College awards more than diplomas

Published 9:25 pm Thursday, May 26, 2011

By Dr. Patsy Joyner

During Paul D. Camp Community College’s commencement May 13, College President Paul Wm. Conco presented several special awards recognizing significant personal contributions to the College and the community.

PDCCC’s VCCA Showcase winners

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Annually, the Virginia Community Colleges Association sponsors showcases at its state convention that feature outstanding faculty and staff from each of the 23 colleges in the Virginia Community College System.

Faculty criteria for selection include excellence in teaching, significant contributions to education and the community college in general, and professional/personal development. Support staff criteria for selection include significant contributions to education and the community college, plus professional and personal development involvement.

Nominated and selected by their peers at PDCCC, those receiving Faculty Showcase Awards were Renee Felts, associate professor of Information Systems Technology; Ronette Jacobs, instructor of English; Teresa Harrison, M.B.A., financial aid officer; and Ruth Waldo, executive secretary to the vice president of Financial and Administrative Services.

Dr. Conco presented each Showcase recipient with a framed award acknowledging her achievement.

Excellence in Education Award

Dr. Conco also presented the PDCCC annual Excellence in Education Award to Ronette Jacobs. Jacobs was cited by her PDCCC peers for helping to support writing components across the curriculum and for her involvement in various committees, including the Developmental Program Faculty Team and the Planning and Effectiveness Committee.

Her commitment to the college is apparent in her many engaging roles, which include sponsor and founder of the Literary Club, facilitator for the annual Literary Festival, sponsor for the first student trip to the Edgar Allen Poe Museum in Richmond and organizer for the first book clubs for open discussion.

She developed a new course on Creative Writing and served as a planner, chaperone, and participant for the Virginia Community College System’s Student Leadership Conference in the fall and served on the Virginia Community College System’s planning and review teams for the English curriculum.

J. Paul Councill Jr. Community Service Award

President Conco presented the annual J. Paul Councill Jr. Community Service Award to Bobby B. Worrell, who served as Executive Director of the Elms Foundation from 1996 through 2010 after retiring from 44 years in the banking industry.

Described as a “quiet leader,” he has supported many community organizations during his exemplary career. He also served in the past as a director and Chairman for PDCCC’s Local College Board.

On his retirement, a PDCCC scholarship was established by the Elms Foundation to honor Worrell’s role as the former executive director of the Elms Foundation, which administers grants and scholarships for the Camp Foundation, the Ruth Camp Campbell Foundation, and the Camp-Younts Foundation.

Worrell has been an ardent supporter of the college and its mission over many years, and this annual scholarship acknowledges his dedication to the ideals of Paul D. Camp Community College.

Student Ambassadors named

Thirteen students have been selected to serve in a prestigious public relations and student support group at PDCCC for the upcoming year.

Serving as representatives of the college, the Student Ambassadors will assist the President’s Office and the Office of Institutional Advancement with events and functions, such as registration, fundraisers and career fairs. Nine of the new ambassadors served as ushers and helped with the reception at graduation.

Student Ambassadors for 2011-2012 include Victor Williams of Suffolk, Josiah Barrett of Wakefield, Kimberly Holmes of Franklin, Paul Bryant of Courtland, Joshua Stacey of Smithfield, DeShong Woodley of Suffolk, Hannah Barrett of Wakefield, Karen Jenkins of Suffolk, Melissa Reid of Franklin, Pamela Kiger of Smithfield, Emmalia Colendrino of Wakefield, Brenda Anyanwu of Zuni and Zachary Gurganus of Franklin.

Students are nominated by a staff or faculty member, and then selected based on criteria that include: a minimum grade point average of 3.0; demonstration of leadership abilities; communication skills; and positive attitude regarding self, the college and the community.

For information on options available at PDCCC, call 569-6700 or visit