The Pitzer College/WesternU Native American Summer Pipeline to College program will celebrate the graduation of its 19 students at 2 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 10, 2014 at Wishtoyo’s Chumash Discovery Village in Malibu, California.

Native American students, entering grades 9-11, spent an intense two weeks filled with outdoor activities and classroom learning. They are returning today from a three-day trip to Santa Cruz Island, where they counted wildlife around the island while kayaking, and snorkeled around the California kelp beds to better understand that ecosystem.

The pipeline program is designed to motivate students to complete high school, promote leadership, and strengthen their self-esteem and academic preparation for college, along with their connection to traditional knowledge and culture.

This year’s academic focus was science and the environment. Western University of Health Sciences contributions included presentations on cell biology of environmental toxins by the College of Pharmacy, veterinary toxicology by the College of Veterinary Medicine, and anatomy, pathology and phlebotomy by the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific.