Virginia Western Educational Foundation’s new workforce credentials scholarships help non-credit students seeking employment

The Virginia Western Community College Educational Foundation has awarded its new Workforce Credentials Scholarship to the first two recipients. Marvin E. Jennings of Boones Mill and Harold A. Young of Roanoke recently received financial assistance in pursuing certification in the College’s Industrial Maintenance Technician (IMT) Program.

The Workforce Credentials Scholarship, established in 2014, is designed to support Virginia Western students seeking non-credit, industry-recognized credentials in fields such as welding and maintenance, mechanical systems, hydraulic and pneumatic systems, and electrical control systems. Students engaged in non-credit coursework are not eligible for federal financial aid.

“With this scholarship, we are addressing a growing need for students who want to pursue credentials yet face significant financial obstacles,” said Dr. Angela Garcia Falconetti, executive director of the Educational Foundation and Vice President of Institutional Advancement at Virginia Western. “We are supporting a statewide effort to increase noncredit opportunities for students.”

The Workforce Credentials Scholarship will support educational assistance such as tuition, books and fees for students facing life circumstances that affect their ability to fund their education. Applicants encouraged to apply are: workers who have been laid off or lost their jobs for reasons other than misconduct; military personnel discharged honorably; those who are unemployed or underemployed; those who are unemployed due to a medical condition or disability; and independent business owners.

“Without the funding provided, I would remain unemployed ‑ at best, underemployed,” said Jennings, an honorably discharged infantryman. “With this funding I will be able to complete IMT training and obtain employment in the field of industrial maintenance. The funds will create life opportunities previously unavailable to me.”

Young was laid off after being employed at ITT Exelis for 15 years. During his search for a new career he discovered he needed new skillsets and credentials.  The scholarship helped help Young pay for class supplies.

“I’m currently exceeding expectations and I feel very confident that, once I complete my Industrial Maintenance Technician certification, I will be able to add significant value to an employer,” Young said.

The Workforce Credentials Scholarships will be available year-round. For more information, contact one of Virginia Western Community College’s Career Transition coaches:  Deb Squire, (540) 857-6296, dsquire@virginiawestern.edu; or Amanda Decker, (540) 857-6279, adecker@virginiawestern.edu.

Posted on February 27, 2015 in Campus News, Educational Foundation | Permalink

Call for nominations for VWCC Distinguished Alumni Award

For many, the road to lifetime achievement started at Virginia Western Community College.  The Virginia Western Alumni Association established the Distinguished Alumni Award in 2006 to recognize those alumni who have achieved outstanding success and made a lasting impact on their community. The award is intended to showcase the diversity of Virginia Western graduates and their impact on the community.

The 2014 Distinguished Alumni honorees were J. David Wine (’73), a Roanoke entrepreneur and founder of Advanced Healthcare Services; and Craig S. Harris (’00), chief of police at Virginia Western Community College.

Anne Hogan (’76), a previous honoree, serves as chairwoman of the Virginia Western Alumni Association.

Eligibility requirements:

To be eligible for nomination, the candidate must:

  • Be a graduate of or have completed a minimum of two semesters at Virginia Western Community College.
  • Have attained extraordinary distinction and success in his or her profession or life.
  • Be a person of such integrity and stature that the College will take pride in his or her recognition.
  • Have attained regional, statewide or national prominence and significant involvement in civic, cultural or charitable affairs.

How to nominate:

Anyone may nominate a Virginia Western Community College alumni for this award by completing a nomination form.  This form can be copied or downloaded from the College’s website at www.virginiawestern.edu/alumni.  Two letters of reference are also required.


Nominations must be received by Feb. 28, 2015.

For more information, contact Amanda Mansfield, Donor Relations Coordinator, Virginia Western Community College Educational Foundation, at amansfield@virginiawestern.edu or (540) 857-6962.




