EmporiaNews.com will only have important/urgent updates. I have had a complication from surgery two weeks ago, and am on my way to emergency surgery again. I will resume full updates as quickly as possible.

Thank you for your understanding.

Current Weather Conditions

 
Seven Day Forecast for Emporia, Virginia
 

SVCC

Panther Prep Day for SVCC Is October 3, 2017

Plan now to attend Panther Prep Advising Day at various sites of Southside Virginia Community College on Tuesday, October 3, 2017.  This event is the perfect time to register for Spring 2018 classes, meet with advisors learn about the offerings at SVCC and just have some fun.  There will be music, food, giveaways, demonstrations, financial aid information, entertainment and more.  Get immersed in the culture of SVCC at this event.

Save the date and time, October 3, 2017 from 10 a.m. until 6 P.m.  This event will be held at six locations.  Christanna Campus in Alberta, John H. Daniel Campus in Keysville, Southern Virginia Higher Education Center in South Boston, Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center in South Hill, Southside Virginia Education Center in Empoiria and SVCC Occupational Technical Center in Blackstone.

For information, check out the SVCC Facebook or www.southside.edu

Daughters of the American Revolution Encourage Commemoration of Signing of US Constitution

Members of William Taylor Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution (Louise Ogburn of South Hill, Christie Hales of Lawrenceville, Mary Jane Elkins of South Hill and Nancy Turner of Kenbridge) encourage students at Southside Virginia Community College to join in commemorating the signing of the Constitution of the United States of America—September 17-23.  

The Transformative Power of Education

By Dr. Al Roberts

The Pew Research Center, a nonpartisan group that informs the public about issues, attitudes, and trends that shape the country and the world, examined the situation facing workers in the United States. The report summarizing their findings was titled “The State of American Jobs: How the shifting economic landscape is reshaping work and society and affecting the way people think about the skills and training they need to get ahead” (October 2016).

“The nature of jobs is changing,” the report noted. “Employment data shows that the job categories with the highest growth tend to require higher social skills, analytic savvy, and technical prowess.” The study’s survey of employed adults found that an overwhelming majority—87%—said getting training and developing new skills were either important or essential for staying abreast of changes in the workplace. The report stated, “Americans believe knowledge of computers, social dexterity, communications skills, and access to training are key to success for today’s workers.”

To address these concerns, Southside Virginia Community College maintains active partnerships with business and industry leaders throughout our service area. These collaborative efforts help ensure that curricula are up to date and aligned with current and future workers’ needs. One example is the recent launch of the Center for Information Technology Excellence (CITE) Lab located at the Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center in South Hill.

The CITE Lab was made possible through a grant from the Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission and developed under the guidance of local employers, including Microsoft. Microsoft’s cloud computing facility in Mecklenburg County is one of the largest in the world. The CITE Lab’s state-of-the-art equipment lets students learn in a situation that replicates the work environment of large data centers and prepares them to earn important CompTia industry credentials (A+, Server+, Network+, and Security+).

The rise of cloud computing, which involves collecting and storing data, is one of the driving forces behind technology-related employment growth. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment in computer and information technology occupations will grow faster than the average for all occupations. Furthermore, they report wages within the field are more than double the median wage for all occupations.

At SVCC, our mission is to give everyone an educational foundation that develops and extends their skills and knowledge. This enables students to embark upon or move along career paths in growing fields with family sustaining wages. We believe in the transformative power of education. We believe students can meet challenges and change their lives through learning, and we believe education can lead to individual prosperity and regional economic vitality. The responsibility to instruct scholars and train tomorrow’s workforce drives all our activities. For more information about how your education needs can be met, call 434-949-1000.

Dr. Al Roberts is president of Southside Virginia Community College, an institution of higher learning that provides a wide variety of education opportunities to a diverse student population within a service area that spans ten counties and the city of Emporia. He can be reached via email at al.roberts@southside.edu

August 24 2017 Graduates from SVCC Truck Driving Program

Southside Virginia Community College Truck Driver Training Graduates from the most recent Emporia class on August 24, 2017 along with college personnel are (Left to Right) Duncan Quicke, Truck Driving Program Coordinator, Dr. Al Roberts, SVCC President, Jimmy Edwards of Courtland, Douglas E. Cannon of Brodnax, Kenneth Francis of Boykins, Travis Kidd of Franklin, Doug Kemerer, Instructor, Kashadd Stith of Jarrett , Dennis Seay, Instructor and Clyde Rothgeb, Instructor and   guest speaker,  Frank Sinclair, the recruiter for Schneider National.

SVCC Nursing Club Elects 2017 Officers

Southside Virginia Community College Christanna Campus Nursing Club officers are (Left to Right) President, Patricia Rice, Emporia, Vice President, Randy Roberts, Boydton, Secretary, Emily Watts, Gasburg, Treasurer, Allison Cheely, Blackstone, Co Treasurer, Jacqueline Parham, Dinwiddie.

