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Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College and the Robert C. Byrd Institute (RCBI) will host a “Registration Session” for the new Machinist Technology Program at Southern’s Williamson campus on Wednesday, May 23, from 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Interested students will be able to register for classes, tour the facility/campus, meet the instructor, and clarify financial aid questions. Other sessions will be available throughout the summer. Students entering into the program will not register individually online, as with other programs, so if you are interested in enrolling it is vitally important to attend one of the offered sessions.

The Machinist Technology Program gives students hands-on training in manual and computer controlled mills and lathes located at Southern’s Applied Technology Center. Students will earn industry certifications with the option of pursuing an associate degree in applied science through Southern.

The Machinist Technology Program was developed as a partnership between RCBI, Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College, and the McDowell County Career and Technology Center, and was established in direct response to reports from industry, both in West Virginia and nationwide, of a critical shortage of skilled machinists. It is funded through a POWER (Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization) grant with funding from ARC, USEDA, and the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation. The program will be offered at Southern’s campus in Williamson and at the career technical center in Welch.

During Saturday’s 46th Commencement Ceremony, Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College graduated the largest number of veterans and/or veteran dependents – a spouse or child – in the school’s history. During the Spring 2018 semester, 49 veterans and/or their dependents were enrolled at Southern.

“They may not realize they are entitled to certain programs and benefits,” Ricky Ellis, Southern’s Veterans Coordinator, said. “For instance, you may be entitled to medical and vision coverage. If you have earned a Purple Heart, you can attend school – any school – for free. You may also be eligible for assistance programs, such as Transition and Care Management, which helps veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.”

Southern’s Logan Campus houses a Veterans’ Club that meets monthly. There is also a Military Student Success Center, formerly the Veterans’ Lounge, where veterans and/or their family members can relax, study, or have quiet time.

If you are a veteran or a veteran’s dependent, and you are interested in enrolling at Southern, please contact Ricky Ellis at, or give him a call at 304-896-7433.

2018 Savas-Kostas Award Winners

Mount Gay, W.Va. – Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College announced the recipients of its 2018 Savas-Kostas Award for Excellence during the college’s 46th Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 12, 2018. The faculty award winners are Leslie T. Goldie and Brandon Kirk; the staff award winners are Chris Gray and Susan Wolford. Leslie “Les” Goldie is an Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice at Southern, and a West Virginia State Police Sergeant. He restructured Southern’s Criminal Justice program to offer students a fully online Associate Degree, allowing students more flexibility in balancing their studies, personal lives, and work schedules. Goldie also serves on Southern’s Facilities and Safety Committee and Crisis Management Team. He is a Logan County native and a Logan High School graduate. Goldie earned his Master’s Degree in Leadership Studies from Marshall University. He lives in Logan with his wife, Amy.

Brandon Kirk is an Assistant Professor of History at Southern, having earned a Master of Arts in History from Marshall University. Coming from a family of educators, Kirk is a dedicated faculty member, and serves as Coordinator for Board of Governors degree program. He is a published author, having written the book "Blood in West Virginia: Brumfield v. McCoy" in 2014. Kirk, who resides in Harts, W.Va., has been a member of Southern’s faculty since 2010.

One of Southern’s Staff Award winners, Chris Gray, has been on Southern’s team since 1996. Gray serves as the Manager for Business and Auxiliary Services, overseeing Southern’s Business Office, online bookstore, and the snack bar contractors on Southern’s Williamson campus. Gray also serves as Chair of the Classified Staff Council, and the staff representative to the West Virginia Advisory Council of Classified Employees. He is the Chair of the Strategic Planning and Financial Review Committee, and recently coordinated the development of Southern’s Strategic Planning process. Gray is a native of Welch, W.Va., and holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Marshall University. He currently resides in Williamson, W.Va.

