Laurel Ridge Announces First Graduates in Competency-Based Education Programs

For Immediate Release:
July 11, 2016

Primary Media Contact:
Sally Voth
Public Relations Specialist
[email protected]
Phone: 540-868-7134

K2W Display Geometrix Kit

K2W Display Geometrix KitLaurel Ridge Community College is pleased to announce that four students completed their certificates attained through the new competency-based education (CBE) program at the college, Knowledge to Work (K2W).  The four graduates received certificates in Office Systems Assistant and Information Processing Technician.  These student were able to leverage knowledge from employment and prior coursework to attain these credentials in less time than a traditional program. 

Graduates include: Bettina Fritz of Bealeton, VA (employee of Laurel Ridge); Tina Presley of Front Royal, VA (employee of the Town of Front Royal); Heather Ramseur of Warrenton, VA (employee of Fauquier Health Human Resources); and Nisreen Russell of Warrenton, VA (employee of Fauquier Health).

“The achievements of these students is an important milestone for Laurel Ridge,” said Laurel Ridge President, Dr. Cheryl Thompson-Stacy. “It is exciting to have competency-based education programs in place and to see individuals achieve their goals through the K2W option.”

One of the graduates, Bettina “Tina” Fritz, is an Laurel Ridge employee in the Office of Academic and Student Affairs at the Fauquier Campus.  “Enrolling in the K2W program was a great choice for someone like me with a job, a life, and a lot of work experience,” said Fritz, a resident of Bealeton, VA.  “Through this program, I was able to develop a personalized learning plan that focused on new learning.  The fact that I only used free and low-cost online resource saved me money on textbooks, too.

According to Laurel Ridge Professor Virginia Hartman, CBE is an excellent way to help those with work experience in an office environment complete a credential.  “We are fortunate to have K2W in place at Laurel Ridge,” said Hartman. “There are so many people who could benefit from this program and use their credentials for pay raises and promotions.”

Seven programs are offered this fall, including Associate of Applied Science degrees in Health Information Management and in Information Systems Technology; the Certificate in Office Systems Assistant; and Career Studies Certificates in Hospital Facility Coding, Information Processing Technician, Cyber Security, and Networking Specialist.

Key features of the Knowledge to Work program include the use of personalized learning plans tied to competencies using free and low-cost online resources. Special veterans’ services are in place to translate military job experience into competencies.  Wrap-around student support services are provided by Career Coaches and an Adult Education Instructor.

Knowledge to Work is funded in part by a TAACCCT grant from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration. For more information, visit the program website at:


Founded in 1970, Laurel Ridge Community College is a multi-campus public institution of higher education. With three locations — Middletown, Warrenton, and Luray-Page County — the College serves eight localities in the Shenandoah Valley and northern Piedmont regions. The localities are the counties of Clarke, Fauquier, Frederick, Page, Rappahannock, Shenandoah and Warren and the city of Winchester. Laurel Ridge offers more than 75 associate degree and certificate programs in a wide variety of disciplines, in addition to providing access to bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs offered on site by a four-year institution. Laurel Ridge also serves the business community by offering workforce preparation programs for employees and employers. Laurel Ridge serves more than 9,000 unduplicated credit students and more than 11,000 individuals in professional development and business and industry courses annually.

Laurel Ridge Community College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award associate degrees. Laurel Ridge Community College also may offer credentials such as certificates and diplomas at approved degree levels. Questions about the accreditation of Laurel Ridge Community College may be directed in writing to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, GA 30033-4097, by calling (404) 679-4500, or by using information available on SACSCOC’s website (

Laurel Ridge Community College is an equal opportunity institution providing educational and employment opportunities, programs, services, and activities. Laurel Ridge shall promote and maintain equal employment and educational opportunities without regard to race, color, religion, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnicity, marital status, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions including lactation, age (except when age is a bona fide occupational qualification), status as a veteran, national origin, or other non-merit factors. Laurel Ridge also prohibits sexual misconduct including sexual violence or harassment. Inquiries may be directed to the Associate Vice President, Human Resources, [email protected]173 Skirmisher Lane, Middletown, VA 22645, 540-868-7226.

Laurel Ridge Community College was known as Lord Fairfax Community College until June 2022. For consistency purposes, the college will be referenced as Laurel Ridge going forward.