Staff Contact:

Andrea J. Burney, APR

Director of  Public Relations



Remus Shelton, Jr.


Danville Community College student Remus Shelton, Jr., of Blairs, says he always enjoyed working on home renovation projects. He even thought that someday he’d like to own a home remodeling business. However, he didn’t think the opportunity would come so quickly because he had a comfortable job, was earning a good salary, and never thought about attending college.

That all changed in 2008 when he learned that he would be losing his job at Dan River, Inc. He had worked there for 29 years. The realization hit him that now he would have to start over in another career.

“I had a very good job at Dan River. I was an inventory clerk and a sample clerk,? Shelton, 47, says. “I was one of the last employees to be let go. I had no idea of what I was going to do next.?

Shelton says his first thought was to assist his uncle in his construction business. He knew it would be a change from what he was used to doing, especially working in the extreme heat and extreme cold weather. Continuing his education was not among his plans until he met Threllis Hall, a case manager with Virginia’s Workforce Career Center.

“I met with her for over an hour with her trying to convince me to go to college. I had never thought about it, but she convinced me I could do it,? he says. “It’s because of her that I am here (at DCC).?

Several months later, he enrolled in DCC’s Building Trades Technology program. It was a new experience with him having to juggle class work and family responsibilities. He is the son of Raymond and Mae Emma Shelton, and is married to Jacqueline Shelton. He has a son, Travis, and daughter, Shikela, all of whom have encouraged him to stay focused on his higher education goals. In addition to family responsibilities, he also is active in the community serving in a variety of capacities, including Assistant Treasurer, Usher and Van Driver at White Rock Baptist Church.

“Returning to school takes a lot of sacrifice. You must be focused and committed to it,? Shelton says. “At first, it was hard to get back in the habit of studying, but it paid off.?

He adds that his fears about returning to school and class work loads were eased because of the helpfulness of college personnel, and through a lot of prayers.

“Everyone was great! The people here at DCC worked with me in every way. From the Dean (of the Division of Business and Engineering Technologies) Dr. (Ed) White, and Joyce (Burton, (Administrative and Office Specialist III) to all of the professors, they were willing to help us. I also can’t forget the students because everyone was willing to help each other.?

As a part of the Building Trades Technology program, students construct various projects on campus and in the community. They even worked on several Habitat for Humanity houses. The one-year Certificate program is designed to provide skills in entry-level construction trades. Students obtain skills in basic carpentry, block and brick laying, heating and air conditioning, and electrical systems.

“Sometimes, it was hot, grueling work, but we got hands on experience in completing simple projects,? Shelton notes.

He completed his studies in July 2010, and earned a Certificate. He was rewarded for his achievements at DCC with an Alliance For Excellence Academic Excellence Award. Now he would like to try his hand in the field – assisting his uncle or other companies in the construction industry. Eventually, he would like to seek his Class “A? license.

“I would encourage everyone who finds himself or herself without a job to take a look at DCC. The people here are excellent. If you have the commitment, you can be successful and change careers. You can make it,? Shelton adds.

For more information about the Building Trades Technology program, contact Del Pool, Instructor of Building Trades, at 434.797.8423, or click here.


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