Administrative Associate Susan Wolford, the other Staff Award winner, has been a dedicated Southern employee since 1988. Wolford is known for her customer service skills, and her tireless work with department chairs, coordinators, faculty, staff, and students. She has been instrumental in helping make Southern’s Allied Health and Nursing programs among the best in the state and nation. Wolford is a graduate of Logan High School, and holds an Associate Degree in Executive Secretarial Science from Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College. She earned her Regents Bachelor of Arts from Bluefield State College. She resides at Henlawson, W.Va. with her husband, Larry.

The Savas-Kostas Award for Excellence is presented annually to honor two outstanding faculty and two outstanding staff members of Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College who have made significant contributions to the College, community, or to improve education in southern West Virginia. Evidence of qualities befitting a recipient of the Savas-Kostas Award for Excellence includes integrity, professionalism, selflessness, commitment, and cooperation. The outstanding faculty awards were established in 1982 as a permanent endowment by Logan businessman, Nick Savas, for the purpose of recognizing the outstanding contributions of faculty at Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College and the communities we serve. These awards are in the amount of one thousand dollars each. The awards to recognize the outstanding contributions of staff were initiated in 1996 by George and Elizabeth Savas-Kostas. These awards are in the amount of five hundred dollars each.

Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College’s Chawndala Tackett has been inducted into Phi Theta Kappa, the honor society for two-year college students.

Tackett was honored along with 19 other students from across West Virginia during a ceremony at the Governor’s Mansion. The West Virginia Community and Technical College System (CTCS), along with First Lady Cathy Justice, honored each student individually for their academic success, determination, and commitment to their communities.

Tackett will graduate from Southern on Saturday, May 12, with an Associate of Applied Science degree in Health Information Management.

“Chawndala’s induction into Phi Theta Kappa is a tremendous honor, and she represents the best of our students,” Southern President, Dr. Robert Gunter, said. “I couldn’t be more proud of her accomplishments and her recognition.”

Phi Theta Kappa is a premier honor society recognizing the academic achievement of community college students and helping them to grow as both scholars and leaders. The honor society is made up of more than 3.2 million members with nearly 1,300 chapters in nine countries.

The Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College Board of Governors Ad Hoc Nomination Committee will conduct a meeting on Monday, May 14, 2018, beginning at 9:00 a.m. at Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College, Building C, Room 428, 2900 Dempsey Branch Road, Mount Gay, West Virginia. The purpose of this meeting is to bring forth a recommendation for Board officers for the 2018-2019 academic year. This meeting is open to the public.

Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College President, Dr. Robert E. Gunter, has named Rita Roberson as the college’s new Vice President for Institutional Advancement.

“Moving into the position of Vice President for Institutional Advancement will give me the opportunity to work closely with all of the communities in Southern’s service district,” Roberson said. “I look forward to working and partnering with schools, businesses and individuals in our effort to provide an education to all.”

Roberson began her educational career at Southern. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Marshall University, and then her Master of Arts in Counseling, with an emphasis in Community Agency, from Marshall University Graduate College.
She has been employed by Southern since 1985, and has most recently served as the Williamson Campus Director.

“Rita has brought huge levels of innovation to the college and most recently celebrated her latest success as the Southern Champion for our First Annual Southern Telethon hosted at Southern’s Williamson campus this past Sunday,” Dr. Gunter said. “I look forward to having her as part of my Executive Team and working with her to expand the Vision 2020 initiative by seeking additional donors to the College Foundation.”

Mount Gay, W.Va……Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College has named English Instructor Lillie Teeters its Employee of the Year. She received her award on Friday, April 27 during the college’s Governance Day.

Teeters has been an instructor at Southern since January 2016. She has been the creative force behind Southern’s student-published Sticks magazine. When the magazine was begun, the staff consisted of two faculty members, including Teeters, and one student. During this spring semester, the magazine had nine students on staff, with Teeters still at the helm as faculty advisor.

“I am both humbled and honored to have been selected for the Employee of the Year award,” Teeters said. “Sticks has emerged as a powerhouse of labor, love and the Southern community. The response to the magazine, its staff, the authors and artists proves that it has a place here at Southern. My hope is that the magazine gets bigger and better and we fill the Savas Costas auditorium up next year!”

