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October 5, 2009


Peggy Cartwright
Director of Marketing and Public Relations

For Immediate Release


(Chino, CA) On Saturday, October 3, 2009 nine women at the California Institution for Women (CIW) earned Associate Degrees from Chaffey College. The graduation took place at CIW in Chino in front of 200 people some of whom were the guests of the graduates. These women are the second graduating class of the Chaffey College CIW program. The first graduating class consisted of 13 women who completed the program in March 2008.

The Chaffey College CIW program began in 2005 through the vision of Warden Dawn Davison, Chaffey College faculty Christine Flores, and administrators Laura Hope and Sherrie Guerrero. “This program has gone through its challenges, but persevered,” said Laura Hope, interim dean of instructional support. “The winners are the students.”

The graduation ceremony was held in the gymnasium at the CIW. Dr. Henry Shannon, superintendent/president’s keynote address was titled “Planting the seed of success.” He congratulated the graduates on their success; each of them earned a 3.3 to 4.0 GPA. “The fate of the future is in your hands,” he quoted. “Your have become role models and it’s your responsibility to change the cycle and help future generations,” said Dr. Shannon.

Ronda Gray is the class valedictorian. In her remarks she thanked Chaffey College for “believing in us.” “As a 30-year heroine addict, I needed a change,” said Gray. “Thank you for a life changing experience, you have given us hope.” Gray’s dream is to become a counselor and Chaffey was essential to her transformation. She is scheduled to be released next December.

The graduating class included nine women, four of whom will be paroled within the next year. One of the graduates earned her degree on Saturday and was being released on Monday. The purpose of the program is to educate individuals who have the opportunity for parole.

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