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Agreement – Bluefield College and SWCC

New Agreement between Bluefield College and SWCC will Recruit Teachers for Region

agreement bluefield college and swcc

Pictured are officials from Southwest Virginia Community College and Bluefield College signing a Memorandum of Understanding for the Return to Roots Teaching Initiative. This new program will recruit and assist students who would like to teach in the region. Front row, left to right: Mrs. Shellie Brown, director of Teacher Education and assistant professor, Bluefield College, School of Education; Dr. Tommy F. Wright, president of SWCC; Dr. Marshall Flowers, vice president for Academic Affairs and Athletics, Bluefield College. Back row: Dr. Thomas Brewster, dean and associate professor, Bluefield College’s School of Education and Dr. Brian Wright, interim dean, Humanities and Social Sciences Division, SWCC.

Bluefield College and Southwest Virginia Community College (SWCC) are partnering with local school divisions to recruit and assist students who would like to teach in the region.

Students who are admitted to the Return to Roots (RTR) Teaching Initiative will complete  two years of coursework at SWCC, while also taking selected classes at Bluefield College.  Upon graduation from SWCC, the remaining coursework will be taken at Bluefield College.  All four years of the Return to Roots Teaching Initiative will use defined pathways of instruction to ensure that all students are on track for graduation at the end of four years.

“We are pleased to announce this initiative with Bluefield College,” said Dr. Tommy F. Wright, president of SWCC. “Students who are enrolled in the school divisions in our geographic region are encouraged to apply.”  Those school divisions include Tazewell, Buchanan, Russell, and Dickenson counties. He continued, “Eligible students from SWCC will be guaranteed admission to Bluefield College under the Guaranteed Admission Agreement.”

“Bluefield College School of Education and Social Sciences is excited to partner with Southwest Virginia Community College as part of our Back to Roots Initiative.  Our goal is to help future educators train local and stay local by training them at SWCC and Bluefield College and by helping them find employment opportunities within their local school districts,” said Shellie Brown, director of Teacher Education and assistant professor, BC’s  School of Education.

Brown continued, “This partnership will allow students to be enrolled simultaneously at both colleges which will provide discounted tuition and many other incentives including the option to take courses at either college and free admission to BC sporting, music, and theater events.  Teaching is a rewarding profession and we look forward to increasing potential teaching candidates in our local area.”

The Return to Roots Teaching Initiative is particularly interested in students who wish to teach in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) or STEM-related content areas,” said Dr. Robert Brandon, vice president of Academic and Student Services. He continued, “This initiative will encourage more students in our region to go into careers in these highly-sought after fields.”