Twenty-Four Inducted into NCWC’s National Society of Leadership & Success


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – Sigma Alpha Pi, North Carolina Wesleyan College’s official chapter of the National Society of Leadership & Success (NSLS) hosted its fifth induction of student leaders into the organization. The NSLS is the nation’s largest leadership honor society, with more than 700 chapters and over 1.2 million members.

NCWC’s chapter seeks to foster personal reflection, goal setting and leadership development amongst its members. The goal this fall focused on helping as many of the students who joined at the start of the semester through completion of the national requirements to become fully inducted members.

“Our members continue to report meaningful outcomes from the NSLS induction process. This semester students reported that their involvement helped them stay grounded, connect with peers, get out of their comfort zone, overcome obstacles, increase their confidence, empower their goal setting, choose their career path and shape them into better leaders,” stated Jessie Langley, Chapter Advisor and Associate Dean of Career Development & Leadership.

With a 68% induction rate, NC Wesleyan’s NSLS chapter is exceeding the national chapter goal by 28%. The College returned to hosting its traditional induction celebration on campus, which was held Tuesday, November 30 at 3:00 p.m. in the Garner Lobby of The Dunn Center. As part of the program’s community service efforts this season, attendees were encouraged to bring new blankets. These blankets were donated for distribution to participants of Ripple Effects, a community transformation organization providing multi-generational services, community resourcing and people development opportunities for those in Nash and Edgecombe counties.

Keisha Spivey, Executive Director of Ripple Effects served as the celebration’s keynote speaker. Spivey shared leadership advice with the inductees from her own personal experiences in establishing her non-profit. Her comments echoed the inspiration that each student will choose to “live decided.”

Through NSLS member nominations, Excellence in Teaching awards were given to faculty members Dr. Jarrod Kelly, Amy Lunceford and Dr. Katrina Sweet. This year’s Excellence in Service to Students award was presented to Jessie Langley and Elliott Smith. New for this year,

NCWC Junior and NSLS Vice President, Daniella Umubyeyi, was recognized with an Impact Leader award.

In order to achieve induction, members must attend Orientation, Leadership Training Day, three Speaker Broadcasts and three Success Networking Team meetings. Students are selected by their college for membership based on academic standing or leadership potential. Candidacy is a nationally recognized achievement of honorable distinction. To learn more about the National Society for Leadership & Success at nsls.org.

Former Teacher Joins Wesleyan Adult Studies Team


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College welcomes Joselyn Blount to its Office of Adult Studies team. As Admissions Coordinator, she will be based on the College’s main campus in Rocky Mount and manage the enrollment module for Wesleyan’s undergraduate and graduate programs at its 10 adult locations.

Joselyn Blount, Admissions Coordinator- Adult Studies

Joselyn is an alumna of Elizabeth City State University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. She went on to obtain a master’s degree in Higher Education from Walden University in 2016 and an M.B.A in 2018. Prior to joining NC Wesleyan, Joselyn was a teacher for ten years with most of her career in the Beaufort County School District.

“With an extensive background in education, Joselyn brings a lot of enthusiasm, attention to detail and eagerness to jump in. Her professionalism and skills will be a great asset to the APS admissions team. We are excited to have her join the Wesleyan Family,” stated Dani Somers, Director of Adult Studies & Graduate Admissions at NC Wesleyan.

Joselyn, a native of Plymouth, currently resides in Winterville, North Carolina with her husband, Bennie, and their three children: DaShaun, Elijah and Ava. During the week, she can be found in her office located in the Welcome Center.

NC Wesleyan Surpasses Annual Fall Fundraising Goal


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – Monday, October 25 concluded The Wesleyan Promise Campaign, North Carolina Wesleyan College’s annual fall fundraiser. The College set a goal of $280,000. Due to the generous support from donors, NCWC surpassed this by over $100,000.

“We received gifts both big and small. Each gift, no matter the size, positively impacts our students to help them reach their potential and meet personal, career and life goals,” stated Mark Hinson, Director of Annual Giving. “Donor funding assists NC Wesleyan to excel in its mission. We are grateful for all of the support and encouragement.”

