Chipola College news


Chipola College sophomore Drake Miller was selected as the Florida College System Activities Association Theatre Division Student of the Month for February 2021.

Miller is enrolled in the Theatre and Entertainment Technology AS program and is an integral part of the theatre tech program at Chipola College.

“Drake is usually the first student to volunteer for an assignment – no matter how large or how small. He is adept at stage carpentry, lighting, and sound engineering. His energetic positive attitude has been much appreciated especially in these last few months,” Chipola Director of Fine Arts Evelyn Ward said.  “Drake is diligent in his assignments and has an eye for detail. He is reliable, polite, and respectful of his fellow students and directors.”

Like so many theatres across the country, the Covid-19 pandemic has forced the Center for the Arts to go dark. Even though the college has not had a live production since February 2020, the tech students have been busy cleaning and organizing the space, repairing props and equipment, building sets for future productions, and focusing on their coursework projects to increase their skills and build their portfolios. Miller and his fellow students have been eager to work and have maintained an upbeat attitude in spite of the closures, rescheduling, and increased safety protocols.

In addition to being a student, Miller is a member of the 186 Engineer Company of the Alabama National Guard located in Dothan, AL. He was called into duty this January and traveled to Washington, D.C. for the inauguration of our 46th President, Joe Biden. “Amidst the turmoil of that time, we were proud to know one of our students was protecting our country and protecting our presidency,” Chipola Director of Technical Theatre Connie Smith said.  “While stationed in D.C., Miller remained dedicated to his coursework. He used any spare time afforded him to do his assignments and participate in his classes virtually. Drake is a dynamic leader in our program and we are proud that he is a leader in our community and our country as well. He sets an excellent example for our students and even his faculty, of what it means to serve with honor and humility.”


Costume Designer Kenan Burchette recently offered a workshop to Chipola College Technical Theatre students on costume creation.

Here, Burchette shows Chipola students (L-R) Lucille Sloan, Burchette, Anzli Laurel and James Kidd how to properly thread a sewing machine.

Burchette spoke to the TPA 1274 Stage Properties class on “Sewing Techniques for Stage Properties”.  He introduced students to the various sewing machines and taught basic sewing techniques. Burchette is currently employed as a Costume Ship Lead for Norwegian Cruise Line where he manages half of the Norwegian fleet entertainment costumes and works with Wardrobe Supervisors in the preparation of costumes before sending them to the ships.  He is tasked with maintaining the integrity of each design and the consistency of the costumes for every show and every time they are performed. Burchette earned his MFA in Costume Design at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.


Chipola College will celebrate graduation this year with an in-person commencement ceremony, Thursday, May 6, at 7 p.m., in the Prough Center for the Arts.

Only graduating students who sign up for commencement will attend.  Chipola trustees, administrators and faculty also will attend. Family and friends are invited to watch the live webcast as well as a video recording with a link available at

The ceremony will include the traditional student processional with faculty marshals, a commencement speaker, the presentation of candidates and conferring of degrees.  A professional will photograph each graduate as they cross the stage in cap and gown with their diploma.

Graduates and employees will be required to wear masks and to follow social-distancing guidelines.  College dignitaries will sit on stage.  Students will sit in the main level of the Center.  Chipola faculty, other professionals and administrators will not march or wear regalia but are invited to attend and to sit in the balcony.

Graduates must complete a Commencement Ceremony Reservation in order to participate in the ceremony. Sign up is in the Chipola Admissions Office.

For information, visit or phone 850-718-2211.


MARIANNA—The Apalachee Correctional Institution (ACI) will host a one-day hiring event for Correctional Officers and Trainees, Wednesday, March 3, from 8:30 a.m. to noon, in the Chipola College Public Service Building.

Interested applicants must be a U.S. Citizen, at least 18 years old, have no felony convictions, eligible to own/possess a firearm, have a valid driver’s license, and hold a high school diploma or GED.

Applicants should also bring the following documents: driver’s license, social security card, birth certificate, high school diploma or equivalent, and a military dd-214. Applicants will take the CJBAT Test on the same day.

New hires have the potential to earn an annual salary of $33,500, receive on-the-job paid training, earn tuition-free college (6 hours/semester) and receive single/family health insurance coverage.