She earned a Bachelor of Arts from Otterbein University in Ohio, and a Master of Fine Arts from Queen’s University in Charlotte, N.C.

“It’s always great to be able to acknowledge someone for their hard work,” Southern President Dr. Robert E. Gunter said. “And Ms. Teeters exemplifies all that this college is about.”

Mount Gay, WV - Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College is pleased to welcome Ms. Stephanie Tyree, Executive Director of the West Virginia Community Development Hub in Charleston, West Virginia, to address the Class of 2018 as its 46th Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 12, 2018.

Tyree joined “the Hub” in 2012 as a community-based policy director, creating a new program to engage West Virginia residents, and became its executive director in 2016.

With more than ten years of experience in policy, community development and community organizing, she has dedicated her career to advancing community-based, systematic solutions for rural, coal-impacted communities in Central Appalachia. Her work has taken her from New York City to Mingo County, WV to Prestonsburg, KY, and many places in between. During that time, her major interest and area of expertise has centered around developing tools to drive community collaboration, leadership engagement, and community-driven change to build strong resilient rural communities.

“My goal has always been to figure out how we can make our communities a better place to live, make it more livable and healthier,” Tyree said. “I think the environment is part of that discussion, but it’s not the only part.”

Tyree earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Pittsburgh (2003) and her law degree from NYU School of Law (2007). She was a 2016 BALLE Fellow, recognized as a “West Virginia Wonder Woman” by West Virginia Living Magazine in 2016, and was a recipient of the State’s Journal’s “Next Generation: 40 Under 40” Award in 2018.

Tyree was born and currently lives in Charleston, West Virginia with her husband and son.

“I wanted to get back to West Virginia,” Tyree said. “I felt like this is where I wanted to put down roots and raise a family. This is the place I feel connected to, and if I was going to make a place better, I wanted it to be my home state.”

The Commencement Ceremony will take place on Saturday, May 12, 2018, beginning at 10:00 a.m. at the Coalfield Jamboree Theater, 208 Main Street, Logan, West Virginia. The public is invited to attend.

West Virginia Governor Jim Justice recently appointed J. Chris Adkins of Danville, Eddie J. Canterbury of Logan, Samuel A. Stewart of Matheny, and Pat J. White of Man, to the Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College Board of Governors. They are filling the expired terms of outgoing board members.

In addition to the new appointments, Governor Justice reappointed Dr. Mason ‘Ed’ White of Logan, and Mr. Kevin Zachary of Chapmanville, to three-year terms ending June 30, 2021.

Mr. Adkins, president of the non-profit, Driven Knights, will serve through June 30, 2019, and succeeds Kevin Hill. Mr. Canterbury was appointed to serve a two-year term ending June 30, 2020, is a mortgage loan officer at Logan, Bank, & Trust, and succeeds Jada Hunter. Mr. Stewart, a Nationwide Associate Agent, will also serve through June 30, 2020, and replaces Glenn Yost. Dr. White, a retired employee of Logan County Schools, replaces Raamie Baker, and will serve a three-year term ending June 30, 2021. Adkins, Canterbury, and White are from the Seventh Senatorial District, and Stewart is from the Ninth Senatorial District.

“We are excited to welcome these new members to the Southern family and to have Dr. White and Mr. Zachary reappointed,” said President Bob Gunter. “We look forward to their collective experience, dedication, insight, and vision as we continue to move our institution forward to meet the needs of the communities we serve. I extend our sincere appreciation to Jada Hunter, Kevin Hill, Raamie Barker, and Glenn Yost for their outstanding service to the board,” President Gunter said. “They have devoted considerable time and energy to serving on the board during my tenure at Southern, and they have been instrumental in the progress made at the College throughout recent years.”

Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College provides accessible, affordable, quality education and training at each of its four campuses in Boone, Logan, Mingo and Wyoming counties, and its Lincoln Location in Hamlin, WV. For further information visit or call 1-866-SWCTC1.