The campaign raised monies for various purposes including student scholarships, the latest in cutting-edge technology, lab enhancements, recruitment of students and faculty, additional library resources and more. Donors consisted of faculty, staff, alumni, the College’s Board of Trustees, local organizations and community members. The campaign kicked off strong with check presentations from First Carolina Bank and NC Wesleyan alumna, Jane Gravely. To support the new Sports Stadium Project, First Carolina Bank presented the College with $25,000. The College also received $24,000 donated by Jane Gravely ’74 to establish the Gravely Arts Gallery in The Dunn Center and start an endowment supporting the visual arts programs at NC Wesleyan. To learn more about The Wesleyan Promise Campaign and ways you can support NC Wesleyan College, visit ncwc.edu/give.

Corporate Adoption Program to Enhance NCWC Career Readiness


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College has developed a new Corporate Adoption Program (CAP) to enhance the career readiness skills of NCWC students. This program will provide students with direct exposure to professional work settings and contacts. Envolve Benefit Options, which has a corporate office at the Rocky Mount Mills campus, was chosen as the College’s first partner.

Five Wesleyan students were selected to participate in the inaugural program with Envolve. A meeting was held at NCWC with students and representatives from the company in September and students engaged in a full-day learning experience in early October on the Rocky Mount Mills campus.

“Envolve Benefit Options vision operations started in Rocky Mount over 25 years ago and are proud to call Rocky Mount home. This partnership with NCWC allows Envolve to contribute more in community development with hopes that North Carolina Wesleyan students gain experience to become part of Rocky Mount’s growth,” stated Envolve Benefit Options Chief Operations Officer, Michael Grover.

Eligible students are juniors and seniors with a 2.5 GPA or higher and a major applicable to the partner’s industry and project at hand. Those accepted are assigned to a CAP team that includes five-to-ten students, one faculty mentor and one corporate partner. The Envolve partnership consist of students majoring in Accounting, Business, Communications, Computer Information Systems or Marketing.

When students apply to be a part of CAP, they are making a commitment to participate in the following:

  • Intentional growth in career readiness skills 
  • Monthly group meetings for the entire academic year
  • Meetings with their assigned CAP group and Faculty Advisor as needed
  • Job-shadowing/mentoring on-site with the Corporate Partner for at least one day during Fall Break and a minimum of two days during Spring Break 
  • Participating and presenting on a assigned corporate project with their CAP team during the spring semester

“It has been a joy seeing Envolve fully embrace our students and expose them to many aspects of their operations. I look forward to witnessing the learning outcomes through the corporate project these students will address in the coming months,” stated Jessie Langley, Associate Dean of Career Development & Leadership at NC Wesleyan. “As we continue to grow our Corporate Adoption Program, I expect it will be a significant highlight for our students when they later reflect on their college experience.”  

Rocky Mount-based corporations for future CAP partnerships will be selected based on the organizations’ expressed genuine interest in investing in the growth and development of a team of NCWC students and willingness to designate an internal CAP program manager. The CAP program manager will host workshops and meetings led by corporate speakers, while also maintaining ongoing communication with CAP students, faculty and staff. In addition, CAP partners are encouraged to offer paid summer internships to NCWC students in the program. Local organizations that are interested in partnering with North Carolina Wesleyan College’s CAP program can contact Jessie Langley at jlangley@ncwc.edu or 252.985.5177.

NCWC’s Annual Lighting of Wesleyan


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College will host its 16th annual Lighting of Wesleyan on Friday, November 19 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. This free community event includes a live nativity, Christmas carols, hayrides, Christmas inflatables, a meet-and-greet with Santa, hot beverages, concessions and a 12-foot tree.

Take a stroll through the College commons and enjoy a large collection of Christmas lights, inflatables and luminaries that line the campus sidewalks. Hayrides will begin and end at the clock in the center of campus. Guests will have an opportunity to be dropped off at the front of campus to view the lit, 12-foot Christmas tree and wander through the front lawn luminaries and Christmas inflatables. On the Southern Bank Green, behind the Braswell Administration Building, there will be a live manger scene and performances of Christmas favorites by The Wesleyan Singers. In addition, Will Plyler ’21, will perform several songs and will be promoting his new Christmas album, Once Upon a Silent Night. Snacks and drinks will be available for purchase by women’s soccer and volleyball to help support their athletic programs. Also, be sure to stick around for a surprise visit as Santa and his elf make their grand entrance on a fire truck. Other characters will be mingling with the crowd as well.

“Last year’s Lighting of Wesleyan had to be altered due to COVID-19 and was a drive-through-only event. This year, we’re excited to have the community back on campus to enjoy the festivities and help us usher in the holiday season,” stated Suzanne Brackett, Senior Vice President of Administration.

