When describing Ricky Brown Jr.'s educational journey, the word "traditional" doesn't immediately come to mind.
Raised by his grandparents, he didn't attend college directly after high school graduation. Instead, he began a full-time career at Goodyear where he slowly but surely climbed the corporate ladder.
Even though he was making strides at Goodyear and building a successful career with the company, Ricky wanted more, for both himself and his family. He no longer wanted to live paycheck to paycheck or be embarrassed to have to say "no" when asked about his education status on applications, forms, etc. He decided it was time to earn a college degree.
Unfortunately, before he could take that next step in his life plan, he was involved in a serious motorcycle accident. To make matters worse, doctors discovered a congenital heart disorder during recovery that would require him to undergo countless surgeries, therapy sessions, and more.
Despite this setback, he enrolled in college, choosing Central Piedmont because its multi-campus footprint was convenient for his lifestyle and its robust Comprehensive Articulation Agreement with surrounding four-year colleges would ensure all of the credits he earned would 100 percent transfer to East Carolina University, where he planned to complete his B.S. in Communications (ECU).
Upon enrolling in 2007, he was awarded a Levine Scholarship, which to Ricky, was the largest blessing of all. "The Levine Scholarship was extremely beneficial," he says. "It helped partially offset the medical expenses I incurred during college, allowing me to focus more on obtaining my Associate in Science degree and less on my finances."
Thanks to Central Piedmont's flexible learning schedule, Ricky started back to school slowly, choosing to take online courses because they could easily fit in-between his physical therapy sessions. Focusing on his studies helped him keep his mind engaged while his body recovered.
During his time at Central Piedmont, Ricky fostered a variety of relationships with peers and faculty alike, and generated a number of professional connections as well. "I still communicate with Dr. Anne McIntosh, one of my instructors from Central Piedmont. In fact, she continues to support my professional and academic endeavors to this day."
Since graduating from Central Piedmont in 2009, Ricky earned his bachelor's degree from ECU, continues to work at Goodyear in Internal Audit, was accepted into the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), and is attending graduate school at East Carolina University, pursuing an MBA, which he is projected to complete in spring 2020. After graduate school, he's considering earning a Ph.D.
"My goal is to continue to grow and develop into the best version of myself," he says. "I would love to one day give back to Central Piedmont -- the institution that gave me the foothold I needed to succeed in all areas of my life." Read more
Congratulations to Jeani Orr, Central Piedmont Cytotechnology student, who recently was awarded the Cytotechnology Bob Gay scholarship.
The scholarship was established by Kim Kowalczik in memory of her father, Bob Gay, who made significant contributions to the education of cytotechnology students and was a founding member of the American Society of Cytotechnology (ASCT). The scholarship awards $1,000 and sponsorship (travel and accommodations) to the upcoming ASCT annual conference to an outstanding student.
Candidates must have completed the first six months of training in an accredited cytotechnology program and must be members of the ASCT. The award is based on academic performance, financial need, service and a demonstrated potential to make significant contributions to the cytotechnology profession. Student membership with ASCT is complimentary and is a requirement for the scholarship application. Read more
Approximately 18,000 students from Mecklenburg County and beyond converged at Central Piedmont Community College on Thursday, Aug. 15, as the college kicked off its 2019 fall semester.
Throughout the day, Student Life representatives and other staff members were stationed at information tables across all six Central Piedmont campuses to help ease students' first day of class.
Representatives guided students to classes, answered their questions, and provided them with important college information, such as valuable campus resources, parking guidelines, and available extracurricular activities.
In addition, Central Piedmont's president, Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, welcomed students at the Central Campus as they began their studies to enhance their skills and prepare for future careers.Read more
Thanks to the Anthony Foxx Scholarship, Jamal Moss was able to attend Central Piedmont Community College a place where he says he "found everyone."
"There were days when I wasn't even on my own side," explains Jamal. "But thanks to Central Piedmont's staff members, I was able to overcome life's obstacles, stay grounded and know that I was going to succeed. The Central Piedmont team was not only my greatest source of support, but also my biggest cheerleader."
With this support system on his side, Jamal was able to focus on his studies; enjoy the resources at his disposal, including SGA, MAN UP, and Service Club; and graduate from Central Piedmont in 2012 with an associate degree.
Jamal used his Central Piedmont degree as the launch pad for what has become an impressive educational journey. Since graduating, he's earned a bachelor's degree in biological sciences from N.C. State, a master's degree in bioethics and science policy from Duke University, and is currently a first year medical student at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee.
During that time, he became affiliated with multiple causes and initiatives that he continues to be involved with today, including the Racial Equity Task Force for the City of Durham and the N.C. State College of Sciences Alumni Advisory Board, among others.
And while Jamal's sights are clearly set on the road that lies ahead, he's quick to remember the many people and places that got him where he is today.
"I use the values of community, accountability, trust, and integrity that I learned at Central Piedmont to guide my current work in the healthcare field," says Jamal. "Attending Central Piedmont allowed me to explore new opportunities and take new adventures experiences that will help me create a diverse portfolio of work that will not only enhance my résumé, but also my pursuit of one day becoming a physician and community advocate in the medical field."
The Central Piedmont design team of Megan Burns, Valeria Ramon Vacas, and Eric Schiavo, won first place in the fifth annual National Coalition of Community College Architecture Programs (CCCAP) Student Design Competition. Led by Architectural Technology Program Chair Travis Smith, Associate AIA, the team's work was compared against entries from 23 other schools in 14 states.
