Were you part of the 2019 E&H in the City fun?
Hundreds of alumni made the event another great success…and terrific connections were made among new and old friends. Keep up as we add new photos this week!
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Meet Our Alumni
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1840-adam-taylor" title="Adam Taylor" aria-label="Adam Taylor"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/535,58,1256,781/3315_Adam_Taylor.rev.1519072284.jpg" alt="Adam Taylor" title="Adam Taylor" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/535,58,1256,781/3315_Adam_Taylor.rev.1519072284.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/535,58,1256,781/3315_Adam_Taylor.rev.1519072284.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1280" data-max-h="853"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1840-adam-taylor"><p> Adam Taylor is director of the Catawba Sustainability Center.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Adam Taylor is the manager of the <a href="http://vtrc.vt.edu/Catawba_Sustainability_Center0.html">Catawba Sustainability Center</a>, which is situated on a 377-acre property in the Catawba Valley and is devoted to environmental education activities.</p><p> The center is a collaboration between Outreach and International Affairs, Virginia Cooperative Extension, and Roanoke County.</p><p> Adam previously worked at the West Virginia Farmers Market Association, a statewide organization in West Virginia, where he worked to support and grow West Virginia’s local food economy through project development and management, stakeholder outreach, and policy change.</p><p> Adam also carried out a two-year assignment with the Peace Corps as a forestry Extension agent in Zambia and a yearlong internship on the 100-plus-acre organic farm owned by Dr. Stephen Hopp, Environmental Studies instructor at Emory & Henry, and author Barbara Kingsolver. The farm is highlighted in the book <strong><em>Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life.</em></strong></p><p> A native of Tazewell, Virginia, Taylor earned his bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from Emory & Henry College in 2008 and a master’s degree in agriculture from Oklahoma State in 2014.</p><p> One of the projects that Taylor oversees at the Catawba Sustainability Center is a wetlands restoration project, which received a $15,000 grant from the Dominion Foundation.</p><p> The center, in collaboration with Virginia Tech and <a href="http://www.wetlandrestorationandtraining.com/">Wetland Restoration and Training</a>, plans to do three things:</p><ul><li>restore at least three wetlands in an effort to enhance a biologically diverse habitat for sensitive and endangered plant and animal species </li><li>improve water quality of Catawba Creek </li><li>train professionals in wetland design and restoration using techniques that can be replicated to restore wetlands in diverse environments. </li></ul></div><a href="/live/profiles/1840-adam-taylor" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2593-hans-hobson" title="Hans Hobson" aria-label="Hans Hobson"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/188,0,827,640/6072_15032937_10210903752006876_1351423552006573066_n.rev.1553104497.jpg" alt="Hans Hobson" title="Hans Hobson" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/188,0,827,640/6072_15032937_10210903752006876_1351423552006573066_n.rev.1553104497.jpg 2x" data-max-w="960" data-max-h="640"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/2593-hans-hobson"><p> Hans Hobson is the Executive Director for the Tennessee State Soccer Association.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Hans Hobson is the Executive Director for the Tennessee State Soccer Association. He is responsible for oversight and management of the not-for-profit organization that governs recreational, competitive (travel), and adult soccer program in the state of Tennessee. The Association is responsible for state sanctioned events such as the competitive State Cup, recreational tournaments, member governance, liability and accident insurance coverage, and risk management oversight and guidance. </p><p> A 1997 grad, Hans was a Physical Education major who played soccer at Emory & Henry for 3 years. </p><p> He has a strong belief in the role that sports can play in a young person’s life. Hans credits much of his success and beliefs to Fred Selfe, Bob Johnson, Dr. Margaret Hutson. Hans recalls a story while at Emory & Henry when he and other soccer players were competing in a relay race. The winners got to leave practice early and avoid further fitness fun. Hans states, “I remember that our soccer coach was not looking and I cut the corner on a cone to catch my team up.” At the same time coach Fred Selfe was walking by with the football team and coach stated, “Hobson you are only cheating yourself.” In that moment he recalls feeling completely moved to go back and finish because he surely did not want to cheat himself and Coach Selfe. </p><p> “I think about these three individuals in my job daily and how they would handle situations. I was blessed to be around people that truly cared not only about our mental development but about our personal growth as well. These 3 people influenced me more than they will ever know. I hope they know just how many people they influence still today as they look down on us from heaven.”