Inaugural event hosted by Paul D. Camp Community College focuses on retention

Symposium Antwan PerryAntwan Perry of Germanna Community College leads a motivational presentation with students during the Student Success Symposium.
Paul D. Camp Community College’s STEPS program hosted its first Student Success Symposium recently at the Regional Workforce Development Center with 145 faculty, staff, administrators and students attending. STEPS is an acronym for Students Transitioning through Education Programs Successfully.
The event, sponsored by the Office of the Vice President of Academic and Student Development, The Faculty Senate, The Classified Staff Council, and the Planning and Effectiveness Committee in collaboration with the Chancellor’s College Success Coach Initiative, was focused on ways to help increase the number of students graduating with an associate’s degree, career readiness or other certificates; or transferring to other places of higher learning to continue their education.
“This event not only provided students with information about motivation and success, but also served as a professional development opportunity for our faculty and staff, to increase the effectiveness of their roles in the classroom and offices,” said PDCCC College Success Coach Laura Clark.
The symposium was highlighted by a presentation from Dr. Bethanie H. Tucker, professor of education at Averett University in Danville, co-author of Understanding and Engaging Under-Resourced College Students and specialist with the company, aha! Process. She spoke to faculty, staff and administrators about the “hidden rules” of social class and its implication in the classroom. She emphasized the importance of defining what respect looks and sounds like, and realizing that “some students are living in the moment,” Tucker said. “Instructors should ask students, ‘What is your plan?’”
In her session with students, Tucker encouraged students to consider what resources are necessary to be successful in college and the professional working world. She also shared practical steps to maintaining motivation.
Also featured was guest speaker, Antwan L. Perry, director of the Early College Academy and special projects manager with the Office of Student Success at Germanna Community College. A former student success coach at the community college, Perry is a first-generation college graduate and is on schedule to complete his Doctor of Education degree from Regent University at the end of this year. He presented “Engaging Black and Minority Males on the College Campus.” He spoke about African-American male student achievement, noting, “The graduation rate of black males is extremely low,” which he attributed to his belief that stereotypes play a significant role in the low success rate. He conducted a workshop for black males, allowing them to recommend best practices for college success.
During his session with students, Perry shared compelling stories from his personal journey that helped the audience know that success is possible with motivation and persistence.
Students also had the opportunity to learn about leadership from Ellis Cofield, student activities officer and full-time student at PDCCC. He shared several ways that leadership skills can be developed during the college years and honed in the workplace for years to follow.
Working in mixed groups, students and faculty worked through case studies of situations that often present barriers to student success and retention in the college setting.
Examining barriers that our students face gives us a better understanding of how to help them get enrolled and stay enrolled throughout the academic process,” said College Success Coach Dr. Sandra Walker.
According to Vice President of Academic and Student Development Dr. Tara Atkins-Brady, the event also supports the Chancellor’s plan for community colleges to triple the number of credentials awarded by 2021.
“I am extremely proud of our college success coach team,” she said. “The symposium was very informative and was designed to assist everyone at the college. We had a great number of participants and look forward to offering additional symposia in the future.”

Symposium Bethanie TuckerDr. Bethanie Tucker led a session for faculty, staff and administrators that focused on “Understanding and Engaging Under-Resourced College Students.”


Paul D. Camp Community College Holds 45th Commencement Ceremony May 13, 2016

44th PDCCC Commencement 59 webChristien Powell of the Southampton High School Marching Band led the procession during last year’s commencement at PDCCC.
Paul D. Camp Community College will hold its 45th commencement exercises on Friday, May 13, at the Regional Workforce Development Center, 100 North College Drive, Franklin. Approximately 250 students will be awarded degrees and certificates.
In addition to the students’ honors, a special award will be announced during the ceremony.
The 2016 J. Paul Councill Jr. Community Service Award will be presented. The awardee is selected based on significant contributions to PDCCC and its service region. The award is a vehicle for expressing appreciation to key community leaders who have given exemplary service to the college and the community. It also promotes greater community awareness of college support from key leaders.
Last year’s recipient was Roberta Naranjo, who served for more than four decades on the Southampton County School Board. She has been an advocate of PDCCC, particularly of the Nursing Program.
Other past recipients include: Lydia Duke, Barbara Mease, June Fleming, the Camp family, Bobby Worrell, Carroll Story, Judy Begland and Warren Beale.
Honor students, veterans and dual enrollment graduates will be recognized as well during the ceremony, which begins at 7 p.m. For more information, contact the Office of Institutional Advancement at 757-569-6790.

44th PDCCC CommencementEllis “Trey” Cofield III, from left, Edwin Delgado, Pamela Reid, seated, Miranda Prentice and Courtney Wright note a proud moment after the 2015 graduation ceremony.


Paul D. Camp Community College philanthropy leader honored at luncheon

Leadership in Philanthropy groupDesiree Urquhart, PDCCC grants coordinator; from left, Dr. Renee Felts, vice president for institutional advancement and executive director of the PDCCC Foundation; LaVonne Ellis, member of the state board for community colleges; Stacy Pauley, PDCCC executive assistant, Dr. Bill Aiken, interim president of PDCCC, Dr. Deborah DiCroce, president and CEO of the Hampton Roads Community Foundation and Dr. Glenn DuBois, chancellor of the VCCS.
Hampton Roads Community Foundation and its President and CEO, Dr. Deborah DiCroce, have earned the 2016 Chancellor’s Award for Leadership in Philanthropy. The nomination for the award was made by Paul D. Camp Community College. The award was presented at a luncheon ceremony at the Country Club of Virginia on Tuesday, April 19.
Hosted by the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education, the 11th annual event honors leading philanthropists from each of Virginia’s 23 community colleges, as well as the statewide foundation. This year’s class of distinguished philanthropy leaders has contributed a combined total of more than $11 million to Virginia’s Community Colleges.
The Hampton Roads Community Foundation has been a long-time supporter of Paul D. Camp Community College. In 2014-15, the foundation committed $148,146 to launch a regional licensed practical nursing program at the college. This provided a much-needed service, as the nursing program was dropped by area public schools due to budgetary constraints.
By recognizing this need and helping fill that gap between educational and employment opportunities in the area, HRCF has brought students’ dreams to a reality and changed lives in the community.
“In addition, HRCF has played integral roles in funding PDCCC’s career coach and GED programs, which are demonstrating great effectiveness in our market,” said Dr. Renee Felts, vice president for institutional advancement and executive director of the PDCCC Foundation.
In addition to helping community college students continue their education, donors play a critical role in Virginia’s workforce development efforts, according to keynote speaker Mike Petters, VFCCE board member and president and CEO of Huntington Ingalls Industries.
“By supporting the foundation, you support access, affordability and student success at every one of Virginia’s Community Colleges across the state from Big Stone Gap in southwestern Virginia to Melfa on the Eastern Shore-and 21 community colleges in between,” he said.


PDCCC summer registration under way

Register now for the summer 2016 semester at Paul D. Camp Community College.
Classes begin May 23.
For more information, visit www.pdc.edu/faqs or call the Franklin Campus at 757-569-6700; the Hobbs Suffolk Campus at 757-925-6300; or PDCCC at Smithfield at 757-925-6340.


PDCCC students have breakfast with local legislators

Paul D. Camp Community College was well represented at the Franklin-Southampton Area Chamber of Commerce’s annual Post Legislative Breakfast, Eggs & Issues, on April 13. Breakfast GroupStudents Ricky Glover from left, and Danielle Stauffer, Delegate Rick Morris ( R-64th), Senator L. Louise Lucas,( D-18th), Delegate Roslyn Tyler,( D-75th), student Imani Muhammad, Student Activities Coordinator Eric Benton and student Matthew Seaborne talk after the event. Not pictured is Social Media Strategist Brent Hall, Student Activities Officer Ellis Cofield III and Vice President for Institutional Advancement Dr. Renee Felts.
Muhammad introduced Delegate Tyler during the breakfast, which was sponsored by Dominion and held at Franklin Baptist Church. Individual and business sponsorships enabled the students to attend. “This was an outstanding opportunity,” said Benton. “At the end of the program, students were able to discuss issues with local community leaders and legislators.”


Photography class at Paul D. Camp Community College focuses on composition

Paul D. Camp Community College’s Regional Workforce Development Center is offering an intermediate digital photography class that will emphasize light and composition. The course will be meet Wednesdays, May 4 through 25, from 9:00 a.m. to noon, at the college’s Hobbs Suffolk Campus, 271 Kenyon Road, in room 111.
Led by award-winning photographer Shirley Whitenack, the class will be comprised of lecture, demonstration, photographing on location and photographing inside using backdrops.
“We will cover compositional techniques, lens selection, filters, flash, flash modifiers and utilizing histograms,” said Whitenack. Although there will be a review of camera functions, participants should have working knowledge of their camera. “There will also be an off-site photo shoot in Old Towne Portsmouth May 11 that will teach students how to fully utilize directional light, determine proper exposure, and exploit depth of field to create dramatic compositions,” she added.
Various light sources will be used and the students will learn to control light and shadow, and use reflectors, selective focus, depth of field and different shooting modes.
Each participant should bring a fully charged digital camera, instruction manual and digital media. The cost is $110. For more information, call the workforce development center office at 757-569-6050.


PDCCC and Mini Pearl Boutique set the stage to highlight the latest fashions, raise funds

Models GroupA Spring Fashion Show, sponsored by Paul D. Camp Community College and Mini Pearl Boutique of Conway, NC, brought in $650 for the PDCCC Student Emergency Fund, which helps students lighten financial burdens. Dr. Bill Aiken, interim college president, served as master of ceremonies. Highlighting the latest trends in women’s apparel at the college’s Regional Workforce Development Center, from left, were: students Danielle Stauffer, Deja Ellison and Michaela Bernocco, Nita Aiken, wife of Dr. Aiken, and Carol Wright, associate professor in nursing. Not pictured is Dr. Renee Felts, vice president for institutional advancement, who served as model and spearheaded the concept of the fundraiser.


Disaster training provides vital hands-on skills for students at Paul D. Camp Community College

Students in the Emergency Medical Technician and Nursing programs at Paul D. Camp Community College had the opportunity to put their skills to work during mock situations this week.
On Thursday, March 31, students experienced a “zombie apocalypse,” where the senior nursing students became exposed to a zombie virus.
“They worked to discover the origin of the disease during class time and were tasked with developing a comprehensive plan of action,” said Trudy Kuehn, assistant professor of nursing.
The following day, EMT and nursing students worked a mock tornado incident that occurred while the students were in the midst of a ball game.
“This caused multiple injuries and the students had to apply their knowledge to work this mass casualty incident,” said Kuehn. “Although they have some fun, too, with makeup and props for these situations, the drills provide vital training for the students so that they are better prepared during a real life emergency.”
According to Kuehn, the success of training sessions such as these is attributed to team work.
“The faculty, which included Jerry Griffith, emergency medical services program coordinator, and Lucy Little and Courtney Darden of the nursing department played a very big role in the planning and execution of the mass casualty incident,” she said.

Shal Biacsi and Emily SelfShal Biacsi infects Emily Self by biting her head during the zombie apocalypse.
Tatrona Hines and Michael DeanTatrona Hines, who has contracted the zombie virus, infects Michael Dean. In back: Denita Peele and Masako Keen are also in danger of getting the virus.
Stretcher EMTsFrank Land III, assisted by Amanda Pulley, EMS intermediate program instructor, take “victim” Diana Adjei out on a stretcher during the exercises at PDCCC.
headwound webJennifer McCoy, right, calls out to EMTs to quickly tend to her injured friend, Masako Keene, during the mass casualty incident.
Disaster eyewound Noah FaganNoah Fagan nurses a severe eye injury until help arrives.
Asthma AttackIn the midst of all the chaos, Candice Keyes has an asthma attack.


