AU CoffeeBreak 3-25-14

Posted on March 25th, 2015 by Emily Tomlinson


CoffeeBreak is an e-newsletter distributed to Averett faculty and staff to keep them up to date on campus activities and information.

Please send information you would like included in CoffeeBreak via this form by 4:30 p.m. March 27 for an April 1 publication.



11007727_10102660554454368_3734245402706289825_nWelcome to the Family

On March 18, Dr. Catherine “Katy” Clark and her husband, Michael Roberts, welcomed their second child, a healthy baby girl named Penelope Lee. Katy is an Assistant Professor of French and English, and Director of Study Abroad. Michael will graduate this May from Averett with his second Bachelor’s degree. Congratulations!

img_6014Student and Professor Battle it Out

Recently, Quantico GPS student Tom Sedlacek and Assistant Professor of Art Lee Sandstead duked it out in the Category 4 cycling race at the Richmond International Raceway. While Tom does not race for a team, Lee was racing for BikeWorks Racing out of Fredericksburg.

“It all came down to the last few laps,” said Lee. “My role for the team was to control the front of the race as much as possible-chasing down any breakaway riders and keeping up the pace. On the last turn I was in the front for the lead with our two sprinters behind me, and when they went—Tom went as well. One of my teammates won the race, while the other placed fourth!”

And Tom? He smashed the sprint with a second-place finish.

Sandstead hopes that cycling takes off at Averett. He has created a student-driven Facebook page “Cycling@Averett.”




award1Faculty/Staff Award Nominations

There’s less than a week left to nominate your peers for the annual Faculty and Staff of the Year Awards. Please consider nominating a colleague for a job well done. Nominations are due by 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 31 and may be emailed to In your nomination, you must include why you are nominating the faculty or staff member. For more information about the awards, please click here.

main_hallComing Soon: Improvements for AU Students

Three exciting new projects will soon be underway for the benefit of Averett students:

More advanced labs for Biology and Chemistry students: The labs in Frith 404 and 406 will soon be combined into one large and much-improved lab featuring nine new work stations, new black lab sinks, new faucets, new cabinets with sliding glass doors and more. In Frith 400, a new 10′ fume hood with corrosive and flammable storage cabinets will be installed in the chemistry lab. In addition, improvements will be made in the chemical storage and preparation rooms. And in Frith 304, a new lab sink will be added. (Total cost: approximately $85,000, all fully funded by the Carrington Trust, Centra and an anonymous donor.)

New first-in-class technology for Nursing students: Thanks to the generosity of our donors, Averett is equipping our Nursing students with new technology that includes mobile medication carts, electronic medical records and iPads. This is the same technology used in Averett’s partner hospitals, which means that our Nursing students will be able to step seamlessly out of the classroom and into the clinical environment. Other new technology includes a pregnant SimMom who gives birth, plus new digital bedside cameras and simulation equipment for debriefing. (Total cost: approximately $147,000, all fully funded by the Tobacco Commission and Centra.)

New life for the old gym: Exciting news for future intramural teams and other student groups: the old gym (located beneath the new Violet T. Frith Fine Arts Center) will soon be getting a major facelift. Renovations will include a refinished gym floor, a new ceiling, new backboards, new plexiglass windows, an upgraded bathroom and a new heating and air conditioning system. These improvements have already begun. (Total cost: approximately $125,000, all fully funded.)

week_engageVolunteer for Week to Engage!

Week to Engage is not just for students! We have organized projects to accommodate more than 700 volunteers, so we need help from faculty and staff, too!

Dr. Franks has already signed up to spend her Wednesday afternoon playing Bingo with the senior community at Ingram Heights, and Aramark has volunteered their time to work with the Boys and Girls Club and United Way.

Contact Rachel Covington with the day and time your department/group is available to volunteer! Visit to see the list of volunteer opportunities.

meeting1University Staff Meeting

Please note that the April University-wide staff meeting has been moved to Thursday, April 30 at 11:15 a.m. in the multipurpose room in the Student Center. We will see you then.

Thank you for the food donations for our pantry in support of HOPE project.

attendeesattherecoveringhopeconferenceWorkshop for Area Pastors

On Monday, March 16, a group of about 25 pastors gathered here at Averett to enjoy a workshop on “Recovering Hope for Your Church.” The speaker was Eddie Hammett, author of the recent book, “Recovering Hope for Your Church.” Pastors drove from as far away as Richmond and other surrounding areas in order to participate. The conference was a terrific time of professional development and interaction for area pastors.

