James Sprunt Approved to Participate in the 2019-2020 SECU Bridge to Career Cohort

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                  JULY 9, 2019

KENANSVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA – James Sprunt Community College is excited to announce that the State Employees Credit Union (SECU) Foundation Board has approved our college to participate in the 2019-2020 SECU Bridge to Career Cohort. Screen Shot 2019-07-09 at 4.00.23 PM

The SECU Bridge to Career Cohort Program was started in 2018 and is designed to help remove financial barriers for students seeking to obtain state-regulated or industry-recognized credentials that lead to sustainable wage careers within their local communities.

“We want to thank the SECU Foundation for this wonderful opportunity,” said Dr. Carraway, President of James Sprunt. “These funds will allow students to receive training so that they can go out and be gainfully employed….This grant is life changing in that it allows someone to be qualified for a job in an occupation that will provide a good living wage.”

James Sprunt, as a recipient of this funding, will identify and guide a cohort of workforce development students in the approved pathways through the entirety of the educational process.

The approved pathways are Barber Training, CDL and Truck Driving, and Manicurist Technology.

“This is an opportunity for individuals to get short-term training and earn an industry recognized licensure or certification,” said Anthony Thomas, associate vice president of continuing education.“Students can apply for a scholarship…. We will be issuing 30 scholarships in the amount of $500 each.”

Selected students should complete their program of study by August 31, 2020.

For more information on being a participant in the SECU Bridge to Career Cohort, please contact Anthony Thomas at (910) 275-6191.

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For media related questions, please contact Cheryl Hemric, director of marketing and public information at (910) 275-6170.

James Sprunt Community College is one of the premier institutions in the North Carolina Community College System. Our college serves more than 5,000 students annually from our Kenansville and WestPark campuses and three specialized centers. Learn more at www.jamessprunt.edu.

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James Sprunt to Offer New Short-Term Workforce Development Training; Scholarships Available

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                               JULY 9, 2019

KENANSVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA – The Workforce and Continuing Education Division at James Sprunt Community College will begin offering short-term workforce development training classes in a variety of disciplines including HVAC, Basic Automotive, Manicurist, Welding, Basic Cosmetology, CDL/Truck Driving and Basic Wiring.

The college will continue to offer short-term training in allied health, which includes nurse aide I and II, pharmacy technician, dialysis technician, gerontology, and medication aide assistant courses.

This new initiative is being driven by our new President, Dr. Jay Carraway, who sees workforce training as being imperative to our community, as well as for the economic development for Duplin County.

“We need a strong workforce,” said Dr. Carraway. “A strong and competent workforce is what will attract new industry to this area, as well as provide existing industry with a pool of qualified applicants.”

He adds, “We need to be able to give those in our community the opportunity to receive the training necessary in order to earn good wages and be able to support their families.”

Many students who complete courses, for example, in welding, can expect to earn between $20-$30/hour in their first year.

“As apart of the new wave at James Sprunt… the college now provides scholarships for Commercial Driver Training, Allied Health, and Barbering Training. Scholarship amounts may vary based on programs of study,” said Anthony Thomas, associate vice president of continuing education at James Sprunt.

“These scholarships will allow students to receive up to $500 to cover registration costs as well as supplies needed…. Additionally, we plan to introduce training programs designed for high school students, unemployed and underemployed county residents,” added Anthony.

Scholarships are made available through the Project SkillUP grant that the college received in 2018 from the North Carolina Community System Office and the Tobacco Trust Fund. Prospective students must complete an application available through the continuing education office.

Please see the link below for the schedule of new classes being offered at James Sprunt. Stay tuned for new training opportunities soon to be unveiled.

New Short-Term Training Classes

For more information on these classes and to register, please contact Patricia Underwood, administrative assistant for continuing education, at (910) 275-6192.

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For media related questions, please contact Cheryl Hemric, director of marketing and public information at (910) 275-6170.

James Sprunt Community College is one of the premier institutions in the North Carolina Community College System. Our college serves more than 5,000 students annually from our Kenansville and WestPark campuses and three specialized centers. Learn more at http://www.jamessprunt.edu.

