SUMMER NEWSLETTER JULY 2015
GTCCGuilford Technical Community Colleges Class of 2015 made history on May 7 as the colleges largest graduating class. Approximately 1,412 students graduated this academic term (2014-2015).
Nearly 1,000 graduates participated in GTCCs 49th Commencement at the Greensboro Coliseum. In his lively keynote speech to the Class of 2015, Dr. Anthony Brown, interim vice president of Student Support Services at GTCC, quoted inspiring words from Thomas Edison to Taylor Swift. But the heart of Browns message to the Class of 2015 was: Dont miss your opportunity. The opportunities students receive at GTCC, he said, are something that many students would not receive at a four-year institution.
Those students also receive a chance a chance to continue your education, a chance to move into a career, and a chance to make new friends. Its that chance, that opportunity, that faith that will keep you going in life. Opportunity is that single petal that comes from a bed of thorns. Its the sun that you see peeking through the clouds, when you are deep in the valley.
There is no easy path to success without hard work and failure, Brown
said. And along the way there will always be naysayers and cynics, but you have to ignore them. Stay focused because you have bigger plans. Get into your Taylor Swift mode and shake them off, shake them off!
Joseph Partin, outgoing Faculty Association president, emphasized in his address to the graduates the concept of sharing. Borrowing an example from pop culture, Partin pondered the idea of a world without Sesame Street and the Muppets.
What would have happened 46 years ago if Jim Henson and his collaborators didnt get together and share something
educational and fun with all of us, Partin asked. As faculty, we have one more challenge for you: Start thinking about ways you can use your degrees and share your collective knowledge to work with and help others.
People like Jim Henson and his collaborators created something special that continues to affect us today, he said.
Imagine for a moment if Jim Henson wouldve kept Kermit and the gang to himself, and was unwilling to
share, how different our lives might be, Partin said. Changing the world for the greater well-being is something we should aspire to, and hopefully we can make this happen. But this can only be accomplished if you are willing to share what youve learned.
During the ceremony, several graduates were recognized for their outstanding traits of leadership, good citizenship and academic excellence. Read more.
Guilford Tech graduates largest class in colleges history
Its that chance, that opportunity, that faith that will keep you going in life.
Dr. Anthony Brown, keynote speaker
GTCC President Dr. Randy Parker and Presidents Medal recipient Elizabeth Pucel.
Dr. Randy Parker, GTCC Board Chair Jarvis Harris and Teaching Innovation Award recipient Joseph Badick. (Carla Kucinski/GTCC.)
Doors open for Basic Skills Plus grads
Pride and gratitude.You feel it the moment you step into the room.
Its there in the words that Estefania Alfaro Ruiz scrolls across a whiteboard in bold, colorful letters: THANK YOU FOR ALL THE HELP AND SUPPORT.
Its there on the faces of friends KaDeidre Hamilton and Mirote Wright, who are in the restroom down the hall giggling while applying each others makeup.
And its in the care that instructors Jean Miller-Levette and Kathy Brown take as they set up a smorgasbord of their students favorite foods, including a white sheet cake to mark the occa-sion.
It was an emotional day for the 10 graduating students of GTCCs Basic Skills Plus Nursing Assistant (NA) Track program. On May 15 they became the first to graduate from the program and overcame a lot of barriers to get there. For many of these stu-dents, the program became their first step toward stable employment and a degree. The 14-week Basic Skills Plus NA program allows students to earn their GED and NA certificate simulta-neously and at no cost to the student.
The culmination of their success was recognized in an intimate ceremony on the High Point Campus, where each graduate received their Nursing Assistant (NA) certificate. On that Friday morning, the bond the students formed not only with each other but also with their teachers and GTCC staff was evident.
For instructors Miller-Levette and Brown, teaching and molding these 10 students was an unforgettable experi-ence.
Im very, very proud of this group, Miller-Levette said. It has not been easy. It has been very trying, but I
knew there were people here with a de-sire to succeed. I know you can make it.
Brown added: You will forever stay in my memory.
Tears of gratitude, pride and hope were shed. Hands were held. Several students spoke of the obstacles they overcame to get to this point in their life. Others shared their gratitude through song or a poem.
