Mary Jane Elkins discusses the programs offered at SVCC.

On Thursday the Emporia-Greensville Chamber of Commerce monthly luncheon featured future plans and past successes of the Southside Virginia Community College. 

Mary Jane Elkins spoke in place of Quentin Johnson, president of Southside Virginia Community College. 

Southside Virginia Community College is starting a Utility Solar Panel Installation Technician Certification Program on Oct. 21. The program will train students to install solar panels. 

“I believe that this area is one of the up and coming areas that will be welcoming that industry [solar panels],” Elkins said. 

The Utility Solar Panel Installation Technician Certification Program lasts two weeks. Students get a national construction certification in solar panel installation and are trained in OCEA, CPR and first aid.

The Emporia-Greensville Community College hired a full-time Industrial Technology faculty member and added programs to their curriculum including Welding, Nurse Aide, Lobotomy, Machining and two classes a year in truck driver training. 

Southside Virginia Community College has Zoom technology that allows them to share campus classes to sites off campus. 

An 11 week Powerline Worker Program in Blackstone, Virginia, trains students to be powerline workers. 

“We have graduated 236 students, and I can tell you where 90% of them are working, and they are working in the business,” Elkins said. 

The Emporia-Greensville Southside Virginia Community College offers local high school graduates a year of free classes. 

Elkins said the Community College started October 1969. 

“In 50 years we have developed a campus in Alberta, a campus in Keysville, we operate out of centers in Emporia-Greensville, Blackstone, South Hill, Chase City and South Boston,” Elkins said. “I want to remind everybody that the very first center was the brainchild of Doctor John Cavan and Bobby Wrenn.”

The Emporia-Greensville Southside Virginia Community College took off because of Cavan and Wrenn.