</p><p> Hans came to E&H from Martinsville, Virginia, and is a champion for lessons learned in a liberal arts environment. “My college education taught me how to think freely and to interact with those who may have different opinions in a manner that is still respectful and loving. We don’t seem to do this anymore today. It is okay to disagree, but how you treat those who disagree can and often does affect your legacy. That is something that Coach Johnson taught me. He was a great man who focused on the mission, vision, values, and legacy. Know where you are going and how to get there. If you can show others and get them to believe then there is nothing they won’t do for you.”</p><p> Hans and his wife, Erin, and three boys, Landon, Isaac, and Levi, are often found on the soccer field (“Where else, right?!”). They are members of the Church of the City in Franklin, Tennessee, and they enjoy any spare time with family. </p></div><a href="/live/profiles/2593-hans-hobson" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/714-" title="Jarrett Dunning" aria-label="Jarrett Dunning"><img src="/live/image/gid/2/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/53,72,821,840/1910_jarrett.rev.1515554170.jpg" alt="Jarrett Dunning" title="Jarrett Dunning" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/2/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/53,72,821,840/1910_jarrett.rev.1515554170.jpg 2x" data-max-w="960" data-max-h="960"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/714-"><p> Investigation of Power </p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Enticed by the way power is used in our society, Jarrett is determined to expand upon his research in graduate school and to pass on his knowledge to future political theory students. </p><p> With a major in philosophy, politics, and economics (PPE), Jarrett is attending graduate school at the University of Chicago to study Political Science and plans to receive his Ph.D. in political theory with the long-term goal of holding a professorship. During graduate school he plans to expand upon his honors thesis work which critically engages the causes of faction and more specifically, the various uses of power in the ordering, structure, and maintenance of human interaction. Following an intellectual tradition encompassing thinkers as diverse as Locke, Von Mises, Weber, and Foucault, he hopes to explore the power dynamics between the individual and the state and interrogate the corollaries of power as a result of social class, economic status, and the structure of state institutions. This inquiry into the nature of power also extends to the origins of political order, social contract theory and the function of private property in society.</p><p> As far as his hobbies go, Jarrett is a well–established bibliophile. He said, “I am known to stay up late into the night hunting the internet for that one rare or out-of-print edition that I can’t keep off my mind, or travel out of my way to visit obscure, used bookstores in hopes of coming across that next great find.” While attending graduate school, Jarrett also works as a Program Assistant for The Hermon Dunlap Smith Center for the History of Cartography at the Newberry Library. As the world’s largest private research library, working at The Newberry has been an excellent opportunity for the expansion of Jarrett’s career and research interest.</p><div class="row sqs-row" id="yui_3_17_2_1_1500390393817_126"><div class="col sqs-col-5 span-5"><div class="sqs-block quote-block sqs-block-quote" data-block-type="31" id="block-yui_3_17_2_2_1423505275009_6882"><div class="sqs-block-content"/></div></div></div></div><a href="/live/profiles/714-" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2453-callee-blankenbeckler" title="Callee Blankenbeckler" aria-label="Callee Blankenbeckler"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1356,2048/5646_image1_1.rev.1541713890.jpg" alt="Callee Blankenbeckler" title="Callee Blankenbeckler" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1356,2048/5646_image1_1.rev.1541713890.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1356,2048/5646_image1_1.rev.1541713890.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1356" data-max-h="2048"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/2453-callee-blankenbeckler"><p> Callee Blankenbeckler is a pharmacist who has a special talent for interacting with people.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p><strong>Dr. Callee Danielle Blankenbeckler</strong> is a 2014 Emory & Henry graduate who majored in biology. In May, 2018, she graduated summa cum laude with a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from Bill Gatton College of Pharmacy at ETSU. She is a pharmacist licensed in Virginia and Tennessee and is currently working for Food City pharmacy.