Associate in Arts
Chris Sutphen was born in the Yakima Valley. He attended Oakridge Montessori School until eighth grade and then enrolled in high school classes online. During this time he was able to attend Yakima Valley Technical Skills Center and became interested in aviation. He graduated with a 4.0 GPA. He began working with a Yakima pilot gaining experience through projects at the hanger but ultimately decided to return to school. Chris choose YVCC. “I wanted to save money for a four-year college and wanted to help my family on our farm,” stated Sutphen. This past summer Sutphen was one of 6 students who participated in research projects through a science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) grant with Heritage University. He, along with fellow chemistry students, worked on a project for John I. Haas. “I chose to participate in the summer research project because I thought it sounded interesting, and would give me insight into performing research,” he continued.
The focus of research project was to improve the efficiency of separation and analysis of various alpha and beta acids that are extracted from hop cones. These compounds are the valued components of hops that render the bitter flavor to beer. The concentration of these molecules are the most important gauge of quality and pricing of hops and its products. “I liked that the research we were performing was real world industry research with direct applications in the local community. I would recommend YVCC to others. It is an economical way to obtain college credit, but eve more importantly students receive a quality education,” he concluded. After transferring from YVCC, Chris hopes to attend Embry Riddle Aeronautical University. His dream is to graduate with a degree in aeronautical engineering and to work as a research or design engineer for Lockheed Martin’s Skunk Works, or The Boeing Company’s Phantom Works division.
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