News and Features

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

  • College dedicates the Leon Levine Health Sciences Center

    Central Piedmont Community College today dedicated the Leon Levine Health Sciences Center on the college’s Central Campus. The naming is in recognition of a $2.5-million grant from The Leon Levine Foundation to support health sciences education and health careers preparation at Central Piedmont.

    College leaders and community partners including Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, president, Central Piedmont; Linda Lockman-Brooks, chair, Board of Trustees, Central Piedmont; Weston M. Andress, president, Board of Trustees, Central Piedmont Community College Foundation; and Thomas W. Lawrence III, president and director, The Leon Levine Foundation were in attendance at the 11 a.m., ribbon cutting event.

    “Not many partnerships last 20 years and yet today, we write the beginning of another chapter in this amazing story [between Central Piedmont and The Leon Levine Foundation],” said Lawrence. “What has happened in this particular 20-year partnership? Hundreds of students educated, thousands of lives transformed, and now, with this grant, the crossing of $10 million of investment entrusted to Central Piedmont by The Leon Levine Foundation.”

    The Leon Levine Health Sciences Center opened its doors in August 2020, and boasts 74,450 square-feet of space. The facility was designed by Creech & Associates, working with Morris-Berg Architects; was constructed by Rodgers; and provides a home base for multiple health professions programs, including:

    • dental assisting
    • biomedical equipment technology
    • surgical technology
    • polysomnography

    It also hosts a state-of-the-art virtual-anatomy classroom.

    The Leon Levine Foundation grant comes to the college as part of its ongoing “Powering a Stronger Future Campaign,” which seeks to raise $40 million to support students, programs, and faculty development.

    Learn more about Central Piedmont’s healthcare programs.

  • Civil rights icon, former mayor visits college

    The Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Council at Central Piedmont brought civil rights icon and former Charlotte Mayor Harvey Gantt to Central Piedmont’s Halton Theater stage on Oct. 14, to serve as a panelist during its EDI event titled, “A Story of Perseverance in Driving Change.”

    Mr. Gantt was joined on stage by moderator Dr. Charles Mitchell, equity and opportunity presidential fellow at Central Piedmont, as well as panelists Dr. Tracie Clark, vice president for strategy and organizational excellence, and Dr. Chris Cathcart, vice president for student affairs, at Central Piedmont.

    During the event, Central Piedmont employees and students had the opportunity to hear the group discuss the power of collaboration and allyship in creating change and moving the EDI needle in a positive direction, and how Central Piedmont can continue pushing forward in supporting its students and the Charlotte community. 

    “Central Piedmont is a very special place. This institution - at its most critical level - allows folks from all circumstances in life to get on a ladder of mobility upward,” explained Gantt. “I like the word ‘transformation.’ Central Piedmont makes a difference in the things that students can do. It puts individuals on a ladder, that can be built as high as they want it … and that’s why the college is a very important place. I’ve tried over the years to understand its value to the community and to be as supportive of it whenever I can.”

    Mr. Gantt was Charlotte's first African-American mayor and the first African-American student enrolled at Clemson University. His visit is one of the enrichment opportunities the college is using to help advance its EDI strategy, which college leadership has identified as mission-critical work. Over the past year, Central Piedmont has hosted a number of EDI related events for both its employees and students to attend. Examples include: inclusive leadership trainings, Black History Month events, inclusive teaching practice sessions, examining best EDI practices from other institutions, courageous conversations, and more.

    Central Piedmont is offering such events to foster the growth of its employees and the institution as a whole. The goal is to deliver a superior collegiate experience for students that supports their success both personally and professionally, while embedding an enhanced EDI philosophy and awareness in the college’s daily practices and processes.

    View video from the event.

    Past Central Piedmont EDI Events/Initiatives:

  • College dedicates Ruth G. Shaw Advanced Technology Center

    Central Piedmont Community College dedicated the Ruth G. Shaw Advanced Technology Center, located on the college’s Central Campus, on Sept. 24. Dr. Shaw served as the college’s second president from 1986 to 1992. She attended and spoke at the dedication ceremony.

    The 79,194 square-foot Advanced Technology Center is a cutting-edge, state-of-the-art advanced manufacturing, engineering, logistics, and energy-related careers training facility that opened in 2018. Its prominent location on Central Piedmont’s Central Campus points to its importance in developing a highly-skilled workforce in Mecklenburg County and the college’s ongoing efforts to provide opportunities for increased economic mobility.