Help For Harvey Victims at SVCC

The office of Student Activities at Southside Virginia Community College has collaborated with several non-profit organization who will be taking supplies to Texas for Hurricane Harvey Relief.  The student services areas on the Christanna and Keysville campuses will be drop off locations from now until September 15, 2017. 

Items needed include: bleach, cleaning supplies, mops, brooms, dust pans, paper products, laundry detergent, non-perishable food, manual can openers, plastic food containers, plastic zip bags, toothbrushes and toothpaste, combs, brushes, deodorant, soap, shampoo, dry or canned pet food, cat litter, collars and leashes, tarps, batteries and flashlights, emergency candle, clothes pins and lines, matches, generators, shovels, trash bags, diapers, personal care items, and formula for babies. 

Any questions can be directed to Le’Tina giles, Student Activities Coordinator, 434 736 2023 or letina.giles@southside.edu

SVCC Graduates Fifth Class of Power Line Workers

The Power Line Worker Training Program of Southside Virginia Community College graduated the fifth class of students on August 30, 2017.  Those completing the 11-week course are

L-R front Row: Sonny Smith (Instructor) Quadre’ Pulliam (Saxe), Wyatt Timberlake (Crewe), Sidney Card (Chesterfield), Khalil Watson (Farmville), Zachary Davis (Beaverdam), Trey Pruitt (Tangier), Brad Wike and Clyde Robertson (Instructors). 2nd row L-R: Will Nickel (Powhatan), Dylan Loving (Aylett),Dakota House (White Plains) Ryan Keesee (South Hill),  Jimmy Woolcott (Powhatan), Jordan Harris (Nellysford). Back Row L-R: Daniel Hobson (Windsor), Dylan Stimpson (Famrville), Cole Tapp (Wilsons) Corey Clark (Freeman) Josh Quinn (Blackstone), Alex Fletcher (Louisa), Chris Dulin (Locust Grove), Todd Scott Chisholm (Louisa), Tyriq Welton (Prospect), Matthew Townsend (Prospect)

Anita White Recognized for 45 Years of Service

Anita White received recognition from the Commonwealth of Virginia for 45 years of service at Southside Virginia Community College.  She was hired in 1971 as a secretary to the faculty.  She is currently Administrative Assistant to the Director of Workforce Development and Continuing Education.  Anita lives in Lunenburg County.

SVCC Employees Recognized for 5, 10, 15 and 25 Years of Service

Southside Virginia Community College recently recognized employees for Five Years of Service to the Commonwealth of Virginia.  Those who received the recognition are (Left to Right) Mary Downing-Garner, Christin Jackson, Anthony Taylor, Leslie Jackson and Suzanne Shook.  Those unable to attend the ceremony who also are recognized for five years of service are Katherine Irby, Diane "Dee" Pinnell, Michael Williams and Donna Worley.  

Dr. Sarah Horne also was recognized for five years of service to the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Southside Virginia Community  College recently recognized employees who had Ten Years of Service to the Commonwealth of Virginia. They are (Left to Right) David Canning, Leslie Cline, Marika Peterson and Sally Tharrington.  Those unable to attend the ceremony who are also Ten Year recipients are Lois Hicks, Emily Noblin, Kathy Pegram, and Melissa Wood.

Southside Virginia Community College recently recognized employees with 15 Years of Service to the Commonwealth of Virginia.  they are (Left to Right) Leigh Moore and Misty Smiley.  Not pictured is recipient Detra Carr.  

 

Southside Virginia Community College recently recognized employees for 25 Years of Service to the Commonwealth of Virginia.  They are (Left to Right) Dennis Smith and Brenda Elder.  

Accommodating Students with Differences

By Dr. Al Roberts

Many left-handed people observe International Lefthanders Day annually during the month of August. The focus helps raise awareness about the inconveniences and frustrations left-handed people face in a world built for right-handed people.

I am right-handed. Most people are—nearly 90% according to some studies. As a right-handed person, I have never had to cope with scissors that failed to cut because of my grip. When I use a ruler to draw a straight a line, my hand does not obscure the numbers measuring its length. Every time I write in a spiral-bound notebook, use a hand-operated can opener, or peel potatoes, I take advantage of the fact product designers work most frequently with people of my handedness in mind.

Historically, left-handedness carried a stigma. Although this is no longer the case, at least in most of the United States and other places where Western cultural patterns prevail, the English language retains remnants of past prejudices. For example, the word “sinister” means evil, malicious, or devious. The word comes from the Latin sinister, meaning left or left-handed. On the other hand, literally, the Latin opposite, dexter, for right-handed, shows up in English words such as “dexterity” (skill, agility, or nimbleness). A person with “two left feet” is awkward or clumsy, but a “right-hand” man or woman is a reliable helper.

