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Southern Virginia University

Posts with the tag: Alumni

  1. Alumni Association Fundraiser and Essay Contest

    August 1, 2014

    The Southern Virginia University Alumni Association (SVUAA) is sponsoring a fundraiser in the form of an essay contest for all Southern Virginia alumni. By participating in this contest, alumni have the opportunity to give back to their alma mater, share about some of their most meaningful experiences at Southern Virginia, and enter to win an all-expense-paid trip for two to Homecoming this year.

    The Fundraiser

    In order to enter the essay contest, alumni must do one of the following:

    • Contribute a one-time donation of $50 (be sure to enter “SVUAA Essay Contest” in the comments section)
    • Sign up for the Alumni Association’s 5-Buck-a-Month program (select “Alumni Association,” then “5 buck (or more) a month program,” then indicate the amount — at least $5 — that you would like to have debited from your account each month)

    Alumni who already participate in the 5-Buck-a-Month program will not be required to make any additional donations. All funds raised through this essay contest will go toward improving Southern Virginia’s classrooms. These improvements could include installing new whiteboards, purchasing and installing projectors, painting, and other physical improvements that will help the university better meet the needs of all current and future students.

    The Essay

    Entrants for this essay will have 500 words or fewer to write on one of the topics below:

    • Write about a specific Southern Virginia course or professor who made an unmistakable impact on your life.
    • Describe a memory you have that you feel is quintessentially Southern Virginia — that takes you back to all you love and remember about your time spent there.
    • Southern Virginia has experienced amazing growth in the past 18 years. How do you picture the school 20 years from now? What do you think will change? What do you hope will stay the same?

    Please email your completed essay to by Aug. 22, 2014. All essays must be written in English. Include with the essay: your full name, your graduation year, your state or providence of residence, and a current photo of yourself. Entries will be judged by the Alumni Association Executive Council and the winner will be announced on September 5, 2014.

    The Prize

    The author of the winning essay, as determined by the Alumni Association Executive Council, will receive the following:

    • Two roundtrip plane tickets to this year’s Homecoming (Oct. 10-12, 2014)
    • Lodging for the duration of Homecoming
    • A rental car for use during Homecoming
    • A $300 gift card for food and miscellaneous expenses
    • The winning essay published on the official Southern Virginia University blog and social media platforms

    Authors of the second and third place essays will receive:

    • Gift cards to the Southern Virginia Campus Bookstore ($50 for second, $20 for third)
    • Their essays published on the official Southern Virginia University blog

    The Fine Print

    • Alumni who elect to participate in the 5-Buck-a-Month program agree to remain in the program for at least ten months, or until $50 of donations have been contributed.
    • Southern Virginia University is a Section 501(c)3 nonprofit and your gift may qualify as a charitable deduction for federal income tax purposes. Please consult a tax adviser or the IRS to determine the how much of your contribution is deductible.
    • All submitted essays become the property of the Southern Virginia University Alumni Association. By submitting an essay in this contest, entrants give the Alumni Association permission to use, alter, distribute, publish, broadcast, and display the submitted essay, the entrant’s name, and the submitted photo and residential information on the Southern Virginia University website or blog, elsewhere on the Internet, in advertising and promotional materials, and in any other format for purposes related to the Alumni Association.
    • The first-place winner will receive two tickets to and from an airport near Buena Vista, Va. We will make every effort to accommodate anyone who wins, no matter where in the world he or she lives. However, winners in remote locations  may be required to provide their own transportation to and from a major international airport. Should any major complicating circumstances arise (e.g. war, major strikes, natural disasters) in or near any locations the winner may need to travel through, we may not be able to complete travel arrangements as expected. However, we promise to make every reasonable effort to get the winner here, at our expense, no matter where his or her journey may start or end.
    • Plane tickets will be purchased to bring the winner in on Friday, Oct. 10, 2014 and fly the winner back home on Sunday, October 12, 2014. If necessary, we might be able to accommodate winners who would like to fly in earlier or stay longer; however, we cannot guarantee this as an option. No matter what the final dates are for the plane tickets, lodging and a rental car will be provided only during the duration of Homecoming.
    • In the event that the winning entrant lives close enough to Buena Vista that a plane ticket is not necessary, the winner has the option to forego the plane ticket and accept in its place a $50 gift card to the Southern Virginia University bookstore. All other prizes would remain as listed above.

    (Post by the Alumni Association Executive Council.)

