Latest Southern News

Employees of Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College have created a scholarship to honor retiring President Joanne Jaeger Tomblin. The scholarship administered through the Southern West Virginia Community College Foundation is part of the 2020 Vision Major Gifts Campaign. Tomblin, the driving force behind the fundraising effort,  created the campaign to sustain the college and provide more opportunities to students. The fundraising campaign has raised $16.4 million through community donations, Foundations, and grants. The Southern Foundation has distributed $2.2 million in scholarships since 2007and provided over $700,000 to Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College in aid and educational support. ““The major gifts campaign is her legacy to this institution and the employees felt it was appropriate to honor her in this way,” said Emma Baisden, Executive Assistant to the President and Board of Governors. For more information on the 2020 Vision Major Gifts Campaign visit our website at .

President Joanne Jaeger Tomblin was a recent guest on WOWK-TV Decision Makers weekly news program. President Tomblin discussed the importance of community colleges in the future economy. View the episode below.

WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

The Southern West Virginia Community College Foundation, Inc. announces the availability of the Appalachian Regional Commission Scholarship for displaced coal miners and their immediate family members.

This is a “needs‐based” scholarship for students who have been adversely impacted by the downturn of the coal industry in the West Virginia counties of Boone, Lincoln, Logan, McDowell, Mingo, and Wyoming. The students must demonstrate a financial need for tuition, textbooks, supplies, or other miscellaneous costs. The amount of the scholarship award will vary depending on the financial need. 

The application deadline is July 1, 2015 for the Fall semester. You may download the application online at or visit the Development Office on the Logan Campus. For more information contact or 304.896.7407.


