Pierce College Honorary Degree Recipients

Established in 2015, the Pierce College Honorary Associate in Arts (A.A.) is awarded to individuals who have made enduring, significant and noteworthy contributions to our community in one of these areas:

  • Educational Service
  • Humanitarian Service
  • Servant Leadership
  • Personal and Professional Accomplishments
  • Entrepreneurial Leadership

The Pierce College Board of Trustees awards the honorary degree based on a recommendation from the Pierce College Federation of Teachers President, the Presidents and the Chancellor.

Honorary degree procedure and nomination form >

2018 Award

Grace Koopmans

Retired Educator and Founder of Pierce College’s Early Childhood Education (ECE) Program

Koopmans began her career at Pierce College in 1969, with the goal of building an Early Childhood Education (ECE) program from the ground up. This pioneering program started as a department of one, with Mrs. Koopmans developing curriculum, planning and teaching courses, recruiting students and building a strong foundation for the future.   

Today, the college’s renowned ECE program continues to provide comprehensive and compassionate training on the physical, emotional, intellectual and social needs of children. Thanks to Koopman’s vision, Pierce College helps meet a critical need in our community for highly qualified early childhood education professionals.

Read the full story in our news archive >

2015 Award

Jerry Korum

Owner, Korum Automotive Group

Korum leads a highly successful, entrepreneurial business, Korum Automotive Group, which has earned numerous accolades for its outstanding commitment to community service. For more than 20 years, Korum has worked with students in the PierceWorks program for displaced and unemployed workers. He also contributed significant time and funds to the 2002 Pierce College Child Development Center Capital Campaign and has supported countless students as a significant donor to the Pierce College Foundation.

Throughout the community, he is well known for his generosity, kindness and willingness to help others through numerous organizations.

Read the full story in our news archive >