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Professors From UNC Asheville, Appalachian State And NC State Named UNC Faculty Fellows PDF Print E-mail
By Administrator   
Friday, 11 January 2019 10:42

The University of North Carolina System has announced three 2019 Faculty Fellows, who will spend one year researching academic affairs. The fellows are Ellen Holmes Pearson, UNC Asheville; Benjamin Powell, Appalachian State University; and Katherine R. Saul, NC State University.

Now in its fourth year, the fellowship engages experienced faculty who are specifically interested in academic affairs issues. The program gives these faculty mentored learning opportunities and recruits them to enhance the effectiveness of the UNC System, both at the System Office and at the institutional level.  Fellows are offered a unique opportunity to become familiar with System-wide, state, and national challenges in public higher education.  This year, the UNC System Office selected digital learning as the focus of the project and invited faculty from all 17 institutions to apply. 

The 2019 Digital Learning Project will provide an opportunity for fellows to assist in introducing new strategies to the teaching and learning environment.  They will be immersed in investigating and charting opportunities for faculty to take full advantage of new digital learning environments.  The fellows will review the current literature, consult with innovative teaching faculty across the System and across the national higher education landscape, and will investigate, and experiment with, new technologies.

“I am thrilled to welcome the 2019 Faculty Fellows who will bring varied perspectives from their classrooms and campuses to apply to our digital learning technologies,” said UNC System President Margaret Spellings. “In our ongoing efforts to increase access, the System will benefit from Drs. Pearson, Powell, and Saul spending the year evaluating and applying new ideas during this year that will bear fruit for years to come.”

Pearson serves as a professor of history at UNC Asheville. She graduated summa cum laude from Spring Hill College in Mobile, Alabama, and earned her Master of Arts degree from the University of New Orleans and her doctorate from Johns Hopkins University. Pearson is a former recipient of the UNC Board of Governors’ Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2012 and is the 2018-2019 UNC Asheville Ruth and Leon Feldman Professor for Service, in recognition of distinguished service in a variety of roles at the university.

Powell is an associate professor of entrepreneurship at Appalachian State University. He earned an AB in chemistry from Princeton University, an MBA from Kenan Flagler School of Business Administration at UNC-Chapel Hill, and an MA and Ph.D. in management from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.  Before pursuing an academic career, he helped start Milliken & Company’s composite fabrics division and an environmental marketing research company in Bangkok, Thailand. Powell serves on Appalachian’s advisory board for its learning management system and on the Walker College of Business online task force.

Saul earned her ScB in engineering from Brown University and her MS and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Stanford University.  An associate professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at NC State, she has won several teaching awards there and recently was elected to the American Society of Biomechanics Executive Board, 2018-2012. 

“The Faculty Fellows play a critical role in helping the UNC System Office respond to the needs of the universities and other institutions across the System,” said Dr. Kimberly van Noort, the senior vice president for Academic Affairs and chief academic officer for the UNC System. “They provide important perspectives on how to address specific issues and develop solutions that will have lasting impact on accelerating student success.  We are fortunate to have three superbly qualitied faculty, from three different institutions, who are willing to work on our important digital learning initiatives during the next year.”

Open to all tenured faculty members with at least three years’ experience at a UNC System institution, Faculty Fellows are selected based upon the strength of their relevant experiences in their academic area—including teaching, research, and leadership activities—and their input as to how they could support the fellowship project for that calendar year.  Since its inception, 13 faculty from nine universities have participated in the program. 

Last Updated on Friday, 11 January 2019 10:46
Wake Tech Board Approves Transition Plan for New President PDF Print E-mail
By Administrator   
Friday, 11 January 2019 10:24

The Wake Tech Board of Trustees has approved a plan to ensure a smooth and cohesive transition to the presidency of Dr. Scott Ralls. Dr. Ralls will become the fourth president of Wake Tech on April 12, sooner than originally planned. 

