Scholarly and Creative Engagement for VCCS staff, faculty, and administration comprises activities specifically associated with the employee’s recognized area of expertise. Examples of criteria for faculty activities are listed on the Faculty Evaluation Plan > Scholarly and Creative Engagement. For staff Performance Evaluation, refer to Learning Goals on the Employee Work Profile: Learning Goals.

From the VCCS Professional Development Office

The Virginia Community College System Office of Professional Development (OPD) provides a cutting edge professional development program for faculty, staff and administrative leaders who lead and support student success efforts across Virginia’s 23 colleges, with 40 campus locations throughout the state of Virginia.

OPD aims to achieve the highest system-wide standards for excellence in professional development, providing a strategic, long-term vision and pedagogically advanced, culturally inspired, and academically rigorous programming that drives faculty and institutional excellence in Virginia’s Community Colleges.

OPD programs serve more than 2,000 full-time faculty, 9,000 adjunct faculty, and 3,000 classified staff, providing a robust, multi-faceted professional development program that supports outstanding teaching and learning; addresses the diverse needs and expectations of educators; explores the intersection of innovative technologies with classroom and student success; and resolves pressing workforce development, business and community demands. Categories of professional development offerings are listed on the VCCS Professional Development site and include:

The mission of the VCCS Professional Development Office is to work in partnership with our colleges to provide sustainable opportunities that enrich personal and professional growth and development in the categories of:

  • Career: to improve essential alignments and transitions in the evolution of meaningful work, compelling service, and professional success
  • Instructional: to increase student success through the intentional innovation and enhancement of effective teaching, learning, and assessment techniques and strategies
  • Disciplinary: To increase currency, relevancy, and engagement through the expansion of knowledge and skills within the academic discipline or professional specialty
  • Organizational: Advance the mission of Virginia’s community colleges by cultivating the talent and momentum of instructional and administrative leaders
  • Workforce: Build foundations to compete and contribute to the global economy through career, instructional, discipline and organizational capacity building and development

Virginia Western Professional Development

Virginia Western supports all VCCS opportunities and encourages faculty and staff to enjoy these offerings by submitting a yearly application detailing the events. When funding is available, the application is available online May 5, with a deadline of May 15. The electronic application will be available on this site, with reminders and links on the Daily Bulletin.

(All applications are reviewed by deans and supervisors in each school. Approved applications are forwarded to the VWCC Professional Development Committee, VWCC VP for Academic and Student Affairs, deans, supervisors, staff, and faculty)  for final confirmation. Late applications will be considered, but at a reduced rate and with respect to unused funds.

Categories in the application include the following:

VCCS Activities

VCCS activities are generally held yearly or are commonly held, such as New Horizons Conference and Peer Group Conferences, for which registration fees, lodging and meals are paid in part or full by the VCCS.  These requests will be funded regardless of other requests. (VCCA and HIRE conferences are not included in this section.)

Please note that Peer Group and Work Group Conferences are usually fully funded by the VCCS. (For a full list of Peer Groups and contact/conference information, see VCCS PDC > Peer Groups.

Click here for more from the VCCS Professional Development Office.


Examples of these are the VCCA Conference or the HIRE Conference.

Educational Assistance & Continuous Learning

Educational Assistance is financial support, through Professional Development Funds, for approved educational courses or the acquisition of job-related degrees, professional certifications or licenses. It may be granted for a single course or combined with educational leave. The financial support shall consist of the cost of tuition and mandatory fees.

In cases with educational leave, full pay, partial pay or leave without pay may be provided by Human Resources. Typically, Educational Assistance will be for those courses taken at other institutions of higher education and those that do not meet the definition of Continuous Learning courses.

Continuous Learning Courses are credit hour courses offered at the community college to employees at no cost. The courses must be offered by Virginia Western Community College, and may be job related or non-job related, part of a degree program, or for professional development; and should have application to the college’s mission. To qualify for continuous learning assistance, courses shall not to be taken as a class audit; enrollment must be as a normal, graded student. The courses may be job related or non-job related; however, they should have application to the college’s mission.

Professional Development Grants

Special projects that include internal (VCCS and Educational Foundation) and external funding are considered professional development opportunities, and are open to staff and faculty for a variety of opportunities.

The Grants & Special Projects Office at VWCC contains information and procedures for grant proposals.

The VCCS Professional Development Office contains information and procedures for grant proposals for the Paul Lee Professional Development Grant and the Paul Lee Mini-Workshop Grant.

The Commonwealth of Virginia Learning Center

The Commonwealth of Virginia Learning Center (COVLC) was established to meet the educational, training, and learning needs of our employees and our community. The COVLC is a resource for training, learning, and career development for our college. It provides a clear path to learning and professional development through Online Learning, Managing Virginia Program (MVP), Performance Management and Professional Development.

As an employee of VWCC, you will find a wide variety of training and developmental opportunities designed to promote your professional and personal growth.

Email Sarah Miller in Human Resources at to have your user rights established in the COVLC. In this email, please include your full name, the division you will be teaching in or department you are working for, and your current email address. Once you have been registered in the COVLC, you will receive a confirmation email with your login and password. It is recommended you change your password the first time you login to the COVLC.

COVLC Overview (YouTube)

Required Training

Within your first 60 days of employment, you are required to take the following online training sessions on COVLC:

TopicCOVLC KeywordCourse Title
Alcohol & Other Drugs Policy 1.05AlcoholDHRM – HR Policy – Alcohol & Other Drugs
Ethics in the Workplace Online TrainingEthicsVWCC Ethics in the Workplace Online Training
FERPAFERPAVWCC FERPA Tutorial for Faculty and Staff
Fire Extinguisher TrainingVWCCVWCC Fire Extinguisher Training
Grievance Procedure (Full-time Classified only)GrievanceEDR – Workplace Dispute Resolution Overview Courses
OSHA StandardsOSHAVWCC – OSHA New Labels and SDS Training (December 2013)
Preventing Workplace HarassmentHarassmentDHRM – HR Policy – Prevenging Workplace Harassment
Preventing Workplace ViolenceWorkplace ViolenceDHRM – HR Policy – Preventing Workplace Violence (for employees)
Slip, Trip and Fall PreventionSlipDHRM – WC – Slip, Trip and Fall Prevention
VDEM – Terrorism & Security Awareness OrientationTerrorismTerrorism Security Awareness Training