News and Features

What's going on in the Central Piedmont community and what Central Piedmont is doing in the community.

  • North Classroom Building welcomes students on Central Campus

    Central Piedmont is excited to announce that its new North Classroom Building, located on the Central Campus quad, is open and ready to welcome students in time for the spring 2020 semester.

    “With this new space, the college will be better able to equip students with the skills required to pursue family-sustaining careers and transform their lives,” said Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, Central Piedmont president. “I firmly believe we at the college are in the life-transformation businesses, and this new building will be an important element in this process.”

    The new 154,100 square-foot facility is the largest building ever constructed by the college and features:

    • 23 classrooms
    • 29 computer classrooms
    • 200-seat auditorium
    • Four biology labs
    • Two chemistry labs
    • Faculty/staff offices
    • Bill and Patty Gorelick Gallery

    The North Classroom Building is larger than the Overcash Building (128,304 square feet), also located on the Central Campus. “This new building will provide much-needed classroom space to address student demand on this campus,” Deitemeyer added.

    Please note: if you’re a new or returning student, who is not sure if you have a class in the new facility, the building will be listed as “North Clas” on your schedule.

    To see its location, view the Central Campus map.

  • Central Piedmont seeks nominations for 2020 Hagemeyer and Young Alumni Awards

    Do you know a Central Piedmont Community College graduate who is making a tremendous difference in the community? Nominations are currently being sought for the 2020 Richard H. Hagemeyer Educational Advancement Award and the 2020 Young Alumni Award of Excellence. These awards recognize Central Piedmont graduates who have significantly benefited from their experiences at Central Piedmont and whose efforts have helped the community.

    Nominations are being sought for individuals who have:

    • demonstrated community involvement/professional involvement, social responsibility and impact
    • acquired scholastic and learning skills that have led to continued personal and educational growth
    • improved his or her economic status and social capital as a result of attending Central Piedmont
    • invested in the lives of others and is seen as a role model
    • graduated within the last 10 years (Young Alumni Award of Excellence only)

    Individuals interested in applying should note:

    • attendance at graduation is preferred
    • political candidates may not be selected or honored in a year in which they are actively pursuing election or re-election

    The college will recognize this year’s winners at Central Piedmont’s commencement ceremony on Thursday, May 14, 2020, and a one-year scholarship will be granted to a Central Piedmont student in an area of study reflective of the winner’s background.

    Nomination forms are available on the Central Piedmont website until the nomination deadline passes.

    Completed nomination forms should be submitted online; or mailed to Christa Newkirk, Office of Alumni Relations, P.O. Box 35009, Charlotte, NC, 28235. The deadline for nominations is Feb. 28, 2020, at 6 p.m. For more information, contact Christa Newkirk at alumni@cpcc.edu or call 704.330.6808.

  • Small Business Center to Partner on ‘53 Ideas Pitch Competition’

    The Fifth Third Bank Foundation has announced its 2019 Strengthening Our Communities Fund grants for North Carolina. The awards benefit local nonprofit programs that support small business development. The Fifth Third Foundation awarded Central Piedmont Community College a $50,000 grant to support entrepreneurship through a pitch competition.

    Central Piedmont designed the “53 Ideas Pitch Competition” to help address income inequality and equity through entrepreneurship. The competition will provide underserved individuals who participate with access to the capital, training resources, and social connections needed to remove barriers, and allow individuals to take an idea and turn it into a viable business. The top prize winner of the competition will receive $10,000 in seed money for a start-up business.

    “Fifth Third Bank is committed to strengthening our communities, and we cannot do it alone: it takes strong and engaged partners like Central Piedmont to truly make a difference,” said Lee Fite, regional president for Fifth Third Bank in the Mid-Atlantic. “The ‘53 Ideas Pitch Competition’ addresses an essential link between economic mobility and entrepreneurship. The work our partners like Central Piedmont are doing to increase access to capital for entrepreneurs will directly benefit our community.”

