Danville Community College. Photo by Grace Mamon.

Here’s a round-up of education briefs. Want more education news? There’s no full-time reporter west of Richmond covering education K-college. You can help fix that. Help us fund this position.

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Danville Community College to offer EMT training

Danville Community College, in partnership with the Danville Area Training Center, will be offering Emergency Medical Technician training, beginning this month.

The first cohort, which began on October 4, will attend classes twice per week on Tuesday and Thursday evenings, at 6:00 p.m. at the DATC.

In addition to evening class times, students may also be eligible for reduced tuition cost through the Virginia Community College System (VCCS) FastForward program. The total tuition cost for the 6-month, 160-hour training is $1,800, however many students who reside in Virginia will receive a heavily reduced tuition rate.

Individuals who want to know more or who are interested in enrolling in EMT training should call the DATC Director Brian Alderson at 434-792-1871. Once accepted into the course, students will work with DCC staff to register and apply for financial aid.

For more information about DCC or the FastForward program, visit danville.edu.

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FFA and Virginia Produce give money for scholarships at Tech

The Agricultural Technology Program at Virginia Tech has received $18,000 from Virginia FFA and the Virginia Produce Company for student scholarships, the first part of a partnership between the entities. 

The scholarships will be given out as $2,000 individual awards to former Virginia FFA members who enroll in the Agricultural Technology Program in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

The funds were raised from a portion of the sales of Virginia Produce Company’s sweet corn in a variety of grocery store chains throughout Virginia and North Carolina.

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Michael Friedlander (left) and Heywood Fralin. Courtesy of Virginia Tech

Freidlander, Fralin to be honored

Research!America, a national organization that builds awareness and support for health research, will award its Gordon and Llura Gund Leadership Award to Michael Friedlander, the founding executive director of the Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC, and Heywood Fralin, a health care executive who has helped build the biotechnology industry in Virginia.  (Disclosure: Fralin is one of our donors but donors have no say in news decisions; see our policy.)

The award recognizes individuals who have increased the level of advocacy for medical and health research. President Joe Biden and former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg are among the past honorees.

The recognition from Research!America is meaningful for a region that has not been known for biomedical research and technology, according to Friedlander and Fralin.

“Research!America is a powerful voice,” said Friedlander, who is also the vice president for health sciences and technology at Virginia Tech, in a statement. “When they speak out on behalf of the value of medical research for the health of the citizens of the United States, it counts. They are seen as an honest broker by the national leadership, including presidents and Congress. This recognition from such an austere organization is an indication of the growing biomedical research enterprise at Virginia Tech and the value of the partnership with Carilion Clinic.”

“This is an example of the importance of this enterprise for this community,” said Fralin in a statement. In 2018, he finalized a $50 million gift to Virginia Tech to support biomedical research. “What we have accomplished is just the beginning – the best is still ahead of us.”

The Fralin Biomedical Research Institute in Roanoke comprises 39 research teams, employs more than 500 people, and has $155 million in active grants and contracts.

The annual Research!America Advocacy Awards — first hosted in 1996 — will be held in March 2023.