From the Panola County Sheriff's Department:
This is an updated missing person poster for Lauren Thompson. Her family has now posted a $5,000 reward for information leading to the discovery of Lauren Thompson. No new information has been obtained in the past few weeks. We continue to follow-up on this case.
Evan Yount of Jacksonville has attained the American Degree with the National FFA Organization, formerly Future Farmers of America. Yount graduated from Panola College with an associate degree in December 2018 and is now a junior at Texas Tech University in Lubbock.
While at Panola College, Yount was a leader in the National Collegiate FFA program, worked on The Pony Express, made the Dean's List, and received an Academic Excellence award in agriculture studies. He served as staff photographer for the Panola College Rodeo, and received an internship to work with the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo in March 2019.
With 669,989 members and chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, the National FFA Organization is the largest student led organization. The group's mission statement in the United States is to "make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth, career success through agricultural education."
The National FFA honors members through various levels of degrees, with the American level being the highest, involving academic achievement, time spent outside of class activities, money invested in supervised agricultural experience (SAE), profit received, community service, and other activities. Only two percent of FFA members achieve the American level.
Yount will be recognized for his achievement at the National FFA Convention, October 30 through November 2 in Indianapolis, Indiana.
"My goal is to impact students' lives, impact the consumer through proper education of the agricultural industry starting with the Texas Legislature. I plan to begin my career as a lobbyist and eventually work my way into running for the Commissioner of Agriculture for the State of Texas," Yount said.
"I owe much of this achievement to my time at Panola, where I was able to accomplish a few more steps I needed to receive this award. I would not have such opportunities or faculty to push me to this goal at most universities. I believe whole heartedly that my years at a junior college, most specifically, Panola College, made the difference of whether or not I was eligible to receive my American Degree."
Pictured is Evan Yount.
Panola College will host information sessions to discuss the new Certified Nurse Aide Academy Elite, which helps students earn their Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) for FREE. The information sessions will take place on Tuesday, August 27th at 10 am at the Panola College Marshall Center in Marshall, TX and again at 5 pm at the Shelby College Center in Center, TX. The sessions will talk about the eligibility to participate in the new CNA Academy Elite and what it will provide for students who participate.
The Panola College Foundation presented 24 grants totaling more than $58,000 to faculty and staff at Panola College to support various programs and initiatives. Dr. John Ray, Chair of the Panola College Foundation, announced the recipients of the 2019 faculty and staff grants in a faculty and staff meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 14.
"We appreciate the community and the College support of the Panola College Foundation," said Dr. Ray as he addressed the faculty and staff. "We were able to award almost $10,000 more than last year due to your support." Dr. Ray then called the grant recipients forward to accept their award.
This year's grant recipients include:
•A mobile device research lab for students and employees for IT Services.
•A Whirlpool table and two TheraGun massage guns for the Kinesiology department.
•15 Wi-Fi hotspots and two router subscriptions shared between all three campuses for the M.P. Baker Library.
•Two iPads and stands for directory use at the M.P. Baker Library.
•GED practice exams to increase student retention and success in the AEL program.
•Yoga mats, blocks, resistance bands, Zumba toning sticks and DVDs for course in Shelby County.
•A museum field trip in the fall and spring for the Art and Humanities Department.
•A trip to a Dallas Symphony concert for the Choral Department.
•Five new lighting instruments for the auditorium and studio for Theatre.
•A video camera to record instrumental and vocal music performances.
•A medical lift chair for CNA courses.
•Two iPads for instructors in the EMT program.
•SIMTICS Simulation Modules for the Medical Assistant program.
•Four anatomical muscular models for the Occupational Therapy Assistant program.
•Four Littmann teaching stethoscopes for the Nursing program.
•Egg hunt prizes to increase student engagement/recruiting within Residence Life.
•Financial support for the Trailblazer Retreat, a student leadership/engagement retreat through student services.
•A satellite supply store for student course supplies in Shelby County.
•A Cosmetology Department grant for the Armstrong McCall World's Fair Trade Show.
•Various HVAC and electrical tools for the School of Energy.
•Two Cutaway Briggs and Stratton small engines for the small engines lab.
•Funding to support the cost of a truck to pull a mobile lab for the School of Energy.
Information about how to make a gift to the Panola College Foundation is available online at www.panola.edu/panola-foundation, or by calling 903-693-2029.
