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Wilkes Community College held its 24th Annual Student Awards ceremony on Wednesday, April 7. The program was hosted virtually for the second year in a row due to COVID-19 restrictions. Notifications and awards were mailed to the recipients prior to the event. Students received a variety of academic, club, and leadership awards. WCC is proud of the many accomplishments of its students and congratulates everyone listed below on their well-earned recognitions.

NCCCS Academic Excellence Award

The Academic Excellence Award honors a WCC student who has demonstrated academic excellence both in terms of earned Grade Point Average and as an active member of Wilkes Community College. Each NC community college’s Academic Excellence Award recipient is submitted to the system office to be recognized as one of the NC Community Colleges’ “Great Within the 58.”

Jayme Martin was selected as this year’s WCC recipient. She started her college experience at Wilkes Community College during her freshman year of high school, through the Early College High School Program. Martin found a love for graphic design and entered the Advertising and Graphic Design Program. She will graduate from the program in May. Her career in the field received a jump start through the NC Apprenticeship program.

Martin stated that her teachers and mentors throughout the years have been key to her success and provided guidance every step of the way. She stated, “With the skills I learned at WCC, I had the confidence to start my own small business, and the ability to do my own marketing and design for it. I was able to design a logo and website from scratch, take professional product photos, and build a community of over 7,000 followers on social media in a little over a year. I was also able to connect with people in my community to offer freelance design services and build my network both on and offline.” Martin hopes to continue her journey by continuing to take classes at WCC in the future, as a way of lifelong learning and gaining new skills in other areas of interest that will be helpful in both her personal and professional life.

Dallas Herring Achievement Award

The Dallas Herring Achievement Award is established by the North Carolina Community College System to honor the late Dr. Dallas Herring whose philosophy of “taking people where they are and carrying them as far as they can go” is the guiding principle of the system. Each NC community college selects its own honoree, then submits that student as a nominee for the state award, which is given annually to a community college student who best embodies Dr. Herring’s philosophy.

Zackary Wagoner was selected as WCC’s winner of the Dallas Herring Award. He is the perfect example of a community college “taking people where they are and carrying them as far as they can go.” Wagoner’s love of plants led him to begin his WCC journey through the Career College Promise horticulture classes offered at North Wilkes High School.

After graduating from high school, Wagoner continued his studies at WCC and will graduate in May. He has done extremely well and has earned a 3.9 GPA. Excelling in coursework is just one aspect of Zack. He is a member of the National Technical Honor Society and the Rotaract Club. Through the Horticulture club, he has traveled to expos in Kentucky, helped set up the NC Nursery and Landscape Trade Show, and competed in the NC Landscape Competition. His work with Students Overcoming Boundaries in Education is one of distinction. April Teague, the club advisor, tells us in the time of COVID-19, his strong leadership in the SOBiE Club became not just important, but downright essential. He worked tirelessly to keep the club’s spirit alive during these challenging times. Zack has served in every club officer position since he joined, including moving to that of President during this semester.

Wagoner also gained skills through three internships in collaboration with Vocational Rehab. He has worked with Lowe’s Hardware, Harold’s Nursery, and Bee Sow Happy Farms. Wagoner plans to start his own greenhouse business. When asked about Wilkes Community College, Wagoner stated, “They embraced me as an individual and chose to see my abilities and provided an opportunity for me to show them what I can do. They believe in me!”

Bob Scott Leadership Award

The Bob Scott Leadership Award nominee should have a minimum 2.5 GPA, be active in campus activities, and possess traits that will help them be or become leaders in their communities. Each NC community college nominates a student for the state award. Six finalists (one from each trustee region) will be selected; then community college representatives, including presidents, will select the system’s award winner.

The Governor Robert W. Scott Student Leadership Award nominee for WCC is Sarah Inscore. Inscore serves many roles within the Wilkes Community College student body and her community. As a WCC SGA Senator and now Vice President, Inscore has been active in campus activities and programs. As a Wilkes Early College High School student, she has thrived at both the early college and within the traditional campus setting. A Bob Scott Leadership nominee must be active in campus activities and lead in the community. Inscore is continuously active in both. Within campus activities, she has assisted with numerous campus activities including blood drives, welcome back lunches, Domestic Violence Awareness events, stress-free exam activities, Fall Festival, Voter Registration Drive, Constitution Day, Spring Fling and more.

Her dedication to the goals of student leadership is demonstrated not only by her role as an SGA leader, but also within WCC’s Global Perspectives Scholars Club, and involvement in the early college Beta Club and Student Council. Inscore’s dedication to her own personal growth is recognized both on and off-campus. By participating in various programs and organizations, Sarah has developed leadership skills and traits that will help her as she transitions from Wilkes Community College to a four-year university and beyond.

