Here’s a round-up of news briefs from around Southwest and Southside. Send yours for possible inclusion to

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Nursing scholarship established at Patrick & Henry Community College

Living and working in Patrick County for nearly seven decades, Wanda Ayers-Slate made an impact in her community. Working as a registered nurse in Patrick County for 20 years, she touched countless lives. Now, even after her passing, Ayers-Slate continues to impact the lives of Patrick County residents.

With a donation of more than $70,000, the family will establish the Wanda Ayers-Slate Nursing Scholarship. The money, which was donated to the Patrick County Education Foundation, will be used to establish an endowed scholarship fund at the Patrick & Henry Community College Foundation. The fund will provide two $1,000 awards to Patrick County residents pursuing a degree in nursing at Patrick & Henry Community College. The scholarship will be offered for the first time starting this fall and will be distributed annually. 

Students who are interested in applying for this scholarship can do so by completing the application at The application opened April 1 and closes May 31.

P&HCC uses one common scholarship application for all of its foundation scholarships. When students complete this one application, they are automatically considered for any of the Foundation Scholarships they are eligible for.

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Averett students at the vigil. Courtesy of Averett University.

Averett University groups collect relief supplies for Ukraine

Averett University’s International Life Club and the Student Government Association co-hosted a vigil for Ukraine recently to show support for the victims and individuals displaced by the war. Donations for victims were collected on campus and include clothing items, dry goods, feminine products, diapers and more for basic needs.

Everything collected will be sent to Ukraine by Averett’s Center for Community Engagement and Career Competitiveness in partnership with American National Bank and EBI Incorporated. Ukrainian flags lined the walkway in front of Main Hall for the event, and the columns were lit blue and yellow.

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Jamoboree in Wytheville on April 16

Wytheville Community College is sponsoring its free monthly Bluegrass and Old-Time Jamboree, this time featuring Bluestone and the Twin Creeks String Band from 7-9 p.m. April 16. The Jamboree will be held in the William F. Snyder Auditorium on the WCC campus, located at 1000 E. Main St. in Wytheville.

The conventional bluegrass categories of traditional and progressive are of little help in describing the music of Bluestone. Made up of top musicians who have devoted themselves to cultivating a unique group sound rather than displaying their individual talents, the band performs classic bluegrass numbers and contemporary songs. They have been especially noted for their close-harmony singing. The members of the band are Tom Foley bass and vocalist; Ryan Mullins, mandolin and vocalist; Craig Smith, guitar and vocalist; and Kris Rasnake, banjo. Bluestone has opened for bands including III Time Out, Lonesome River Band, Marty Raybon, Ralph Stanley and many others.

The Twin Creeks String Band hails from the southern stretch of the Virginia Blue Ridge, with a sound that is locally rooted and yet unique. Their compelling combination of spirited string band dance numbers with classic song repertoire is well-suited for entertaining crowds throughout the region. The band is consists of Chris Prillaman on the fiddle, Jason Hambrick on vocal and guitar, Jared Boyd on banjo and Stacy Boyd on bass. Twin Creeks String Band embodies the convergence of Southwest Virginia’s musical traditions.

Bluestone will perform from 7-8 p.m. and the Twin Creeks String Band will perform from 8-9 p.m. The doors will be open beginning at 6 p.m. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.

The event is free and open to the public. Donations will be accepted to help defray the travel expenses of the bands.

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Danville Community College holds open house April 21

Danville Community College will be hosting an open house event in the Student Center from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. April 21.

The event will include a one-stop shop, located in the Student Center, that will allow students to come in with no application and leave ready to get their class schedule. There will be staff from admissions, counseling, advising, student success, financial aid and TRiO EOC present to assist students every step of the way. 

The open house event will be held in concert with DCC’s annual student Spring Fling. This will be the first Spring Fling since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Campus tours will be offered every 30 minutes from 9 a.m. through 5:30 p.m. Tours will include visits to exciting lab areas, classrooms, the student center and outdoor pavilion, the library and more.  

For more information about DCC or to apply and enroll, visit and fill out the interest form.

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