The plan includes the establishment of a transition team, made up of faculty, staff, administrators, trustees, and student representatives. The team’s main focus will be maintaining momentum in college operations and on key initiatives like capital improvement projects and strategic planning. The team will launch a comprehensive communications plan, obtain guidance on pending decisions, and develop a schedule for introducing Dr. Ralls to the college community and external stakeholders. 

On February 1, Dr. Gayle Greene, Wake Tech’s Executive Vice President, will become Acting President until Dr. Ralls officially joins the college. Dr. Greene currently oversees day-to-day operations, supervises senior administrative staff, and ensures that institutional goals are met. Interim President William Aiken’s last day at Wake Tech will be January 31. The transition leadership structure was approved pending review by the State Board of Community Colleges on January 17.

 Dr. Ralls was selected to be the next president of Wake Tech on December 18, following an extensive nationwide search, and he brings a wealth of experience to the position. For the past three years he has served as president of Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA), one of the largest and most internationally-diverse community colleges in the U.S. Before moving to Virginia, Dr. Ralls served as president of the NC Community College System, and as president of Craven Community College in New Bern. He holds a bachelor’s degree from UNC-Chapel Hill, and master’s and doctorate degrees in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from the University of Maryland. He has also worked for the North Carolina Department of Commerce, the U.S. Department of Commerce, and the U.S. Department of Labor.

Last Updated on Friday, 11 January 2019 10:25
Grants Awarded To 10 School Districts To Leverage Breakfast Programs PDF Print E-mail
By Administrator   
Thursday, 20 December 2018 09:37

A new grant program will help expand school breakfast access in ten North Carolina School Districts, Governor Roy Cooper and First Lady Kristin Cooper announced today. As part of the 2018-19 Breakfast After the Bell Initiative, 10 North Carolina school districts will receive grant funding through No Kid Hungry and The Dairy Alliance to implement innovative breakfast programs in one or more schools each.

“Studies have shown that kids who start the day with breakfast perform better at school and have fewer discipline problems,” said Governor Cooper. “Making school breakfast universal and more easily accessible reduces the stigma.”

“We’re committed to ending childhood hunger in North Carolina,” said First Lady Kristin Cooper. “This grant will help ensure students have easy access to breakfast so they can start their day ready to learn, and we would like to see these efforts expanded to support the academic, social-emotional, and health benefits that eating breakfast brings.”  

The program means grants totaling approximately $105,000 are being awarded to the following ten public school districts in North Carolina: Anson County Schools, Cabarrus County Schools, Cumberland County Schools, Edgecombe County Schools, Gaston County Schools, Johnston County Schools, Kannapolis City Schools, Public Schools of Robeson County, Wayne County Public Schools, and Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools. Each participating school district will receive between approximately $8,000 and $12,276.

These ten school districts were deemed eligible based on specific criteria set by the North Carolina School Breakfast Leadership Team using NC Department of Public Instruction meal claim data for the 2017-18 school year. The districts selected to participate also demonstrate the opportunity to increase school breakfast participation.

Breakfast After the Bell Models include:

Breakfast in the Classroom: Students eat breakfast in their classroom after the official start of the school day. On average, schools reach 88 percent breakfast participation with this model.

Grab and Go to the Classroom: Students pick up conveniently packaged breakfast items from mobile carts in high traffic areas, such as hallways or entryways, and eat their meals in the classroom or designated common areas.

Second Chance Breakfast: Second Chance Breakfast is particularly effective for middle and high school students. Students eat breakfast during a break in the morning, often between first and second period. Schools can use an innovative breakfast service model or open their cafeterias during this break.

School Nutrition Managers will monitor implementation and progress of the new breakfast service model within each school. Superintendents, School Nutrition Administrators, Principals, and other school leaders will also provide support.

Almost 60 percent of students in North Carolina qualify for free and reduced meals at school, but only 42 percent of those students eat school breakfast. Innovative Breakfast After the Bell models, such as Breakfast in the Classroom or Grab and Go, are cost-effective, efficient, and remove stigma to ensure more students start their day with a healthy meal.