</p><p> Callee finds the most rewarding part of her career being able to help patients better their health. “I find that pharmacists are among the most trusted professionals, and I like that I can be available for them to talk to. I’ve had so many conversations where a patient just needs someone to listen, and I’m so happy for any chance to brighten someone’s day a little.”</p><p> Callee says she had planned to go into pharmacy since she was a middle school student! And she is grateful for the preparation Emory & Henry gave her for her post undergraduate education. “I was definitely ahead of the game when I started pharmacy school. The education I received at Emory & Henry was far more than sufficient, including background knowledge of biology and chemistry and managing the course load.”</p><p> She enthusiastically encourages other young people to consider this field, and suggests they find a pharmacist who would allow them to shadow them at work or hints that they might get a pharmacy technician certification that will allow them to get experience in the field. “It’s an amazing career with a lot of different avenues you can take.”</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/2453-callee-blankenbeckler" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/718-" title="Fallon Walker Grindstead" aria-label="Fallon Walker Grindstead"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,975,975/437_unnamed.rev.1502370732.jpg" alt="Fallon Walker Grindstead" title="Fallon Walker Grindstead" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,975,975/437_unnamed.rev.1502370732.jpg 2x" data-max-w="975" data-max-h="975"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/718-"><p> Fallon Walker Grindstead, ’13 leads in Chilhowie </p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Fallon Walker Grinstead is a 2013 graduate of Emory & Henry from Chilhowie, Virginia. Fallon majored in our teacher preparation program in Health & Physical Education. She is entering her 5<sup>th</sup>year of teaching and her 9<sup>th</sup> year of coaching volleyball at Chilhowie Middle School. In 2014-2015, she helped create the Health and Physical Education curriculum for Smyth County Schools and last year she was honored as Teacher of the Year for her school. In addition, the past two years, the Chilhowie JV Volleyball team has won the Mountain West Conference Championship. Fallon says her overall goal is to “help each student find something active they enjoy.”</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/718-" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1893-bobbie-frentz-larkins" title="Bobbie Larkins" aria-label="Bobbie Larkins"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,33,512,545/3399_771885.rev.1519915305.jpg" alt="Bobbie Frentz Larkins" title="Bobbie Frentz Larkins" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="512" data-max-h="768"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1893-bobbie-frentz-larkins"><p> Bobbie Frentz Larkins is a great advocate for connecting E&H students to career possibilities at Eastman Chemical Company.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Bobbie Frentz Larkins received her Bachelors of Science degrees in Chemistry and Biology from Emory & Henry college in May, 2003. Bobbie taught high school Chemistry and Biology in Washington County, Virginia, from 2003 to 2007. In 2007, Bobbie joined Eastman Chemical Company as a part of the Specialty Plastics organization. Currently, Bobbie is a Portfolio Specialist focused on managing the growth portfolio for the Plastics business.<br/><br/> Bobbie joined the E&H Alumni board in 2012 with a passion to ensure that future generations have the opportunity to benefit from an Emory & Henry education. Bobbie has worked to develop an E&H Alumni network within Eastman Chemical Company as well as provide opportunities for E&H’s science students to interact with Eastman (networking opportunities, plant visits/tours, career mentoring, etc.).<br/><br/> Bobbie also has a focus on service within her community – a value instilled by E&H. Bobbie was a member of the Kingsport Junior League from 2011 to 2016, a member of the Tri-Cities ALS Association Board of Directors from 2012 to 2015 and is currently an active member of the Tennessee Doberman Rescue and Calvary Church in Johnson City, TN. Bobbie and her husband, David, are passionate about supporting animal rescues and providing for school-aged children in need.<br/><br/> In her spare time, Bobbie enjoys organic gardening and cooking as well as spending time with her husband, David, their two children, Katie (17) and Andrew (14), and their three dogs Matilda, Brodie and Shadow.</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/1893-bobbie-frentz-larkins" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/3-" title="Taequan Kates" aria-label="Taequan Kates"><img src="/live/image/gid/2/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1000,666/8_alumni-kates-taekuan.rev.1490105709.jpg" alt="Taequan Kates" title="Taequan Kates" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/2/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,1000,666/8_alumni-kates-taekuan.rev.1490105709.jpg 2x" data-max-w="1000" data-max-h="666"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/3-"><p> Taequan Kates (’16) Learns Legal Lessons While Interning With Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Summer breaks are meant to be exactly that: a break from the stress and hard work of the academic year. However, rising Emory & Henry College senior Taequan Kates has a tough time slowing down.