    “Studies show that four out of five entrepreneurs do not access bank loans or venture capital. Rather, their sources of funding are personal net worth, family wealth, or connections to networks,” said Renee Hode, executive director of Central Piedmont’s Small Business Center. “Unfortunately, this leads to inequality in entrepreneurship. The ‘53 Ideas Pitch Competition’ seeks to expand opportunity for everyone in the greater Charlotte region, especially those populations who may experience barriers or have limited access to resources to start a business.”

    The “53 Ideas Pitch Competition” is an open call for business ideas from residents across the region. Individuals will have 53 seconds to pitch their idea in the form of a video submission uploaded to 53ideas.com. The submission deadline is Feb. 20, 2020. For open, inclusive access to the needed technology, Central Piedmont’s Small Business Center will be hosting pop-up recording events throughout the community. Visit 53ideas.com for pop-up dates and times.

    Judges will review the submissions and select the top 53 pitches. Top entrants will advance in the competition and receive a $50 award. Over the following 53 days, the participants will work to refine their ideas and master their pitch before another selection process.

    Training and coaching on pitching, marketing, financing, forecasting, and business law will be available to participants, regardless of whether they advance in the competition. Free resources will be offered by Small Business Centers located at community colleges throughout the region, including Central Piedmont, Cleveland, Gaston, Mitchell, Rowan-Cabarrus, South Piedmont, and Stanly.

    After the 53-day training period, the top 53 entrants will participate in a closed pitch event where the judges will narrow the field down to 15. The top 15 will receive $200 each and go on to compete on stage for the top awards: first place receives $10,000; second place earns $5,000; and third place receives $2,500 in seed funding to help turn their ideas into a viable business.

    The 38 participants who did not advance can still showcase their ideas at an expo before the final pitch event. This gives these participants visibility with event attendees, as well as an opportunity to share their ideas and increase their social networks.

    “53 Ideas Pitch Competition” is made possible by the support from the Fifth Third Bank Foundation and the Central Piedmont Foundation, and also the City of Charlotte’s Economic Development Office.

    Learn more about the “53 Ideas Pitch Competition” at 53ideas.com or upload a video submission by the Feb. 20 deadline.

  • Koichi Takara receives 2019 Community Impact Student Award

    Congratulations to Central Piedmont Community College student Koichi Takara who was recently recognized for outstanding leadership and service by North Carolina Campus Compact, a statewide network of colleges and universities with a shared commitment to civic engagement.

    Takara received the organization’s 2019 Community Impact Student Award, which honors one student leader at each school, who has demonstrated a deep commitment to community involvement and an ability to inspire others.

    Takara has made significant leadership and service contributions both inside and outside the Central Piedmont community since becoming a student in 2018. He is a Foundation Scholar for Peer Mentoring, was elected President of the Student Government Association, and is a member of Phi Theta Kappa, Rotaract, and the NC Scholars of Global Distinction program.

    As SGA Student Body President, he not only leads the constitutional revision committee to address the needs of the student body, but also strives to engage all six of the college’s campuses by boosting student engagement in the many opportunities and campus organizations the college offers. His efforts have resulted in more students being involved civically and adopting leadership roles.

    Says Jesse Bennett, the director of service-learning at Central Piedmont who nominated Takara for the award, “Koichi’s approach is always enthusiastic and compassionate. He possesses a willingness to share skills, knowledge, and expertise on a wide array of subject matter.”

    Takara, a Huntersville resident, plans to major in political science and international relations and eventually attend law school after completing his associate in arts degree at Central Piedmont.

  • Large gift will help establish Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence

    A donor who wishes to remain anonymous has made a significant gift commitment to Central Piedmont Community College to support the creation of a new Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence. The center will advance the best practices of impactful teaching at the college to inspire, guide, and support instructors in the key areas of pedagogy, course content and information delivery.

    The Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence at Central Piedmont will facilitate the professional development of the college’s full- and part-time faculty, with the goal of enriching students’ learning and overall educational experience, motivating them to persist and complete their programs of study.

