The Phi Theta Kappa 2018 All-Virginia Academic team includes two New River Community College students. This spring, Virginia’s Community Colleges will recognize them when other team members from across the state gather in Richmond for an awards luncheon. From that group of about 70 students, ten will be eligible for national awards.
William McClellan, of Blacksburg, and Brooke Quesenberry, of Snowville, are New River’s representatives to the team.
McClellan, 21, is in his third semester at NRCC studying for an AA&S degree in science.
His educational quest has been somewhat individualistic. Leaving high school before graduating, he took a few years for self-study in various fields before earning a GED and enrolling in NRCC.
This fall he volunteered with a bi-partisan organization, the “Up To Us” movement. He made classroom presentations to engage peers on the issue of long-term national debt and the importance of his generation to secure the fiscal future of the country.
In his first year as a member of Phi Theta Kappa, the honors organization on campus, McClellan says he encourages conversation among friends to inspire them to view themselves capable of creating their own ideas. The study of philosophy and search for a wide understanding of the world are also among his interests.
McClellan plans to graduate from New River this May. He then plans to further his education to prepare for a career in biochemistry with particular interest in in-vitro food production.
He is the son of Rose Norris and Quintin McClellan, and he has a brother, Quintin (Champ.)
Brooke Quesenberry, 19, is in her first semester on campus; however, she transferred 25 college credits that she completed during high school. She is a 2017 graduate of Pulaski County High School. She plans to graduate from NRCC with an AA&S degree in education this May.
She says time management is something she has learned since she started NRCC this fall. Taking 16 credit hours at New River, she also works 22 hours as a cake decorator at Dublin’s WalMart and is a volunteer at Fairview United Methodist Church in Riner where she provides music in the form of singing and playing the piano for services.
She plans to study elementary education at Radford University next year. She says she decided upon elementary education partly because of the passion she witnessed from her teachers at Snowville Elementary School. They promoted her love of reading and got her excited about learning; she wants to pass that on to others.
She is the daughter of Michael and Jeannie Quesenberry. Her mother studied accounting at New River. Her grandparents are Alfred (Popeye) Quesenberry, of Hiwassee, and Earnest and Gracie Worrell, of Snowville. She also has a sister, Alyson.
Quesenberry says her parents and grandparents have been supportive of her education. She will be the first person in their family who will go on to a four-year college to earn a bachelor’s degree.