He’s walked the walk and can talk the talk. Ricky Ellis, Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College’s new Veteran Support Program Coordinator, spent 7 years in the Navy and continued his education using the Montgomery GI Bill. “I understand what issues a veteran battles on a daily basis,” said Ellis. “I know the procedures of what veterans are experiencing in the higher educational system.” The Veteran’s Support Program at Southern provides assistance to students who have served in the United State Armed Forces. Ellis can provide assistance to these veterans, their dependents, and active military regarding VA and federal and state education benefits, college program advising, placement, retention, and success, and actively work with veteran organizations throughout the college’s service area in support of educational mission. Ultimately, Ellis would like to provide a “One Stop Shop” for veteran students. “Instead of having to go here do this and back here to do that, a veteran will be able to complete it all in my office. Take the running and confusion out of the application process and registration. I want to be able to look back on the day and realize I have assisted someone that has given so much for all of us.” Ellis states that he has accrued a vast knowledge and has gained experience through internships with different clubs at Southern. He has interned with the Program of Adults Services and 4 months with the Director of Disability Services. For the last year, he has worked as a Peer Mentor, assisting students in the Technical programs. “Being granted the opportunity to assist these brave men and women in their pursuit of education, my overall goal is to attempt to make the process a little easier for them while doing so. Making the administration side of the college experience less difficult to maneuver … and assisting them in whichever way I can.”
Stella Estepp is being recognized as the Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College, May Employee of the Month. Estepp is a graduate of Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College where she earned an AS in General Business and an AAS in Business Accounting. She also holds a Regent’s Bachelor of Arts with a minor in Accounting from Marshall University. She joined the staff of Southern in August 1998 and worked in the JTPA program until 2000. She began working in financial aid in January 2001 where she is currently a Program Assistant ll. Estepp describes her job as being responsible for counseling and advising students in the application process for all federal, state, institutional aid, scholarships, and loan programs. She also processes applications to administer the awarding and funding of financial aid to eligible students. One of the elements Estepp says she has enjoyed most about her job is meeting and getting to know the students. “I’m very student oriented. I am committed to Southern, and the students. It has helped me establish a great rapport with them. They know me by name, and are comfortable with me. They know I will go the “extra mile” for them, and as a student, this helps connect them to the institution.” Estepp adds that at times it’s a great challenge to overcome the financial barriers for students to attend. “My greatest accomplishment is helping students reach their financial goals so they can have a more positive college experience without having the worry of how to pay for their education.” Estepp is involved with several committees on campus. She serves as a board member on Appalachian Leadership Academy, is a member of the Marketing and Recruitment Task Force Committee and serves on Southern Samaritans Committee. Estepp is an animal advocate and rescuer. “I rescue and foster animals, and help to place them in loving forever homes.” In her spare time she enjoys being outdoors – camping & gardening, spending time her grandchildren and preserving her own food. In her quiet time she likes to read and sew. Estepp and her husband Larry have two grown children and six grandchildren. She says she is honored to receive this award.
There's no better place to begin in the college search process than close to home. Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College invites anyone interested in continuing their education or finding an exciting career to join us for a Spring Open House , Saturday, May 2, 2015 on the Wyoming/McDowell Campus. Prospective students will have the opportunity to tour the campus and talk with Southern representatives about financial aid, veteran’s affairs, adult services, academic advising and other services. The campus is located at 128 College Drive in Saulsville. The event will be held from 10am until noon. Refreshments will be served. For more information contact David Lord at 304-294-2010 or visit the website at
Logan, WV- Marshall University Interim President Gary G. White will address the 2015 graduating class of Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College on May 16, 2015. White, a Logan County native and Marshall graduate is a former member and past chairman of the Marshall University Board of Governors, former member and vice president of the West Virginia Board of Education, and former member of the University of Pikeville Board of Trustees. He also served on the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission from 2013 until his appointment as interim president. He is on the boards of directors of United Bankshares Inc., ARC Logistics Partners LP, Cabell Huntington Hospital, the Marshall University Foundation, the West Virginia Coal Association and the Larry Joe Harless Community Center Foundation Inc. He also serves on the board of advisors of West Virginia Media Holdings LLC. White has been executive vice president of Blackhawk Mining LLC since October. He was president and chief executive officer of International Industries Inc. for a large part of his career—from 1992- 2007. He also previously served as president and chief operating officer of International Resource Partners LP, a subsidiary of James River Coal Company, president and chief executive officer of the West Virginia Coal Association, manager of underground mining at Amherst Coal Company and corporate training coordinator at Island Creek Coal Company. He is a former member of the Community Trust Bancorp Inc. Board of Directors and the RAG American Coal Inc. Board of Directors. He served as director of transition for Governor Cecil Underwood. White received the 2004 Distinguished Service to the Community Award from the Marshall University Alumni Association, the 2006 Distinguished Achievement Award from the West Virginia Education Alliance, the 2003 City of Hope “Spirit of Life Award” and is a member of the Business Hall of Fame at Marshall. In 2006 and again in 2008, he was named one of the “Fifty Most Influential Individuals in West Virginia” by West Virginia Executive magazine. Commencement Exercises will take place beginning at 10:00 a.m. at the Coalfield Jamboree Theater in downtown Logan. The public is invited to attend the ceremony. Please visit for additional information.
Southern Harmony 365 will present a free concert at the Savas Kostas Theater on the Logan Campus of Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College on Wednesday, April 22 featuring award-winning songwriter, speaker and writer, David LaMotte. LaMotte has performed over 2500 concerts and released eleven full-length CDs of primarily original music, touring in forty-eight of the fifty states, as well as extensively in Europe, Australia and New Zealand. The Boston Globe writes that his music “pushes the envelope with challenging lyrics and unusual tunings, but he also pays homage to folk tradition,” while BBC Radio Belfast lauds his “charm, stories, humour, insightful songs, sweet voice and dazzling guitar ability.” LaMotte suspended his eighteen-year music career at its peak in 2008 to pursue his other passion by accepting a Rotary World Peace Fellowship to study International Relations, Peace and Conflict Resolution at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. As part of that study, he also spent three months in rural Andhra Pradesh, India working with a Gandhian development organization. In 2004, David and his wife Deanna founded PEG Partners, a small non-profit organization that supports schools and libraries in Guatemala. He continues to volunteer as the Director for PEG. He is also a consultant on Peace and Justice at the North Carolina Council of Churches. David has published two illustrated children’s books. The first based on his award-winning children’s song SS Bathtub and the second, White Flour, which tells the true story of a creative and whimsical response to a Ku Klux Klan march in Knoxville, Tennessee by a group called the Coup Clutz Clowns. His next book, a non-fiction title for adults, is tentatively titled Worldchanging 101: Challenging the Myth of Powerlessness. LaMotte serves as Clerk (Chair) of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) Nobel Peace Prize Nomination Task Group, working with twelve people on three continents to determine the AFSC’s nomination each year. AFSC is qualified to make an annual nomination as a laureate of the Nobel Peace Prize, having accepted the prize in 1947 on behalf of Quakers everywhere. Touring full-time for over two decades, LaMotte developed a large and loyal following around the world. His music has been honored with numerous awards and grants as well as artist sponsorships from Taylor Guitars and John Pearse Strings. David’s music has been featured on dozens of artist compilations. Notably, his song Dark and Deep was included on Songs Inspired By Literature, Chapter One, a benefit CD to raise money for adult literacy. Other artists on that CD include Suzanne Vega, Aimee Mann and Bruce Springsteen. Several independent films feature David’s music, and it has been heard on the Today Show and the Showtime television series This American Life. LaMotte is a public speaker and workshop leader, offering Worldchanging 101 workshops around the world for more than a decade. As a result of his work with schools in Guatemala, he was nominated as a “Hero of Humanity” in the Heifer Project’s magazine World Ark and named a “Madison World Changer” by his undergraduate alma mater, James Madison University. David LaMotte makes his home in Black Mountain, North Carolina, with his wife Deanna and son Mason. He is currently touring extensively, speaking and performing, and turning his attention toward a new recording project. The concert will begin at 6pm and is free and open to the public.
DegreeWorks a web-based tool to help students and advisors monitor a student's progress toward degree completion will be available to Southern students beginning April 6th. DegreeWorks combines Southern’s degree requirements and a student’s completed coursework into an easy-to-read worksheet that helps students see how completed courses count toward degree requirements, and helping students see what courses and requirements still need to be completed. Along with the DegreeWorks worksheet, students may also take advantage of two other areas of DegreeWorks. One is the “What If” audit; the other is the GPA calculators. The What If audit, which is similar to the worksheet in format, gives students the opportunity to explore other degree options based on the courses the student has completed. The GPA calculators may help students and advisors plan for GPA requirements with three settings: graduation calculator, term calculator, and advice calculator. All currently-enrolled students who first attended Southern after Fall 2011 and who are using the 2010-2011 or a later catalog to fulfill their degree requirements can use DegreeWorks to check their progress toward degree completion.