Upper Columbia Academy

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Upper Columbia Academy
3025 E Spangle Waverly Road
Spangle, Washington 99031
United States
Type Private, College-prep, Day and boarding
Motto "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth"
(3 John 4)
Denomination Seventh-day Adventist
Established 1921
Principal John Winslow
Grades 912
Gender Coeducational
Enrollment 272
Campus Rural
Color(s) Black Black and PMS115 Gold
Mascot Lion

Upper Columbia Academy (UCA) is a 9-12 boarding high school located in Spangle, Washington, about 20 miles (32 km) south of Spokane. It is owned and operated by the Seventh-day Adventist Church. It is a part of the Seventh-day Adventist education system, the world's second largest Christian school system.[1][2][3][4]


Upper Columbia Academy was originally established in 1921 as Yakima Valley Academy. That original school closed due to lack of space and physical plant problems - walls were held together by metal cables mounted on both sides of the rooms. The school had to find a bigger place and Pastor Mote was empowered by the church leadership to spend no more than $100,000 for a school. Pastor Mote came to the auction for the old poor farm in Spangle, but the minimum opening bid was over his limit. He told the auctioneer that he couldn't bid, so minimum opening bid was lowered to $100,000. Pastor Mote's was the only bid and the property was purchased, along with 15 hogs that they sold for $1500 to provide operating capital for the first year of school.[citation needed]


Upper Columbia Academy graduated 82 seniors at the end of the 2005-2006 school year. About 275 students attended UCA in 2005-2006. During this notable school year, UCA won the prestigious Academy Award of Excellence for being the top high school in the United States out of some 100 full-program Adventist high schools (citation: http://www.alumniawards.com/awards-grants/academy-awards). The current enrollment (2009–10) is 265 with a senior class of about 90.

Spiritual aspects[edit]

All students take religion classes each year that they are enrolled. These classes cover topics in biblical history and Christian and denominational doctrines. Instructors in other disciplines also begin each class period with prayer or a short devotional thought, many which encourage student input. Weekly, the entire student body gathers together in the auditorium for an hour-long chapel service. Outside the classrooms there is year-round spiritually oriented programming that relies on student involvement.

Student life[edit]

Students at UCA have jobs, attend classes, and participate in community service. Elective classes from CAD to metalworking to desktop publishing are available, as well as extracurricular activities—snow skiing in winter, camping, town trips, banquets, drama club, science club, etc.

External Support[edit]

Upper Columbia Academy is owned and operated by the Upper Columbia Conference of Seventh-day Adventists.

Students who attend UCA have access to scholarships from the UCA Foundation a 501(c)3 non-profit organization founded for the benefit of providing financial support to students.


  • The State of Washington
  • The Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges
  • Accrediting Association of Seventh-day Adventist Schools, Colleges, and Universities, Inc.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ http://www.csmonitor.com/Commentary/Opinion/2010/1115/For-real-education-reform-take-a-cue-from-the-Adventists"the second largest Christian school system in the world has been steadily outperforming the national average – across all demographics."
  2. ^ http://www.religionfacts.com/christianity/denominations/seventh_day_adventist.htm
  3. ^ "Department of Education, Seventh-day Adventist Church". Retrieved 2010-06-18. 
  4. ^ Rogers, Wendi; Kellner, Mark A. (April 1, 2003). "World Church: A Closer Look at Higher Education". Adventist News Network. Retrieved 2010-06-19. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 47°24′48″N 117°22′03″W / 47.413336°N 117.367576°W / 47.413336; -117.367576