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Education

  • Mother, son share story of teenage alcoholism

    Cold sweats, shakes and restless nights were normal for Toren Volkmann. Total memory lapses were common in his life. 

    Alcohol controlled his life for years.

    Volkmann, a Washington state native, started drinking in middle school and soon turned into an alcoholic. After years of binge drinking, sickness and a host of unfavorable consequences, he turned his life around.

    Now he and his mother, Chris, travel the country telling their story of struggle, confusion, hope and perseverance.

  • Sanders, Penuel join USCL faculty

    Alexis Sanders is adjusting to life in the South, while Dr. Suzanne Penuel looks to become even more active in the local community.

    Sanders and Penuel are the two newest full-time faculty members at the University of South Carolina at Lancaster. The Lancaster News caught up with both of them recently to see how things have been going so far this semester.

    Alexis Sanders  

  • Teens sharpen their oratorical skills

    INDIAN LAND – The fifth-annual Oratorical Expose, sponsored by the Lancaster District of the AME Zion Church, took place Sept. 24 at El Bethel AME Zion Church in Indian Land.

    The event, held each fall, gives local teens a chance to sharpen their public-speaking skills.

    Nearly 20 teens competed in this year’s contest.

    Each of the 25 churches in the district was asked to spearhead a training forum and pick a student to represent the church.

  • Beckham is top new teacher

    Josh Beckham, a second-year teacher at South Middle School, says the classroom is where he belongs.

    Beckham worked for Founders Federal Credit Union as a sales representative after graduating college. Though the job allowed him to travel and meet people daily, he said he knew God was steering him in another direction.

    So the Lancaster native started an alternative certification and began teaching history at South Middle last year. His first year went so well, the Lancaster County School District honored him in a big way.

  • Initiative brings biomedical course to ILHS

    INDIAN LAND – A person is on the ground dead, and it’s your job to figure out how long the body has been there and what lead to the death.

    What are all the parts of the digestive system and what should you be aware of when treating a diabetic patient?

    The answers to those inquiries and more are being unraveled this semester in Jill Haun’s classroom at Indian Land High School.

  • Teacher to bring history to life with $2,000 grant

    A local educator has been recognized with a national award for bringing innovative ideas to the classroom.

    Hope Figuero, a fourth-grade teacher at Erwin Elementary School, is one of 100 winners of the 2009 Unsung Heroes award program sponsored by financial institution ING.

    ING recognized those teachers for developing innovative programs and incorporating them into lessons.

    Figuero, who also received a $2,000 grant, was presented her award earlier this month.

  • Students may now apply for Leroy Springs loans

    Leroy Springs Student Loans will be available beginning Nov. 1 for students seeking assistance for college costs for the spring semester.  

    The deadline for receipt of applications is Dec. 1.

    The Springs Close Foundation Inc. has made 147 interest-free loans so far this year to college students who live in Lancaster County and Chester and Fort Mill.  

    Funds advanced will total $453,616 for an average of $3,086 per student. Included in these figures are loans made to students attending York Technical College for an average of $1,500 per student.

  • Southside Literacy expands

    The American Red Cross is urging individuals to donate blood as soon as possible.  

    The blood supply has dropped critically low throughout the Southeast, said Joyce Brendel, interim chief executive officer of American Red Cross Carolinas Blood Services Region.

    Brendel said while all blood types are needed, there is a critical need for types O negative, B negative and A negative.

    In the summer, blood shortages often occur because individual donations decrease, along with the number of organizations that sponsor blood drives.

  • Southside Literacy expands after move

    On any given day, you’ll see a number of different activities going on at the Preston Blackmon Family Success & Career Center.

    In one room, several people work on computer-based programs in preparation to earn their GED (general educational development).

    In a second room, three school-age children discuss their multiplication tables, while in another area, a mother reads a bilingual children’s book with her two daughters.

    Here, the name of the game is self-betterment.

  • Learning Institute closes its doors

    Jan Clark Bragg’s addiction to prescription pain killers got so bad that she cashed in her 401(k) to buy more and more pills.

    She quit her job, left her husband and spent months “not doing anything,” except feeding her drug habit. Then she reached rock bottom.

    “It was awful,” Bragg said.

    Shortly afterward, one of Bragg’s friends told her about the Learning Institute for Tomorrow, or LIFT.

    The intent, though, was for Bragg to help out LIFT with marketing and advertising.