Current Weather Conditions

Seven Day Forecast for Emporia, Virginia

Community Calendar Sponsored By...



Emporia News needs your help...

Do you read Emporia News every day? Have you ever considered supporting this community based news service with a donation? You may also make a recurring donation with a subscription.

Emporia News needs your help because it is time to replace a laptop and a camera, so that I may continue to bring you a quality site. It troubles me to ask for donations, but without support, Emporia News may be forced to shut down. Thank You.

For more information, please call Amanda at (434)594-7924

Click on ad to visit registration website.

Register now for Fall Classes

Register now for Fall 2016 classes at Southside Virginia Community College!!  Classes begin in August but are enrolling now reserves your space and allows you to get the classes you need.

The classes offered are on the college website now at  If you need additional help, you can visit a campus or center or call us at 888-220-SVCC or call 434-949-1000 or 434-736-2000.  You can register by mail, phone online and in person. 

SVCC offers the first two years of a four-year degree and transfer is made easy.  Southside Virginia Community College offers degrees and certificates in

  • Accounting
  • Administration of Justice
  • Medical Office Assisting
  • Agribusiness
  • Welding
  • Nursing
  • Business Administration
  • Automotive Technology
  • Cosmetology and Barbering
  • Diesel Technology
  • Education
  • Electricity
  • Electronics
  • Emergency Medical Services
  • Fire Science Technology
  • General Studies
  • Human Services
  • Business Management
  • Information Systems Technology
  • Administrative Support Technology
  • Industrial Maintenance Technology
  • Practical Nursing
  • Precision Machining
  • Truck Driver Training
  • Air conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration

And also offers credentials in areas such as Power Line Worker Training, Nurse Aide and Phlebotomy.


Fifty Years Ago, Legislation Signed Creating Comprehensive Community College System for Virginia

This photo of legislation being signed appeared in the Richmond Times Dispatch on April 7, 1966

RICHMOND —April 6 marks the 50th anniversary of the signing of legislation that created the Virginia Community College System.

Fifty years ago, the General Assembly passed and Governor Mills Godwin signed, on April 6, legislation that created the State Board for Community Colleges and the State Department of Community Colleges.

The legislation paved the way for what would become, by 1972, a statewide system of 23 comprehensive community colleges, realizing the vision of having higher education opportunity within commuting distance of all Virginians.

Virginia’s Community Colleges are marking the 50th Anniversary of the statewide system of comprehensive community colleges in 2016 with a year-long observance that celebrates the progress of the past 50 years as well as the promise of the future.

Since then, Virginia’s 23 colleges have served well over 2.6 million people, awarded more than 575,000 credentials and associate degrees, and launched countless numbers of transfer students into bachelor programs, advanced degrees, and successful careers.  

The original legislation creating the system merged technical colleges that existed or were under construction with two-year branches of four-year institutions, and subsequently, with entirely new institutions to promote Godwin’s vision of a comprehensive community college that served both the transfer and the occupational needs of all Virginians.

Two colleges, Northern Virginia and Virginia Western, opened as part of the system in the fall of 1996, which grew to eight by the next fall and to 23 by the fall of 1972.

“Whatever else our community colleges may accomplish,” Godwin said at the 1967 dedication of John Tyler Community College, “they have taught us that we can never again think of a college education as something that belongs to the privileged or the few.”

In 2016, Virginia’s Community Colleges are celebrating tremendous gains while enthusiastically looking forward to the profound difference community colleges will make in Virginia’s new economy over the next half-century.

As part of that year-long observance, community members can share their stories regarding what community colleges have meant for them.  A web landing page has been created to collect those stories at


REED Is 2016 SVCC Commencement Speaker

Martha Reed has a passion for teaching.  This passion will undoubtedly be evident in her speech to the Class of 2016 of Southside Virginia Community College at the May 14th Commencement to be held at the Christanna Campus in Alberta at 9:30 a.m.

Reed, Assistant Professor of Biology, has been a member of the SVCC faculty for 23 years.  She teaches Anatomy and Physiology, General Biology, Basic Human Biology, Foundations of Biology and has taught Dual Enrollment and Governor’s School classes. 

A graduate of Randolph-Macon Womans College (Phi Beta Kappa), she received her Masters degree from Virginia Tech (magna cum laude).   During her tenure, she has received many awards including 2009 Virginia Community College Association’s Faculty Showcase 2009 and 2014, 2012 NISOD (National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development) Excellence in Teaching and the 2015 Virginia Community College Chancellor’s Award in Community Service.

“Teaching for me is a mission and not just a job.  I have the chance to change someone’s life every day.  Teaching at a Community College as compared to a larger university gives me the opportunity to get to know my students on a more personal level,” Reed said.

Not only does she love teaching but her students also return the love.  In student surveys, they have said, “She was helpful and helps the student when needed.  Also cares about her students.  Absolutely love her as a teacher,” and “Mrs. Reed is always willing to go out of her way to answer any questions asked.”

Reed also has a passion for mission work and she expects her students to become involved in community service projects also.  These have included Stop Hunger Now events, March of Dimes and Alzheimer’s Walks.  She has been on three international medical mission trips to Honduras and Guatemala.  She has also helped with mission trips to South Carolina to help the Edisto Indians and workied with the homeless in Atlanta.

She is married to Dr. David Reed, resides in Blackstone, VA,  and they have two daughters Maggie (21) and Mary Preston (16).  Besides her mission work, she enjoys cooking, gardening, walking and spending time with her family at the beach.


The Costs and Value of Higher Education

According to U.S. Census Data, only 24.5% of people older than 25 years in 1940 had completed high school. At that time, people without a high school diploma could still earn family-sustaining wages. By the mid-1960s, more than half of all people over the age of 25 held a high school diploma, and increasingly that credential was needed to secure stable employment.  Today, a high-school education isn’t enough. Employers often demand postsecondary credentials.

Many recent studies have reported that people with any level of higher education generally have a greater earnings potential than others. Research also shows that they have better perceptions of personal health and well-being, demonstrate increased levels of volunteerism, and are more likely to vote.

