ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College will kick off its Homecoming week festivities on Monday, October 4 leading up to the Bishops’ football game against Greensboro College on Saturday, October 9. For the second time, the Battling Bishops will play their Homecoming game on-campus at the Vernon T. Bradley, Jr. Football Field, after first doing so in 2019.
Throughout the week, many activities will take place both on-campus and throughout the community for students, alumni, faculty, staff and the public. There will also be opportunities to cheer on men’s and women’s soccer, as well as baseball. An alumni football game is scheduled for Friday, October 8 at 8:00 p.m. on the field adjacent to the Gateway Technology Center (GTC), located at the front of campus.
Saturday, tailgating will begin at 9:00 a.m. At 10:00 a.m., the College will be dedicating a plaque recognizing and honoring alumni who served in harm’s way during the Vietnam War. This will be an addition to the existing Vietnam Memorial Courts at the Slick Family Foundation Tennis Center. Also at 10:00 a.m., the Alumni & Kid Zone opens at the football field or catch the alumni softball game at Edge Field. A chili cook-off will be held at 11:00 a.m., followed by the Homecoming golf cart parade starting at 11:30 a.m. Kickoff against Greensboro College is at noon and alumni plan to round out the day at The Rocky Mount Mills from 6:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m.
For a full list of activities, times and locations, visit ncwc.edu/homecoming or the NCWC Homecoming 2021 event on Facebook. Individual tickets can be purchased at the gate. Tickets are $5 for adults (18+), $3 for ages 12-18 and FREE for all under age 12. Alumni Homecoming Packets can be purchased online for $35 and include a game ticket, t-shirt, parking pass, bookstore discount and a list of Community Partner discounts.
ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College launched their annual fall fundraiser, The Wesleyan Promise Campaign, on Monday, September 27 at a kickoff breakfast in The Dunn Center. This campaign seeks vitally important support for various purposes including student scholarships, the latest in cutting-edge technology, lab enhancements, recruitment of students and faculty, additional library resources and more.
To help usher in the campaign, two highlights of the event included check presentations by First Carolina Bank and NC Wesleyan alumna, Jane Gravely. Lank Dunton, First Carolina Bank’s Market Executive for the Rocky Mount Area, presented the College with $25,000 to support the Sports Stadium Project. First Carolina Bank has been a banking partner with NC Wesleyan and is a strong supporter of the Sports Stadium Project and other ongoing efforts at the College. Jane Gravely ’74 donated $24,000 to establish the Gravely Arts Gallery in The Dunn Center and start an endowment supporting the visual arts programs at NC Wesleyan. She is a current NC Wesleyan Board of Visitors member and fan of the arts.
“We are so grateful for the support this community shows the College. For 65 years we’ve been serving not only our students, but the community as well. That partnership, from its beginning to today, has been mutually beneficial,” stated Eddie Coats, Vice President of Advancement. “As NC Wesleyan continues to grow and thrive, so will the opportunities we offer back to the area through the arts, academic excellence, quality athletics, entertainment and volunteer support. Regardless of the size, we are grateful for all gifts of support during this campaign.”
The College has set a goal of raising $280,000 by October 25. Those who are interested in supporting this campaign can give securely online at ncwc.edu/donate or by calling 252.985.5581.
ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College officially installed Dr. Evan D. Duff as its 8th president on Friday, September 17, 2021. An inauguration ceremony was held in Minges Auditorium at The Dunn Center on the College’s campus.
Opening remarks were given by Rebecca Mitchell, NC Wesleyan senior, double majoring in Psychology and Biology and intern in the President’s Office. “From the beginning, Dr. Duff has demonstrated his passion for helping students, offering them a voice and a place to call home,” stated Mitchell. She continued, “Dr. Duff truly cares about his students and their overall well-being.”
Greetings to Dr. Duff were given by students, faculty, staff, board members and friends. Some unable to attend sent personal greetings via video. Constance Williams, NCWC Board Member and human resource professional, offered her congratulations, stating “President Duff is by far one of the most visionary, humble and forward-thinking executives I have ever had the privilege to know. He prioritizes and operates from a position of fairness, excellence, inclusion and kindness.”