</p><p> Kates who grew up in Dewitt, Va. spent much of the summer in Richmond completing an internship at the Office of Attorney General Mark Herring.</p><p> Kates was tasked with editing <em>Virginia Rules</em>, a book containing state laws to ensure it lined up with the current code statutes. His daily responsibilities found him working closely with attorneys in the office reviewing laws relevant to current cases.</p><h2> Work on Campus</h2><p> When not in the courtroom, Kates was making plans for his next big job – student body president. Kates along with fellow rising senior and student body vice-president Katie Beth Bordwine (who was also in Richmond, Va. for an internship) has been focused on a list of goals for the academic year.</p><p> Their first consideration: the feasibility of building an outdoor basketball court on campus.</p><p> “I’ve spoken with several colleges asking them about their program and trying to figure out a way to incorporate an outdoor court into our campus, and I hope this is something we can bring to Emory & Henry,” Kates said.</p><p> In his remaining free time, Kates spent time working as a counselor for at-risk children in his community. It’s a cause close to his heart, and he said he wants these children to become better citizens so they can grow up with the opportunities to chase their dreams.</p><p> “I’ve done a lot this summer, but I know all the hard work was worth it.”</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/3-" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1744-melvin-dillon" title="Melvin Dillon" aria-label="Melvin Dillon"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/346,345,1076,1074/3151_dillon.rev.1518206768.jpg" alt="Melvin Dillon" title="Melvin Dillon" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/346,345,1076,1074/3151_dillon.rev.1518206768.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/346,345,1076,1074/3151_dillon.rev.1518206768.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1432" data-max-h="1074"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1744-melvin-dillon"><p> Melvin Dillon is part of the Vinyl Revival</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Melvin Dillon (E&H ’06) is a musician himself, and used to play at venues in the Emory area while a student to make a little extra money. But as he got to know the industry, there were things that bothered him about the business of music. Says Melvin, “Soul Step Records is known because of our unwillingness to do business that serves our bottom line. We do everything in service to our artists. I think that’s why we’ve grown in such a short time.”</p><p> According to the Soul Step Records website, Melvin’s goal was simple; he wanted to give artists the ability to make vinyl records (so that music can be “listened to the way music should be…”). The thing that sets him apart from other music companies is that Soul Step pays all the upfront costs, and then profits are split evenly between the company and the band. “Our number one goal with each release is to have enough to fund another record. I have yet to take a dime from sales; every profit for Soul Step goes back into building up for another release. …Our relationship with our artists is paramount to us.”</p><p> And his good intentions are resulting in good business.</p><p> One of his current artist/clients is starring in <em>Hedwig and the Angry Inch on Broadway</em>, and most of the music he is recording is currently featured in TV and film. Another client is Holy Ghost Tent Revival, and he says getting to know them years ago, and seeing the struggles they had with traditional means of recording, served as much of the inspiration for his company.</p><p> Because he loves the artist aspect of the music business it allows him some great opportunities, including the fact that with each release they do 100 vinyl records in a special color – while the rest of the run is in the traditional black vinyl. One album garnered particularly interesting success with the cover art. “When I was releasing my third album, Matt Duncan’s <em>Soft Times</em> I saw the artwork that was done by Robert Beatty. It was this psych-tarot card freaky artwork. Truly beautiful …After seeing the tarot card artwork - I went to the pressing plant I was using and said I wanted to put a tarot card INSIDE the record. After much trial and error, and even going as far as accidentally setting a pressing machine on fire, we were able to conjure a way to make this happen. The results were stunning and we had mentions from tons of music and vinyl publications. These 100 records we made for that project will pop up on eBay – typically going over a hundred dollars. Crazy.”</p><p> </p><p> Melvin says his time at E&H helped prepare him for a business model that breaks the mold. “The big keyword is service. It’s hard to be a student of Emory and not have service of others instilled into you. The heart of this company is service. I think that Emory helps you understand the value in giving back. Many of my fellow alumni who are in position to do so find some way to give back. It’s something that I’m proud of. I’ve been very fortunate to find a job with a phenomenal company that puts me in the position to do this. I feel that it’s my duty to find a way to give back. I’m happy that Soul Step fills that need.”