Although contemporary culture no longer views left-handedness as a disability, left-handed students often benefit from using appropriate tools in order to accomplish learning tasks efficiently. Sometimes, these accommodations involve simple items, such as left-handed scissors or notebooks, but accommodations can also extend to complex issues, such as desk design and the ergonomics of computer stations.

In a similar way, students experiencing other needs can benefit from various modifications in the learning environment. Some students struggle and require accommodations because of physical or learning disabilities. Others have chronic health concerns or other challenges.  At Southside Virginia Community College, our mission involves making sure every student has access to an education, and

SVCC’s commitment to equal educational opportunities includes providing reasonable accommodations to students with documented disabilities. Examples of accommodations include preferential seating, note-taking assistance, copies of instructor’s notes, Braille books, adaptive software, private testing rooms or extended time on tests, and oral test administration.

Students with disabilities or chronic health problems are encouraged to identify themselves to a Disability Services Counselor to establish eligibility and to coordinate reasonable accommodations. Students with physical access concerns can also learn about campus parking, wheelchair access availability, and evacuation plans.

Disabilities Services maintains confidential contacts and records. Disability is never indicated on college student records. For more information about accommodations, contact SVCC’s Director of Counseling at 434-949-1063.

Dr. Al Roberts is president of Southside Virginia Community College, an institution of higher learning that provides a wide variety of education opportunities to a diverse student population within a service area that spans ten counties and the city of Emporia. He can be reached via email at al.roberts@southside.edu.

Nursing is Here!

Ivory Richardson never imagined himself as an OR nurse, but in just a few months he’ll be completing his 10th year at VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital in South Hill, Virginia. Forget what you thought you knew about the way nursing should look because Ivory has been breaking the mold since day one. A member of the Haliwa-Saponi Indian Tribe, one of the largest Native American Indian tribes in North Carolina, he was born and raised in Hollister, NC. Although his community was severely impoverished, Ivory was determined to succeed.

Before pursuing nursing, Ivory worked for the  volunteer fire department and full time as a transport medic for EMS. After attending UNC Chapel Hill, Ivory made the decision to continue his education closer to home. His extensive EMT experience helped him get into the RN program at a local community college. He accepted a position at CMH in the ER, before eventually finding his home in the OR, where he fills multiple roles, both as a scrub and circulating nurse.

For Ivory, seeing patients again or out in the community and having them remember the good care that he gave them is incredibly rewarding. “I love taking care of patients,” he says.

He also values the flexibility that his career in nursing has given him, as well as his wife who also works at CMH as an X-ray sonographer and nuclear medicine technologist, a highly-specialized field in and of itself.

“The nursing profession has given both me and my wife incredible flexibility over the years,” says Ivory. “There are so many different fields and areas you can go into that you can truly find something that fits you and your needs.”

“One of the best parts about being an OR nurse is that the schedule is planned ahead and apart from emergency procedures. We don’t work most weekends,” Ivory adds.

Ivory is aware that being a male nurse shatters a few stereotypes but he’s proud of the level of care that he provides his patients.

For more nursing information, visit www.nursingishere.com

Southside Virginia Community College has been named a “2017 Great College to Work For”

SVCC is a great college to work for, according to a new survey by The Chronicle of Higher Education, a top trade publication for colleges and universities.

The results, released July 17, 2017 in The Chronicle’s tenth annual report on The Academic Workplace, are based on a survey of 232 colleges and universities.

Only 79 of the institutions that applied for the program achieved “Great College to Work For” recognition. Results are reported for small, medium, and large institutions, with SVCC included among the 22 two year institutions that made the cut.

SVCC won honors in two categories this year which are Facilities, Workspaces and Security and Work/Life Balance.

"The legacy of Southside Virginia Community College as a great place to work continues.    Once again, we have gained this designation by fostering a college culture that promotes a phenomenal work/life balance and provides a safe, secure and comfortable environment.   We invest in our human resources and encourage inclusive and transparent communication; promote and value diversity; and support innovation," said Dr. Al Roberts, SVCC President.

“Ten years in, the Great Colleges to Work For distinction is well-known by academic jobseekers as a sign that an institution’s employees are valued and given opportunities for growth even when they face financial constraints,” said Liz McMillen, editor of The Chronicle. “Any college or university that’s on the list is showing that they emphasize one of their most valuable assets: their faculty and staff.”

The survey results are based on a two-part assessment process: an institutional audit that captured demographics and workplace policies, and a survey administered to faculty, administrators, and professional support staff. The primary factor in deciding whether an institution received recognition was the employee feedback.

To administer the survey and analyze the results, The Chronicle worked with ModernThink LLC, a strategic human capital consulting firm that has conducted numerous “Best Places to Work” programs, surveying hundreds of thousands of employees nationwide.

“It’s easier to be a great workplace during good times, but it’s when times are tough that the

commitment to workplace quality really gets tested,” said Richard K. Boyer, principal and managing partner, ModernThink LLC. “And those institutions that measure up during times of economic hardship reinforce their already strong cultures and put even more distance between them and their peer institutions for whom they compete for talent.”