The School Breakfast Leadership Institute will help school districts take advantage of federal funds, grant opportunities, and other resources to ensure all students begin their day fueled to learn.

The North Carolina School Breakfast Leadership Team consists of representatives from: the Office of the Governor of North Carolina; the Office of the First Lady of North Carolina; the NC Department of Public Instruction’s School Nutrition Services; No Kid Hungry NC; and Bladen County Schools.

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 December 2018 09:40
UNC Names Dean Of Medical School And CEO Of UNC Health Care PDF Print E-mail
By Administrator   
Wednesday, 19 December 2018 11:38
Dr. A. Wesley Burks, who has served as executive dean for the UNC School of Medicine and as a member of UNC Health Care’s senior leadership team, has been named CEO of UNC Health Care, Dean of the UNC School of Medicine, and Vice Chancellor for Medical Affairs at UNC-Chapel Hill.  
Burks succeeds Dr. Bill Roper who announced his retirement last May and was appointed in October to serve as interim president of the UNC System beginning in mid-January. He will begin his new role on Jan. 15.
Burks’ name was presented by President Margaret Spellings to the Board of Governors for a vote following unanimous votes by the UNC Health Care Board of Directors and the UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees. 
“Dr. Burks is the right person to lead UNC Health Care and UNC School of Medicine at a time of tremendous and unprecedented change in the health care industry,” said Spellings. “Having served as executive dean and member of UNC Health Care’s senior leadership team, he is uniquely positioned to immediately develop and execute a strategy that leads our health care system and School of Medicine into the future.”
“It is the highest honor to serve these amazing institutions as CEO and Dean,” said Burks. “I look forward to working with many people, especially our talented team, to develop and communicate a strategic vision and long-term goals for the institution, while strengthening our national and international standing. I am humbled and appreciative of the confidence placed in me by the Board of Governors, Board of Trustees and UNC Health Care Board of Directors.”
“No greater service can be rendered to the citizens of North Carolina than having the opportunity to receive quality, accessible and affordable health care. It is also our responsibility to teach the next generation of health care professionals while we continue our research that is changing the future of medicine. That is a huge responsibility, and having worked closely with Wesley for years I know he will lead the UNC School of Medicine and UNC Health Care forward.” said UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Carol L. Folt. “A world-renowned researcher who has dedicated his professional life to finding new cures for the most deadly diseases, Wesley embraces compassionate care outcomes that change the lives of patients and their families. Thanks to his focus on education, there are thousands of caring physicians and clinicians providing the best, affordable care across our state, nation and world.”
Dr. Burks has spent over 30 years taking care of patients, conducting research, helping to educate trainees, and leading institutions. He joined UNC in 2011 as physician-in-chief of the North Carolina Children’s Hospital and was named chair of the department of pediatrics in 2012. In 2015, he was named executive dean of the University of North Carolina School of Medicine. Prior to serving at UNC, Burks worked at Duke University Medical Center and Arkansas Children’s Hospital. He is a well-published and renowned researcher in the field of pediatric allergy and immunology.  Burks led a research team that was recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine for the world’s first treatment for potentially fatal peanut allergies.
“I could not be more pleased at the appointment of Dr. Burks to lead our health care system and school of medicine,” stated Charlie Owen, chair of UNC Health Care Board of Directors. “Wesley is a tremendous leader and visionary with the perfect combination of business acumen, researcher and educator to advance our institutions.
About UNC Health Care
UNC Health Care is an integrated health care system comprised of UNC Hospitals and its provider network, UNC Faculty Physicians, UNC Physicians Network, and the clinical patient care programs of the UNC School of Medicine. Additional hospital entities and health care systems include UNC REX Healthcare, Chatham Hospital, Johnston Health, Pardee Hospital, Caldwell UNC Memorial, Nash UNC Health Care, Wayne UNC Memorial, UNC Lenoir Health Care and UNC Rockingham Health Care. 
Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 December 2018 11:40

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