</p><p> </p><p> Melvin spends only part of his week with Soul Step, and is also a manager for Apple Computer.</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/1744-melvin-dillon" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2028-stewart-whitmore-plein" title="Stewart Plein" aria-label="Stewart Plein"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2133,3200/3894_34169_S_BFP_0136_XX.rev.1522863006.jpg" alt="Stewart Whitmore Plein" title="Stewart Whitmore Plein" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2133,3200/3894_34169_S_BFP_0136_XX.rev.1522863006.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,2133,3200/3894_34169_S_BFP_0136_XX.rev.1522863006.jpg 3x" data-max-w="2133" data-max-h="3200"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/2028-stewart-whitmore-plein"><p> Stewart Whitmore Plein (E&H ’82) is the Curator of Rare Books and Print Resources in the West Virginia & Regional History Center, the special collections unit of West Virginia University. </p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Growing up, Emory & Henry was always an essential stop for Stewart Whitmore Plein and the Whitmore family, on the way to visit grandparents in Gate City, Virginia. Her father, Ernest, a 1956 E&H graduate in History, made the detour through campus, driving slowly and pointing out favorite places and telling stories of his time at E&H. From her first trip through campus, Stewart knew she wanted to attend Emory & Henry someday. That day arrived in 1978, when she enrolled as a freshman.</p><p><br/> Born in Abingdon, Stewart is a 1982 graduate of Emory & Henry, with a degree in History, just like her father. She met her husband, Christopher Plein (’84) on campus and they married in the Emory & Henry Chapel in 1983. Stewart’s first job after graduation was working in the E&H Admissions office.</p><p><br/> Stewart is the Curator of Rare Books and Print Resources in the West Virginia & Regional History Center, the special collections unit of West Virginia University. Stewart says, “I double majored in history and religion at E&H and I use my degree every day in my work. My love of history and my education at Emory & Henry have been essential to my success as a curator, teaching students, working with donors and collections, and assisting faculty.”</p><p><br/> Stewart is also the Managing Director for the West Virginia National Digital Newspaper Project (NDNP) National Endowment for the Humanities grant in partnership with the Library of Congress. She received her Masters of Library Science from the University of South Carolina, and a certificate in Rare Book Librarianship from the University of Virginia’s Rare Book School.</p><p><br/> Stewart’s research and publishing interests include book history, bookbinding design, and Appalachian Studies. She is currently working on a book focusing on the development of the Appalachian stereotype on the covers of local color literature. Her work has appeared in the Journal of Appalachian Studies, the West Virginia History Journal and the Smithfield Review, among others. Her forthcoming book chapter, “A Sense of Place: The Rhododendron as Regional Identification on the Covers of Appalachian Local Color Literature,” is forthcoming in the two volume ecocritical anthology, Appalachian Nature, Appalachian Environment, from West Virginia University Press.</p><p><br/> Stewart works extensively with donors, teaches book history and rare book pedagogy sessions in the WVU rare book room, guest lectures, and always looks forward to reading a good book!</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/2028-stewart-whitmore-plein" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2055-nicole-powell" title="Nicole Powell" aria-label="Nicole Powell"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,24,1139,1161/4101_Nicole.rev.1525361616.png" alt="Nicole Powell" title="Nicole Powell" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,24,1139,1161/4101_Nicole.rev.1525361616.png 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,24,1139,1161/4101_Nicole.rev.1525361616.png 3x" data-max-w="1139" data-max-h="2017"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/2055-nicole-powell"><p> Nicole Powell’s life is a like a zoo …and she loves it that way!</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Nicole Powell has a nose for career success; but when it comes to stinky barns, she can’t smell a thing.</p><p> Nicole is currently a “Swing Keeper” at the Memphis Zoo – which means she gets to move around from one area to another depending on where she’s needed. One day she might be bottle-feeding baby goats, and another day she’s helping African Red River Hogs take a dip in the swimming pool. Nicole says they have young visitors who won’t go into some of the places where she works because they say it smells so bad; “but honestly, I smell nothing!”