    The gift to help create the center comes as part of Central Piedmont’s ongoing “Powering a Stronger Future” campaign. The five-year fundraising effort seeks to raise $40 million – the most ambitious and comprehensive campaign in the college’s 56-year history. The campaign will run through June 2022, and has raised more than $23.5 million to date.

    The center’s focus areas will include:

    • developing pedagogy that is inclusive, equitable, and centered on student learning and success,
    • using technological tools and resources to enhance classroom teaching,
    • encouraging and supporting instructional innovation,
    • furthering the continued growth and instructional effectiveness of all faculty,
    • fostering and disseminating strategies that improve classroom experiences for students,
    • promoting the ongoing assessment of teaching strategies and student learning, and
    • developing instructional content and methods that promote critical thinking and skills needed for careers and further education.

    Current programming plans for the center include:

    • conducting workshops for instructors,
    • sponsoring guest speakers to share best practices,
    • providing semester-long orientation and training programs for new instructors and skills-refreshment programs for established faculty,
    • establishing mentoring relationships for new instructors with successful classroom instructors,
    • conducting training sessions focused on the needs of part-time instructors, and
    • sharing scholarly research and articles related to best practices in classroom teaching and learning.

    “The Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence will be a permanent resource and catalyst for instructional excellence at Central Piedmont,” said Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, Central Piedmont president. “The center will be based on Central Campus, but it will serve instructors and offer programming at all of the college’s campuses.  The center will be critical to ensuring outstanding classroom instruction and learning for all of our students.”

    The college will hold a ceremony to dedicate the center during the 2020 spring semester. 

  • Central Piedmont Alumnus Wins Food Network's 'Chopped'

    Congratulations to Central Piedmont alumnus and 2018 Hagemeyer Award winner Chris Coleman for winning Food Network's "Chopped!"

    We are so proud of our alumni and all that they are doing to conquer possibility.

    Read the complete Charlotte Observer article.

  • College launches JA Finance Park® and JA BizTown® storefront

    Representatives from Central Piedmont Community College and Junior Achievement of the Central Carolinas gathered at the organization’s JA Finance Park® at the JA TowneBank Opportunity headquarters in Camp North End to participate in a special ribbon-cutting event to welcome Central Piedmont to the space.

    JA Finance Park® and JA BizTown® are two programs spearheaded by Junior Achievement USA to prepare young people for the real world by teaching them how to follow a monthly budget, understand the actual “costs of living,” and think critically and solve problems. In addition, students are asked to make decisions regarding housing, transportation, education, insurance, and more.

    JA of the Carolinas recently launched these two programs in the Charlotte area, creating a simulated town that helps students (grades 4-12) connect the dots between what they learn in school and the real world. During their visit to the “town,” students have the opportunity to visit a variety of storefronts, including  SunTrust, Publix, AT&T, Equifax, and many more.

    The Central Piedmont space is overseen by part-time Central Piedmont employees who are on-site to not only educate students on the different educational paths available to them, but also to help high school students apply to the college for free and assist them with filling out their financial aid applications.

    This is an exciting partnership with Central Piedmont and the Junior League. Central Piedmont is the first community college in the country to participate in these national programs, which strive to instill sound financial literacy and money management skills in today’s youth so they may succeed in the future.

    Learn more about JA Finance Park® and JA Biztown®.

  • #ConquerPossibility: Desiree Kinker

    Central Piedmont alumna Desiree Kinker, a chef at one of the tailgating groups at the Panthers' games, talks about her life transition from a recovering drug addict to a tailgating star in this Nov. 8 Charlotte Observer article

    Read how Desiree, a graduate of the college's culinary arts program, is using her Central Piedmont education to conquer possibility.

  • Students Attend Model UN Event, Named Outstanding Delegates

    Last month, Central Piedmont Model United Nations Club members attended the UNC Carolinas Conference, together with high schools and colleges from across North Carolina. The event gave the college’s first-time and returning Central Piedmont Model United Nations delegates the opportunity to further develop their negotiating, problem solving, and public speaking skills within each committee. 

