Jul
01
07/01/2018

Symposium focuses on opioid epidemic

KENYA SMITH/INTERN
The Tidewater News
 
The Paul D. Camp nursing class of 2019 hosted its second annual opioid symposium on Thursday evening in the Regional Workforce Development Center. The event featured key speakers that shared how the opioid epidemic has affected their lives. Each person also answered questions from the audience.
 
Opioid awareness advocate and Suffolk native Michael Dail shared a personal story about how the epidemic has affected his family.
 
He said, “It doesn’t matter what a person’s racial, religious, economic, or academic background is. An opioid addict could be anyone because my daughter was one.”
 
Dail’s daughter Victoria “Tori” Dail was an athlete and a 2012 honor graduate at Nansmond-Suffolk Academy. She then attended Virginia Wesleyan College and continued to play volleyball.
 
“After she graduated from high school, Tori was involved in an automobile accident that caused a concussion,” said Dail, “She was prescribed Percocet for her pain by her doctors, and that’s how her addiction started.”
 
That eventually lead to a heroin addiction. Tori’s father didn’t know about it until he found some empty pill capsules in Tori’s room in 2014. When confronted by her father about the capsules, Tori told him that they were just vitamins, but she finally admitted that she had an addiction. She was admitted to a detox program and stayed for six days. It seemed like everything turned out for the better until Nov. 10, 2016. That was the day that he found 21-year-old Tori dead from an overdose.
 
Dail hopes that telling his daughter’s story will help erase the stigma behind opioid addiction, educate people about how the opioid epidemic can hit close to home, and raise awareness about this crisis.
 
Another speaker was Del. Emily Brewer (R-64,). She talked about the efforts being made in the Virginia legislature to help combat the opioid epidemic.
 
“The legislation I co-patroned this year, HB 1469 would help fight the opioid crisis by holding drug dealers accountable,” said Brewer, “Basically, if you sell certain drugs and someone that you sold to has a fatal overdose, you could be charged with felony homicide.”
 
Because rural areas in Virginia are struggling with the opioid crisis, the bill didn’t pass. However, another bill was introduced this year that could help fight the opioid crisis in those rural areas.
 
“I was glad for the opportunity to support SB 226, introduced by Sen. Bill Stanley, which did pass this year and will greatly help rural Virginia in fighting the opioid crisis” she added.
 
Brewer also explained that SB 226 will require veterinarians who dispense controlled substances to report certain information about the animal and its owner to the Prescription Monitoring Program.
 
Other guest speakers included recovering opioid addict H. Harvey, licensed counselor Meredith Wren and Sentara Norfolk General’s maternity clinical manager and nurse Janel Moore. After the speakers shared their stories, the nursing class presented a 14-minute documentary, “Chasing the Dragon: The Life of an Opiate Addict.”

Jun
26
06/26/2018

Paul D. Camp Community College honors five longtime board members for dedicated service

outgoing board members groupPatricia Sowell, from left, Kermit Hobbs, Kisha Watford and Syretha Wright were honored at a recent PDCCC Local College Board meeting for their longtime outstanding service. Richard Brooks was unable to attend the meeting.
 
At a recent meeting of the Paul D. Camp Community College Local College Board, five outgoing members were recognized for their outstanding service.
 
The following have served at least the maximum of two consecutive terms, or eight years:
 
Richard BrooksRichard Brooks (City of Suffolk)
Kermit HobbsKermit Hobbs (City of Suffolk)
Patricia SowellPatricia Sowell (Isle of Wight County)
Kisha WatfordKisha Watford (Southampton County)
Syretha C. WrightSyretha Wright (Southampton County)
In addition, Brooks and Sowell, initially appointed to fill unexpired terms, have served a total of 10 years each. Watford, also appointed to fill an unexpired term, has served nine years. Members are appointed by their localities.
 
“Paul D. Camp is so fortunate to have such dedicated board members who genuinely care about the college and its community, and believe in our mission,” said President Dr. Dan Lufkin. “We owe them so much for their generosity and guidance on programs and other college-related matters.”
 