    Constructed by Rodgers Builders, the $25.5 million facility was designed by FWA Group with LTArchitecture and features:

    • Mechatronics and Automation Labs
    • Virtual Reality Labs
    • An Engineering FabLab
    • A CNC Machining Lab
    • Electrical and Mechanical Engineering Labs
    • 13 Computer Labs
    • 11 Specialized Equipment Labs
    • Faculty and Staff Offices
    • An accessibility bridge to the next door Levine IT Building

    “The Ruth G. Shaw Advanced Technology Center has become the cornerstone of our technology driven advanced manufacturing and engineering programs. It is a state-of-the-art training facility with which the college is proud to honor Dr. Ruth Shaw’s legacy,” said Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, Central Piedmont president. “From our two-year associate degree students to the incumbent workers who come here to learn new skills, the Ruth G. Shaw Advanced Technology Center is helping advanced manufacturing, engineering, and logistics expand their importance to the Mecklenburg County employment base and overall economy.”

    Learn more about Central Piedmont’s Advanced Manufacturing programs.

  • New Pathway for Teachers Created from Community Colleges to UNC

    North Carolina education leaders signed an agreement on Aug. 23, to address the critical teacher shortage in the state. President Thomas Stith of the North Carolina Community College System and President Peter Hans of the University of North Carolina System made a joint announcement of their new Comprehensive Articulation Agreement that will increase opportunities for community college students to transfer to teacher education programs within the UNC System. It is effective beginning fall 2021.

    The “Uniform Articulation Agreement in Teacher Education / Educator Preparation” is focused on developing a seamless transfer pathway for students who begin teacher preparation studies in the Associate in Arts in Teacher Preparation (AATP) and the Associate in Science in Teacher Preparation (ASTP) programs at a community college and then transfer to one of the educator preparation programs within the UNC System to complete a bachelor’s degree and become a licensed teacher in the K-12 system.

    The agreement includes 52 of North Carolina’s “Great 58” community colleges – including Central Piedmont – and 15 universities within the UNC System. Additional community colleges will offer the new transfer degrees for fall 2022.

    Learn more about the articulation agreement.

    Learn more about Central Piedmont’s Associate in Arts in Teacher Preparation (AATP) and the Associate in Science in Teacher Preparation (ASTP) programs.

  • Message to College on Coronavirus: Fall Semester Safety Protocols

    The college will operate at full capacity this fall, with a majority of classes being offered on-campus as well as many online. It is our intention to begin the semester operating in a way that mirrors pre-pandemic times as much as possible. Nevertheless, we want everyone to be as safe as can be while on campus. We have looked closely at the COVID-19 recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the N.C. Department of Health & Human Services (NCDHHS), as well as the strong communication coming from the Governor’s Office. All of these continue to stress the importance of being vaccinated.

    Vaccination Status and Clinics

    If you have not yet been vaccinated against COVID-19, it is strongly encouraged that you so, if you are so inclined, at your earliest opportunity. The college will not ask you to provide your vaccination status, nor should anyone connected to the college inquire about your status. The college is working out the details with a local healthcare provider to offer vaccination clinics on multiple campuses. We will share these details as soon as possible.

    In addition to encouraging everyone to be vaccinated, the college will have the following safety protocols in place until further notice.

    Face Coverings Required Indoors While on Campus

    Effective immediately, face coverings are required during instructional activities (during classes, labs, etc.); in face-to-face meetings, and whenever persons are moving through or gathering in indoor common areas, such as hallways, lobbies, stairways, elevators, our libraries, restrooms, etc. The only exception to this requirement is when employees are in their personal offices.

    Our face mask requirement does not affect the expectation of a continued return to on-campus work for college employees. Until the vaccination rate in Mecklenburg gets significantly higher or the rate of positive COVID-19 cases begins to diminish, requiring everyone to wear face coverings indoors will help keep everyone safe.

    Face masks and gloves remain available at building entrances to anyone who needs them. Face coverings are not required outdoors on campus.

    COVID Reporting and Quarantine Protocols 

    For information on reporting COVID cases and exposure, quarantine protocols and more, visit our Coronavirus Information page

  • College receives $10-million gift commitment to strengthen arts and humanities

    A donor who wishes to remain anonymous has made a $10-million gift commitment to Central Piedmont Community College. The gift is the single-largest individual donation in Central Piedmont’s 58-year history and among the largest gifts ever made to a community college nationwide.