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The Time is Now

Dr Jay CarrawayColumn by Dr. Carraway as published in the June 27, 2019 edition of The Duplin Times.

There is no better time to decide to go back to college than today! The summer is always the best time to decide to come to James Sprunt Community College. There’s little to no waiting time to see advisors or to receive assistance in filling out your application, completing placement tests, and getting help with filing your FAFSA. Our staff stands ready to assist you and are committed to helping you on your journey to success.

Please do not let any obstacle get in the way of you earning your degree or seeking training that will prepare you for the workforce.

Where there is a will, there is a way.

Last year, the James Sprunt Community College Foundation awarded $44,000 in scholarships to deserving students. We would love to be able to award even more scholarships this year.

If you are a 2019 high school student, and you’ve completed three College and Career Promise Classes through James Sprunt, you are most likely eligible for a Presidential Scholarship. That means you can attend James Sprunt, for free, until you receive your associate degree, given that you keep your grades up.

The Presidential Scholarships are open to any recent high school graduates in Duplin County, including home schooled students, as well as graduates of Harrells Christian Academy in Harrells and Liberty Christian Academy in Richlands. You must have had an unweighted GPA of 3.0 at the time of graduation, completed three CCP classes at James Sprunt with a “C” or better, complete all financial aid forms including the FAFSA, as well as complete the application for the Presidential Scholars program.

We still have Presidential Scholarships available to award to students for the fall semester. If you qualify, please come see us so that we can get you in class on August 15 and help you graduate debt free with an associates degree.

If you don’t qualify for the Presidential Scholars program, there are plenty of other scholarships at the college available, but it all starts with the FAFSA. Be sure that you complete your financial aid forms so that we can help you get the funding that you need.

Even if you do not qualify for financial aid, you still may qualify for other scholarships at the college. Again, it all starts with the FAFSA – so please right now, go to fafsa.gov and apply!

Maybe you don’t qualify for a scholarship? There may still be other options available through our Single Stop Office, which assists students with array of resources including transportation, food, and clothing.

Please do not let the reason why you do not get your degree be because you do not have the money.

We will exhaust every possibility to help you so that you are able to get in school and stay in school.

I encourage everyone to come to James Sprunt, talk with our admissions and financial aid staff, and chart a plan for your success. You don’t know what you qualify for until you try.

As Wayne Gretzky once said, “You miss 100% of the shots that you don’t take.”

In other words, you cannot succeed if you do not try, you cannot receive financial aid if you do not try, and you cannot get your degree if you do not try. It all starts with taking that first small step.

James Sprunt Community College will always be for our students. We want you to have the best possible experience and we want you to succeed.

Our college will be holding College Admissions Day on July 18 and July 29. These days are set aside to focus completely on assisting our students with completing their application for admissions, getting placement tests completed, assisting with and answering questions about financial aid, and signing students up for new student orientation.

So if you need help with any of these things, please come out to see us. Our staff is friendly, helpful, and are ready to get you from the front door to the classroom to walking across the stage at graduation. We will help you every step of the way.

The time is now.

Please don’t let this moment pass you by.

New student orientation will be held August 12 and August 13. Open registration for all students will be August 14. Classes begin August 15.

For current students attending this summer, as well as for returning students who attended in the Spring, you may register early now through July 31.

I hope to see all of you in the next class at James Sprunt Community College.

– Dr. Jay Carraway, President, James Sprunt Community College

College Admissions Day to be Held July 18 and July 29 at James Sprunt

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MEDIA ADVISORY                                                                                     JUNE 19, 2019

KENANSVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA –  On Thursday, July 18 and Monday, July 29, new incoming students at James Sprunt Community College will be able to complete their application, financial aid forms, placement tests, and sign up for new orientation all in one day and at one place, during College Admissions Day.

“Most of our students are first generation college students,” said Brian Jones, associate vice president of student services at James Sprunt. “College Admissions Day will provide assistance to those who are having difficulties with the online application.”

Last year, more than 40 students took advantage of College Admissions Day, making it a huge success for students seeking to earn their degree.

Although these resources are offered daily at James Sprunt, the college wants to make sure that it is known that assistance is available, and that our staff stands ready to help in anyway they can.