Although these benefits are known, a crisis looms over America’s higher education system. Indebtedness for education loans currently totals more than $1.2 trillion. This is more than the amount owed on all credit cards combined. It is more than the total amount owed on auto loans. In fact, student debt is the second largest category of debt in the United States. Only mortgage debt surpasses it. Increasingly, college graduates are unable to achieve independent lifestyles or make the types of purchases (such as cars and homes) that have traditionally been associated with moving the economy forward.

Community colleges play a vital role in creating a solution. Virginia’s community colleges offer high-quality academic programs at tuition rates that are generally less than half those charged by other types of public higher-education institutions. Furthermore, students who can pursue their studies while still living at home save on room and board charges, and these added fees can nearly double the cost of attending a four-year college or university.

Here at Southside Virginia Community College, we offer a comprehensive array of accredited post-secondary programs that lead to Associate in Arts and Science degrees, Associate in Applied Science degrees, and other industry-recognized credentials. For students who plan to continue an education path leading to baccalaureate and advanced degrees, SVCC simplifies the process through transfer and guaranteed admissions agreements with more than 20 other colleges and universities. Additionally, SVCC’s dual enrollment program allows high-achieving students to meet the requirements for high school graduation while simultaneously earning college credit. For students and their families, this represents a chance to reduce future college expenses.

If you have questions about admission, visit SVCC’s website at or call one of the two main campuses: the Christanna Campus in Alberta (434-949-1000) or the Daniel Campus in Keysville (434-736-2000). To learn more about financial aid solutions that do not rely on loans and indebtedness, call SVCC’s financial aid office at 855-877-3943. For details about dual enrollment, call 434-736-2080. Early registration for the Fall 2016 semester begins on April 1.

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

Job Fair Coming To SVCC Alberta

Job Fair 2016 is coming to Southside Virginia Community College in Alberta on Wednesday, March 30, 2016 from 2:00 to 4:30 p.m.  Sponsored by SVCC Workforce Development, Elevate Virginia, Lake Country Business Solutions and SVCC Student Development Services, this offers free admission to all job  seekers.

Early entry at 1:45 p.m. is offered with proof of your WorkKeys CRC.  Be sure to dress to impress, bring plenty of resumes, photo ID and WorkKeys Career Readiness Certificate.

Many employers are planning to attend and may get more information by contacting Angela McClintock at 434-949-1026.


Prospective Power Line Workers Climb to New Heights

March 1, 2016 was a Super Tuesday at Southside Virginia Community College’s Occupational/Technical Center at Pickett Park in Blackstone, but not for reasons related to the nation’s primary elections. Dignitaries from around the Commonwealth gathered to celebrate the launch of SVCC’s Power Line Worker Training School and to honor the students enrolled in its inaugural class. Under the banner “Climbing to New Heights Together,” the event brought together many of the people involved in partnerships that made the new program possible.

In his opening remarks, Dr. Al Roberts, President of SVCC, said “Meeting the workforce needs of our region is a monumental task, and no single agency or organization can do it alone. Our success is dependent upon the collaborative engagement of leadership across the Commonwealth.”

Dr. Glenn Dubois, Chancellor of the Virginia Community College System, explained how the VCCS and SVCC worked in collaboration with key partners to make the program a reality. Commitments from the Virginia Maryland Delaware Association of Electric Cooperatives membership, along with a grant received through the Governor’s Competition for Talent Solutions, provided the foundation.

John C. Lee, Jr., President and CEO of Mecklenburg Electric Cooperative, was among those on hand. He spoke words of encouragement to the students, reminding them, “Thomas Edison, a man those of us in the electric industry hold in high regard, once said, ‘Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls, and looks like work.’” He continued, “Here at SVCC’s Power Line Worker Training School, opportunity is dressed in fire retardant clothing, wearing a hardhat, a set of climbing hooks and a tool belt, and make no mistake about it… represents hard work.”

The Power Line Worker Training School offers tremendous opportunities for students and electric utilities. Graduating students receive credentials that confer a significant advantage in the utility job market, giving them entry into a career path that leads to a well-paying occupation. Electric utilities gain potential employees trained in safety and with the skills necessary to enter the profession at a time when many current line workers will soon be eligible for retirement.

Jeff Brown, Director of Workforce Services for the Governor’s Office, called the establishment of the school “a no-brainer” saying it fit into the New Virginia Economy plan and that there is nothing much more important than sources to power our nation.

Keith Harkins, SVCC’s Vice President of Workforce remarked on the urgency he felt from industry partners concerned about their large number of pending line worker retirements. Mr. Harkins also commented on the outstanding career opportunities students will have upon completing the program. “This program allows students to train for a career in 11 weeks! There are just not many opportunities like that out there today. “

Calling the new school “the perfect public/private partnership,” Jeff Edwards, CEO of Southside Electric Cooperative (SEC), said that SEC and the Mecklenburg Electric Cooperative felt fortunate that the site is located nearby and that it offers an outdoor laboratory for real life skills. He claimed that students “will stand out in job applications.”

The school program runs 11 weeks. Clyde Robertson, a 42-year veteran lineman serves as instructor. He is assisted by Brad Wike. Students learn essential pole climbing skills and also earn commercial driver’s licenses and OSHA certification. Those in the inaugural class will graduate in May.

Enrollment for the next class, beginning on July 11, 2016 is currently underway. To be eligible, prospective students must hold a high school or equivalency diploma and be able to qualify for a CDL license. For more information, contact Susan Early at 434-292-3101.



The Career Readiness Certificate can prove to employers that you can do the job.  This Pre-Course for this testing is available locally at the Southside Virginia Education Center in Emporia.

According to Natalie Slate, Director of Economic Development for Greensville County, “The ACT NCRC not only assists individuals, it also helps assure employers that the people they hire and promote have the skills necessary to succeed. Having a skilled and trained workforce is vital to attract business and industry to our area."

The Virginia CRC is a credential designed to provide evidence that an individual is ready for work with respect to fundamental standards or workforce literacy. 