August 2017 Truck Driving Graduates

Graduates of the Southside Virginia Community College(SVCC)Truck Driver Training Program held in Emporia are shown with others attending the ceremony.   They are (Left to Right) Dr.  Rene Felts,  VP Workforce Paul D Camp Community College (PDCCC), Dennis Seay Instructor, Doug Kemerer Instructor, Allen Boyd ATA Road Team Captin (Guest Speaker), James Cook of South Hill, Nathan Kraemer of Chesapeake, James Banty of Stony Creek, Michael Prince of Emporia, and Kent Montgomery of Petersburg,  Clyde Rothgeb Instructor, Duncan Quicke, Coordinator of TDTS, Dr. Daniel Lufkin (President PDCCC) and Dr. Al Roberts, President of SVCC

SVCC Welding Program Graduates First Class

Proud graduates of the first Welding Skills Certification Program which was taught at Southside Virginia Education Center of Southside Virginia Community College, Greensville County, Virginia.  The welding laboratory was spearheaded by Fluor, a company that came to Southside Virginia to build two colossal power stations for Dominion Energy.  

Other partners in the creation of the lab are Virginia Tobacco Commission, Dominion Energy, Greensville County and American Equipment Company (Ameco).  The graduates receive three NCCER Credentials as well as an OSHA 10 Credential in this fast track, 11-week training program.  Graduates are (Front Row, Left to Right)Herbert Ruffin of Lawrenceville, Antonio Stewart of Dolphin, Alexia Gary of Emporia, Starr Barnes of Lawrenceville, Paulus Brown of Emporia and (Back Row, L to R) Damienne Drumgold of Lawrenceville,  Bernard Parham, Jr., of Lawrenceville, Isiah Johnson of Emporia, and Dr. Marcus Bridges, Instructor.

Another class begins in September.  Call 434 634 9358 for information.

Southside Virginia Community College Recognizes K-12 Partners

At the July 2017 Board reception held at the John H. Daniel Campus in Keysville, Dr. Al Roberts recognized the K-12 partners who help to ensure the success of Southside Virginia Community College.  The partnership the college has with the local public school divisions and private schools is great, he said.  "Together, we have lead the Commonwealth in the establishment of dual enrollment programs and continue to be among the state's leaders in participation as well as in the number of college certificates and degrees awarded through dual enrollment.  SVCC is proud to serve as host to the Governor's School of Southside Virginia which provides gifted, highly motivated high school juniors and seniors in the region a challenging, interdisciplinary program of studies," Dr. Roberts said.   

He also noted high school partners host the SVCC Career Coaches who work with students to promote secondary education and training.  There are also successful STEM Camps, professional development activities and teacher recertification courses.  Dr. Roberts thanked all those dedicated to supporting the college mission and their dedication to the well-being of the citizens of Southside Virginia.

Dr. Al Roberts (left to right), presents SVCC book bag to Dr. Jack McKinley, Superintendent of Schools for Amelia County, along with SVCC Local Board Chair Sid Smyth.

Dr. Al Roberts (left to right), presents SVCC book bag to Dora Wynn, Superintendent of Schools for Brunswick  County, along with SVCC Local Board Chair Sid Smyth.

Dr. Al Roberts (left to right), presents SVCC book bag to Dr. Angela Wilson, Superintendent of Schools for Greensville  County, along with SVCC Local Board Chair Sid Smyth.

Dr. Al Roberts (left to right), presents SVCC book bag to Dr. Mark Lineburg, Superintendent of Schools for Halifax County, along with SVCC Local Board Chair Sid Smyth

Dr. Al Roberts (left to right), presents SVCC book bag to Paul Nichols, Superintendent of Schools for Mecklenburg County, along with SVCC Local Board Chair Sid Smyth
 

SVCC Nursing Club Donates to Local Cancer Care Fund

SOUTH HILL, VA– The Southside Virginia Community College Nursing Club made a recent generous donation to support VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital’s Cancer Care Fund.  Pictured: (L to R) Brandi Harrell, SVCC Nursing Club member; Molly Buchholz, SVCC Nursing Club President; Ken Kurz, Director of Marketing & Development at VCU Health CMH; Ashley Willis, Registered Nurse at the VCU Health CMH Hendrick Cancer Center and Shannon Lambert, Manager CMH Foundation & VCU Health CMH’s Pharmacy Connection.

The donation benefits the “CMH Cancer Patient Care Fund”established for cancer patients in financial need.

Donations to the “CMH Cancer Patient Care Fund” help offset emergency needs such as transportation, treatment and medication costs for cancer patients. Supporting the cancer care fund can give these patients peace of mind knowing that the inability to cover these costs will not stand in the way of their treatment. 

