Big Sandy Community and Technical College President and CEO Dr. George D. Edwards and his wife, Dr. Joyce Edwards, posed with a group of former Honors Program students following the annual Alumni Homecoming celebration on Friday, September 19 on the Prestonsburg campus of BSCTC.  Shown are:  Weston Campbell, Brittany Campbell, Chelsea Lafferty, Dr. George D. Edwards, Dr. Joyce Edwards, Grondall Potter, Tiffany Ratliff and Bryanna Marshall.

Big Sandy Community and Technical College (BSCTC) held its annual Alumni Homecoming on Friday, September 19 on its Prestonsburg campus.

The celebration recognized alumni from BSCTC, Prestonsburg Community College and Mayo Technical College.

It is always wonderful to reconnect with our alumni and share the memories of how postsecondary education has changed their lives, said Dr. George D. Edwards, president and CEO of BSCTC.

Dr. Edwards, who will retire next year, got a bit of surprise when several former students from the Honors Program took to the stage to talk about his influence on their life.

When I came to school at Big Sandy, I wasnt sure if I was ready for college, said Grondall Potter, a 2011 BSCTC graduate from Elkhorn City. The Honors Program taught me how to be a leader. Dr. Edwards displayed all the characters of a leader, but he encouraged us to take our own path to leadership. Dr. Edwards made us realize that we could find leadership within ourselves and go out and make a difference.

The Honors Program was established in 2005 by Dr. Edwards to provide students in the colleges service area the opportunity to explore their individual possibilities and to reach their potential both individually and as human beings in society.

Potter will graduate in May from the University of Kentucky with a Bachelor of Arts in Geology. He is exploring opportunities to attend graduate school.

Its so worth it to come here, said Potter. The first few years of college is about learning what you want to do. The people here at Big Sandy were so encouraging and gave us different ways of looking at things. They opened the doors of the world to me right here at home.

Tiffany Ratliff, of Staffordsville, graduated from BSCTC in 2008 with an Associate in Arts and Associate in Science degrees. She currently attends the Bill Gatton School of Pharmacy at East Tennessee State University.

The Honors Program allowed me to broaden my knowledge intellectually and personally, said Ratliff. Im so glad I made the decision to come here. I was able to develop leadership skills that have been very beneficial in my pursuit of my doctorate degree.

Ratliff also benefited from the BSCTC transfer scholarship, which allowed her to earn her undergraduate degree from Morehead State University at the KCTCS tuition rate.

I was essentially able to graduate with no debt, she said. That was a huge relief, and it made pharmacy school an option.

The Alumni Homecoming celebration included performances by employees Laura Ford Hall and Janie Beverley and the Big Sandy Singers and Band.

While we will be moving to Virginia, the communities within our service area will always hold a special place in our hearts and well always consider this home as well, said Dr. Edwards.

To learn more about the BSCTC Alumni Association, contact Leslie Bays at (606) 886-7391 or email