Prep courses will be offered in Emporia on March 16 from 8 a.m. until 12 noon, April 20, 2016 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and May 25 from 8 a.m. until 12 noon.  Pre-registration is required by calling Angela McClintock at 434-949-1026 or email

Testing dates are available the second Tuesday of each month through June at the SVEC.  Tests begin at 9 a.m. and pre-registration is also required through Angela McClintock.


New Classes Beginning AT SVCC In Mid March

It is not too late to take a class at Southside Virginia Community College this semester.  Students can catch up or get a head-start with eight week classes beginning the week of March 14, 2016. 

For more information, call Student Services at 434-736-2022 or 434-949-1067 or visit the college website at

New offerings include Online Classes that can be taken from any computer.  The classes are Intermediate Accounting II, Specialized Software Applications, Principles of Microeconomics, College Composition I, Survey of African American Lit. II, Ethics, Principles of Psychology and Religions of the World. 

Christanna Campus in Alberta is offering Developmental Chemistry for Health Sciences, Intro to Computer Applications and Concepts and College Skills and the John H. Daniel Campus offers Basic Switching and Routing-Cisco, Aerobic Dance and Zumba, and College Success Skills.  At the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center in South Boston, the new 8-week classes are Human Anatomy and Physiology including a Lab.

Students can also begin registration for Summer classes on March 14, 2016.  For information about Your Community College, visit


Partnerships and Education

By Dr. Al Roberts

In the early seventeenth century, poet John Donne wrote, “No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main” (Meditation XVII, 1624).

The observation about the ways in which we are all interconnected is especially evident in education. Education requires diligent work by a student and a teacher. The teacher prepares lessons, presents material, and provides a feedback mechanism to evaluate progress. The student attends to lessons, completes assignments, and employs an active mind to push beyond barriers and overcome obstacles. In the most effective learning environments, students become teachers and teachers become learners. Everyone benefits.

But education is more than just the relationship between a single teacher and one student. At Southside Virginia Community College, virtually all our programs involve collaborative efforts. SVCC’s service region, the largest in the Commonwealth, spans ten counties plus the city of Emporia. In order to deliver education opportunities throughout this vast territory, we work in concert with many other entities that provide classroom space and other services. Off-campus centers include the Estes Community Center in Chase City, the Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center in South Hill, the Occupational Technical Center at Pickett Park in Blackstone, the Southside Virginia Education Center in Greensville County, and the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center in South Boston.

In addition, local high school students and their families benefit from our dual enrollment program, which involves partnerships with K-12 schools and regional superintendents. Area hospitals, nursing homes, and other health care providers offer resources and job opportunities for students in SVCC’s nursing and allied health programs. And, since its inception, the Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission has provided much-needed financial support for innovative programming focused on finding creative solutions to problems that result from poverty and unemployment.

Another superb example of teamwork between education and employers is the recently launched Power Line Worker Program at Pickett Park. Virginia’s 13 consumer-owned electric cooperatives, together with their peers in Maryland and Delaware, projected a critical shortage of experienced electric utility line workers. To help address this skills gap, SVCC acted in collaboration with other public and private sector entities to develop a program that would prepare students for entry into the profession. The Power Line Worker Program relies on curriculum developed by the National Association for Construction Education and Research (NCCER), whose credentials are internationally recognized.

A complete list of SVCC’s partners would go on and on, but these few serve to illustrate some of the ways in which education partnerships build bridges to connect and enhance our communities. Businesses benefit from the availability of a qualified workforce, and local citizens earn industry-recognized credentials that open the doors of opportunity to sustainable, self- or family-supporting careers.

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

Dr. John J. Cavan Named President Emeritus By VCCS

Former Southside Virginia Community College President Dr. John J. Cavan has been granted president emeritus status by the Virginia State Board for Community Colleges.  The honor was awarded in recognition of his more than three decades of service as SVCC president and for his exceptional leadership, innovation and service to education in Virginia.

Nominated for the honor by the SVCC Local Board, candidates for this status must have provided ten or more years of outstanding, distinguished and honorable service to the VCCS.  The appointment of President Emeritus is for life.

Current SVCC President Dr. Al Roberts said, “In his 31 plus years as president, Dr. Cavan set the groundwork and directed a course toward SVCC's continued success and prosperity.  Dr. Cavan often spoke of Southside as “democracy’s college” and was committed to creating a culture of higher education across Southside Virginia.  I consider myself privileged to have served with him for more than 20 years and I am grateful for his mentorship and support.

According to the letter of nomination, “When Dr. Cavan took the helm in 1983, there were rumors of closing the college but he accepted the challenge and by 1986, headcount had increased by 47 percent.  Through tenacity and hard work, he set about the task of serving the underserved and building a strong tradition of education for the largest service region in the Virginia Community College System.”

Under Cavan’s Leadership, there were many accomplishments including:

  • The opening of six off-campus centers to take education to the people in their community
  • Starting practical and associate degree nursing programs at the college
  • Opening the door for a Truck Driver Training School along with Diesel Tech Program
  • Securing the first new construction since the 70s on the campuses with the Workforce Development Centers and later, the Learning Resources and Student Services Building on the Daniel Campus
  • Dr. Cavan also oversaw the implementation of the Dual Enrollment Program that involved many area high school students in college
  • He was also an advocate for the Campus Within Walls program offering education to inmates in local prisons

He served as President from 1983 until 2014.


Workforce Credentials Assure Economic Vitality

By Dr. Al Roberts

News headlines recently focused on the startling announcement that the number of people in America’s middle-income tier had fallen to less than half of the nation’s population. Some families moved out of the middle class by climbing the socioeconomic ladder into greater wealth. Many others, however, slipped into poverty. The shrinking of the middle class and corresponding increases in income inequality pose significant concerns because sustaining a vibrant middle class is vital to our nation’s economic health.

In this regard, Virginia faces unique challenges. The Commonwealth has suffered lost employment opportunities within the tobacco and coal industries, and force reductions within the military sector have increased the numbers of our neighbors who are seeking employment.

