WSOC-TV report: Many students overlook community colleges
Community colleges are often the way you can have it all when it comes to higher education: You can have “the dream without the bill.”
That’s how WSOC-TV, the region’s ABC affiliate, described the excellent option of community college for earning a degree without the stress of heavy debt hanging over your head. At Central Piedmont, it's possible to achieve the dream of higher education minus the nightmare of crippling debt that can sometimes follow.
Getting a high-quality education at an affordable price is a reality for many Central Piedmont students, including the following alumni who were featured in a two-part WSOC-TV news story on the student debt crisis.
- Watch Part 1: Central Piedmont Alumna Wylena Jones is an adult learner who recently graduated from Central Piedmont with her associate degree in nursing with almost no student debt.
- Watch Part 2: Central Piedmont Alumni Kayla, Koby, and Keyshawn Brown are triplets who attended Central Piedmont’s middle college high school, allowing them to earn their associate degree from the college at no-cost as high school students.
Learn about financial aid opportunities at Central Piedmont.
Allstate apprenticeship program moves the upward mobility needle
Central Piedmont’s Work-based Learning department recently partnered with Allstate on the “Good Hands College Apprenticeship,” a paid program that gives students the opportunity to obtain hands-on work experience at Allstate while completing their associate degree or certificate in cybersecurity.
More than 20 Central Piedmont students applied for the 30-hours/week apprenticeship program; however, job offers were extended to only three candidates – Sabrina Carr, Rushit Patel and Joshua Pierce – who began working for Allstate on Jan. 21, 2020, and joined Central Piedmont student Shanelle Keels, who was already on staff.
As apprentices, Central Piedmont’s students will work in teams to catch real-time hackers, attempting to break into Allstate’s systems; help monitor and create best practices for how to keep Allstate’s customers – and their data – safe; and gain valuable leaderships skills by participating in a variety of mentoring programs. For their efforts, the students will be paid to learn – $18.64/hour to be exact.
“Allstate’s model of learn and earn is the perfect example of a program that is creating upward mobility in the lives of others,” explains Ed Injaychock, director of work-based learning at Central Piedmont. “It’s helping bridge the gap, providing our students with the training and funding they need to secure a better-paying job or family-sustaining career in the future.”
“We are thrilled for the opportunities this will provide to Central Piedmont’s students and the Allstate Corporation,” added Dave St. Clair, vice president of security operations, hosting services, and the Charlotte Talent Center for Allstate Insurance Company.
Learn more about Central Piedmont’s Work-based Learning programs.
Message to the College on Coronavirus — Outbreak Reported in China
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported an outbreak of a respiratory illness caused by a new coronavirus (termed “2019-nCoV”) that was detected first in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China, and continues to expand. To date, according to the N.C Division of Public Health and the Mecklenburg County Health Department, there are no confirmed cases of the coronavirus in North Carolina, including Mecklenburg County.
Steele’s Mechanical donates $50,000 to Central Piedmont Foundation
Steele’s Mechanical, a mechanical contracting firm based in Lancaster, S.C., presented the Central Piedmont Foundation with a $50,000 gift on Dec. 19, to support scholarships for student veterans at the college. Steele’s Mechanical President Dan Bailey, a Central Piedmont alumnus and U.S. veteran, visited the college’s Central Campus to present the check to Dr. Kevin McCarthy, vice president for institutional advancement, and Aimee Brunton, director of development for Central Piedmont.
“As a U.S. veteran, I understand the financial difficulties student veterans face when trying to identify the funding needed to pay for college,” said Bailey. “When I was a student, I saw several of my fellow veterans leave school because they couldn’t afford it – even with GI Bill assistance. That’s why Steele’s Mechanical decided to host a charity golf tournament this fall, to generate the scholarship funding needed to ensure Central Piedmont’s student veterans receive the financial aid they need to complete their education without worrying about going into debt.”
The monies gifted to the college were raised during the company’s inaugural Nov. 6 charity golf tournament, held at Springfield Golf and Country Club, in Fort Mill, S.C. More than 120 players attended the event, which raised $25,000 for student veteran scholarships. Thanks to Steele’s Mechanical overall gift match, the final gift totaled $50,000.
Bailey and his family have a rich history with Central Piedmont. Bailey’s father, James, was an employee at Central Piedmont from 1977-2012. It was this early exposure to Central Piedmont that spurred Bailey to enroll at the college in 2010 after serving as a construction engineer and paratrooper in the U.S. Army from 1999-2005. As a member of the student body, Bailey was active in the college’s student veteran’s association, serving as its president in 2010 and 2011; participated in Phi Theta Kappa; and coached Central Piedmont’s soccer team. He graduated from Central Piedmont in 2012 with an Associate in Applied Science degree.