The door is wide open, said War-ren Crow, director of Health Careers and Nursing Assistant Training Pro-gram at GTCC, during his remarks to the graduates. Ms. Levette and Ms. Brown have been your alchemists, and
have been successful in creating gold. So shine every day.
Enroll today: Basic Skills Plus NA Track
The next Basic Skills Plus NA Track program will be offered in the fall.
For more information, contact the GTCC Adult Education Intake Office at (336) 454-1126, Ext. 55087.
Basic Skills Plus - NA Track Class of 2015. (Carla Kucinski/GTCC.)
Warren Crow, director of Health Careers and Nursing Assistant Training Program.
Commencement held for Adult High School and GED students
The General Education Development (GED) and Adult High School (AHS) Commencement Ceremony was held on June 6 at Koury Auditorium on the Jamestown Campus. Approximately 27 students participated in the ceremony. Four students received special recognition for their achievements. Jana Carver, Shaquan Stewart and KaDeidre Hamil-ton received the GED Achievement Scholarship Award, and Mauria Alina Islam Khan received the Adult High School Achievement Scholarship Award. Read more.
GTCC recognizes honors students
GTCC recognized its honors students for the 2014-2015 academic year on April 21 during the 34th Annual Honors Ceremony. Academic Awards were awarded to students with the highest program GPA (minimum 3.5) of anyone enrolled in the curriculum. Curriculum Awards were given to students in each degree program who are outstanding in his/her academic achievement and has potential for success in the field he or she has chosen. Each department selects a student.
Special recognition was given to Gary Johnson, this years North Carolina Community College System Academic Excellence Award recipient. Three years ago, Johnson was involved in a severe car accident that caused a traumatic brain injury and loss of mobility. What followed were eight tumultuous months of black outs, daily and persistent headaches, short-term memory loss and an-gry outbursts. He ended up losing everything. His job. His car. His home. His clothing. He came to GTCC to rebuild his life. Read more.
Building for the Future
GED/AHS Class of 2015. (Carla Kucinski/GTCC.)
Gary Johnson (left) and Dr. Randy Parker (right). (Carla Kucinski/GTCC.) 3
GTCC hosts dedications for new facilities Business & Industry and Conference Center
The college held a building dedication ceremony on June 10 for its Business and Industry (B&I) Building and Conference Center on the colleges Donald W. Cameron Campus in Colfax.
The 94,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility is built to LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold Certification and features a variety of green-building practices.
The $48 million B&I Building houses a modern Con-ference Center with a 250-capacity auditorium; a catering kitchen; a model warehouse featuring the latest distribution equipment; flexible lab space to accommodate training for new, existing and expanding industries; and seven general purpose classrooms.
In addition, the Cameron Campus is home to the North Carolina Center for Global Logistics (NCCGL), a collabo-rative effort between GTCC and Davidson County Com-munity College, Forsyth Technical Community College
and Randolph Community College. NCCGL focuses on developing a highly trained workforce for the logistics and supply chain industry and provides education, workforce development and advisory services to individuals and busi-nesses. Read more.
GTCC opens new veterans center
In May GTCC opened the doors to its new Veterans Re-source Center, a designated space on the colleges Jamestown Campus devoted to serving the needs of military and veteran students.
The Veterans Resource Center will serve as a centralized lo-cation for military and veteran students to network with each other in a welcoming and comfortable environment. The 1,000 square-foot-space will feature a computer lab, lounge area, periodic visits from Veterans Affairs counselors, and other resources.
Flora Taylor, coordinator of GTCCs Veterans and Military Assistance Program, says the Center was modeled after United Service Organization (USO) Centers offered in select airports. She wanted the GTCC Veterans Resource Center to mirror the same relaxing and friendly atmosphere USO Centers are well-known for, and aid in the transition of student veterans returning to the classroom.
When you get out of the service, you try to find where you fit in. It can be very isolating for military veterans enrolling in college, Taylor said. The Veterans Resource Center will pro-vide our military and veteran students with an inviting place to share stories and similar experiences and ease what can sometimes be a tough transition. Read more.