Yet employers also face challenges. In a recent study done by Burning Glass Technologies, a company specializing in labor market analytics, employers reported difficulties in finding qualified skilled workers. The study estimated that more than $1 billion in potential wages had been lost as Virginia’s employers struggled to fill open positions. The situation is especially acute here in Southside Virginia where our employment figures continue to lag behind those of other regions.

To help address these concerns, Virginia’s community colleges developed a comprehensive plan to expand worker-training programs and ensure that our labor force has the credentials employers require. As a partner in this effort, Southside Virginia Community College is committed to tripling the number of credentials earned by students. Last year, in addition to awarding hundreds of associate’s degrees in various fields, the college also prepared students for state licensing in several different nursing fields and helped other students achieve certifications in work-related areas. In fact, SVCC students can currently pursue many different industry-recognized credentials from entities such as the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), American Welding Society (AWS), and National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER), National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS), and Microsoft. Furthermore, we’re working with businesses right here in Southside Virginia to identify which additional certifications or other credentials will best prepare workers for more and better jobs.

Expanding the availability of financial aid is another important part of this work. Data demonstrate that the low-income and out-of-work students who are most poised to benefit from short-term workforce training opportunities are the least able to afford the tuition. For this reason, SVCC is working alongside our sister institutions within the Virginia Community College System to encourage legislative support to expand access to short-term training financial aid for individuals pursuing in-demand and high-demand credentials.

As individual successes lead to increasing prosperity for families, the economic vitality of Southside Virginia will be assured. At SVCC, we are eager to help our neighbors achieve career goals through the attainment of credentials that will enhance our region’s reputation for the quality and competitiveness of its workforce.

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

Governor’s Grant & Virginia’s Electric Co-ops Help Launch New Power Line Worker Program

Blackstone, Va. ― Southside Virginia Community College (SVCC) early in 2016 will begin offering a training program designed to address the projected critical shortage of skilled electric utility line workers. This program, which will involve 11 weeks of intensive classroom and hands-on training, will ready its graduates for employment as apprentice line workers at electric utilities.

And thanks to Virginia’s 13 consumer-owned electric cooperatives, this type of pre-apprentice training will become a reality at a time when skilled line workers are needed to replace the wave of retirements expected in the industry over the next few years. And, such training will be provided in Southside Virginia, a region of the state hungry for more skilled workforce training to allow its young people to remain in the area to work and raise families.

“Supporting our communities is what co-ops are all about,” noted Southside Electric Cooperative President and CEO Jeffrey S. Edwards. His utility developed a prototype “Day in the Life of a Lineman” program with local schools, which served as a springboard to spark and feed interest among area young people in careers as line workers. “We have been very gratified at the response among high school students in our communities, who want challenging, rewarding careers that will allow them to remain in rural Southside Virginia,” he explained.

“We’re extremely pleased to have had this opportunity to work with Governor McAuliffe, Southside Virginia Community College, and the entire Community College System, to help train our young people for great careers as line workers, and to provide a needed boost to Southside Virginia,” said John C. Lee, Jr., president and CEO of Mecklenburg Electric Cooperative another strong, early proponent of the school.

“Innovation is the cornerstone of Southside Virginia Community College.  The Line Worker Program is another example of our willingness to pioneer programs in response to local and regional industry needs.   The Power Line Worker Program offers national credentials for those completing it. This is an exciting prospect for our college and our students,” said Dr. Al Roberts, SVCC President

SVCC’s new Power Line Worker Training Program was one of five successful entries in the first Governor’s Competition for Talent Solutions, announced earlier this fall. The Power Line Worker Training Program will benefit from a $200,000 matching incentive grant intended to provide new workforce training options and develop the state’s rural economy as part of the Rural Virginia Horseshoe Initiative. Former Virginia Governor Gerald L. Baliles heads up the rural workforce training initiative as chairman of the community college system’s foundation.

“Awarding these grants exemplifies the Commonwealth’s commitment to building a demand-driven workforce system,” said Governor McAuliffe. “We’re excited about the innovative solutions put forth and we look forward to working together with our community colleges and the private sector to train a new generation of highly skilled talent that will help us build a new Virginia economy.”

Thanks to a separate grant received earlier this year from SVCC’s Equipment Trust Fund, seed money was available to begin planning the Power Line Worker Training Program at SVCC’s Occupational/ Technical Center, located at Blackstone’s Pickett Park, site of the former U.S. Army base, Fort Pickett.

At that point, with encouragement from Edwards, Lee and Rappahannock Electric Cooperative President and CEO Kent D. Farmer, Virginia’s electric cooperatives quickly rallied behind the planned training program, providing support in an array of ways, from donations of materials and equipment, to financial assistance, to technical advice on how to design the program and set up the training yard.

“Cooperatives strongly support workforce training in the communities we serve, and of course the training that will take place at this new school will help provide our cooperatives with a pool of excellent young candidates for line worker positions,” pointed out Rappahannock CEO Kent Farmer. “So it was a natural fit for Virginia’s electric cooperatives to support both the Rural Horseshoe Initiative that will impact all rural areas, and specifically this line worker school that will benefit our workforce.”

“We literally could not have gotten this line worker program going without the strong support of Virginia’s electric cooperatives,” said Keith Harkins, vice president of workforce and continuing education for SVCC. “The way they got behind this worthy cause so strongly and so quickly was a sight to see.”

“We’ll be able to offer this demanding, technical training beginning in March of 2016,” added Mary Jane Elkins, executive director of the SVCC Foundation. “This dream literally became a reality in less than a year, thanks to Virginia’s electric cooperatives and the Governor’s office. It’s a shining example of how a public/private partnership can and should work.”

Mecklenburg’s John Lee commented, “Young people who choose this career are truly heroes. They’re first responders who do what it takes—safely, efficiently and tenaciously—to get the power back on after storms and other outage events. This is a challenging career, but a truly fulfilling one, and we’re just delighted to have been a part of making it happen.”

