Health Technologies | Humanities | Math | Natural Science | Social Science

Welcome to SWCC and the Health Technologies, Humanities, Mathematics, Natural Science and Social Science division.

Our goal is to make your time here a great experience. Our mission is found below.
Health Technologies, Humanities, Mathematics, Natural Science and Social Science, an academic division of Southwest Virginia Community College, provides high quality workforce and transfer education and cultural opportunities for students enrolled in courses offered through the division or for community members who attend events sponsored by the division.
As SWCC students:
You are the reason we are here.
You are our top priority.
You are the purpose of our work.
You are the most important person on campus.

The SWCC Health Technologies, Humanities, Mathematics, Natural Science and Social Science Division faculty, staff and I are committed to your success.

If you have an issue, need advising or just want to ask a question come see us. Again, please ask. The only “bad“ question is the one that you have not asked. Our doors are always open during operating hours and after hours you can contact us through email.
I look forward to hearing from you. Cathy Smith-Cox, Dean

See the College Catalog for a complete listing of available programs 

Department Updates & Program Notes

Pre-requisites and requirements for the RN program have changed for 2018.

Applications to the RN program are due between September and February 15 of each academic year. Applications will not be accepted until the applicant has completed the TEAS test. Only applicants who receive the national percentile score required on the TEAS test may turn in the RN application.

Register for the TEAS test at . Choose Richlands Virginia for testing delivered at Southwest.


The Science & Math department’s website provides core information for students interested in a science or math major or in a pre-professional program such as pre-pharmacy, pre-med and others.

SWCC’s Virtual Cadaver Lab provides training opportunities normally available at only a handful of large universities. SWCC’s lab is one of only two currently in the Commonwealth. Learn more…

Health Technology

The Occupational Therapy, Radiography, LPN and Registered Nursing programs require separate applications in addition to the SWCC Application for Admissions.

Radiography Program applications are due in Admissions by January 15 for fall admission. OTA, Registered Nursing & Practical Nursing Applications are accepted until February 15 for fall admission.

Required application materials include:
-completed application forms (for applicants who have not been previously enrolled at SWCC);
-high school transcript;
-transcript of any previous college work;
-GED results, if applicable;
-copy of LPN license, if applicable; and
-Virginia Placement Test (ASSET or COMPASS). Scores are valid for two years.

radiography pinning

Pictured are the 2017 graduating students from the Cooperative Radiography Program of Southwest Virginia Community College, Virginia Highlands Community College, and the Mountain Empire Community College campuses: Front row (left to right): Aisilinn Nelson, Matthew Woods, Krisann Hart, Mary Woodyard, Andrea Jessee, and Brittany Rice. Second row (left to right): Sarah Oden, Corey Jones, Jessica Compton, Mckenzie Denton, Dwayne Hearl, Jordan Smith, Suzanne Rowe, Kadie Jackson, and Katlyn Gollaway.

Nursing Program

VATNPVATNPThe nursing program accepts new students each fall semester. Applications must be submitted by February 15th of each year.
Selection of students into the program is determined by criteria that includes GPA, completion of general education courses, LPN license, being on the previous year’s alternate list, and PSB Exam scores for academic aptitude and natural science aptitude.
See VATNP website for more information

Nursing School Aptitude Examination (RN) (TEAS)

Candidates for the Nursing program must complete the TEAS Test prior to submitting the Nursing Program Application. Register for the TEAS test at . Choose Richlands Virginia for testing delivered at Southwest.

SWPP Patch 6-09Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Technology

Students applying to MECC, VHCC or SWCC should complete the following:

1. Paramedic Program Application Cover Letter– read this important information

2. Apply to College at
Apply to either MECC – Big Stone Gap, VHCC – Abingdon, or SWCC – Richlands. Students who will attend class at either Wytheville or Galax must apply to SWCC- Richlands. If you have trouble, call the college’s admissions office at the number below.

3. Apply to the program.
Complete the Paramedic Program Application.

4. Apply for EMS tuition assistance:
Download and complete the Tuition Assistance Application Attach to an email to or fax to 276-964-7531. Note: the applicant MUST apply for college financial aid before they can be eligible for this assistance.

5. Financial Aid applications are in some ways specific to each college. Apply to one of the following:

Southwest Virginia Community College     For assistance call: 276-964-2555 Apply for SWCC Financial Aid SWCC code: 007260 for FAFSA (Federal) Aid application.

Virginia Highlands Community College     For assistance call: 276-739-2400 Apply for VHCC Financial Aid  VHCC code: 007099 for FAFSA (Federal) Aid application.

Mountain Empire Community College       For assistance call: 276-523-2400 Apply for MECC Financial Aid MECC Code: 009629 for FAFSA (Federal) Aid application.

Occupational Therapy Assistant Program

The Occupational Therapy Assistant program is a 2-year associate of applied science degree program designed to prepare selected students to qualify as contributing members of the health care team who will care for patients under the supervision of a Registered Occupational Therapist. The goals of the occupational therapy team are to develop, restore, or maintain adaptive skills in individuals whose abilities to cope with daily living are threatened or impaired by disease, injury, developmental disability, or social disadvantage.

ota logoOTA Student Handbook

OTA Program Page

OTA Application

OTA Job Shadowing Form

Program Statistics – The total number of graduates from the Southwest Virginia Community College Occupational Therapy Assistant program during the 3-year period of 2015-2017 was 90, with an overall graduation rate of 83%. For NBCOT’s annual board exam pass rates of OTA and OT graduates, please see:

Radiography Program

Radiography Program Handbook (Rev 02/18) ;  Program Requirements Link | RAD Student Shadowing Form 2017

Radiography is a two-year program, six semesters,  with practical experience in a radiology department to complete requirements for ARRT certification.
The programs’ mission is to prepare and graduate selected students to qualify as contributing members of the allied health team, who will care for patients under the supervision of qualified physicians. The Program combines adequate didactic instruction with clinical experience to create a sound foundation for a professional career. Radiography Program Page


The annual SWCC Mathematics Contest holds competition with three divisions, representing 11 area high schools, competing in five subject areas: algebra I, algebra II, algebra III,  geometry, and trigonometry and calculus.  Awards are given for the top three students in each of the subject areas and their photo listings are published on SWCC’s Facebook each year.

Email Professor Fiess at for copies of the practice tests for the Math Contest.

Natural Sciences

Science & Math department website

The Southwest Virginia Biodiversity database website. is a work in progress by the SWCC Natural Sciences department.

Human Services & Social Sciences

career switcher

EducateVA is Virginia’s Community College’s Teacher Prep Program.

Become a Teacher! 
Contact Jereial Fletcher, 276.964.7224 for more information or visit the EducateVA website.