“It’s rewarding to see alumni, like Dan, giving back to their alma mater in such a meaningful way,” said McCarthy. “His company’s gift will help our student veterans overcome the financial barriers that stand in their way of achieving the personal and professional success they deserve.”
To learn more about giving opportunities at Central Piedmont, please visit cpccfoundation.org/giving/ways-to-give-outright-gifts.
2020 MLK Challenge a success
Service-Learning organized the 16th annual MLK Challenge on Jan. 20, 2020, the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday. One hundred and eleven Central Piedmont students, faculty, and staff chose to celebrate the holiday by providing more than 700 hours of service at eight community agencies, and one group performed “random acts of kindness” around uptown Charlotte.
Teams embraced unique and diverse challenges at Ada Jenkins Center, Carolina Raptor Center, KIPP Charlotte, Leah’s House of Refuge Community Center, Matthews HELP Center, Promising Pages, Renaissance West Community Initiative, Samaritan House, and throughout the city.
Members of the Central Piedmont community arrived early on campus to enjoy breakfast together, while Dr. Tracy Moore presented about the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and led a discussion about civil rights, social justice, poverty, and civic engagement. Afterward, groups were formed, presented a challenge, and were given $100 to complete their projects.
Those challenges included repairing and replacing perching on the Raptor Trail, creating banners with quotes about historical African Americans, beautification and organizing of facilities that are frequently used, and sorting books for children to encourage reading. The group providing random acts of kindness made care packages of toiletries and food, and they passed them out on the city bus and the streets of uptown.
Afterward, groups gathered back at Central Piedmont, to share their experiences with the larger group.
2019 Central Piedmont Nursing Graduates Earn 100% Passing and Employment Rate
Congratulations are extended to Central Piedmont’s nursing students for earning a 100%-employment rate and passing rate on their respective NCLEX-RN certification exam in 2019.
National certifications are considered the highest credential in the nation’s healthcare system and are widely recognized by today’s employers. That may be why our nursing graduates continue to be heavily recruited by many of today’s leading healthcare providers, including Atrium and Novant Health (as referenced in the following video).
Are you ready to #ConquerPossibility at Central Piedmont and join this in-demand career field? Learn more about Central Piedmont’s nursing program.
Gov. Cooper visits college, asks for more emergency grants for students
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper met on Central Piedmont’s Central Campus Wednesday with faculty, staff, and students to share exciting updates about the Finish Line Grant, an emergency grant program originally announced by Cooper in July 2018.
College is a serious financial undertaking. The Finish Line Grant is designed to assist community college students in addressing financial situations that would prevent them from continuing or completing their program of study or credential. Students facing financial hardship may be eligible to receive up to $1,000 to cover eligible expenses per semester.
During the event, Gov. Cooper announced that in North Carolina, 3,000 community college Finish Line Grants have been awarded to date. He added, “It’s amazing how a small amount of money can make a big difference in the life of a student who is trying really hard and is having to pay tuition and fees to try and better themselves in order to get over the hump.”
Too often, financial hardships such as unexpected healthcare costs, childcare expenses, or car and transportation issues prevent students from achieving their academic goals. Fortunately, there are many types of financial aid available to help pay for college.
Lexine Merrill, a Central Piedmont student and Finish line Grant recipient, echoed the governor’s sentiments. “In one week, I ended up with $1,300 in medical bills and car repairs. I had no idea what to do and nowhere to turn. But then a friend mentioned her experience with the Finish Line Grant, so I applied. I sobbed grateful tears when I learned I was approved. The Finish Line Grant relieved the financial burdens that were weighing heavily on me. It allowed me the opportunity to continue moving forward, toward my finish line."
Students facing an unexpected financial emergency can get connected to a variety of FREE resources through Single Stop, to help them stay focused on their academic goals.
Central Piedmont kicks off the spring semester
Students from Mecklenburg County and beyond are converging at Central Piedmont Community College this week, as the college kicks off its 2020 spring semester.
Student Life representatives and other staff members are busy working multiple information tables across all six Central Piedmont campuses to help ease students’ first day of class.
Representatives are guiding students to classes, answering their questions, and providing them with important college information, such as valuable campus resources, parking guidelines, and available extracurricular activities.
Also welcoming students this week is Central Campus’s new 154,100-square-foot North Classroom Building. The largest facility ever built by Central Piedmont, it opened its doors just in time for the start of the semester.
Learn how you, too, can earn a real-world, affordable, hands-on education that will transform your life at Central Piedmont. Visit cpcc.edu/admissions/enroll.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org or call 704.330.6808.