Southside CEO Jeff Edwards noted that the “Day in the Life of a Lineman” program has led many students to reconsider their career plans. “Many young people will end up making this their life’s work. They’ll enjoy a wonderful career that’s more than just a job, working outdoors and helping thousands of people in their communities, providing a critically important, essential service.”


SVCC Workforce Offering FREE CLASSES

Southside Virginia Community College’s Workforce Center is offering a number of free classes during the winter months.  Be sure to register for the classes you are interested in taking!!

Computer Courses

Students will be introduced to the wonderful world of the computer and an overview of the Internet, in these noncredit entry level classes.

Beginners Computer Courses

Cost: Free

Time: 9 am – 4 pm

Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center - 118 East Danville Street, South Hill - March 17, 2016

Clarksville Enrichment Complex - 1567 Noblin Farm Road, Clarksville - January 28, 2016

Southside Virginia Education Center - 1300 Greensville County Circle, Emporia - March 15, 2016

Southside Virginia Community College - 109 Campus Drive, Alberta VA - April 30, 2016

Pre-registration for non-credit classes is required. Register online at www. For additional assistance contact Angela McClintock at 434-949-1026 or by email at

Personal Finance

February 5, 2015

Cost: FREE

Time: 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center - 118 East Danville Street, South Hill - This seminar includes barriers and hurdles of personal finance and action steps for getting your finances in order.

Pre-registration for non-credit classes is required. Register online at www. For additional assistance contact Angela McClintock at 434-949-1026 or by email at

Use Your Financial Capital to Produce an Income Stream

March 4, 2015

Cost: FREE

Time: 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center - 118 East Danville Street, South Hill. This workshop covers ways to use your financial assets to build your retirement paycheck.

Pre-registration for non-credit classes is required. Register online at www. For additional assistance contact Angela McClintock at 434-949-1026 or by email at

Social Security

April 8, 2015

Cost: Free

Time: 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center

118 East Danville Street, South Hill. This workshop offers the tools to help you with one of your most important retirement decisions — when and how to claim Social Security.

Pre-registration for non-credit classes is required. Register online at www. For additional assistance contact Angela McClintock at 434-949-1026 or by email at


SVCC in 2016

Make Southside Virginia Community College your destination for 2016.  The college re-opens on January 4, 2016 for business.

Plan now to sign up for classes that begin January 11, 2016.  The new year means a new start so check out what SVCC has to offer for you in your educational or career future.  There are many programs of study to consider such as Truck Driving, Diesel Tech, Nursing, Information Technology, first two years of a four-year degree, Power Line Worker, Welding, Automotive, Fire Fighter, EMS, Business Technology and much more.  Visit for more information.



Southside Virginia Community College wants to help make your first year experience the best possible. One way to prepare for your academic success is to begin with the right tools, starting day one. NSO 2.0 (New Student Orientation) is a fun, half-day event that will jump start your academic career and ensure a successful transition to SVCC. This FREE event is open to all incoming Spring 2016 students.


  • Christanna Campus  (Alberta, VA) – Wednesday, January 6th  (Registration beginning at 9:30 AM) 
  • John H. Daniel Campus  Campus (Keysville, VA) – Thursday, January  7th (Registration beginning at 9:30 AM)

For more information  please call Le'Tina Giles, Student Activities Coordinator at 434-736-2023 or by email at


Six Reasons to attend Southside Virginia Community College

There are many reasons to choose Southside Virginia Community College when furthering your education beyond high school.  Six of the most important reasons are offered in this article.  Try Southside and you will discover more reasons why we say Success starts here.


Tuition and Fees at Southside Virginia Community College for two semesters equals $4,080.00 as compared with $9, 919.00 at an average public four-year college.  In two years, students save an average of $10,000 by attending community college.

Relationship To Professors

Some students have difficulty transitioning from a small high school to a large, impersonal university. These students may find the smaller campus and classes of a community college are more comfortable right after the high school years. Community colleges typically offer more personalized attention, from the counselors in the admissions office to the professors in the classroom

Second chance to go to your dream college

Virginia’s community colleges offer students more than the opportunity to earn a degree or certificate. They provide a gateway to the commonwealth’s four-year colleges and universities.  Through system-wide agreements, students who graduate from one of Virginia's 23 community colleges with an associate's degree and a minimum grade point average may obtain GUARANTEED admission to more than 20 of the commonwealth's colleges and universities.
Easier Admission Policies

Southside, like many community colleges, has an “open door” admission policy that means anyone can register for the school as long as he has a high school diploma or GED®


High school graduates who find they need to work while in college may discover that community college schedules are much more flexible than those provided by a four-year institution.  Plus, they can keep the job they have been working through their high school years.

Hands-On Experience

Since community colleges often prepare people for professions right out of the door, there is more hands-on learning offered.  Students in truck driving actually drive the truck; in welding, they weld; in nursing, they work in the hospitals during clinical rotation; and in automotive and diesel tech, the students fix car and truck engines.


Spring Registration is going on now for classes that begin January 11.  For more information,


SVCC's McMillan Selected to Attend the SVA Leadership Institute

Walter Tillman(left photo)  who is the Director of Programs at Student Veterans of America and (right)s Jared Lyon the Chief Development Officer/Executive Vice President of Operations for Student Veterans of America. The corporate sponsor for our event was Gulfstream General Dynamics Company.  Shown with Monica McMillan

Monica McMillan, who is president of Student Veterans of America(SVCChristanna Chapter, Southside Virginia Community College, was selected to attend the  SVA Leadership Institute held in Savannah, Georgia recently. 

With a focus on easing the transition from combat to classroom and building sustainable student veteran organizations, the themes of the 2015 Leadership Institute were Strategic Planning, Collaborative Integration, Advanced Chapter Management Techniques and Networking and Professional Etiquette.

Throughout the three day event, student veteran leaders in attendance had  the opportunity to work with other chapter leaders to develop innovative solutions to real life scenarios that affect life on campus every day. Attendees were also able to connect with corporate leaders from the Institute's co-host, Walmart, during networking receptions and events. The corporate sponsor for our event was Gulfstream General Dynamics Company.

