledar-Hamzic reflects upon how her life is forever changed by her experiences. Read more.

  • Dr. Tonia Compton '99, assistant professor of History and CCAA board member, will participate in the 2015 Greater Missouri Leadership Challenge. Participation in the year-long program is by invitation only, and is an opportunity for professionals across the state to develop their leadership skills, network and learn how to influence and solve issues facing Missouri. Read more.

  • Penny Hamilton '76 won a national pet photo contest sponsored by Plexidor Pet Doors with this picture of her dog, Prince. The 1,000-pound Black Gold dog food prize was donated to Hamilton's local animal shelter and dog food bank in rural Colorado. Hamilton is also a founding member of her community's local animal adoption group, Grand County Pet Pals. Way to go, Penny and Prince!

  • An alumna of Columbia College-Freeport penned a column on lifelong learning. Harriett Gustason '04 has been writing historical “Looking Back” columns for the Journal Standard in Freeport, Illinois, for more than 30 years. In 2009, the mayor even named April 23 as Harriett Gustason DayIn this column, she wrote about the 10th anniversary of the summer she received her bachelor’s degree.

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