    Central Piedmont will use the gift to transform its role as a community resource for arts and humanities programming and learning. Plans for the gift include:

    • establishing an endowment that provides resources to attract and retain outstanding arts and humanities faculty members;
    • creating a scholarship endowment to provide Opportunity Scholarships for students who are pursuing degrees in arts and humanities;
    • creating and launching an arts and humanities series which will bring renowned authors, artists, and performers to Central Piedmont for the benefit of students, faculty, staff and the greater Charlotte-Mecklenburg community;
    • establishing a public art fund, which will provide resources to commission public art for the enhancement of outdoor spaces at the college, enriching the lives of students, faculty, staff and visitors on a daily basis;
    • enhancing instruction in the visual arts; and
    • creating an endowment to support and expand instruction and learning in the arts and humanities at the college.

    “This magnanimous gift will strengthen Central Piedmont’s capacity to educate, train, and empower well-rounded individuals who will understand, appreciate, and participate in the rich and diverse cultural traditions that strengthen the Charlotte-Mecklenburg community,” said Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, Central Piedmont president. “The generous donor believes regardless of students’ academic background and desired education and career pathway, their perspectives should include experiences in the arts and humanities to achieve a better comprehension of the past, a better analysis of the present, and a better view of the future. Through our conversations, it’s clear the donor believes Central Piedmont is a critical community resource for Mecklenburg County residents beginning their higher education journey, seeking skills to build a family-sustaining career, or needing additional credentials for career growth.

    “A gift of this magnitude will be transformative for the college and the community. As a result of this gift, Central Piedmont students will gain a greatly enhanced appreciation of the arts and humanities, aiding them as they build productive lives of meaning and service. At the same time, Central Piedmont will be able to establish itself as a national leader in arts and humanities education among community colleges,” Deitemeyer added.

    The $10-million gift commitment comes to the college as part of its ongoing “Powering a Stronger Future campaign.” Powering a Stronger Future is an ambitious, five-year, comprehensive, fundraising effort focused on providing students with greater access to outstanding educational and career-preparation opportunities, addressing the workforce needs of business and industry in Charlotte and Mecklenburg County. The campaign will conclude on June 30, 2022.

  • Introducing the Leon Levine Health Sciences Center

    In recognition of a $2.5-million grant from The Leon Levine Foundation to support health sciences education and health careers preparation at Central Piedmont Community College, the college is naming its new health programs facility on its Central Campus the Leon Levine Health Sciences Center.

    Located at the corner of Charlottetowne Avenue and Elizabeth Avenue, the Leon Levine Health Sciences Center opened in August 2020. While many Central Piedmont students still were taking classes remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students in a number of health careers programs that require in-person instruction began taking classes and labs in the new facility immediately.

    Covering approximately 74,450 square-feet of space, the Leon Levine Health Sciences Center provides a home base for multiple health professions programs, including dental assisting, biomedical equipment technology, surgical technology, and polysomnography, and hosts a state-of-the-art virtual-anatomy classroom. In addition, the facility provides students with a number of hospital simulation rooms, including, trauma, mother and child, pediatric, typical patient rooms, an operating room, clinical laboratory, and pharmacy. The building is also home to the geomatics and civil engineering programs and provides several general use classrooms.

    “The Leon Levine Health Sciences Center has already made a significant and positive impact on the learning experience of our health professions students,” said Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, Central Piedmont president. “The center is a state-of-the-art, cutting edge facility, in which the college can prepare its students well for the professional work environments they will enter and the equipment they will use.

    “We thank The Leon Levine Foundation for its generous grant, which will help Central Piedmont continue to provide a comprehensive offering of health careers programs that are among the best in North Carolina. Students in our nursing and allied health programs will continue to thrive at Central Piedmont and enter the workforce well-prepared to provide superb care.”

    The Leon Levine Foundation grant comes to the college as part of its ongoing “Powering a Stronger Future Campaign,” which seeks to raise $40 million to support students, programs and faculty development. Central Piedmont will use the grant to support programs aimed at providing health careers training and help ensure a broad range of students have access to these programs.

    “We are honored to be part of investing in Central Piedmont Community College’s ability to offer top-notch academic healthcare instruction and a career pathway for generations of students to come,” explained Tom Lawrence, president of The Leon Levine Foundation. “The new facility will also help promote access to quality medical care by creating a pipeline of professionals for the region’s healthcare sector and by providing valuable medical resources to both students and the community.”