Paul D. Camp Community College’s Division of Workforce Development launches Manufacturing Technician Certification

Classes will be available beginning in May for a new certification at Paul D. Camp Community College. The Division of Workforce Development will offer Manufacturing Technician Level 1 (MT1) certification, which will train participants on the critical competencies required for modern manufacturing production and production-related occupations.
Coordinator Bob Hayes said, “Instruction will focus on critical actions; Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) knowledge; systems; and processes necessary to participate in an advanced manufacturing enterprise. Activities will include a concentration on math and measurement; quality and continuous improvement practices; and advanced manufacturing processes and controls.”
The class will provide participants with the development of high performance skills through demonstrations, lectures, self-paced studies, labs, technical presentations, use of proxy technology, critical thinking, problem solving and individual/group activities.
Many manufacturing employers report difficulty in finding qualified workers to fill their industry-specific needs. There are three factors contributing to the lack of skilled workers. They are the increase in technology required for manufacturing, the retirement of existing workers, and the competition for talent.
“The Manufacturing Skills Institute, which set the national skills standards for MT1 certification in 2009, is partnering with PDCCC to provide this baseline credential program in the Hampton Roads and Western Tidewater area,” Hayes said. “It will provide training to address identified technical skill gaps and provide a pathway to advanced level training and specialized training based on industry requirements for potential new hires and incumbent employees.”
The MT1 program will address the core competency areas of math and measurement; spatial reasoning and manufacturing technology, and business acumen and quality, for skilled production occupations in all sectors of manufacturing.
Contact Hayes, 757-650-8699 or bhayes@pdc.edu, for customized company training.


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

VCCS 50 LogoApril 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 50.vccs.edu.


Paul D. Camp Community College’s gala features Smithfield musical group, honors former legislators for continued support of education

Paul D. Camp Community College will host a Platform for Change Gala at the college’s Regional Workforce Development Center on Saturday, April 23. Proceeds will benefit the Rural Virginia Horseshoe Initiative, a state level campaign that includes PDCCC.
“The initiative is aimed at helping more people in rural communities to transition into postsecondary education,” said Dr. Renee Felts, vice president of Institutional Advancement and executive director of the PDCCC Foundation. “More specifically, we will use funds to support more full-time career coaches in our high schools and incentives for GED recipients to continue their education. Those students will also have career coach support throughout the process.”
High school career coaches provide students guidance and resources in planning, setting goals, and selection of community or technical colleges. They also help students understand the financial aid, grant and scholarships processes.
“Giving the students resources to make informed decisions about their future also builds their confidence,” said Felts.
The word “horseshoe” refers to the shape of the area in Virginia if you drew an imaginary line from the Eastern Shore westward across the Southside to Southwest Virginia and up to the Shenandoah Valley, which creates an arch shape representing 75 percent of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s geography. More than half a million people living in the rural horseshoe have less than a high school education.
“This places Virginia in poor ranking nationally despite the success experienced in other parts of Virginia that do not fall within the ‘horseshoe,’” said Dr. Bill Aiken, interim president at PDCCC. “The cost associated with residents who aren’t prepared for the modern workplace affects all Virginians.”
According to former Virginia Governor Gerald Baliles, the level of education one has directly affects one’s earning potential. Increasing the number of people attaining postsecondary education affects “higher earnings, increased tax revenues, reduced entitlements and a more attractive business climate.”
The Platform for Change Gala will also serve as an opportunity to honor former Delegate Samuel Glasscock and former Senator Fred Quayle.
“They have whole heartedly been committed to education in the Commonwealth,” said PDCCC Foundation Board President Herb DeGroft. “They will be honored for their service to Virginia, our localities and to PDCCC as Local Board and Foundation Board members, respectively. We are fortunate to have such distinguished members on our boards.”
A VIP reception with open bar at the ticket price of $125 will begin at 5:30 p.m. An Open Reception with a cash bar at a ticket price of $75 starts at 6:30 p.m. Both receptions will feature music by the Smithfield High Evening Ensemble.
Dinner, catered by Smithfield Station, will follow at 7:00 p.m. and music will be provided by Strictly Bizzness until 10 p.m. Tickets to the event, sponsored by Smithfield Foods, Dominion and Bank of America, may be purchased at pdc.edu/GALA or by calling 757-569-6790.


Backflow Prevention and Cross-Connection Control offered on PDCCC’s Hobbs Suffolk Campus

A course designed for plumbing, mechanical and fire suppression contractors, city building and plumbing officials, public utilities inspectors, water and wastewater personnel, health department officials and engineers will be held Friday, April 1, and Saturday, April 2, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in room 105 at the Paul D. Camp Community College Hobbs Suffolk Campus, 271 Kenyon Road.
Backflow Prevention and Cross-Connection Control is focused on helping participants understand backflow and recognize cross-connections, with special emphasis on preparing individuals to test, inspect and provide in-line maintenance of reduced pressure principle backflow prevention devices, double check valve assemblies and pressure vacuum breakers.
The class costs $144.65 and is worth one credit. For more information, call 757-569-6050, email workforce@pdc.edu or visit www.pdc.edu/workforce-development/


Paul D. Camp Community College Hosts First Business Leaders Breakfast

Pruden CenterJoe Aiken of the J.M. Smucker Co., from left, Martie Ann King of Massimo Zanetti, Rose Albino of J.M. Smucker Co., Col. Brett Reister, of the Joint Staff J6 and Andre Skinner of The Pruden Center were among the attendees at the Business Leaders Breakfast.

~Partnerships to Strengthen Workforce Top the Discussions~

Suffolk business leaders and Paul D. Camp Community College joined forces on Thursday, March 10, to discuss opportunities to strengthen the city’s workforce. At the forefront of the discussion was the need for employees with the skillsets and experience needed for today’s growing industries, which increasingly require technology savvy. Just as importantly, “soft skills” are crucial to both large and small companies and are often a missing link in the younger market.
Dr. Bill Aiken, PDCCC interim president, shared the college’s three-year strategic plan for a better trained workforce, which includes relevant programs, partnerships and productivity. “Paul D. Camp Community College is committed to working with area businesses to provide quality employees with the specific skills needed in our market,” he said.
Randy Betz, vice president of workforce development, shared examples of successful partnerships the college has fostered with Keurig Green Mountain and Newport News Shipbuilding.
Dr. Tara Atkins-Brady, vice president of student and academic development, highlighted existing and new areas of study the college offers, in addition to the soft skills training that PDCCC students receive. “Our programs incorporate workforce readiness, and emphasize important skills, such as punctuality, professionalism and safety in the workplace,” she said.
With many of the area’s top employers facing an aging workforce, leaders are looking ahead to train and hire new employees. Electrical and Instrumentation specialists are particularly hard to find. Good candidates are in short supply.
Martie Ann King with Massimo Zanetti stated, “Qualified and experienced Instrument Techs are among the most skilled and highest paid within the hourly workforce.” The group also stressed the need for candidates who prefer the technical field degree verses a traditional four-year college degree for techs and mechanics. Careers as instrumentation techs and maintenance mechanics, who specialize in manufacturing technology, are in high demand. Often, companies must use third party recruiters to fill vacancies. Many of these positions require career studies certificates or associate degrees that can be earned in as little as one to two years. “As in the case with Keurig Green Mountain, we built the credentials based on what that particular employer needed,” emphasized Atkins-Brady.
Other sought after professions include information technology, telecommunications and network/cyber security. Col. Brett Reister, Chief of Staff with the Joint Staff J6, said, “A lot of resources are being invested to support communications network defense and cyber security.”
Additionally, from an IT (Information Technology) perspective, many Government Service (GS) civilians who support the military are nearing retirement age; so, the Department of Defense (all Services) is looking for professionals with technical qualifications, certifications and technical background, not necessarily four-year degrees, to fill its workforce requirements. Though DoD often looks to grow their workforce internally, the department is always looking for new avenues to meet their technical challenges and requirements, including the use of a contractor workforce that comes from both large and small companies. Oftentimes, these contractors successfully compete for open GS positions.
In the high touch front, it is no surprise that substantial job growth in the healthcare sector will continue. However, Judy Raymond, executive director at Lake Prince Woods Retirement Community, revealed that home care nursing, which requires a unique set of skills, is expected to see a higher rate of growth due to changes in healthcare delivery and reimbursement.
“Paul D. Camp Community College will continue to reach out to the business leaders throughout our market,” says Dr. Renee Felts, vice president of institutional advancement. “Discussions and partnerships like this enable us to come together to positively impact our community and grow our economy.”
For more information about the next PDCCC Business Leaders Breakfast, contact Felts at (757) 569-6760 or rfelts@pdc.edu.
Alan Harris Andre Skinner Mona ParkerDr. Alan Harris of PDCCC, from left, welcomes Andre Skinner and Mona Parker of The Pruden Center to the event.

Andre Skinner The Pruden CenterAndre Skinner, director of The Pruden Center, shares his insights during the inaugural event.


Paul D. Camp Community College Robotics Program lays foundation for transfer, career

Professor LorenzAssistant Professor of Electronics/Mechatronics/Robotics David Lorenz explains a procedure to the robotics students at PDCCC
A field that affords varied opportunities in the job market has Paul D. Camp Community College students feeling secure about the program of study they have chosen.
“This program gives you experience in electronics, machines, robots, programming and software engineering,” said Assistant Professor David Lorenz about the robotics program at PDCCC.
“From here, you can apply those skills to a job in any manufacturing company. It’s also a lot of fun.”
Robotics program student Joe Saunders recommends the course of study to current and prospective students, whether they are interested in continuing their education at a four-year school or going straight to work.
“Everything is new and exciting,” he said. “All of the programs are up-to-date, so you’re learning with the very best equipment available. Even students who aren’t looking to go into the field of engineering or robotics should check out some of the classes because they are just a blast.” He plans on becoming a machine operator for Sumitomo Corporation.
Students have the opportunity at PDCCC to learn and interact with Lorenz in a small class setting rather than listening to a lecture series. “In this class, almost everything is hands on,” he said.
Students train with a FANUC Robot, the same caliber as robots used in the industry setting.
“This allows students to get ahead in the workplace,” said Lorenz. “Being able to learn and use this robot before employment at an industry makes a student very marketable to an employer.”
Robotics student Larry Minggia sought out the program to learn everything he can about electronics and programming. “It was difficult to understand that everything I was trying to do was much easier than I initially thought,” he said. “I was trying to do all of these ‘big fixes’ when really the solution was simple.”
Minggia has developed a knack for the program and now knows where his future is heading. “I found my love for programming and building here in these classes,” he said. “I want to transfer to Old Dominion University to earn a degree in electronics and engineering.”
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are many job opportunities in the robotics field including electro-mechanical technicians and electrical/electronics engineering technicians, which earned a median pay of $53,070 and $59,820, respectively, in 2014.
Rhonda Hingerty Larry Almond Dylan BealeRhonda Hingerty, from left, Dylan Beale and Larry Almond execute hands-on learning using a FANUC Robot.


Paul D. Camp Community College Nursing Student Adopts Middle School

PDCCC_Taylor and Edwards webRoslyn Taylor, PDCCC registered nursing student, from left, and Mallory Edwards, Georgie D. Tyler Middle School nurse, share in the joy of announcing the Adopt-a-School campaign.
Shortly after completing a required community service project, Roslyn Taylor, president of the Paul D. Camp Community College Registered Nursing Program Class of 2016, seized the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of children by adopting Georgie D. Tyler Middle School in Windsor.
In the nursing program, students have actual hours of shift work called clinical rotations in which they shadow licensed registered nurses at local community events, schools, and healthcare facilities. “These experiences allow us to gain knowledge and acquire the nursing skills we need when we enter the workforce,” said Taylor.
This semester during her pediatric nursing course, Taylor shadowed Mallory Edwards, the school nurse at GTMS. “As she and I were getting acquainted, she said something that struck a chord in me,” said Taylor. “She told me that she starts each day doing the laundry. I was amazed when she told me her office was equipped with washers and dryers.”
Every day, Edwards provides clean clothes “for students who are either growing out of their clothes and parents cannot afford to buy new, or when accidents happen and parents cannot be reached,” said Taylor.
She added that school nurses also provide healthy snacks because students either missed breakfast or have medical conditions such as diabetics.
“I was really touched by school nurses who step so far outside of their professional titles to provide holistic care for these children,” Taylor said. She believes in Florence Nightingale’s theory of holistic nursing, which involves treating the entire person, not just the illness. “After experiencing first-hand the selflessness of school nurses, I can honestly say I no longer take their job as lightly as I once did,” she said. Edwards’s acts of kindness moved the class president to adopt the school so that PDCCC students and staff could donate items. “She was elated,” said Taylor.
Taylor proposed the idea that each semester the nursing students could adopt a school, find out the school’s individual needs, collect donations, and present them to the school nurse at the end of the semester. This was the foundation that began the Adopt-a-School Campaign. “I figured that in a combined effort with the faculty and students at the college, it would be a great legacy to continue in years to come,” said Taylor.
With the support of the PDCCC nursing faculty, Taylor’s idea became a reality. She is collecting donations of clothing and healthy snacks in a collection box located in the corridor of the nursing offices at the college. Taylor will present the donations to Georgie D. Tyler Middle School on April 29. “I know without a shadow of a doubt that we can promote wellness and pay it forward by being change agents for our community,” she said.
For more information on the RN program and other programs and certifications offered at PDCCC, visit the website at www.pdc.edu.