For more information or for those unable to attend, contact Morgan Daniels at 850-718-2212.


MARIANNA—Registration for Spring Term ‘C’ classes at Chipola College is March 1-5.  Classes begin March 8 with late registration through March 9.

Currently enrolled students may add Term C classes to their schedule. New students are encouraged to make application to the college and register as soon as possible. Face-to-face, online and Zoom classes are offered in several areas.

Term C courses include:

Face-to-Face Courses: (ENL 2022) Survey of English Literature II, (ETD 2551) Cad Civil, (GEB 4940) Business Internship, (HLP 1081) Concepts of Life Fitness, (MVV 1111) Class Voice, (RED 3311) Teaching Reading Intermediate Grade, (RED 4519) Diagnos/Instruc Interventions Read, (SLS 1401) Career & Life Planning, (SLS 2264) SGA Leadership Development IV, (SPN 1120) Elementary Spanish I, and (TPA 2077) Introduction to Scene Painting.

Online Courses: (AMH 2010) American History To 1865, (AST 1002) General Astronomy, (CGS 1060) Introduction to Microcomputer Use, (EDF 1005) Intro to the Teaching Profession, (ENC 1101) English Composition I, (MUL 2010) Music Appreciation, (PSY 2012) General Psychology, (RED 3311) Teaching Reading Intermediate Grade, (RED 3360) Teaching Reading Middle/Sec Schools, (RED 4519) Diagnos/Instruc Interventions Read, (SLS 1101) Orientation, (THE 1000) Theatre Appreciation, (TSL 4081) TESOL Issues & Practices

Zoom Courses: (ETD 2551) Cad Civil, and (SPC 2608) Effective Public Speaking.

Combination Courses: (AMH 2020) American History Since 1865, (AMH 2020) American History Since 1865.

Chipola’s open-door policy guarantees acceptance to any student with a standard high school diploma or its equivalent.

Prospective students should complete a college application online at Students also must provide an official high school and college transcript. Students should visit an academic advisor in the Student Services building to register.

For information about enrolling at Chipola, call the Admission and Records office at 850-718-2311, or visit

Veterans Opportunity

Chipola College students, staff, and faculty veterans and friends of veterans are invited to the March 9th meeting at the American Legion in Marianna, FL, for a dinner at 6:00 pm. At the meeting, local leaders will share opportunities to volunteer and participate in activities within Jackson County. The American Legion Post 100 is located West on Highway 90 from Marianna and is West of the National Guard Armory and the Ag. Center. Veterans and guests are asked to wear masks and maintain responsible / safe activities. For additional information, please feel free to contact Dr. Bouvin at 850-718-2380 or


MARIANNA—Dozens of volunteers and officials attended a ground-breaking ceremony Feb. 25 for the Chipola Street Development in Marianna.

The project is a collaboration between the Auburn University Rural Studio and the Chipola College Building Construction program. Together, these partners are working with the Chipola Area Habitat for Humanity to provide four small, efficient homes for local community members.

Chipola College President, Dr. Sarah Clemmons, said, “Chipola is proud to join forces with Auburn and Habitat to help build safe, affordable homes for four local families. I want Darwin Gilmore, Chipola’s Dean of Workforce and Economic Development, and Scott Phelps, our building construction technology instructor, for leading our construction students in this project. Our students are getting on-site training in construction, but they’re also participating in service learning which may be even more important.”

The building site is located at 2836 Chipola Street, Marianna, FL 32446. Learn more at,, and


Students in the Chipola College Automotive Technology class have collected nearly 500 packages of Ramen noodles for Jackson County Backpack for Kids. Join Chipola for the Ramen Noodle Roundup 2nd Annual Car Show, Saturday, Feb. 27, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Citizens Lodge Park in Marianna.

The car show entry fee is cash donation or ramen noodles. Trophies will be awarded in the following categories: Best Car Pre-70s, Best Truck Pre-70s, Best Car 71 or Later, Best Motorcycle, Best Off-Road, Best Kids Car and People’s Choice. Meet John Gardner, the host of Tech Garage between 10-11 a.m.

For more information, contact Lorrie Webb at 850-557-2085.