This family-friendly event is open to children of all ages. Come out and experience NC Wesleyan’s beautiful campus while kicking off the Christmas season!

NCWC Alum and Musician Produces Christmas Album


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – Will Plyler ’21, a graduate of NC Wesleyan College’s Entertainment Arts Music Production program, will soon release his first Christmas album. The new album, Once Upon a Silent Night, will be available on all streaming platforms beginning November 19, 2021.

The album will contain original Christmas songs and new arrangements of classic carols, including “Joy to the World,” “Angels We Have Heard on High,” “Go Tell It on the Mountain” and more. Those interested in purchasing the CD can do so by sending an email directly to wpmusicofficial@gmail.com.

“I am very excited to be releasing my first Christmas album this November! I recorded and produced this entire project from my home studio in Goldsboro, North Carolina,” expressed Plyler. “I owe the ability to make my own music and the knowledge I gained pursuing my bachelor’s degree in Music Production to NC Wesleyan College. My education truly prepared me to pursue my life dream of making music.”

An avid instrumentalist, Plyler played all the instruments on his album except for drums, which were played by his brother, Bentley. Plyler’s wife, Kaitlyn, also a Wesleyan alum, sang vocals on the album along with Abby Patterson.

“Will is one of our dynamic recent graduates in music production and is doing great things in his community and in the world of music. We are all proud of what Will has accomplished, both during his time here at Wesleyan and in his professional career, and are looking forward to his newest release, Once Upon A Silent Night,” noted Tony Sawyer, Assistant Professor of Music Production at NC Wesleyan College.

Since graduating from NC Wesleyan College, Plyler has served as Creative Arts Pastor at The Bridge in Mount Olive, North Carolina. He also produces and teaches music at Triple-Knot Studios. To listen to more from Will Plyler, follow him on Facebook and Instagram at @wpmusicofficial.

NCWC & Piedmont Community College Sign Memorandum of Understanding


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College (NCWC) recently signed an agreement that will help qualified graduates of Piedmont Community College (PCC) transfer to Wesleyan. The agreement aims to provide a seamless transfer for students who enroll at Wesleyan following completion of their two-year degree at PCC.

“Since 2015, NC Wesleyan and Piedmont have worked together to provide transfer pathways for their graduates. This enhanced agreement furthers our partnership by expanding these transfer pathways to all associate degree students. We look forward to continuing this relationship and serving the students at Piedmont Community College,” stated Katie Farrell, Associate Dean of Adult & Professional Studies.

This new agreement adds PCC to a list of 40 other colleges and community colleges throughout North Carolina that have a transfer partnership with NCWC. This will enhance and expand the educational opportunities of Associate in Arts, Associate in Fine Arts, Associate in Science and Associate in Applied Science graduates by offering PCC graduates access to the benefits of the Wesleyan Works program, pre-admission advising, generous transfer credit and a clear definition of the transfer of courses from PCC to NC Wesleyan. This MOU allows PCC Associate in Applied Science students to transfer an additional 15 hours of general education credits for a total of 75 transfer credits.

“Strong partnerships with transfer institutions like NC Wesleyan ensure that PCC students transition seamlessly. We are excited about the opportunity this newly signed agreement represents for our students to further their education while not incurring great amounts of educational debt,” noted Dr. Pamela G. Senegal, President of Piedmont Community College.

Students who graduate from PCC and transfer under this agreement may select any of NC Wesleyan’s programs of study or may transfer to the college’s Adult and Professional Studies program, taking advantage of the Wesleyan Works program. Students are required to maintain a minimum GPA of 2.0 and be in good academic standing. The agreement brings NC Wesleyan within the reach of PCC students who may not have otherwise been able to attend the College.

Wesleyan Works is a transfer program designed for community college students who plan to continue their education at NC Wesleyan. Students who participate in Wesleyan Works will have access to academic advising and financial aid counseling through NC Wesleyan, as well as access to events on the College’s main campus. The program is ideal for students who would like to attend NC Wesleyan’s evening or online programs.

About Piedmont Community College
Piedmont Community College, a public two-year institution that provides diverse educational opportunities in a learner-centered environment, serves the citizens of Person and Caswell counties. The College’s mission focuses on assisting individuals to improve their quality of life through offering lifelong learning opportunities, as well as acting as a catalyst for economic development. Learn more at www.piedmontcc.edu.