</p><p> Nicole was a Biology major (Chemistry minor), and she’s known for a long time this is the kind of work she wanted to do. At the end of her junior year at Emory & Henry she did an unpaid internship at the St. Louis Zoo in Missouri. But zoo work doesn’t come easily.</p><p> She has sent out 130 job applications. After graduation, she completed additional unpaid internships in Columbus, Ohio, and New Orleans. Nicole says most descriptions for job openings ask for several years of paid experience but sometimes they’ll accept unpaid work because they expect up-and-comers to do that. “Three internships is average, but some do five.”</p><p> She’s happy to have this job in Memphis, even if it is only a part-time position. She understands that this is how it works: you get in the system and then you have the chance to move around to the best zoos and bigger jobs. When the chance arises, “I have to take the opportunity.”</p><p> Nicole admits to wishing she could get back a bit closer to her home state of North Carolina, but she is willing to do what she needs to do in order to get closer to a fulltime, fulfilling career in zoo work, especially if it’s a chance to work with giraffes. “I’d move anywhere for that job!”</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/2055-nicole-powell" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/690-" title="Chris Whitt" aria-label="Chris Whitt"><img src="/live/image/gid/2/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,450,299/340_195154692a4a9ca21aec2fe00c319ccd_f7172.rev.1500309442.jpg" alt="Chris Whitt" title="Chris Whitt" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="450" data-max-h="299"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/690-"><p> It’s all Emory & Henry’s Fault</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> “While I was a student, I participated in a teaching abroad program in Brazil that was offered by the college, and I fell in love with the Brazilian culture and people. So I decided to make it my home.” So for 7 years he ran a school that taught English as a second language, and in 2008 he opened his very own such business in Londrina, Brazil, called High School Language Center. Solving more than one need for the community, his school gives families a chance for constructive child care. “My school offers an alternative to a babysitter for families who think learning another language is important. The kids from ages 2 1/2 and up study 3 hours per day at my school. They have a lot of fun learning.” Look for his school online and you’ll find projects like mystery movies his students produce to practice their English.</p><p> Chris is just one of many alumni who are using their E&H degrees to solve problems. If you know a student who might like to use education to make the world a better place, check out the <a href="https://www.ehc.edu/ampersand/">Ampersand</a> project at Emory & Henry!</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/690-" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1449-peggy-callison" title="Peggy Callison" aria-label="Peggy Callison"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,305,361/2422_Peggy_Callison.rev.1516637873.jpg" alt="Peggy Callison" title="Peggy Callison" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="305" data-max-h="361"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1449-peggy-callison"><p> Peggy Callison didn’t start college until she was in her 30s…so it is no surprise that she has authored a great book in her retirement. </p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Peggy has a great sense of humor about being a more mature author. In 2017, she stated, “Without doubt, I belong to the ‘Grandma Moses’ group of authors. I am nearing seventy-nine, and I published my first novel in 2015.”</p><p> </p><p> Peggy has raised her children and had a stellar, 25-year career as a secondary school educator, teaching speech and drama, debate, and creative writing. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Speech from Emory & Henry College, and a Master’s Degree in English from Middlebury College’s Bread Loaf School of English, Vermont. Her final semester was spent at Lincoln College, Oxford, England. </p><p> </p><p> Her book, Sock Monkey Doll, reflects her love for the region where she grew up: in the Appalachian Mountains of Southwest Virginia and East Tennessee. “My novel reflects the beauty of those majestic mountains and the harshness of cultural expectations.” She is mindful of the fact that she came of age at a time when education and career weren’t always on the list of expectations for young women. “The true stories of the lives of mountain women need to be written. My own life could have been very different. I graduated at the top of my high school class in 1958, and instead of sending me to college, I was told to go find a good man to marry. Not until I had been married twelve years did I go to college.”</p><p> </p><p> Peggy’s book is available through Amazon and Books-A-Million.