OCOM's June 27 Cherry Blossom Gala was a resounding success, bringing together 180 alumni, students, staff, faculty and community partners to the college’s campus for a unique “night market” experience. Contributions from our Lotus sponsors -- NW Natural, The CHP Group, The Oregonian/OregonLive.com, Elizabeth Wakeman Hendersen Charitable Foundation -- helped fill three floors with magic, music, a photobooth and spa treatments. Featuring tributes from trustees, family and academic leadership, this festive gathering was also a warm and joyful send-off for OCOM’s President, Dr. Michael Gaeta, who is retiring this month.

In addition to enjoying a great party, attendees helped the college raise $39,535 for OCOM and those it serves. Their support means more scholarship dollars for students on their way to becoming the nation’s most skilled practitioners; more low-cost treatments for people who couldn’t otherwise access OCOM’s clinics; and perhaps most importantly, these generous donations primed the college to move confidently into the future.

Presentations throughout the event highlighted the signature accomplishments of Dr. Gaeta’s 10 years as college president. Under Dr. Gaeta’s leadership, OCOM has enhanced students’ educational experiences, increased the number of patients served, and expanded its role in the Old Town Chinatown community:

  • More than $15 million was secured for the college’s LEED Gold certified Old Town Chinatown campus.
    • OCOM was twice ranked the best acupuncture school in the United States, in 2012 and again in 2015.
    • More than 100 doctoral and 1,300 master’s students are now graduates of OCOM and are practicing acupuncture and Chinese medicine in 42 states and five countries.
    • The college nearly doubled its full-time faculty.
    • OCOM’s clinics have expanded to provide 20,000-24,000 patient visits per year, many to low-income patients.

Thank you to all who were able to join us for this third annual fundraising event. Photos can be viewed on OCOM’s Facebook page or by following these links to the Panda-monium photobooth and event photo albums:  http://tinyurl.com/ougodxm and http://tinyurl.com/qehhye8. If you missed the fun this year, please save the date for next year’s event, to be held on April 16, 2016.