BMCC Honors retirees

Press Release Date: 




Blue Mountain Community College,

Date: June 4, 2010
Contact:  Karen L. Hill, Public Relations, 541-278-5933 or 541-379-2753





BMCC Honors Retirees


Blue Mountain Community College held its annual retirement and recognition event on Thursday, June 3, to honor retirees and employees with service to the college from five to 35 years.

BMCC associate vice-president Deborah Lee paid tribute to retiree Florene Van Donge who spent her 17 year career at BMCC Milton-Freewater teaching college preparatory classes like English as a Second Language and GED.

Van Donge received her associate’s degree at age 45 from Walla Walla Community College and her bachelor’s degree from Eastern Washington University a few years later. Those years influenced her teaching philosophy, "I totally understand not being a young, ordinary student, since I was never a traditional student," said Van Donge. "No matter your age or circumstances you can always push to your goals, because learning is a life time process. Learning does not end after we stop our formal schooling."

From those experiences she developed real compassion for adult learners. As a 2007-2008 BMCC Making a Difference recipient, Florene’s stellar teaching ability was recognized by her academic peers.