  2. Photos & Videos: Commencement

    June 30, 2014

    We enjoyed a beautiful Commencement on May 8, 2014, with addresses by Elaine S. Dalton and three graduating seniors. View their speeches and a Commencement video below.

    Commencement 2014 Video

    Elaine S. Dalton

    Valedictorian George Ryan Sloan

    Salutatorian Sariah Benson Rodriguez

    Senior Speaker Gregory J. Turner

    (Post by Hannah King ’13. Photos by Brinn Willis ’07, Jordan Wunderlich ’16, Hysen Justo, and Hannah King ’13. Videos by John Worthington ’13.)

  3. Throwback Thursday on Friendship Lane

    June 19, 2014


    Yeah, that’s right. You’re looking at a photo of a bunch of college kids standing around a street sign that reads, “Friendship Lane.” This was the summer of 2010, and I think we were on our way back from The Cheese Shop, which may explain why we took such a cheesy photo. That summer was so much fun. Nothing really monumental happened — I mean, we stopped by Foamhenge, but that’s more of a faux monument — but it was all the little things we did as friends that made it so memorable.

    One day we hiked from Lexington to BV. Some of us had a Toy Story marathon which culminated in going to the theaters to see the newly released Toy Story 3 (which is still my favorite movie by the way). A bunch of us were regular participants in yoga club. Many of my friends were in the summer musical, “Annie, Get Your Gun.” I was a FHE group leader in the summer ward, and we had great activities, including when we ambushed another FHE group with water balloons and they totally soaked us in retaliation. A thousand such memories cloak those months in an aura of magical nostalgia.

    Today, everyone in that photo has graduated. (Actually, I think they’re withholding my diploma until I pay all those library fines, but it’s close enough.) It’s amazing to look back and see how far I’ve come in four years. There are many things I appreciate about Southern Virginia University. The liberal arts education, the spiritual environment, the opportunities to participate, the small classes and personal attention from professors are a few of these things. But what makes me truly love this place are the friendships I’ve made since coming here.

    (Post by Alec Johnson ’14.)

  4. National Association Features Tyson Cooper (’07)

    January 15, 2014

    BOM201312_BackStoryThe National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO) featured Tyson Cooper (’07) in an article by Margo Vanover Porter.

    Cooper, a Southern Virginia University graduate, currently serves as director of student financial services and associate director of human resources at Southern Virginia. He received a master’s degree from Liberty University in 2011. He and his wife, Camden, live in Buena Vista, Va., with their four children.

    Read NACUBO’s feature to learn more about how Cooper has improved the university’s Student Financial Services Office.

    (Post by Hannah Benson Rodriguez ’13.)

  5. Southern Virginia Graduate Teaches Spanish In Local School

    December 17, 2013

    IMG_0064Jordan Clark (’13) is one of the latest Southern Virginia University alumni to put his education to use in the local community. Clark started teaching Spanish at the middle school level in Lexington, Va., this fall.

    “I love it,” Clark said. “I love waking up and doing what I studied for and what I wanted to do. It’s great to have a job that you worked hard for.”

    Clark learned Spanish while living in Peru as a full-time missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. While attending Southern Virginia, he quickly realized he had a passion for the Spanish language.

    “When I came back from my mission,” Clark said, “I learned I loved the culture and language, and that’s when I decided that’s what I wanted to do.”

    Clark, who transferred to Southern Virginia in 2010 after attending Santa Barbara City College, chose to major in Spanish and minor in politics.

    After working as a Spanish tutor at Virginia Military Institute in Lexington while he was still a student, Clark now teaches sixth, seventh, and eighth grade Spanish at Lilburn Downing Middle School. Clark still plans on furthering his education at the graduate level, and hopes to teach college eventually. But for now, he enjoys teaching Spanish to younger students. In the two years he spent as a student at Southern Virginia, Clark found that small classes with personal focus are the most effective model of education.

    “I love the small class environment,” he said. “When I was at my old school in California, I was in classes with 125 students. It was so impersonal. You didn’t know the professor, they didn’t know you, you were just a name on a list. But I believe in the genius of small. What made the difference was being able to interact with the teacher one on one. That’s what I try to do with my students. I try to imitate what I did here with my professors.”


    Clark says the most helpful aspect of small classes at Southern Virginia he’s been able to transfer to the middle school level is teaching a foreign language through conversation.

    “[Professor] Konstantinova’s teaching style in the class was more conversational,” Clark said. “Which really showed how teaching can be more than just standing in front of a class lecturing, but actually talking back and forth and having a conversation.”