Paul D. Camp Community College Awards Spring 2016 Scholarships

Spring 2016 Scholarship group webCelebrating at the PDCCC Spring 2016 Scholarship Reception, from left, are students Kyrie McLeod, Imani Edwards, Tamara Branch, Cordero Williams, Danielle Stauffer and Jesse Pruden, along with Vera Sykes and Anne Hager, both of the Franklin Woman’s Club. Hager serves as president of the local organization.
Paul D. Camp Community College scholarship recipients, administrators, and donors gathered Feb. 16 at the Regional Workforce Development Center for the 2016 Spring Scholarship Reception.
Thanks to the generous contributions to PDCCC scholarships that totaled $8,250 this spring, the following academically qualified recipients were recognized:

  • Tamara Branch of Smithfield-Kiwanis Club of Smithfield Scholarship
  • Charity Thompson of Suffolk-Jim Lassiter PDCCC Scholarship
  • Imani Edwards of Zuni-Smithfield Foundation Scholarship
  • Taylor Felts of Franklin-Bertella C. Westbrook Memorial Scholarship for Nursing Students
  • Latasha Johnson of Suffolk- King’s Fork Woman’s Club of Suffolk Scholarship and Smithfield Foundation Scholarship
  • Josephine Lel of Virginia Beach- Ryan L. Kirkland Memorial Scholarship for Nursing Students
  • Kyrie McLeod of Courtland-Connie Patterson Memorial Nursing Scholarship and Karen Phillips Chase Memorial Nursing Scholarship
  • Angela McQuillia of Suffolk-GED & Adult Education Scholarship
  • Alexzandera Nichols of Suffolk-Perry R. Adams Scholarship
  • Jesse Pruden of Suffolk- Col. Lula B. Holland, U.S. Army (Ret.), MSW, BSN, AA Scholarship
  • Andrea Reese of Franklin-Cynthia S. Frierdich, RN Nursing Scholarship
  • Danielle Stauffer of Franklin-Woman’s Club of Smithfield Scholarship
  • Jessica Teter of Smithfield-Smithfield Foundation Scholarship
  • Cynthia Thibeault of Smithfield-Alvin C. Rogers Memorial Smithfield Ruritan Scholarship
  • Cordero Williams of Suffolk-Franklin Woman’s Club Scholarship
  • Rebekah Wilson of Smithfield-Gordon “Gene” Barlow, Jr. Scholarship and Kiwanis Club of Smithfield Scholarship
    “Many of our students cannot afford their education even with financial aid,” said Dr. Renee Felts, vice president for institutional advancement and executive director of the PDCCC Foundation. “We are very fortunate that so many generous donors recognize the importance of higher education and are willing to help students realize their educational goals at Paul D. Camp Community College.”
    PDCCC awards scholarships each fall and spring semester. For more information about scholarships and other financial aid opportunities, call the Office of Institutional Advancement at 757-569-6790 or visit www.pdc.edu.


    Virginia’s Community Colleges Celebrate Fifty Years of Progress; Promise for the Future

    VCCS Logo webVirginia’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.
    And one part of that year-long observance is to ask community members to share their stories regarding what community colleges have meant for them. A web landing page has been created to collect those stories at 50.vccs.edu, and they will be shared later in the year at events commemorating the system. Community members are welcome to share stories from a student, family, business, or government perspective, past or future, about how community colleges have strengthened the community – and student lives.
    “We know that there are numerous people who have been affected by their decision to attend Paul D. Camp Community College and who have successes to share,” said Dr. Renee Felts, vice president for institutional advancement at Paul D. Camp Community College and executive director of the PDCCC Foundation. “We encourage you to visit the VCCS site to let others know how you rose above hardships or secured a job. The successes of others inspire those who think they cannot afford college or fit workforce training in their busy schedules.”
    Virginia’s Community Colleges were created by the General Assembly in 1966 to provide comprehensive institutions that addressed unmet needs in higher education and workforce training. By 1972 there were 23 community colleges located across the state in a master plan that put access to quality higher education within a short drive of every Virginian.
    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 Franklin campus of Paul D. Camp Community College has been serving the community since its opening in 1971 and was followed by the establishment of the Smithfield site in 1993. Although there was an earlier version of the Hobbs Suffolk Campus on Pinner Street, the current building on Kenyon Road opened in 1995, followed by the Regional Workforce Development Center in 2002.
    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.


    New GED and Adult Education Scholarship Keeps Dreams Alive

    Angela McQuillaDreams really do come true. Angela McQuillia’s dream will come true this May when she graduates from Paul D. Camp Community College with an associate degree in business administration. McQuillia is the first recipient of PDCCC’s GED and Adult Education Scholarship, which provides those who recently earned GED credentials (Certificate of High School Equivalency) with scholarship dollars to earn a PDCCC career studies certificates, associate degrees, and/or certificates in areas ranging from welding to business and technology.
    Reaching this goal would not have been possible without her persistence, support from her family, and the help of PDCCC guidance counselor Dr. Alan Harris and Dean of Student Services Mrs. Trina Jones.
    “I cried when they told me I was awarded the scholarship and all I needed to do was take one class,” she said, “I am a hard worker and overcame a lot of barriers along the way. I worked at my church all my life in leadership roles and raised a family while working different jobs.”
    McQuillia attended Lakeland High School, but she and her best friend skipped school almost every day to “just hang out and do nothing,” she said. “I just didn’t want to go to school.”
    Someone from the school came to her house to check on her one day, and this was the last straw. “My mother and aunt told me they were fed up. I had to either go back to high school and graduate or get a job if I wanted their help.” McQuillia was in twelfth grade, when she gave birth to a son. She was only 18 years old and already had twins; so, she dropped out of school.
    This is when her educational journey began. Over the next 20 years, McQuillia earned a certificate in cosmetology from Suffolk Beauty Academy, became a Personal Care Aid (PCA), worked for a “temp” service, earned her GED at Pruden Vo-Tech Center, and took classes at Paul D. Camp Community College, as well as another local community college.
    The GED scholarship was the final shot in the arm she needed to earn her associate degree. “Dr. Harris and Dean Jones told me to not give up. They were going to search for a way to help me,” said McQuillia.
    “I would have never made it if it hadn’t been for them and the challenging teachers at PDCCC.” She credits Ronette Jacobs, who gave her a good foundation in writing, and Martha Harrison and Dr. Justin Oliver, who ensured she fully understood the basics of math before she moved on. “They cared about me and told me not to quit.”
    After taking several courses at another community college, she returned to PDCCC to get the one-on-one help she experienced before at the Hobbs-Suffolk campus. She knew immediately she was in the right place at the right time.
    McQuillia, currently employed as a receiver at a local Walmart distribution center, is an elder at her church. Her twins are now 20 years old and she has a 17 year old and 14 year old at home. Earning her degree will open doors for her, so she is glad she has been focused and determined to succeed.
    Her ultimate dream is to earn a bachelor’s degree in finance and own her own business. She believes, “The key to success is to stay faith based. God wants us to keep the family strong, because faithfulness takes away peer pressure and low self-esteem.”
    The GED & Adult Education Scholarship is part of PDCCC’s Rural Virginia Horseshoe Initiative, which has two parts: 1) GED & Adult Education Scholarships and 2) Career Coaches at high schools in PDCCC’s geographic region. Both programs are made possible by the generosity of community and business donors.
    For more information about the scholarship visit www.pdc.edu/scholarships. For more information on financially supporting RVHI, contact Renee Felts at 757-569-6760.
    To learn how Paul D. Camp Community College can help you achieve your dreams, call 757-569-6700.
    For more information, please contact
    Nancy Warren
    Assistant Professor of Communication Studies


    Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (GMCR) program

    Green Mountain Coffee RoastersThe students are as follows, starting from the bottom left and going around the table in a clockwise direction: Eddie Martin, Michael Cale, John Britt, John McBee, Robert Barrett, Chad Jones, Pender Hathaway, Darwin Regalado
    This program is designed for employees of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (GMCR). Students were given specialized electrical technology training with the intention of increasing efficiency at the worksite. Specifically the students took the following five classes: ETR 193 Studies in Electrical Engineering Technology, ELE 150 AC and DC Circuit Fundamentals, ELE 193 Studies in Electrical Safety Codes, ELE 216 Industrial Electricity and ETR 293 Studies in Programmable Controllers. The first two classes were taught at PDCCC and the last three classes were taught at GMCR in Windsor. Classes were taught twice a week starting in December of 2014 and finishing in November of 2015. GMCR has implemented this program at two other plants and they are making attendance/completion of this program mandatory for all of their maintenance technicians if they want to be promoted from a maintenance tech I to a maintenance tech II.
    This program also represents how PDCCC formed an industry partnership with GMCR. PDCCC had to collaborate with Pellissippi State Community College, founder of this program, and GMCR to bring together management and labor around the common purpose of improving the competitiveness and efficiency of GMCR products and services.


    PDCCC and The Workforce Development Center and Rotary Club of Franklin Bowl-a-Thon

    Thanks go to all PDCCC Bowlers for another successful team effort at Saturday afternoon’s Bowl-a-Thon! Proceeds of this wonderful event support scholarships and local charities. The final dollar amount is still being tallied, but will be over $20,000.
    Thanks go out to Ellis Cofield who recruited our top flight PDCCC team composed of dual enrollment, traditional and alum bowlers! Team members included: Jennifer Sulin, Matthew Seaborne, Dylan Beale, James Watlet, and Warren Hastings.
    Special recognition goes to James Watlet who had the individual game high for the whole tournament with a 236! PDCCC alum Jennifer Sulin had the high women’s game set with a 210 and 188!
    Most importantly everyone had a lot of fun in a great party environment created by a wonderful DJ!


    Math instructor Heather Eckman, has radically impacted the students from Paul D. Camp Community College in just the 2 short years she’s been on campus.

    Heather EckmanMath instructor and now department chair, Heather Eckman, has radically impacted the students from Paul D. Camp Community College in just the 2 short years she’s been on campus.
    Coming from a background of several degrees and accomplishments including those outside of her field, Eckman decided she needed a change. Moving from New York down to Virginia, Eckman started teaching 11 math courses at the Franklin Public High School. Outside of the math class, she was known as “Coach” due to the fact that she coached the high school soccer team.
    After 3 years, Eckman came here to Paul D. Camp Community College, excited to teach and further the coming generations.
    “I just enjoy teaching here!” says Eckman when asked what she loves about this school.
    “It’s so enjoyable, because I get to take the passion and love I have for math and I get to share it with the whole classroom.” Eckman takes exemplary pride in her classes, proving to students that they cannot only learn, but have fun in the classroom.
    Eckman says her favorite part of teaching at PDCCC is getting to know her students. “Just seeing them out and around either as a work-study, passing in the hallway, or even when I see them at their jobs. I love being able to interact with them as people and not just as students.”
    Most students just want to be understood. Eckman works hard to call on students by name and in building those connections that last.


