Latest Southern News

Karan Grimes

I would like to nominate Karan Grimes. She recently assumed the position of Nursing Coordinator which is demanding and stressful to say the least. Every big or little thing related the nursing program now goes across her desk. Karan works diligently to see these demands met while at work and I know that she has to take work home to see it these tasks complete. I personally know how demanding the coordinator's position is and know that she is doing an excellent job in her transition to being a full time coordinator, yet still have teaching (faculty) responsibilities. Therefore, I feel that it is only fitting that she be recognized for a job well done. Vernon

Logan, West Virginia - On October 22, 2011 the Washington Monthly released the ranking of America's Best Community Colleges. Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College ranked 14th among the top 50 colleges. The rankings are based on two sources of information including the Community College Survey of Student Engagement (CCSSE) and graduation rates published by the U.S. Department of Education.

The CCSSE survey is managed by a nonprofit organization, housed at the University of Texas at Austin. The survey is given to a presentative sample of students at community colleges who voluntarily choose to participate. Since 1968, CCSSE has administered the survey to 68 percent of all community colleges in America and the results are published on the organization's website at Since most community colleges do not administer the survey every year, the results are combined from the three most recent available years. MOre than 60 percent or 650 institutions were included in the rankings from which the top 50 are published.

Eighty-five percent of each college's ranking is based on it's CCSSE benchmark score and the remaining 15 percent of each college's ranking is based on graduation rates submitted by each college to the U.S. Department of Education.

Categories included in the rankings were: Active and Collaborative Learning, Student Effort, Academic Challenge, Student-Faculty Interaction, Support for Learning and graduation rate.

Southern's President Joanne Jaeger Tomblin stated, "All of us at Southern work hard to help our students succeed. This ranking is a testament to our faculty and staff and the College's support of student learning. As an institution we are emphasizing college completion and obviously we are doing something right by our nation ranking. We are honored by the news.

Vernon Elkins

I would like to nominate Vernon Elkins for faculty of the month for October. Vernon's dedication to the success of the Medical Laboratory Technology program here at Southern is evident in all he does. He spends countless hours working to improve the curriculum in order to remain current with the ever changing field of laboratory science. I am proud to say that the graduating class of 2011 has achieved 100% passage rates on the certification exam and this is a direct result of Vernon's hard work and preparation of the students.  He genuinely cares about the students and their success. I feel he is deserving of the honor of faculty of the month.

- Shirley Spriggs

I nominate Larry D'Angelo for faculty of the month. During this trying time for us on the Boone Campus, Larry has never missed a beat and his enthusiasm for teaching has never waned. I marvel at the academic strides his students make in one semester, all the while hearing those same students rave about how much fun and interesting his classes are. Not only is he a wonderful instructor, but he is also a top notch adviser who takes as much time needed to work with a student on his or her career plan, no matter what path the student has chosen. Larry is also the chair of the Writing/Scoring committee and serves on the Faculty Senate.

I think Larry D'Angelo is well deserving of this honor; I hope his hard work can be duly rewarded.

Susan Baldwin

Gordon Hensley

Gordon Hensley one of the best faculty in teaching (as stated by many of his students), in helping students (per student remarks) and his well organized method of teaching. He is active in college activities (member of future leaders program) and is always willing to help when requested by other faculty members. He is a member of Rotary Club of Williamson where he was the president of the club in 2009-10. He is one the most organized persons. His work is meticulous. He is a great team player and contributes to the misssion of the project assigned. I recommend him for the honor of Faculty of the month.


Vinnie Kudva

Logan, WV - Bestselling author, performer, and motivational speaker, Nicole Johnson will be the featured speaker at the first annual Women's Leadership Institute set for June 10 and 11 at the Chief Logan Conference Center.

The women's networking forum is being hosted by Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College and features a host of leadership developing workshops. Registration has already reached the maximum of 150 participants but a waiting list has been created.