During the competition, students were asked to design an Ecology Center in Balandra Beach, California. The students were given a specific site and program, and asked to develop a complete building design that included a material proposal and architectural details. This is the second year Central Piedmont has participated in the competition. The students completed the design as part of their ARC 213 Design Project course.
The jurors, comprised of architects Rosa T. Sheng (SmithGroup), Kristen DiStefano (Atelier Ten), and Prescott Reavis (SEED), commended the Central Piedmont team for their "very strong integrated presentation which provided a clean, clear communication of the concept and execution." The students were commended for their "beautiful diagrams and imagery," as well as their "cultural and geographical investigations that informed the site analysis." The first place team received a $300 cash prize and certificates.
For more information on the competition, please contact Melanie Reddrick at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 704.330.2722, ext 7473. For more information on the Architectural Technology department, please visit cpcc.edu/programs/architectural-technology.Read more
The State Employees' Credit Union (SECU) is providing 10 Corporate and Continuing Education scholarships to eligible Central Piedmont students who are enrolled in the college's continuing education welding classes during the fall 2019 semester.
Each $500 scholarship will help a student gain the new job-related welding skills they need to succeed in the field or upgrade their current welding skills to excel in the workforce. Scholarship funding may be applied toward the cost of registration fees, books, certification fees, course supplies, and other educational expenses associated with the college's "Introduction to Stick Welding" continuing education course.
Learn more about the scholarship:
- Must be a U.S. citizen and a North Carolina resident.
- Must be in one of the following target groups: An unemployed or underemployed adult, member of the N.C. National Guard, a military veteran or spouse, or an underserved population in a specific workforce sector or area. Note: Underemployed will be defined as individuals earning 200% below the federal poverty level. Preference will be given to students with limited or no access to financial aid from other programs.
- Must enroll in "Introduction to Stick Welding," a course which leads to an industry-recognized credential.
- Must not be an employee or family member of an employee of the State Employees' Credit Union or SECU Foundation.
Application and Selection Criteria
Interested and eligible students should complete the application to be considered for the scholarship. The scholarship awardees will be selected by the Central Piedmont SECU Scholarship Selection Committee. All decisions are final.
For additional information, contact Becky Hall at email@example.com or at 704.330.4204.
This scholarship is credited to the student's business office account for related tuition, books, and fees.
The Student Emergency Grant Fund started at Central Piedmont Community College in 2018. The grant provides short-term financial support to students experiencing an enrollment-threatening financial emergency. It is a one-time grant used by students to cover expenses that require immediate attention. Examples include temporary loss of income or child care, temporary housing needs due to homelessness or sudden loss of housing, replacement of essential items due to theft, fire or other disaster, essential safety needs, medical or dental emergencies, and transportation emergencies.
The Student Emergency Fund benefited 34 students during the 2018-2019 academic year, with an average grant of $230.
Tameka Hill, a mom of four boys and a first-year adult student, received the Student Emergency Grant in the fall of 2018. The grant helped Tameka "not to have to stress about my hardship and lose focus on class and or homework." The grant emphasizes to hard-working students like Tameka that Central Piedmont "truly cares about the students and community."
For more information on the Student Emergency Grant, including how to apply, visit Central Piedmont's website.
Beginning this fall, the Levine Campus will offer expanded course offerings of some of its most in-demand classes on weekday evenings, Fridays, and Saturdays to give students more options to complete a two-year, college transfer degree more quickly.
The new course offerings are comprised of more than 40, high-demand courses. The classes will be offered in sequential order and focus on a variety of general education subjects, ranging from biology and public speaking, to psychology and business.
Offering more courses in the evenings, and on Fridays and Saturdays, will allow the college to better accommodate students' busy schedules, setting them up for success both inside and outside of the classroom.
To learn more, please call Edith McElroy, dean of the Levine Campus, at 704.330.4386.Read more
The Summer Bridge program at Central Piedmont Community College helps recent high school graduates adjust to college life and network with other students and faculty. They are able to jumpstart their academic career and avoid "summer melt," the phenomenon in which high school graduates are excited and plan to attend college but never enroll. According to a June 2018 blog post from the U.S. Department of Education, nearly one-third of high school graduates planning to attend college never make it, and summer melt impacts low-income and first-generation students the hardest.
During the six-week program, students can earn up to six college credits. They participate in activities designed to build college-level academic skills and a sense of community. Associate Dean of Mentoring and Bridge Programs Willie Williams says that students learn the differences between high school and college during the first week at Summer Bridge. The small, structured environment helps students with this transition.
Aslhy Isaias is a first-time college student enrolled in the Associate in Arts degree program for fall 2019. She met Mr. Williams while attending the Summer Bridge orientation with a friend. Mr. Williams explained that going from high school to college was a huge step and not always easy, and he convinced Aslhy to join the program According to Aslhy, Summer Bridge has helped her to "transition easier, learn the way around campus and classrooms, and...make connections."
To learn more about the Summer Bridge program, visit Central Piedmont's website. Read more
A generous gift from The Gambrell Foundation provided laptops to 700 first-time, full-time students showing the highest level of need who are enrolled at Central Piedmont for the 2019-20 academic year. This summer, student recipients are participating in orientation sessions to get acquainted with their new computers.
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