Learn More About SVCC's Power Line Worker Training Program

Learn more about the Power Line Worker Training Program at Southside Virginia Community College on Wednesday, August 16, 2017.  The informational event begins at 6 p.m. at the SVCC Occupational/Technical Center located at 1041, W 10th Street, Pickett Park, Blackstone, Virginia.

Those interested can learn about admission requirements, schedule, cost, housing, job prospects and scholarships.  Please register by emailing susan.early@southside.edu  Pizza will be served.  (Use the Main Entrance to drive onto the base.)

Grants Enable Workforce Training at SVCC

RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe announced recently that, through the New Economy Workforce Credentials Grant program, Virginia’s Community Colleges provided workforce training that enabled 2,173 Virginians to secure industry-recognized credentials, licenses, and certifications needed for high-demand careers, in the first year of the grant program.

This milestone nearly triples the number of people who were credentialed last year, bringing the total to 4,268 Virginians.  More than half of the credential earners, 2,173, took advantage of the New Economy Workforce Credentials Grant program. Training for the remaining 2,095 credentials was funded by employers, federal grants, or other private sources. 

Nate Humphrey of Amelia Court House enrolled in the power line worker program at Southside Virginia Community College.

The retired U.S. Army Ranger served seven combat deployments in Afghanistan and Iraq. When he came home, he was looking for that same camaraderie.

“When I retired, I missed it,” he said. “And I found it being a lineman.”

Just days after completing the program, he locked down a job at Southside Electric Cooperative.

“I think the course was just at $11,000, but with the grant, I didn’t pay anything,” he said. “The only thing I paid for was my boots and my belt.”

The Workforce Credential Grant Program is now in its second year. Right now, grants are available to support 146 training courses offered at 23 community colleges in the commonwealth.  At SVCC, the grant can cover the following programs for eligible students:  Welding, Power Line Worker Training, Truck Driver Training, Nurse Aide, Massage Therapy, Phlebotomy, Medication Aide and Precision Machining.

See class offerings and register at southside.augusoft.net

Assessing the Value of Education

By Dr. Al Roberts

Every year as the summer turns its focus toward the coming of autumn, back-to-school stories tend to proliferate in national and local media. One recurring theme seems to be the rising cost of college tuition and questions about its value and payback.

To be sure, college costs have risen, and they continue to rise. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a nonpartisan research and policy institute, released a report last year that documented the ways in which recession-related budgetary concerns led to cuts in the support of higher education. In 46 states, including Virginia, government spending per student continues to remain less than what it was prior to the beginning of the recession in 2008. In fact, based on inflation-adjusted dollars, funding for higher education in Virginia is now 22.5 percent less per student. Such reductions in support are one of the factors that contribute to rising tuition. In this fiscal climate, evaluating the return on investments in higher education seems fitting.

Some benefits fall outside the realm of dollars. College graduates tend to be healthier, more engaged in their communities, and better able to understand diverse points of view. In most assessments, however, the question of value revolves around expenditures and paybacks.

In Virginia, community colleges offer a lower-cost, value-based choice. According to information from the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV), tuition and mandatory fees for full-time, in-state undergraduates in Commonwealth’s four-year colleges averages $12,137. With fees of $9,989 for room and board, that yields a grand total of $22,126 per academic year. By comparison, here at Southside Virginia Community College in-state tuition and fees add up to $4,582.50 for 15 credit hours per semester for the entire 2017-18 academic year. Furthermore, 94 percent of beginning undergraduate students receive significant financial aid packages.

But what’s the payback?

College Measures, an initiative of the American Institutes for Research, studied that question. They found that students who graduate from a community college with an Associate’s degree in an occupational or technical field earn an average of $35,718 in the first year after graduation and $41,879 eight years after graduation. At VA.EdPays.org on-line you can download the entire report or interactively explore the data to learn more details about wage variations by field of study and region.  Additionally, students who earn an Associate’s degree in a transfer program can save approximately $35,000 on the cost of obtaining a Bachelor’s degree. They also have an opportunity to establish their academic competitiveness and get a clearer picture of their overall career goals.

For more information about your higher education choices and opportunities, contact SVCC at 434-949-1000. Our team of academic and workforce advisors can help you get the most value from your education dollars.

Dr. Al Roberts is president of Southside Virginia Community College, an institution of higher learning that provides a wide variety of education opportunities to a diverse student population within a service area that spans ten counties and the city of Emporia. He can be reached via email at al.roberts@southside.edu.

Nursing Is Here

At eighteen years old, Na’Shiyaa Robertson might look like your average high school student: active, happy and working hard to balance studies and social life. Beneath the composed exterior however is a highly motivated young woman who is completing the SVCC Nurse Aide program in addition to completing her high school studies at Randolph Henry High School.

Redefining the term ‘multitasking’ SVCC’s dual enrollment program allows Shiyaa to attend nursing classes at the Southside Virginia Community College’s Keysville campus while still in high school. In May, Shiyaa crossed her graduation stage with not only a diploma, but poised to take the state boards to become a Certified Nurses Aide and jumpstart her nursing career.

