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Curriculum and Special Advisory Committees

Our community is what makes us.

Each year members of Virginia Highlands Community College's Curriculum Advisory and Special Advisory Committees make valuable contributions to decision-making processes that impact both the academic programs and non-academic services offered to residents of our region. Because of their professional and personal experiences, these members of our community are uniquely positioned to provide valuable insight about the occupational needs and employment opportunities that exist within the region we serve. 

As we strive to fulfill our mission of providing exceptional educational pathways to enrich lives and strengthen our communities, it is with the realization that representatives of business and industry, governmental entities, the arts, and the taxpaying public must have a voice. These committees provide a vital link between the College and the community, and help ensure that Virginia Highlands Community College continues to make quality higher education affordable and accessible throughout our region. For that reason, we sincerely appreciate those who have assisted us in the past and those now serving on our advisory committees. 


These committees have been organized to advise College representatives in areas of curriculum development and evaluation, program promotion, and community needs assessment. Curriculum advisory committees at VHCC are organized within general curricular clusters, and include members with broad-based knowledge and expertise within each cluster. Each committee is charged with advising the Vice President of Instruction and Student Services, the applicable Dean, and other College officials concerning the appropriate course and curricular offerings in the area.

At present, the College’s curriculum advisory committees are organized as follows:

School of Arts and Sciences

  • Chemistry & Pharmacy
  • Computer Science
  • Criminal Justice
  • Education
  • General Studies/Dual Enrollment
  • Human Services
  • Liberal Arts
  • Mathematics & Engineering
  • Social Science

School of Biological and Health Sciences

  • Biological Sciences
  • Health Sciences
  • Medical Assisting
  • Nursing

School of Business and Industry

  • Business
  • Diesel
  • Electrical, Energy, and Electro-Mechanical
  • Horticulture and Natural Sciences
  • Information Technology
  • Medical Coding and Billing
  • Precision Machining
  • Welding

These committees have been organized to advise College representatives in several areas of interest. Generally, they represent non-curricular areas of the College, and are especially concerned with the ways in which these areas serve the total community. At present, the College’s special advisory committees are organized as follows:

Arts Array Advisory Committee

This committee is charged with advising the Vice President of Instruction and Student Services and the Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, regarding matters pertaining to VHCC’s curricular and non-curricular programs and offerings in theatre, music, films, literature, and visual arts.

Library and Instructional Services Advisory Committee

This committee is charged with advising the Vice President of Instruction and Student Services and the Coordinator of Library and Instructional Services regarding all program areas included within the College’s Division of Library and Instructional Services.


Advisory committees are a means for providing continued communication between VHCC and the various communities it serves. Once identified, the names of prospective members are recommended by the Program Chair to the Vice President of Instruction and Student Services, and then forwarded to the Office of the President. The President sends recommendations to the VHCC Board, which makes the final appointments to all advisory committees.

Members are appointed based on:

  • Experience;
  • Adequate time;
  • Civic responsibility.

Efforts are made to ensure that the three political jurisdictions that comprise the VHCC service region - the city of Bristol, Virginia, Washington County, and the western portion of Smyth County - are represented on each advisory committee. Varying levels and types of expertise are sought and, in the case of curricular advisory committees, efforts are made to include current and former students. 

Members are appointed for a three-year term, effective September 1. Members may not be appointed for more than two consecutive terms unless their membership on the committee is essential. 

Members serve in an advisory capacity and have no administrative or legislative authority.

Selection and Duties of Officers:

Each committee shall choose a Chair and Vice Chair from its lay membership at the first meeting of each academic year. The secretary of each committee will be appointed by the College from the appropriate instructional or service area. 

Duties of Chair:

  • Call the meetings of the committee;
  • Preside at all meetings;
  • Plan, with the help of the secretary, the meeting agenda;
  • Set the tone of the meeting;
  • Appoint subcommittees as needed to perform specific committee functions;
  • Represent the committee when appropriate.

Duties of Vice Chair:

  • Preside in the absence of the chair; 
  • Fulfill any other duties designated by the chair.

Duties of Secretary:

  • Prepare and mail all announcements, minutes, and other information to all committee members, college administrators, and others who need to be informed of the committee activities;
  • Assist the chair in establishing the agenda for the meeting;
  • Keep an active and up-to-date list of committee members;
  • Prepare all materials for distribution to committee members prior to the meetings;
  • Coordinate and communicate the business of the committee with appropriate personnel of the College. 

Specific Functions of Curriculum Advisory Committees

  • To assist in the flow of information between the College and community groups;
  • To assist in designing courses and curricula by identifying the special skills, essential information and knowledge required;
  • To recommend members of the community as potential instructors;
  • To assist in evaluating the College's curricula and making suggestions for improvements;
  • To assist graduates in finding internships and jobs;
  • To keep the College informed of changes in the labor market;
  • To make suggestions for informing the community of the College's curricular offerings;
  • To assess curricular needs of the community; and
  • To provide other assistance as requested by the College. 

Interested in serving on a committee? Please complete the follow request form: 

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