Posted on Tuesday, October 8, 2019

“I know that at work, I’m in my own cyclone of activity, so it’s a real benefit to be able to come to an event like this and get a more statewide perspective.”  

Wanda Davis-Alves (l.) and Lisa Shifflett McDaniel.

Lisa Shiflett McDaniel, president of the Virginia Community Colleges Association sees a definite up-side to annual conferences that give college faculty, staff and administrators a chance to gather, and share ideas that work…and don’t work.

“Sometimes I’m struggling with a project, and it can really help to see how other people at other colleges approach things.  Making connections and relationships makes us all more successful.”

VCCA is open to administrators, faculty, staff and friends of the system, and seeks to offer a strong voice to support the system’s mission and services. Besides taking an active role in the identification and examination of changing needs, the VCCA is an agent for professional development, sponsoring small and large group events designed to increase knowledge and skills.

Wanda Davis-Alves, student services specialist at John Tyler’s division of learning and student success, now begins her term as VCCA president for 2020. 

The 37th Annual Conference of the Virginia Community Colleges Association (VCCA) drew about 150 participants to Norfolk Sept. 25-27.



VCCA bestowed its “Lifetime Award” this year to Vickie Banks, who’s worked at Central Virginia Community College for 34 years, the last 24 in the college’s accounting office.  “It’s wonderful to be appreciated like this,” said Banks. “We all have one mission, and that’s to serve our students. And that’s what I’m all about servicing our students and making sure they have what they need to succeed and anything I can do to help them.”

The Association honored Todd Parks, Piedmont Virginia Community College’s director of academic support services and first year programs, with its 2019 “Excellence in Education” award. “Helping to guide and retain students is never work we do just by ourselves,” said Parks.  “Especially during a period of declining enrollment, we need to be willing to walk alongside students, and help them achieve their goals.  It’s vital to their success, and to our own.”

Learn more about the VCCA at'

Jim Babb

Jim Babb works for Virginia's Community Colleges in the Office of Strategic Communications.

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