Shiyaa says she has always felt drawn to the field of nursing, enjoying connecting with and helping others. Shiyaa and her family were deeply affected after losing an uncle to liver disease. Although Shiyaa was very young when her uncle passed, his illness impacted her close knit family profoundly. With multiple aunts already working as RN’s at area hospitals, for Shiyaa, nursing was a natural and fulfilling fit. Once finishing high school, the CNA program and passing her state boards, Shiyaa will follow in the family footsteps to pursue an associate degree in nursing.

“The most incredible part of being a nurse, for me,” says Shiyaa, “is being able to help people do things they’re no longer able to do.”  

Visit nursingishere.com for more information.

Meherrin-Powellton Elementary School Visits SVCC and Uses STEM Skills

The Christanna Campus of Southside Virginia Community College hosted approximately 50 students from Meherrrin-Powellton Elementary School the week of June 26-30, 2017.  Students utilized their STEM(Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) skills to construct and race air propelled cars, construct a device to make a soft landing with fragile equipment, and develop green engineering projects.  Additional challenges included building an air hockey table from a simple cardboard box and building Wiggle Bots.  Students also tested their individual skills by completing daily Minute To Win It Challenges.  

Advanced Manufacturing Summer Camp

Several local youth participated in the first Advanced Manufacturing Summer Camp at Southside Virginia Community College’s Southside Virginia Education Center located in Emporia, VA. The youth had the opportunity to learn about three manufacturing companies (Boar's Head Provision of Jarratt, VA; Toll Brothers of Emporia, VA; and Georgia Pacific of Emporia, VA). The youth also participated in hands on learning in blueprint reading, 3D design, programming for CNC machines, and use of manual mill and lathe machines. The content covered in this camp is also available through SVCC’s dual enrollment programs for computer aided drafting, precision machining and high performance technology. For more information about dual enrollment opportunities, please contact 434-949-1077.

(Left to Right) Anthony Houston, Boar's Head Facilities Manager, Vincent Brown, Camp Instructor and SVCC Professor, Vondrenna Smithers, Camp Director and Advanced Manufacturing Coach, Jackie Hill, Malana Hill, Solomon Hill, Antoine Price, Jr., Christiyanna Terry, Zander Broadbent, Jacques Anderson, Jakob Fillhart, Alex Price, Chris Scott, Boar's Head Electricity Supervisor, Spencer Fillhart, and Lewis Dickens, Boar's Head Refrigeration Supervisor. 

WORK ETHIC LEADS TO COOL JOB

James Branch’s cool job is so cool, he has no plans to quit working until he cannot work anymore.   His cool job is as a mechanic maintaining fire and rescue vehicles for the city of Hopewell, Virginia.

His work ethic and determination have served him well since he dropped out of high school at 16.  Sitting in a classroom environment, listening was not his style of learning.  When he quit school, he was required to pursue a vocational trade and chose the automotive program.

Unable to find work in that profession in his native Lunenburg County, he became an accomplished carpenter and made his living in this arena for 30 years.  When the housing industry and economy turned sour, Branch realized he needed a GED to land a better job.  

At age 50, he completed his GED in six months and secured a job with the city of Petersburg, at first pouring concrete and later in the auto shop.  

When Branch wanted to receive his State Inspection License, the closest school to his current home in Sussex County was the John H. Daniel Campus of Southside Virginia Community College that offered night classes.

After completing the Inspection course, the instructor, Arnold Gayles talked him into continuing.  He received a certificate in Auto Technology in 2014 and then decided that he wanted to continue to an Associate’s Degree.  For four years he drove 81 miles,one way, which equaled 3 ½ to 4 hours on the road and 5 hours in class after working 8 hours in Petersburg. 

“The support and friendship of his instructor Gayles,helped me keep working towards my goal,” he said.  

He graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2016 with an Associate's Degree in Technical Studies.  He is also a member of Phi Theta Kappa honor society.

Branch is very grateful for the knowledge and support that he received from SVCC especially his counselor, Matt Dunn.  Branch now has a good salary and state benefits and a new career.

No stranger to hard work, Branch continues to work on family cars, dabble in carpentry, raise a garden and he and his wife are parents to four daughters.  

He would like for students to remember that “You are never too old to learn”.  

He is planning to keep up with changing technology and the changing workforce.  He can see that he needs to strive to be a “Life Long Learner,” but is seems he has met that goal!

Start Today on Your Successful College Career

Southside Virginia Community College is entering its 47th year in operation.  Over the years, many students have excelled, completed degrees, received work skills, transferred to four year schools and been successful because of their experience at SVCC.  The tradition continues with 2017 fall classes beginning August 21.

Now is the perfect time to register for classes at SVCC, complete information for financial aid, talk with a counselor and prepare for your college career!! 

