WENATCHEE - Two years after construction began, Wenatchee Valley College (WVC) celebrated the naming of the new Wells Hall replacement building Tuesday (Sept. 14) with a grand opening and blessing ceremony. Wing five of the former hall, which houses the ceramic studio and CAMP, will retain the Wells Hall name.
The new building is named Mish ee twie, after the Yakama name of Gloria L. Atkins. It is pronounced, “Mish ee twy” – rhyming with “try.” The WVC Board of Trustees chose the name at their June board meeting after collaboration and discussion with the Colville Confederated Tribes.
Many members of the Colville Confederated Tribes and of Gloria’s family were in attendance. There was a blessing ceremony given by Gloria’s three children and former husband, and statements made by Representative Mike Steele, ASWVC president Mason Renslow, and Tribal Chairman Andrew Joseph and Councilwoman Karen Condon.
Turn out to the grand opening was excellent. Over 130 community members attended – including many WVC employees and students. Small tours were offered of the building, which is nearing completion.
This building memorializes Mish ee twie, who was a passionate advocate for higher education and a respected tribal elder and Wenatchi Advisory Board founding member. The building itself provides a clean, safe, state-of-the-art environment for our students to study, learn and gather. It will also provide many programs and instructors with spaces to work and meet with students. This is a huge win for our students, employees and members of the public who will use the conference center.
This building could not have been built without the support of the community and the efforts of the WVC Foundation. I also want to thank the WVC Foundation, public information office (PIO), Maria Iniguez, IT and facilities for making the grand opening a success. An outdoor, in-person gathering of this size requires a lot of work to be held safely and successfully, and these teams went above and beyond to make this ceremony memorable.
I hope you will all be able to visit and enjoy the building this fall, and I hope you will keep Mish ee twie and her lifetime of accomplishments in mind as you do.