Photo Attached (L to R): Recipients: Rebekah Burkhalter, Laura Wood, Jody Harris, Betty Gruber, Brian Naples, Allen West, Cancee Lester, Cristie Ferguson, Michael Pace, Shay Joines, Natalie Oswalt, Amanda Clements, Bobbie Smith, Cheri Lambert, Sandra Bauer, Ronald Morton, Karen King, Dwaine Hubbard, Katy Chance, Rebecca Courtney, Lynn Hanson, Whitney McBee, Jacky Andreatta, Annissa Jackson
Back Row, Left to right:
Jeff Jones, Police Chief
Jo Lynn Field, Success Coordinator, Associate Degree Nursing
Chris Collins, Professor of English/Preparatory Studies
Nicole Thorn, Head Coach - Women's Volleyball/Instructor of Kinesiology
Grant Freels, Assistant Coach - Men's Baseball
Aaron Smith, Head Coach - Men's Basketball/Professor of Kinesiology
Dr. Anthony Edwards, Professor of Biology
Brad Adkins, Instructor of Welding
G. Todd Shelton, Assistant Coach - Men's Basketball
Front Row, Left to right:
Brooke Works, Receptionist/Secretary - Marshall College Center
Kristy Parker, Instructor of Medical Assisting
Rocky Hayden, Maintenance Worker
Texas Reardon, Educational Technology Coordinator & Webmaster
Carol Brightwell, Accounts Payable Specialist
Macy Cherry, Assistant Coach - Women's Volleyball
Whitney Sienko, Professor of Accounting
Haylie Amison, Professor of Humanities/English
Rebecca Morris, Professor of Education
Leading the Panola College Women's Basketball team for the 2019-2020 season will be Alex Furr, the 2018 Women's Basketball Coaches Association Assistant Coach of the Year. Furr, an East Texas native, has spent the past four years at New Mexico Junior College, working as assistant coach and recruiting coordinator.
A 2010 graduate of Athens High School, Furr earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Fresno State University in Fresno, Calif., in 2014, and her Master of Science in sports psychology from Fresno State in 2016.
During her time at Fresno State, Furr played for three head coaches, earning the coveted Iron Bulldog Award for the Fresno State Strength and Conditioning Program. She also won the Paul Schechter Courage Award, presented annually to student-athletes who have overcome a physical challenge to become a champion. While at Fresno State, she earned a spot in the Top 10 All-Time in "three pointers made" and "career free throws percentage."
Furr comes to Panola from New Mexico Junior College where she worked with the #1 Pre-Season NCJAA team in the nation. The team had the best finish in school history, as national runner up to the NJCAA tournament.
While playing at Athens High School, Furr was named the 2010 Texas Association of Basketball Coaches "Miss Texas" award, earned all-state recognition three years in a row, recorded 3.169 career points, made 337 total three-pointers, averaged 36 PPG as a senior player; averaged 25.7 PPG over her career; scored more than 40 points in 29 games, scored more than 50 points four times, and had a career high of 54 points in one game.
At New Mexico Junior College, Furr adjusted her approach from player to coach, sharing her knowledge and experience with her players. "There is no doubt in my mind that I have found what I have been waiting for," she said, when discussing her decision to take on the head coaching position at Panola College.
Don Clinton, Athletic Director and Vice President of Student Services, said he is excited to have Coach Furr join the Panola College coaching staff.
"She has an incredible basketball pedigree with her dad being a highly successful JUCO coach at TVCC," Clinton said. "She has grown up in the gym and has excelled as a player and a young coach. She has been deemed as one of the rising coaching stars in the country and was voted assistant coach of the year. She has only been coaching three years in college and has been around success continuously. We are excited for the energy and all of what she will bring to the program."
PHOTO CAPTION: Alex Furr has been named head coach of the Panola College Fillies Basketball Team.
A section of US 79 northeast of Carthage will receive a new riding surface and a change in traffic control this year according to plans approved in May by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT).
"We will be resurfacing a 9.1-mile section of the highway from Farm to Market Road 31 to the Louisiana State Line," said Ray Brady, area engineer for TxDOT in Marshall. "We will also be restriping the roadway to make it into a super two-lane highway to improve safety and traffic flow. This means one direction will two lanes of traffic for a distance while the opposing traffic will have one lane. The two will then switch, with one having a single traffic lane and the opposing traffic have two.
"There will also be a continuous left-turn lane between opposing traffic and will provide a safe location for motorists to sit while they wait for traffic to clear before making their turn," Brady said. "And left-turn lanes will be added to the intersection at State Line Road in Bethany."
Madden Contracting Company of Minden, La., was awarded the contract for the construction project with a bid of $4.6 million.
Work on the project should begin in July and take about four months to complete, Brady said.