Janice Bryant Howroyd, Founder/Chief Executive Officer of the ActOne Group and NCWC Board Member, also sent her well-wishes, noting “Dr. Duff’s vision for the school is only exceeded by his strong competency and his vision for what life can be like for all of us.”
Award-winning actress, Sharon Lawrence, delivered her virtual greeting saying “I know that under Dr. Duff’s successful leadership, this institution has thrived in very challenging circumstances. I also recognize that today’s installation honors the tradition of Wesleyan excellence and investment in education for our region.”
A surprise, handwritten letter from Governor Roy Cooper was presented to Dr. Duff on his accomplishments. It read, “Rocky Mount is proud to be home to North Carolina Wesleyan College and the outstanding programs and experiences it offers to its students. I know under your leadership, it will continue to grow and be an important North Carolina institution of higher learning. On a personal note: thanks Dr. Duff— this is my home area and I know how important this great College is.”
Dr. Dan Crocker, Chairman of NC Wesleyan’s Board of Trustees, conducted the Investiture of the President. Afterwards, Paul Bauer, Vice-chairman of the Board of Trustees, presented Dr. Duff with a Presidential Medallion, a symbol of authority and a token of esteem and confidence. One side displays the President’s name and date of Inauguration, the other the College seal. The Seal includes five symbols – an owl is shown for wisdom, a lion for courage, a triangle for the Trinity, a budded cross for Christianity and a lamp for learning.
Dr. Duff was then joined on stage by his wife of 23 years, Marcy, and their four children – Tyson, Landon, Peyton and Chloe – as Rev. Laura Wittman gave a blessing of the presidential family.
Immediately following the Inauguration, a luncheon honoring Dr. Duff was held at the Rocky Mount Event Center for family and close friends.
ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College alumna, Caroline Little ’07, has joined the College as Alumni Relations Coordinator. As an ambassador for the College, she will collaborate with colleagues to create and maintain pathways for alumni participation in order to advance the mission and vision of NC Wesleyan.
Little graduated from NC Wesleyan in 2007 with a degree in Psychology, earning President’s List and National Dean’s List honors. During her time as a student, she was a resident advisor, writing lab tutor, orientation leader and admissions/financial aid ambassador. Little was involved with student activities, President of Alpha Sigma Tau sorority, Treasurer for the Greek Council, a member of the Wesleyan Singers and participated in the music club. In 2004, Little received the James R. Hailey Leadership and Service award.
Most recently, Little was Executive Director of Teal Toes (TT), an organization dedicated to creating ovarian cancer awareness. This cause is especially important to Little, as she is an ovarian cancer survivor.
“Caroline’s love for Wesleyan and the experience she gained while working in the nonprofit world will benefit her greatly in this role. It is with great pleasure to have someone with Caroline’s experience and passion join our team,” stated Eddie Coats, Vice President of Advancement.
In her new role as Alumni Relations Coordinator, Little will be responsible for the planning and implementation of programs and events that strategically engage alumni with the College while providing tangible benefits to alumni and current students. She will work with colleagues to identify, cultivate, solicit and steward alumni giving, while also serving as a liaison between the Alumni Association Board and NCWC’s Advancement team. In addition, she will educate graduating students about alumni benefits and help increase engagement in programs.
“I’m excited to be working with the Office of Advancement to create, support and cultivate programs for all members of the Wesleyan alumni community,” stated Little.
Little has also been involved with NC Wesleyan’s Alumni Association Board since December 2018. She was most recently elected Vice President of the board and has been acting President since May 2021.
ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College will welcome award-winning author and political columnist, Rob Christensen, on Tuesday, October 5. Rob plans to share a glimpse of Eastern North Carolina with his latest history, “The Rise and Fall of the Branchhead Boys,” at the free event starting at 6:00 p.m. in Minges Auditorium at The Dunn Center. With a career spanning over 45 years as a political journalist with The News and Observer out of Raleigh, Christensen brings to life the multi-generational story of the Scott family— one of North Carolina’s most influential political families.
