Several staff members were recognized during an awards ceremony on June 14 for their many years of service and contributions to The University of Virginia’s College at Wise.
Brenda Crabtree was honored for 35 years of service.
Mary Calhoun, Ken Hale, Tammy Jessee, Laura Pritchard and Ronald Shortt received 25 years of service awards.
Kimberly Belcher was recognized for 20 years of service.
Glenda Boyd, Janice Davis, Jason Houston, Tessa Lovern, Francene Meade and Charles Miller were honored for 15 years of service.
Matthew Kiser, Kristi McKinney, Holly Meade, J. Adam Moore, Sarah Parsons, Rick Ratley, Deborah Vanover, Heather Wilson, Grant Baker, John Carter, Joseph Meade, Kristin Pottenger and Jeremy Price were recognized for ten years of service.
Beth Allison, Ronald Baker, Karen Bitter, Tim Hall, Hannah Hietala, Rebecca Joyce, Dana Kelley, Kerri Kiser, Kristin Kunzman, Nancy Pilkenton, Lori Price, Heather Rhoades, Deborah Solce, Sarah Smith-Carlson, Kevin Yates, Carl Brickey, Darrell-Dingus Ely, Mary Ann Keith and Blake Mellinger received a five-year service award.
Leonard W. Sandridge Outstanding Contribution Award nominees, Megan Dennehy and Heather Wilson were recognized along with winner, John Carter.
Carter received the award earlier this year. It is the highest honor for staff at the University and the College at Wise.
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WISE - - The Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association announced that UVa-Wise Head Coach Meghan Dennehy has been named to the organization's board of directors. Dennehy will begin her term as one of three NCAA Division II representatives on July 1.
The University of Virginia’s College at Wise will receive $3.5 million from the University of Virginia to increase enrollment in targeted programs at the College and to create a robust culture of entrepreneurship and innovation in the region.
The Wise Innovation Ecosystem received the funding from the University of Virginia’s Strategic Investment Fund.
“The Strategic Investment Fund is an extraordinary opportunity for the University of Virginia community to dream big and exercise creative license to design and implement high-impact, high-value initiatives,” UVa-Wise Chancellor Donna P. Henry said. “The University of Virginia’s College at Wise is grateful for this award. This is truly a transformative opportunity which will strengthen innovation and entrepreneurship in our curriculum while reinforcing student outcomes and economic development.”
Approval was announced Friday by the Board of Visitors.
“One goal of the Wise Innovation Ecosystem is to diversify the region’s economy by boosting enrollment in the software engineering, computer science and management of information systems programs,” said Shannon Blevins, assistant vice chancellor for economic development and engagement. “Another goal is to give students the skills needed to be relevant and competitive in the emerging economy by creating a center for innovation for students to collaborate and develop entrepreneurial skills through hands-on learning experiences.”
The funding will be received over a five-year period. The majority of the funds will support a Center for Innovation, including the hiring of a professor of entrepreneurship, a professor of cyber-MIS, a center manager and operation costs, including start-up scholarships, student internships, an entrepreneurship boot camp, a cyber-security symposium, an entrepreneurial certificate program and the student innovation center.
“The College at Wise already has top-notch academic programs, including ABET accredited Computer Science and Software Engineering,” said Jacob Somervell, chair of the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science. “These degrees are underutilized resources for the Commonwealth. The programs need more students and this SIF grant will support bringing more students to these degree programs.”
Somervell explained that efforts to increase awareness of the programs and to attract more students would strengthen the mission of the College and provide much needed technology talent to the various technology companies across the Commonwealth and beyond. Increasing enrollment and the number of graduates can have the ripple effect of attracting more technology companies to the region; potentially helping to shift the local economy from the struggling coal industry towards a more sustainable technology sector, he explained.
“I thank the Board of Visitors and the review panel for their foresight and clarity of vision in recognizing the importance these degrees can have for the region and the Commonwealth,” he said. “My hope is that the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science can graduate significantly more majors with technology degrees and help Southwest Virginia become a competitive destination for myriad technology companies.”