    First Intermediate EMT Class Underway

    First EMT Class WebPictured above (back row left to right) Jerry Griffith (EMS Programs Coordinator), Devin Lockhart, Adam Byers, Wade Councill, (Middle Row) Frank Land, Ryan Moore, Daniel Crocker, (Front Row) Jessica Milby, Amanda Pulley (Instructor)
    PDCCC’s first Intermediate EMT class began Tuesday, October 20th with Mr. Gerald Griffith as the lead instructor. We are excited to be offering this program here at PDCCC. This program prepares students to become Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT) in the Commonwealth of Virginia. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for EMTs and paramedics is expected to grow 23 percent from 2012 to 2022. Most EMTs work full time and likely do shift work that includes weekends and holidays. They may work for private ambulance services, fire departments, hospitals or other rescue services. The average salary for an EMT is a little more than $31,000. Good Luck and welcome aboard!


    PDCCC Welcomes New Members of Honor Society

    PTK Induction webInductees, standing from left, are: Danielle Stauffer, Isabelle Black, Ashley Quesinberry, Vakiah Artis, and Imani Edwards. Back row: Sherita Grant, Mary Burgess, Bonnie Newsome, Olivia Adams, Amanda Elliott, and Alexis Davis. Not pictured are Sandy Boone, Shaquii Gary, Angela Harp, Rebekah Hill, Abigail Idisi, Gabrielle Jones, Eryn Owen, Tamike Sawyer, Brett Simpson, Shakerrah Sutton, and Courtney Wright.
    Twenty-two Paul D. Camp Community College students were inducted into the Omega Zeta Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa Inc., the International Honor Society of the Two-Year College, during a ceremony Wednesday evening at the Regional Workforce Development Center in Franklin.
    The honor society’s mission is not only to recognize two-year college students for their academic achievements, but also to provide them with development opportunities through programs for leadership, fellowship and service. –PHOTOS BY Stacy Pauley


    Deck the Halls during Holiday Reception

    Holiday Reception webRing in the holiday at PDCCC! We have been busy with preparations for our annual Holiday Reception, scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 3, 2015, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Regional Workforce Development Center.
    Bring a non-perishable item to be donated to Franklin Cooperative Ministry.
    RSVP here!


    Paul D. Camp Community College Offers Contractor Business Licensing Course at Workforce Center

    “Basic Contractor Business Licensing” will be held from 5 to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 29, and Wednesday, Sept. 30, at Paul D. Camp Community College’s Regional Workforce Development Center, 100 North College Drive, Franklin.
    This is an eight-hour, non-credit course that provides an overview of the statutes and regulations that govern contractor licensing in Virginia. The course, led by Donald Goodwin, city of Franklin director of Community Development, is approved by the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation and Board of Contractors.
    Topics will include: Starting a Business in Virginia; Laws and Regulations; Contractor Limits and Classifications; Virginia State Statutes Relating to Contractors; Statement of Consumer Protections; The Licensing Process; Obtaining a Contract; Customer Service and New Home Warranties; Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code (USBC); Underground Utilities; Insurance; Virginia Taxes; Labor Law; Erosion and Sediment Control; Virginia Occupational Safety and Health (VOSH); and Liens.
    The cost, which includes the textbook, is $175. The deadline for registration is Sept. 26, 2015. For more information, contact the Workforce Development office, 757-569-6050, or email workforce@pdc.edu.


    Paul D. Camp Community College honors scholars, donors during Fall 2015 reception

    Approximately 70 scholarship recipients and namesakes, donors and family members recently attended the Paul D. Camp Community College Fall 2015 Scholarship Reception held at the College’s Regional Workforce Development Center in Franklin.
    The college has awarded 23 students with scholarships that will aid in paying for tuition and books during the fall 2015 semester. The following applicants were honored with awards:

    • Dylan Beale of Courtland-Bobby B. Worrell Scholarship
    • Jeamis Britt of Windsor-Smithfield Foundation Scholarship
    • Bonnie Burns of Franklin-Bertella C. Westbrook Memorial Scholarship for Nursing Students
    • Ellis Cofield, III of Franklin-Margaret L. Brown Education Scholarship
    • Deven Dodd of Courtland-Commonwealth Legacy Scholarship
    • Imani Edwards of Zuni-Nellie White Business Scholarship; William and Dorothy Gwaltney Scholarship; and the Smithfield Foundation Scholarship
    • Taylor Felts of Franklin-“Service Above Self” Rotary Scholarship and Cynthia S. Frierdich, RN Nursing Scholarship
    • Raegan Hasty of Carrsville-Camp to Camp Scholarship
    • Shadeejah Hunt of Franklin-Camp to Camp Scholarship
    • Jasmine Lane of Ivor-Donald C. Boyce Education Scholarship
    • LaRhonda Mabry of Courtland-40/7 Society Scholarship
    • Kyrie McLeod of Courtland-Roy and Eleanor Epps Cornwell Scholarship and Suffolk Ruritan Nursing Scholarship
    • Eryn Owen of Suffolk-City of Suffolk Early Childhood Development Scholarship and Cross Realty Career Grant
    • Joy Pallone of Capron-Shirley N. Barnes Scholarship
    • Cadrina Ralph of Suffolk-Endowed Workforce Development Scholarship
    • Jacqueline Rawlings of Suffolk-Dr. Alvin C. Rogers Endowed Scholarship
    • Patricia Reyna of Suffolk-American Association of University Women, Suffolk Branch
    • Jerrod Russell of Franklin-Perry W. Barnett Memorial Endowed Scholarship
    • Matthew Seaborne of Sedley-Smithfield Foundation Scholarship
    • Jessica Teter of Smithfield-Smithfield Foundation Scholarship
    • Kela’ Turner of Zuni-Smithfield Foundation Scholarship
    • Emery Weist of Franklin-Smithfield Foundation Scholarship
    • Ebony White of Chesapeake-Dean Nancy Sandberg Scholarship

    Kyrie McLeod w Epps familyKyrie McLeod of Courtland, left, was awarded The Roy and Eleanor Epps Cornwell Scholarship. She is pictured with J.C. Epps Jr., Nancy Epps Bunn and Carolyn Epps, family members representing the scholarship at the reception.
    Imani Edwards & familyImani Edwards of Zuni, center with certificate, received the Nellie White Business Scholarship, the William and Dorothy Gwaltney Scholarship and the Smithfield Foundation Scholarship. She is pictured with her sister, Chloe Edwards, 13; brother, Marshall Lipscomb, 15; and mother Stephanie Edwards.
    “This fall, we’ve awarded 28 scholarships to 23 students, totaling more than $50,000,” said Dr. Renee Felts, interim vice president for institutional advancement and interim executive director of the PDCCC Foundation. “Through a new online tool launched last fall, we have also been able to increase our applications for scholarships to over 40 percent.”
    In addition to the above fall awards, the following students enrolled in Dual Enrollment classes received Dual Enrollment Camp Opportunity Scholarships (DECOS). Those students are as follows:

    • Deja Batten of Suffolk
    • Catherine Brown of Franklin
    • Dante Copeland of Suffolk
    • Tamia Copeland of Suffolk
    • Taliyah Edwards of Suffolk
    • Emily Foster of Suffolk
    • Imani Garde of Suffolk
    • Cierra Gilmore of Suffolk
    • D’Avion Godwin of Suffolk
    • Amari Long of Franklin
    • Jevedia Martin of Suffolk
    • DeVon Morris of Suffolk
    • Wilbert Ridley of Branchville
    • Dominique Rodriguez of Suffolk
    • Dorean Seaborn of Suffolk
    • Destynie Sebrell of Franklin
    • Aaliyah Simms of Suffolk
    • Markel Smith of Suffolk
    • Paula Steward of Suffolk
    • Ja’Qwon Weaver of Suffolk

    Dominique RodriguezDominique Rodriguez of Suffolk accepts a certificate for a Dual Enrollment Camp Opportunity Scholarship from PDCCC Interim President Dr. Bill Aiken.
    PDCCC awards scholarships each fall and spring semester. For more information, contact the Office of Institutional Advancement at 757-569-6790.


    Paul D. Camp Community College’s spring 2016 scholarship cycle opens September 8 for new and continuing students

    ~Deadline for submissions is Oct. 6, 2015~
    Applications for Paul D. Camp Community College scholarships will open Tuesday, Sept. 8, for the spring 2016 semester. New and continuing students can apply for an array of funding opportunities beginning that day.
    “The cost should not stop anyone from reaching their educational goals. That’s why Paul D. Camp Community College has established a number of opportunities for prospective and current students to help pay for their education through scholarships,” said Dr. Renee Felts, Interim Executive Director of the PDCCC Foundation and Interim Vice President for Institutional Advancement. “These opportunities are possible because of donors who have made student success a high priority.”
    PDCCC awarded nearly 80 scholarships totaling close to $56,000 to students during the 2014-15 academic year.
    Students may apply for scholarships in the spring regardless if they have applied for scholarships in the fall, as long as they meet the criteria listed for each award. The scholarship acceptance period, begins Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2015. Scholarship applications must be submitted by Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2015 at 11:59 p.m. and will only be accepted electronically.
    Students only need to follow these steps to apply:

    • Submit a PDCCC Scholarship Application with all required supporting documentation to scholarships@pdc.edu. (Scanning instructions are located in the area of the PDCCC computer labs and on the Web site scholarships page.)
    • New students must submit an application for admission to the College with your high school or college transcripts attached.
    • All students must submit two letters of reference with your application.
    • Read the criteria for each scholarship. Some require additional attachments, such as an essay. Applications missing required documents will not be processed.
    • Make sure that all requirements are met by the scholarship cycle deadline.
    • File a Free Application for Federal Student Aid at www.fafsa.gov using our school code: 009159.

    For more information, call the Office for Institutional Advancement at 757-569-6790 or log onto http://www.pdc.edu/financial-aid/scholarships/


    Free Health and Wellness Expo set for September 12 at Paul D. Camp Community College’s Workforce Center

    Diabetes has touched the lives of so many people we know. According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), one out of every three children born in this country after 2000 will be directly affected by the disease.
    An upcoming free event is focused on educating people and raising awareness about diabetes. The annual Victory over Diabetes Health and Wellness Expo is slated to do just that on Saturday, Sept. 12, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Paul D. Camp Community College Regional Workforce Development Center, 100 North College Drive, Franklin.
    “Diabetes kills more people in this country each year than breast cancer and AIDS combined,” said Avanti Allen-Benson of the ADA. “Although thousands of people have been diagnosed with the disease, there are many other people who may have it and not even know.”
    The event will feature activities for the entire family, including health screenings, healthy food sampling, Zumba, wellness information and presentations. In addition, the children can enjoy the bounce house or touch-a-truck activity, which provides a hands-on opportunity for them to be up close and personal with rescue vehicles they may have previously only read about. A complimentary lunch will be provided by Subway and door prizes will be awarded.
    “We are excited to partner with the American Diabetes Association and the Western Tidewater Health District to offer such an important event for the public,” said PDCCC Interim Vice President for Institutional Advancement Dr. Renee Felts. “We hope people will make it a family day, come out and enjoy themselves while learning valuable information related to the disease.”
    No registration is required. For more information, contact Allen-Benson, 757-424-6662, ext. 3277 or aallenbenson@diabetes.org.


