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Category Archives: Community

Small Business Management celebrates success

By Chemeketa Public Affairs

Small Business ManagementThe Peytons were the first to address the audience. The wife-husband team who run Personalized Independence, a corporation that serves adults who are intellectually delayed or developmentally disabled, are part of this year’s class in Chemeketa’s Small Business Management program. Jennie Peyton appreciated the opportunity for perspective, “This program gave us a time and place to think about the business not just do it.”

Marcia Bagnall, director of Chemeketa’s Small Business Development Center summarized results from this year’s program –

  • 76 business owners and key staff participated from 57 businesses located in 11 cities
  • Participants had 500 years of cumulative business experience
  • Their collective gross revenue the year prior to the program was $41.7 million (2013)
  • Their collective gross revenue the year they participated in the program was $46.3 million (2014)
    • The $4.6 million of additional revenue represents an 11% increase from the prior year
  • Employment at the participating businesses increased from 452 to 482 employees in the same timeframe

Chemeketa planning 50-year reunion for fire program

By Chemeketa Public Affairs

Fire program reunionChemeketa Community College has been educating firefighters since 1965, and graduates of the program serve in fire departments throughout Oregon.  Former students, graduates family members and anyone else associated with the program are invited to attend a three-day celebration scheduled for September 11-13.

The festivities begin with a Friday evening wine and beer tasting at the Chemeketa Eola Northwest Wine Studies Center. Saturday’s fun will include a golf tournament at the Santiam Golf Club, a motorcycle poker run and a barbecue. Sunday will conclude with an open house at the Chemeketa Brooks Regional Training Center.

All proceeds from the reunion will support emergency service scholarships at Chemeketa. Registration and additional information can be found at or on Facebook at Chemeketa Emergency Services 50th Anniversary Weekend.

Event information details

Design collaborations benefit nonprofits and students

By Chemeketa Public Affairs

While the classroom is a prime place to learn the tools of a trade, it’s the hands-on projects that give our Visual Communications students important hands-on experience working with clients, meeting deadlines and budgeting.

Each year, Chemeketa’s Visual Communications students work with local nonprofits to produce materials. Some of this year’s clients included–

  • Marion-Polk Food Share
  • McMinnville Short Film Festival
  • Open Food Source software
  • Salem Audubon Society logo
  • 4Him2Day Children’s Cancer Research Foundation
  • Chemeketa Community College programs including Chemeketa Press, Chemeketa Reads, Chemeketa Writes, Soapbox Poetry, Sustainability and developing a school mascot.

The newly renovated Visual Communcations studio space helps propel the student/client experience to another level. Private meeting and presentation rooms and modern facilities encourage collaboration while Mac labs, personal lockers and larger work spaces helps students excel at their craft.

“I really like the functional photo lab,” says Rowan Wright who graduates this year with his AAS in Graphic Design. “The facilities are less crowded and more accessible, allowing students to work independently.”

Originally from Victoria, British Columbia, Rowan plans to freelance in Salem and Portland while searching for a job in a medium-size firm. He credits the Visual Communications program for re-igniting his interest in the profession.

“I encourage anyone considering graphic design to go for it and give it your all. I didn’t think it was an accessible career, but this program trains you to get up to par,” Rowan says as he pauses to greet an admirer of his portfolio. “Now I feel ready.”

Visual Communications Portfolio Show June 4

By Chemeketa Public Affairs

All are welcome to join us for the Visual Communications Portfolio Show – an opportunity to view the culmination of projects created by talented emerging artists and designers graduating from Chemeketa’s Visual Communications program.

The Portfolio Show will be held Thursday, June 4 from 4 to 7 pm in Building 4, Room 2225. Free parking will be available during the event; guests can follow signs to park in the purple and yellow lots.

For more information call 503.399.5070.


2015 Graduation set for June 16

By Chemeketa Public Affairs

Chemeketa’s 58th annual graduation ceremony will be held at 6 pm, Tuesday, June 16 at the Oregon State Fairgrounds Pavilion (2330 17th Street NE, Salem). Free parking is available in the lot off Sunnyview Road near 17th Street NE. Tickets are required.

Nearly 800 students of post-secondary degree and certificate programs, Winema High School and high school equivalency and general equivalency programs will be awarded diplomas.

More information on the 2015 graduation can be found here or by calling 503.399.6588.

Art Student Annual May 13 – June 5

By Chemeketa Public Affairs

2015 Art Student AnnualWhile the Gretchen Schuette Art Gallery is normally a location showing the work of professional artists, there’s also a time each year where the students take over.

The 2015 Art Student Annual will be featured in the gallery from May 13 to June 5.

The exhibit is open to all students who have taken an art class at Chemeketa in the past two years. Students submit work to be featured in the show, which will be judged by a pool of respected artists from Marion, Polk and Yamhill counties.

A reception and awards ceremonies for the show will be held on May 13 from noon to 2 p.m. at the gallery.

The gallery is located on the ground floor of Building 3 on the Salem campus and is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Instructor Debbie Hornibrook is Keizer Iris Festival poster artist

By Chemeketa Public Affairs

“Purple Iris” by Debbie Hornibrook

For many, the ideal retirement is full of relaxation and leisure.

But Debbie Hornibrook, Chemeketa professor of communication and Renaissance woman personified, may have a more difficult time juggling her ambitious post-professional schedule. When she’s not teaching, taking her motorcycle for joyrides or raising ragdoll cats, she’s honing her artistic skills— taking advantage of every learning opportunity she can so one day she may live a life filled with travel and painting.