SVCC offers many programs of study including accounting, administration of justice, administrative support technology, agribusiness, automotive technology, business, clerical studies, cosmetology, diesel technology, education, electricity, emergency medical services, general studies transfer degree, human services, industrial maintenance technology, information systems technology massage therapy, medical office assisting, medication aide, nurse aide, nursing, phlebotomy, power line worker training, practical nursing, precision machining science, truck driver training and welding.

For more information, visit the college website www.southside.eduor call 1-888-220-SVCC (7822).  

Truck Driver Training Being Offered in Emporia

Truck driver training is coming back to Emporia, Virginia on July 17, 2017.  Classes will run through August 24 and successful students will receive their Commercial Driver’s License and the chance at a rewarding career.

Southside Virginia Community College’s next session will run Mondays-Thursdays from 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. at the Emporia site.  Students must be 18 years of age and possess a valid Virginia driver’s license.  Students must also have a copy of their driving record, a Department of Transportation physical exam, drug test and agree to future testing during the course and a CDL-A learner’s permit.

This program is available for tuition aid through the Workforce Credential Grant. 

For more information, contact Susan Early at 434-2920-3101 or email susan.early@southside.edu

Workforce Development Week began June 12, 2017

Success starts here is our motto at Southside Virginia Community College and for six employees working for Toll Brothers advanced manufacturing plant in Emporia, success is occurring one class at a time. Toll Brothers, a luxury homebuilder, is taking part in the SVCC Apprenticeship program. 

The success plan began with identifying a need to train the machine operators in electrical, mechanical, OSHI10, and troubleshooting skills to learn how to effectively repair and maintain Toll Brothers equipment. Currently, the students have completed two electrical classes and have started the Programmable Logic Controller class. This educational accomplishment only required attending class one night a week at the Industrial Training Lab in Emporia. In addition to taking educational classes, they also actively participate in an on-the-job training component. Apprenticeship training is a great way to grow and develop the local workforce of Southside Virginia.

Apprentices: Steven Brown, Calvin Terry, Timothy King, Jeffrey Ernest, Rene Gutierrez. Not pictured is Stoney Allen.

SVCC 2017 Machining Skills Graduates

Machining Skills Certification Program graduates completed recently in Emporia at the Southside Virginia Education Center.  These students are veterans transitioning from active duty, and this program is a collaborative effort with Fort Lee.

They are (Left to Right) Michael Carrigan, Christopher Weber, Steven Welton,Tyler Green, Antonio Hargrove, Jeremy Leesmann, Darrin Sloan, Andrew Berger,  Hugo Palacios, Jeff Combs, Russell Kaneko and Byran Leeds.

What Comes after Graduation?

By Dr. Al Roberts

On May 13, 2017, in front of more than 2,500 people, Southside Virginia Community College awarded degrees, diplomas, and certificates to 1,303 students. For the students who crossed the stage to receive their credentials, the occasion may have seemed like a conclusion. It may have felt like reaching the end of a journey that involved hard-work and dedication. In reality,  the event marked a beginning.

Graduation ceremonies are called commencements. The word commencement means to initiate, to start an activity, or to kick off an experience. A commencement is the exact opposite of a conclusion.

Rev. Lawrence Wilkerson’s invocation focused on this concept of taking a step into the future. He prayed that each student would  discover his or her own amazing destiny, and he asked for divine inspiration “to stir up the determination, steadfastness, and zeal needed to achieve that destiny.”

Commencement speaker Stephen E. Parker, a 2005 SVCC graduate and currently Legislative Director of the Education and Workforce Committee at the National Governors Association, also challenged students to embrace their futures. “Today, the class of 2017 sits on the same launch pad that was there for me and my family,” he said. “So, my question to all of you is this: what kind of world are you lifting off into?” Parker encouraged graduates to seek inclusive and positive ways to interact with society. He exhorted graduates, “I challenge you to set unbelievably, distractingly ambitious goals.”

By tradition, candidates for graduation wear regalia consisting of gowns and caps adorned with tassels.

At SVCC, graduates with honors wear gold tassels and others wear black tassels. During the ceremony, one of my duties involved leading students in the customary practice of turning their tassels. Students enter the ceremony with their tassels hanging on the right side. Turning the tassel involves moving it to left side, a symbolic action that signifies a change in status from being a candidate for graduation to being a graduate. Moving the tassel is like turning a page to open the next chapter in a student’s life story.

For some graduates, that next chapter will involve more education. Surveys reveal that nearly half of all SVCC graduates plan to transfer to four-year colleges or universities. Others graduates may begin careers, start families or businesses, or enter into military service.

Whatever tomorrow’s journey brings, I agree with Mr. Syd Smyth, SVCC’s Local Board Vice-Chair, who encouraged the audience and the community to follow the example set by the graduates when he said, “I challenge you to enter our doors and explore the many opportunities that may await you. Give it a try. You can never, never be too old to learn or to enrich yourself.”