    Students researched, debated, and wrote mock UN resolutions at the conference about a variety of current global topics, such as gender and the role of women in disarmament, the effects of global warming on human health, the rising tensions between China and the U.S., and preventing spillover violence from the Sudan conflict.

    “I learned about topics I otherwise would not have been aware of beforehand,” said Returning Model UN member Yasmine Outtara.

    Three of the newer members of the Central Piedmont Model UN team – Katherine Beekman, Emma Hoff, and Christopher St. Hilaire – were named Outstanding Delegates for representing South Africa in the Security Council and General Assembly 1st respectively.

    How to Join the Central Piedmont Model UN Team

    Any Central Piedmont student is welcome to join the Model UN Club. Club meetings are:

    Central Campus: Mondays, 2:30 - 4 p.m., in Zeiss, Room 3120

    Levine Campus: Fridays, 1-2 p.m., in Levine II, Room 1307

    Learn more about how to join the Central Piedmont Model UN team.

    Upcoming Conferences

    Central Piedmont students will be attending two more conferences in spring 2020: the Harvard National Model UN Conference in February and the Southern Regional Model UN Conference in Charlotte in March. 

  • Central Piedmont announces campaign goal of $40 million

    Central Piedmont Community College has launched the public phase of its “Powering a Stronger Future” campaign. The five-year fundraising effort seeks to raise $40 million – the most ambitious and comprehensive campaign in the college’s 56-year history.

    The campaign will run through June 2022, and has raised $23.5 million during its two-year quiet phase.

    “The Powering a Stronger Future campaign is about students and addressing the upward mobility challenges in Mecklenburg County,” Central Piedmont President Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer explained. “For those who want our community to thrive and want to make an investment – education is a game changer. Central Piedmont is a great place to help students thrive and be successful in our community. I think there is no better investment for Mecklenburg’s future.”

    The Powering a Stronger Future campaign priorities include:

    • $15 million to fund student scholarships and support the student emergency fund;
    • $9.5 million for student support services, such as academic and career advising, leadership opportunities, out-of-classroom experiences, enhanced disability services, and the Summer Bridge program that helps students prepare for their first semester of college;
    • $9.5 million to further instructional excellence through support for programs, equipment and other resources and faculty;
    • $5 million for specific programs that foster economic mobility, such as the Accelerated Career Training program for under- and unemployed adults, the early childhood education program that trains pre-K teachers, and strategic workforce partnerships; and
    • $1 million for the college’s annual fund to respond to evolving priorities and needs.

    Pat Rodgers, president and CEO of Rodgers Builders and a Central Piedmont alumna, is serving as the honorary campaign chair. The campaign chairpersons are Weston Andress, regional president, PNC Financial Services; Linda Lockman-Brooks, president, Lockman-Brooks Marketing Services; and Carl Showalter, president, Showalter Construction.

    “Central Piedmont is a solid investment for donors because you see the results. You see the results in the lives of Central Piedmont graduates,” Rodgers shared. “What they carry with them from Central Piedmont is the education of a lifetime, and it changes their lives and the lives around them.

    “My time at Central Piedmont was life changing. It meant so much to me to have the opportunity to go to the Central Piedmont of my day. When I look at what Central Piedmont is now and the impact it makes, it is just amazing. I know the impact it had on my life, and I think it’s fair to say, if you live in this community, Central Piedmont impacts your life as well,” Rodgers added.

    For more information about the Central Piedmont’s Powering a Stronger Future campaign, visit cpccfoundation.org/campaign, or call the Central Piedmont Foundation at 704.330.6869.

    “Central Piedmont is a trusted entity,” Deitemeyer said. “When this community considers the number of people we need going into the workforce and how we’re going to move this great city to the next level that offers prosperity to all, it’s going to take an education provider like Central Piedmont. So this campaign is about people and providing pathways to opportunity and greater economic mobility and personal success.”