Site/Campus Awards

Each campus, center, and early college high school recognizes outstanding students at their sites, based on academic achievement, growth, service, and extra-curricular activities.

Alleghany Center Award

David Chase Glass – Outstanding Student

Ashe Campus Award

Bradley Harmon – Outstanding Student

Ashe Early College High School Award

Elizabeth Wallace – Outstanding Student

Wilkes Early College High School Award

Jeffrey Tyler Snotherly – Outstanding Student

PRESIDENT’S EXCELLENCE AWARDS

Tate J. Foster, Hays

Sierra Hall, Hiddenite

Sarah Inscore, North Wilkesboro

Yesenia Lara, North Wilkesboro

Daniel T. Mathis, Roaring River

Garren J. Smith, Hiddenite

Brian D. Tyler, Wilkesboro

Chloe M. Wagoner, North Wilkesboro

Thomas Kyle Watts, Millers Creek

WCC ACADEMIC PROGRAM AWARDS

One student from each program area is selected for an outstanding student award. The selection of the outstanding student award is based on academic achievement, faculty nominations, participation in the program area, critical thinking, and eligibility for graduation. The recognition includes a plaque, a certificate, and a notation on the student transcript. Faculty are also able to recognize additional students in programs with 15 or more graduates with certificates of academic achievement.

PROGRAM EXCELLENCE AWARDS

Arts & Sciences

David M. Barlow, Wilkesboro- Outstanding Student in Associate in Arts

Sydnee Grace Burchette, North Wilkesboro — Outstanding Achievement in Associate in Arts

Sara Ann Pardo, Millers Creek — Outstanding Achievement in Associate in Arts

Valorie Elise Wheeler, Taylorsville — Outstanding Achievement in Associate in Arts

Nolan Wayne Cothren, Millers Creek — Outstanding Achievement in Associate in Arts

Chloe M. Wagoner, North Wilkesboro — Outstanding Achievement in Associate in Arts

Jessa L. Muller, Wilkesboro — Outstanding Achievement in Associate in Arts

Abigail J. Sheets, Wilkesboro — Outstanding Achievement in Associate in Arts

Tommy Isaac Dollar, Todd — Outstanding Student in Associate in Science

Katie Nicole Billings, Traphill — Outstanding Achievement in Associate in Science

Elizabeth Grace Wallace, West Jefferson — Outstanding Achievement in Associate in Science

Rebekah Nicole Blair, North Wilkesboro — Outstanding Achievement in Associate in Science

Business & Public Service Technologies

Lauren Cade Terrell, Taylorsville — Outstanding Student in Accounting & Finance

Jayme Martin, Purlear — Outstanding Student in Advertising & Graphic Design

Shannon Bowlin, Moravian Falls — Outstanding Achievement in Advertising & Graphic Design

Sharon B. Lyons, Glade Valley — Outstanding Student in Business Administration

Brittany Nicole Hayes, Laurel Springs — Academic Achievement in Business Administration

Kevin Jordan Oakes, North Wilkesboro — Outstanding Student in Criminal Justice

Josh Saffold, Wilkesboro — Outstanding Student in Culinary Arts Technology

Ashley Greene Shew, North Wilkesboro — Outstanding Student in Early Childhood Education

Kayla Leigh Johnson, McGrady — Outstanding Student in Information Technology, Computer Programming

Joel Tyler Hubbard, Wilkesboro — Outstanding Student in Information Technology, Network Management

Jonathan Wayne Latos, North Wilkesboro — Academic Achievement in Information Technology, Network Management

Health Sciences

Destiny Leigh Diclemente, Yadkinville — Outstanding Student in Dental Assisting

Kendra Fox, Taylorsville — Academic Achievement in Dental Assisting

Cassandra L. Crislip, North Wilkesboro — Outstanding Student in Emergency Medical Science

Ethan Hooker, Mount Airy — Outstanding Student in Emergency Medical Science, Bridge Program

Nicolia Debty Miller Briggs, Wilkesboro — Outstanding Student in Human Services

Kathryn Renee Ellis, Millers Creek — Outstanding Student in Medical Assisting

Melissa P. Pennell, Millers Creek — Outstanding Student in Nursing

Christofher Sonda-Lopez, Crumpler — Academic Achievement in Nursing

Audrey Wilcox Johnson, Millers Creek — Outstanding Student in Radiography

Kristen Burwell Hubbard, Statesville — Outstanding Student in Respiratory Therapy