“Many times students don’t know how to ask for help, or where to find assistance,” said Brian. “This day is a way to remove barriers that individuals can experience while applying for college.” 

Anyone interested in attending James Sprunt is invited to attend College Admissions Day.

The event will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the Strickland Building.

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For media related questions, please contact Cheryl Hemric, director of marketing and public information at (910) 275-6170.

James Sprunt Community College is one of the premier institutions in the North Carolina Community College System. Our college serves more than 5,000 students annually from our Kenansville and WestPark campuses and three specialized centers. Learn more at http://www.jamessprunt.edu.

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James Sprunt’s Associate Degree Nursing Program Ranked #13 in North Carolina

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                   JUNE 17, 2019

KENANSVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA –  We are pleased to announce that James Sprunt’s associate degree nursing program has been ranked #13 out of 54 ADN programs in North Carolina by RNCareers.org.

“We are honored that our associate degree nursing program has been so highly ranked,” said Dr. Carraway. “Our faculty strives to give our students the best educational experience possible.”

James Sprunt offers both an associate degree nursing option, as well as a practical nursing program for students. Short-term training opportunities for Nurse Aide I / II, phlebotomy, pharmacy technician, dialysis technician, and gerontology are also available through our continuing education department.

The associate degree nursing program at James Sprunt Community College requires 71 credit hours of completion and is a limited enrollment program that requires the submission of an application packet prior to being accepted into the program.

Please see the link below for more information on the ranking from RN Careers: https://www.rncareers.org/rn-programs/north-carolina/

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For media related questions, please contact Cheryl Hemric, director of marketing and public information at (910) 275-6170.

James Sprunt Community College is one of the premier institutions in the North Carolina Community College System. Our college serves more than 5,000 students annually from our Kenansville and WestPark campuses and three specialized centers. Learn more at http://www.jamessprunt.edu.

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Wild About Garlic: Charles Vickers’ Made In North Carolina Success

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Driving down a dirt road, you can almost miss one of the newest farms in Bladen County, which is tucked away like a hidden treasure. With just an acre and a half, Charles Vickers is growing success, one garlic clove at a time. It is a ‘Made in North Carolina’ success story from the ground up.

As you step out onto the property, you can smell the cloves of garlic in the sun-baked field, and you can see where some of the cloves are starting to be harvested and prepared for restaurants and local merchants.

Charles recently completed the Southeastern Farm School, offered through the Small Business Center at James Sprunt Community College. It is a program designed for farmers, and those interested in farming, to give them the skills needed to run their farm like a business and make a profit. As with all programs offered through the Small Business Center, the farm school is offered as a service to the community at no cost to the individual.

“The Farm School class gave me the confidence where I was a bit lacking,” said Charles. “It was confidence in myself to make my farm successful.”

Charles credits his father’s interest in gardening for his motivation into becoming a farmer. “My Dad always gardened and he was disabled, but that was the one thing that kept him happy and moving.”

The farm Charles has started is in the beginning stages. It is much like any start-up business. He doesn’t have a lot of the tools that larger, more established farms have access to, so he improvises where needed.

“It’s his humble spirit and determination that make it work,” said Roxanne Reid, an instructor for the Southeastern Farm School at James Sprunt. “Charles is very hard-working and very smart. He is very strategic about the foundations he is setting for his farm.”

She adds, “Charles is a good example and reflection of today’s small farmer. Many farmers struggle to identify unique and specific crops. We teach our students to hone in on a niche and to grow for a purpose so they can become profitable, and that is exactly what Charles has been able to do.”

Charles’ niche: Garlic.

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“Garlic was something different to grow,” said Charles. “Nobody else does it here and I enjoy seeing it grow.”

Charles started his garlic farm with a 20 pound box he purchased and he has been growing off of that ever since.

“I was looking for something of a higher value for a smaller property,” said Charles.

He adds as he looks over his field and sees the garlic scapes, the flower buds on top of the garlic stalk, “The scapes of the garlic is also of an extremely high value. The scapes are like a delicasy, especially on the West Coast.”