    Paul D. Camp Community College Success Coach Sandra Walker leads by example

    Sandra Walker~Walker recently earned Doctor of Education degree~
    Sandra Artis Walker will tell you she came from “humble beginnings.”
    “I will never forget what my mother, Mary Artis, always told me and my siblings: ‘It doesn’t matter where you start; it’s where you finish,’” Walker said. “She has been a major influence in my life.”
    Her mother’s poignant words helped spur her desire to learn.
    After six years in the doctoral program at Walden University in Minneapolis, Minn.,
    Walker recently successfully defended her dissertation, “The Role of Local History in the Curriculum at a Rural Southeastern Community College,” and earned a Doctor of Education in Higher Education and Adult Learning. She completed the program with a 4.0 GPA.
    “This is quite an accomplishment for anyone, but especially for someone like Sandra, who did this while working a full-time job,” said Dr. Alan Harris, counselor on the Hobbs Suffolk Campus and supporter of Walker. “We are extremely proud of her.” Harris was a staunch supporter of the first generation student throughout this leg of her educational journey, encouraging her and helping her “see around the corner,” according to Walker.
    Born in Southampton County to a farming family, Walker’s father was African-American and her mother was Native American. Walker moved to Newport News, along with her two siblings and mother, at a very young age. “My mother always encouraged us to express pride in the heritage of her parents, who were both Native American.”
    “My mother always pushed education,” the PDCCC College Success Coach said. “She didn’t have a high school diploma, but she would always find ways to be involved in our education. She walked to our schools for our PTA meetings and served as PTA president at one of our schools. I was so proud when she earned her GED.”
    An 11-year veteran of the Army, Walker concluded her military service working in the National Security Agency (NSA) and later, the Pentagon, assigned to the Office of the Undersecretary of Defense (Defense Information Systems Agency-DISA). She returned to Southampton County, living in Sedley to be closer to her family.
    “It was the first time I had to ask for help,” she said. “I was recently divorced, I had no job and I had an asthmatic child,” she said. “I had GI Bill benefits, but it didn’t cover food or healthcare for my daughter, who was in elementary school at the time.”
    Walker applied for benefits at Southampton County Social Services and was further encouraged by the social worker, Marnita Hucks, to get as much education as possible. Walker enrolled at PDCCC, but really wanted to complete a degree from Western Illinois University (WIU). Long before any articulation agreements were in place, PDCCC’s Veterans benefits specialist Barbara Edwards collaborated with WIU’s Veterans representative to ensure Walker took the appropriate classes that would transfer. She graduated with a bachelor’s from the general studies program at WIU with a minor in Family and Consumer Sciences in 2007 while working up to two part-time jobs.
    “I met Dr. Patsy Joyner while I was enrolled at PDCCC,” said Walker about the now retired vice president for Institutional Advancement. “She is the reason why I continued on to finish the master’s and doctoral programs. She refused to let me be mediocre.”
    Walker completed, with distinguished honors, a Master of Science in Postsecondary Education (Foundations) in one year by following an accelerated schedule from Troy University in Montgomery, Ala.
    Prior to her current position of college success coach, Walker has served at PDCCC as library technician, tutor and On Ramp program career coach. She partners with the college’s Upward Bound and Student Support Services programs to provide information about college survival skills and scholarship resources, and established the Spanish Basics Learning Community at the college. She has worked in numerous other positions, including as Education Director, Tutor Coordinator and Program Leader of the Boys and Girls Club of Southeast Virginia in Franklin. She has received a multitude of awards and conducted numerous presentations.
    Her daughter, Olivia, just graduated from the PDCCC nursing program in May and is already working in her field of study.


    Paul D. Camp Community College expands opportunities in heating, ventilation and air conditioning

    For the first time, Paul D. Camp Community College is offering heating, ventilation and air conditioning classes to high school dual enrollment students beginning this fall semester.
    “We expect at least seven students from Franklin High School to be enrolled in the program,” said Dual Enrollment Coordinator Jeanette Pellegrin. “We’re extremely excited about this new partnership that will allow high school students to learn a trade in a field that has so many job opportunities. Students who successfully complete the program will graduate with a set of skills that should make them very hirable right away.”
    HVAC is a one-year, 24-credit program where successful completers earn a Career Studies Certificate in heating, ventilation and air conditioning.
    “The student is then prepared to take the EPA Refrigerant Handlers Certification test, which is a nation-wide credential that is essential for HVAC technicians,” said Industrial Trades Lead Faculty Richard Baker.
    According to Baker, this will also be the first time that HVAC classes will be offered during the day, which will provide more options to students. “The classes are open for the public to take as well,” he said. “And since it is a 24-credit course, general students may apply for financial aid to assist them with the cost.” Pellegrin noted that the dual enrollment students will not need to apply for aid because Franklin High School has partnered with the college to offer dual enrollment classes at no tuition charge to the student.
    HVAC classes are offered on the Franklin and Hobbs Suffolk campuses beginning Sept. 8. Seating is limited. For more information, contact Baker, rbaker@pdc.edu or 757-569-6729.


    Two sessions of beginning digital photography class to be held at Paul D. Camp Community College in Suffolk and Smithfield

    The Paul D. Camp Community College Division of Workforce Development will offer a digital photography class for beginners, titled “Get More from Your Camera,” at the Hobbs Suffolk Campus, 271 Kenyon Road, and PDCCC a Smithfield, 253 James Street. Both classes will be taught by award-winning photographer Shirley Whitenack.
    The class in Suffolk will be taught on Wednesdays, from September 16 to 30, from 9:00 a.m. to noon. The cost is $105. The session to be taught in Smithfield will be on Thursdays, from Sept. 17 to Oct. 15, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. The cost is $115
    “Participants will learn about the amazing things your camera is capable of that you never knew were possible,” said Whitenack.
    The instruction will cover basic camera mechanics, selection of film type, shooting modes, automatic focus, manual focus and flash. Exposure, shutter speeds, f-stops, ISO, white balance, metering modes, and impact of light direction will also be discussed.
    “There will be opportunities for outdoor shooting and take-home assignments to reinforce classroom instruction,” said Whitenack.
    The registration deadline is September 14. For more information, contact the Workforce Development Office, 757-569-6050, or log on at www.pdc.edu/workforce-development/.


    Paul D. Camp Community College Practical Nursing students earn pins

    PN Pinning Group webA special ceremony was held recently to recognize the students who have completed the Practical Nursing program at Paul D. Camp Community College. Celebrating this momentous occasion at the college’s Regional Workforce Development Center from left, are: nursing faculty members Lucy Little and Kimberly Lowe, students Haley Dixon of Franklin, Meghan Bridgers of Woodland, NC, Alexa Lilley of Suffolk, Samantha Dowd of Boykins, Jessica Ortiz of Franklin, Anndrea Wilson of Carrsville, and nursing faculty Stephanie Lockhart (faculty lead of the program) and Courtney Darden. Dr. Tara Atkins-Brady, vice president of Academic and student development, and Debbie Hartman, dean of Nursing and Allied Health, were among those who spoke during the program.


    Paul D. Camp Community College celebrates allied health students

    The Department of Nursing and Allied Health at Paul D. Camp Community College held a ceremony July 29 at the Regional Workforce Development Center to recognize the students who have completed the Nurse Aide and Medication Aide programs.
    Nurse Aide GroupCelebrating their accomplishments, above from left, are the 2015 Nurse Aide group Jasmine Anderson of Franklin, Bonnie Burns of Franklin, Heather Boyce of Suffolk, Instructor Cheryl Drake, Joy Pallone of Franklin and Kiana O’Neil of Franklin.
    Below from left: the 2015 Medication Aide group Sharnae McClenny of Franklin, Susan LaRose of Suffolk, Instructor Dawn Womble, Diamond Mason of Franklin, and Patrice Freeman of Franklin.Medication Aide web Dr. Tara Atkins-Brady, vice president of academic and student development, served as guest speaker at the event.
    For more information regarding allied health programs at the college, contact Christel Archer, 757-925-6315. Applications may be found at www.pdc.edu. Fall 2015 classes begin Aug. 21.


    Paul D. Camp Community College’s Upward Bound summer session closes with special ceremony led by the students

    The Upward Bound Program at Paul D. Camp Community College celebrated the closing of its summer session with approximately 250 attending a ceremony held July 21 at the Regional Workforce Development Center.
    The event was highlighted by a display of student projects and presentations by the high school freshmen, sophomores, juniors and seniors. The presentations featured the students’ talents, but were also focused on relating what the students have learned during the summer.
    “The Upward Bound students have been busy this summer,” Director Travis Parker said. “We have had workshops led by PDCCC faculty, staff and guest speakers, and organization presentations from Kids College, Youth Career Center of Hampton Roads, Bronco Federal Credit Union and Junior Achievement of Hampton Roads.”
    In addition, the students completed two Dual Enrollment classes, public speaking with Dr. Andrea Hall-Leonard, and college skills with Laura Clark. Students also engaged in geometry, Algebra II, biology, current events, Spanish I and II, essay writing and literature.
    “It’s not all work, however,” Parker said. “Upward Bound provides cultural experiences for the students as well. They participate in field trips on and off campus, and hands-on activities.”
    Also the students were recognized at the ceremony for raising more than half of the PDCCC goal of funds for the March of Dimes. It was confirmed that they achieved a donation of just over $550 for the worthy cause.
    The Upward Bound Program is a federal TRIO Program aimed at assisting 9th-12th graders, who will be first generation college graduates, with continuing their education at a postsecondary institution. The program serves 50 students from Franklin, Lakeland and Southampton high schools.
    dance presentationDance presentation:
    Rising juniors perform a dance presentation during the summer closing ceremony.

    Eischeid at projectsEischeid at projects:
    Volunteer Tom Eischeid, who taught some of the classes during the summer session, shows Brenda Bergess some of the projects the students completed.

    guitar webGuitar:
    Rising Lakeland High School junior Brandon Coker performs on guitar for the audience.

    project displayProject display:
    Rising Southampton High School sophomore Shemia Jarrett shows off her colorful painting.

    skit 1 webSkit 1:
    Southampton High School rising sophomores Haleigh Andrew, Angel Padilla and Paul Cobb perform a skit for attendees at the event.

    tutus webTutus:
    Rising sophomore from Southampton High School Anastasia Freeman, left, and rising sophomore of Lakeland High School Tatiyahna Blakely perform a dance number.

    rust colored suitRust colored suit:
    Rising Lakeland High School junior JaQwon Weaver reverts during his delivery to the audience.


    Paul D. Camp Community College welcomes new Isle of Wight County Schools Superintendent

    Visit to Admissions
    Dr. James Thornton, new superintendent of Isle of Wight County Schools, is introduced to Trina Jones, PDCCC Dean of Student Services, during a recent visit to the Franklin Campus. Dr. Tara Atkins-Brady, vice president of academic and student development, center, provided an overview of the programs offered by the college and led Thornton on a brief tour of the main building, which included the Library Learning Commons, below. Also attending the informational session and lunch were Dr. Bill Aiken, college president; Jeanette Pellegrin, dual enrollment coordinator; Dr. Justin Oliver, interim dean of transfer programs and the Hobbs Suffolk Campus; Caroline Hurt, local board member; Lynn Jones, local board chair; and Laura Abel, assistant superintendent of Isle of Wight County
    Visit to LLC


    Paul D. Camp Community College Foundation Tees Up for 12th Annual Golf Tournament

    Jackson Hurt Bird and PoehlsDuring last year’s event, Jonathan Jackson, from left, Darden Hurt, Jeff Bird and Jeff Poehls earned the first place winner in the first flight spot.
    Paul D. Camp Community College will hold its 12th Annual Golf Tournament on Thursday, Sept. 17 at Sleepy Hole Golf Club, 4700 Sleepy Hole Road in Suffolk.
    “Proceeds from this event will benefit student scholarships and educational programs at the College,” said Dr. Renee Felts, interim vice president for Institutional Advancement and interim executive director of the PDCCC Foundation. “It is a great way to enjoy the sport of golfing, while helping students continue their education.”
    Registration for the tournament, sponsored by the PDCCC Foundation and Smithfield Foods, will run from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., when a shotgun start will get underway. An awards ceremony and dinner will take place at approximately 5:30 p.m.
    Prizes will be awarded for the top three flights. In addition, there will be raffle prizes, a 50/50 putting contest, and superlative prizes for Closest to Pin, Longest Drive and Hole-in-One.
    In the event of inclement weather, a rain date has been set for Thursday, Sept. 24.
    For sponsorship levels and registration forms, visit www.pdc.edu/golf. For more information, contact the Office of Institutional Advancement at 757-569-6790.

    Taylor Williams webTaylor Williams lines up his shot during last year’s event at Sleepy Hole Golf Club.


