Perhaps the most lasting legacy from Standing Guard is the creation of the Japanese Garden between Weaver and Walker Hall. This garden is a remembrance and refuge in its quietude as well as a reminder to be vigilant in protecting the civil rights of all Americans. Local ceramic and bonsai artist, Hiroshi Matsuda working with a committee of college and community volunteers, designed the environmentally sensitive garden to reflect Japanese and American cultural influences. There is fencing, a rock garden, a stone bridge, dry waterfall, rock streambed and lanterns set among the native oaks and other plantings. One central feature is a prominent gate through which students will walk symbolizing their educational transition. The garden provides an appropriate and inspirational backdrop for graduation ceremonies. Hiroshi Matsuda is co-president of the local JACL with Ken Tokotomi who were on the planning committee for the garden. The Garden is now open to the public.
A ceremony was held at the Garden awarding honorary degrees to those Japanese Americans whose lives have, for more than 60 years, intertwined with Sierra College’s, whether as students, whose college careers were cut short by internment, or as teachers, whose stories of internment and service to the country have shown us the true meaning of courage and patriotism.
"The longest journey begins with a single step."