The scapes are often used in salads and pestos to give an intense garlic flavor to the dish.

This year, because of the excess moisture from the heavy rains following Hurricane Florence, Charles only expects that only 10% of his field will be marketable.

“We had bulb development but not clove development,” said Charles. “I have to be ok with that.”

Charles looks forward to next year in which he hopes to grow different varieties and at having an opportunity to take another shot at it.

“It has been a learning curve,” said Charles. “This is still new to me. There is still a lot to learn.”

Charles understood early on that the business aspect of farming was of the utmost importance.

“That is what I was looking for in this, the business and organizational knowledge to keep my farm going.”

Having the desire to go commercial with his farm, Charles sought to become GAP certified, and he is the first student of the Southeastern Farm School to achieve that designation for his farm, which stands for Good Agricultural Practices.

“It’s about cleanliness and it’s food safety,” said Charles. “It’s mainly about the health of the product and the health of people the food is going to.”

This certification has become a bigger deal in recent years with news of food contamination and people becoming sick.

“It is more based on the experience of problems that have arose in food production over a period of time through irrigation, soil amendments, and those types of things,” said Charles.“I was ready to abandon [GAP Certification], but James Sprunt helped me to have the confidence to truly follow through with it.”

“Being GAP certified has helped me personally because it has given me a format for record keeping and that’s very important. To a degree, it is foundational in the business plan.”

It has also opened up opportunities for Charles that he never thought would be possible.

“I have my foot in the door in one or two markets, and that is success in itself, just to get your foot in the door,” said Charles. “Profitability is one thing, but when you are building, sometimes just making the connection is just as important…. Making the connections and profitability are really running a race with one another.”

Having his foot in the door, and being GAP certified, Charles has been able to make a few small sales with two major distributors of produce nationwide.

“They try to pull as much local produce as possible from local growers and farmers,” said Charles. “They are meeting the needs of chefs for middle to high-end restaurants.”

Charles says he is proud to know that his garlic is being used in dishes at restaurants.

“I know that my garlic has gone to Raleigh. It makes me feel good to know that my product is being used locally and regionally,” said Charles. “The distributors give me ideas of what their chefs want, giving me packaging hints and that type of thing as to what they are looking for so that I can adjust to that in the future.”

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With his farm located in Bladenboro, North Carolina, Charles says that he is in a prime location.

“I am fortunate that my farm is sitting at just an hour to Fayetteville, an hour to Wilmington, an hour to North Myrtle Beach, and an hour to Florence. I have location, and because of that, I have access to several really good markets.”

As for advice that he would give to other farmers, or those interested in farming, Charles says, “Do your research and grow something. Don’t try to do too much too fast because I have done that and it doesn’t turn out well.”

He adds, “There are going to be failures and there are going to be successes. It is trial and error. Grow something, put it in the ground, learn what it takes to keep it alive.”

Charles hopes that his farm will continue to be viable and that he will be able increase production.

“I hope to be an example of what a farmer can be.”

– Cheryl Hemric / James Sprunt Community College

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For more information on the Southeastern Farm School, including upcoming class offerings, please visit https://jamessprunt.edu/small-business-center/southeastern-farm-school/

For media related questions, please contact Cheryl Hemric, director of marketing and public information at (910) 275-6170.

James Sprunt Community College is one of the premier institutions in the North Carolina Community College System. Our college serves more than 5,000 students annually from our Kenansville and WestPark campuses and three specialized centers. Learn more at http://www.jamessprunt.edu.

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Emergency Meeting of the Board of Trustees

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                   JUNE 4, 2019

EMERGENCY MEETING OF THE JSCC BOARD OF TRUSTEES

KENANSVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA – There will be an Emergency Meeting of the JSCC Board of Trustees on Tuesday, June 11 at 5:30 PM in the McGowen Board Room. Please click here for the agenda for more information.

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For media related questions, please contact Cheryl Hemric, director of marketing and public information at (910) 275-6170.

James Sprunt Community College is one of the premier institutions in the North Carolina Community College System. Our college serves more than 5,000 students annually from our Kenansville and WestPark campuses and three specialized centers. Learn more at http://www.jamessprunt.edu.

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