Dr. Al Roberts is president of Southside Virginia Community College, an institution of higher learning that provides a wide variety of education opportunities to a diverse student population within a service area that spans ten counties and the city of Emporia. He can be reached via email at al.roberts@southside.edu.

Ninth Annual Corrections Awards Banquet Held at SVCC

Southside Virginia Community College recently held the Ninth Annual Corrections Awards Banquet at the Christanna Campus.  The event recognized Officer and Employee of the Year for each of the area correctional centers.  Lawrenceville Correctional Center (GEO) sponsored the event and trophies.  Those recognized are (Front Row, Left to Right) Officer Michael W. Hatcher, Halifax Correctional Unit #23, Officer Joshua Affronti, Nottoway Correctional Center, Officer Lisa Williams, Lawrenceville Correctional Center, Katrina Allen, Lawrenceville, Alfonzo Seward, Administration of Justice Program, SVCC, Officer Rebecca Kindred, Deerfield Correctional Center, Linda Smith, Buckingham Correctional Center, Brenda Richards, Lunenburg Correctional Center, (Back Row, L to R) Larry Edmonds, Guest Speaker, Warden of Dillwyn Correctional Center, Sergeant Terrell Eppes, Buckingham Correctional Center, Arthur Byrd, Nottoway, Sandra Vass, Halifax, Lieutenant Tonya Clary, Lunenburg, Astrid Woodson, Dillwyn, Sergeant Duane Parrish, Dillwyn, Kelly Owens, Baskerville Correctional Center.  Not pictured are Officer Paul Arthur, Baskerville, Teresa Porrovecchio of Deerfield, Lieutenant Jerry McKnight and Joyce Johnson of Greensville Correctional Center.

Warden Tammy C. Brown and Assistant Warden Jo Ann Hasley-Hsrris of Deerfield Correctional Center withOfficer Rebecca Kindred, Officer of the Year and Alfonzo Seward, SVCC.   Teresa Porrovecchio is Employee of the Year but could not attend.

Mr. Larry Edmonds, Warden of Dillwyn Correctional Center, is shown with Alfonzo Seward, Program Director for Administration of Justice at Southside Virginia Community College.  Edmonds was the guest speak at the Ninth Annual Corrections Awards Banquet held at SVCC and sponsored by Lawrenceville Correctional Center.

Board Names Golf Classic in Memory of Reekes

In 2008, Bobby Wrenn of Emoria and Freddie Reekes of Lawrenceville coordinated the 1st Annual Southside Virginia Community College Foundation Scholarship Golf Classic.  Funds raised through the event support student scholarships.   This year marks the tenth time the tournament will be held and is slated for June 7, 2017, at the Lake Gaston Golf Club.  The SVCC Foundation Board recently voted to rename the annual golf tournament the Fred "Freddie" Reekes Memorial Scholarship Golf Classic. 

Freddie's passing on May 7 shocked and saddened the Southside community.  Freddie spent 40 plus years in education.  He taught in the Brunswick County Public Schools and later recruited students to SVCC. He was also a legendary basketball coach for both girls and boys at Brunswick.  In addition to being an educator, Freddie was an avid golfer and his team, "Old Coach", was a consistent participant in the Golf Classic.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - SVCC

 

Emporia News

Stories on Emporianews.com are be searchable, using the box above. All new stories will be tagged with the date (format YYYY-M-D or 2013-1-1) and the names of persons, places, institutions, etc. mentioned in the article. This database feature will make it easier for those people wishing to find and re-read an article.  For anyone wishing to view previous day's pages, you may click on the "Previous Day's Pages" link in the menu at the top of the page, or search by date (YYYY-M-D format) using the box above.

Comment Policy:  When an article or poll is open for comments feel free to leave one.  Please remember to be respectful when you comment (no foul or hateful language, no racial slurs, etc) and keep our comments safe for work and children. .Comments are moderated and comments that contain explicit or hateful words will be deleted.  IP addresses are tracked for comments. 

EmporiaNews.com serves Emporia and Greensville County, Virginia and the surrounding area
and is provided as a community service by the Advertisers and Sponsors.
All material on EmporiaNews.com is copyright 2005-2016
EmporiaNews.com is powered by Drupal and based on the ThemeBrain Sirate Theme.

Submit Your Story!

Emporia News welcomes your submissions!  You may submit articles, announcements, school or sports information using the submission forms found here, or via e-mail on news@emporianews.com.  Currently, photos and advertisements will still be accepted only via e-mail, but if you have photos to go along with your submission, you will receive instructions via e-mail. If you have events to be listed on the Community Calendar, submit them here.

Contact us at news@emporianews.com
 
EmporiaNews.com is hosted as a community Service by Telpage.  Visit their website at www.telpage.net or call (434)634-5100 (NOTICE: Telpage cannot help you with questions about Emporia New nor does Teplage have any input the content of Emporia News.  Please use the e-mail address above if you have any questions, comments or concerns about the content on Emporia News.)