    Deven Dodd selected as recipient of Commonwealth Legacy Scholarship at Paul D. Camp Community College

    Deven Dodd libraryDeven N. Dodd was still in high school when she began preparing for her academic future. She will begin the fall semester at Paul D. Camp Community College in August with pre-calculus I and II, biology I and II, and history successfully completed through the dual enrollment program. The program allows those who are eligible to earn college credits while they are still in high school.
    “I wanted to get ahead on my General Studies degree,” she said. “I knew I would need to complete that before I went into any field.”
    Dodd was selected as the recipient of the 2015 Paul D. Camp Community College Commonwealth Legacy Scholarship. A Commonwealth Legacy Scholarship winner is selected from each of the 23 institutions in Virginia’s Community College System and is awarded by the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education (VFCCE).
    The scholarship may be used on any campus within the VCCS. This year, it will provide a $3,125 scholarship for a full year of tuition, books and fees.
    Graduating with a 4.132 from Southampton High School, the 18-year-old Courtland resident hopes to complete the associate’s degree along with the nursing prerequisites within two years before applying to the nursing program. Her goal is to become a registered nurse.
    Her decision to become a nurse came after suffering from a heart condition beginning at age 12. Due to an abnormal amount of sinoatrial (SA) nodes, which are described online as the heart’s “natural pacemaker,” her heart rate would reach dangerously high levels. Despite going to many doctors, the problem wasn’t diagnosed until a few years later.
    “After calling my mother to pick me up from school when I was having an attack, she took me to Courtland Medical Center when Dr. Bowling was working,” Dodd recalled. “They ran an EKG and realized that there was an issue.”
    At 15, she was faced with taking medication the rest of her life or enduring surgery. If she did nothing, doctors advised she would be on the heart transplant list before she turned 30. “The medication didn’t work,” she said, “so I had to have surgery. Thankfully, Dr. Reed at CHKD cured me and I no longer have problems.”
    Although caregivers encouraged her to pursue nursing, there were a couple of additional factors that influenced her decision as well. “I like to help people,” she said. “And my aunt is an EMT.”
    At Southampton High, Dodd was a member of the National Honor Society for two years. She also served two years in the Key Club and three years on the Keys for a Cure Relay for Life team. She is a first-generation student and a member of Courtland Baptist Church. In addition, she has a part-time job in Courtland. Dodd has been awarded Dual Enrollment Camp Opportunity Scholarships at PDCCC.
    “Her father (Mike) and I are extremely proud of her,” said Deven’s mother, Trina. “She has worked hard to get where she is and I know she’ll continue to do so.” She also has a sister, Jamie, who has graduated from PDCCC with multiple degrees and certificates—the first in 2012. Jamie now works on the Franklin Campus as the College Success Coach Initiative Program Specialist.
    Dodd plans to pursue her bachelor’s degree in nursing through Sentara or at a four-year college or university, such as Old Dominion University or Virginia Commonwealth University. She is currently interested in working in a surgical unit, but will decide while she is experiencing her practical training.
    As a Commonwealth Legacy scholar, Dodd will mentor future scholarship recipients and participate in statewide events, such as the Student Leadership Conference, scheduled for fall. Commonwealth Legacy Scholars will also be featured in the Virginia Community College System’s Annual Report and on its website.


    Learning community created to support student success at Paul D. Camp Community College

    Spanish Basics 1Practical Nursing student Cynthia Thibeault looks over a Spanish word search exercise during the Spanish Basics Learning Community. Not pictured are Ellis “Trey” Cofield of Student Activities and administrative faculty members Dr. Alan Harris and Dr. Hyler Scott.
    Dr. Sandra Walker is leading a Spanish Basics Learning Community this summer on the Hobbs Suffolk and the Franklin campuses. The idea behind the “community” is that faculty, staff and students participate and learn in the sessions together.
    “Research indicates that learning communities of this type allow for the development of positive relationships,” said Walker. “The student experience improves and therefore, retention moves in a more positive direction as well.”
    The class sessions focus on exploring the culture and history of Spanish-speaking countries, with a refresher on the Spanish language. Walker is a College Success Coach on the Hobbs Suffolk Campus for Students Transitioning through Education Programs Successfully (STEPS), one of the Chancellor’s College Success Coach Initiatives.
    For more information, contact Dr. Walker at swalker@pdc.edu or 757-925-6326.

    Spanish Basics 2Practical Nursing student Tarice Thomas and nursing faculty member Rudean Harrell study some Spanish words during class on the Hobbs Suffolk Campus.


    Paul D. Camp Community College Registrar retires after nearly 43 years of service

    Barbara ButlerBarbara Butler knows a thing or two about Paul D. Camp Community College. After all, she enrolled in classes when the institution first opened in 1971 and was hired by the college almost immediately after she graduated.
    After 43 years of service to the college, she has recently announced her retirement. “I’ll miss the interaction with the staff and students,” the registrar said, “but it’s time.”
    She married right out of high school. Her first born was about two years old when Butler decided to register for classes at PDCCC. “I always knew that I wanted to further my education,” she said. “I wanted to do something different than my parents. They were farmers in Carrsville, where I was born and raised.”
    Registration was held in the old Thornton Livesay building in downtown Franklin while the college building was being erected. “The building still wasn’t quite finished when classes were supposed to begin in August,” she recalled. “So we started in September. We were on the quarter system then, so we still finished the 15 weeks in December.”
    While enrolled at PDCCC, she held her first job in the bookstore at the college as a work-study student. “I worked for Marie Hornek,” she said. “I loved that job.”
    Butler graduated from PDCCC with an associate’s degree in secretarial science in June 1973, the second class of graduates at the new college. “There were nearly 100 graduating,” she said. “We walked in procession from the building to Armory Field, where the ceremony was held.” She also attended the first graduation at the college. “There were 10 in the first graduating class and the ceremony was held in the library,” Butler said.
    By the end of June, she received a phone call from the college, asking her to apply for an admissions clerk position. She was hired and began work on July 1, 1973. “I worked with Kay Meditz, Virginia Fowler and Mr. Hank Rowe,” she recalled. “And since then, I have worked under the late Joy Collier, Jerry Standahl, Monette Williams, Joe Edenfield and now Trina Jones.”
    Jones has nothing but praise for Butler and her service to the college. She said, “Barbara has served under all presidents and interim presidents of the college. She shared that she has seen at least three generations of students and their family members. This certainly speaks to the level of commitment that she has to Paul D. Camp Community College.
    “Over the years, she has acquired an abundance of knowledge in her direct expertise, as well as the inner workings of the college. She will certainly be missed.”
    Butler has seen many transitions in processes, programs and personnel over the years at the college.
    “One thing that stands out is that the college used to use a computer card that had the student’s name and classes they were taking on it. After tuition was paid at the business office, the cards would be stacked in a box and taken to computing services, where they had to put them all in the system to get us registered.”
    Butler, a Suffolk resident, plans to spend more time with her grandchildren, other family members and friends. “I have a cousin in Philadelphia and in-laws in New Jersey I’d like to visit,” she said. “So I may take a few trips, including a cruise with one of my cousins.”
    She earned a bachelor’s degree in organizational management from St. Paul’s College, and a degree in religious studies and a master’s of divinity from Virginia University in Lynchburg. She is a long-time member and past president of the PDCCC Classified Personnel Association, now the PDCCC Classified Staff Council.
    “I would tell the person who has this job after me to love the people and enjoy the work,” she said.
    Butler’s retirement will be effective September 1.


    Paul D. Camp Community College hosts Chick-fil-A Cow

    Chick-fil-A Cow and CharlottePaul D. Camp Community College’s Student Government Association hosted a social event on the Franklin Campus July 15. The activity featured a visit from the famous Chick-fil-A bovine himself, pictured above with Barnes and Noble Bookstore Manager Charlotte Rush and a favorite PDCCC sweatshirt. Participants enjoyed fellowship, chicken sandwiches, music and games.


    Paul D. Camp Community College holds educational event for Practical Nursing students

    The Paul D. Camp Community College Nursing Department and Office of Student Activities sponsored an educational event for the Practical Nursing program students on the Hobbs Suffolk Campus on July 9 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Attendance was mandatory, but casual, and was focused on providing students with fun learning activities, collaboration building exercises and content review. Lunch was provided outside, where there were fun things to do, such as balloon shaving and sack races.

    blacklight webThe use of a blacklight and Glo-Germ revealed whether hands were washed properly during one exercise.

    paperwork webLaShay Johnson, left, and Dewanda Brown conduct head-to-toe assessments based on “complaints” and other data collected.

    PN students donning masksCynthia Thibeault, left, and Christie McClenny practice the proper way to put on and take off personal protective equipment.

    PN students in sim labUrsula Sutton and Bryce Lawrence prepare a bed bath for the “patient” in the sim lab.


    Paul D. Camp Community College graduates first class of Certified Production Technicians

    First CPT Graduates webGraduates Daniel Simonsen, from left, Antonio Elliott and Maurice Britt with CPT Instructor Terry Hayes.
    The Paul D. Camp Community College Division of Workforce Development recently graduated its first class of Certified Production Technicians.
    The new non-credit program was developed by Manufacturing Skills Standards Council (MSSC) and focuses on industry-related, core-competency standards.
    “MSSC is a nationally portable, industry-recognized certification that focuses on high performance, technologically advanced production,” said Program Coordinator Angela Lawhorne.
    Students earned certificates in Safety, Quality Practices and Measurement; Manufacturing Processes and Production; Maintenance Awareness; and Green Production. In addition, they completed a Career Readiness Certificate, as well as full national certification as a Certified Production Technician.
    “They completed a 10-week training program consisting of five modules,” Lawhorne said. “The key work activities, training and assessments fall under these modules. They are Safety; Manufacturing Processes & Production; Green Production; Quality Practices & Management; and Maintenance Awareness.
    For more information, contact the Workforce Development Center at 757-569-6050.


    Forklift, Forklift Clamp Truck and Reach Truck Operator Certificate Training Offered in August at Paul D. Camp Community College

    Forklift, Forklift Clamp Truck and Reach Truck Operator Certificate Course training will be held Tuesday-Thursday, Aug. 11 through 13, 2015 from 5 to 10 p.m. at the Paul D. Camp Community College Hobbs Suffolk Campus, 271 Kenyon Road.
    “With new construction and the expansion of existing facilities, the demand for warehouse and distribution center employees is increasing every day,” said PDCCC Program Director Bob Hayes.” In 2013, the annual mean wage of material moving workers in Virginia was $34,790-$40,880.
    The program provides training for warehouse and distribution safety awareness, OSHA safety procedures, and forklift, reach truck and clamp truck driving. Upon successful completion of the course, participants receive a forklift operator’s certificate, a reach truck certificate and an OSHA safety certificate.
    The cost of the course training is $150. Scholarships are available. Those interested must pre-register by calling the College’s Regional Workforce Development Center at 757-569-6050. For more information, call the Workforce Center or visit www.pdc.edu/workforce-development/.