</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/1449-peggy-callison" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1815-christina-druen" title="Christina Druen" aria-label="Christina Druen"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/233,0,1593,1361/3301_IMG_2692.rev.1518713658.JPG" alt="Christina Druen" title="Christina Druen" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/233,0,1593,1361/3301_IMG_2692.rev.1518713658.JPG 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/233,0,1593,1361/3301_IMG_2692.rev.1518713658.JPG 3x" data-max-w="2048" data-max-h="1361"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1815-christina-druen"><p> And on top of all this….she can really sing!</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><div> Christina Druen currently works as a graphic designer for K-VA-T Food Stores, Inc. In this role, she creates various print materials, social media graphics, videos and other materials for the Food City stores and events they sponsor including the Food City Family Race Night, Food City 500/300, and their Annual Golf Tournament. Before coming to K-VA-T, Christina worked as a Marketing & Design Coordinator for Southwest Virginia Community Health Systems (SVCHS) where she aided in the re-branding of the organization, designed print materials and helped manage their website and social media. Right before graduation, she landed a job working for a NASCAR K&N team, Martin-McClure Racing as their Public Relations Representative. In this role, she managed the team’s social media accounts, escorted drivers to all appearances and helped manage the “Racing for 90.7 and Emory & Henry” project. Simultaneously, she worked for Dogwood Marketing located in Abingdon, Virginia, as a graphic designer and sales representative before coming to SVCHS. </div><div><br/> In her spare time, Christina works as a Marketing & Design Consultant to help smaller local businesses and non-profits with their marketing needs. She has completed work for Family Promise of Bristol, Garic Stephens and Lavelle Manufacturing, Borderline Billiards, Apple Ridge Photography, First Bank & Trust, Emory & Henry College, Clinch Valley Printing, and more. </div><div><br/> Christina also serves as a board member for the American Advertising Federation of Southwest Virginia. As the Communications Team Leader, her responsibilities include getting information out about their events, managing and updating their website, creating graphics and content for their social media platforms, writing press releases, creating email campaigns and aiding in planning events. </div><div><br/> During her time at Emory & Henry, Christina worked as an Events and Operations Intern for the Academy of Country Music in Los Angeles, California, and a Volunteer Captain for the Annual Academy of Country Music Awards in Los Vegas. She also interned for a popular local band, Annabelle’s Curse, as well as Family Promise of Bristol as their Communications Intern. On campus, she was the Director of EHC-TV, President of Alpha Psi Omega, President of the E&H Choral Department, Treasurer and Founding Member of the AAF Student Chapter, Business Manager of the Whitetopper, Manager of The Sphinx, House Manager and Volunteer Coordinator for the McGlothlin Center for the Arts, Graphic Design Intern for the Admissions Office, and Writer for The Odyssey Online. </div><div><br/> Christina resides in Abingdon, VA. When she’s not working, you can catch her at Borderline Billiards bar-tending and shooting pool. </div></div><a href="/live/profiles/1815-christina-druen" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/2494-cortney-halsey" title="Cortney Halsey" aria-label="Cortney Halsey"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/43,37,595,589/5791_IMG_1051_1.rev.1546634866.JPG" alt="Cortney Halsey" title="Cortney Halsey" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" data-max-w="600" data-max-h="600"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/2494-cortney-halsey"><p> Dr. Cortney Halsey is an occupational therapist who is serving her alma mater as a devoted career mentor.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><p> Cortney Halsey finished at E&H with a B.S. in Biology in 2014. In 2017 she completed a doctorate of Occupational Therapy in the charter class of Murphy Deming College of Health Sciences (MDCHS) at Mary Baldwin University.</p><p> She is currently working full time as an occupational therapist embedded into the Pre-employment Readiness and Education Program (PREP) at Wilson Workforce and Rehabilitation Center (WWRC). The position is the first of its kind. Cortney feels blessed to be in this recently created position. “ In collaboration with the OT department, we submitted a position proposal to the Department of Aging and Rehabilitation Services (DRS). The position was approved soon after I completed my doctoral experience at the center.”</p><p> Her responsibilities in the position include serving young adults with disabilities as they pursue independent living and vocational opportunities. Her special interests include sensory integration, assistive technology, and community integration. Cortney also represents WWRC in the DRS sponsored Autism Project and is a core member of the Autism Advocacy Partnership at the center. She supports academic institutions, as a project mentor for MDCHS’s Community Practicum course and precepts Level I OT Students from MDCHS and James Madison University.