North Carolina Wesleyan College Celebrates 65 Years


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – On Monday, October 25, North Carolina Wesleyan College celebrated its 65th Founding Anniversary during the College’s annual Founders’ Day Celebration. The event took place from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. in Minges Auditorium at The Dunn Center.

The celebration began with a processional consisting of NCWC international students each carrying a flag representing their country, followed by faculty members. An invocation was given by College Chaplain, Rev. Edwin M. Ferguson, presentation of the colors by NC Wesleyan’s Army ROTC and the singing of the National Anthem by the Tar River Children’s Ensemble. President, Dr. Evan D. Duff, welcomed the crowd of over 600 students, faculty, staff, friends of the College and members of the community.

“This is a special Founders’ Day for a couple of reasons. The first is that it’s our 65th . We were founded exactly on October 25, 1956. This year we are putting a special focus on dedicated donors, past, present and future, who have created the Wesleyan we are today and the Wesleyan we will become,” stated President Dr. Evan D. Duff.

During the ceremony, a slideshow was presented highlighting milestones throughout the previous 65 years. In addition, a video consisting of congratulations and well-wishes from board members, a descendent of one of the founders and supporters of the College was played, along with messages from students thanking supporters.

Guest speaker for the event was Dr. A. Hope Williams, President of North Carolina Independent Colleges & Universities (NCICU). Her message offered words of encouragement for celebrating this milestone occasion and emerging from the challenges faced during the pandemic.

“Individuals and companies continue to have the most important role in the growth and enhancement of a college. All have meant so much historically and certainly though the pandemic…to keep our students safe, along with our faculty and staff,” stated Dr. Williams. “Under the critical leadership of President Duff, the service of the strongly committed Board of Trustees, and outstanding faculty and staff…Thank you for your leadership in transforming the lives and the futures of our students and their families.”

NCICU is the statewide advocacy, public policy and fundraising organization for the 36 independent, or private, colleges and universities in North Carolina. As President, Dr. Williams is the Chief Executive Officer for the NCICU Board of Directors of college and university presidents and for the Independent College Fund of North Carolina board that also includes corporate trustees and raises corporate and foundation funds for student scholarships and programs. She has been president of NCICU since 1992. Dr. Williams received her undergraduate degree in French and History from Duke University, an MPA degree from North Carolina State University and a Ph.D. in Education from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

After Dr. Williams’ keynote address, guests enjoyed a choral selection from the Wesleyan Singers, directed by adjunct faculty member, Thomas Parker. Following this was the presentation of the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award by Aaron Denton, Vice President of Athletics. This nationally-recognized award honors the excellence in character, leadership, community service and spiritual values of the late Algernon Sidney Sullivan, a lawyer, scholar and orator. The recipient should display characteristics of compassion and love for one’s fellow man and woman, adherence to Christian ideals, courteous and gentle behavior, and active participation in the College or community affairs. This year’s recipient was Nathan Edwards ’01 of Edwards, Inc., an industrial contractor headquartered in Spring Hope, North Carolina. Edwards’ work to improve the experience and facilities for NCWC students has reached more than half of the College’s athletic teams. He and his company’s time and efforts were a key factor in helping the College recover from storm damage in June 2019.

In addition, an inaugural Donor Impact Award was presented by Mark Hinson, Director of External Affairs. This award honors an individual or company, regardless of the size of the gift or the manner in which it was given, for their exceptional vision and generosity towards North Carolina Wesleyan College becoming a healthier, safer and stronger institution. The 2021 recipient of the Donor Impact Award was Dr. Robert and Mrs. Nancy Zipf. Early in the pandemic, the Zipfs made it possible for NCWC to purchase high-quality air purifiers to help with COVID-19 prevention and the spread of it throughout the College’s indoor spaces. Due to a prior obligation, the Zipfs were not able to attend the ceremony in-person. Accepting the award on their behalf was Dr. Jonathan Sarris and his wife Dr. Karin Zipf, daughter of Dr. Robert and Mrs. Nancy Zipf.

The event concluded with a reception immediately following in the Garner Lobby of The Dunn Center. Guests were able to browse through NC Wesleyan memorabilia on display while enjoying 65th anniversary cupcakes and lemonade.

WATCH THE CELEBRATION >

NCWC Partners with Duke Divinity School


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA – North Carolina Wesleyan College (NCWC) has signed an agreement with Duke Divinity School (DDS) to offer NCWC students an accelerated pathway to pastoral leadership. This agreement will allow NC Wesleyan students to dual enroll at both institutions during their junior and senior years.

