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WNCC Honored at Oct. 5 NCCA Conference

October 12, 2015

Three members of the Western Nebraska Community College family won awards at the 2015 Nebraska Community College Association (NCCA) conference on Oct. 5.

The conference, which was hosted by WNCC, honored standout members of colleges within the association with an awards dinner. Of the honorees were WNCC math instructor Manuel "Junior" Alvarez, Rich Stickney, a member of the WNCC Board of Governors, and WNCC alum Ryan Reiber.
Alvarez, an instructor at various levels for nearly 40 years, received the NCAA Faculty Award. "Mr. Alvarez has greatly assisted in the development of the math lab concept," said WNCC President Todd Holcomb. "On a regular basis, he has been instrumental in providing tutorial services in the math lab setting, as well as structuring the services that are provided in the lab.  His enthusiasm is infectious and where many students shy away from math, Mr. Alvarez brings many students to the mathematics program at WNCC."
Stickney was the recipient of the NCCA Governor's Award for his dedication to serving Nebraska schools in various roles since 2000. For over 15 years, Stickney has been a member of the Board of Governors for the Western Community College Area where he has served as president and vice president of the facilities corporation. "Rich has spent much of his life working as a volunteer in providing service to the community," said Holcomb. "He has been an active participant and completer in 'Leadership Box Butte' an active member of the FOE Order of Eagles; Veterans of Wars; American Legion, and Sigma Phi Epsilon.  Mr. Stickney has been an "Operation Lifesaver" Presenter and Area Coordinator along with work with teammates and the YMCA. Rich is truly an asset to WNCC, the community of Alliance, and to the larger community of the panhandle."
Reiber was awarded the NCAA Distinguished Alumni Award. Reiber, completed his Associate of Arts degree in Business at WNCC in 1981, before transferring to Chadron State College to earn a Bachelors in Business and MBA. Upon graduation, Reiber rose to the level of general manager at the Panhandle Rural Electric Membership Association (PREMA) and in the early 2000s he was part of a group of Western Nebraska Rural Electric Managers to work with WNCC to develop a Powerline Technology Program. Since the program's inception, PREMA has hired seven Powerline graduates. "The WNCC Alumni Committee felt Ryan was an excellent choice for this award, said Jennifer Sibal, WNCC Alumni Relations Director. "He took his experience as a rural student at WNCC and paved the way to create additional opportunities for rural Nebraska communities. Ryan's leadership and passion was key in developing the Powerline Program at the WNCC-Alliance Campus."
Schools participating in NCAA include: Central Community College, Mid-Plains Community College, Northeast Community College, Southeast Community College, and WNCC.