McMillan is WIOA Youth Case Manager at SVCC.


SVCC Graduates Truck Drivers

Graduation was held on November 19,2015 of the Southside Virginia Community College Truck Driver Training School.  

Jason Cutcliff and Don Trammell both graduated with a 4.0 GPA.

Kneeling, l-r, Don Trammell (North Dinwiddie), Georgeann Goldsberry (Blackstone), Rausheen Terry (Farmville) Standing l - r, Dr. Chad Patton, Dean of Career and Occupational Technology, Cedric Drumgold, Jr.(Lawrenceville), Kim Terry (Dillwyn), James Cutcliff (Emporia) and Alan Caviness, Director of Safety & Risk Management with Houff Transfer.  3rd row l-r, Willie Crawley, TDTS Instructor, Jonte' Stith (Alberta), Doug Kemerer, Instructor, Jason Drinkwater, Assistant Instructor and Duncan Quicke, Truck Driver Training School Coordinator.


SVCC Students Inducted Into Phi Theta Kappa

These students are recent inductees into Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, Alpha Theta Chi Chapter on the Christanna Campus of Southside Virginia Community College.  The ceremony was held November 2, 2015.  PTK is the international honor society of two-year colleges with students required to maintain a grade point average of not less than 3.5.  The new inductees are (Front Row, Left to Right) Advisor Tiffany Griffin, Ciara Cifers of Emporia, Cade Hamm of South Hill, Saquanna Price of Freeman, Christopher Hayes of Nelson, Terence Hardy of Clarksville, Olivia Tanner of LaCrosse, Madilynne Tanner of LaCrosse, Christina Beale of South Boston, Kayla Robinson of Kenbrige, Tiffany Hawkins of Lawrenceville and Leslie Cline, Advisor. (Back Row, L to R) Morgan Dianis of Emporia, Dallas Phelps of Jarratt, Jessica Buchanan of Kenbridge, Donovan Burkhardt of South Hill, Jasmine Berry of South Hill, Colton Seamans of Clarksville, and Delaney Basso of Blackstone.  


SVCC to Offer Forklift Train the Trainer Course

This Forklift Train the Trainer Workshop is designed for powered industrial vehicle operators. Topics covered include: Basic Safety Principles, PIV accident causes, usage for unintended or non-designed purposes, exceeding capacity, inattention by operator or pedestrian, using defective equipment, horseplay, defective equipment, OSHA, specific operator training with

video, PowerPoint, and/or handbook, classroom and practical testing, testing by vehicle type, licensing for specific vehicle type, documenting the raining/testing, 3 places individual file, license, and training session records, company policy and training/operations, PPE requirements eye, fall protection, hard hats, etc., and sources for additional training material/information.

Who should attend? Lead safety officers and trainers at companies that use powered forklifts. Participants will learn procedures on how to train and certify their own company employees.


Pre-registration for non-credit classes is required by contacting

Angela McClintock by email at or

 by phone at 434-949-1026.

  Date: Thursday, December 3, 2015

Time: 10 am - 4 pm | Fee: $89 (Includes booklets)

Location: Clarksville Enrichment Complex

1567 Noblin Farm Road, Clarksville, VA


SVCC Student Places Second in National Competition

Southside Virginia Community College graduate Jonathan Kelly of Crewe, Virginia won Second Place in the Technology & Maintenance Council’s National 2015 Future Tech Competition held in Orlando, Florida recently.   Kelly, along with nine other students from various schools, was sponsored by Wal-Mart Transportation for the event.   Kelly competed with 38 students from Tech schools around the nation such as Wyoming Tech, Lincoln Tech, Forsyth Tech and Mid Florida Tech.  This is the second year of the Future Tech competition as the industry tries to promote future technician development by getting the next generations involved.

 With a total of 13 stations such as ASE written, electrical, lighting systems, torque, fasteners, drive belts and wheel end, he received the top score in six of the 13 stations as well as reserve champion overall. 

Bryan Lewis, a part time instructor in the Diesel Tech program at SVCC and winner of numerous professional Super Tech titles, was a training facilitator for the event held in Orlando, Florida.  Prizes won by Kelly included a Cornwell tool box and tools, Imperial cordless flash light and numerous other cash prizes.

A graduate of the Diesel Tech program, Kelly is currently enrolled in the college’s Automotive  program.  He has worked part time for the past eight months for Automotive Excellence  in Blackstone. 

The Diesel Technician Program is offered at the Pickett site of SVCC.

Kelly is the son of Jarrett and Andrea Kelly.


Dr. Dalton Named Dean at SVCC

A new Dean of Humanities, Social Science and Business will begin duties at Southside Virginia Community College in November.  Dr. Tara Carter, Vice President of Academics and Student Services, announced that Dr. Dixie Watts Dalton, current Professor of Agribusiness, has accepted the position.

Dr. Dalton grew up on a 150-acre family farm in Lunenburg County.  She earned her B.S. and M.S. degrees from Virginia Tech in Agricultural Economics and her PhD from Duke University in Economics. She has served the last five years as professor and program director of the agribusiness program at Southside Virginia Community College.  She and her husband, Johnny, own a small cow-calf herd in Kenbridge and have a hunting supply business.

Prior to coming home to Southside in the fall of 2010 to give leadership to the new agribusiness program, she spent seventeen years in her teaching and extension position in Virginia Tech’s Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics.  In 2003, the university awarded her its Alumni Award for Excellence in Teaching and its Alumni Award for Excellence in Advising. At the state level, she has received the Virginia Agribusiness Council’s Special Recognition of an Individual Award, Virginia Farm Bureau’s Service to Agriculture Award, and the Virginia Cooperative Council’s Cooperative Education Leadership Award.  At the national level, she has received teaching awards from the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture Association and the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.  She has published numerous journal and popular press articles and has made hundreds of presentations around the state and nation, as well as in the United Kingdom, Spain, Canada, and South Africa.  In March 2015, she was selected as Virginia Farm Bureau’s Lady Leader, Proudly Promoting Agriculture.