For the outgoing board members, it is a consensus that their departure is bittersweet. Brooks, who spent 38 years in education and administration at the time he was appointed, served as chair of the board in 2015-16.
 
“I am grateful to have worked with such dedicated and outstanding people,” he said. “I am elated to have been a part and a witness to the growth of this institution.”
 
He noted that the growth of the dual enrollment program, the launch of the Cybersecurity program, expansion of the Nursing program and the creation of the Athletics program are among the highlights of his tenure.
 
Sowell, board chair from 2011-13, has also served as chair of the executive and financial services committees and board co-chair from 2009-11.
“It is important to me to represent Isle of Wight County, because I live in Carrsville, in the southern end of the county,” she said. “I try to ensure that our concerns for the future and education of our youth are addressed.”
 
Sowell noted she is fortunate to have had the opportunity to impact the education, and therefore, the lives of PDCCC students. “Change is good,” she added.
 
Watford feels like representing her locality allows her to act as a liaison between the board and her surrounding community. “I’m appreciative for the opportunity to have learned the ins and outs of college business, but I’m ready to pass the torch to afford the next member the same opportunity,” she said.
 
She said that she has been pleased with PDCCC’s community involvement and ways they have engaged the public with their events.
 
“My advice for incoming members would be to learn, be a voice for the college, as well as for people of the community to help grow our PDCCC, make a difference and enjoy.”
 
As a retired educator, Syretha Wright feels that it’s an important task to serve on the Local College Board. “Education is the key to living a productive life,” she said. She thinks it is time for new people with new ideas to serve and cited the fact that she is confident the college is in good hands at this time. “I will continue to recruit students to attend PDCCC,” she said. “I feel that it is a great place to start higher education courses and save some money while receiving a quality education.”
 
Hobbs, whose father is namesake of the Oliver K. Hobbs Suffolk Campus after he generously donated land for the current site of the college, helped promote the initial idea presented by Governor Mills Godwin to construct the Virginia Community College System. After visiting numerous organizations in the local area to raise awareness and support, the referendum passed.
 
“I felt that, to a tiny degree, I had a hand in its success,” he said. “The Oliver K. Hobbs Suffolk Campus was a source of pride for my father and my family. My opportunity to serve on the board was a perfect way for me to follow through on our family’s interest in our community college.”
 
Another perfect way for him to help from the board was to use his personnel management skills to serve on the committee for the selection of the current president.
 
“This was the most rewarding experience I enjoyed on the board,” he recalled. “Dr. Lufkin’s success at PDCCC proves that all of us, together, made the right selection of a new president.”
 
Hobbs served as chair elect from 2016-2018, and although he believes it’s time for “fresh ideas and perspectives,” he is a little sad to have completed his terms. “We have wonderful shared experiences that we will never forget,” he said. “We will preserve and cherish our friendships forever.”
 
In addition, June Fleming was honored for her 2-year stent as chairman coming to a close at the end of June. The following appointments were conducted during the meeting, effective from July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019:

  • Jimmy Strozier (Southampton County) was reappointed for his second, 4-year term and will serve as chair elect
  • Dr. Davida Harrell-Williams, will serve as chair
  • Allard Allston (Southampton County) will fill Wright’s expired seat
  • Norma Jones (Southampton County) will fill Watford’s expired seat
  • Dr. Lynette Grant (Isle of Wight County) will fill Sowell’s expired seat

Sarah Sugars has been appointed to fill Brooks’ Suffolk seat since the meeting, while the expired seat of Hobbs is still pending.
GavelJune Fleming receives an engraved gavel for her 2-year term as chair of the board.

Jun
08
06/08/2018

PDCCC to present second annual opioid symposium

STEPHEN FALESKI/STAFF WRITER
The Tidewater News
 
On Thursday, June 28, Paul D. Camp Community College’s nursing class of 2019 will present the school’s second annual symposium on opioid addiction. This will be held at the Workforce Development Center from 6 to 8 p.m.
 
The event will feature a showing of the documentary “Chasing the Dragon” and a panel of guest speakers. Speakers who have agreed to participate include Del. Emily Brewer (R-64); H. Harvey, a recovering addict; and Michael Dail, an opiate awareness advocate.
 