The event was jointly sponsored by the Religious Studies Department and the Baptist General Association of Virginia.

inclement_weather1SKYWARN Class Offered at Averett

The National Weather Service out of Blacksburg will be offering the Basic SKYWARN® class on Tuesday, March 31 from 6-8 p.m. in Blount Chapel.

SKYWARN® is a volunteer program comprised of more than 250,000 volunteers nationwide. These volunteers help keep their local communities safe by providing timely and accurate reports of severe weather to the National Weather Service. This ground truth information motivates those in the path of impending severe weather to seek shelter resulting in lives saved. The training, which is open to faculty, staff, students and the community, is free. To learn more visit:

If you have any questions, please contact Marsha Foster, Associate Dean of Students at 434-791-5628.




student_accoladesStudent Accolades

Last fall, the Student Life Department began recognizing students who go the extra mile in whatever they are doing on campus. Each week during Student Life staff meetings, the Department nominates students whose dedication they want to recognize. Students are notified about the recognition and informed of their chance to win a $50 Visa Gift Card at the end of the semester.

The students nominated this week are Jewel Dale, Carter Jones, Katie Abelseth and Chris Walton.

arnold_amandaEquestrian Student Qualifies for National Competition

Junior Amanda Arnold has qualified for the national finals of the Teresa L. McDonald Scholarship Challenge held by the Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association. Amanda was one of almost 200 IHSA members who took a written test online to compete for one of 16 finalist spots.

She will travel to Springfield, Mass. in May to be tested on her practical knowledge in the stable by two judges at the IHSA National Competition. Her practical score will be added to her written test score to determine her final placing. The top ten finalists will receive scholarships from the IHSA education committee. Last year, Jessie Hayes ’14 placed ninth in the inaugural competition.




IDA_March2015IDA Team Ends Regular Season with a Win

By Jessica Stipic

Averett University’s Intercollegiate Dressage Association (IDA) team closed its regular season with a first place for team B and a fourth place for team A — finishing up as the highest scoring team in region 1. Along with first place at the show and high scoring season overall, Scnobia Stewart was high point rider of the day and Kathleen Nettnin was reserve high point rider. For the season, Micah Andrews was high point rider and Amanda Arnold was reserve in first level, and Hannah Walters was high point rider in upper training.

The Dressage Seat Equitation (DSE) championship started off the day at Saint Andrews University. For intro, Kristen Kelley placed sixth and Adeline Bova placed third. Next in training level, Walters won the class, Stewart placed fifth, and Dana Ellwanger placed sixth. In first level, Arnold won the class and Andrews placed fourth.

Team A consisted of Micah Andrews, Hannah Walters, Sydney Owen and Jessica Stipic. Andrews, in first level, placed fourth with a 68 percent. In upper, Hannah placed seventh in a tight division scoring a 70.3 percent. In lower, Sydney placed sixth with a 69.4 percent. Lastly, in intro, Jessica Stipic placed second with a 74.6 percent.

In Team B, Amanda Arnold, Scnobia Stewart, Kathleen Nettnin, and Adeline Bova all had terrific rides. Arnold won the first level class with a 72 percent. Scnobia won her the upper level class with an 82 percent and Kathleen won lower training with an 80 percent. In intro, Adeline placed fifth with a 68 percent.

IDA Nationals will be held April 24-26 at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio.




dubois_joshuaAverett Hosts DRF Speaker Series

The CCECC is partnering with the Danville Regional Foundation to make Week to Engage a community-wide event! Since Week to Engage falls during National Volunteer Week, DRF is calling the entire community to engage in service to create an even larger impact on our region.

To kick off the week, join DRF’s Speaker Series on Monday, April 13 at Averett’s North Campus. A reception will start at 5:30 p.m., and Joshua DuBois will speak at 6:30 p.m. Please help us spread the word around campus, especially to students.

DuBois, considered President Obama’s “Pastor-in-Chief” by TIME magazine, will be speaking on the importance of community engagement and service in building strong and vibrant neighborhoods.

There is no cost to attend, but reservations are required. Contact Rachel Covington by Friday, April 3rd to reserve your spot. For more information, check out the flyer.