Posted on January 21, 2015 in Campus News, Educational Foundation | Permalink

Virginia Western Educational Foundation announces 2015 Board of Directors

The Virginia Western Community College Educational Foundation is pleased to announce new members and officers for its 2015 Board of Directors. The board members, who offer guidance and expertise on campaigns such as the Community College Access Program (CCAP), include leaders from a wide array of Roanoke Region titans such as Advance Auto Parts, Carilion Clinic, Virginia Tech, Rockydale Quarries, Optical Cable Corp., Hall Associates and more.

Eight new at-large members have joined the Board of Directors:  Nancy Howell Agee, Chief Executive Officer and President, Carilion Clinic; J. Spencer Frantz, Principal, Graham White Manufacturing Co.; William Farrell, Chief Executive Officer, Berglund Automotive Group; Leon Harris, President,  Keltech Inc.; Drew Parker, Executive Vice President, Carter Machinery; Garnett Smith, CEO, Advance Auto Parts (retired);  Dr. Charles W. Steger, President Emeritus, Virginia Tech; and Nicholas F. Taubman, President, Mozart Investments.

The Board of Directors officers for 2015 are:  President, J. Kenneth Randolph, Rockydale Quarries Corp.; Vice President, Warner Dalhouse; Secretary, Bertram Spetzler, M.D.; Treasurer, Neil D. Wilkin Jr., Optical Cable Corp.; and Immediate Past President, Edwin C. Hall, Hall Associates Inc.

“Each of these individuals has contributed much to our region as they have pursued their distinguished careers,” said Dr. Angela M. Garcia Falconetti, Executive Director of the Virginia Western Community College Educational Foundation and Vice President of Institutional Advancement. “I am certain their collective insight, governance and leadership will propel us forward as we address Virginia Western’s strategic mission and goals for 2015 and beyond.”

The new at-large board members began their terms with the Educational Foundation’s new fiscal year, January 2015. Existing members completing the at-large board are: James W. Arend, Glen C. Combs, Nick Conte, Steve Cronemeyer, David Dantzler, Tammy Moss Finley, Randy Foley, W. Heywood Fralin, Maryellen F. Goodlatte, Kent S. Greenawalt, Jeffrey A. Marks, Tom M. Robertson Jr., J. David Wine and Barton J. Wilner.

"The leadership of the Educational Foundation board members will open doors of opportunities for thousands of Virginia Western's students," says Dr. Robert H. Sandel, President of Virginia Western Community College.

Support CCAP through Diploma Campaign at area Kroger and Stop-In Food Stores

At any local Kroger or Stop-In Food Stores during the month of May, customers may donate $1 or $5 to support Virginia Western’s Community College Access Program (CCAP) and make college possible for local high school graduates.

The Diploma Campaign launched May 4, and Kroger and Stop-In Food Stores are partnering with Virginia Western to support CCAP and help bolster the economic base of the Roanoke Valley.

“College is possible for all local high school graduates,” President Robert H. Sandel said. “At Virginia Western, students get access to a quality education and can go directly into the workforce or transfer to a four-year institution. Through CCAP, they can get a degree or certificate and create a stronger regional economy.”

CCAP allows local high school graduates to attend Virginia Western for two years cost-free. Administered by the Virginia Western Educational Foundation, CCAP now serves Botetourt, Craig, Franklin and Roanoke Counties and the Cities of Roanoke and Salem.

CCAP supports as many students as possible based on student need and available funds. The program was launched in 2008 with the pilot phase in Salem and expanded to Roanoke City in 2009. In Fall 2011, graduates of Franklin County High School began participating in CCAP, and other localities joined in Fall 2013. Virginia Western is in the process of accepting the 2014-15 class of CCAP students.

Graduating seniors of participating high schools are eligible to apply for CCAP. Applicants must have attended the high school in, and have been a resident of, the participating locality in which they are applying for at least two years prior to graduation. The application process for 2013-14 is now closed and the application process for 2014-15 opens January 1, 2015.

Posted on May 5, 2014 in Campus News, Educational Foundation | Permalink

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