In their spare time, Dixie and Johnny enjoy playing and watching sports.  They both travel extensively throughout Virginia and North Carolina to play competitive slowpitch softball and have competed in the softball World Series in Orlando (Florida), Phoenix (Arizona), and Las Vegas (Nevada).   Her two sons, Kyle and Jacob, are recent SVCC Governor’s School graduates.

Dixie is the daughter of Albert and T.J. Watts of Keysville and the niece of former SVCC business instructor, Barbara “Polly” Beard.



Area eleventh and twelfth-grade high school students and their parents are invited to attend “College Day” at Southside Virginia Community College’s Christanna Campus in Alberta on Wednesday, October 7, 2015, from 2:00 – 3:00 p.m.  This is the Regional College Day program for Brunswick, Mecklenburg, and parts of Lunenburg and Nottoway counties.  Second-year students and graduates of two-year college degree programs are also urged to attend.  Over 50 colleges, universities and special schools will be represented.

Institutions that should be represented include Averett University, Bryant & Stratton College, Christopher Newport University, Chowan University, College of William and Mary, Ferrum College,  George Mason University,  Hampden-Sydney College, Hampton University, James Madison University, Jefferson College of Health Sciences, Johnson & Wales University, Liberty University, Living Arts College, Longwood University,  Lynchburg College, Mary Baldwin College, Mid-Atlantic Christian University, National University, Norfolk State University, North Carolina Wesleyan College, Old Dominion University, ODU Distance Learning, Radford University, Randolph College,  Roanoke College, Shenandoah University,  Southside Virginia Community College,  Sweet Briar College,  The Apprentice School, The Art Institutes, University of Mount Olive,  University of Mary Washington, University of Virginia, University of Virginia’s College at Wise, Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia Military Institute, Virginia Tech, Virginia State University, and William Peace University.  Also in attendance will be a representative from the Virginia Tobacco Region Scholarship.   For more information about “College Day” contact the Admissions Office at SVCC’s Christanna Campus (Phone: 434-949-1014).


Funds to Benefit Apprenticeship Based Training Through SVCC

President Barrack Obama recently named a consortium of four Virginia community colleges — including Southside Virginia Community College — to receive $2.9 million in grant funds to develop and implement an apprenticeship-based jobs training program.

The award, made under the U.S. Department of Labor’s American Apprenticeship Initiative, will teach advanced manufacturing and information technology career skills to both incumbent workers as well as those new to the workforce. Apprenticeship training combines classroom study with on-the-job training.

Partnering with SVCC on this project are fellow consortium members Reynolds Community College and John Tyler Community College, both from the Richmond area, and Danville Community College.  Based on Department of Labor data, as well as regional industry surveys, these colleges share with SVCC a common need to train workers in career pathways such as mechanical engineering technology, computer programming, welding, chemical operations, and database technology, to name but a few of the occupations that will be targeted by the American Apprenticeship grant.

SVCC anticipates that over $600,000 of the $2.9 million award will be directed to SVCC's service region, with the majority of funding going to cover tuition and training costs for participants.  SVCC serves ten counties and one city in the Southside region of the state.

“Strategies like apprenticeship programs are both great for talent development and for sourcing talent for employers,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones. “We want to increase these programs in Virginia to help prepare our workforce, and we congratulate the award recipients.”

Registered Apprenticeships is a training system that produces highly skilled workers to meet the demands of employers competing in a global economy, through a combination of on-the-job training and theoretical classroom instruction. It is a "win-win" approach to workforce development. In addition to industry certifications that apprentices earn through their work study efforts, the programs SVCC will offer through this American Apprenticeship funding will enable participants to earn college credentials as well.

SVCC's Vice President of Workforce Services Keith Harkins's said “This award underscores the commitment SVCC has to serving the employers in Southside Virginia. When we leverage the knowledge and skills of our community partners, everyone benefits."

Employers who would like to participate, as well as current employees and first-time job seekers who would like to develop lifelong career skills can call SVCC at (434) 949-1029, or email for more information.



Those successfully completing the Southside Virginia Community College Machining Skills Certification Program were recognized September 3, 2015 at a ceremony at the Southside Virginia Education Center in Greensville, County.  They are (Left to Right) Nakia Chambliss, John King, J'nai Foreman, Bradley Doke, Tyler Burgan, Javier Lopez and Decorress Parrott.  Another graduate, Anthony Rivera, was unable to attend.


A graduation ceremony was held September 3, 2015 for the first class the Machining Skills Certification Program based at Southside Virginia Community College’s Southside Virginia Education Center location in Greensville County.  A total of eight transitioning active duty soldiers and veterans associated with Fort Lee, Virginia completed the course and obtained five industry certifications through the program.

The program is a  collaboration amongst,   Southside Virginia Community College (SVCC), the Commonwealth Center for Manufacturing (C-CAM), the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center (SVHEC), the Crater Regional Workforce Investment Board (Crater WIB),the Fort Lee Soldier for Life Program and 180 Skills, an online career and technical education curriculum provider.

Bruce Sobczak, Director of Workforce Development for the Commonwealth Center for Manufacturing, talked about how the program came to fruition calling it “First Say Yes, a story of innovative collaboration.”  He talked about all the partners that joined forces to make the program a success despite some obstacles.  Students in the program completed 162 online modules plus 300-plus hours  of lab work. 

Command Sargent Major Clarence Richardson noted that the program is great for the military as it downsizes

“This Is a great opportunity to take care of our service men and women and it means a lot to us,” he said.

Certificates were presented to the graduates by Dr. Al Roberts, SVCC President.  The graduates are Tyler Burgan, Nakia Chambliss, Bradley Doke, J’nai Foreman, John King, Javier Lopez, Decorress Parrott and Anthony Rivera.

Douglas Beaver, instructor for the Machining Program said, “Many of our students are continuing with the second part of the Program while working in the field.  The average hourly wage is $16.93 per hour.”

Presenting the certificates are (Left to Right) Evan Feniman, Executive Director, Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission, Dr. Al Roberts, SVCC President, with J'nai Foreman, and Sergeant Major Clarence Richardson.



