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Williamson, WV - Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College recently received a generous donation of $40,000 compliments of Cotiga Development Company as an ongoing commitment to provide scholarships for students in the Tug Valley area. The company is also the sponsor of the Appalachian Leadership Academy, Cotiga Chapter based at the Williamson Campus of Southern.

Cotiga continues to assist students in completing their college education close to home by attending Southern in an effort to grow leaders in southern West Virginia and eastern Kentucky. The Appalachian Leadership Academy will prove to be an integral component to the success of future business and government leaders.

"Cotiga has been a long-time, committed partner to providing Tug Valley area students with the opportunity to continue their education at Southern. This is another chapter in our relationship with Cotiga that will benefit students for years to come," said President Joanne Jaeger Tomblin.

The four fellows who were inducted last fall into the academy recently met with representatives from Cotiga, Southern and the ALA Board of Directors to share stories about their first year experiences and the leadership skills they have acquired as a result of participating in the program. Now in their second year, Shannon Carbello of Delbarton, Kevin Whitt of Varney, Rita White of Delbarton, and Dee Dee Williams of Crum, are helping recruit applicants for this year's academy. Each one said they are becoming more confident and are learning each day what it takes to be a good leader.

"The leadership academy has been a great experience for me and I am becoming more comfortable with becoming a leader," Williams said.

Those who are selected as fellows this year will also receive a full scholarship to pay for tuition, fees and books, according to Pauline Sturgill, director of the Appalachian Leadership Academy at Southern. Sturgill is conducting interest meetings this month at the Williamson Campus. Those selected as Cotiga Chapter Fellows will have the opportunity to develop into skilled citizens and future leaders by focusing on character, leadership and technical excellence, Sturgill said. She hopes to have 10 members this year.

Mingo County's own General Robert H. “Doc” Foglesong established the Appalachian Leadership and Education Foundation in the fall of 2006. Its mission is to recruit and educate young men and women who are academically qualified, exhibit a strong work ethic, and demonstrate leadership qualities, but who would otherwise find college unattainable.

"More than anything else, the way you run your life defines your character and for leaders, good character is paramount," said Foglesong.

Last year Southern joined Marshall, Shepherd, Concord, Mississippi State and West Virginia Parkersburg Community College as ALEF partners. Establishing a student leadership chapter at the Williamson Campus in partnership with Cotiga Development continues to be a perfect match.

Williamson Campus representatives Rita Roberson, Mary Hamilton, Dr. Cindy McCoy, Karen Preece and Stella Estepp will continue to serve as student mentors of the leadership academy.

Some of the benefits of being selected for the leadership academy are:

* College counseling, academic support, and retention services.
* Leadership through Service Program.
* Internships and career development workshops.
* Parent support services and advisory groups.
* Grants and scholarships to financially challenged young men and women.
* Leadership curriculum under the direction of General Foglesong.

For more information about applying for the leadership academy at Southern, contact Sturgill at 304-896-7371 or email her at

Pictured are l-r, Appalachian Leadership Academy Director Pauline Sturgill, Cotiga Development Company Administrative Assistant Charlotte Curry, ALA Fellows Dee Dee Williams, Kevin Whitt, Shannon Carbello, and Rita White, Southern's President Joanne Jaeger Tomblin and ALA Board Member Dee Kapourales.

First Lady Visits With AmeriCorps Members

APPALREAD's 2008-2009 class of AmeriCorps members met First Lady Gayle Manchin on the Logan Campus, August 6, 2008. The AmeriCorps members will be serving as reading coaches in elementary schools across Boone, Logan, and Mingo Counties during the coming school year. APPALREAD is a program of Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College and is funded in part by the West Virginia Commission for National and Community Service and The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation.

Pictured left to right, front row: Sarah Howell, and Jessica Cooper. Second row, Mary Spaulding, Whitney Kessler, Pauline Sturgill (APPALREAD's Director), First Lady Gayle Manchin, Susan Trammell, Sandra Cox, Kayla New, Angela Dotson (APPALREAD Coordinator), and Tensia Spence. Third row: Anita Purdue, Donna Blankenship, Tiffany Lowe, Joyce Hill, Tonia Fitchpatrick, Michelle Steele, Samantha Wilson, and Carolyn Lucas.

West Virginia State Board of Education Visits Southern

President Joanne Jaeger Tomblin hosted members of the West Virginia State Board of Education during a visit to Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College on August 6th. The group, including First Lady Gayle Manchin, toured the new 55,000 square foot Allied Health and Technology Center and the Logan campus. They also visited the Academy for Mine Training and Energy Technologies where they experienced a rock truck simulator.

Pictured are l-r, State Superintendent of Schools Dr. Steven L. Paine, President Tomblin, Mrs. Manchin, Superintendent of Lincoln County Schools David Roach and State Assistant Superintendent of Technical and Adult Education Services Dr. Stanley Hopkins. Superintendent of Logan County Schools Wilma Zigmond and college administrators joined the group for a discussion about Southern's new academic programs and workforce training.

CEDAR of Southern West Virginia, Inc. held its annual scholarship banquet on May 27th at the Logan Country Club. Opening remarks were given by CEDAR President Georgene Robertson.

Scholarships were presented by Joanne Jaeger Tomblin, president of Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College and Foundation board member George Kostas

to the following recipients: Chelsea Anderson of Van High School; Barbara Blankenship, Iaeger High School; Courtney Blankenship, Gilbert High School; Jordan Browning, Tug Valley High School; Cody Elswick, Sherman High School; Kandice Hatfield, Gilbert High School; Brittany Miller, Matewan High School; Courtney Newsome, Tug Valley High School, Pete Spano, Logan High School and Crystal Toppings, Truthway Christian Academy. These scholarships were created through the partnership of CEDAR and Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College.

Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College recently named Teri M. Wells as the 2008 Employee of the Year. She was nominated for her excellence in customer service. Teri has been employed at Southern for over 10 years and currently serves as Student Records Assistant at the district office. She was presented with a lovely trophy along with a check for $200, courtesy of the college's foundation.

Harmony Week Candlelight Vigil

Lift every voice and sing....A candlelight vigil was held on Monday, February 25th at the Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in conjunction with Harmony Week 2008 being celebrated at Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College in partnership with the local NAACP. Ilene Evans, who portrayed Harriet Tubman, joined Reverend Gerald Dotson in a verse of "Lift Every Voice and Sing". Rev. Dotson, pastor of the Logan Street Baptist Church in Williamson, was the guest speaker. The youth group Genesis, from the Ebenezer Baptist Church, provided the musical entertainment. Father George Kostas said it was a wonderful evening of fellowship and he hoped for a day when all would come together and worship.

Shell Scholarship Family

The Southern West Virginia Community College Foundation is pleased to announce the establishment of The Shell Family Scholarship, by native Logan Countian and Huntington resident, Robert Shell, Jr., his wife Lena, mother Doris and other Shell Family members. The scholarship is being established through a major contribution of bank stock valued at more than $100,000, however, the family plans to provide additional contributions to the fund in future years. The scholarship will provide financial assistance to students attending Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College.

Shell, a successful international businessman is well known for his philanthropy and support of young people and their education. He and his family realize the financial hardship students have in attaining a college education. The Shell Family Scholarship is an opportunity for the Shell family to provide continuing support to students attending Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College and serve as a stepping stone for those who wish to pursue an advanced degree at Marshall University or other four-year colleges or universities.

Robert Shell is the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions. In 1999, he was elected to the Marshall University Business Hall of Fame. In 2007 he was elected to the West Virginia University Business Hall of Fame and honored by the Education Alliance at their annual dinner in Charleston.

George Kostas, President of the Southern West Virginia Community College Foundation stated, “We are so appreciative of the Shell family in providing this scholarship. This family certainly has not forgotten their roots and demonstrates a commitment to the citizens of the area.

New Kevin Ball Memorial Scholarship

The Logan County Deputy Association has established the Kevin Ball Memorial Scholarship at Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College. The scholarship funds will be administered through the Southern West Virginia Community College Foundation.

Graduates of Man, Chapmanville and Logan high schools will be eligible for the scholarship in May 2008. Scholarship applications will be distributed to the area high schools by Logan County deputies.

Pictured l-r, are deputies Dennis Brown, Brian Cobb, Sonya Porter, Jason Mathis, Southern's President Joanne Jaeger Tomblin, Burley Ferrell, Nick Booth, Joey Sheppard, and Southern's Vice President of Development Ronald E. Lemon.

General Robert "Doc" Foglesong returned home to Mingo County on December 17 to participate in a ceremony honoring the first members of the Appalachian Leadership Academy, Cotiga Chapter which has been established at Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College. To become a true leader, Foglesong stressed the importance of integrity and courage.

The five Williamson Campus students inducted into the leadership academy were Shannon Carbello of Delbarton, WV; Kevin Whitt of Varney, WV; Rita White of Delbarton, WV; Tiffany Razer of Williamson, WV; and Dee Dee Williams of Crum, WV. As Cotiga Chapter fellows, they will receive a full scholarship which will pay for tuition, fees and books, according to Pauline Sturgill, director of the Appalachian Leadership Academy at Southern.

President Joanne Jaeger Tomblin thanked Cotiga Development Company for being a committed partner in making this program possible. Cotiga sponsors numerous scholarships which are awarded to Tug Valley area students attending Southern.

Dr. Cindy McCoy and Karen Preece will serve as co-chairs of the Appalachian Leadership Academy, Cotiga Chapter. They will also serve as student mentors along with Rita Roberson, Mary Hamilton and Beth Deaton.

Dee Dee Williams of Crum, WV is a life long volunteer, having been involved in 4-H and FFA as a child growing up in California. Williams currently serves as the Williamson Campus Student Government Association President and Vice President of the Head Start Policy Council in Wayne County. Williams plans to complete her Associate Degree in nursing at Southern and then become an inspirational speaker for teens and young adults who drop out of school. Her goal through the Appalachian Leadership Academy is to learn the characteristics and traits needed to be a successful leader.

Shannon Lillian Carballo of Delbarton, WV has a passion for health care administration, having managed labs and emergency room admissions in North Carolina, before making West Virginia her home. Her goal is to graduate from Southern’s nursing program and become a faculty member, sharing with others her passion for the nursing profession. Carballo believes that the Appalachian Leadership Academy will help her spread her wings, allowing her to grow both personally and professionally.

Rita Faye White of Delbarton, WV is a freshman student at Southern, recently graduating from Burch High School with honors. She is a business administration major with plans to open her own mortuary business in Delbarton. White’s academic career has been centered around the different service programs that Burch High School offered and her intent through Southern’s Appalachian Leadership Academy is to gain valuable knowledge that will help her become a better leader and person now and in the future.

Kevin Michael Whitt of Varney, WV is an active member of his church and community, having first felt the call to service while volunteering in the Eagles Nest Club at Burch High School. He is working to earn a degree in elementary education with the intent of staying in Mingo County, becoming a teacher and positive role model for young children. Whitt believes that the Appalachian Leadership Academy will help him strengthen his leadership abilities, providing him with more discipline, and opening new doors that will help him to better meet the needs of those he is called to serve.