“The purpose of the Symposium is to shed a light on the current opioid crisis in the United States and the state of Virginia,” said PDCCC nursing student Tori Ricks. “The misuse of and addiction to opioids, including prescription pain relievers, heroin, and synthetic opioids such as fentanyl, is a serious national crisis that affects public health as well as social and economic welfare. The event aims to spotlight legislators who are working endlessly to help fight the misuse and addiction to opioids as well as give recovering addicts, opiate awareness advocates and individuals who have lost loved ones to opioids the opportunity to speak and share their stories on the devastating problem within our local communities, county and country.”
 
Ricks added that she and the entire nursing class of 2019 are involved in the symposium — a total of around 30 students.
 
“The symposium is actually something that was started by last year’s PDCCC RN nursing students as a mental awareness project during the semester of studying Psychiatric Nursing and Mental Health,” Ricks said.
 
The nursing class has also invited representatives of local law enforcement, fire, emergency services and health departments from the cities of Franklin and Suffolk, as well as Isle of Wight and Southampton counties to hand out literature. Representatives of Affinity Healthcare, the methadone clinic that opened in the Airway Shopping Center last year, have also been invited.
 
The nursing class’s research revealed that in 2016, there were two opioid overdose deaths reported in Southampton County. According to the event flier, every day, more than 115 people in the United States die after overdosing on opioids. The National Institute on Drug Abuse estimates that more than 64,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2016.

May
31
05/31/2018

Collaboration results in $20,000 donation to PDCCC for new training facility

Thanks to cohesive community partnerships, Paul D. Camp Community College has seen the new Regional Warehouse and Distribution Training Facility progress from concept to fruition.

Opp Inc DonationVice President of Workforce Innovation Steve Cook, from left, and President and CEO of Opportunity Inc. (OppInc), Shawn Avery, present PDCCC President Dr. Dan Lufkin, Vice President of Institutional Advancement and Workforce Development Dr. Renee Felts and Workforce Development Director Angela Lawhorne with a $20,000 check to support programs and equipment at the new 5,000-square-foot facility on Armory Drive.
 
The building houses warehouse and classroom space for non-credit workforce training, such as Forklift, Reach Truck and Clamp Truck certificate program, OSHA 10 certification training, and the new Warehouse & Distribution Foundations course.
 
A new Certified Logistics Technician program will begin there in fall. For information about the facility or workforce training programs, contact Lawhorne at alawhorne@pdc.edu or (757) 569-6064.

May
31
05/31/2018

Two community colleges will benefit from LogistXGames proceeds

An upcoming event will highlight logistics with a focus on teamwork, fun, fellowship and fundraising.
 
The 5th Annual Hampton Roads LogistXGames will take place Thursday, June 7, beginning at 10:00 a.m., at Virginia Regional Commerce Park building B, 5391 Virginia Regional Drive, Suffolk.
 
This annual competition is aimed at team building, raising awareness, and providing networking for logistics employees while promoting the logistics industry locally, regionally and nationally.
 
Net proceeds will help fund scholarships for workforce programs at Paul D. Camp Community College and Tidewater Community College. “The funds raised during this event are critical for our workforce students,” said PDCCC Vice President of Institutional Advancement and Workforce Development. “In many cases, finances are an issue. Having some assistance can mean the difference between whether or not a potential student is able to enroll.”
 
The following four events will take place for logistics industry teams at the 2018 competition:

  • The Pallet Puzzle Sprint – Three-person teams each take 36 different-sized corrugated boxes from floor locations, assemble them and stack them on a pallet. The team with the quickest time wins.
  • Pallet Jack Relay – Three-person teams participate in a timed pallet jack relay race through an obstacle course while keeping the boxes on the pallet.
  • Pick/Pack Hurdle – Three-person teams move boxes from the pallet to a warehouse racking system while memorizing positioning and SKUs in a timed race.
  • Box Put –Teams will have packed one box with fragile bottled liquid items, in the Pallet Puzzle Sprint event, utilizing selected packaging material from various options. During the Box Put event one team member will then throw the box for distance and accuracy without breaking the contents.

