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Cooper Directs $25 Million To Reopen Schools Damaged By Hurricane Florence PDF Print E-mail
By Administrator   
Wednesday, 10 October 2018 10:52

Governor Roy Cooper directed $25 million from the North Carolina Education Lottery Fund to speed repairs to K-12 public schools damaged by Hurricane Florence.

“Students need to get back to learning and educators need to get back to teaching, but many school districts can’t afford the repairs schools need,” Gov. Cooper said. “The lives of thousands of students, teachers and families are on hold and they need our help to recover.”

While many schools have reopened since Hurricane Florence struck last month, seven North Carolina school systems remain closed, keeping more than 130 schools out of operation and nearly 90,000 students out of class. Several affected school districts have depleted most of their contingency funds and need immediate financial assistance to repair roofs, flooring and electrical wiring, eradicate mold and mildew and replace furniture to get schools reopened.

The emergency funds will be administered by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. Priority will be given to district and charter schools in Brunswick, Craven, Duplin, Jones, New Hanover, Onslow, Pender and Robeson counties that have immediate repair needs and are not currently in operation.

Some of the repairs should be reimbursable by federal disaster recovery funds. Transferring the money now gives schools quicker help and allows them to retain contractors to speed repairs.


Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 October 2018 10:54
UNC System Names Chief Academic Officer PDF Print E-mail
By Administrator   
Wednesday, 10 October 2018 10:21

University of North Carolina System President Margaret Spellings today announced that Dr. Kimberly van Noort has been appointed as the senior vice president for academic affairs and chief academic officer for the UNC System. Dr. van Noort had been serving in an interim capacity in the position since May 31, and the announcement is effective immediately.

“Kim has done an exceptional job in an interim capacity in this role, and her knowledge and guidance are invaluable to the UNC System,” said President Spellings. “She will bring passionate enthusiasm and a deep knowledge of pedagogical innovation, academic planning, assessment, and curriculum development to this now permanent senior leadership position.”

A native of rural Nebraska, Dr. van Noort was the first member of her family to earn a college degree. After graduating from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in French, she earned her Ph.D from Boston University. An expert in French literature, her past academic research focused on the twentieth-century novel in France.

Dr. van Noort began her academic career at the University of Texas at Arlington in 1995, later becoming associate dean for academic affairs in its College of Liberal Arts in 2004. There, she was a strong advocate of study abroad, establishing the university’s first faculty-led program in France. In addition, she built new graduate student support mechanisms, developed faculty review and workload policies, and implemented a new advising model across the campus.

Promoted to associate vice provost for undergraduate studies and director of university college in 2014, Dr. van Noort developed extensive experience in strategic planning, accreditation oversight, and program assessment. In these roles, she spearheaded a redesign of UT-Arlington’s core curriculum, helped to create new degree programs, and worked to expand a general education degree-completion program. She also expanded student success programs, oversaw significant expansion of online services, and implemented new software to improve advising capabilities.

Dr. van Noort had previously served as vice president for academic programs, faculty, and research for the UNC System since April 2016.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 October 2018 10:22
Gaston College Will Hold Opioid Abuse Prevention Seminar PDF Print E-mail
By Administrator   
Monday, 08 October 2018 08:35

October is National Substance Abuse Prevention Month (NSAPM), an annual observance focused on raising public awareness and encouraging communities to take action and get involved to prevent substance abuse. In response to this call to action, the Gaston College Health and Human Services Technology Substance Abuse Program is sponsoring a community event entitled National Substance Abuse Prevention Month Awareness: Opioid Epidemic in Our Community. The free event takes place from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. on Monday, October 29, in the Myers Center Multipurpose Auditorium on the Dallas campus of Gaston College.


At the Gaston Cllege event, Dr. Todd Davis, Chief Medical Officer for CaroMont Health, will address the history and pharmacology of opioids, addiction, and the opioid epidemic in our community. Dr. Davis currently serves on the Boards for the Community Blood Center of the Carolinas and Gaston Together, and is a member of the Controlled Substances Coalition to combat the opioid crisis in Gaston County.


“At the event, I will share information about opioids, their effects on the brain, and risks for addiction,” said Dr. Davis. “I will also discuss the permanent changes that occur to people with addiction, practical things that can be done to reduce the likelihood of addiction and I will talk about the challenges our community and society are facing with this issue and what the community is doing to proactively manage the problem. I will also be available for questions.”


According to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, from 1999 to 2016 more than 12,000 North Carolinians died from opioid-related overdoses, the majority of which were unintentional overdoses. A recent Duke University study found that the state experienced an 800 percent increase in opioid deaths in this period of time, with Gaston County’s increase measured at more than 1,300 percent.


“The Gaston College Human Services Technology Program and the Human Services Club are grateful for the opportunity to host this event,” said Ann Elliott, Department Chair for Human Services and Early Childhood Education at Gaston College.“The purpose is to celebrate National Recovery Month Awareness by providing information sessions regarding the opioid crisis and supports available in Gaston and Lincoln counties. We are grateful to Dr. Todd Davis for agreeing to share his powerful presentation during the seminar. We will also be fortunate to have Mr. Nazrul and Mrs. Tammy Chowdhury provide a brief presentation on Remembering Austin based on their experience as parents who experienced the loss of their son from an opioid overdose. Dr. Davis and the Chowdhurys are members of the Gaston Controlled Substances Coalition. Attendees will receive free information pamphlets provided by Partners Behavioral Health Management.”


The Gaston College Dallas Campus is located at 201 Highway 321 South, Dallas, N.C. The event takes place in the Myers Center Multipurpose Auditorium from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. For more information, contact Ann Elliott at 704 922-2382 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


Feds Provide $2 Million In Grants For College Students Impacted By Hurricane Florence PDF Print E-mail
By Administrator   
Wednesday, 03 October 2018 10:44

The U.S. Department of Education will award $2 million in grants to financially needy college students affected by Hurricane Florence:

“These grants are greatly needed and will go a long way in assisting students that can least afford to bear the devastating costs caused by Hurricane Florence,” said UNC President Margaret Spellings. “We will continue to work with state and federal officials to ensure all of our affected students receive the support they need to recover in order to successfully continue their educational pursuits.”

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos announced earlier today that the supplemental funds are being made available from Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG). The grant money targets 38 institutions located in counties in North and South Carolina designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency for individual or public assistance as a result of the hurricane.

UNC System institutions included Fayetteville State University, which received $197,528, the University of North Carolina Wilmington, which received $61,147, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, which received $183,550, and East Carolina University, which received $330,718.

The UNC Board of Governors also approved a process that will allow UNC Wilmington to adjust its academic calendar by waiving up to 200 minutes of instructional time for a typical class. UNC Wilmington’s plan also includes canceling its upcoming fall break, canceling a “reading day” prior to final exams, lengthening classes by five minutes and providing additional interactions between teachers and students via online 


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