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News Releases @ TCC

Renowned speaker on college-age women’s issues

NORFOLK, Va. (Feb. 14, 2011) – An esteemed speaker on college-age women’s issues, Kemba Smith Pradia will speak at Tidewater Community College on Tuesday, March 1, at 12:30 and 6 p.m. in the Advanced Technology Center Theater on the Virginia Beach Campus. The talks are free and open to all.

Pradia’s message for young women involves being careful of the choices they make and finding love and contentment within themselves, instead of seeking it elsewhere.

While attending college, Kemba Smith Pradia was swept into a relationship with an abusive drug dealer who was a major figure in a crack cocaine ring. She received a 24-year prison sentence for a drug charge, even though she didn’t do drugs or sell them. After being incarcerated for over 6 years, Pradia was given clemency by then President Bill Clinton and released from prison.

Pradia now tours the country speaking to women about her experiences. An avid speaker on the rights of ex-felons, she is working in Virginia to reinstate their power to vote, serve on a jury and run for public office. Pradia graduated from Virginia Union University with a bachelor’s degree in social work and attended law school at Howard University.

Married with two children, Kemba Smith Pradia also runs the Kemba Smith Foundation that serves families dealing with the criminal justice system.


Laurie White

Tidewater Community College - the largest provider of higher education and Workforce Solutions services in Hampton Roads - topped 45,000 students in 2009-10. The 16th highest associate-degree producer in the nation, TCC offers more than 150 programs including business administration, culinary arts, general studies, modeling & simulation, network security, nursing, and automotive technology. Among the fastest-growing two-year institutions in the United States, TCC was founded in 1968 as a part of the Virginia Community College System. The college serves the South Hampton Roads region with campuses in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach as well as the TCC Jeanne and George Roper Performing Arts Center in Norfolk’s theater district, the Visual Arts Center in Olde Towne Portsmouth, the Regional Automotive Center in Chesapeake, and the Advanced Technology Center in Virginia Beach. Forty-five percent of the region’s residents attending a college or university in Virginia last fall were enrolled at TCC. For more information, visit