Nicole Johnson is one of the most sought-after creative communicators in America today. Her unique ability to blend humor with compassion as she captures the inner-most feelings of women facing life's daily struggles, has enabled her to create a unique sense of community for women of all ages.

Playing to sold-out crowds of approximately three million women as part of the nations's largest women's conference, Nicole Johnson's "Fresh Brewed Life" message is giving "Hope for the Daily Grind" to thoughtful women who are motivated but often find themselves overextended.

Other conference highlights include Dreama Denver, wife of legendary television personality Bob Denver, best known to millions of fans as lovable Gilligan in the classic sitcom GILLIGAN’S ISLAND. Also speaking will be Dr. Marie Gnage, president of West Virginia University, Parkersburg.

"Southern’s first annual Women’s Leadership Institute promises to be an experience women will be talking about for years to come," said Joanne Jaeger Tomblin, Southern's President and the First Lady of West Virginia.

Southern will honor a woman of outstanding character and integrity who has demonstrated dedication, leadership and commitment to the advancement, promotion and development of the cultural, educational, social, economic or political welfare of our region. The highlight of Friday evening will be the presentation of the 2011 Women of the Year award. Local business women Diane Barnette has been selected to receive this prestigious honor.

Barnette is a Logan County resident and entrepreneur who is dedicated to community service and the betterment of our area. A graduate of Logan High School and Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College with an Associate’s Degree in Business Administration, Barnette has been a professional business woman since 1987. Her keen sense of business and entrepreneurial spirit has led her and her husband Ronald to own and operate three successful businesses in Logan County: Mining Repair Specialists; Fountain Place Cinema 8; and her newest business, Gatti’s Pizza. Cumulatively, she has more than 80 employees within her businesses.

The first annual Women’s Leadership Institute is a partnership between leaders representing business, social services, K-12, higher education and the community who are working together to provide a forum where all women, regardless of age, color, ethnicity, and/or socio-economic status are empowered to use their unique abilities and talents to serve as leaders for the betterment of society.

Cotiga Donation to Southern

A generous donation was recently presented to the Southern West Virginia Community College Foundation by representatives of Cotiga Development Company LP. The check presentation was made during the Cotiga Fellowship Luncheon held at the Williamson Campus on May 20th. The $21,000 donation will be used to support student scholarships. Pictured are l-r, Southern's Vice President for Economic, Workforce and Community Development Allyn Sue Barker; Williamson Campus Director of Operations Rita Roberson; Vice President for Development at Southern Ronald E. Lemon; President of Cotiga Development Richard Snowden; Cotiga's Manager of Resources Edward Curry and Program Specialist Tammy Mays.

"Cotiga has been a long-time supporter of scholarships at Southern. We appreciate their long-term commitment and service to the Tug Valley area. This gift will provide many educational opportunities to Mingo County students. We are very blessed to have them as a community and education partner," Lemon said.

“I would like to nominate Tim Weaver.

Tim has served the college for many years now, and he is a person that students feel comfortable approaching with both academic and personal matters.  He volunteers in his community and often participates in recruiting activities for the college.  During the Spring 2011 semester, he has been very busy travelling between the Wyoming and Boone campuses as well as travelling to South Charleston a few nights a week for his graduate work.  He is truly an asset to Southern and he is well deserving of Faculty of the Month.”

2011 CIC Award

Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College recently received the H.L. Boling Above and Beyond the Call of Duty Award during the 2011 Critical Issues Conference held in Daytona Beach, Florida. The conference was sponsored by the International Society of Mine Safety Professionals. The award recognizes institutions of higher learning for leadership, vision, integrity and trust.

The International Society of Mine Safety Professionals was founded to promote the development of health and safety professionals throughout the international mining community. Saving lives and reducing injuries through better leadership, planning, and practice are primary goals of the Society.

Pictured are l-r, Allyn Sue Barker, H.L. Boling, Southern President Joanne Jaeger Tomblin, Carl Baisden, Ralph Farley, Pete Browning and Kimball Alvey.