June 28, 2017

New College Institute (NCI) announced new programs as part of an expanded partnership with James Madison University (JMU). Programs will be concentrated in the fields of engineering and advanced manufacturing; cybersecurity and technology; and healthcare.


Specifically, these programs include a Bachelor in Integrated Science and Technology, Bachelor of Individualized Study degree with a concentration in Advanced Manufacturing, and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. In addition to these degree programs, the partnership with JMU will also include non-credit trainings in cybersecurity, advanced manufacturing, and engineering; a boot camp for educators that covers the basics of Cyber Defense; graduate certificates in Cyber Intelligence, and professional development in a variety of healthcare fields. These new programs are coming in addition to an existing JMU Educational Leadership certificate program already being offered at NCI.


“This partnership with JMU represents NCI’s new direction, which seeks to be responsive to the needs of existing and future industries within our region,” said Dr. Leanna Blevins, Executive Director of NCI.


With this new partnership, students can complete the first two years of their bachelor’s degree at a community college like Patrick Henry Community College and then finish the third and fourth years of the program through JMU courses offered locally at NCI.


State Sen. Bill Stanley, chairman of the NCI board, called the agreement “a historic moment. What we’ve been working on has come to fruition.”

Melissa Lubin, dean of outreach and engagement at James Madison University, said that JMU already has had some very successful partnerships with NCI and she is excited about prospects of doing more to provide educational opportunities on many levels – including noncredit offerings, degree programs, professional development and more – to provide education that will keep people in the area.

This announcement came as part of the Virginia House Appropriations Committee tour of higher education centers in Southside Virginia. This committee is composed of 22 members from the Virginia House of Delegates as appointed by the Speaker of the House. This committee is responsible for passing appropriation bills along with the Senate Finance Committee, which in effect, determines the state budget.


During their visit, the legislative members of the committee toured the facilities, including the Martin-Lacy Lecture Hall, various classrooms, and the Advanced Manufacturing Center. The committee members also heard updates on existing programs, new developments, and partnerships being forged with various state universities and agencies.  


"This is the first time that the House Appropriations Committee has visited Martinsville and Henry County in my 16 years in the General Assembly. As a NCI board member I was excited to show the members of the House money committee how we are helping to bring prosperity back to our area,” shared Delegate Danny Marshall, House of Delegates 14th District.


“It was a pleasure to welcome my colleagues from the House of Delegates to Martinsville-Henry County and particularly to NCI. Along with the other members of the NCI Board of Directors, I was excited to share updates on new services that NCI will be providing in order to meet the needs of employers and students,” added Delegate Les Adams, House of Delegates 16th District.


“In addition to our new partnership with JMU, NCI has many other innovative programs on the horizon that will meet educational and workforce needs within the Commonwealth, and particularly within Southside. We were honored to meet with the House Appropriations Committee and to talk with legislators from around the Commonwealth about these new programs and the positive momentum we are building here at NCI,” said Dr. Leanna Blevins, Executive Director of NCI.  


Those interested in enrolling or inquiring more information about programs offered at NCI should call (276) 403-5610.