Leaders of both institutions signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in a virtual ceremony on Monday, October 18. The Accelerated Pastoral Formation Program of Duke University is designed to coordinate the education of students in selected undergraduate schools with professional programs in theological education offered at Duke. The program provides a unique combination of liberal and professional education well suited for those desiring entry to the fields of ordained and lay ministry.

“NC Wesleyan has a proud tradition of preparing students for ministry. This partnership will provide students called to serve the church with outstanding opportunities for both intellectual and spiritual formation,” stated Dr. Andrew Stern, Professor of Religion at NC Wesleyan.

The Accelerated Program provides a pathway for undergraduate students to begin graduate level study at Duke that is eligible to apply toward completion of requirements for the Hybrid Master of Divinity (MDiv-H) or Master of Arts in Christian Practice (MACP) degree.

“Through Duke Divinity School’s partnership with NC Wesleyan College, a United Methodist-affiliated liberal arts college, we will create innovative ways to serve students seeking careers in ministry, helping students discern their vocational calling and cultivate their pastoral leadership,” stated Dr. Jung Choi, Senior Director of Wesleyan Formation Initiatives at Duke Divinity School.

Although the program is designed to accommodate a wide range of undergraduate backgrounds, students with majors in the humanities, especially Religious Studies, will be best prepared. NC Wesleyan students will be able to matriculate to Duke Divinity School immediately following the conferral of their baccalaureate degree.

About Duke Divinity School

Duke Divinity School’s mission is to engage in spiritually disciplined and academically rigorous education in service and witness to the Triune God in the midst of the church, the academy, and the world.

New Art Exhibit Coming to Mims Art Gallery at NCWC


ROCKY MOUNT, NORTH CAROLINA — Recent art works, Fantasy Fantastique by artist Patricia Horne, will soon be transforming Mims Art Gallery at North Carolina Wesleyan College. Her exhibition of colorful paintings, digital prints and sculptures will begin to blanket the gallery walls on October 28, 2021. Open to the public and free admission, come meet Patricia and enjoy refreshments at a reception on Thursday, October 28 from 5:00-7:00 p.m. in The Dunn Center’s Mims Art Gallery. The exhibit will also continue to be showcased Monday – Friday 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. and during evening events until January 3, 2022.

Gallery visitors will be lured in and transported into Patricia Horne’s dreamy world of fairy tales and fantasy, where everyday realities lie somewhere else. The artist shares her own improvisational surprises with the viewer as her cast of people, creatures, plants and planets, each have their unique personas and exist in narrative harmony with one another. Outside of sculpture and traditional painting, the computer has more and more become the perfect medium and paintbrush for Patricia. The immediacy of pictorial form, phosphene color, shape-shifting change, and layering of environment and space keep her flights of fantasy and narratives fresh and alive.  

Patricia, a life-long North Carolina native, has raised her family in Fuquay-Varina where she lives with her husband. Since childhood, making art has been one of her favorite things to do. In her teens, she competed at a national contest in NYC where she received the Gold Key Award and honorable mention for a pen and ink entitled “Lady In Command.”  After high school, she attended Chowan University between 1982 and 83 and then Hardbager Jr, College from 1983 to 84. Married with the responsibilities of raising a family, she put making art on hold. With children grown and on their own, it was a 2015 Zentangle class in art that recharged her artistic pursuits and ongoing non-stop career. Largely self-taught like so many other greats, she exhibits regionally, accepts commission art projects and is a resident artist in the 311 Gallery.

Don’t miss this opportunity to view Patricia Horne’s work. Her prints and paintings are for sale and will make a favorite addition in a home or special collection.

About The Dunn Center
The Dunn Center is a premier venue for concerts, shows and conferences in eastern NC. Located on the campus of NC Wesleyan College, in the heart of Rocky Mount, The Dunn Center is proud to host the Wesleyan Season Series of cultural events and concerts. In addition to these world-class performances, The Dunn Center features a variety of campus and community events, including Wesleyan Players productions, concerts of the Tar River Swing Band and Orchestra and other various performances by nationally known artists. The Mims Gallery, located within The Dunn Center, hosts a variety of exhibits, including paintings, drawings, and sculpture. The Gallery is open weekdays from 2:00-4:00 p.m., as well as during performances. To learn more, visit dunncenter.com and follow on Facebook.