Like many things for Debbie, her strengths and passions were not born overnight but through years of persistence. Taking her first art lessons as a kid then again in the late ‘70s, Debbie was disappointed by the hands-off approach her early teachers took to art making. “They sat us down and told us to draw. That didn’t work for me.”

It wasn’t until 2005 when she started teaching at Chemeketa that her love affair with art was reignited. Since then, she’s taken advantage of our tuition benefits, completing courses in figure drawing, design, art history, painting and more.

“I’ve been amazed by our art faculty’s’ strong, guided instruction,” Debbie delights. “Come to find out, many of them had also been taught with the same hands-off methodologies popular in the ‘70s. They also didn’t like it and vowed to dedicate themselves to providing strong art instruction.”

Debbie has paid special attention to developing her watercolor skills, taking additional classes and workshops though downtown Salem’s Art Department and the artist guild Women of Watercolor.

This fall, her watercolor “Purple Iris” was juried into Watercolor Society of Oregon’s exhibition in Medford, and the Keizer Art Association has selected it as the 2015 poster artwork for the Keizer Iris Festival.

“I felt blessed and delighted! I just love flowers and we have such beautiful gardens in our community. It is such an honor to have one of my paintings chosen to represent the Keizer Iris Festival.”

Debbie’s words of advice for other aspiring artists? “Learn all you can. Take advantage of the classes here at Chemeketa and in the community and get connected to instructors and artist groups for guidance and support.”

Public Safety Fair is May 13

By Chemeketa Public Affairs

On Wednesday, May 13, dozens of first responders, search and rescue and special unit personnel will descend upon the Salem campus quad for the third annual Public Safety & Job fair.



The Public Safety & Job fair will feature—

  • Volunteer and job opportunities
  • Educational information
  • Patrol vehicles, fire apparatus and medical units
  • Special units, including K9, boat patrol/rescue, aerial ladder, posse
  • Information on search and rescue, emergency preparedness, and first responders

Parking is free to all guests and a BBQ lunch will be available for purchase.

Public Safety & Job Fair
Wednesday, May 13, 10 am-2pm
Salem campus quads

For more information contact Chris Cooper or Kelly Pointer at 503.399.5023 or e-mail

Center for Business & Industry offering writing workshops

By Chemeketa Public Affairs

Chemeketa writing workshopsWords are in our e-mails that come and go like waves. Words are in our text messages and voluminous reports, our bullet-pointed PowerPoints and our 140 character tweets. Words are so prevalent you might think they are cheap.

The Chemeketa Center for Business & Industry asks you to consider the cost of being misunderstood.

Eric Witchey is a writing instructor for the Customized Training department of CCBI. To emphasize the value of his work, Witchey points to examples like –

  • Unclear e-mails creating a whirlpool of wasted time
  • The risk of litigation if poorly written instructions lead to mistakes

“My work reduces losses,” says Witchey.

Kirstin Madigan, senior human resources analyst for the City of Salem, hired CCBI because she was concerned about the loss of trust. Madigan conveys the resignation of a stickler weary with a world that doesn’t care enough about getting it right. “We couldn’t even be consistent in whether we capitalized ‘city’ in the same document. It just made us look like we didn’t know what we were doing,” Madigan said. The City of Salem has put over 100 employees through the CCBI writing workshops.

Witchey isn’t the writing teacher many of us had in middle school. “I don’t focus on grammar. We didn’t learn it in 9th grade and we’re not going to learn it now. I focus on writing patterns that tend to produce success. Businesses don’t care about theory. They care if their people get the skills.”

Evaluation comments from participants in a class for SAIF Corporation employees suggest Witchey’s approach works. “I especially appreciate the tips for organizing my thoughts before I begin to write,” reported one participant.

SAIF provides worker’s compensation insurance for Oregon. Tami Gagnon, training and development manager, says much of their writing is input into forms but when they have to write free-form to doctors, they sometimes struggle with clarity. “We want to understand the precise prognosis for recovery so we can help workers get back on the job.  CCBI’s training helped us improve and we will use them again.”

For more information about writing instruction and other types of customized training, e-mail the Chemeketa Center for Business & Industry or call 503.399.5181.


Renee Couture featured in gallery March 31-May 5

By Chemeketa Public Affairs

Renee Couture in art gallery

“When They Fall, They Always Make Noise”, a exhibit featuring the works of southern Oregon artist Renee Couture, will be on display at Chemeketa Community College’s Gretchen Schuette Art Gallery from March 31 to May 5.

An artist’s reception will be held on April 8 from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m., with an artist’s talk at 1:30 p.m.

Couture, who is a fine arts instructor at Umpqua Communtiy College in Roseburg, mixes sculpture, photography and installation in her pieces, examining the interconnectivity of capitalism, environment and one’s community.

“Using my own rural community as a starting point, I articulate the complexity and range of the public with their nearby landscape,” Couture said in her artist’s statement.

Couture received her bachelor’s from Buena Vista University in Iowa and her master’s from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Before moving to Oregon, she spent four years working throughout North and South America in various jobs including a camp counselor, wildland firefighter and artisan goat cheese maker. She uses a converted 20-foot travel trailer in her garden as a studio.

The gallery is located in Building 3 on the Salem campus and is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday when classes are in session.

Contact the gallery at 503.399.2533 for more information.