    The Leon Levine Health Sciences Center at a glance:

    • Construction began – September 2017
    • Facility opened to students – August 2020
    • Square footage – 74,450
    • Source of funding – 2013 Mecklenburg County bond referendum
    • Architects – Creech & Associates working with Morris-Berg Architects
    • Project manager – Rodgers Builders

    About The Leon Levine Foundation
    Established in 1980 by Leon Levine (Founder and Chairman Emeritus of Family Dollar Stores, Inc.), The Leon Levine Foundation supports programs and organizations that improve the human condition through investments in education, healthcare, human services and Jewish values. Based in Charlotte, N.C., the Foundation invests in nonprofits across North Carolina and South Carolina with strong leadership, a track record of success, and a plan for financial sustainability. Through its investments, the Foundation intends to create pathways to self-sufficiency, champion strategies for permanent change, and facilitate opportunities for growth. Learn more online at https://www.leonlevinefoundation.org/  or follow on Twitter and Facebook @LeonLevineFdn.

  • College awarded $25,000 for new Metallica Scholars Initiative

    For the third-consecutive year, Central Piedmont Community College was selected to participate in the Metallica Scholars Initiative and receive $25,000 in funding to support its career and technical education programs.

    Funded by Metallica’s All Within My Hands (AWMH) and led by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), the Metallica Scholars Initiative was created in 2018 to fundamentally improve the earning potential for students who become Metallica Scholars.

    Central Piedmont will continue to use the grant funds to provide direct support for students enrolled in its healthcare career programs but who need financial assistance to complete their studies and become licensed healthcare professionals. These programs include: nursing, physical therapy assistant, and occupational therapy assistant. The goal of the initiative is to ensure students receive relevant jobs skills that will make them competitive in the healthcare field.

    “We are proud to work with Metallica to advance the career and technical education provided by the nation’s community colleges,” said Walter G. Bumphus, AACC’s president and CEO. “Colleges across the country provide pathways to well-paying jobs through programs, services, and training that lead to in-demand skills, certificates and degrees for students. These programs are responsive to the needs of local businesses and provide a pipeline of qualified workers to local industry. It’s a win-win for our students and the local economy. For Metallica to continue to invest in these students and communities is a testament to the power of the workforce education community colleges provide and we are proud to do this work with them.”

    Learn more about the Metallica Scholars Initiative at Central Piedmont.

  • Linda Lockman-Brooks elected to chair Central Piedmont Board of Trustees

    Linda Lockman-Brooks has been elected to chair the Central Piedmont Community College Board of Trustees by her fellow board members. Lockman-Brooks, a college trustee since 2016, is the first female and the first Black person to chair the board in Central Piedmont’s 58-year history.

    Lockman-Brooks is a Charlotte business executive with extensive leadership experience at large public companies, as well as expertise as a small business owner and entrepreneur. She is founder and president of Lockman-Brooks Marketing Services, which provides strategic marketing and communications services and executive talent development resources to a diverse book of clients, including AT&T, Bank of America, Novant Health, The Dallas Mavericks, Luquire Agency, and The Nature Conservancy.

    Appointed and reappointed a Central Piedmont trustee by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Board of Education, Lockman-Brooks served on the board’s Finance and Facilities Committee from 2016-2018, and Executive Committee since 2018. She has chaired the Student Success and Strategic Initiatives Committee since 2018. She also is a co-chair of the Central Piedmont Foundation’s ongoing “Powering a Stronger Future Campaign,” the most ambitious fundraising effort in the foundation’s history. The campaign, with a $40-million goal and extraordinary success with a year to go, is aimed at supporting students, programs and faculty development and providing even greater access to underrepresented persons.

    “Central Piedmont has been fortunate to have Linda Lockman-Brooks as a highly engaged and thoughtful Trustee since 2016. Now, we are even more fortunate to have her chair the board,” said Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, college president. “Linda assumes leadership of the board at a crucial time, as Mecklenburg County emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic, and the college readies itself to help a growing number of Mecklenburg County residents restart their careers or begin their higher education journey to greater economic mobility.

    “The college will look to its trustees for sound counsel and guidance as it works to extend education and job-training opportunities to all who seek them,” Deitemeyer added.