Released in 2019, “The Rise and Fall of the Branchhead Boys” is the recipient of the prestigious Ragan Old North State Award for Nonfiction. Through investigative journalism that weaves together interviews paired with archival research, Christensen steps back in time to offer an engaging historical account of an important turning point for North Carolina’s political scene.
“I am looking forward to speaking at NC Wesleyan because Branchhead Boys is to a large degree about Eastern North Carolina and the continuing struggles with North Carolina’s urban/rural divide. Nash County, in particular, figures heavily in my book,” commented Christensen.
Christensen shares the story of the Scott family legacy and how race and populism influenced the political landscape of the twentieth century during a period known as the era of progressive politics in North Carolina. Three generations of Scott’s held statewide office overcoming racial stereotypes. W. Kerr Scott, Robert Scott and Meg Scott Phipps were able to gain the support of rural North Carolinians who were colloquially known as the Branchhead Boys, a group of grassroots rural voters. Christensen recounts the hardships faced by the Scott’s to help develop rural North Carolina and introduce modern amenities such as having electric and telephone power lines extended and to have roads paved. Instrumental in their own downfall, Christensen concludes to what ultimately led to their demise.
Christensen retired in 2018 after a successful career in journalism. He has appeared as a political analyst on over 600 television and radio programs including the CBS Evening News, Fox News, MSNBC, CNN, ABC’s Nightline, C-Span, PBS, NPR and the BBC. He has been interviewed by Don Imus, Mitch Albom, Diane Rheems, Jeff Greenfield, Chris Matthews, Cokie Roberts, Al Franken and more. He has shared his insights and industry knowledge through hundreds of talks across the state to colleges, libraries, bookstores, civic and political clubs.
ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College held its 65th annual New Student Convocation today in Minges Auditorium at The Dunn Center. President Dr. Evan D. Duff welcomed the Class of 2025, congratulating them on taking the next step in their educational journey.
“Get involved. Get connected. You never know who you may network with while you’re in college that might help you in your future. Have fun, but remember to study and stay safe— take care of each other,” stated Duff.
Keynote Speaker for the event was Etaf Rum, local businesswoman and novelist. She is the author of A Woman Is No Man, a New York Times bestseller, which hit the ninth spot on Amazon’s Bestseller List and was selected by Jenna Bush Hager as her book club’s May 2019 read. Rum is part-owner of three local businesses in Rocky Mount—Barley & Burger, a bold and refined kitchen and bar, and Tipsy Tomato, a premier Italian pizza restaurant. Her newest venture, Books and Beans, centers around two of Rum’s favorite things: writing and coffee. Outfitted with a counter and handful of tables, Books and Beans also serves breakfast, lunch and coffee from a North Carolina roaster.
While addressing the new class of Bishops, Rum shared tips to encourage discipline and goal-setting throughout their college experience. She also spoke about learning how to overcome adversity for success, transforming through suffering and developing the mindset of a winner.
“We often forget that college is a place where we learn how to learn. If there’s anything that you can take with you throughout these four years, it’s how do you develop the mindset of a winner?” stated Rum. “There are three things that I think are very important for you to foster before you leave Wesleyan…go after what you want, be disciplined and transform through suffering. It’s really important for everyone here to understand that you have the power to learn from your adversity.”
Rum grew up in a Palestinian-American household as the oldest of nine children in Brooklyn, New York. While raising her two children, she enrolled at North Carolina State University, where she earned a B.A. in English Language and Literature, a B.S. in Philosophy, and an M.A. in American and British Literature and Philosophy. In addition to speaking at North Carolina Wesleyan College’s New Student Convocation, Rum also addressed educators at Faculty Convocation on August 17.
After New Student Convocation, students exited The Dunn Center and were immediately greeted by a cheering crowd of returning students, faculty, staff and friends of the College forming a time-honored tradition— the Bishop Tunnel. As they proceeded through the tunnel to enter the annual Rock the Mount event, they were each welcomed by President Duff and his wife, Marcy. Rock the Mount is an annual tradition for NC Wesleyan to welcome new students to campus and to the community. It takes place the day before the College’s first day of classes, serving as the official kick-off event for the new academic year. Local businesses and organizations are given the opportunity to come and celebrate the start of a new school year with food, music and advertising. This year, nearly 80 community organizations lined the street in the center of campus to celebrate Wesleyan’s Class of 2025.
ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College recently welcomed Rev. Edwin Ferguson as the new Chaplain. Rev. Ferguson assumes the role from former Chaplain, Dr. Barry Drum, who will transition this fall to full-time faculty after filling the role since 2003.
Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, Rev. Ferguson is currently the pastor of Invitation at A.M.E. Zion Church in Snow Hill, NC. He has also served as pastor to young adult populations as the Youth/Young Adult minister at his home church, the Washington Metropolitan A.M.E. Zion Church in St. Louis. While there, he also held the role of St. Louis District YACM (Young Adults in Christian Ministry) Director. In addition, Rev. Ferguson helped to lay the foundation for a college ministry while serving at Mt. Zion A.M.E. Zion Church in Elizabethtown, NC. He set up group chats for spiritual development for young adults while they were in college and care packages were sent to them. He was also invited to share with the Minority Male Mentoring program at Bladen Community College.
“As an institution affiliated with the United Methodist Church, we are excited to welcome to our chaplaincy someone with Rev. Ferguson’s background of service to young adults. Spiritual exploration is a key component of the college experience for most students, and spirituality is a foundational element in their holistic development,” stated Dr. Jason Modlin, Dean of Students. “As our students seek to become the person they were created to be, our campus ministries play an integral role in their search. Rev. Ferguson is an ideal fit for NC Wesleyan as he shares the College’s mission of preparing students for all aspects of life.”
Rev. Ferguson has a passion for helping young adults achieve their potential. He looks forward to strengthening existing partnerships, as well as creating new ones, between the College and local faith-based organizations for the mutual benefit of students and the community. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in History from Concordia University and a Master of Divinity from Hood Theological Seminary where he is currently pursuing his doctorate.
8th President of the College
ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College will officially celebrate the appointment of Dr. Evan D. Duff as its 8th president in an inauguration ceremony Friday, September 17, 2021. The NCWC Board of Trustees named Dr. Evan D. Duff President of the College on June 10, 2020, after serving in the interim role since June 14, 2019. Due to the global pandemic, his inauguration has been delayed until now. This allows family and friends to attend, along with the campus community as they return for the fall semester.
Duff has served the College in many leadership roles since 2011 including Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs, Vice President of Adult & Professional Studies, adjunct professor and Provost. In these roles, Dr. Duff was responsible for leading the effort to approve new majors, co-writing the College’s first graduate application to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools- Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC) and creating seven new offsite instructional locations. He was also responsible for facilitating the development of partnerships with 20 two-year and four-year colleges, which led to articulation agreements or memorandums of understanding between those colleges and NC Wesleyan. Most recently, he worked with Dr. Chaunté Garrett to develop an ROTC partnership with Rocky Mount Prep.
He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Mount Olive College, holds a Master’s in Administration from Central Michigan University and a Doctorate in Organizational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University. Along with his formal education, Dr. Duff also completed certificate programs with NC State University and Cornell University.
During his career, Dr. Duff has authored or co-authored a great number of academic publications and presentations. He serves on many community boards and was awarded the volunteer of the year award with the Triangle Literacy Council in 2014. He has been honored with a variety of awards for service to the College and the community. He and his family most recently attended Hope Community Church in Cary, NC. Prior to this, Dr. Duff and his family were active members of Covenant UMC in Greenville, NC, where he served on the Pastoral Personnel Committee. Dr. Duff and his wife of 23 years, Marcy, have three sons and a daughter – Tyson, Landon, Peyton and Chloe. Their household is completed with five furry loved ones—three dogs and two cats—all of which are rescues.
The NCWC Board of Trustees cordially invites the public to Dr. Evan D. Duff’s Presidential Inauguration. The ceremony will take place at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, September 17 in Minges Auditorium at The Dunn Center.
