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Virginia Western joins NJCAA in basketball; announces new team name is Rapids

Print Virginia Western Community College has joined the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) for men’s and women’s basketball and will begin playing in the association in 2014-15. In conjunction with the move, the College announces that it has renamed its athletics teams the Virginia Western Rapids.

“Joining the NJCAA will provide our athletes with opportunities to face greater competition and pursue greater achievements. I think it will elevate them in the classroom as well as on the court,” said Dr. Robert H. Sandel, President of Virginia Western. “With this move and the opening of our Student Life Center, we have a buzz of activities and pride around campus, and I am eager to hear everyone cheer on the Rapids.”

The NJCAA is the national governing body for two-year college athletics in the U.S. and is the nation's second-largest national intercollegiate sports organization (to the NCAA). Each year nearly 60,000 student-athletes from 525 member colleges compete in 28 different sports. Visit www.njcaa.org to learn more.

Virginia Western initially will compete in the NJCAA in men’s and women’s basketball, and could add additional sports in the future. The College will be part of Region 10, which covers Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina. There are 34 colleges in Region 10, and nine within Virginia.

The Virginia Western Rapids team name replaces the long-standing Blue Stars name. A new logo incorporates the college colors of blue and gold along with a rushing river that represents the Roanoke Region’s strong outdoors attractions and symbolizes the speed of Virginia Western’s athletes.

Posted on August 21, 2014 in Campus News | Permalink

Virginia Western personalized license plate available for purchase

Through the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, Virginia Western Community College announces that college-branded personalized license plates are now available for purchase. After the first 1,000 qualifying plates, more than half the proceeds from the sale of these plates will go to the Virginia Western Educational Foundation to support student scholarships.

To find out how to order Virginia Western personalized plates and to learn what personalized messages are available, visit: http://www.dmvnow.com/vehicles/#splates/info.asp?idnm=VWCC.

The Virginia Western plates will require an annual fee of $25 with an additional $10 annually for personalization. After the first 1,000 qualifying plates, the Virginia Western Educational Foundation will receive $15 of the $25 annual fee. A portion of that fee may be tax deductible.

Posted on August 13, 2014 in Campus News | Permalink

Virginia Western to serve Franklin County in greater capacity

Virginia Western Community College and Patrick Henry Community College have cooperatively served Franklin County for many years. Through a mutual agreement, Virginia Western will solely serve the county in the future following a brief transitional phase.

Currently, both colleges operate in the Franklin Center with VWCC providing evening classes and PHCC offering daytime classes. VWCC also provides transferring dual enrollment courses at Franklin County High School while PHCC offers career and technical dual enrollment courses.

Beginning in Fall 2014, Virginia Western will assume responsibility for dual enrollment at Franklin County High School. Virginia Western will also assume responsibility for all class programming at the Franklin Center except for Emergency Medical Services (EMS). PHCC will offer EMS classes through 2014-15. PHCC will continue to work with current workforce training clients in Franklin County through 2014-15, transitioning those clients to Virginia Western by Fall 2015.

Franklin County will officially be part of Virginia Western's service area effective July 1, 2015.

Read more about this exciting announcement in The Roanoke Times: http://www.roanoke.com/news/education/higher_education/virginia-western-to-become-franklin-county-s-only-community-college/article_6065298d-7e08-5a5c-b3d5-687d7121ee14.html

Posted on July 31, 2014 in Campus News | Permalink

Virginia Western awarded national grant to support STEM education

ROANOKE —Virginia Western Community College is one of 10 community colleges nationally selected as the latest cohort to participate in an initiative that advances STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) technician education programs. Through the MentorLinks: Advancing Technological Education program, Virginia Western will be paired with experienced community college mentors with extensive experience in planning and implementing advanced technology programs.

For Virginia Western’s project, the Biology Department in the School of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) has been approved to develop a Career Studies Certificate (CSC) in Biotechnology. This certificate will provide students with relevant skills and knowledge in the topics of biotechnology. The program will begin in fall of 2015 and will feature three new courses to provide students with a strong overview of the techniques utilized in biotechnology research as well as core laboratory skills that will relate to a variety of different biotech technician jobs or transfer to a four-year institution.

Mentors from City College of San Francisco will work closely with Virginia Western Biology faculty members Stacie Deaver and Amy White on activities such as curriculum development, industry engagement, faculty development, student recruitment and retention, and experiential learning experiences and development for both faculty and students.

Virginia Western was awarded $20,000 in seed money for the two-year grant period, to support travel to national meetings and events and biotechnology program development. MentorLinks is led by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) with funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF).

“Virginia Western understands the importance of STEM technical education to our local economy and workforce,” said Dr. Robert H. Sandel, President of Virginia Western. “We are very excited that this grant will help us in planning and implementing innovative programs that will benefit the region for years to come.”

AACC has managed the small, yet transformational MentorLinks project since 2002, where assistance to 34 colleges has resulted in the creation of 103 new courses, 15 new associate degrees and 25 new certificates; the development of several industry partnerships and internship sites; STEM program enrollment increases ranging from 14 percent to 350 percent; and the leveraging of more than $3.5 million in additional grant funding. Many of the previous colleges have applied for and received additional NSF grants as a result of their MentorLinks experience.

In addition to Virginia Western, the other selected mentee colleges for the 2014–2016 MentorLinks initiative are Harrisburg Area Community College (Pa.), Irvine Valley College (Ca.), Kapi'olani Community College (HI), Mohave Community College (AZ), Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College (SC), Patrick Henry Community College (Martinsville, Va.), Shoreline Community College (WA), Texas State Technical College Harlingen (TX) and Tri-County Community College (SC).

Posted on July 18, 2014 in Campus News | Permalink
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