Last year, Givens won first place, Keurig Green Mountain earned second and Emser Tile came in third.
 
The following are the sponsors for the 2018 LogistXGames event:
 
In-Kind and Other Sponsors
Atlantic Potties
Hallwood Pallets
PeakLogix
Pepsico
Prime 3 Software
Target
The Lee Group
 
Bronze Sponsor ($1,000)
Isle of Wight County
Keurig Green Mountain
Remedy Staffing and CostPlus
RRMM Design Build
Unyson
Wall, Einhorn & Chernitzer
 
Silver Sponsor ($2,500)
Expeditors International
Givens
QVC
Southeast Industrial Equipment
The Port of Virginia
Williamson & Wilmer
 
Gold Sponsor ($5,000)
Tidewater Staffing
 
Founding Sponsor
CBRE Hampton Roads

May
25
05/25/2018

Budding artist no longer brushes off urge to paint

~Discovery of talent in Encore Learning leads to creation of home studio~

Charlotte's WorksCharlotte McKeller has a newfound talent and love of painting after enrolling in the Encore Learning program at the PDCCC Workforce Development Center. Paintings, from left, are titled,
“Mountain Reflections,” “Waterfall in the Woods,” “Freezing Lake,” and “Passion Flow.” The painting she is holding is called, “Floral Bouquet.”

 
Move over Monet. There’s a new landscape artist in town.
 
Charlotte McKeller, now 66, has discovered a newfound talent after enrolling in the Encore Learning program at the Paul D. Camp Community College Regional Workforce Development Center three years ago.
 
“My friend, Marguerite Leathers, told me about the program. I have taken many classes there since, such as genealogy, film studies, stamp collecting, card making, early Alzheimer’s
detection, cancer awareness, coffee tasting, fun and games, adult coloring, and of course, painting.”
 
McKeller always knew she had some creative talent. In fact, even in grade school, she fared well with art projects.
 
“I doodled, and eventually sketched some, but I really used my creativity as an adult when I was a professional hair stylist, owning my own salon for a few years,” she recalled. “Styling hair is creating a work of art that complements a client’s appearance and makes them happy.”
 
When she retired in 2010, McKeller couldn’t find any local painting classes in which to enroll. There were also none offered initially in the Encore program. When Director Teri Zurfluh asked for the participants’ input on classes for the next semester, McKeller made the obvious suggestion.
 
“For many years, I have dreamed of learning to paint!” she said. “After painting a red cardinal in our first class, I was hooked. With each class, my paintings began looking better and better, and I began gaining confidence in myself as a painter.”
 
The Brushstrokes instructor, Twyla Duke, was impressed with the class, particularly the progress made by McKeller, who asked Duke to make a list of what she would need to set up her own studio in her home.
 
“She brought in her first big painting of a mountain scape and lake that she had completed at home,” said Duke. “We were all in awe of her painting and she was so thrilled at the way it turned out. Although she told me it was because of the techniques that I taught her in class, I cannot teach anyone how to paint, just offer a little guidance. I am so proud of Charlotte for stepping out.”
 
McKeller now spends some time each day in her new studio at home. She loves to watch the tutorials of her favorite artist, Bob Ross, and much like her inspiration, likes to paint landscapes, mountains, and reflections. She also enjoys creating floral works. Currently, her medium of choice is acrylic, although sometime later, she would like to try her artistic hand at watercolor.
 
“If it were not for the Encore Learning program, Teri and Twyla, I would not have my own studio and would not know how to paint,” she said. “Thanks to the Encore Program for helping my dream of painting come true and enriching my life. It is never too late to begin a new chapter.”
 
For more information about the Encore Learning program at PDCCC, log onto www.pdc.edu/workforce-development/encore-learning/ or call 757-569-6062.

Charlotte-at-easelCharlotte McKeller makes a few changes to the painting she created on the morning of being photographed.

Passion-FlowMcKeller produced an abstract painting titled, “Passion Flow,” in her new home studio.

landscapes“Mountain Reflections,” from left, and “Waterfall in the Woods,” were the first two paintings McKeller created on her own in her art studio.

bluescapeThis acrylic piece is titled, “Freezing Lake.”

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