    Humanities students at Paul D. Camp Community College try their hand at spear throwing

    group demonstrationPaul D. Camp Community College Humanities 211 students Adriene Muhammad, above from left, adjunct instructor Felice Hancock, Jennifer Griffin and Daena Mousso, watch a demonstration this week from William Hancock, local historian and artifact replication specialist, on how to launch a spear using his reproduction atlatl, which increases the force and distance of the weapon. Hunters would have used the atlatl to take down game from afar from around 3000 to 1200 B.C. in Virginia, according to Felice, who is also volunteer chairman of the Western Tidewater Humanities Council. Standing with them is Dr. Michael Barber, right, state archaeologist with the Virginia Department of Historic Resources, who presented the prehistory of Western Tidewater to the summer class designed for educators. The students practiced using the “ancient weapon,” Felice said. “They had a great time in their efforts, but admitted they would starve without much more practice.”Bill Hancock demonstrates


    Agreement between Paul D. Camp and Tidewater community colleges allows students to transfer credits to TCC’s Studio Arts program

    An agreement established by two local community colleges will allow students who have completed the General Education Certificate at Paul D. Camp Community College to transfer the 33 credits to Tidewater Community College’s Associate of Applied Arts in Studio Arts.
    “A large number of students, particularly our Suffolk residents, enroll each year in TCC’s Associate of Applied Arts in Studio Arts,” said PDCCC Vice President of Academic and Student Development Dr. Tara Atkins-Brady. “This agreement will allow students to take half the credits needed for the A.A.A. degree from PDCCC, earn the General Education Certificate from PDCCC, and do so more economically.”
    The studio arts program at TCC gives students extensive studio experience and prepares them for employment in art-related venues, such as museums, art centers and galleries.
    “While this partnership allows students the opportunity to earn a General Education Certificate and the A.A.A. in Studio Arts, it also provides options of completing specializations within the Studio Arts degree,” said Christina Rupsch, director of TCC’s Visual Arts Center in Olde Towne Portsmouth. “These specializations include Photographic Media Arts, Glass and Pre-Art Therapy.”
    In order to complete the General Education certificate with credits that transfer to TCC’s program, students will take Drawing I, College Composition I and II, College Success Skills, Principles of Public Speaking, History of World Civilization I and II, a Social Science elective, Math elective and Lab Science sequence.
    “We are very excited about this partnership, which increases educational opportunities for students at an affordable cost through collaboration with our sister college,” Atkins-Brady said.
    Rupsch approached Atkins-Brady approximately a year ago regarding the creation of a transfer agreement such as this.
    Atkins-Brady said Rupsch was “instrumental in vetting the idea with TCC leadership, including Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Daniel DeMarte, Portsmouth Campus Provost Dr. Michelle Woodhouse and Associate Vice President for Academics Dr. Kellie Sorey.”
    “Our institutions worked together on the necessary programmatic revisions and other details to develop an agreement that is a win-win for our shared students and the colleges,” Atkins-Brady said.
    The transfer agreement is effective for the upcoming academic year. PDCCC classes begin Aug. 21. Interested students should consult their PDCCC advisor and review the program requirements in each college’s catalog. The PDCCC College Catalog is available online at www.pdc.edu/college-catalog. The TCC College Catalog is available online at www.tcc.edu/catalog.


    Paul D. Camp Community College nursing student to earn associate degree while simultaneously taking classes toward bachelor’s degree

    Shal Biacsi 1Shal Biacsi prepares a sterile dressing in the nursing lab at PDCCC.
    Although math and science were subjects at which Shal Biacsi excelled, she had never thought of applying that knowledge to the nursing field.
    “I didn’t know what they actually did,” she said. “I always thought of nurses as supporting other professions, rather than existing as its own medical profession.”
    Biacsi, 42, is now the first student at PDCCC to concurrently take classes toward her Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing at Old Dominion University while completing the Associate’s Degree in Nursing at PDCCC.
    “She is a pioneer, so to speak,” said Associate Professor of Nursing Carol Wright. “She is an outstanding and highly intelligent student.”
    Biacsi was enrolled in the biochemistry program at Old Dominion University. Two weeks from beginning her classes, she ran into a former colleague who was in the nursing program at Paul D. Camp Community College.
    “She was telling me things about nursing that I didn’t know and I realized that the career opportunities in nursing were more plentiful in this field than in biochemistry.”
    Biacsi then made another discovery after receiving further guidance from a friend who is a retired anesthesiologist.
    “He told me that most anesthetists are not doctors, but nurses,” Biacsi said. “That was a turning point for me. I was hooked on becoming a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA).”
    After she received approval from PDCCC’s Dean of Nursing and Allied Health Debbie Hartman to enroll in the concurrent program at ODU, she spoke with Chief Academic Advisor for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program at ODU Janice Hawkins.
    “I told Dean Hartman to ‘Let me be your poster child,’” she said. “I knew I could handle the course load and I’ve received tremendous support from both colleges.”
    Biacsi takes six to eight credits each semester online with ODU in addition to her 8 to 10 credits at PDCCC.
    “At ODU, there is a once a week due date, so the structure of the program gives me flexibility to complete my assignments,” she said. “Even though my ODU classes are online, I am exposed to other concurrent students in the program and other nursing students. I feel that I’m better prepared for this with the education I’m receiving from the instructors at PDCCC.”
    Biacsi earned an associate’s degree in Business Administration online at TCC and earned an associate’s degree in General Science from TCC. She will not graduate from ODU until she has graduated from PDCCC and passed the NCLEX RN licensure exam. Biacsi will then be awarded 33 transfer credits toward the completion of the BSN degree.
    A member of the National Student Nurses’ Association, Biacsi will graduate from PDCCC in May 2016 and ODU in August 2016. She hopes to work locally.
    “I’ve been to 16 different schools in my 12 years of grade school,” she said. “I would like to stay put, and I’m making this area home.”
    She encouraged others to take advantage of the concurrent program at ODU through PDCCC. “It’s only two years and it’s worth it,” she said. “Everyone in the nursing program is welcoming and helpful, but they don’t hold your hand. And they really emphasize respect for the field.”
    “Who knows, maybe I’ll come back here and teach,” she said.

    Shal Biacsi 2Shal Biacsi listens to the heart rate of a “patient,” in the simulation lab.


    Paul D. Camp Community College expands Welding Program for fall 2015 semester

    Welding Lab at PDCCCPaul D. Camp Community College has expanded its Welding Program to benefit both its students and area industry.
    “The program will be more comprehensive, as well as provide students with additional instruction in order for them to prepare for the American Welding Society (AWS) certification,” said Industrial Trades Lead Faculty Richard Baker.
    AWS certification testing is now available through a partnership with Thomas Nelson Community College that allows students to take the testing at a reduced cost.
    In addition, the program will be a 24-credit hour curriculum, which enables students to apply for financial aid.
    “This will help a lot of students who cannot afford their classes,” said Baker. “Students will still be able to take
    The program will offer courses in pipe welding, plate welding and fabrication. Registration is currently under way for fall semester at PDCCC. Classes begin Aug. 21. For more information, contact Baker at rbaker@pdc.edu .


    First-generation student moves to Suffolk after 9/11, makes career path at Paul D. Camp Community College

    Wanda OldenWanda Olden was working in the “Big Apple” when she decided to move to Suffolk in 2003. The chaos that ensued after 9/11 is what eventually sent her to her family’s hometown.
    Olden was working at the New York City Department of Probation in lower Manhattan, five blocks away from the towers when the terrorist attack occurred. “I was on the 14th floor of the building in which I worked, watching the first tower burn,” she recalled. “It looked like a normal fire.”
    But after she and co-workers saw the second plane intentionally slam into the second tower, they realized the scope of the situation. Along with the devastation, loss of lives and heightened security, it became difficult to travel to and from work in that area. “People were afraid to take the subway, which resulted in two-hour bus rides,” she said.
    Olden’s parents, grandparents and great-grandparents also were from the Virginia Peanut City and after vacationing there one year, she began thinking about owning her own home there as well. “I always loved Suffolk,” she said.
    She settled here and worked different jobs before being hired for a non-profit organization. Olden worked there for five years before the economy took a downturn, which affected the amount of donations coming into the organization. Olden’s job was one of the first that was cut.
    “It was like someone pulled the rug from under me,” she said. She worked some temporary jobs for a while and then met Vernetta Mason at the Virginia Employment Commission. “She asked me if I had considered going to college and said that I would be a perfect candidate for the On-Ramp Program for dislocated workers,” said Olden.
    “I owe everything to her. If it weren’t for her guidance, I wouldn’t be earning my degree.”
    The On-Ramp Program at PDCCC provides funding for tuition, books, supplies and fees to those eligible. Without it, Olden wouldn’t be able to afford tuition. Thanks to the funding, along with support from Lisha Wolfe of the Career Development Center, Counselor Dr. Hyler Scott, Assistant Professor of English Ronette Jacobs, and former PDCCC President Dr. Paul Wm. Conco, Olden, 50, is now working for the Suffolk Literacy Council and is on schedule to complete her associate’s degree in Business Management in 2016. And when she does, she’ll be the first in three generations of her family to graduate from college. She has also recently accepted an internship with the Suffolk Education Foundation.
    “Extra-curricular activities don’t mean as much to me anymore,” she said. “The majority of the time, I am in my office at home, at work or school. But, I feel complete. “Once my mind was made up to attend college, I gave 150 percent to make a better future for myself.”
    Olden, however, is very involved with activities at the college. She is a Presidential Student Ambassador and was selected to attend the Student Leadership Conference. She serves as president of the PDCCC Literary Club and has served as an English tutor for Student Support Services. She is also a member of the Students Transitioning through Education Programs Successfully or STEPS Program and has completed Microsoft certification through RFK Solutions.
    The non-traditional student has earned the following scholarships while attending PDCCC:

    • Franklin Woman’s Club Scholarship
    • PDCCC Classified Staff Council Scholarship
    • The highly prestigious Valley Proteins Fellowship through the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education.

    “PDCCC is a great start to find information that can enrich your life, whether your goal is certification classes or a degree,” she said. “I found that out the day I set my foot on this campus— and I never left. I wish I had attended college 30 years ago.”
    Olden plans to further her education at a four-year college or university, majoring in business administration while solidifying her career goals.


    May 2015 Pharmacy Technician graduate lands job at University of North Carolina hospital

    David JohnsonDavid Johnson fills a “prescription” in the pharmacy lab at Paul D. Camp Community College.
    David B. Johnson is the first student from the Paul D. Camp Community College Pharmacy Technician program to get a job in a hospital setting so soon after completing his studies.
    “Pharmacy technicians don’t usually get hired right out of school to work in a hospital,” said Program Director and Instructor Elaine Beale. “It generally takes a few years of practice, usually at a retail pharmacy, before being considered for a job like this.”
    Johnson, 33, graduated in May and on July 6, will begin working as an inpatient pharmacy technician at University of North Carolina (UNC) Healthcare in Chapel Hill, NC.
    “UNC Healthcare will soon be a 900-bed facility,” he said. “I am excited to have the opportunity to work alongside other future pharmacists being trained at a highly respected pharmacy school.”
    Johnson was also the first of eight in the third class of Pharmacy Technicians at PDCCC to take and pass the national exam for certification. “I love competition,” he said. “I felt like my classmates and I became a family and a few of us competed often. I wanted to be the first to successfully pass the exam, as it was my way of empowering them to take the exam. And earn their national certification as well.”
    He highly recommends completing most of the program before taking the national exam. “It’s not an easy test, but once you’re certified by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board, you can attain a license to work in any state. I have both Virginia and North Carolina licenses.”
    Johnson has been working in healthcare for over 12 years, most recently with the registration team at the Sentara Norfolk General Hospital Emergency Department. He had previously been working toward a business degree at a community college, but realized his passion was healthcare.
    “I was a good business student, but my heart just wasn’t in it,” he said. “I had considered enrolling in a Pharmacy Technician Program for years. My niece, Tori, graduated from NC State University two years ago and her accomplishment not only made me a proud uncle, but also inspired me to return to college to pursue my dreams.”
    When he began looking at schools that offered the program, Paul D. Camp Community College stood out to him even though he would have to commute to Franklin from Chesapeake.
    “PDCCC was the best choice,” Johnson said. “Mrs. Beale responded to me so quickly. I could feel her passion for this program, so it was an easy decision for me.”
    He added, “Choosing this program was the best decision I ever made. Mrs. Beale wants every student to succeed and gives them every opportunity to do so.”
    Since the Pharmacy Technician Career Studies Certificate Program is a 25-credit hour program, students are eligible to apply for financial aid to help offset the cost. “Being able to apply for and use financial aid was a big help to me,” he said.
    Johnson gained clinical experience working with Pharmacy Technician Pamela Ritsch and Pharmacist Margaret Rosner at Western Tidewater Free Clinic from November 2014 to February 2015 and Sentara Norfolk General In-Patient Pharmacy from February 2015 to present.
    His goals include pursuing some additional specialty training for IV admixture certification offered in Texas and becoming a pharmacist.
    “UNC is one of the top pharmacy schools in the country,” he said. “It’s a 4-year graduate program and there are many prerequisites to even apply. I have a lot of science classes left to take, but I’m strongly considering it.”
    Johnson, a native of Elizabeth City, NC, plans to relocate to the Raleigh/Durham area of North Carolina in late June.


