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Welcoming new neighbors

Though they’ve been in Farmville for about one week now, I’d like to use this space to welcome the newest residents of our community to the Heart of Virginia — the freshmen students at Longwood University (LU) and Hampden-Sydney College (H-SC).

I believe that both LU and H-SC contribute a great deal to the quality of life, the economy and social fabric of this community.

As noted by the Virginia General Assembly and the beautiful mural at the intersection of East Third and Main streets, Farmville is America’s first two-college town — adding to the importance of these institutions of higher learning and their newest students to our community.

It’s important for those of us who live here year-round to embrace what students from these colleges bring to our community in the forms of service, academia and economic impact.

I encourage the non-student residents of Farmville to interact and meet our community’s newest residents. On the same note, I encourage students to take the time to get to know those of us who’ve been here for a while.

It’s my hope that new students at H-SC and LU will take advantage of the opportunities for engagement our community offers, whether it’s recreating along the High Bridge Trail State Park, patronizing local businesses in the downtown district, attending Farmville Town Council and Prince Edward County Board of Supervisors’ meetings, mentoring area youth, volunteering for the Virginia Children’s Book Festival, learning about our rich civil rights history at the Robert Russa Moton Museum or simply walking up to someone who works in town, offering a handshake and a “pleasure to meet you.”

The symbiotic relationship between Farmville, LU and H-SC demonstrates that in working together, what’s produced is a better community for everyone.

JORDAN MILES is managing editor of The Farmville Herald and Farmville Newsmedia LLC. His email address is Jordan.Miles@FarmvilleHerald.com.