Virginia Western 2016 Distinguished Alumni Award Call for Nominations

The Virginia Western Educational Foundation and the Virginia Western Alumni Association are calling for nominations for the 2016 Distinguished Alumni Award. The annual recipient or recipients will receive the award at a special Scholarship Awards Ceremony April 6, and a plaque will be placed on the Virginia Western Distinguished Alumni Wall outside Whitman Theater.

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 prestigious award is intended to showcase the diversity of Virginia Western graduates and their range of influence on our region.

The 2015 Distinguished Alumni honoree was Deborah A. Yancey (’97 and ’98), Dean of Business, Technology and Trades at Virginia Western Community College.

Prior honorees include:  

2014 - Chief Craig S. Harris ’00 and J. David Wine ’73

2013 - Cheryl Cunningham ’86

2012 - Anne Hogan ’76

2011 - Carolyn Webster ’81

2010 - Russell H. Ellis ’80

2009 - Shirl D. Lamanca ’75 and Dennis R. Cronk ’72

2008 - Donna L. Mitchell ’81

2007 - Dr. Kent A. Murphy and Charlotte C. Tyson ’84

2006 - John B. Williamson III ’75

Anne Hogan (’76), serves as chairwoman of the Alumni Association. The Association fosters a mutually beneficial relationship and interaction between the College, its alumni, and the community; connecting with the college community to recognize and foster the diverse talents and successes of Virginia Western graduates.

Distinguished Alumni 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 alumna/us or former student for this award by completing a nomination form. This form can be submitted online 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. 26, 2016.

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 29, 2016 in Educational Foundation | Permalink

Welding classes to be held in state-of-the-art lab at Greenfield Center

Virginia Western Community College announces that its Welding and Metal Processing Program will hold classes beginning in Spring Semester 2016 at the Greenfield Education and Training Center in Daleville. The move to the Botetourt County facility from labs at Virginia Western’s Roanoke campus will allow for more intensive industry-related content that can lead directly to an American Welding Society (AWS) certification.

The welding labs at the Greenfield Center are AWS certified, so students can prepare for and test for their industry recognized certification upon completing coursework. The Greenfield Center is located at 57 South Center Dr., Daleville, VA 24083. Spring classes begin on Jan. 11 and students can register and apply at www.virginiawestern.edu.

Career Studies in Welding and Metal Processing offers instruction in the principles and practices of welding processes. Successful completion of the program provides sufficient training for entry into the field of production-type welding. Students have access to the latest instructional and practical experiences in a high-technology, modern shop facility.

Welding is a high-demand industry with a national shortage expected to reach 300,000 by 2020 according the AWS. Based on 2012 median wages for Virginia from statewide labor market information, welders with an industry certificate earned $39,168 per year.

For more information about Welding and Metal Processing at Virginia Western, contact program head Gary Young at gyoung@virginiawestern.edu or 540-857-6181.

Posted on December 17, 2015 in Campus News | Permalink

Steger to serve as Chairman of Virginia Western Educational Foundation

Dr. Charles W. Steger, President Emeritus of Virginia Tech, has been named Chairman of the Virginia Western Community College Educational Foundation Board of Directors for 2016.

Steger joins other local leaders serving as officers of the Educational Foundation: Neil D. Wilkin Jr., Vice Chairman; Dr. Bertram Spetzler, Secretary; William J. Farrell II, Treasurer; and J. Kenneth Randolph, Immediate Past-President. Dr. Robert H. Sandel, president of Virginia Western, and Gerald Burgess, Local Advisory Board Chairman, round out the Board leadership.

The Board of Directors guides the Educational Foundation’s mission of supporting student scholarships, faculty development and capital projects at Virginia Western. Board members have been the driving force behind Virginia Western’s Community College Access Program (CCAP), a successful public-private partnership that provides up to two years of tuition to eligible students.

“Our board members, led by Dr. Steger, are committed to building Virginia Western into a leader of regional economic development,”  said Dr. Angela M. Garcia Falconetti, Executive Director of the Educational Foundation and Vice President of Institutional Advancement at Virginia Western. “Their support is critical as the College approaches its 50th anniversary and makes plans for further expansion.”

Existing at-large members of the Educational Foundation Board are: Nancy Agee, Glen C. Combs, Nick Conte, Steve Cronemeyer, Warner Dalhouse, David Dantzler, Tammy Moss Finley, Byron Randolph Foley, W. Heywood Fralin, J. Spencer Frantz, Edwin C. Hall, Leon P. Harris, Jeffrey A. Marks, Drew Parker, Tom M. Robertson Jr., Garnett E. Smith, Nicholas F. Taubman, J. David Wine and Barton J. Wilner.

Posted on December 15, 2015 in Educational Foundation | Permalink

CDL program boasts 86 percent job placement rate for year

Virginia Western Community College announces that through its partnership with CDS Tractor Trailer Training, 251 students graduated and received a Class A Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) in 2015 with a job placement rate of 86 percent. As the shortage of truck drivers continues to grow nationally, Virginia Western and CDS plan to maintain their partnership and expand opportunities for future students.

According to an analysis by the American Trucking Association released in October 2015, the trucking industry was short about 38,000 drivers in 2014 and was expected to be short nearly 48,000 by the end of 2015. If the current trend holds, the shortage may balloon to almost 175,000 by 2024.

The CDL program at Virginia Western consists of 160 hours of classroom and hands-on training to prepare students to work in the industry. The priority is to help students earn their license and become employed. There are currently 10 to 15 companies that recruit with CDS onsite each month, and there is a network of more than 100 companies to place student in local, regional or over the road opportunities.

“I’m happy I was a part of this program,” said Leonard Casey, a recent graduate. “It helped me line up a great job that wouldn’t have been possible before.”

More than 75 percent of the 281 students who enrolled in in the CDL program in 2015 graduated and received a Class A License. That level of success is a testament to the strong curriculum.

“The students who come through this program are well-prepared to join this high-demand industry,” said Dan Semones, program coordinator in Virginia Western’s Workforce Solutions. “CDS Tractor Trailer Training has the experienced instructors who can help students earn the credentials they need to get ahead and earn a great salary.”

Individuals interested in the CDL program are encouraged to contact Crystal Kennedy at (540) 857-6188 or ckennedy@virginiawestern.edu.

Posted on in Campus News | Permalink

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