    Paul D. Camp Community College Hosts Business After Hours

    Randy HVAC LabPaul D. Camp Community College hosted a progressive reception during a Franklin-Southampton Area Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours on June 8, 2015. PDCCC Vice President of Workforce Development Randy Betz, above photo, shows and explains the HVAC lab while Foundation Board Member Bill Billings shoots a photo of participants. David Lorenz, below photo, demonstrates the robotic arm in the Robotics Lab. Attendees also visited the Nursing Simulation Lab and the Library Learning Commons on the Franklin Campus of the college.David Lorenz Robotics


    Paul D. Camp Community College Offers Unique Photography Class

    Whitenack S-Hillside Harbor TownThis photograph, Hillside Harbor Town, was taken by Shirley Whitenack.
    Paul D. Camp Community College’s Division of Workforce Development is offering “Travel and Vacation Photography” class with award-winning photographer Shirley Whitenack as instructor.
    She will teach participants about equipment and techniques professionals use to get outstanding magazine grade photographs through classroom instruction and field trips. The schedule is as follows:

    Date Time Place
    Wednesday, July 8 6-8:30 p.m. PDCCC at Smithfield, 253 James Street, room TBA
    Wednesday, July 15 5:30-7:30 p.m. Fort Boykin in Smithfield
    July 18
    3-8:30 p.m. Hampton Carousel, dinner, Ft. Monroe
    Wednesday, July 22 6-8:30 p.m. Smithfield area
    Wednesday, July 29 6-8:30 p.m. PDCCC at Smithfield, 253 James Street, room TBA

    Participants should have working knowledge of their camera. Bring a camera, the camera manual and film/digital media. A tripod is also recommended. The deadline to register is July 5. The cost of the class is $140. For more information, call the Workforce Office, 569-6050, or visit www.pdc.edu/workforce-development/


    More Upward Bound students at Paul D. Camp Community College taking advantage of Dual Enrollment classes

    UB College Graduates Group webSeated from left: Virginia Goode, Erica Staton, Jelisia Artis, Saleana Saunders, Jeanetta Sessoms, Tyreckka Hawks, Kirstyn Andrew, Kateisha Davis and Jasmine Anderson. In back: Upward Bound Director Travis Parker, Rhema Johnson, Shaleetta Hicks, Lexus Isom, Shaunye Burton, Katrina Williams, Abigail Idisi, Shadeejah Hunt, Shamar Ballard, Nora Hathan, Armirah Stephens and Upward Bound Counselor Angel Cashwell. Not pictured is Kea Windsor.
    Since the Upward Bound Program began at Paul D. Camp Community College in 2008, it has not only grown in popularity, it has grown in dual enrollment students as well.
    At a celebration for the Upward Bound college graduates held June 4 at the college’s Regional Workforce Development Center, Counselor Angel Cashwell said, “We went from begging students to join the program in the beginning to being here tonight to celebrate 20 Upward Bound students who have graduated with associate and bachelor degrees. Eight of those earned associate’s degrees at PDCCC before graduating from high school.”
    The Upward Bound Program is a federal TRIO Program aimed at assisting 9th-12th graders with continuing their education at a postsecondary institution. The program serves 50 students from Franklin, Lakeland and Southampton high schools. The Dual Enrollment Program provides the opportunity for high school students to earn college credits while working toward their high school diploma, including completing a degree or certificate if they choose to go that route.
    According to Upward Bound Director Travis Parker, an objective from the Virginia Department of Education requires a percentage of students undergo a rigorous course of study while in the program.
    “We are meeting that objective by recommending the Dual Enrollment Program when appropriate,” said Parker. “The students who are eligible can use it as a springboard to complete their academic endeavors and ultimately, their career goals, sooner and cheaper. The DE program is high on our recommendation list to the UB students.”
    “Out of the 16 high school graduates Upward Bound has this year, seven have earned their associate’s degree at PDCCC and all of them have been accepted to a college for fall semester. Three out of the remaining nine are coming to PDCCC. The Class of 2014, only one of 13 of our students earned their associate’s.”
    Students praised the Upward Bound Program and staff during the celebration. “There were many days when I went to Mr. Parker crying and complaining,” said Armirah Stephens, 2014 Franklin High School and PDCCC Dual Enrollment graduate. “After a little while, Mr. Parker would ask, “’Are you finished’?” Parker’s “tough love” approach also prompted Stephens to add, “He has been like a second father to me.” Stephens was the first FHS graduate to simultaneously earn an associate’s degree at PDCCC.
    Jeanetta Sessoms, who graduated with an associate’s degree from PDCCC in Science in May, said “It is a magnificent program. I encourage all high school students to participate.”
    Those honored for earning bachelor’s degrees:

    • Shaleetta Hicks (FHS and University of Richmond 2014)
    • Katrina Williams (SHS, PDCCC and Regent University 2015)
    • Kea Windsor (LHS and Old Dominion University 2015)
    • Jelisia Artis (LHS and North Carolina Central University 2015)
    • Erica Staton (LHS and Liberty University 2015)

    Those honored for earning associate’s degrees:

    • Nora Hathan (FHS and PDCCC-Dual Enrollment)
    • Virginia Goode (FHS and PDCCC-Dual Enrollment)
    • Shamar Ballard (SHS and PDCCC-Dual Enrollment)
    • Rhema Johnson (SHS and PDCCC-Dual Enrollment)
    • Lexus Isom (LHS and PDCCC-Dual Enrollment)
    • Shaunye’ Burton (SHS and PDCCC-Dual Enrollment)
    • Shadeejah Hunt (FHS and PDCCC-Dual Enrollment)
    • Armirah Stephens (2014 FHS and PDCCC-Dual Enrollment)
    • Tyreckka Hawks (FHS and PDCCC)
    • Jasmine Anderson (SHS and PDCCC)
    • Jeanetta Sessoms (FHS and PDCCC)
    • Abigail Idisi (FHS and PDCCC)
    • Kirstyn Andrew (SHS and PDCCC)
    • Saleana Saunders (FHS and PDCCC)
    • Kateisha Davis (SHS and PDCCC 2014)
    • Katrina Williams (SHS and PDCCC 2014)

    Upward Bound has recently accepted 16 more high school students. Fourteen rising juniors and five sophomores will begin Dual Enrollment classes this summer with the goal of completing an associate’s degree and/or certificate from PDCCC.


    Paul D. Camp Community College student inspired to get back on track after personal struggles

    Micah ThomasDespite all his personal challenges, Micah Thomas didn’t give up on his education. He earned three scholarships, and was selected to represent the college at the Virginia General Assembly and the Student Leadership Conference since enrolling at PDCCC.
    When Micah Thomas lost his mother in 2005, he was only 10 years old.
    “It sent me off my path and I was kind of lost,” he said. “She was my motivation—my biggest inspiration.”
    Born and raised in Suffolk, Thomas graduated from Kings Fork High School in 2012. The youngest of six children, the first-generation student always knew that he wanted to go to college, as his parents had encouraged him to do. But his mother’s death left a void that made it difficult for Thomas to move forward with the same positive stride.
    But with the support of his sister and encouragement from others, he found the strength to return to his focus of continuing education during his senior year in high school when he took two advanced placement courses to make up “for lost time.” His interest in math and science was reignited during his AP Biology class with Mrs. Story.
    “By this time, my father was ill,” he said. And although Thomas qualified for eight college credits after scoring a perfect 5 on the AP Biology exam, his GPA wasn’t high enough to secure a full scholarship to a four-year college or university.
    “I didn’t want my father to have the added stress of paying for my college education,” he said. “I came to PDCCC with the mindset of applying for financial aid and if I didn’t qualify, I wasn’t going to go.”
    Thomas enrolled at PDCCC, taking mostly online computer science courses while also taking care of his dad, a responsibility that was increasing by the day for the 18-year-old. The only sibling still living in the household, Thomas was soon overwhelmed, struggling to take care of the bill payments, legal issues, medicine management and household maintenance, and keep up with his online classes. He ultimately had to withdraw from a couple of classes and received incomplete status in two others.
    Thomas’ father passed in February 2013 Thomas was now faced with tending to his father’s affairs, making funeral arrangements and preparing for out-of-town relatives. In addition, his father had only been able to take Thomas out for a few driving lessons during his illness.
    Visiting the Hobbs Suffolk Campus in Fall 2014, he met with Sandra Walker of the Students Transitioning through Education Programs Successfully (STEPS). “She did so much for me,” he said. “If it weren’t for her, I wouldn’t be here (in college) right now.”
    She supplied Thomas with resources and referred him to Student Support Services and the Career Development Center, where Lisha Wolfe helped him get funding through Opp Inc. and an internship with RFK Solutions. Prior to his internship, he took on a job in the computer lab as a work-study student.
    “I was able to take my training in the computer lab to RFK, and they suggested I get several IT certifications.” RFK began partnering with PDCCC to offer these certifications, and during his spring semester, Thomas was taking a full load of classes during the day, three hours of certification classes in the evening and working in the computer lab. He also served as a math tutor for Student Support Services and is currently the vice president of the PDCCC Literary Club.
    “There have been times when I forgot to eat,” he said. “But I felt like if I slowed down, I might stop.”
    When Thomas completes his studies this summer and graduates in May 2016, he will have earned his associate’s degree in General Studies-Computer Science, as well as certificates in General Education, Hardware & Software Support, and Computer Support Specialist. He plans to transfer to Old Dominion University this fall to earn his bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and apply to graduate school for biomedical engineering.
    “There are too many people I want to thank to list them all,” said Thomas. “But after coming here and receiving hope from so many others, I have been inspired to keep going.”


    Let the games begin

    Target WinnersThe Suffolk-based Target team celebrates after winning the LogistXGames, held at Northgate Logistics Center in North Suffolk on Thursday.
    By Matthew Ward
    Suffolk News-Herald
    LogistXGames Matthew WardRon Coleman was the first competitor up in the final event of the day: the box put.
    The box resting upon his outstretched palm just above his right shoulder — shot put-style, unsurprisingly — he sprinted toward the empty pallets stacked up as an obstacle.
    Just before he might have barreled into the pallets, Coleman stopped on a dime and transferred the momentum he’d generated through to his catapulting arm and into the box.
    With the effort, Coleman’s tendons jumped out and his eyes bulged. The box sailed through the air more than 30 feet, as the crowd that thronged the course under the high ceiling of Northgate Logistics Center cheering delightedly.
    Such was the heady atmosphere of the Hampton Roads LogistXGames, held in Suffolk for the second year running and bringing together eight teams of up to 10 members, fielded by area logistics companies.
    According to Lang Williams, its senior vice president in Hampton Roads, commercial real estate services firm CBRE started the games for several reasons, including to promote the importance of logistics, to recognize major logistics employers and their top employees, and to raise money for workforce development.
    Williams and Scott Flanders, who manages ACE Hardware’s Suffolk redistribution center, co-chaired the event.
    The games reportedly raised $10,000 for the Paul D. Camp Community College Foundation’s workforce development programs. The $8,000 from last year allowed the foundation to create an endowed workforce development scholarship.
    “From the bottom of my heart, I really appreciate your support of our programs, and most importantly your support of our students,” remarked Randy Betz, the college’s vice president of workforce development.
    Besides the box put, other events included the pallet puzzle sprint, pallet jack relay and the pick/pack hurdle. Each event was designed to test and showcase the skills logistics workers develop.
    After the box put, trophies were awarded, with Suffolk employees from Target, Expeditors International and QVC delivering the goods for first, second and third, respectively.
    “The whole reason why we are here is to get everybody together as a community” and promote workforce development, Flanders said.
    Williams said, “Thank you to all who participated for sticking your necks out, maybe getting embarrassed, and hopefully having some fun.”


    Paul D. Camp Community College Literary Club collects more than 400 books during drive

    book drive 4The Feed the Monster Book Drive held by the Paul D. Camp Community College Literary Club resulted in the collection of more than 400 books. According to Literary Club Advisor Ronette Jacobs, at least 300 of those books were children books, which were donated to J.P. King Jr. Middle School in Franklin June 2, 2015. Donations for the book drive came from PDCCC faculty and staff, and The Friends of the Suffolk Library. Literary Club President Wanda Olden of Suffolk, from left, member Sandy Haduck of Wakefield and Vice President Micah Thomas of Suffolk, who conceptualized the Feed the Monster Book Drive, stand with the books before they were packed and delivered. According to Jacobs, the children were very excited to receive the donation.book drive 3

    Calendar image