    Lockman-Brooks is past chair and serves on the board of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library Foundation and on the board of visitors for Johnson C. Smith University. A sustaining member of the Junior League of Charlotte, she has also chaired the boards of the Arts and Science Council, Children’s Theatre of Charlotte and the YWCA of the Central Carolinas. She is a Senior Fellow of the Charlotte Chapter of the American Leadership Forum and was the Executive in Residence in 2020 for the Wake Forest University MBA program in Charlotte.

    Lockman-Brooks succeeds Edwin Dalrymple, who has chaired the Central Piedmont board since 2014. Dalrymple will remain a college trustee through June 2023.

  • Central Piedmont selected for ncIMPACT Initiative

    The UNC School of Government’s ncIMPACT Initiative announced recently the selection of 15 community collaboratives to an inaugural cohort working to better align their education systems with the needs of their regional economy. This intensive two-year project will position the cohort to significantly increase the number of individuals with postsecondary degrees, credentials, or certificates of value in the workforce. It aligns with the state’s legislative goal of 2 million individuals between the ages of 25-44 who possess a high-quality credential or postsecondary degree by 2030.

    Funding was provided by the John M. Belk Endowment and Dogwood Health Trust, a private foundation based in Asheville, N.C., with the sole purpose of dramatically improving the health and well-being of all people and communities of 18 counties and the Qualla Boundary in Western North Carolina.

    Central Piedmont Community College, the multi-campus college serving Mecklenburg County, is among the 15 chosen collaboratives. Aligning with their efforts to facilitate student learning, success, and completion, Central Piedmont is working closely with Mecklenburg County, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, and Bank of America.

    “These collaboratives offer an organized way to respond to future work challenges that no single institution or even an entire sector can effectively tackle,” said Anita Brown-Graham, professor and director of the ncIMPACT Initiative. “We are eager to begin this important work together.”

    Each team, or “collaborative,” may cover an individual county, a municipal-county partnership, or a multi-county region. The 15 selected collaboratives are led by the organizations identified below and serve the counties listed:

    • Cape Fear Workforce Development Board (Brunswick, Columbus, Pender, New Hanover);
    • Central Carolina Community College (Chatham, Harnett, Lee);
    • Central Piedmont Community College (Mecklenburg);
    • Eastern Carolina Workforce Development Board (Carteret, Craven, Duplin, Greene, Jones, Lenoir, Onslow, Pamlico, Wayne);
    • Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro (Guilford);
    • HIGHTS, INC (Jackson, Macon, Swain);
    • Land of Sky Regional Council (Buncombe, Henderson, Madison, Transylvania);
    • Made in Durham (Durham);
    • McDowell County Schools (McDowell);
    • Elizabeth City State University (Pasquotank);
    • Sampson Community College (Sampson);
    • Strategic Twin Counties Education Partnership (STEP) (Edgecombe, Nash);
    • Surry Community College (Surry, Yadkin);
    • Wingate University (Anson, Union); and
    • Work in Burke (Burke).

    Each participating community will benefit from: Five regional forums at which teams will establish goals, identify strategies, set plans for implementation, collaborate across sectors, and learn from experts; technical assistance support throughout the process; $15,000 to assist with the costs of hiring a community project manager; $10,000 in implementation funding for the project; evidence-based resources that respond to immediate learning loss concerns and prepare for longer-term planning; and a Local Attainment Collaborative Toolkit to implement and sustain demand-informed local collaboration with regional employers. The myFutureNC field-based regional impact managers will serve these collaboratives in partnership with ncIMPACT, as well as other communities across the state so they are positioned to join a future cohort of collaboratives.    

    "Building a strong talent pipeline will require a new level of cross-sector coordination. Among others, key strategic partners in these collaboratives must include PreK-12, universities, community colleges, workforce development boards, economic developers, chambers of commerce, county commissioners, policymakers, and civic leaders. And most critical to the overall success is ensuring decisions are being made based on data and research, and the voice of communities, businesses, industries, and employers is in the center of these important conversations,” said Cecilia Holden, president of myFutureNC.

    Forty-six project applications were received, representing 82 counties across the state. The selection committee sought to deliver a cohort with regional, economic, and demographic diversity; demonstrated community commitment; prior experience with educational attainment efforts; and identified barriers to educational attainment in the community. The ncIMPACT Initiative will manage this first cohort of collaboratives. myFutureNC will leverage the model developed through this cohort to identify and support additional collaboratives moving forward. Communities interested in updates and resources offered during this two-year project may visit: http://bit.ly/LEAC-project.