Applied Career Technologies

Christy Greer, Taylorsville — Outstanding Student in Animal Science

Gabriela Vanesa Roberts, Roaring River — Academic Achievement in Animal Science

Jessica Leigh Hudspeth, Roaring River — Outstanding Student in Animal Science-Poultry Management

Daniel T. Mathis, Roaring River — Academic Achievement in Animal Science-Poultry Management

Andrew Blake Johnson, Mocksville — Outstanding Student in Applied Engineering Technology, Specialty in CNC Machining Engineering Technology

Garrad Ross Williams, North Wilkesboro — Academic Achievement in Applied Engineering Technology, Specialty in CNC Machining Engineering Technology

Kelly R. Hamby, Ferguson — Outstanding Student in Applied Engineering Technology, Specialty in Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology

Tate James Foster, Hays — Outstanding Student in Applied Engineering Technology, Specialty in Industrial Systems Technology

Joseph Alexander Lacroix, Jefferson — Outstanding Student in Applied Engineering Technology, Specialty in Machining & Maintenance Technology

Joshua N. Holmes, Wilkesboro — Outstanding Student in Applied Engineering Technology- Specialty in Robotics, Automation & Mechatronics

Brian Douglas Tyler, Wilkesboro — Outstanding Student in Architectural Technology

Saylar Victoria Wyatt, West Jefferson — Academic Achievement in Architectural Technology

Jason Lee Clarke, McGrady — Outstanding Student in Automotive Systems Technology

Joseph Daniel Cartner, Mocksville — Academic Achievement in Automotive Systems Technology

Amber C. Lusk, Ferguson — Outstanding Student in Collision & Refinishing Technology

Colt Lane Cline, Hiddenite — Academic Achievement in Collision & Refinishing Technology

Will Dane Watts, Taylorsville — Outstanding Student, Building Construction Technology

Clint Parker Jones, Boomer — Outstanding Student in Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology

Morgan Blevins, Statesville — Outstanding Student in Horticulture Science Technology

Benton Isaacs, Purlear — Academic Achievement in Horticulture Science Technology

Aaron Haymore, North Wilkesboro — Outstanding Student in Welding Technology

Thomas Kyle Watts, Millers Creek — Outstanding Achievement in Welding Technology

CLUB LEADERSHIP AWARDS

Each club advisor may recognize two students during the Student Awards Program. Award titles vary by club and are determined by the club advisor. Club awards often reflect the service, dedication, and club values that students demonstrate as a club member.

Animal Science Club

Tanya M. Fox, Hiddenite — Outstanding Club Leadership

Architectural Technology Club

Brian Douglas Tyler, Wilkesboro — Club Leader-President

Autobody Club

Jerry K. Moretz, Boone — Outstanding Club Member

Automotive Systems Technology Club

Julian Castillo, Sparta — Outstanding Leadership

Diesel Club

Dustin Lee Canter, Boone — Outstanding Club Member

Horticulture Club

Sierra Hall, Hiddenite — Outstanding Officer in Horticulture Club

Respiratory Therapy Association Club

Kristen Burwell Hubbard, Statesville — Outstanding Leadership

Rotaract Club – Wilkes

Yesenia Lara, North Wilkesboro — Outstanding Club Leadership

SOBiE

Zackary Wagoner, McGrady — Outstanding Club Leadership

Student Government Association

Cody Call, North Wilkesboro — Superior Presidential Leadership within the SGA

Student Nurses Club, 1st Year

Kathryn E. Parsons, Purlear — Outstanding Club Member

Student Nurses Club, 2nd Year

Ashleigh M. Pack, North Wilkesboro — Outstanding Club Member

Welding Club

Samuel J. Cockerham, Sparta — Outstanding Club Member

“While we had to change our awards program to a virtual event this year due to COVID-19, we still were able to celebrate some amazing students who inspire us every day here at Wilkes Community College,” said Dr. Jeff Cox, president of Wilkes Community College. “So many of our students have overcome almost insurmountable challenges to be here completing their education, building better lives for themselves and their families. I am proud of each one of them!”

Wilkes Community College, a member of the North Carolina Community College System, is a public, two-year, open-door institution serving the people of Wilkes, Ashe and Alleghany counties and beyond. Established in 1965, WCC continues to build on a strong history of meeting the educational needs and cultural interests of our students, community, and workforce. WCC prepares learners for success in a dynamic world.

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Tom Mayer is the executive editor of Mountain Times Publications, a group of five news newspapers, six websites and one monthly periodical in the High Country of North Carolina.

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