In May GTCC opened the doors to its new Veterans Re-source Center, a designated space on the colleges Jamestown Campus devoted to serving the needs of military and veteran
GTCC President Dr. Randy Parker. (Carla Kucinski/GTCC.)
Building for the Future
Center for Creative and Performing Arts
GTCC celebrated an exciting chapter in the colleges history on April 16 with the official unveiling of the new Center for Creative and Performing Arts Theatre.
Located on the High Point Campus, the Center for Creative and Performing Arts Theatre will serve as an additional teaching lab and performance space for students enrolled in GTCCs Creative and Performing Arts programs, comprised of entertainment technology, theatre and music. The two-story 11,705 square-foot-fa-cility features a modified black box stage and theater seating for 82.
The GTCC Theatre Program presented Greater Tuna, the first public performance in the new Center for Creative and Performing Arts Theatre, to a sold-out audience on April 17.
The Center for Creative and Performing Arts Theatre is the final piece in a longtime vision to create one cen-tralized location for all of the Creative and Performing Arts programs and stimulate further collaboration between students on cross-departmental projects and performances.
In addition to the new theatre, the college also offers two performance venues: a major production studio with seating for an audience of 225; and an outdoor am-phitheater accommodating more than 550. Read more.
GTCC opens new veterans center
The Veterans Resource Center will serve as a centralized location for military and veteran students to network with each other in a welcoming and comfortable environment. The 1,000 square-foot-space will feature a computer lab, lounge area, periodic visits from Veterans Affairs counselors, and other resources.
Flora Taylor, coordinator of GTCCs Veterans and Military Assistance Program, says the Center was modeled after United Ser-vice Organization (USO) Centers offered in select airports. She wanted the GTCC Veterans Resource Center to mirror the same relaxing and friendly atmosphere USO Centers are well-known for, and aid in the transition of student veterans returning to the classroom.
When you get out of the service, you try to find where you fit in. It can be very isolating for military veterans enrolling in college, Taylor said. The Veterans Resource Center will provide our military and veteran students with an inviting place to share stories and similar experiences and ease what can sometimes be a tough transition. Read more.
Building for the Future
Alums share wisdom with single parents
Ednalyn Hurley has touched a lot of lives.Through her work as a counselor at
GTCC, she has provided support and encouragement to countless students, particularly single parents.
Twenty years ago, Hurley founded a single parents support group to provide an outlet for single mothers and fathers needing encouragement and fellowship. This year, the group celebrated its 20th anniversary with a luncheon on the Jamestown Campus. Six alumni of the single parents group returned to cam-pus to share with current single parent students their stories of struggle and triumph. The luncheon was an oppor-tunity for alumni to encourage, inspire and uplift current students.
For these five women, the single parent support group was their refuge. They formed lasting friendships, baby-sat each others kids and leaned on one another during tough times.
I learned to embrace everything that came my way and it was all because of Miss Hurley and the single parents group, said April Thompson, a sin-
gle parent alumni and founder of the nonprofit A Joyous Transition Family Resource Center. I kept coming back to Miss Hurley because she gave me wisdom. She gave me knowledge.
Each alum stressed to current stu-dents to take advantage of all the resources available to them, particularly the single parents support group.
Everything you need is in this room, said Donnell Seyni, a certified Life Coach, author and inspirational speaker.
For Monique Banks, who helped start the single parents group, Seyni was the one she leaned on when they were both single parents starting out at GTCC.
I dont know what I would have done without her, Banks said.
With the single parents group, Banks found solidarity. That bond, she said, helped her survive.
There are a lot of things people dont know we go through, she said.
Banks graduated last year with a bachelors in social work. She plans to open a home for single mothers one day.
The afternoon discussion uplifted Loretta Harris, a psychology student at GTCC and member of the single par-
ents support group. Her emotions were evident in her smile and the tears she wiped from her face. She found solace in knowing that other single moms understood what shes going through.
I got so much inspiration from them, Harris said. I cant wait for us to do it again. Im just appreciative.
I learned to embrace everything that came my way and it was all because of Miss Hurley and the single parents group.
- April Thompson, GTCC alumni
GTCC alum Alicia Pender (left) with GTCC counselor Ednalyn Hurley (right). (Carla Kucinski/GTCC.)