NRCC nominations for 2021 PTK All-Virginia Academic Team

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Four New River Community College (NRCC) students have been nominated to the Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) 2021 All-Virginia Academic team. The NRCC students who received the honor include Grace Ankeney, Elana Dao, Michael Johnson, and Eric Pratt; these four students will be recognized at a virtual All-Virginia Academic Team awards event on April 21, 2021. The virtual event will be in lieu of the awards luncheon that is normally held in Richmond. Each student will receive a medallion and certificate in recognition of this honor. From the group of Virginia Community College System students recognized, 10 will be eligible for national awards.

Grace Ankeney

Ankeney, of Blacksburg, is currently working on completion of general studies and liberal arts associate degrees. After NRCC, she plans to pursue a four-year degree and study psychology before attending law school and becoming a human rights attorney. She is interested in starting an environmental club at NRCC.

“I had heard great things about NRCC from people I knew in Blacksburg. Upon visiting the school, I was struck by how caring and involved the faculty were,” said Ankeney. “I immediately knew NRCC was a place that would equip me for the future and advance my educational goals.”

Elana Dao

Dao lives in Pearisburg and is working on an associate degree in business management and a career studies certificate in human resource practices. She plans to continue living in Giles County after graduation and hopes to one day open her own salon.

She serves her community by volunteering at a local animal shelter and helping with Operation Christmas Child by Samaritan’s Purse. Dao is also an NRCC Access to Community College Education (ACCE) student; ACCE provides free tuition to NRCC in exchange for local community service. Dao chose to attend NRCC because of the local campus access and because her mother and brother also attended NRCC.

Eric Pratt
Eric Pratt

Pratt lives in Draper and is in the engineering associate degree program at NRCC. After completing his degree at NRCC, he plans to transfer to Virginia Tech to study materials science and engineering with hopes of working with carbon-based materials and additive manufacturing.

“I chose NRCC because it is a great opportunity to receive an equal or better education at a far better price, and the small class size allows for more personal education and contact with educators and staff,” said Pratt.

Michael Johnson
Michael Johnson

Johnson is studying instrumentation and control automation technology, electrical engineering technology, and electronics technology. He lives in Radford and plans to remain in his community after completing his degrees. He hopes to work with programmable logic controllers and robotics technologies.

“I chose NRCC specifically for the instrumentation and control automation program, of which NRCC has one of the best around,” said Johnson.

PTK is an international honor society of two-year colleges and academic programs, particularly state colleges and community colleges, and the organization’s mission is to recognize academic achievement of college students and to provide opportunities for them to grow as scholars and leaders.

To become a member of the Omega Eta chapter of PTK at NRCC, students must currently be enrolled at NRCC, have a minimum 3.2 cumulative grade point average, and completed at least 12 non-developmental credits at NRCC. For more information on PTK at NRCC, contact faculty sponsors Brian Clark at or Ellen Oliver at