The 19th Annual Taste of Brunswick Festival will be held Saturday, October 10 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Southside Virginia Community College, Christanna  Campus., Alberta.   One of the highlights of the festival is the Brunswick Stew Cook-off and more than 20 crews put their hats in the ring to be declared the best in the very competitive cook-off.

Don’t miss this event attended by thousands each year.  Admission and parking is free.  Events include Car and Tractor Show, variety of entertainment including Steve Owens and Summertime, playing beach music and southern soul and rock and roll, bluegrass bands, rides and games, tractor rides, horse exhibition with Rachel Jackson providing Truck and Roman Riding, Civil War Reenactment, stage coach rides, food, vendors, organ grinder, arts and crafts, Brunswick fest t-shirts and hats, kids train rides and plenty of good ole Brunswick Stew.

Mark your calendar now for the biggest event of the year for Brunswick County!!


SVCC Offers Continuing Education Class

Online Continuing Education Course for Licensed Nurses!!! Pap Smear Management

Fall 2015 | Online NUR 295 Class Dates: October 1, 2015-December 11, 2015

This continuing education online course is for licensed registered nurses who want to improve their knowledge of pap smear management based on the ASCCP (American Society for Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology) guidelines. This is a self-directed review of the current evidence based guidelines for health care providers that includes the 2013 guidelines, management of normal and abnormal pap smears (age specific), risk factors, prevention and patient education strategies for the licensed nurse. At the completion of each module, participants will complete a brief examination of the information presented.

Participants that successfully complete this course will be awarded 15 contact hours (1 college credit) towards their license renewal.

Register by September 28th, 2015 by contacting: Angela McClintock at 434-949-1026 or

NUR 295 (68305-A6) 1 Credit Hour | In State Tuition: $145.00 | Out of State: $339.60





Faculty members from Southside Virginia Community College were recognized with Excellence

Awards for Learning Environment during 2015.   Those receiving this award are (Left to Right) Kristen Beekwilder, Dr. Dixie Dalton, Jonette Talbott, Felicia Omick, Karen Hopkins and Sharon Freeman.  

Annual Faculty Awards were presented by Southside Virginia Community College and the recipients are (Left to Right) Dr. Dixie Dalton, Kristen Beekwilder, Dr. Christy Lowery-Carter, Richard Bell and Tommy Wright.

Faculty receiving the Professional Excellence Award from SVCC are (Front Row Left to Right) Crystal Jones, Sharon Freeman, James Wilkerson, and Karen Fisher and (Back Row, L to R) Martha Reed, Katrina Wells, Vincent Brown and Joan Tuck. 


SVCC Recognizes Long Serving Employees

Five Years of Service

Southside Virginia Community College recently recognized employees who had served the Commonwealth of Virginia for five years.  Service awards are given at each five year mark to the faithful employee of a state agency.  Those from SVCC receiving Five Year Recognition are (Left to Right) David Braun, Tiffany Griffin, Dr. Jackie Daniel, Dr. Anne Hayes, Pam Jackson, Rebecca Laben, Makiko Malone and Chad Rogers.

Ten Years of Service

Southside Virginia Community College recently recognized employees who had served the Commonwealth of Virginia for ten years.  Service awards are given at each five year mark to the faithful employee of a state agency.  Those from SVCC receiving Ten Year Recognition are (Left to Right) Linda Allen, Karen Fisher, Melissa Arthur, Sandra Bacon, Gary Cifers, Allen Fulks, Ricky Lyles, Leonard Martin, Angela McClintock and Mary Rodriguez.

Fifteen Years of Service

Southside Virginia Community College recently recognized employees who had served the Commonwealth of Virginia for 15 years.  Service awards are given at each five year mark to the faithful employee of a state agency.  Those from SVCC receiving 15Year Recognition are (Left to Right) John Hicks, Bernadette Battle, Robin Daniel, Shannon Feinman, Angela Jackson, John Duty, Dr. Chad Patton, David Smith and Rosa Townsend.

Twenty Years of Service

Southside Virginia Community College recently recognized employees who had served the Commonwealth of Virginia for twenty years.  Service awards are given at each five year mark to the faithful employee of a state agency.  Those from SVCC receiving Twenty Year Recognition are (Left to Right) Buddy Hyde and Dr. Percy Richardson.

Twenty-Five Years of Service

Southside Virginia Community College recently recognized employees who had served the Commonwealth of Virginia for twenty-five years.  Service awards are given at each five year mark to the faithful employee of a state agency.  Those from SVCC receiving Twenty-Five Year Recognition are (Left to Right) Rodnita Blackwell, Crystal Jones, Diane Nipper and Louise Ogburn.

Thirty Years of Service

Southside Virginia Community College recently recognized employees who had served the Commonwealth of Virginia for thirty years.  Service awards are given at each five year mark to the faithful employee of a state agency.  Those from SVCC receiving Thirty Year Recognition are Toni Lambert and Pardha Gadiyaram.

Forty Years of Service

Southside Virginia Community College recently recognized employees who had served the Commonwealth of Virginia for forty years.  Service awards are given at each five year mark to the faithful employee of a state agency.  Those from SVCC receiving Forty Year Recognition is Rhina Jones.


Teaching Peer and Fellow Recognition

Southside Virginia Community College honored adjunct faculty members on August 19th at the Estes Community Center in Chase City.  In order to be named a Teaching Peer, an adjunct faculty member must have taught at least 30 credits over a minimum of five years and have above average evaluations.  A Teaching Fellow must have taught at least 60 credits over a ten-year period and have excellent evaluations.  The adjunct faculty members recognized as Teaching Peers and Fellows were:

Teaching Peers: (L to R) Joanne Catron, Karen Osborne, Jeffrey Lazenby, Angela Mills

Teaching Fellows: (L to R) Susan Zachensky-Walthall, James Popek, Danna Revis



Subscribe to RSS - SVCC

Emporia News

Stories on 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. 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 is copyright 2005-2019 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  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 is hosted as a community Service by Telpage.  Visit their website at 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.)