W&L’s Fran Elrod Quoted in NPR Segment on the Blue Ridge Mile Clinic Elrod serves as the university advisor to the program that supports clients in navigating the required steps toward obtaining or reinstating a driver’s license.
Fran Elrod, associate director of the Shepherd Program and instructor of poverty studies at Washington and Lee University, was recently quoted in a segment on National Public Radio (NPR) featuring the university’s Blue Ridge Mile Clinic.
Elrod serves as an advisor to the student-led group, which partners with Virginia’s Drive to Work Initiative to help low-income or previously incarcerated individuals gain or restore their driving privileges. The clinic combines several ongoing efforts to address licensing problems around Rockbridge County.
The Blue Ridge Mile was recently profiled by the Cardinal News, and NPR interviewed Cardinal News reporter Kate Flannigan during the three-minute and 29-second on-air segment. Flannigan cited Elrod’s explanation for the basis of the program and how the students are trained to assist clients in securing a license, emphasizing that having the ability to drive is essential given the lack of public transportation in Southwest Virginia. Established in 2022, the Blue Ridge Mile has assisted 75 clients and helped 12 of them resecure their licenses.
Elrod joined the W&L staff in 2006 and has held various roles throughout her tenure, including coordinator of co-curricular education and associate director of Community Based Learning. She received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from James Madison University.
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