</p><p> She also works per diem at UVA-Encompass Health, an inpatient rehabilitation hospital in Charlottesville, as an occupational therapist for adults with acute neurological and orthopedic impairments.</p><p> Cortney doesn’t let being busy get in the way of supporting her alma mater. She was the Lyceum Keynote Speaker at E&H’s cognitive community team’s annual Autism event last year. In the summer of 2018, she collaborated with a current E&H student on a summer internship project at WWRC. Cortney says she loved getting to know Sarah Ingram, and the experience was also important for her as a new professional. “It is evident that servant leadership remains an Emory & Henry core value. Sarah, like most E&H students I can imagine, provide tangible and contextual resources through the understanding of place, thus she was able to provide current and future clients with tangible resources and education. Accessibility to resources, experiences, and opportunities will support potential and resiliency for all abilities. Sarah’s presence at our center and E&H’s commitment to service will provide this access to so many.”</p><p> Cortney used her E&H undergrad years to the fullest extent, not only excelling as an accomplished academic student, but also as a well-rounded athlete (she played softball) and campus leader (student director of orientation, member Delta Omicron Pi, Hope Award winner 2014, Homecoming Queen 2012). She says her E&H experience prepared her for the world of work she finds herself in now by “instilling a love for innovation, desire for life-long learning and joy in trials or barriers. Emory & Henry challenged me to be a spark and not someone’s flame. The greatest reward may be the moments someone chose to change their life with one of your tools and their unique self, rather than your gifts alone attributing to that change. I am humbled by this principle every moment as an Occupational Therapist,” says Cortney.</p><p> In 2018, Cortney married college sweetheart Dr. Jeremiah Jessee (E&H re’15, ETSU Pharmacy School ’18). Jeremiah is a pharmacy resident at Sentara Rockingham Memorial Hospital in Harrisonburg, VA and will be taking a second year Oncology residency later this year.</p></div><a href="/live/profiles/2494-cortney-halsey" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>
- <span class="lw_item_thumb"><a href="/live/profiles/1295-sarah-agron" title="Sarah Agron" aria-label="Sarah Agron"><img src="/live/image/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,857,1132/1875_me.rev.1515517710.png" alt="Sarah Agron" title="Sarah Agron" class="lw_image" width="345" height="225" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/68/width/345/height/225/crop/1/src_region/0,0,857,1132/1875_me.rev.1515517710.png 2x" data-max-w="857" data-max-h="1132"/></a></span><div class="lw_widget_text"><h4 class="lw_profiles_headline"><a href="/live/profiles/1295-sarah-agron"><p> Sarah’s work with Migrant Health Network gives her a new perspective on the world.</p></a></h4><div class="lw_profiles_description"><div> Sarah Agron’s internship with the Migrant Health Network was likely the key to her being hired. And she credits her E&H professors with pushing her to try new challenges. “My professors helped to push me out of my comfort zone in many different ways, and encouraged me to push through my timidity when it came to speaking another language.”<br/><br/> Her job title is Outreach Worker. with Migrant Health Network. “What I do is reach out to the migrant farm worker population here in Washington and Smyth counties and offer my help with anything they might be needing regarding health care. I offer interpretation, transportation, and care navigation. I’m basically a bilingual case manager. Also, I try to help with filling out insurance applications and providing health education materials in Spanish.”<br/><br/> Sarah says the Migrant Health Network’s goal is to provide services/care to as many migrant workers as possible. “Our group has 4 workers each serving about 3 counties a piece here in Southwest Virginia. In 2017, we served 720 farm workers. We hope for that number to grow for 2018. Our organization is about providing care to those who would normally feel helpless to try to go about taking care of their health care needs.”<br/><br/> She says every day presents a new challenge, and because the culture is so different from hers and because she’s dealing with medical issues, she is always having to expand her vocabulary. “I can go in with a patient to a regular check-up, and the next thing I know, the doctor is talking about different kinds of deep sea fish the patient should be eating, or maybe some kind of neurological illness I’ve never heard of before.”<br/><br/> She says she appreciates not only the education she got at Emory & Henry…but also the empathy she gained. “By the time I graduated from E&H in 2015, I had learned to see what was going on in the world through other people’s eyes, which has helped me considerably in a job where I am almost constantly with those from another culture and background.”</div><div/><div/><div/></div><a href="/live/profiles/1295-sarah-agron" class="link-with-arrow gold">Keep reading</a></div>