Rock the mount is back and we’re ready to make it better than ever!
Come out and help us welcome NC Wesleyan’s Class of 2025! Surrounding area business owners, churches and other non-profit organizations are invited to come gain exposure with Wesleyan’s students and promote your organization. General Public is invited.
August 24th, 11am – 1:30 pm
Food Trucks, Music and More!
Volleyball and Soccer Showcase, 2pm -5pm
The Aftershock Party, 6:30pm
Live Concert, Carnival Rides, Free Food and More
ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College (NCWC) has developed an agreement with the ActOne Group (ActOne), a global workforce solutions leader based in California with operations in North Carolina, to provide extensive career development services for current students and alumni. Janice Bryant Howroyd (Howroyd), Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the ActOne Group, is a native of Tarboro, NC and a NC Wesleyan Board Member.
At no cost to the College, ActOne’s team of professionals will work alongside NC Wesleyan’s career services department to enhance internships, career development, and job placement for Wesleyan students and graduates. The College will allocate office space to the ActOne team so they can fully connect with staff and provide students with hands-on career guidance and advice. This partnership will provide students with access to a fully-dedicated team of staffing professionals, career counselors, talent advisors and trainers on campus. In addition, ActOne will work with area organizations to meet their talent acquisition goals. Implementation of this initiative is expected by summer 2021.
“I am excited to enhance our reach with the business community, as well as students, thanks to this new partnership. I look forward to working alongside ActOne colleagues to empower students and recent graduates with becoming fully engaged in their lifelong career planning and success, stated Jessie Langley, Associate Dean of Career Development & Leadership. “With Ms. Bryant Howroyd’s successful career and life journey, I have no doubt that her organization’s team will continue her vision in a way that resonates well with our students and the greater community.”
“Service with impact is a blessing…to the giver as much as to the receiver. The executives of ActOne Group are honored to make an impact on the lives of NCWC students and the Nash/Edgecombe community. We are committed to developing talent at the student level and preparing graduating seniors for professional lives beyond learning institutions. We know that the work we do across the globe is instrumental in helping people to reach their full potential and realize their dreams. It is a privilege to be able to provide this valuable service to the students of NCWC, especially under the leadership of President Evan Duff and his team,” said Howroyd. “With NCWC being the first college campus I ever stepped foot on, which happened during my first year as a Project Upward Bound student, I am truly blessed to give back to an institution from where I received some of the first foundational tools that helped to shape the person I am today.”
To help enhance personal and professional development, ActOne will provide NC Wesleyan students with college-to-career transition classes, career preparation, career building workshops and global awareness opportunities. In addition, ActOne will provide access to an online library of training courses, skill assessments, and tutorials that will benefit all students, regardless of their career path. Students will work with the ActOne team of talent advisors and counselors to develop leadership skills and gain insight into a variety of professions. As an added benefit to NCWC students, ActOne will provide two to four internships per year, allowing students to gain experience in customer service, recruiting, front office systems and database management.
About Janice Bryant Howroyd
As a tireless advocate for education, Janice Bryant Howroyd, Founder and CEO of the ActOne Group, has dedicated her resources to funding scholarships and serving on several boards, including the Harvard Women’s Leadership Board of the Kennedy School of Government, her alma mater North Carolina A&T State University, University of Southern California, and many others. Her passion for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) is rooted in her belief that STEM will be one of the great equalizers in 21st-century employment and has led her to work with Girls in Tech, a non-profit that works to create STEM opportunities for underserved communities. She attended NCA&T State University and holds honorary doctorates from California State University Channel Islands, NCA&T State University, and North Carolina Wesleyan College.
About ActOne Group
ActOne Group is a global enterprise that provides employment, workforce management and procurement solutions to a wide range of industries, Fortune 500 organizations, local and mid-market companies, and government agencies. Started in 1978 by Founder and CEO, Janice Bryant Howroyd (JBH). ActOne operates in 19 countries with over 17,000 clients and 2,600 employees worldwide. It is the largest privately-held, woman and minority owned workforce management company in the U.S.