The funds would also support a retention program for students in various programs, including a mandatory summer program for entering students, highly monitored “turbo” classes in the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, early intervention for at-risk students and shared courses with the University of Virginia.
“This represents a level of outreach that our department has never engaged in before,” said Frank Frey, chair of the UVa-Wise Business Department. “It is a great opportunity for us to provide more scholarship opportunities and additional educational opportunities for our students. It will also help us grow as a school and help attract more students.”
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WISE - - Officials at The University of Virginia's College at Wise announced that Kendall Rainey, Ph.D. has been appointed to the position of interim director of athletics Friday. Previously, Rainey served as the College's Associate Director of Athletics for Academics and Student-Athlete Success and the school's Senior Woman Administrator. She replaces Danny Sterling who resigned the position earlier this week.
WISE - - Thursday 30 UVa-Wise student-athletes were honored for their academic success by the Mountain East Conference. Thirteen Cavaliers were named to the All-MEC Academic Team which requires the student-athlete to have a grade point average of 3.7 or higher while 17 more student-athletes made the Commissioner's Academic Honor Roll which requires a grade point average of 3.25 or better.
The University of Virginia Astronomy Department is offering a free week long Dark Skies, Bright Kids Astronomy Summer Program at UVa-Wise for rising fourth, fifth and sixth graders in late July.
The astronomy club will give students the opportunity to explore the night sky and travel to other planets with DSBK’s portable planetarium. The youngsters will also learn about constellations, distant solar systems, and get to make their own comets, discover how invisible light is used to solve mysteries of the universe, and more. A Star Party will be held at the end of the week so students may use telescopes to enjoy the starry night sky.
UVA Astrophysicist Kelsey Johnson, associate professor of astronomy and director of Dark Skies, Bright Kids, oversees the camp.
The camp, which will run from July 24 through July 28, is free to students who will be in fourth, fifth or sixth grade in the fall. For more information, contact Huda Aden at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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WISE, Va. – The UVa-Wise volleyball program has announced five additional signees to its 2017 class, welcoming Madelyn Lawrence, Savannah Tuner, Kaitlin Weseloh, Abigail McKinney-Odasso and Cortney Via to the team this fall.
Science, technology, engineering and mathematics are mixing things up with the art of writing at UVa-Wise this week.
Several youngsters are spending the week exploring the wonders of science at UVa-Wise. They are also learning to reflect and write about what they see and experience during the Summer Science Camp.
“Our primary goal is to offer some fun activities to these kids as they learn about the different branches of science,” said Amy Clark, a professor of communication studies at the College. “This is the perfect age because they’re so inquisitive and open to new learning opportunities.”
The science camp, co-sponsored by the Appalachian Writing Project and the Department of Natural Sciences, brings UVa-Wise natural science faculty together with the youngsters for four days of fun and learning.
“We wanted to incorporate writing because that’s something that’s always linked to the humanities but not STEM,” Clark explained. “We want them to know that it’s important to be able to communicate what they’re observing and learning. We plan to include some creative writing, possibly some blogging, and lab reports.”
Professor Margie Tucker, chair of the Department of Natural Sciences, got the idea to offer the summer camp when she thought about the available resources on campus.
“I don’t think we have an agenda except to introduce our kids to some really cool ideas and open their eyes to things they may have never seen before,” Tucker said. “I talked to a bunch of people about it and everyone agreed it was a great idea, and Amy offered to combine it with her creative writing grant so we could do a program.”
The youngsters spent Tuesday dip netting with Professor of Biology Wally Smith in the wetlands, followed by a writing session. Stargazing at the campus observatory with Professor Lucian Undreiu, rocks and fossils with Professor Bob VanGundy, dragonfly chasing with Professor Josephine Rodriquez, fun with physics with Professor Adriana Undreiu and virtual reality with Seth France are among the activities planned for the rest of the week. Writing sessions follow each activity.
WISE, Va. – Junior right-handed pitcher Taylor Brandts picked up her second All-American honorable mention plaudit Tuesday afternoon as Fastpitch News released its 2017 FPN NCAA Division II Pitching and Offensive All-Americans